Percy Bysshe Shelley once wrote that “all spirits are enslaved which serve things evil.“
The instigator behind lots of things evil in this nation is the National Rifle Association and the gun merchants that stand behind and finance them and the huge manipulation and scare tactics they employ as they convince every American that owning tools of mass murder is not only their constitutional right so they can “defend” themselves but that, in fact, it was a necessity and their duty to do so, invoking Arthurian privilege and making people see themselves as literal White Knights that need to protect us from the evil, tyrannous government lead by a black man out to get us.
As Steven M. Boyce, one of the two men who walked through Portland with an assault rifle dangling from his shoulders to “educate” people said last week “historically, knights have worn their weapons on the outside, while bad guys concealed their daggers.” Ever met a terrorist who didn’t believe that?
It is quite unfathomable why anyone – after the Sandy Hook shooting in which 20 children were slaughtered, not just shot but slaughtered – and after all the mass shootings and deaths at the hands of guns over the past 35+ years – would blindly, willfully and passionately advocate for more unlimited gun ownership by every Tom, Dick and Harry in this country no questions asked and actually believe that owning more tools of murder is better for the safety and civility of society and that they are actually doing everyone a favor?
That is the kind of skewed logic people who employ violence and terror and instigation of fear use when trying to justify their unconscionable actions “we are doing it for the greater good/there is a real threat out there/we are just here to help you/millions of guns floating around in society is better for all of us.” Or as George Orwell put it WAR IS PEACE, FREEDOM IS SLAVERY and IGNORANCE IS STRENGTH.
The Founders of this nation did not want us to resolve our political problems by using guns and thus with violence. In fact, such an approach to “civil” discourse goes directly against the very principles this nation was founded upon where people are to resolve their problems and dissatisfaction through civil society and democratic means, such as grassroots, organizing and lobbying instead of by shooting opponents.
As I stated in an earlier post, at the time the Second Amendment was written, there was no standing army. The Founders wanted all men (as defined by that time period meaning white men), to be part of a well-regulated militia specifically because there was no standing army. But we have a Federal military now, which replaces the “well-regulated militia” mentioned in the Second Amendment.
In other words, the Founders – when inserting the Second Amendment into the Constitution – had a very different reason and rationale in mind than the enthusiastic, militant gun advocates and their lead terrorist agency, the NRA, claim.
Gun-toting failbots should understand the Second Amendment before they go touting it as meaning that anyone can and should walk around with as any guns as they want and that in fact such an act would make us all safer and was our civic duty as the liberators from an evil government out to get you – as if freedom and safety could be achieved at the point of a gun.
As Connecticut Governor Dan Malloy put it:
“Let me be clear, freedom is not a handgun on the hip of every teacher. And security should not mean a guard posted outside every classroom. That is not who we are. […] Why is this so hard a concept for gun worshipers who value their rights to own any gun they want above the rights of children to live so hard to grasp?”
The elusive “tyrannous government threat” mantra employed by the NRA is just that – elusive – and designed to instigate fear and loathing among the simple minded, teaching them and society at large that guns and violence and the terror they ensue are desirable and in fact the civic duty of every citizen, because the NRA’s and the Right wing media’s greatest weapon – just as with any terrorist – is not guns, it’s fear, violence, scapegoating and othering to justify all kinds of atrocities.
In fact, the entire case of the NRA is built on a house of cards filled with fear.
This isn’t about self defense – as if we lived in some unstable developing nation held together by martial law which – in all fairness – would require us all to be armed in case counter insurgents storm the house.
This is about the NRA systematically using fear and the tools of terror as well as instigation of fear and paranoia as a means of coercion, shaking down politicians and frightening others into silence while thousands die in shootings by guns they helped put in their hands, like a gift – like the Arthurian sword. This is an organization that has been making sure for decades that American mass murderers are the best equipped mass murderers in the world.
Self defense in a nation like the United States is a terrible, not to mention completely unfounded and weak rationale for putting all sorts of tools of mass murder into the hands of everyone and make guns ubiquitous symbols of our landscape and interaction with one another.
How many people do you know outside a war zone who had to actually defend themselves with a gun? And if you do, which you probably don’t, did it work? Did they know how to shoot at a moving target? At close range? Did they have to fire a 30 round or even 10 round magazine into the perpetrator for “self defense”? As an amateur, when you defend yourself, usually one or two shots are enough. You don’t need a gun that shoots 7 or 10 or 30 or even 100 rounds. Those types of instruments are used in combat by armed forces and there is no need for them to be in civilian hands – even though the NRA wants you to think there is.
Each year, over 5,000 cases are argued as self defense in courts when in reality only 250 of those have been true self defense cases.
Why are we worshipping guns so much that now children have to plea with lawmakers to please consider putting some restrictions on them? Why should a fourth grader, of all people, have to write a letter to our lawmakers begging that they please ban semiautomatic weapons and large magazines at least? Note that Ava, the Sandy Hook student whose letter found its way to the White House, was not even asking for a right out ban on all guns- which would be the real meaningful legislation, but instead that merely military style assault rifles be banned.
What message is this sending to children who grow into adults thinking this (and, of course, many other completely selfish, entitled, and cruel acts) is appropriate social behavior? How are we raising so many children who fail to learn compassion or empathy and pro-social behavior – because wielding a gun is not that.
More and more often I hear people expressing social sentiments that basically boil down to, “I’ve got mine, so screw everybody else“, which is the basic point of the two young self proclaimed white (literally) knights in shining AR-15s in Portland who knew that they were safe (having the privilege of being white men because if two black men were doing the same, the police would not have been this accommodating) so they didn’t really give a shit how many other people they terrified, how many people’s days they interrupted, how many episodes of PTSD they triggered, or how much police time they wasted by their completely inconsiderate action. You don’t educate people with guns, you intimidate, scare and terrorize them.
How can the NRA and the gun merchants they represent and who have bought this government, still defend a position that is completely indefensible, creating such equally indefensible social attitudes that cost people their lives?
There is just no excuse for advocating unlimited access to guns in a civil society held together by the rule of law.
The NRA is a Terrorist Organization and Should Be Handled as Such
Terrorism is defined as the use of violence and intimidation in the pursuit of political aims – which is exactly what the NRA stands for and advocates and does and has been doing for decades, including casting their opposition to Obama’s gun control plans as “the fight of the century”.
They are scaring people into believing that Obama really is Hitler trying to take away their guns so he can finally go through with that long overdue invasion he’s been planning pretty much since birth when he was first indoctrinated by Kenyan Martians into the dark arts of socialism and community organizing; a scare that is likely to instigate violence and apprehension terrorizing those who do not share their enthusiasm for armed revolt and mitiantism under the guise of “self defense” and “freedom” while simultaneously driving the already paranoid, gun wielding bigots into the kind of extremism that result from instilling such fears and with them violence.
That people who have no reverence for life and no respect for the dignity of human beings then call themselves patriots evoking such things as freedom and Constitution is not only deeply unsettling but something they have in common with all terrorists who cite their love for a cause, mostly homeland or country, as justification for and rationalization of thei horrendous crimes and sinister reality they purport and in fact actively create.
Lanza may have pulled the trigger on that day at Sandy Hook, but make no mistake about it: the NRA and the passionate gun advocates were all standing behind him letting him do it, because in the end the only entity they have been rooting for has been the likes of Lanza and the tools he used under their watch and with their approval through bullying and silencing tactics of opponents, to carry out this monstrous act.