Summary: After the latest mass killing, our Right-wing goes crazy again, displaying our nation’s broken OODA loop for all the world to see. On a hopeful note, perhaps each of these episodes brings us closer to realizing our madness — the first step to reform.
- The “hair of the dog that bit you” solution
- Or — mock their small dicks
- Do other nations have fewer mass killings because they have more guns?
- More reactions from the Right
- For More Information
- Other posts about guns
(1) The “hair of the dog that bit you” solution
America has a rate of killings by gun far higher than any other nation, and higher rate of gun ownership. So logic says that the solution is even more guns.
(a) Glenn Reynolds (Prof of Law, U TN) reminds us of what he wrote after the Virginia Tech shootings (several mass shootings ago): “People don’t stop killers. People with guns do“, op-ed in the NY Daily News, 18 April 2007 — Excerpt:
In fact, some mass shootings have been stopped by armed citizens. … Police can’t be everywhere, and as incidents from Columbine to Virginia Tech demonstrate, by the time they show up at a mass shooting, it’s usually too late. On the other hand, one group of people is, by definition, always on the scene: the victims. Only if they’re armed, they may wind up not being victims at all.
… “Gun-free zones” are premised on a fantasy: That murderers will follow rules, and that people like my student, or Bradford Wiles, are a greater danger to those around them than crazed killers like Cho Seung-hui. That’s an insult. Sometimes, it’s a deadly one.
Reynolds expands on his “making stuff up to ignore the bloodshed” theory in “Gun-free zones provide false sense of security“, USA Today, 14 December 2012. He opens with some vintage Instapundit madness, citing the late Burroughs as a paragon of responsible gun ownership:
“After a shooting spree,” author William Burroughs once said, “they always want to take the guns away from the people who didn’t do it.” Burroughs continued: “I sure as hell wouldn’t want to live in a society where the only people allowed guns are the police and the military.”
Burroughs’ New York Times obituary gives us more about Burroughs’ gun use:
One September afternoon in 1951, they began to drink with friends. Eventually, Mr. Burroughs, who was quite drunk, took a handgun out of his travel bag and told his wife, ”It’s time for our William Tell act.” There never had been a William Tell act, but his wife laughed and put a water glass on her head. Mr. Burroughs fired the gun. The bullet entered her brain through her forehead, killing her instantly.
(b) “A Thought Experiment Related to School Shootings“, Eugene Volokh (Prof Law, UCLA), 14 December 2012 — Excerpt:
Instead of hiring special-purpose security guards, why not take some of your existing employees — teachers, administrators, and the like — and offer them a deal: They’d go through some modest training and subjected to basic background checks, and in exchange they’d be given the right to carry the same guns that the security guards would have had.
Indeed, this way you could have not just one security guard but several (if several staff members sign up). And you might get people to do this even without paying them, since they might value the ability to defend themselves and to not be sitting ducks should the worst happen.
… And no need to call the licenses given to those who participate in the program “concealed carry” licenses, just in case some parents and others don’t like the concept. Just call them “volunteer security guard” licenses, though you might expect that most people who sign up for this will also have licenses to concealed carry on the street. Of course, if a killer does show up, maybe some of these volunteer security guards will just cower in the corner rather than trying to defend the students, or attack the killer. But it seems more likely that someone will confront and try to stop the killer if that someone is armed then if that person is disarmed.
What’s your answer to that? Is there some reason why the armed security guard is safe and helpful, but the armed teacher, administrator, or staffer — er, the teacher with a volunteer security guard license — would be useless and a menace?
(c) Statement by Larry Pratt, executive director of Gun Owners of America:
Gun control supporters have the blood of little children on their hands. Federal and state laws combined to insure that no teacher, no administrator, no adult had a gun at the Newtown school where the children were murdered. This tragedy underscores the urgency of getting rid of gun bans in school zones. The only thing accomplished by gun free zones is to insure that mass murderers can slay more before they are finally confronted by someone with a gun.
(2) Or — mock their small dicks
Ace offers another solution: “Killer Killed His Parents First“, Ace of Spades HQ, 14 December 2012
Parents first. He then went to Connecticut to kill a woman he was involved with somehow — whether wife or ex-girlfriend — and also to kill all the children near her.
… I’ve said this before but I think the media can help reduce these things from occurring. These nutters see themselves heroically, sort of as bigger-than-life agents of mayhem and evil. Now that may sound like a bad thing to you, but it doesn’t sound bad to them: They’ve embraced it.
… I think it would do at least something to dissuade the next potential mass murderer to know, for example, that coverage on him will not focus on the Evil Menace part of him (which is a self-conception he finds flattering), but the Sad, Lonely Pathetic Guy Who Has a Small Dick and Couldn’t Keep a Woman or a Job and Just Couldn’t Hack It part of him.
… If I were the media, I’d allow myself to get very personal in publishing accounts of these guys. Personal, and nasty.
(3) Do other nations have fewer mass killings because they have more guns?
(4) More reactions from the Right
(a) Important: More madness: “The most unhinged reactions to the shooting“, Alex Seitz-Wald, Salon, 14 December 2012
(b) “Some Crazy Talk About Guns From Politico“, Charles P. Pierce, Esquire, 17 December 2012
(c) “National Review Writer Doubts the Power of the Bushmaster AR-15“, Amanda Marcotte, Slate, 17 December 2012
(d) “There’s Little We Can Do to Prevent Another Massacre“, Megan McArdle, Daily Beast, 17 December 2012 — “The things that would work are impractical and unconstitutional. The things we can do won’t work.” Her solution:
I’d also like us to encourage people to gang rush shooters, rather than following their instincts to hide; if we drilled it into young people that the correct thing to do is for everyone to instantly run at the guy with the gun, these sorts of mass shootings would be less deadly, because even a guy with a very powerful weapon can be brought down by 8-12 unarmed bodies piling on him at once.
(5) For More Information about guns in America
(a) Important: Mass Shootings in the United States Since 2005, Brady Campaign website — It’s 62 pages long.
(b) Important information about America by Kieran Healy (Assoc Prof Sociology at Duke) about the death rate in the US due to assaults (all causes).
- America Is a Violent Country — Source of the graph at the top.
- Assault Deaths Within the United States
(c) Like so many things in America today, the gun culture is a fading love of old white guys. See “The Declining Culture of Guns and Violence in the United States“, Patrick Egan (Asst Prof Politics, NYU), the Monkey Cage, 21 July 2012.
(d) “The Price of Gun Control“, Dan Baum (author of author of Gun Guys: A Road Trip), Harper’s, 20 July 2012 — The price of gun control is very high, and we might not get much in return.
(e) The CDC is not known for its advocacy for the 2nd amendment, so this result deserves attention: “Firearms laws and the reduction of violence: A systematic review“, American Journal of Preventive Medicine, February 2005 — By the Centers for Disease Control’s Task Force on Community Preventive Services.
(f) “Mass Murder Up, Even While Gun Violence Down“, Ron Dicker, Huffington Post, 20 July 2012 — Excerpt:
Single-victim gun killings have dropped more than 40% since 1980, according to 2010 FBI crime data. But the total number of people dying in attacks that claimed four or more victims has climbed from an average of 161 a year in the 1980s to 163 between 2006 and 2008, according to FBI statistics.
(6) Other posts about guns
- The Founders talk to us about guns for a well-regulated militia,24 July 2012
- Yet another mass killing in America. Watch the reactions on the Right, and learn., 17 December 2012
- “The right to shoot tyrants, not deer”, 11 January 2013
- But Hitler confiscated guns, leaving Germans helpless!, 11 January 2013
- Guns do not make us safer. Why is this not obvious?, 14 January 2013
- Let’s look at the Second Amendment, cutting through the myths and spin, 15 January 2015
- Myth-busting about gun use in the Wild West, 16 January 2013
- Second amendment scholarship (using money to reshape America), 19 January 2013
- Do guns make us more safe, or less? Let’s look at the research., 23 January 2013
- Guns in the wild west: regulated, with no fears about ripping the Constitution, 25 January 2013