Monday, December 14, 2015

Mass Shootings: It Isn't Ideology, It Isn't Madness, It Isn't Hatred. It's Guns.

Open carry in Texas: Tell me how this helps in any way.

Every time there's another mass shooting, we examine what happened and why. The killer was crazed. He was upset by faked videos of harvesting baby parts. He hated his mother and took it out on an elementary school. He had a political agenda. A long time ago, he did it to impress Jody Foster.

Maybe these things, these motivations matter. One thing we know for sure: He did it because he had the firepower. For sure he did it because of that.

Here's Mike Pesca in Slate:
Guns. A lot of people have a lot of terrible ideas: Sometimes it’s getting revenge on an ideology, sometimes it’s getting revenge on the police, sometimes it’s getting revenge on people you personally know. But without guns, the death toll would be much lower. I’m not saying that all the hateful rhetoric around Planned Parenthood didn’t unfairly nudge them closer to the crosshairs. But it’s not just bad ideas and angry men that lead to these obscene death tolls. It’s that the ill heads with these twisted ideas can so easily access a means of lethality uncommon in the civilized world. We are an aggrieved, worked up, angry people. But an American who is aggrieved or enraged or unmoored is more deadly that an Englishman or an Australian not because of the extremes of our discourse, or the extent of our aggrievement. The bad idea that people are most dying from is not an anti-abortion idea or an anti-cop idea or anti-Western, anti-Christian. It’s anti–gun control. That’s the deadliest and most ignorant idea of all.
You're right, Mike. Let's have more thinking like this. Atrios of Eschaton makes a good suggestion:
I'll support any gun control legislation you can think up. When I am your benevolent dictator, I will, in fact, take all of your guns away. But as I've written a million times, I don't think any semi-realistic gun legislation is really going to solve the problem, because we aren't actually going to take all of the guns away. As I said, I would if I could. But it isn't going to happen. The best we can do, I think, is to treat gun gropers like the ridiculous, if dangerous, people that they are. Won't help much, but making people embarrassed to own guns, instead of proud, might help a bit.
Yes, shame them. Atrios offered another important point. When he was young -- and this goes for me -- he doesn't remember all this talk about guns as "protection." Me neither. It wasn't common sense -- or common -- back then, and it isn't common sense now, especially with violent crime having gone down so much over the decades. Now you're more likely to get shot by George Zimmerman than John Dillinger.

So I get why Atrios calls guns detachable death penises. Let's shame them if we can't disarm them. Maybe they'll disarm themselves eventually. I hope so.

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