Senseless, avoidable obscenities such as mass shootings inevitably bring out the moronic, cowardly hordes who trot out the same brainless responses every time. They’re always a variation on the same old themes, e.g:
“England (or wherever) has gun laws, [about which they’re usually wildly misinformed] but it doesn’t stop stabbings, acid attacks, ‘truck murders’ etc.” But America has guns, and America also has stabbings, acid attacks and ‘truck murders’ etc., so here’s the point: guns don’t stop them. And another thing about knife crime: if someone pulls a knife, I can run away. I can’t run away from a gun. And a knife - even a machete - doesn’t come close to a gun as an effective weapon for a quick mass murder.
“Guns don’t kill people, people kill people.” Ok, let’s stop right there; if you think that’s an argument, you’re simply not clever enough to participate in the debate. Same with the ‘violent video game’ argument. Fuck off with that shit, you’re either staggeringly misinformed or too stupid for words.
“It’s not a gun problem, it’s a mental illness problem.” No it’s not. All countries have people suffering mental illness, but they don’t have recurring mass shootings.
Then there’s the idiotic ‘good guy with a gun’ argument, which is usually proposed by someone who you wouldn’t trust to paint your fence, let alone protect your life. But let’s consider it. There are, of course, plenty of documented incidents where an armed civilian ‘good guy’ stopped a ‘bad guy’, either in the defense of themselves or others. But there are a couple of other things to consider. Firstly, those situations almost certainly arose only because there is almost no gun control. Admittedly, that’s an arguable point, but there are also plenty of documented incidents where the ‘good guy’ missed the ‘bad guy’ and hit the ‘innocent guy’, or dangerously misconstrued the situation or, even worse (if that’s possible) acted as judge, jury and literal executioner of someone committing a relatively trivial offense such as shoplifting (an offense often committed by people who actually are mentally ill). Also, for what it’s worth, there are already plenty of supposedly ‘good guys’ with guns, i.e. cops. Despite being on the scene, the police seemingly made little beneficial difference to the recent incident in Uvalde, Texas. In fact, there’s plenty of evidence to suggest they actually made the situation worse.
Secondly, let’s think about the military for a moment. Anyone facing active combat gets a lot of rigorous training, and this is not the sort of training available to civilians, even those civilians who aren’t pudgy, self-serving, deluded, action-hero wannabes. The reason they get this training is not just for tactical awareness and other, useful combat skills. It’s so that when the shooting starts, they stand a chance of continuing to function as part of an effective team instead of freezing, literally shitting themselves, or panicking and firing wildly at friend and foe alike (and those things really happen). And here’s the thing, even with extensive and exhaustive training, you don’t know how you’re going to react when the bullets start flying. And here’s the next thing, even if you do ok in the first battle, you still can’t guarantee your reactions in the second battle, or the third, or the fourth. I’ve worked on arts therapy programs with soldiers suffering from combat-induced PTSD, which is not a trivial condition, and I’ve heard their stories. And do you know what else is really frightening? Some fucking delusional moron with a gun and a Clint Eastwood complex believing he can protect me from another idiot who starts shooting up a mall with an AR15. No thanks mate; you just add to the danger. If that’s why you want a gun, your mental endowment is insufficient for gun ownership. That’s why there are plenty of veterans who have seen real combat who are pro gun control and anti both concealed and open carry laws. They know the reality of the situation.
The ‘freedom’ argument. Oh, this is delicious. From birth, Americans are subjected to relentless propaganda telling them that theirs is ‘the land of the free’ and that gun ownership guarantees that freedom, which is, of course, utter nonsense; an equivalent is an Englishman actually believing that ‘Britannia rules the waves’ and thinking that owning a dinghy proves his point. In reality, America barely makes it into the top twenty in the league table of free nations (at the time of writing, the US jointly occupies the number seventeen slot with the good old UK). One of the relatively few things that pisses me off about America is when, say, a military aircraft flies overhead and someone says “That’s the sound of freedom”. I seriously want to shake that person vigorously by the ears just to see if I can jumpstart their brain. These are also the sort of people who fail to understand that, in any society, real freedom is a consequence of good lawmaking. Plenty of Brits who live here - including me - are either amused or mystified by the ‘freedom’ myth, since they’re pretty damn sure they’re no freer here than they were in the UK - and possibly less so. The point? Lots of untrained civilians carrying lethal weapons do not make a free society.
Self-defense, aka living in fear. You probably have to live here to appreciate the culture of fear that’s constantly propagated from multiple sources. Fear your neighbor, fear the stranger, fear illness, fear the government. Of course, when I realized how much money fear can generate, I began to understand it…
Next up: the Second Amendment (2A for short). I’ve never met anyone who could present a coherent and factual argument in favor of keeping 2A. Bullshit abounds. It’s an outdated and ridiculous piece of legislation that needs to be junked. It’s adherents basically all say the same thing in different ways, but first let me iterate a cultural truth: Americans like to think they’re law abiding, but as a general fact, they only follow the laws with which they agree. That’s not necessarily a bad thing of course, but it’s important. Don’t like the speed limit? Ignore it. Don’t like the mask mandate? Ignore it. I could go on. It gives you a flavor of the flexible attitude most Americans have towards legislation of all types, and that includes 2A. They will twist and contort and outright lie about it, but it all boils down to this: “I have no real reason to oppose gun control other than that I’m any or all of the following: a spoilt child and I don’t want you to take away my toys, a victim of propaganda, incapable of critical thinking, sociopathic, or suicidal” mixed in with a soupçon of “You’re not my dad so don’t tell me what to do.” Should you need it, here’s the text of the 2A: ‘A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.’ In the light of our war on education and the dumbing down of America, the 2A is clearly a dangerous irrelevance that needs to be updated.
I could go on for days, but I’m running out of time and you’re probably running out of patience, but I will say this: if you’re the sort of ass who thinks that thoughts and prayers are an acceptable response to a mass shooting, you might need to consider that your prayers are an insult to the god you pretend to serve. They’re simply a lie you use to disguise your contempt for your fellow man.
I’ve known a number of people who were anti-vaccine and anti-mask, until Covid started killing their family. Is that what it will take for the ‘anti gun control’ mob to start thinking rationally? Do they need to wait for their kids to die before they’ll see sense?
Oh, and don’t dare think about taking a gun to an NRA meeting. The NRA folks are always happy to ban guns when they get together, because safety is suddenly their primary concern…