Home

Does The SCOTUS Decision on Concealed-Carry Mean More Gun Violence?

Leave a comment

              Know how I learned about the Court’s decision to throw out the New York gun law? Because I got an email from one of the gun-control organizations saying something about how the decision would result in more gun violence, less community safety and oh, by the way, send us some dough.

              Was it a coincidence that the Court’s decision was announced at the exact, same time that the Senate got 65 votes to override a possible filibuster by Rand Paul, or Ted Cruz, or one of those other Republican jerkoffs and will now proceed to a vote on the gun bill?

              Either way, I’m going to (as usual) give my Gun-control Nation friends a minority view of yusterday’s ruling because I happen to think that: a) the law deserved to be thrown out, and b) Gun-control Nation is making a mountain out of a molehill and maybe it’s time to stop farting around with such nonsense and do some serious work.

              You should download and read the decision right here, but I’ll save you the trouble as long as you’re willing to trust that what I am going to say is based on an honest reading of what the Court said.

              First of all, if the Court’s decision does not (read: not) obviate New York’s authority to determine whether a law-abiding state resident can purchase and/or own a gun. It simply says that the 2nd Amendment does not distinguish between keeping a gun inside the home versus walking around with a gun outside the home. Since the former is justified for self-defense, the latter should be justified on the same basis as well.

              The Court further notes that this approach, which is referred to as ‘shall issue’ and removes the arbitrary authority of licensing authorities to grant concealed-carry of guns outside the home, is only practiced in 6 states, with New York and California leading the pack. In many of the other 44 states, the process for licensing residents to buy or own a gun is the same regardless of whether the gun is kept inside the home or carried around outside the home.

              Which brings us to the central issue about concealed-carry (CCW) which this decision says is Constitutionally-protected in the same way as the 2008 Heller decision gives Constitutional protection to handguns kept in the home. And the question is as follows: Does the lawful carrying of a handgun outside the home represent a threat to community safety, which is what the fundraising email I received yesterday from a major GVP organization claims to be the case?

              The answer to this question is found in the dissent written by Associate Justice Breyer who cites numerous studies which have found that “the United States suffers a disproportionately high rate of firearm-related deaths and injuries” which is associated with the existence of at least 300 million guns in privately-owned hands. Breyer then goes on to cite the recent increase in mass shootings as a further reason why loosening CCW restrictions creates a danger, stating the fact that “64.4% of firearm homicides and 91.8% of nonfatal firearm assaults [in 2018] were committed with a handgun.”

              There’s only one little problem with the evidence which Breyer uses to support his argument that legal CCW is responsible for our excessive gun violence or that the spread of CCW to states like New York and California will only lead to an increase in violence committed with guns. And the problem is this: Overwhelmingly, gun violence is not committed by individuals who exercise legal access to guns either in their homes or in the street, particularly gun owners who exercise CCW with their guns.

              The Violence Policy Center has compiled a list of all shootings committed by individuals since 2007 who were identified as people who practice concealed-carry. The total to date is 2,203. Know how many gun homicides have been committed since 2007? Somewhere around 200,000. So, if we couldn’t walk around with a handgun outside our homes, what would this mean in terms of the rate of gun violence?  A drop in overall numbers of one percent?

              I’m afraid that Associate Justice Alito, for whom I have no particularly positive feelings, hit the nail on the head in his concurring opinion on CCW when he said: “Our decision, as noted, does not expand the categories of people who may lawfully possess a gun.” Which is exactly what’s really at issue here, namely, do we or don’t we like guns?

              I don’t like full-calorie soft drinks. I don’t like tobacco. I don’t like the guy who just roared past me in his Beemer doing 75mph in a 30mph zone. I think that my friends in Gun-control Nation should stop pretending they have no problem with the 2nd Amendment as long as gun owners use their guns in a responsible and safe way.

              What’s wrong with building a gun-control movement around the idea that guns are simply no good?  I’m ready to donate. How about you?

What Does the New Gun Bill Say About Guns?

Leave a comment

              I may be wrong, but I believe the only consumer product which requires someone to become a federally-licensed dealer in order to sell that product is a product called a gun. In fact, getting licensed from the federal government to sell guns was the reason that the government enacted its second national gun law in 1938, the first gun law enacted in 1934 defined what kinds of guns could be bought and owned.

              The 1938 law required that anyone who wanted to sell guns in some kind of businesslike transaction had to pass a background check and had to keep some kind of record or document which contained the name and address of the customer who bought a gun. When the government then passed the 1968 gun law and designated the ATF to be the agency that would regulate the gun business, that law required the ATF to design the requisite forms that would be used to create documentary proof of purchase, sale and transfer of guns, documents which then were expanded and revised when the feds passed their last gun bill requiring background checks in 1994.

              In addition to requiring gun dealers to utilize certain forms to hold information about the movement of guns (A&D Book, Form 4473), the 1968 law also mandated that this information could be verified and validated by the ATF with a visit to each and every gun shop. What was left unchanged in the 1968 and 1994 gun laws, however, was a definition of the word ‘dealer’ which made the ATF’s mission and responsibilities rather vague.

              Was a gun dealer someone who sold one of his personally-owned guns to someone else? Was a dealer someone who had to do a background check on himself when he purchased a gun for personal use? Could a dealer stop buying or selling guns even if he wanted to renew his federal gun license?

              These questions weren’t answered in any of the federal gun bills enacted to date, and from the text of the bill which received enough votes today to prevent a filibuster and now moves forward to a Senate vote, the questions are still unanswered in the soon-to-be fifth federal gun law.

              This is not an unimportant issue, for the simple reason that nobody can manufacture and then sell any kind of gun to the public unless that gun is first shipped to a federally-licensed dealer whose license then allows him (or her) to transfer that product to a customer in a retail sale. And what we keep hearing from Gun-control Nation is that much of the behavior which produces 125,000 intentional deaths and injuries from guns each year occurs because too many federally-licensed dealers don’t operate in conformity with federal gun laws.

These ‘rogue’ dealers sell guns to individuals who can’t pass a background check, they don’t list every gun that come into their shop, they don’t manage their inventory properly and somehow guns wind up where they’re not supposed to wind up – in the ‘wrong’ hands.

The problem, however, is that if I walk into a gun shop this afternoon, buy a gun and then a day or a week later decide that I don’t particularly like the gun and sell it to someone else, even if I lose money, I have still met the legal requirements for being in the gun business, whether I know it or not. In fact, in my state if I sell more than four of my personally-owned guns in a year, even if each transfer takes place in a gun shop and a background check is performed, I am considered a gun dealer and must hold both a state and federal license to sell guns.

Under Obama, there was an effort to define un dealers by setting a minimum number of guns that said individual would sell over a calendar year. Like all the other Obama gun-control schemes, this one went nowhere fast.

A redefinition of gun dealer happens to be included in the new bill. Under current law, someone is defined as a gun dealer if he sells guns “with the principal objective of livelihood and profit.” Under the new law, the relevant phrase will read, “to predominantly earn a profit.”

What if I open a shop selling motorcycles and sell guns at a slight loss in order to bring customers to my shop to buy a bike? After all, bikers tend to be gun nuts, so wouldn’t they flock to Mike’s Biker Shop if they could also buy a gun at a cheap price?

I’m being a little silly here but just want to prove a point. And the point is that Congress has perhaps done us a great favor in funding expanded mental health programs through this gun bill. What they haven’t done is made any serious change in the regulations governing the sale and use of guns.

Oh well, oh well.

Want to Live in New York City and Own a Gun?

1 Comment

              Last week it appeared likely that Congress would actually pass a new gun-control law for the first time since 1994. We’ve only had some 2.5 million Americans killed and injured by intentional shootings since the 1994 law was passed, so no big deal. But the real problem if the new law makes it to Joe’s desk is how my friends in Gun-control Nation will deal with the fact that they have been using the lack of new gun laws to raise money and now maybe the well will run dry.

              But not to worry. Thanks to an expected ruling from the Supreme Court on New York’s gun law, my friends in gun-control land will be able to make a big deal out of what is expected to be the Court’s overturning of the licensing procedure for walking around with a gun in New York which has been on the books since 1911 (the infamous Sullivan Law) and will make it more difficult for the other few, remaining states whose process for granting concealed-carry permits copies the New York law.

              As late as the mid-1970’s, there were only a handful of states which allowed residents to carry a concealed weapon, regardless of whether or not people applying for such a license could prove any kind of real need. Now we have gone to the other extreme and most states allow people to walk around with a gun as long as they can pass the background check which is required when they buy that gun.

              At present there are 25 states which have what Gun-nut Nation calls ‘Constitutional carry,’ which means that if you can legally buy a gun, you can also carry it around on your person, no questions asked. Another 18 states require some kind of concealed-carry licensing process but do not allow the cops to decide who can and cannot carry a gun. These states are referred to as ‘shall issue’ states.

              Finally, there are still seven Communist states (I happen to live in one such state) that still give police the final authority to decide whether someone can carry a concealed gun outside the home. These are known as the ‘may issue’ states, of which New York has always been the toughest state of all to convince the cops that you need to stick the ol’ shootin’ iron in your pocket when you leave your abode.

              So yesterday, the Fake News decided to inform its readers exactly what this New York law is all about, and here’s what they said in The Washington Post: “New York’s law requires a gun owner to obtain a license to carry a handgun. To get the license, they must demonstrate to local authorities a specific need for carrying the gun.”

              What the story doesn’t say is that the New York law which covers what a resident needs to do even just to buy and own a gun is almost as restrictive as the law which covers carrying the gun around town. And since I lived in New York City and went through the whole, stupid process that eventually allowed me to own a gun, here’s what the process involves.

              First, you have to go online and register an account with the NYPD.  Then you fill out an online application and upload some forms. Then you upload some more forms. These forms include a birth certificate, some kind of ID, some form which proves where you live, etc.

              You will then receive a message giving you an appointment to come down to the licensing division to be fingerprinted and to pay applicable fees. You must be ready to pay $340 for the license plus another $88.25 for the prints. You also must bring the original copies of all the forms you uploaded to the NYPD.

              Ready?  The cops have six months to decide whether to give you a license to own a gun and keep it in your apartment or home. Not to carry the gun around town. That’s a whole different procedure which is much more complicated and takes more time to complete.

              Now that you finally get your license to own a gun, you still need to apply for a permit to actually buy a gun. This involves sending in a request to the license division listing the type of gun, the caliber, and the manufacturer. After this application is approved, you are sent a purchase order which you then take to the dealer and exchange it when you buy the gun. But you’re still not done because you then have to bring the gun down to the licensing division and have it inspected by a cop to make sure it’s the gun model that was approved for your purchase order.

              Now you are finally ready to keep a gun in your residence. Great.

              Note that New York City does not require that a gun owner take any kind of test to demonstrate either proficiency with the gun or a knowledge of laws relevant to owning a gun. In other words, the NYPD couldn’t care less if you actually have any degree of ability to use a gun, as long as you have paid all the requisite fees to get a license to on a gun.

              Now if you want to explain to me how and why this process does anything to keep guns out of the ‘wrong’ hands, when I can go to a gun show in Vermont or Virginia, walk around, and ask this guy or that guy if the gun he’s carrying is for sale, then bring the gun back to New York City and either keep the gun or sell it to someone else, I’m all ears.

              And this is what Gun-control Nation believes is a law which will be overturned by the SCOTUS and make us all less safe?

Will the New Gun Law Reduce Gun Violence?

1 Comment

              There’s one little problem with the gun bill being debated in Congress. I’m not sure it has anything to do with guns. It does have a lot to do with community safety and resources for mental health and stuff like that. Which is a good thing, particularly the focus on mental illness. But guns?  I’m not so sure.

              In fact, the only specific gun issue which has been mentioned so far is the idea that anyone who wants to buy a semi-automatic rifle like an AR-15, would have to be 21 years old and go through a mor detailed background check.

              Now this provision was obviously inserted in the bill because several of the most recent mass shootings – Uvalde, Buffalo – were committed by kids who were not yet 21 years old.  But does this mean that young men under 21 years old are a particularly serious threat to go out, pony up a thousand bucks or so and go home with an AR-15?

              The kid who killed all those other kids at Sandy Hook Elementary School was 20 years old but used his mother’s gun. The young man who shot 12 people at the movie theater in Aurora, CO and wounded another 70 was 25 years old. And the shooter who rampaged through a building at Virginia Tech in 2007 was 23 years old but – oops – he used a Glock handgun to kill 32 students and staff.

              So why all this attention being paid to assault rifles when someone with a handgun can commit just as many murders in a few minutes’ time? I’ll tell you why.  Because the United States is the only country in the entire world which gives law-abiding residents to guns that were not only designed specifically as military weapons but are still carried by troops in the field.

              Bot only am I talking about the AR-15 rifle, but the same can be said about the handguns which are involved in most of the nearly 100,000 intentional gun assaults which occur in the United States every year.

              Where do you think the Glock pistol came from?  It was designed by Gaston Glock in response to an RFP issued by the Austrian military.  Where do you think Sig pistols come from? And as for all those pistols designed and manufactured by Smith & Wesson, their provenance was the handgun design shop at 1600 Roosevelt Avenue in Springfield, MA when S&W got serious in the 1i990’s about trying to take the police market back from Glock.

              Wait a minute, you say. You can’t keep Americans from buying those assault rifles and hi-capacity, semi-automatic pistols.  We have a ‘right’ to buy and own those guns. That’s what the 2nd Amendment says.

              In fact (note the use of the word ‘fact’), the 2nd Amendment says nothing of the kind. The 2nd Amendment says that Americans can ‘keep and bear arms,’ but it doesn’t define the word ‘arms.’ And when my late friend Tony Scalia wrote his 2008 opinion to explain what the 2nd Amendment really meant, he made a point of saying that it did not embody Constitutional of any kind for what he referred to as ‘weapons of war,’ which happen to be a pretty good description of guns made by companies like Glock, Sig, and S&W which are used not to kill Bambi but are used to kill people like you and me.

              And while we’re at it, let’s not indulge in all that nonsense about how a gun is a self-defense tool or device or whatever other word Gun-nut Nation uses to avoid using the word ‘gun.’ Because what’s a defensive act of violence happens to be an offensive act of violence to someone else. And in case you think I’m just being contrary to prove a point, spend a little time reading the research on homicide done by Ira Wolfgang where he discusses how half the murders committed in Philadelphia occurred because the victim first assaulted the perpetrator, and the other half occurred because the guy who killed the other guy couldn’t keep his mouth and/or his hands to himself.

              The gun bill being debated in Congress will provide money for programs we need, in particular programs which might make it easier for everyone to access resources for mental health. But as long as both sides of the gun debate hold their discussions within a context which has little, if anything to do with how to get all those military-style guns off the street, this new law will effectively do what the previous gun laws have done, to quote Grandpa: ‘gurnisht helfen’ (read: nothing at all.)

How Do We Reduce Gun Violence? Some Doctors Dont Have a Clue.

5 Comments

              Almost thirty years ago, before Columbine, before Sandy Hook, before Uvalde, two physicians cum researchers, Art Kellerman, and Fred Rivara, published studies which identified guns in the home as a medical risk. And the risk wasn’t some fever or rash. The risk was death.

              Know a more serious medical risk?  I don’t.

              Not only did Kellerman and Rivara define the medical risk caused by access to guns, but the risk wasn’t qualified or lessened if the guns were safely stored, or if the gun owner was more ‘responsible,’ or anything else. Guns equal medical risk. Or to quote Grandpa, ‘prust und prushit’ (read: that’s enough of that.)

              What has happened since those articles appeared?  The gun industry and their supporters have denied the whole thing, but why would they do anything else? They want to sell guns. And tobacco companies want to sell cigarettes. Fine. Good for them.

              On the other hand, you would expect that the medical and public health communities would respond to the identification of guns as a health risk by saying what they are supposed to say about any risk to health, which is – get rid of the risk.

              So, here we go again with another debate about guns provoked by yet another savage, mass assault in a school, and what are we hearing from doctors and public health researchers?

              We are hearing that we have to find some ways to prevent those mass slaughters from happening but oh, by the way, law-abiding adults should still be able to own a gun.

              I have been listening to this same bullsh*t now for more than twenty-five years, and frankly, my friends in medicine and public health, along with my friends in all those gun-control organizations who say the same thing should be ashamed of themselves.

              You don’t identify a risk to health and then try to figure out a way to make people healthier but still keep the risk in place.

              Am I missing something here? I don’t think so.

              Ands the best of all are those physicians who go around claiming that we can reduce the risk from guns by getting together with gun owners and coming up with a ‘consensus’ approach that will protect everyone from getting shot but at the same time allow potential shooters to keep their guns.

              Do the so-called experts in medicine and public health who promote such nonsense actually believe here’s a single gun nut out there who thinks that Mike Bloomberg is all of a sudden interested in protecting their ‘rights?’ Give me a break.

              Yea, yea, I know that Americans own somewhere between 300 million and 400 million guns. So what? Most of these guns happen to be guns that have never figured in any kind of gun violence at all. The guns which cause gun violence – semi-automatic, hi-capacity handguns and rifles – weren’t even sold until the late 1970’s or early 1980’s. 

How many of those 400 million guns which comprise the current civilian arsenal were manufactured before 1978?  Plenty. And let’s not forget that guns aren’t like cars. They don’t wear out.

And by the way, ATF already makes a distinction between guns that are used for killing human beings as opposed to guns that are used for hunting and sport.  Want to import a gun from overseas which doesn’t meet the ATF’s requirements for being a ‘sporting’ gun? You can’t.

Why do you think Glock makes their guns in Georgia, Sig has a factory in New Hampshire and Beretta has a factory in Accokeek, MD? That’s where they make the kinds of guns that are used to kill and injure 300 Americans every day. Sorry, but Grandpa’s old shotgun rusting away in a corner of the garage isn’t a threat to health.

              Either we get rid of the guns which are a risk to health, or we don’t. And it’s about time that the physicians and public health researchers who posture themselves as ‘experts’ on gun violence stop looking for easy answers which will do nothing and start making arguments based on the facts.

Who’s Afraid of the NRA? Nobody, That’s Who.

Leave a comment

              So, here’s the good news about the Uvalde massacre, if there can ever be any good news about an event as dreadful as what happened almost two weeks ago at the Robb Elementary School.

              For the first time in my memory, the organizations which have been in the forefront of efforts to reduce gun violence (e.g., Everytown, Brady, etc.) can’t complain that their efforts are being frustrated because of the power and influence of the NRA. If anything, what is remarkable about the debate which has broken out over Joe Biden’s call for a new gun law is the virtual absence of the NRA.

              Recall what happened after Sandy Hook, when Wayne LaPierre went on national TV a week after the slaughter in Newtown and gave a fiery, no-holds-barred speech castigating liberals, Hollywood video producers, inept parents and 2nd-Amendment enemies as the reasons for mass shootings, and called for all schools to be immediately turned into armed camps.

              This time around, America’s ‘first civil rights organization’ released a two-paragraph statement which contained the usual ‘thoughts and prayers’ bromide but then went on to thank everyone in Uvalde who tried to help out after the massacre occurred. Period. Nothing more.

              The NRA held its annual meeting in Houston, but attendance was far below the number of people who usually show up for this event, and there were probably more folks demonstrating outside the Convention Center during Trump’s speech than there were folks inside the Convention Center listening to him whining away.

              The NRA’s post-Uvalde silence has been so noticeable that GOP candidates running in this year’s election cycle have been forced to rely on advice from a variety of organizations, all of whom are saying that any talk about Uvalde is not going to work. The basic argument being made by conservative political consultants and messaging experts is to avoid talking about the 2nd Amendment or gun ‘rights’ until the media decides that gun violence is no longer a topic of interest and ramps up stories about something else.

              Which means that if Gun-control Nation wants to press for a new gun law, they won’t be able to use the NRA as their favorite stalking horse – they’ll have to fashion and promote their gun-control argument on its own terms.

              They also won’t have Donald Trump to kick around anymore, because following the primary results in Georgia, his so-called ‘victory tour’ seems to have run out of steam.

              Meanwhile, the NRA happens to be quietly celebrating two victories this week which just a few months ago seemed to be beyond their wildest dreams. During the annual meeting in Houston, Wayne LaPierre was re-elected as Executive Vice President, a move which just about everyone had been saying wouldn’t take place. But it did take place, and all those stories about Wayne-o’s million-dollar wardrobe and his over-the-top vacation jaunts have disappeared.

              More important was a decision from a New York State judge which denied an attempt by the state’s Attorney General to dissolve the NRA because the organization’s alleged financial mismanagement had not created ‘public harm.’  A lawsuit seeking relief for the siphoning of monies and what the judge referred to as the ‘greed’ of Wayne-o and others can proceed, but the group’s basic legal existence remains intact.

              Meanwhile, I continue to get my weekly email from Wayne-o reminding me to renew my Golden Eagle membership which gets me a lovely, plastic wallet card which I can show to a cop as I hand over my driver’s license because I was driving too fast. I can also buy a couple of golf shirts from the clothing catalogue which just arrived and this coming weekend I can drive 20 minutes to a gun show at Sturbridge and hang out at the NRA booth.

              Know how many public events the Brady Campaign is holding anywhere near where I live between now and Labor Day? None, as in a big, fat zero.

              I have been a member of the NRA for 66 years. It’s very simple. I like guns. I am also a registered Democrat and if the Democrats and their allies in Gun-control Nation manage somehow to pass a new gun-control law, I’ll still vote the blue team every single time.

              On the other hand, I’d also like to see the gun-control argument being made on its own terms simply because I’m against violence in any and all its forms. Aren’t you?

Want To Reduce Gun Violence? Let the Lawyers Do The Work.

1 Comment

Know that joke about lawyers? The one about how 10,000 lawyers under the sea is a good start? I’ll bet the joke is being told as a serious hoped-for response down at the Glock factory in Georgia because of the lawsuit filed yesterday in New York.

The lawsuit accuses Glock of marketing their guns in a way which violates a New York State law that holds companies responsible if the use of their products creates a ‘public nuisance,’ which in this particular case was the nuisance created by a guy who walked onto a New York City subway car in April and started blasting all over the place. One of the victims of that senseless act is the plaintiff in this suit.

What’s interesting to me in this legal action is that the defendants are both Glock USA, and the parent company overseas. Which means that every foreign gun manufacturer who views the American gun market as a place to sell their products may now rethink their plans. And since most of the semi-automatic pistols which are used in gun assaults are made by foreign companies like Sig, Beretta, and Glock, or are manufactured overseas by American companies like Springfield Arms, this lawsuit could have repercussions which go far beyond any challenge to Gun-nut Nation until now.

The truth is that for all the talk about a new gun law that will keep guns out of the ‘wrong’ hands, there has never been one piece of research which actually proves that any legal gun-control law makes much of a difference in terms of reducing how many people are injured or killed with guns.

Today we learn that the legal team which sued Remington after Sandy Hook has begun a process which may end up in a lawsuit against the company – Daniel Defense – that made the gun used in last week’s slaughter at the Robb Elementary School. If legal suits can find gun makers liable for how their assault rifles were used to kill and injure both adults and kids, guess what?

The same kinds of lawsuits can be used to go after companies like Glock, Sig, Beretta, S&W, Springfield, and all the other gun makers whose products are used in the more than 125,000 deaths and serious injuries which are caused each year with their guns.

When all is said and done, nothing works better to change the dynamics of any product market than a situation in which producers know that the product they are making and selling can cost them more time, trouble, and money than what the product is worth.

Remember a wonderful candy called Chunky?  Remember how many Chunky Candy Bars you could find on the candy shelf after stories began to appear which claimed that the candy made you sick?

So, maybe instead of all those lawyers at the bottom of the sea, we should dump all the assault rifles somewhere far offshore.

If the government gave everyone a thousand bucks for their AR, the total cost would be about 15 billion bucks. Right now, the federal budget is $7 trillion. So, adding another 15 billion is chump change, especially what you figure we’ll save from not having to bear the medical and emotional costs of the kids and adults shot with those guns.

And while we’re at it, we can also start dumping the Sigs, the Glocks, the Berettas and all those other handguns which are about as ‘sporting’ a gun as Leonard Mermelstein is a dog.

Leonard Mermelstein is my cat. You can see him right here: Catalog | TeeTee Press

Want to Know What to Do About Gun Violence? Ask Joe Biden. He Knows.

3 Comments

              So now that the thoughts and prayers have begun to fade away, the politicians can begin posturing about voting some kind of law to control gun violence. And believe it or not, the only public official who seems to not only have a grasp on the reality of gun violence, but what to do about it, is the so-called ‘demented’ President of the United States.

              Joe was asked yesterday how he felt about the law which may get passed in Canada that will effectively end legal sales of handguns, or at least make it almost impossible for a law-abiding Canadian resident to buy such a gun.

              And to his credit, and to the discredit of just about every other member of both the GOP and Democrat(ic) Congressional caucuses in D.C., Joe hit the nail right on the head by saying that he didn’t want to ban all handguns, but only those guns which, as he put it, have no ‘rational’ or ‘sporting’ basis for being used. And his press secretary qualified this comment by saying that Joe was talking about guns which shoot a 9mm bullet or above.

              And what was the response to Joe’s comment from Fox News, which will no doubt now become the standard litany about gun-control from Joe Manchin and his new-found friends in the GOP? Fox actually had the balls to state, and I quote: “Handguns in 9mm are the most popular in the United States and are not considered “high-caliber” by most firearms experts.”

              Which ‘experts’ did Fox consult to come up with this load of sh*t? The 9mm round is only the most popular handgun ammunition for military use, the United States having switched from the 45-caliber round to the 9mm carried by all NATO forces back in 1976.

              The point is that everyone gets worried and concerned about gun violence when the media elevates a story like what happened last week at Uvalde to the front page, or the lead on the nightly, TV news. But every day somewhere around 260 men, women and children are killed or seriously injured in this country with guns, and a California law-enforcement study of the calibers in crime guns found that the 9mm round showed up more than 50 percent of the time.

              Nobody uses a 9mm, semi-automatic pistol which holds a magazine with sixteen rounds of military-grade ammunition and uses that kind of gun to shoot a bird out of a tree, or pop one into Bambi’s rear end. Poor Bambi.

              Guns that are designed to hold and fire 9mm ammunition are designed for one purpose – to kill. And I don’t mean Bambi. I mean you – and me.

              Now the gun industry and its political sycophants on both sides of the aisle can talk all they want about using a gun for self-defense. They can even say that Americans have a God-given ‘right’ to defend themselves with a gun because you might want to dispute the meaning of a Constitutional phrase, but who would dare argue with God?

              I would not-so-politely suggest that all these nincompoops who keep telling us they want to obey what God says about self-defense, should pack up and move to Iran. Then they can have daily discussions with the Almighty even though in Iran you can’t legally own a gun.

              Back in 1998 I went out to Buffalo, scalped a ticket in front of the football stadium, and went inside to watch the extraordinary Buffalo defensive tackle, Bruce Smith. The two guys sitting next to me were from Canada, and during halft[MW1] ime a small plane flew over the stadium pulling a banner that advertised a local gun shop.

              One of the guys from Canada pointed at the banner, laughed, and said, “We know we’re in the United States right now.”

              It’s time the United States caught up with the rest of the civilized world and stopped pretending that walking around with a semi-automatic pistol or an assault rifle is the same thing as going to the local supermarket and buying a loaf of bread.

              It’s not. And at least Joe Biden understands what this is all about.


 [MW1]E

How To Protect Your Child in School.

4 Comments

              If you are the parent of a school-age child, you must be thinking today about what you should do to protect that child if, God forbid, some crazy nut might crash into your child’s school with a gun and start shooting the place to smithereens.

              So, here are three things you might consider to keep your kid safe and sound.

              First, you might want to home-school your child, which is obviously the most basic way to avoid dangerous threats in any public space. We don’t know for sure, but the estimates for the number of children in what is referred to as parent-directed, home-based education is somewhere around 1.5 to 1.8 million, a number which apparently had been growing over the last decade.

              Obviously, the home-schooled population included nearly all school-age children during the worst part of the Pandemic years, and this was a national response to the fear of kids being infected with Covid-19 until the virus was more or less brought under control.

              But the home school ‘movement, as it is known, is more about keeping your kid’s brain free from all those noxious (read: liberal) ideas like gender-free bathrooms, critical race theory, gun control and all those other attempts to break down the traditions and values that use to make America – great!

              Okay. So now you have your kid at home but there’s still the question of personal protection in case one of those evil people, as Donald Trump called them in his NRA speech, tries to break into your home.

              My advice is go out today and buy an AR-15 or some other assault rifle because if Joe and the rest of the tree-hugging crowd have their way, you won’t be able to get your hands on an assault rifle pretty soon. Even some of the Republicans are waffling on this one a little bit, so don’t waste another minute and don’t forget to stock up on ammunition and a couple of 40-shot mags.

              Let’s face it. You’re not going to blast a hole in the head of a bad guy with just one shot. You need to pull the trigger until he’s not standing on your porch any more.  And if one of the rounds you fire misses its mark and goes through the head of a neighbor across the street, you were just doing what God says you should always be allowed to do, which is defend yourself, your family and your home with deadly force.

              So now we have your child safe at home and being protected by you or maybe your wife sitting in the Lazy-Boy with an AR-15. But what if even in that situation, some evil person is able to get into your house and doesn’t kill anyone but manages to get off a round or two and injures someone inside your home?

              It just so happens that today is the last day of – ready? – National STOP THE BLEED Month. Only in the United States could we actually celebrate a month devoted to buying and then, if necessary, using a medical kit which can keep someone alive even when they have a bullet that tore through their body or is still sitting in their arm, their leg, or even their head.

              You can buy one of these kits for as low as $38 bucks. And if you think these kits aren’t exactly what you need to complete your home-based protection strategy, you should know that the kits are endorsed by the American College of Surgeons (ACS) along with some of their affiliated groups.

              Now the fact that a bunch of physicians are making a buck for themselves by promoting this kind of nonsense, which is just another riff on how the gun industry has been promoting assault rifles through ramping up our worries and fear about mass shootings, is not just disgusting but should stop right now.

              The physicians who continue to support the ACS are just as despicable as the doctors who did TV ads back in the 1950’s promoting the sale of Lucky Strike cigarettes.

              Want to protect your children and yourself from someone blasting away with an AR-15? The Congress should do what the town of Highland Park did in 2013 when it passed a law which said that you couldn’t own an assault rifle and live in that town. And the ban was upheld by the Supreme Court.

              I have no problem with anyone who wants to own an AR-15. You can buy a nice, one-bedroom condo in Aruba for two hundred grand.

Maybe We Need a New Memorial Day.

2 Comments

Every year we are supposed to spend a day saluting the men and women who died in defense of our country, a tradition which started after World War I.

I was born and raised in Washington, D.C., and I can recall Memorial Day parades in the 1950’s with the veterans of World War I still able to march down Constitution Avenue to where they had some speeches and then everyone stood around and greeted each other.

We still have the parades except the old veterans are from the Viet Nam War. And instead of standing around after the parade, everyone goes shopping because that’s the way we celebrate what makes America great — buy some crap we don’t need and stick it in the garage along with all the other crap we don’t need.

Anyway, on Tuesday there will be a little ‘Orange Day’ event in Gloucester, MA where a brief ceremony will take place to remind everyone about the ongoing war that we have in our streets — the Gun Violence war which seems to be heating up more and more these days. More Americans have been killed by domestic gunfire in the last thirty years than were killed in every conflict since World War I, and we seem hell-bent to add another 30,000 or 40,000 to that total this year.

Maybe what we should do is put together a petition which will make Memorial Day a national holiday not just to remember the men and women who have been killed overseas, but also to memorialize the men, women and children who are gunned down on our nation’s streets or in our nation’s schools, or wherever they are being gunned down.

Enough with the ‘thoughts and prayers,’ okay?

Older Entries

%d bloggers like this: