Lockdown America and School Shootings

It’s a lovely spring day today, sunny and cool, yet a dark cloud hovers in the distance, if only in my mind, because of yet another horrendous school shooting that killed at least 19 children and two adults in Texas. Democrats are calling for more gun control, Republicans like Ted Cruz are going the “thoughts and prayers” route: in short, nothing is really changing in a society saturated by violence.

Too many of our schools have become battlefields, and I don’t think turning them into mini-fortresses is the solution. I do know we need less militarism in America, less hate, and more hope and help.

We are losing too many young people to guns, to drugs, to suicide, to despair. Something is deeply wrong here in America, and we need to have the courage to face this and to effect change. We need to become a less violent society, a less materialistic one, a less hateful one.

Update:

One of the go-to words to describe mass murderers like this is “evil.” He was “evil.” Like he was some kind of monster, like a Balrog from “The Lord of the Rings.”

What he did was monstrous, but he’s not an ancient demon from the underworld. He remains human, and he needed certain tools to murder people this quickly, and the tool he chose was guns. (One report I saw said he used an assault rifle; another said a pistol. Maybe both?)

We need better ways to identify humans with murderous intent, but there are also ways to limit their access to the tools they use to murder so many people so quickly.

Let’s not obsess about “evil” and use that metaphysical term to paint this as an issue that’s beyond legislation and community action.

Update 2:

About the Second Amendment and what the Founders intended, here’s my take:

To this historian and retired military officer, the intent of the 2nd amendment was clear: In the 1780s, America relied on militia men rather than a large, permanent, standing army for self-defense. For that to work, militia men needed to keep arms in their homes then bear them in militia training in the field. Back then, arms meant smoothbore muskets along with a few rifles. (Rifles were more accurate but much slower to reload.) Americans on the frontier and in rural areas also used guns to ward off Indian attacks and for hunting and sport.

What the Founders couldn’t foresee was the growth of a huge, permanent, military establishment that rendered militias obsolete. They also couldn’t foresee a one-shot smoothbore musket morphing into an AR-15 with a 30-round clip (or more). Nor could they foresee an epidemic of gun violence in America, with each year’s toll exceeding 30,000 people killed by guns. In 2020, the number exceeded 45,000!

And the Founders couldn’t foresee the growth of a powerful lobby, the NRA, representing the gun industry and the enormous profits made by that industry in selling guns to Americans in quantities that defy belief.  Nor could they foresee how the issue of gun violence would be so politicized, with one party embracing guns as a core part of its identity, while the other party fired blanks back at it while posturing as if they were firing real bullets.

So here we are, paralyzed politically (if not literally) by guns, with little hope of immediate relief other than a few noises about improved background checks. Some toothless bill will probably be passed, Congress will turn to other issues, and the people will be lulled into an uneasy and unhappy silence until the next mass shooting that kills children. And then we’ll repeat the process of doing basically nothing because at some level guns ‘r’ us.

Bracing Views

cartoonW.J. Astore

Five years ago, I remember talking about lockdown drills (or “active shooter drills”) with colleagues at Penn College.  Such drills were voluntary.  Basically, the drill involved locking the classroom door, moving students to the back of the classroom, and having them hunker down, away from windows, while keeping silent so as to avoid detection by a shooter roaming the halls.

I was against these drills.  I thought they added to the fear, and I chose not to do them.  But maybe I would do them today.

After one shooting massacre (I can’t recall if it was Virginia Tech in 2007 or Sandy Hook in 2012), locks were added to the classroom doors.  In theory, if I heard gunshots, I or one of my students could jump up and lock the door before a shooter got in.  But what if a determined shooter shot the lock out?

What a…

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31 thoughts on “Lockdown America and School Shootings

  1. Congress took no action after Sandy Hook, when even a larger number of young children were massacred. They will take no action after this – and that enrages me. If we treat children as disposable, what future awaits any of us?

    Surveying both right-wing and left-wing discussions result in the predictable responses: left-wing “gun control”; right-wing “better policing and mental health screening”. No politician will state the obvious: all options must be evaluated in light of a violent society that is growing more so every year.

    Look to $44 billion for a lost war in Ukraine (irrespective of where the money is actually going to be spent), which for the same monies could assist with any number of domestic problems; the worship of violence in all our entertainment and sports; the breakdown of civil order in a society that offers no hope for an increasing number of our citizens.

    The US has chosen Thanatos as its god. That death instinct applies to societies as well as individuals.

    Liked by 4 people

  2. Since long before the mass murders in Buffalo and Uvalde, the biggest questions i have had for those calling for “Gun Control” ~ however defined ~ are:

    1. If the manufacture and sale of certain weapons is outlawed, and/or the possession of any weapon by certain people is forbidden, what are the chances that a “War on Guns” will be any more successful than our Wars on Drugs, Poverty, and Terrorism [International and Domestic]?

    [Along the same lines as: If Roe v Wade is overturned, does anybody actually, really, and sincerely believe that there will be no more abortions by Women who live in states where it is illegal.]

    2. Do You Controllers plan to volunteer to lead ~ on the ground and in the streets ~ any campaign to attempt to physically seize and confiscate all [or even some] of those weapons out there from their legal owners? And what Army are You going to use in order to even begin to think about doing that?

    This is shaping up to be a great time to get into the business of providing armed security for students, staff, and teachers, worshippers and preachers, and shoppers and workers, eh? One can only wonder how many folks out there at this very moment are contemplating a Buffalo or Uvalde of their own.

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    1. It seems like the only “gun control” measures that have a ghost of a chance are stricter background checks and so-called red-flag checks.

      There are roughly 400 million guns in America: more guns than people. More than 20 million are AR-15 style “assault” weapons. I’d say we lost control of gun proliferation a long time ago.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. I remember the active shooter tutor trainings at Penn College and the contemplation of how we could possibly barricade and defend the Writing Center–which involved not one door but potentially three. Actually, there was more than one training because they shortened the protocols later. Initially, it was “get out, call out, hide out, keep out, take out.” I now forget what was removed from the list, but see that “Run, Hide, Fight” became the new watchwords. The same methods were included; it was just condensed–to be easier to remember? As an older (okay, old!) female adult, it was intimidating/daunting/frightening to consider the prospect that I might have to face the prospect of facing an armed intruder hellbent on gunning down any target in their way. I cannot imagine the fear the trainings could engender in children, individuals who have not learned of their own mortality and may not ever have faced a death of anyone or anything close to them.

    Personally, I faced that at the age of ten when my primary caregiver for eight years, my grandmother, died suddenly. That loss changed my life forever. What are these poor kids feeling today when they are realizing the possibility that their parents could be the ones crying because they are the ones killed in one of the places they should be safe? And children are often not as naive/blind as we may think. Unless they are living in a complete bubble, unlikely in any location or community (remember the Amish school shooting in 2006), they are aware children die. Now, they have to worry it might well be them.

    I heard a statistic today regarding the demographic of the school shooters as to average age–18. I just searched for other similarities: predominantly lone, average age 18, usually some connection to the school target (haven’t heard one for this recent event), and often give some sort of advance warning of their intent (https://theconversation.com/what-we-know-about-mass-school-shootings-in-the-us-and-the-gunmen-who-carry-them-out-183812). Often, it seems that past bullying played a role as well.

    Flags lowered to half staff is not enough action, and no, I don’t have a solution to give. Bill, as you so profoundly and clearly note, “…Something is deeply wrong here in America, and we need to have the courage to face this and to effect change. We need to become a less violent society, a less materialistic one, a less hateful one.”

    Liked by 2 people

    1. “And so Lockdown America is now our reality.”

      It’s interesting that You wrote that back in 2018, Colonel; two years before a different kind of Lockdown for a different kind of assailant became our new reality.

      Liked by 2 people

      1. Yes, that word, lockdown, which came from our prison-industrial complex, has become shorthand for “safety” when faced by a violent human intruder, or, for that matter, an infectious virus.

        Lockdown is a repressive measure in which we cede freedom and autonomy in the name of “safety.” It’s another fine Orwellian term that has come to define our increasingly oppressive American moment.

        Liked by 2 people

        1. How’d Ben Franklin put it?

          “Those who would give up essential Liberty, to purchase a little temporary Safety, deserve neither Liberty nor Safety”

          He’s the same guy who told that lady in Philadelphia: “We have given you a Republic. If You can keep it.”

          Liked by 1 person

  4. You wrote: “Something is deeply wrong here in America, and we need to have the courage to face this and to effect change.”

    Something has been deeply wrong in America for a long, long time, Colonel. But the first problem is that nobody can agree on:

    1. Exactly what it is that is “wrong.”
    2. What sort of changes should be effected.
    3. Who would be the best people to make those changes happen.

    And You concluded: “We need to become a less violent society, a less materialistic one, a less hateful one.”

    It’s hard to argue with that, tho there are those who do and will. But that raises a couple of immediate questions:

    1. How and Why are we a violent, materialistic, and hateful society; and How, Why, and When did we become one?
    2. What can and needs to be done to reduce the violence, materialism, and hatred?

    Which takes us right back to the first problem stated above: Who gets to determine the answers to those two questions; and on what basis do they get to be the determiners?

    And finally, it is my belief that all those too many young people America is losing to guns, drugs, suicide, and despair is the price this Nation is beginning to pay for all the young [and old] people we have killed, maimed, orphaned, widowed and widowered, and rendered homeless, helpless, and hopeless in our “Forever War” in Afghanistan, Iraq, Libya, Syria, Yemen, Somalia, Equatorial Africa, and elsewhere. Including most recently, Ukraine.

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    1. Hi Jeff: Your last paragraph — I feel there is a connection between the violence we export and the violence that is “home grown.” There has to be, however tenuous or complex or fuzzy.

      Really, what I said was said by Martin Luther King Jr. in his speech on April 4th, 1967, against the war in Vietnam. I’m not saying anything original. MLK had the diagnosis; he had some solutions too. Exactly one year later, he was killed.

      Liked by 2 people

      1. i am very familiar with Dr King’s Speech, Colonel. As i wrote last month:

        REMEMBERING APRIL 4, 1967

        In his latest post to TomDispatch.com, retired U.S. Air Force Lieutenant Colonel William J Astore asked “What Would It Take for the Pentagon Budget to Shrink?” [https://tomdispatch.com/what-would-it-take-for-military-spending-in-america-to-go-down/ ]

        And he concluded: “We have become George Orwell’s Oceania, where war is peace, surveillance is privacy, and censorship is free speech. Such is the fate of a people who make war and empire their way of life.”

        A nation and a people get the government, the system of governance, and the governors that they deserve. And for Our sins, we have the GoatRope that is American Politics today; and that has been for a long, long time. And the disasters that its foreign, economic, environmental, and domestic social policies and programs have been, are, and promise only to continue to be.

        Monday, April 4, 2022, was the 55th anniversary of the day that the Doctor and Reverend Martin Luther King, in a Church in New York City, declared War against America’s War in, on, and against the People ~ and Their Land, Country, and Nation ~ of Vietnam in his epochal oration ” Beyond Vietnam: A Time to Break Silence.”

        To hear and perhaps listen to it, go to https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AJhgXKGldUk. To read it: https://www.crmvet.org/info/mlk_viet.pdf. And an excellent survey and analysis of it is available at https://original.antiwar.com/david-bromwich/2008/05/16/martin-luther-kings-speech-against-the-vietnam-war/ .

        It was on this day that he delivered a declaration that ~ in many ways ~ was, is, and forever will be the most important and impactful statement he ever made. Beyond even his “Letter From Birmingham City Jail,” “I have a Dream,” and “I’ve been to the mountaintop.”

        And in Breaking That Silence on that day in April 1967, Dr King initiated [and, in fact, initialed] his own Death Warrant; to be filled out in full exactly one year to the bloody day later ~ April 4, 1968 ~ in a place called Memphis. The morning after his Mountaintop report.

        Dr King began “Beyond Vietnam” with the simple statement: “A time comes when silence is betrayal. In Vietnam, that time has come for us.”

        i would suggest that if silence is indeed betrayal, then that time has come for those of us who are concerned about America’s [and indeed, Humanity’s] collision course with Reality and the grim future that that present course promises.

        And near the end of his speech, Dr King made “incandescently clear” one bottom line, bullet-hits-the-bone Truth: “A nation that continues year after year to spend more money on military defense than on programs of social uplift is approaching spiritual death.” And fifty-five years later, here we are.

        The only way that this nation’s military and other criminally wasteful budgets are ever going to go down is if and when a critical mass of American Citizen/Taxpayers DEMAND that that happen, and refuse to accept its Not happening. Which, of course, is not very likely to happen any time soon. Or to happen at least soon enough to avert the looming catastrophe.

        How many candidates for federal office in this year’s election are calling for a reduction on defense spending? Any?

        A prolonged War in Europe; global food and fuel shortages and supply line chokepoints; a resurgent, alien strain of COVID; inflation reaching hyper- proportions; a climate increasingly manifesting increasingly powerful and destructive weather events…. .

        One is reminded of REM’s classic: “It’s The End of The World As We Know It.” But also, as Patti Smith put it, that “The People Have The Power…”: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5iwK0IFgZyQ .

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  5. One of the go-to words to describe mass murderers like this is “evil.” He was “evil.” Like he was some kind of monster, like a Balrog from “The Lord of the Rings.”

    What he did was monstrous, but he’s not an ancient demon from the underworld. He remains human, and he needed certain tools to murder people this quickly, and the tool he chose was guns. (One report I saw said he used an assault rifle; another said a pistol. Maybe both?)

    We need better ways to identify humans with murderous intent, but there are also ways to limit their access to the tools they use to murder so many people so quickly.

    Let’s not obsess about “evil” and use that metaphysical term to paint this as an issue that’s beyond legislation and community action.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Of course this issue is not beyond legislation and community action Lt. Col.
    Imagine having a President that works for the people and who’s willing to make hard decisions.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yes. Kiwis are far more sane. You’re also lucky not to have the NRA and people who seem to think that the Second Amendment is tantamount to life and freedom and love.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Of course the Second Amendment can be repealed, or amended by due process.
        America is awash with 400-million guns thanks to 2A. The dumbest Amendment the founders dreamed up.
        Sadly 2A is never going to be amended, let alone repealed, by due process. The deck is stacked against that.

        Like

    2. Imagine having a nation of Citizen/TaxPayer/Voters who DEMANDED that. But not only of their President, but of every elected politician at the federal, state, and local levels.

      Liked by 1 person

  7. A few years ago now I tried to write an essay on 2A. In my formative years trying to understand the America I lived in……. Here’s what I wrote for better or worse.

    “The Second Amendment in the Bill of Rights was melded together from several proposals and simplified into twenty-seven words. This brevity is often blamed for the enigmatic meaning that has fueled the recent debate on guns, government, and individual rights. Lawyers, judges, historians, and political scientists delve repeatedly into the 18th century world of the Framers in attempts to ascertain the intended meaning of the Second Amendment.

    There are several opposing interpretations of the Second Amendment. For many years it was generally accepted that the Framers intent of the amendment was strictly martial and should be seen as only ensuring the continued funding and arming of state militia’s.

    The 2008 Supreme Court decisions of District of Columbia v. Heller, 554 U.S. 570 and McDonald v. Chicago, 561 U.S. 3025 specifically addressed two of the most contentious interpretations of the Second Amendment. Individual ownership of guns for self-defense was recognized as a Second Amendment right by the Supreme Court for the first time.

    In 2010, McDonald v. Chicago then added that the Fourteenth Amendment incorporated the Second Amendment extending the amendment’s reach to state governments.

    Both of these decisions were split five to four and dissenting opinions highlighted the difference in interpretations of the Second Amendment that persist. The history and debate about the Second Amendment continues. Indeed, if history has taught us anything it is that this amendment has not been easily or clearly defined since its ratification under the Bill of Rights. A future Supreme Court case could overturn these two 2008 and 2010 rulings and the Amendment reverted to the old interpretation.”

    What grade do you give me Professor?

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    1. Unfortunately, Dennis, the Second Amendment is not the only part of the Constitution [Amendment or Main Text] that has not been “easily or clearly defined.”

      And that has led to all sorts of opportunities for American government at every level ~ but especially at the federal ~ to become a vehicle for so-called “special interests” to use that government to increase either their wealth, their power, or both.

      Liked by 1 person

    2. The great thing about being a retired professor is that I don’t have to grade papers anymore. 🙂

      Seriously, to this historian and retired military officer, the intent of the 2nd amendment was clear: In the 1780s, America relied on militia men rather than a large, permanent, standing army for self-defense. For that to work, militia men needed to keep arms in their homes then bear them in militia training in the field. Back then, arms meant smoothbore muskets along with a few rifles. (Rifles were more accurate but much slower to reload.) Americans on the frontier and in rural areas also used guns to ward off Indian attacks and for hunting and sport.

      What the Founders couldn’t foresee was the growth of a huge, permanent, military establishment that rendered militias obsolete. They also couldn’t foresee a one-shot smoothbore musket morphing into an AR-15 with a 30-round clip (or more). Nor could they foresee an epidemic of gun violence in America, with each year’s toll exceeding 30,000 people killed by guns. In 2020, the number exceeded 45,000!

      And the Founders couldn’t foresee the growth of a powerful lobby, the NRA, representing the gun industry and the enormous profits made by that industry in selling guns to Americans in quantities that defy belief.
      Nor could they foresee how the issue of gun violence would be so politicized, with one party embracing guns as a core part of its identity, while the other party fired blanks back at it while posturing as if they were firing real bullets.

      So here we are, paralyzed politically (if not literally) by guns, with little hope of immediate relief other than a few noises about improved background checks. Some toothless bill will probably be passed, Congress will turn to other issues, and the people will be lulled into an uneasy and unhappy silence until the next mass shooting that kills children. And then we’ll repeat the process of doing basically nothing because at some level guns ‘r’ us.

      Liked by 2 people

        1. Lt.Col Astore, of all the blogs I peruse daily on the internet yours is the one I look forward to reading the most. And the opinions of your regular readers.

          1. I agree with, respect and admire your stance on the bloated out-of-control US military. That was what attracted me to your blog in the first place.

          2. A totally agree with you that the US Presidency has become a bit of a joke. Teleprompter readers for Congressional bought and paid for politicians. I used to be a lefty – but more and more agree with Jimmy Dore that every Democratic politician in Wa DC right now is a useless POS working against a progressive agenda.

          3. And you and I agree that America badly needs sensible gun control laws to be promulgated at the Federal level. Sadly, it will never happen.

          But Bill, you will never convince me that the USA is not one of the greatest countries in the World.
          In the 41-years I lived, worked, and raised a family in Seattle I had opportunities, experiences and a quality of life I could NEVER have had in any other country. I was so lucky to live in the USA. And have daughters, grandkids, and many friends who live there.
          Thanks for what you do.

          Like

          1. Thanks, Dennis. It’s not my intent to persuade my readers that America isn’t great or that it’s great. My intent is to challenge people to think critically and creatively about certain issues that I think are important and that I have some ability to write about due to my education, experience, etc.

            I’m sure there are many issues that are vitally important that I largely ignore. I ignore them not because I think they’re unimportant but rather because I don’t know enough about them to speak intelligently.

            Liked by 1 person

        2. From the article you linked, Dennis:

          “He [Montana Senator Tester – D] makes decisions on legislation based on what is best for Montana, and that’s why he doesn’t support an assault-weapons ban.”

          How on earth could any sane person come to the conclusion that a ban on assault weapons ISN’T best thing for his constituents? That’s some seriously warped thinking.

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            1. Exactly. If he got $5 million from a group of professed gun-toting white supremacists with manifestos like the Buffalo shooter’s, he’d say they were very fine people, and vote per their wishes. Thus favoring expediency and mass insanity over actual concern for the majority of his constituents.

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  8. How about this issue Lt. Col? I got very unpopular( and that’s a euphemism) at our kids high school for constantly complaining about this…. I was literally black listed from school meetings!
    Your thoughts and experience on this?
    .
    “The No Child Left Behind Act of 2001 significantly changed how military recruiters reach teenagers. Section 9528 mandates public high schools give military recruiters the same access to students that college recruiters get, including their personal contact information. Schools became gold mines for recruiting “future soldiers.”

    Recruiters at my high school in Fairfax County, Virginia always set up shop in the cafeteria. For the next two hours, they would sit through the four different lunch periods and give their spiel to whoever was curious enough to stop at their station.

    Recruiters use their omnipresence on campus to build relationships and trust in all kinds of different ways. They may offer to chaperone homecoming events, timekeep at football games, or even give lectures in history or government classrooms.

    All the while, they paint a glamorous picture of life in the military. Promises of scholarships and a chance to earn honor and respect serving around the world are very compelling to 17-year-olds, especially those without a lot of other options.

    That’s key. Recruiters deliberately exploit the financial and social insecurities of teenagers to enlist more soldiers.

    A RAND Corporation study, for example, found that nearly 57 percent of students at public high schools with JROTC programs relied on free or reduced-price lunch — about 10 percent more than schools without them.

    Sometimes the disparity is even starker. Education Week reporters in Connecticut found that recruiters made 10 times as many visits to one largely low-income school as they did to a nearby affluent school.

    Finally, four years of studies by the Resistance Center in western Massachusetts found that Black, Hispanic, Indigenous, and low-income students were overrepresented among the enlistees most often put in harm’s way.”

    https://www.commondreams.org/views/2020/08/16/military-recruiters-dont-belong-high-schools

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I don’t have direct experience with this. But you’ve probably heard of “the poverty draft.” Recruiters know where to look and what schools to go to. They’re not recruiting at private schools or in rich neighborhoods.

      Personally, I think this is wrong, but who cares what I think?

      Liked by 2 people

      1. We had a “poverty draft,” Colonel ~ aka the “All Volunteer Army, Navy, Etc” ~ long before Nixon ended the formal, official Draft, back in 1973.

        How many American Youth were drafted out of private [or public] schools and rich neighborhoods during Vietnam? As opposed to how many American Youth from those places had their various and sundry “Exemptions”?

        Exemptions as in: Either for being in “school,” married, or, like Dick Cheney, having “more important things to do”?

        Kids like ~ just for starters besides America’s preeminent War Criminal Cheney [along with Henry Kissinger, Donald Rumsfeld, Condoleezza Rice, Phillip Zelikow, and, particularly, Zbigniew Brzezinski] ~ Clinton, Biden, Limbaugh, and [of course, who can ever possibly forget?], Corporal Bonespurs?

        All That and Them, as opposed to: How many Americans who were drafted between 1966 and 1972 came out of Inner City Shitholes? Or were from what was later to be termed “FlyOver Country”? Or, to state it differently and from the same bottom line:

        HOW MANY AMERICANS DID NOT HAVE THE NECESSARY CONTACTS ~ BE THEY PERSONAL, PATERNAL, POLITICAL, AND/OR SIMPLY THE FINANCIAL WHEREWITHAL ~ TO PULL OFF WHAT THESE [AND WHAT MANY OTHERS AMONG THE BABY BOOMERS “LEADERS” OF TODAY AND THEIR SPAWN] SUCCESSFULLY PULLED OFF?

        And eh and heh: If it makes You feel any better, i care what You think. Colonel. If i didn’t, You wouldn’t be getting this rant.

        Have a Great day. ~ jeff

        Liked by 1 person

        1. All true, Jeff. Though there were a few (emphasis on few) from the rich and privileged who did serve.

          Didn’t Trump say that his “Vietnam” was STDs?

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  9. In UPDATE 2, Colonel, You wrote: “Seriously, to this historian and retired military officer, the intent of the 2nd amendment was clear: In the 1780s, America relied on militia men rather than a large, permanent, standing army for self-defense.”

    Was the intent of the 2nd Amendment to ensure that the new Nation ~ the United States of America ~ had the necessary self-defense against some foreign invader?

    Or was the intent to ensure that the States had the means and mechanisms to defend themselves against the government of the United States?

    Given the fact that the American Colonies had just defeated the most powerful Empire on the planet in its War of Secession [misnamed a “Revolution”], the biggest concern ~ at least of the Anti-Federalists ~ was that the new powerful, centralized federal government fashioned under the new Constitution could ~ under the proper circumstances in the hands of the right people ~ turn just as tyrannical as King George. The concern was NOT that America needed to be able to defend itself against another nation’s invasion.

    Thus, the primary purpose and function of a “well-regulated milita” ~ again, at least to the Anti-Federalists ~ was to provide the States with the capability to defend themselves against Washington, DC.

    And while the Founders could not have foreseen “the growth of a huge, permanent, military establishment that rendered militias obsolete,” at least some of them certainly saw the danger of a national, federally funded and controlled standing army: the beginning of every military-industrial-political complex, and virtually every dictatorship.

    Nor ~ obviously ~ could they have foreseen AR-15s, gun violence and its politicization, or the NRA. But they most very definitely saw the threat of a tyrannical national government emerging. Just as we have seen increasingly clearly the reality of that emergence over the past 20+ years since 9/11, and now The Pandemic.

    You concluded with: “Congress will turn to other issues, and the people will be lulled into an uneasy and unhappy silence until the next mass shooting that kills children. And then we’ll repeat the process of doing basically nothing because at some level GUNS R’ US.” [EMPHASIS added.]

    How and Why do You think that happened, Colonel? That guns, indeed, r’ Us? Does at least part of it go back to our being here in the first place only thru an armed ~ with guns and microbes ~ invasion of our own?

    Does it have to do with the fact that there has not been a War in this country for 160 years, and what may very well have been merely the FIRST American Civil War?

    It will be interesting to see if any mass protest movement emerges out of all this.

    Probably the most effective form of protest would be if every Kid in this country absolutely, positively refused to go to school until their Parents and all the rest of the so-called Adults running this country get up off their asses, pull their heads out of the same place, and actually, really DO something about this Bullshit.

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    1. Jeff: I think it was both.

      Certainly, the Founders worried about investing too much power in a federal government. They also worried about standing armies. They wrote an amendment specifically against the quartering of troops. The Bill of Rights stressed individual liberties; the thrust of it was to limit federal power. Sadly, our federal govt keeps growing and usurping power, e.g. the PATRIOT Act.

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