“Responsible” Gun Laws

Matthew McConaughey holds a photo of Alithia Ramirez, 10, killed in the Uvalde mass shooting

W.J. Astore

The bottom line on gun laws in the USA is, surprise, profit. What matters most is not banning any guns, including military-style assault weapons. There are already more than 20 million AR-15-type assault weapons in the hands of Americans, with more being sold legally every day. They and their related gear (ammo, ammo magazines, and so on) are a big source of profit to American gun makers and gun sellers, so you can be sure that those guns will be protected, unlike the victims of them.

To illustrate this, two stories popped up in my email today. The first, from CNN, is a quick summary of where we stand on gun control measures in Congress:

The current changes to gun laws under consideration include hardening school security, providing more funding for mental health care and ensuring that juvenile records can be considered when a person between the ages of 18 and 21 wants to buy a semi-automatic weapon. Federal incentives for states to pass so-called red flag laws are also being discussed. However, despite the ongoing talks, it remains unclear whether there will be enough Republican support to push the legislation forward.

Note that Orwellian term: the “hardening” of school security. Schools are now being talked about in military terms as “soft” targets for mass shooters. Naturally, the solution isn’t to deny shooters their assault weapons. No: let’s turn every school into a “hardened” fortress, with more fences, cameras, locking doors, and armed guards (perhaps with AR-15s?). How long before our schools are indistinguishable from our prisons?

You’ll note, of course, that none of the “new” gun laws being considered by Congress will reduce the number of guns in circulation. Gun sales will continue to soar. When you think about it, guns now have more rights in America than people do.

The second story involves a Hollywood celebrity, Matthew McConaughey, who was born in Uvalde, Texas, and who’s been working with the Biden administration in the cause of “responsible” gun control. He’s called for “universal background checks, raising the minimum age for purchasing an AR-15 to 21, a waiting period for purchasing AR-15s and the implementation of red flag laws.” These steps are better than nothing, but again they will not impact the profit margins of gun makers/sellers. Even so, they are likely to be judged too radical by Republicans in Congress.

President Biden has called for a ban on new assault weapons, but it’s simply empty words. He knows a ban stands no chance of getting through Congress. If the Democrats really wanted to accomplish something, they’d get rid of the filibuster in the Senate, but they’re not about to do that, especially since they’re likely to lose control of the Senate after the November elections.

Speaking of Joe Biden, I saw this hilarious headline at NBC News today: “Biden’s gaffes might actually be his selling point.” The gist of the op-ed is that Biden often misspeaks and sounds both angry and confused, but these qualities make him “authentic” to voters, therefore “let Biden be Biden” and don’t try to handle or edit him.

That’s where we’re at as a country. Guns have more rights than people and our president is to be embraced for all the gaffes he makes. What a country!

183 thoughts on ““Responsible” Gun Laws

  1. Democrats are going to get the US sensible gun control Laws just like they got the US Universal Health Care and a $15.00 minimum wage Bill. They don’t call them the “Do Nothing Party” for nothing. And I am a lefty.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Profit! Must be why my suggestion for an AMMO card to ration ammunition purchases has gone over like a lead balloon. (After all guns don’t kill people, bullets kill people.)
    The AMMO card would be similar to the SNAP card that rations food for women and children.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. In response to a Facebook query regarding what steps to take to make schools more safe, my sister-in-law posted “metal detectors and armed security,” the “hardening” you reference. I immediately thought of prison as well. I wouldn’t want my children being in a prison/militaristic/biased atmosphere, and that’s what school is becoming. Additionally, we can all see how having armed security resource officers is working in some instances. I imagine many parents are wishing they had other options for education at this point. It has to be a horrible feeling to face every day wondering if your child will be alive at the end of the day.

    I homeschooled our two youngest, one 5th through 12th and the youngest 1st through 12th because I didn’t care for some of the messaging prevalent in the district at the time, including special dress days: “We will wear red to show support for our troops” as one example. I had no issue supporting our troops; my husband is a Vietnam veteran, and we all know how well that “conflict” worked out. My problem was in making it almost a mandate for the kids. I also was not thrilled with the religious expression allowed in certain classrooms, i.e., my daughter’s second grade classroom where the teacher used the explanation of the coloring and shape of candy canes during a craft project at Christmas. Granted she was a minister’s wife, but I still felt it was not appropriate in a school setting. The final straw occurred just as my daughter was entering 4th grade, and 40 parents filed a petition to have two teachers removed for verbal and/or physical abuse; I didn’t know about that petition at the time, or we likely would have removed her then. That was a bad year, with stomach aches, headaches, tears, nail biting, all related to the school environment. She was a superior honor roll student, but it wasn’t worth the negative effects. Today, I would see even more of a reason to take the home education option. I was fortunate in that I could be home, and I know so many are not able to even consider it, would be capable of it, or even want to take the step.

    And, yes, our kids were still socialized, the big complaint of many who see homeschoolers as children locked up in the home with no outside influence, and they both did well in college. It would have been great if I had been more math friendly though!

    Unfortunately, I have no good suggestions or solutions to the dilemma of the gun culture. i wish I did. I’m sure it’s all going to get much worse before it gets any better–if improvement is even possible with the gun lobbyists and the mindset of many weapons owners. I just see that many children are likely to grow up terrorized from the active shooter drills that have become necessary because of the culture.

    Liked by 3 people

  4. I read where Senator Lindsey Graham wants to recall separated/retired military people like me to serve as school defenders.

    https://thehill.com/news/senate/3511198-graham-it-is-time-to-mobilize-our-retired-and-former-service-members-to-secure-schools/

    So maybe I could teach a course or two while carrying an AR-15 just in case a shooter breaks in. Guess I’ll always have to be locked and loaded since a shooter could strike at any time. I’m sure old retired vets like me will never make a mistake, and I’m sure none of us have any mental issues or demons of our own.

    By the way, what do school cops do all day when they’re not facing (or failing to face) active shooters? Are they baking cookies in Home Ec or maybe helping the football coach?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. They could hire people who are familiar with guns, defense, and such things who could also teach. Perhaps waive the normal rules about requiring lots of time in schools of education before they become certified to teach. Obviously it might break up the normal routine of how teachers are hired but it might be worth it. I’m sure the people who staff the schools of education would object but I wonder what parents would think is more important. Normal teacher credential routines or the safety of their children.

      Like

      1. I agree with WJA’s conclusion that making schools into prison-like enclaves is a bad idea, I believe on many levels.

        That said, if armed guards are absolutely necessary, I suppose using ex-military personnel makes sense, if the possibility of PTSD or flashbacks were minimal.

        As an

        Like

        1. [sorry—comment posted before I was finished]

          As an education major, however, I have despaired for 40 years over the dumbing-down of this country and the lowering of education standards. Waiving education/subject matter expertise and certification in favor of military/gun specialist creds seems to be going much too far. It would be the tail wagging the dog to the extreme. If teachers aren’t versed in education principles and subject matter, what’s the point of a school?

          Liked by 2 people

          1. Some states have had to adjust education school requirements for teachers in the STEM areas of public education. Otherwise there wouldn’t be enough teachers in those subjects. How about if advanced education includes school protection as a subject matter? Instead of getting a masters in education theory and practice one could get a masters in school and student protection. Presumably the extra teacher pay that accompanies a masters would also apply to the school protection degree. Most of the teachers I’ve known went for their masters for the additional pay anyway. So that’s the incentive.

            Liked by 1 person

            1. That’s about the most depressing comment I’ve read yet, frankly. I think it’s looking at education through the wrong end of the telescope.

              Teachers are supposed to educate students in subject matter that will broaden their horizons and impart knowledge for use in life. STEM subjects are a great example there.

              But for teachers to get advanced degrees in protecting students….that just seems so wrong. It’s not up to them to learn, say, military-type tactics. Again, it’s the tail wagging the dog, imho.

              Liked by 1 person

              1. Well it wouldn’t be changing what the students receive. Presumably the person acquiring an advanced degree in protecting students would also be teaching a subject matter. Why shouldn’t a teacher’s education curriculum adjust to the times?

                Like

                1. Curricula have changed with the times for centuries; nothing wrong with that. But school protection is not an educational subject; in other words, teachers aren’t going to teach it in class (or at least, I don’t think so). Again, I don’t believe that it’s the role of teachers to learn to harden their schools. I think that’s fundamentally warping the purpose of a teacher, just as arming teachers is.

                  I firmly believe that the solution needs to come from the other end: teachers shouldn’t have to learn combat tactics because such tactics should never be necessary. Hardening schools, arming teachers, training teachers in SWAT maneuvers….all these things concede that we as a society have totally lost control in this country. They mean we’ve given up, and there will never be a return to sanity. We’ve gone much too far down the path of all violence, all the time. We should stop accepting that mass shootings are inevitable.

                  Liked by 1 person

              2. I taught college for 15 years. My job was to teach history. I also taught in a military setting for six years. I can’t imagine teaching while carrying a gun.

                Teachers are teachers. They’re not SWAT team members. And, as we know from Uvalde, even cops trained for violence are not always ready to risk their lives confronting a well-armed shooter.

                Liked by 2 people

              3. People carry concealed weapons in many situations. Probably more than we know, because the guns are concealed. I knew a woman who carried a .45 while she was a greeter at one of the big box stores. Certainly against the store rules but she wanted to protect herself if push came to shove. Such is life. In Israel apparently people carry guns in public all the time. Maybe even in schools. Perhaps one of our media outfits could do a story about that. Except self defense isn’t part of their preferred narrative so chances are we won’t see it.

                Like

                1. “Such is life.”

                  …..in our gun-obsessed society.

                  I can’t speak for Israel, because I don’t know the laws or conditions there. But if, as I’ve been told, all able citizens are required to serve in the military, at least those who are carrying guns have been trained in their use. And if one excepts Israeli/Palestinian exchanges, I’d be willing to bet that, proportionately, there are many fewer mass shootings in Israel than in the U.S. If so, I’d have no data to suggest a reason for that difference, but it must have something to do with the culture.

                  Like

              4. We’re a violent society I think. Gun ownership is in part a response to that rather than a cause. We could discuss theoretically why we’re an advanced country with an underdeveloped country’s level of violence, but that’s a different topic.

                Like

  5. As Commander-in-Chief of the US military has Biden any options on Executive Orders he can issue that would solve the mass-shootings problem?. Maybe like, “People may only possess an automatic rifle if they are a member in good standing of an authorized well regulated Militia necessary to the security of our free State. National Guard? I wonder. Or some other Executive Order. Let’s use our brains in a new way of thinking; come up with something even better! I doubt if one-half of Congress has the capability. Where did the “Statesmen” go?

    Like

    1. Being Commander-in-Chief of the military only makes Biden Commander-in-Chief of the military. It doesn’t make him Commander-in-Chief of the Constitution or Commander-in-Chief of the citizenry. Although I think he sometimes forgets that.

      Like

      1. Alex, you are suggesting that as Commander of an annual $800 billion armed force Biden has no Executive Order he can instate to solve the shooting problem. Nothing?

        Like

        1. Unless there’s a shooting problem within the armed forces then I would say no. Nothing. Personally I think Biden should lay off the Executive Orders anyway. I don’t have a whole lot of confidence in his reasoning powers or his decisions.

          Like

        2. Ray, the US federal government has three parts. They are the Executive, (President and about 5,000,000 workers) Legislative (Senate and House of Representatives) and Judicial (Supreme Court and lower Courts).

          The answer to your question lies within. The answer is “no”.

          Like

  6. One thing several recent school shootings had in common was that the school cops refused to do anything, instead waiting for the SWAT team to arrive, which typically takes much longer; well past the time when a typical shooter might run out of ammunition. In a very recent case they stood outside a classroom waiting for the shooting to stop at which point they waited another half hour or so just to be sure. I understand that they didn’t want to get shot at (I wouldn’t either which was why I spent my career at a peaceful desk job) but still it would seem that the job description would include that sometimes you might be in personal danger and that you would be willing to risk it for the children. Perhaps rather than focusing on the guns themselves or the rights of millions of gun owners who don’t do school shootings we might agree what qualities we really need in the forces who protect schools. Perhaps rather than looking to police forces to man school protection squads we might look to people who served in the military. They would be much more used to risking their lives in a live fire zone.

    Like

    1. There is a Texas government publication on training of school security personnel. I didn’t read the whole thing, but found something in the opening statement that should be the rule for all law enforcement officers. It warns the reader that if he/she cannot place the protection of innocent lives above his/her own then another line of work should be considered for a career. This should apply to all public servants who carry firearms…innocent life comes first and to be out in society is to be in a community of innocents. “I was afraid for my life” should never be an excuse for using a firearm by an official who in signing on should be putting that fear aside. Would there be enough willing to take that pledge, to be willing to die even at the hands of a genuine threat rather than kill, even if accidentally, an innocent? I think very few would be applying for the job.

      Liked by 1 person

  7. Oh, and I forgot one other Democratic Party failure – failing to get a reduction in military “defense” spending, and ending American’s hegemonic interventionist foreign policy.

    So with the Republicans set to resume power in the perpetual political cycle, going bankrupt with medical bills, ever increasing gun violence, working for slave wages, and seeing your taxes consumed and wasted by a bloated and out of control military acting as the Worlds self-appointed policeman is baked in the cake for most Americans. Indeed these have become increasingly the defining features of the nation that calls itself the shining city on the hill.

    If you as an American Citizen can no longer tolerate this, and envisage a better life, immigration to another country has to be something you need to seriously consider.

    Liked by 2 people

      1. Australia, any of the Scandinavian countries, New Zealand, Canada, Spain,- the list goes on Alex.
        Are you sure your last sentence is true is 2022?

        Liked by 1 person

        1. If I am to believe the line of people coming across the southern border, certainly. Two million since Biden got elected is what I’m hearing.

          Liked by 1 person

          1. To retire in Godszone you’ll need to be at least 66-years old and maintain a minimum investment of NZ $750,000 (about U.S. $524,835) in New Zealand for two years. You’ll also have to prove an annual income of at least NZ $60,000 (about U.S. $41,987), and you’ll need another NZ $500,000 (about U.S. $349,890) to live on.

            https://www.enz.org/retire.html

            Sorry Lt. Col, I’m just a little short on cash!

            Like

              1. Yes they do. Here’s the first question to see if you qualify. “Are you a close personal friend of the Prime Minister or other high government official? If you answer ‘no’ then tear up your application and good luck with your life.”

                Liked by 1 person

                1. @ALEX
                  The Corruption Perceptions Index (CPI) is an index which ranks countries “by their perceived levels of public sector corruption” – Wiki.

                  New Zealand – 2nd least corrupt.
                  USA – 27th least corrupt

                  Like

    1. There doesn’t seem to be a leftist anti-war movement any more. Was it all about the Vietnam era draft after all? The only Congressional opposition to the administration’s Ukraine policy is from the Trumpian Republicans.

      Like

    2. My wife and I did exactly that. We are expats living in Thailand. Don’t get me wrong Thailand has it’s problems with corruption, a useless law enforcement contingent etc but at least there have been no mass shootings a la the US. Nice weather, great medical care, a lower cost of living with just about all the amenities you could want. We have no plans to return to the lunacy of the US.

      Liked by 2 people

  8. With respect to “hardening” schools, if we turn schools into combination prisons/police stations to make them “safe,” shooters determined to hurt children will go elsewhere, e.g. playgrounds, sporting events, the beach, the movies, who knows where. Recall that the Buffalo shooter went to a supermarket in a Black neighborhood. Should we harden all supermarkets?

    Unless we “harden” every “target” in America, which is obviously impossible, this “solution” is basically a way to ensure more funding for guns and surveillance equipment and probably more police as well.

    Wouldn’t it be much easier and more direct to deny easy access by shooters to assault rifles and almost endless supplies of ammo in the US?

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Very few crimes are committed with assault rifles. I think many if not most crimes with guns are in big cities and between gangs. An easier way to control crimes with guns is to control gangs. But nobody in the cities want to do that because it has racial overtones. Besides in most cities gun laws already exist and are relatively severe. It’s just that the gangs ignore them. Why institute new laws when criminals already ignore existing laws?

      Like

      1. Alex: Maybe you’re just yanking my chain here, but I’ll take a shot (pun intended):

        Assault rifles seems to be the preferred weapon for mass shootings, whether in Buffalo or Uvalde or elsewhere. There is also no practical reason to have them. They are useless for hunting, and for home protection a pistol or shotgun is better, not to mention a good baseball bat. Why not ban them? Because they are immensely profitable for the gun makers and sellers.

        Why can gangs get guns so easily? Because America is awash in guns.

        Yes, criminals tend to ignore laws — and we can prosecute them when they do.

        Consider the logic of your statement: “Why institute new laws when criminals already ignore existing laws?” By that argument, we’d have no laws to govern cyber-crime because “criminals already ignore existing laws.”

        Don’t worry: nothing, I mean nothing, is going to change in the USA that will restrict your rights to own all the guns and ammo you want. Isn’t America great?

        Liked by 1 person

        1. Yep, our friend ALEX is pulling our chain Bill. But not to worry.
          Pretty soon he’s going to run out of clichés! He’s used them all eh!
          I’m waiting for ” a good guy with a gun………Oh never mind!
          And of course he’s saving his parting shot for last: The 2nd Amendment protects the 1st Amendment”.

          Liked by 1 person

          1. It’s OK. I welcome all readers and commenters unless they get abusive etc.

            We can all learn from each other — assuming we want to learn.

            Liked by 1 person

          2. Dennis, not yanking your chain. Just the other side of the discussion. You can dismiss it as cliches if you want to. Perhaps in NZ you don’t have differences in opinion. Everybody must conform to the government’s official opinion. OK, NOW I’m yanking your chain (smile). But I’ll stop. It’s actually not my style.

            Like

        2. Actually people hunt with AR-15s all the time. And use them for home protection. Millions of people have bought them for protection, target practice, or as a hobby. They’re great for adding accessories to them. Why not ban them? Because in the U.S. we don’t ban things just because some people in the government want to ban them. Beto O’Rourke to the contrary. If he wanted to seize people’s guns he should have joined the Gestapo. I guess he was born too late.

          Like

    1. Very biased report obviously. Wasn’t New Zealand the place where the Prime Minister locked down the entire country because they had one case of Covid? Doesn’t sound like they are really into citizen’s rights and all that. New Zealand and Australia both came from English rule, where the Lords and later the peasants had to squeeze their rights (such as they are) from Kings. We in the U.S. were formed under a different set of rules, thank God, with basic human rights that come from God rather than are granted by a King.

      Like

      1. Alex my friend, do not for one minute think that the US has more rights than New Zealanders and Australians, and granted to them from a “God”!
        Your US rights come from the same place as ours. From your governance. Squeezed from your leaders. (Who BTW were slave holders when your Constitution was written!)
        You might be interested in what George Carlin thinks about your guaranteed precious rights!

        Liked by 1 person

        1. The Bill of Rights was set up to hinder the (normal) process of government becoming more autocratic over time. To me it’s useful if it even slightly hinders that process. Of course if the entire government is dedicated to enlarging government power at the expense of the citizenry and if the citizens don’t fight that process then the Bill of Rights won’t mean much of anything. The government will be successful and the citizens will be the losers. As for slavery, it was well established throughout the world in the 18th century and before, the Constitution abolished it for the U.S. in the 19th century, and if some rulers wanted to reestablish it in the future the Constitution would make that more difficult. So that’s good.

          Like

  9. tnxis our NZ-based den. george carlin is a rare gem. we need more george carlins to help guide us toward the realization that life can be more salubriously lived w/ the entertaining, shrewd, and quick-witted comedy of straight-talking, clear-headed iconoclasts like carlin. his insights reveal the nescient balderdash of america’s cherished myths. carlin’s myth-busting routines should be the cherished instead!

    Liked by 1 person

      1. If only we could leave nature alone. Humans are all about exploitation. And we have untold power. If we ever use nuclear weapons in a big way, it won’t just be humanity that suffers.

        Liked by 1 person

        1. Personally I think Carlin was funnier when he was younger. Perhaps he’s changed (don’t we all?) or perhaps he just ran out of funny material.

          Like

      2. tnx, alex., but our internet here on the philippine island of oriental mindoro seems reluctant to download carlin’s performance. our connections to the web are intermittently ‘kissed by kismet’, at which nexus we become connected to the global e-community.

        Like

  10. Well, the House passed a few gun rule changes, like raising the age to buy an assault rifle to 21, but the bill is going nowhere in the Senate due to the filibuster. Thus it’s all theater. The Democrats get to pose as “responsible” without producing anything.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Much if not most of Washington is theater nowadays. I had a business acquaintance who testified before a House panel some years ago. He said that when the cameras were on the Congressmen they acted serious and businesslike. When the cameras weren’t on them they acted like a bunch of clowns.

      Liked by 1 person

    2. I think that, absent the will to abolish the filibuster, pretty much everything the Dems do could be termed “theater.” They’re using that excuse to cover a multitude of sins.

      Like

    1. People who own guns don’t think they should have to submit to the government to decide their “need” on their gun purchases, whether for protection or just for their hobby. Why should they? I have a friend who collects porcelain figurines. Should the government have to decide whether she “needs” her figurines in order to allow her to buy them? That’s not what this country is about. At least so far it isn’t. Maybe someday our government will be more like that of Vietnam, or China, or North Korea. But not yet.

      Like

      1. ? Obviously, guns and porcelain figurines aren’t equivalent. Guns kill: that is their nature. Cute little figurines aren’t designed to fire bullet after bullet to wound or kill.

        Liked by 1 person

          1. Mostly a declaration of need is a city requirement. Big cities like NYC, Chicago, etc. I understand they typically refuse licenses based on need. “You say you need a gun for protection? Denied. We have police to protect you.”

            Like

        1. Most civilian guns are not used to kill. Most are used for hunting, protection, or target practice. Or just to work on as a hobby. Although there are some anti-gun politicians who have said that when they hold a gun they can think of nothing better to do than kill people. And they’re still in office. Fortunately not in an adjoining state.

          Like

          1. Alex, who are these “anti-gun politicians” who hold guns and then say they want to kill people? Names, dates?

            Like

            1. Forget it. I’m not setting myself up for a libel suit. Not in this climate. Look around for politicians who insist that the only purpose of an “assault” rifle is to shoot people. And then someone hands them a rifle for the newscast. Bad idea. Me? I take them at their word. Hopefully the guns aren’t loaded.

              Like

              1. Alex: Do you think a politician is going to sue you for libel if you accurately quote him/her in a comments section for a small blog like mine? I’m just looking for names to support your assertion. Surely you have some?

                Like

              2. Alex, can you think of any gun owner who does not consider him or herself responsible and fully capable of using the gun properly? Can you think of any human being that you would be willing to guarantee would never get angry and do something they would regret later?

                Liked by 1 person

      2. I think the difference here is that it’s pretty difficult to kill someone with a porcelain figurine, unless it’s massive and you land a lucky blow. Guns, however, are specifically made to kill living creatures. And that’s an insurmountable difference, I would say.

        Like

        1. If porcelain figurines are outlawed, only outlaws will have porcelain figurines.

          The only thing that stops a bad woman with a porcelain figurine is a good woman with a porcelain figurine.

          I could have a lot of fun with this.

          Liked by 1 person

            1. Women all over the U.S. are buying guns for protection. If some guy tries to rape you on a dark night, it will do no good to throw a figurine at him.

              Like

              1. Alex how about stating some RELIABLE statistics to back up your many arguments? Opinions are really worthless without evidence to support them.

                Like

                1. @MIKE.
                  I figured out that debating pro-gun advocates like our friend ALEX is about as futile as debating Bible Truth advocates. You never win. As soon as you debunk their 1st theory, they move onto the 2nd, and the 3rd, and the 4th……. until they finally wear you out. They will never give up. Its a mindset invariably fueled by a cult-like fetish. To accept that they might be wrong is very threatening to them. Hence the need to “win” every debate. And on internet forums like this one they will debate you for days, weeks even! I used to be lured into that trap but nowadays, in my old age, there are much better ways to waste your time on the internet! LOL

                  Liked by 1 person

                2. @Dennis. I couldn’t agree more. It’s the same mentality used to justify Trump/trumpism and his merry ban of lunatics.

                  Liked by 2 people

                3. ‘bang-on-the-target’ den [pardon the paronomasia]. one can waste and weary oneself w/ plausible, nay incontrovertible, evidence to the contrary, yet bible-beating buffoons and gun aficionados will persist w/ their fantasies, myths, and prevarications until all one wants to do is retire to her/his connubial chamber, have a stiff drink, or ‘shoot’ her-/himself in the head, just to reduce the decibel level of their cacophonies and achieve oblivion from their psychopathic manias. whatever drives their excitabilities must be critical to their personal senses of well-being and security, based on whatever fountainhead ‘triggers’ their emotional attachments.

                  Liked by 2 people

              2. No I’ve played that game too. I offer statistics and I’m told, naah that’s from a gun group, or naah that’s from the far right or naah that’s from foxnews or blah blah blah…… Unless people truly have an open mind things like statistics fall on deaf ears.

                Like

              3. Alex, we can all imagine bad things happening, dangers and threats. There are certainly instances that anyone can cite of a bad thing coming true. That in large part drives “the news” that fertilizes fear in the imagination. (bias admission: 23 years spent in TV here, I never watch it and don’t own a TV)

                Can you think of any reason that everyone who is an adult and not judged mentally ill, should not be armed? According to many, the Second Amendment is cited as encouragement to being armed, gun ownership being a positive social good. Would you advise me to arm up for a better America tomorrow that it is today, or maybe to survive in an America going rapidly downhill?

                If we take it as true that only a good man with a gun can stop a bad man with a gun, would you admit that a good man has only to decide on an action to harm another to become, instantly and with no warning, a bad man? That is, a good man can go bad all by himself? We know, from our need of a justice system, that it happens all the time.

                How are good intentions at the time of purchase of a gun and into the future to be determined? The gun seller would properly deny any ability to know that. The police would look at a record, see no bad history and properly deny the ability to know that. The buyer would say his intentions were good and he could be totally honest.

                The sale takes place and the ability to instantly kill or injure at least one person (even if only oneself) is obtained by another person. The buyer, the seller and the authorities can all look and each other and agree there is no problem. The future is silent on the purchase, being able to speak only when it becomes the present.

                Another one is added to millions upon millions of weapons, each one potentially deadly, as the future becomes the present and good men go bad. Far from being a tyrannical force ready to seize firearms, the government carefully protects the possession of all those weapons, not due to any fear of a host of gun owners, but by the entirely peaceful and effective procedure known as lobbying. Is this society protecting itself?

                Liked by 1 person

                1. And, as one commentator put it, someone can be a good man with a gun right up to the minute he murders someone. That is, absent an arrest record or other red flags, no one knows the intent of anyone who buys a gun.

                  Like

                2. @DENISE DONALDSON
                  We always see “lawful” gun owners portrayed as more virtuous than criminal gun owners.
                  They maybe, until they shoot and kill someone – and become a criminal.
                  To me the term “lawful gun owner” is meaningless and not useful.

                  Like

                3. Exactly, Dennis. The recent Buffalo and Uvalde shooters were both “lawful” gun owners. Until they weren’t. That’s why the currently proposed weak regulation measures, even if passed, won’t do much. But I guess even a small start is better than nothing. Maybe.

                  Like

                4. @DENISE DONALDSON
                  Thank you for playing “moderator” on our precious site today my dear.
                  When this site becomes rancorous I will be going elsewhere.
                  I do this for fun and entertainment.
                  If I wanted rancour and rubbish – I could go down to the local biker bar.

                  Like

                5. You have no idea how welcome your comment is, Dennis. Getting tired of the rude attacks of late, more than one of which has been directed at me..

                  I appreciate your unfailingly polite commentary.

                  Like

                6. @DENISE DONALDSON
                  Sadly, I am a doomer and gloomer on US gun control.
                  This current uproar will be quickly replaced by the next hot ticket that sells TV minutes and newspapers.
                  As it was for the previous 22-mass shootings.
                  And 400-million guns will still around – many in the hands of crazy people.
                  This horse has long since escaped the barn – I’m sorry.
                  Cheers

                  Like

                7. Oh, I’m certainly no optimist! Read in the NY Times that there have been 38 more mass shootings just since Uvalde. I haven’t fact-checked that figure, but I wouldn’t be surprised.

                  Like

            2. Depends on the size of the figurine.

              Seriously, any woman who wants to legally purchase a firearm for protection may do so. I don’t think anyone is against this.

              Like

              1. A lot of the newer gun models are small for personal protection. To put in a woman’s handbag, for instance. Women in California aren’t allowed to buy them. Neither are the men, actually. California regulators gone amuck.

                Like

              2. My wife owned a Lady Smith & Wesson .38 revolver. Smaller grip; lighter weight; only five shots. Nice gun.

                Like

              3. Any figurine that is used effectively will be subject to more control. Politicians will wail about “assault figurines” and every time a figurine is used to kill somebody it will be on the front pages for a week. Hollywood celebrities will appear onstage holding pictures of people they never knew and talk about how something, anything, needs to be done. Otherwise out-of-work Texas politicians will pledge that “we’re coming for your figurines”. I can see it all now. Just as if it happened before.

                Like

    1. Mass media starts with their solution (more gun control), applies it to every shooting, and backs up their solution with presentations that fit their solution. It’s too bad we don’t have mass media that doesn’t have a preferred narrative to sell. And it certainly is a sales job.

      Like

      1. Despite all this “gun control,” gun sales are soaring in the US. There are now 400 million guns in America, including more than 20 million AR-15-type assault rifles.

        If guns are being “controlled,” I’d say the guns are winning!

        Liked by 2 people

        1. There is some control but they’re not being as controlled as some people want them to be. You can’t for instance, go to a reputable website and have a firearm sent directly to your house. It has to go first to a dealer who has a federal firearms license. For extreme control, California, for example, mandates that new pistol models must stamp the serial number on the brass cartridge being fired. Since that technology doesn’t exist, people in California don’t get to buy new pistol models. Most states are not as controlling. But California government likes to go its own way in a lot of areas.

          Liked by 1 person

        2. Partly (or mostly) because people are buying guns to protects themselves in cities where the police have been ordered to not interfere with criminals. People will find a way to protect themselves, regardless.

          Like

          1. Alex, please provide us link to an article reporting a city in America in which the police “have been ordered not to interfere with criminals.”

            Liked by 2 people

    2. Interesting Lt. Col that this video has not been made viewable in New Zealand by the uploader.
      I always wonder what that is all about?

      Like

      1. Perhaps government regulation. Maybe the NZ government doesn’t want anybody discussing guns in any format. Similar to the government of Germany which outlaws collecting Nazi memorabilia. At least for their subjects. Er, citizens.

        Like

    3. I’ve never seen a better rant!

      I can only imagine how scary it must be for kids to see armed cops roaming the school halls. Especially given the near-universal “cop mentality.” Anyone who doesn’t think the cop mentality exists just needs to go and speak with a few law enforcement officers. I have. It’s not only the training, it’s the innate personality traits that draw people to law enforcement—an “us vs. them” mindset.

      Liked by 2 people

      1. I agree Denise. I was once invited to go the cop gun range with a cop who was an acquaintance of an acquaintance. To fire their Glock 9mm’s. I never met such a bunch of egotistical a&$%holes in my life! With their “us vs them” attitude! Many in our area, being near an army base, are ex- military with a “warrior” mindset. They eat up all that regimentation stuff of the hardcore military grunts.
        I vividly remember my first encounter fresh off the plane with a US policeman at the LA airport in 1974. I mistakenly asked him for directions. He looked at me like I was dirt and walked off! Quite a contrast to the helpful polite English Bobby policemen our NZ policeman modelled themselves on. That impression has stuck with me ever since.

        Liked by 1 person

        1. Yes. What you asked that cop was beneath him. Or maybe he was just pissed off that day.

          Cops have a lot of authority. For some, that’s all they seek and want: authority. Power. Others are professionals who want to serve and do their best. It’s a mixed bag, but of course you’ll always remember the bad ones.

          Like

        2. My late father-in-law was a police officer, and he was a #1, prime jerk. Totally entitled, and massively bigoted.

          The burg where I used to live was crawling with cops, and they’d pull people over and harass them just for something to do. I was stopped late one night because I’d driven down the street twice, looking for a parking space. The officer admitted I’d broken no traffic laws, but said I looked “suspicious.” By that point, I was surrounded by four cruisers. I could tell stories like that for hours, just about me and people I know. How horrific to release “officers” like that on kids!

          Liked by 1 person

          1. I feel sorry for cops in that they are increasingly isolated from the community they are to protect. I see them huddled together at Dunkin Donuts, not dressed in a white shirt and tie as in decades ago but now in total black with bold white POLICE printed on the back and a belt load full of accessories, not just the pistol and cuffs of old, far more SWAT than Officer Friendly. You can talk to them, but they are extremely reserved, almost robotic, careful to avoid even a tiny but of emotion in their talk. This front can be broken but only with repeated interaction. The face presented to the public is hard and officious. This kind of absolute control of the self cannot be maintained for years on end without a change in the mindset of the rookie, whatever his/her reasons for joining.

            Liked by 3 people

      1. Oh, Alex. You’re good fun. Can’t you order both White and Black Russians? 🙂

        Seriously, White supremacy exists, and for some people it’s connected to gun culture. It’s interesting to note that most gun owners are male and most are white males. And that, historically, guns were often used by white males against Native Americans and slaves.

        We need to know our history and face its ugly realities, which is not to say it’s all ugliness.

        Liked by 2 people

        1. The other thing is that historically gun control was used as a way of keeping black people down by denying them their right to own a gun. It was part of Jim Crow laws. Curiously the people who did that tended to be from the same political party as those who now want more gun control. Isn’t that interesting? Beto O’Rourke – come out!

          Like

          1. That’s an interesting assertion, Alex. Can you provide more details? What time period are we talking? Certainly. the Jim Crow South, and Southern Democrats, did try to keep guns out of the hands of Blacks for purely racist/power reasons. This is not the same as “gun control” today. And I wouldn’t conflate the Southern Democrats of the 1960s with the Democratic Party of 2022.

            I’m not sure Black people have been elevated because now they’re able to buy guns more easily today. Blacks have struggled long and hard for equal rights, but that struggle was neither advanced by guns nor was it fulfilled by a greater capacity to buy them legally today.

            I do agree with you that Beto O’Rourke is a clown.

            Like

    1. unpropitiously for me. wja and alex, i can never download your posted videos in the comments section, but i was finally able to locate them on the open web during the wee hours of the morn. curiously, most of den merwood’s videos from NZ have been downloadable. i have no clue why. in response to alex’s environment video of george carlin’s supernal performance, i offer this repetend from an email i sent to the other den, the donaldson den from cleveland:

      “yes, den, it seems yet another travesty of human-sourced habitat destruction and transmogrification. an integral sector of my research at cornell university’s water resources and marine sciences centre involved investigating the exotic species infestation of cladophora sessile algae in upper new york state’s finger lakes region. however, as w/ every molecular compound configuration, all life is in a state of flux, whether we humanoids choose to identify whatever transpires in the inexorable evolutionary spectrum as ‘exotic’, ‘invasive’, ‘endemic’ or ‘acceptable’ by us, the most invasive species ever to have foot-printed this planet. it is a matter of perception and perspective during any moment in our brief passage in universal time. needless to convey, other life forms embrace a different perspective, all of which will become the antecedents of neoteric life forms, organic-based or inorganic-based, prokaryotes or eukaryotes, as they proceed thru the universe’s star-stuff dynamics. i endeavour to resist judgemental machinations based on the brevity of our myopic connection to planet earth during such a short-term trajectory as that of ‘Homo sapiens sapiens’, particularly given that 99.9% of every species that has ever found a ‘home’ on this planet over the past 5 billion years has bowed out, has become extinct, as taxonomists asseverate… when, actually, en effet, their DNA has contributed to all genotypic and phenotypic expressions that have unfolded thru evolutionary time. and yes, “in the long run”, from an evolutionary perspective, not from H.s.s.’ limited perspective, it is of scant consequence, given the inexorability of mutability… as our planet, solar mother, companion planets, and entire galaxy orbit themselves into yet another black hole to be transmutated into yet another star-nursery.”

      Liked by 1 person

  11. I’ll be brief. In my U.S. Air Force time 73- 79 Security Forces (Air Police) as a Airman & NCO I noticed the reality that a Gun is power. To some let’s face it even the psychologically relatively stable amongst us carrying a Gun was like having a permanent hard on– I observed that fact so am only speaking from my own experiences. And.., also you have this let’s face it the power of Life & Death as well. It can be a pure power trip ego, sexual, even every time you get to pull the trigger. You give a guy a gun and strange things can happen… Props to Matthew at the White House there’s no harm in trying.

    Liked by 4 people

    1. It’s true. Guns can give you a sense of power. Which is some people in power want to take away guns from the people. They’d rather have a subdued population to unquestioningly obey their orders. Like in the old days of kings and serfs. What they call “the good old days”.

      Like

      1. @ALEX
        Fact check this Alex:
        If you own a gun, you’re more likely to get shot than if you don’t own a gun. That’s a simple fact. Even using a gun for self-defense doesn’t mean you’re less likely to get hurt, it means you’re more likely to get hurt. The NRA’s myths around gun ownership gloss over the dangers of gun ownership; it’s time we reveal NRA propaganda for what it is, advertisements to buy guns and enrich gun companies.”

        Liked by 2 people

        1. Charles Branas‘s team at the University of Pennsylvania analysed 677 shootings over two-and-a-half years to discover whether victims were carrying at the time, and compared them to other Philly residents of similar age, sex and ethnicity. The team also accounted for other potentially confounding differences, such as the socioeconomic status of their neighborhood.

          Overall, Branas’s study found that people who carried guns were 4.5 times as likely to be shot and 4.2 times as likely to get killed compared with unarmed citizens. When the team looked at shootings in which victims had a chance to defend themselves, their odds of getting shot were even higher.

          Read more: https://www.newscientist.com/article/dn17922-carrying-a-gun-increases-risk-of-getting-shot-and-killed/#ixzz7Vq37jND1

          Liked by 2 people

          1. I couldn’t find the data so I can’t critique the paper. I don’t typically accept other people’s conclusions unless I can see the data. Philadelphia used to be called the City of Brotherly Love. But now it’s much more dangerous. About a 1 in a hundred chance of being a victim of violent crime. Too chaotic for my blood. Gangs would be my guess.

            Like

  12. @ALEX….”Partly (or mostly) because people are buying guns to protects themselves in cities where the police have been ordered to not interfere with criminals”…..IS NOT A STATISTIC!

    “Women all over the U.S. are buying guns for protection” …IS NOT A STATISTIC!

    “Most civilian guns are not used to kill.”….IS NOT A STATISTIC!

    You have not offered one statistic in all your posts today!

    Like

    1. Dennis, this is not a statistics-heavy site. It’s mostly an opinion site. I’ve you want statistics I would suggest the book, “More Guns Less Crime” by John Lott.

      Like

      1. It would seem that John Lott has it all wrong ALEX.
        The US has more guns per head by about 100-times that of New Zealand.
        And the US gun death statistics are enormous compared to New Zealand
        Sorry I won’t be reading “More Guns Less Grime”.
        Cheers mate.

        Like

      2. Alex: “More guns” means more guns. It’s that simple.

        As you know, most gun deaths are suicides. A proven stat is that guns in the home make it more likely that someone will be killed by a gun, whether by suicide, accidental deaths, etc. Too often, children find guns that are loaded and unsecured and they use them accidentally, wounding and killing their siblings and even their parents.

        I used to read those NRA reports of people using guns to scare off or even kill would-be intruders. While that occasionally does happen, it’s more likely that a gun in the home will lead to someone being wounded or killed, rather than “saved.”

        But, again, I’m not against guns. I’ve owned them and enjoyed them. And I know no one is coming to take my guns; that’s just scaremongering BS.

        Liked by 1 person

        1. The statistic I’ve heard is that guns are used to scare off criminals about two million times a year in the US.

          Like

          1. Statistically, having a gun in your home is more dangerous for you and your family, especially if you have young children or teens. A 2014 review in the Annals of Internal Medicine concluded having a firearm in the home, even when it’s properly stored, doubles your risk of becoming a victim of homicide and triples the risk of suicide.3

            Liked by 1 person

            1. That’s true. You have to take extra precautions with kids around. Of course there are a lot of products that address that including gun locks and gun safes. And it’s sad when a child is hurt because some person left a loaded gun on a dining room table. Bad practice.

              Like

          2. Alex, in reference to the statistic you’ve heard about, in a threatening encounter and assuming the threatened person is carrying a gun, do you think it is best to forget the gun and flee the scene or to stand up to the threat and use the gun? Is it better to get out of the situation with nobody harmed or is it better for the citizen to injure/kill the bad guy?

            Again in reference to that statistic, is there any evidence that the bad guys are seeing the light, realizing that too many people are now armed and are deciding to stop their criminal behavior or changing it over to something different like burglarizing cars, breaking into vending machines, anything that would keep them away from the armed citizen?

            Liked by 1 person

            1. Flee if you can, yes. If you can. As to your second question, basically Lott’s argument is that yes, some bad guys realize their targets may be armed and so they are less likely to commit their crime. More guns less crime. Some may go instead to a softer target. A gun-free zone. Like a school.

              Like

              1. So….what kind of crime is the average criminal (i.e., NOT a mass murderer) going to commit at a school? If a burglar chooses not to face an armed homeowner, what is he going to do in a school? Not seeing the logic there.

                Like

                1. @DENISE DONALDSON
                  A “Gun Free Zone” is another loaded term.
                  You will never see this term used by anybody accept gun nuts!

                  Liked by 1 person

                2. Good point, because theoretically, every public place except a shooting range should be free of guns.

                  It’s a scary, scary feeling, not knowing if the guy in line next to you at the grocery store might be armed.

                  Like

                3. @DENISE DONALDSON
                  A “Gun Free Zone” is a uniquely American Term.
                  People in New Zealand would not have a clue what you were talking about.

                  But lets keep our perspective here Denise.
                  I lived in Seattle for 41-years – and never once was affected in the SuperMarket, or anywhere else, by the person next to me being armed. Neither was any member of my family, or anyone I know.
                  My quality of life was not diminished by that – Thanks to God. ( I am not religious as you know.)
                  I dunno what that says or proves frankly!

                  Liked by 1 person

                4. Well, as I mentioned awhile back, there was a shooting in a nearby family restaurant a few years ago. My husband and I go in there a couple times a month. Some psycho husband went in there solely to kill his estranged wife and kids. He succeeded, fatally shooting his wife and one of his two daughters. He wounded the other girl.

                  Then there was the drive-by one night as the theater was letting out downtown. My catering crew and I had left before the performance had ended, so we were never in any danger, but still….

                  And the gun craze is only getting worse!

                  Liked by 1 person

              2. Your soft target argument is hard to support because the typical school shooting ends in the death of the shooter and far more often by suicide than from the action of any armed protectors. I doubt any school shooter goes in with the idea of coming out alive, but rather to take as many victims with him as possible making a widely reported event of it. Guns make it possible. Knowing one is certainly going to die shortly by one’s own weapon would not seem to make fear of death, even if by an armed guard, an issue for the shooter.

                But the big issue of school fortification is the destruction of trust in others. Putting armed guards in schools would destroy what little trust can be maintained at present with all doors being locked from the inside. I maintain that with each school shooting, the shooter damages the entire country in this way. The rat in the skull, the fear of each of us grows larger each time.

                This ending of all trust is never mentioned, perhaps it is already gone, but it is a very high price when it is forced on every single student attending an American school. It baffles me that there seem to be enthusiasts eager for school fortification, as if there is no down side whatsoever to the mind of every child. This is true also of the enthusiasts for concealed carry who don’t think at all of the psychological cost of the average citizen becoming so fearful as to go out in public ready to see threat anywhere and any time and being primed to kill or injure a fellow American based only the idea of a threat that may occur in the mind of the armed citizen.

                Nobody can read the mind of another to know the intentions of another, yet I am expected to go out in public with fellow citizens armed and ready to shoot me if they interpret me as a threat, with “stand your ground” encouraging them to do it regardless of whether I am a threat or not. That this is claimed to be an advance needed to prevent tyranny by a government that has laws that specifically protect me as an individual against the use of force is a contradiction that I have never seen explained or even mentioned: using a speculation on protection from the government by an armed citizenry to arm citizens with the real danger presented by everyone carrying a deadly weapon in public.

                I’m 71 and have never in my life felt threatened by anyone though I have been out and about daily in public. I cannot square this real experience with the gun mania that indicates a profound fear of fellow Americans so pressing that we are all to arm up against each other. That we are to teach our children at school to be fearful and back it with firearm toting teachers staggers me. Yes, children, grow up to be all you can be, but observe your teacher with a deadly weapon, always lock doors and know that there are Americans outside that could be a killer coming for you. Be good and always be on the lookout for the bad. As an adult expect to carry a firearm.

                The shooters who kill the children in school have been gun enthusiasts enabled by the ease of obtaining guns, but to get rid of guns is out of the question and in fact we are going all out in the other direction, you and me armed and ready, more guns good. Wayne LaPierre follows Charleton Heston, a man who had every success the country could bestow, raging against an imagined threat while the two men themselves support a real tyranny that our bought politicians cannot break.

                Liked by 3 people

                1. I agree totally, clif. Kids have enough difficulty navigating life these days, especially teenagers, without keeping them in a constant state of fear. And they’ll grow up with all kinds of insecurities. Just the very idea that there’s only one way out if the building is scary enough.

                  Besides which, there are ways for a shooter to circumvent the “one entrance/exit” scenario. So far, I’ve haven’t read of a “hardening” plan that would even work, let alone avoid all the complications you outline.

                  Like

                2. @DENISE DONALDSON
                  “Hardened Schools” – another term that is distinctly American.
                  And with a military origin.
                  I think hardened schools would be fatal to functioning society!
                  Disastrous – time to admit you live in society that has systemically failed.

                  Liked by 1 person

                3. No argument there! That’s the big picture: if the supposedly safest environment for children isn’t safe, all the rhetoric is meaningless.

                  “If we have armed guards,” “if we lock the classroom doors,” “if we have metal detectors,” “if we only allow one exit”…..do Ted Cruz et. al. listen to themselves? Do they realize how crazy that all sounds?

                  Like

              3. I don’t think we should be put off by language. Schools should have doors to the outside that lock automatically and can only be opened from the inside or with a key. Panic bars on the inside. The same for classrooms I think. People may call that “hardening” and be repelled by the idea if they want to but that’s a part of school safety. School officials should be instructed to leave the doors closed unless someone is entering or leaving and they must have a good reason for doing so. And it should be easy for officials to find and access the keys and they shouldn’t need to go hunting for the janitor to do so. Schools are a special problem when considering violence and should be treated that way.

                Like

  13. @WJASTORE. To continue my post on debating gun nuts. Everyday on YouTube there is probably 2-dozen new videos posted on sites run by gun nuts. At least. They all get 1,000+ of views, and 1,000’s of comments. All rabidly Pro-gun. To dive into that cesspool as a dissenting point of view – oh man! You get lambasted and worse! Crude, insulting and not the sharpest knives in the drawer.

    And to continue to take them on, and admittedly giving back same some of their insults, I one day woke up to find that Google had suspended my ability to make YouTube comments. With no right of appeal. Which means I can no longer comment on any YouTube video on any subject!

    The Pro-Gun “forces” out there are huge. More than most anti-gun group could imagine. Since in simple odds, the chance of any constitutional amendment being repealed would be roughly the same as a person living to 80 years old being struck by lightning during their lifetime, the chances of the 2nd Amendment being amended or repealed in the US are slim yo none! Not going to happen.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Dennis, welcome to the world of censorship. Supporters of Israel have even been able to get individual state legislatures to deny state business to any contractor who supports the entirely peaceful Boycott, Divest, Sanction (BDS) movement of the Palestinians. In your case who knows what Google is doing behind the scenes. With government actions we know it is lobby power.

      Like

  14. Off Topic [but not really]…

    Now that the “United States House Select Committee on the January 6 Attack” reality-tv show has begun in prime time, i would like to offer the thoughts i had about that day back on January 9, 2021.

    First of all: As a retired US Army Master Sergeant, the only thing that i have seen recently that filled me with the same sense of horror and nausea ~ and degree of disgust and foreboding ~ as the Trumpatistas’ invasion of the Capitol was the sight back in August, 2017, of legions of young American white nationalists and supremacists carrying torches, signs, and flags, and chanting their chants on the grounds of the academy that Jefferson built in Charlottesville, Virginia. Having said that…

    Whatever that was up on Capitol Hill on January 6, it was not a “coup,” an “insurgency,” or an “insurrection,” no matter what the politicians, pundits, and other propagandists in SwampLand, the media, Tinseltown, or academia may try to tell and sell us.

    It was trespassing, assault on government employees, breaking and entering, the invasion and destruction of public and private property, the disruption of public business, and the wasting of public officials’ and government employees’ time, effort, and energy, and of taxpayers’ money.

    Coups, insurgencies, and insurrections aren’t attempted by people carrying nothing but flags, signs, selfie-sticks, and smartfones, with hotel checkouts the next day at 11 am. That was not an attempt to overthrow the government of the United States [which, to actually happen in the real world, would have to start at the Pentagon, the CIA, and/or the Federal Reserve].

    At this point, the whole “Save America March” ~ at least for the thousands who showed up to hear Trump’s speech and didn’t go on to Capitol Hill ~ was, rather, an attempt by a bunch of disgruntled American taxpayer/citizens to have some sort of impact on what they see happening to their country and to their and their children’s future.

    It was a chance for those “Disgruntleds” to let somebody ~ anybody ~ know how they feel about the next President and how he got there; much as there were massive anti-Trump marches the day after his inauguration back in 2017, and condemnations of the whole Electoral College system.

    [Note: It was interesting to note how everybody’s attitude about the Electoral College suddenly changed when asked how they would feel if the results were exactly reversed: That Trump had won the popular vote, and Clinton the Electoral.]

    Of the however many that then went to the Capitol, there were but a few hundred who actually attempted and made it into the building, and, of them, but a handful who actually made it into the Chamber or Congressional offices. And from the looks of many of those who got inside, they weren’t exactly sure of what they were doing other than wondering how they got there, and what they were supposed to be doing next, other than making sure they captured it on their phone.

    One thing that the Black Lives Matter activities and actions last summer have in common with the Save America March is that both started as, and consisted of peaceful, lawful protest by the overwhelming majority of the participants, on the one hand, and ended in violent, lawless rioting by a distinct, clearly identifiable minority, on the other.

    In any event, the biggest difference between the BLM and SAM events is that the violence on January 6 did not include the widespread damage, destruction, arson, and looting of public and private property that characterized how many BLM protests ended up. All that happened on Capitol Hill in terms of property damage was some smashed windows and bashed in doors, and nothing at all that could be termed “looting.” Pelosi’s lectern never even made it out of the building; probably would’ve been tough to check-in for the flite back home, eh?

    Another difference is that BLM protests that turned into riots had virtually none of the direct, extended, face-to-face, hand-to-hand combat between law enforcers and SAM rioters; which included many very violent, individual and small-group physical contacts. The summer’s riots had lots of rocks and stun guns, tear gas and fireworks, and counter-vailing aerosols; but very few up-close and personal, hand-to-hand combats, if any.

    Another similarity between the BLM and SAM riots is that both included verbal and physical assaults by rioters against journalists and news crews, and the destruction of journalists’ and news crews’ equipment and property. One very notable difference is that, compared to the number of assaults, obstructions, and arrests by police of journalists during BLM protests, there seem to have been none during SAM. At least so far.

    And finally, arguably the most important thing that both BLM and SAM have in common is that they both blame the violence and rioting on outsider infiltrators, agents provocateurs, false flaggers, and anybody but themselves. BLMers says the Proud Boys and their anti-Everything Not Them ilk are behind all the chaos; just like the Trumpites are claiming the same for the antifas [or “Pantifas,” as one wag put it].

    At this point, serious consideration should be given to the possibility that there is perhaps a third element and force at work; one that seeks to use both BLM and Trumpatismo’s SAM for its own agenda’s purposes. See Question 2, which follows.

    The most important Questions to be asked and answered about January 6 are:

    1. Where were the Capitol and DC Police ~ let alone Federal national defense and law enforcement agencies ~ while all this was going on? And more importantly, where were they even before it all started? What did they know and when did they know it? Where was our nation’s most-extensive-and-expensive-in-the-world vaunted surveillance/secrecy/security/safety panopticon when the Legislative Branch of the government of the United States of America really, really needed it?

    2. Who benefited from all this? Ie, Cui Bono?, as they say in the investigative business. Who is better off today than they were before the “Save America March,” in whatever currency of the realm of note? Which politicians, bureaucrats, special interests, and their owners and operators can and will cash in on it to advance their own individual, organizational, and institutional agendas? Biden and his cohorts certainly are and most certainly will; as will and are Trump and his compeers.

    Shortly after Congress sealed the deal on Biden’s victory, President Trump vicariously assured somebody that there would be an “orderly transition” of power on January 20. Note, however, that he did not “concede” anything. And in fact, he promised that this was “only the beginning of our fight to “Make America Great Again!”

    So even if it does happen that Trump leaves the White House on or before January 20 [25th Amendment, Impeachment and Conviction, a relapse of his COVID infection, whatever], that does not mean that THE AGE OF TRUMP is ending.

    To a significant number of Americans, it is only just beginning. And a time for re-grouping for the next jihad. After all, some Germans thought they’d seen the last of Hitler after the failed Beer Hall Putsch; but other Germans thought otherwise.

    Not only is this whole thing not only not over, it is actually just barely even just getting started.

    Like

    1. BLM and SAM comparisons are potentially invidious.

      Here’s what I mean. BLM is responding to the disproportionate shootings and killings of Blacks by police officers.

      SAM was in response to, well, what, exactly? The big lie that Trump really won the election of 2020?

      BLM protesters are trying to effect meaningful change in how police departments treat people of color.

      SAM protesters were trying to do what, exactly? Reverse the 2020 election so Trump could be president for another four years? Pose for selfies in the Capitol? Sit in Pelosi’s chair and office?

      Comparisons of BLM to SAM suggest equivalence, which is why they should be done carefully, if at all. Put differently, SAM could be compared to other movements and protests that are less emotive.

      Like

      1. i agree completely that BLM/SAM comparisons are “potentially invidious,” Colonel.

        My question is: Were my comparisons [and contrasts] “invidious”? Or even potentially so?

        You continued: “Here’s what I mean. BLM is responding to the disproportionate shootings and killings of Blacks by police officers. SAM was in response to, well, what, exactly? The big lie that Trump really won the election of 2020?”

        The peaceful, lawful BLM demonstrations, marches, and protests were clearly in response to the actions of police against Blacks. But what were the riots, arson, murder, and looting a response to? Police brutality? Or something else?

        And what was the difference between the SAM until it got to Capitol Hill and those peaceful, lawful BLM actions before the riots, etc broke out?

        Or the difference between the peaceful, lawful part of the SAM, and the anti-Trump March on Washington the day after his inauguration in 2017, protesting ~ among other things besides just him ~ the Electoral College?

        And were the BLM rioters [not “protesters,” as You termed them, but rioters, looters, arsonists, etc] “trying to effect meaningful change in how police departments treat people of color”? Or were they trying to accomplish something else?

        And You asked the same question that i asked about SAM: What exactly WERE they doing ~ or trying to do ~ that day?

        Do You honestly, actually, and sincerely believe that that action on January 6 had even the slightest, remotest chance of changing the Electoral College results of the election? Or that any of the people on The Hill that day had ever bothered to even ask themselves that question?

        Like i said: “[nly a handful actually made it into the Chamber or Congressional offices…and from the looks of many of those who got inside, they weren’t exactly sure of what they were doing other than wondering how they got there, and what they were supposed to be doing next, other than making sure they captured it on their phone.”

        You concluded: “Comparisons of BLM to SAM suggest equivalence, which is why they should be done carefully, if at all. Put differently, SAM could be compared to other movements and protests that are less emotive.”

        Well, my comparisons [and contrasts] of BLM and SAM were meant to suggest, as carefully as possible, both equivalences and significant differences. Maybe something got lost in translation.

        In any event: Can You give any examples of other movements and protests that are [or were] examples of what You mean by “less emotive” than SAM? And “less emotive” to who?

        Like

          1. It’s a shame Washington Commanders Coach Jack Del Rio hadn’t read Your cautioning statement, Colonel His statement regarding BLM and SAM certainly turned out to be “invidious.” At least to his bank account.

            JACK DEL RIO FINED $100,000 FOR COMMENTS, MONEY TO GO TO JAN. 6 MEMORIAL FUND by Michael Phillips Jun 10, 2022 66

            Washington Commanders assistant Jack Del Rio has been fined $100,000 by the team for comments referring to the Jan. 6 insurrection as a “dust-up” on Wednesday.

            Team coach Ron Rivera released the following statement on Thursday:

            “This morning I met with Coach Del Rio to express how disappointed I am in his comments on Wednesday. His comments do not reflect the organization’s views and are extremely hurtful to our great community here in the DMV.

            “As we saw (Thursday) night in the hearings, what happened on the Capitol on January 6, 2021 was an act of domestic terrorism. A group of citizens attempted to overturn the results of a free and fair election, and as a result, lives were lost and the Capitol building was damaged. Coach Del Rio did apologize for his comments on Wednesday and he understands the distinction between the events of that dark day and peaceful protests, which are a hallmark of our democracy.

            “He does have the right to voice his opinion as a citizen of the United States and it most certainly is his constitutional right to do so. However, words have consequences and his words hurt a lot of people in our community. I WANT TO MAKE IT CLEAR THAT OUR ORGANIZATION WILL NOT TOLERATE ANY EQUIVALENCY BETWEEN THOSE WHO DEMANDED JUSTICE IN THE WAKE OF GEORGE FLOYD’S MURDER AND THE ACTIONS OF THOSE ON JANUARY 6 WHO SOUGHT TO TOPPLE OUR GOVERNMENT. [EMPHASIS added.]

            Continued at https://richmond.com/sports/professional/jack-del-rio-fined-100-000-for-comments-money-to-go-to-jan-6-memorial/rticle_c40d3111-4dd5-596d-8139-35d53d92f3e5.html?utm_source=richmond.com&utm_campaign=%2Fnewsletter-templates%2Fdaily-headlines&utm_medium=PostUp&utm_content=1377bd82a1b60daef42731e3b797a8015e7d2612

            Like

            1. The lesson is that if you say politically incorrect things and you work for an authoritarian and woke boss it can really cost you. Especially if the boss is in the public eye. Which is the point. Either agree with the boss or shut up.

              Like

  15. Again Off Topic; and again, Not Really.

    Do the words “Weimar Germany” and “hyperinflation” ring a bell?

    U.S. ANNUAL INFLATION POSTS LARGEST GAIN IN NEARLY 41 YEARS AS FOOD, GASOLINE PRICES SOAR by Lucia Mutikani

    – Consumer price index increases 1.0% in May
    – Gasoline, food, rents biggest drivers of inflation
    – CPI surges 8.6% year-on-year, largest gain since 1981
    – Core CPI rises 0.6%; advances 6.0% year-on-year

    WASHINGTON, June 10 (Reuters) – U.S. consumer prices accelerated in May as gasoline prices hit a record high and the cost of food soared, leading to the largest annual increase in nearly 40-1/2 years, suggesting that the Federal Reserve could continue with its 50 basis points interest rate hikes through September to combat inflation.

    The faster-than-expected increase in inflation last month reported by the Labor Department on Friday also reflected a surge in rents, which increased by the most since 1990. The relentless price pressures are forcing Americans to change their spending habits and will certainly heighten fears of either an outright recession or period of very slow growth.

    Continued at https://www.reuters.com/markets/us/soaring-gasoline-food-prices-boost-us-consumer-inflation-may-2022-06-10/

    Like

    1. Here’s hoping we don’t need shopping carts to carry all the deflated currency we’ll need to buy the most ordinary goods.

      When filling your gas tank costs $100 (or more), how long before people start protesting in a big way? I guess that’s why Biden said “fund the police,” and why police forces need all those MRAPs and assorted military gear.

      Like

      1. Heh. Yeah. Back in Weimar they used wheelbarrows.

        And that’s another DFQ, or Damn Fine Question about when people are going to start protesting inflation.

        The biggest question i have on that is: How will they go about protesting in such a way that the Federal Reserve actually listens to them and then actually does something about inflation? Of which it is the Primary Cause.

        And how will they go about protesting in such a way that, first, the politicians addicted to Deficits and Debt will actually listen to them and demand, first, that The Fed do something.

        And second, how will their protest force those same politicians to kick their addiction to Money created out of thin air so as to fund all their Deficits and Debt?

        The problem is that there is probably very little The Fed or anybody else in Swampland can do about this inflation without precipitating a serious recession or worse coupled with continued rampaging inflation. Sort of like the good ole days of “stagflation” back in the late 70s; but on steroids.

        Like

        1. JG there are plenty of experts on YouTube saying to get your wheel barrow ready.
          And its not just in the USA.
          Diesel in NZ in 2020 = NZ$0.99/liter. This morning I notice at the pumps = NZ$3.10/liter
          I used to fill my Isuzu ute for NZ$70 – now over NZ$200!

          Like

          1. Good video. Thanks. We probably won’t need wheelbarrows, if only because most people nowadays don’t have wheelbarrows. What we’ll have is stamps that convert a hundred dollar bill into a hundred thousand dollar bill. And then some ruler will come along with a “new” dollar that is worth 1000 inflated “old” dollars.

            Like

    2. As an aside, despite rising inflation, the interest rate on my savings account hasn’t risen one bit. It currently sits at 0.1%. Not 1.0%. .1%.

      So much for keeping up with inflation!

      Like

      1. Well, Your bank ~ like all banks ~ is certainly keeping up. After all, that’s the whole function of and reason for having a Fed, isn’t it?

        Like

      2. Did a quick online search. Looks like I could get a whopping 1.25% if I feel like moving my money.

        Shouldn’t the interest rate be tied to the inflation rate? Ha ha.

        Like

        1. My guess is that that depends entirely upon who sets the interest rate and who is controlling the inflation rate.

          Like

          1. I read a column where the person was reviewing his investments and decided he had the best returns with his extra cases of toilet paper.

            Like

  16. We were riding our BMW motorcycles in Zimbabwe in 2004. We came across a kerfuffle at a gas station. A bunch of 12-year old kids holding huge handfuls of paper notes! $1,000,000,000 bills! Worth nothing. We Americans bought a few each for souvenirs. At US$1.00 each! They ran across the road to the supermarket to buy stale bread with the American dollars. Pretty sad.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yeah that Mugabe was a real hoot. And a brilliant economist (sic). I’ll bet the people were glad they got independence from Britain though. So glad they left the country to celebrate. Meet the new boss. Much much worse than the old boss. It’s possible you know.

      Like

    1. Thanks. Some truth here. But note the conflict of interest. The author heads a security consulting firm. His solution is to “harden” all schools. In short, he’ll profit from the advice he’s giving — a clear conflict of interest.

      Liked by 2 people

      1. That’s a reasonable comment. Conflicts of interest are always tricky. You want someone with some expertise in an area but someone with real expertise is likely to make their living in that area. To me the main conflict of interest in gun control comes from government officials who want more gun control. Oh you want more power do you? You mean for yourself? Oh of course. It will be better when you give us more power, we promise. Oh sure. Here, here’s the power. Now you can rule over me even more, your Majesty. Forget it.

        Like

  17. Chris Hedges……..

    “Guns made my family, lower working-class people in Maine, feel powerful, even when they were not. Take away their guns and what was left? Decaying small towns, shuttered textile and paper mills, dead-end jobs, seedy bars where veterans, nearly all the men in my family were veterans, drank away their trauma. Take away the guns, and the brute force of squalor, decline and abandonment hit you in the face like a tidal wave.

    Yes, the gun lobby and weapons manufacturers fuel the violence with easily available assault-style weapons, whose small caliber 5.56 mm cartridges make them largely useless for hunting. Yes, the lax gun laws and risible background checks are partially to blame.

    But America also fetishizes guns. This fetish has intensified among white working-class men, who have seen everything slip beyond their grasp: economic stability, a sense of place within the society, hope for the future and political empowerment.

    The fear of losing the gun is the final crushing blow to self-esteem and dignity, a surrender to the economic and political forces that have destroyed their lives. They cling to the gun as an idea, a belief that with it they are strong, unassailable and independent. The shifting sands of demographics, with white people projected to become a minority in the U.S. by 2045, intensifies this primal desire, they would say need, to own a weapon”

    https://consortiumnews.com/2022/06/07/chris-hedges-americas-gun-fetish/

    Liked by 1 person

    1. That scene Hedges describes of veterans in a bar….I know it well. Up through the aftermath of the Vietnam era, probably the majority of men in any given bar were veterans, and that gave them a bond. For many, their service was the only time they’d left their small towns, and horrific as their experiences may have been, they knew the companionship of fighting together. It was THE defining moment of their lives, never to be repeated. And what was the defining symbol of their service? Guns, in one form or another. So, I think Hedges is right, here, on several levels.

      This is not to say that all veterans are gun fetishists who sit in bars and re-live their time in the military. Many—and I’ve known a few—never want to talk about their service and never want to touch a gun again.

      Liked by 1 person

  18. As mentioned previously, I installed, reconsidered and then quickly removed a burglar alarm system in my house because I did not want my little children to see daddy disabling and enabling the system every time we left or entered the house. Trust in others is something precious, comes naturally to children and is lost either by observation of adult behavior (conscious or not) or bad experience. My removal of the alarm system came long before any “hardening” of schools which teaches children to be anxious, exactly what I wanted to avoid.

    It’s impossible to object even to the simple procedure of locking the doors to the schools. Administrators have no choice and the message is perfectly clear: trust no one, anticipate attack. This is precisely the message that gun advocates want all of us to share, the fantasy that a threatening other is always out there, we should be vigilant for him and ready to kill. What is this if not mental illness? It is not the same as that of a school shooter but it is both far more widespread and those suffering it are eager to infect more. It is becoming the American Attitude.

    For Congress the guiding principle regarding gun violence is Don’t Touch the Hardware. But what are we doing to the minds of our children including the vast majority that will never be threatened by a gunman at school? This issue is not even considered by the hardeners, who talk as if there is no downside to school fortification.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I think children need protection and need to be taught to be cautious around strangers. The chances of them being hurt by a stranger may be small but the consequences may be severe.

      Like

  19. Yes a few minutes ago in New Zealand……The World is going crazy! Holy cow!

    Gunman opened fire on driver dropping off child at Taupiri School, Waikato District mayor says..

    Six or seven gunshots rang out near a Waikato school in what police are describing as a serious incident on Tuesday morning.

    A Taupiri resident, who doesn’t want to be named, said she heard about six or seven shots at 9.30am.

    “I knew instantly they were gunshots as it was bang, bang, bang … it wasn’t like a backfire or fireworks it was definitely gunshots.”

    She said police took a little while to arrive.

    Like

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s