Call Us All Crazy

So yesterday Wayne LaPierre said, “If it’s crazy to call for armed officers in our schools to protect our children, then call me crazy.” Actually, I don’t think the idea is “crazy” as much as it is “stupid.” One, there’s no money to pay for that many trained professionals (using unpaid volunteers would be crazy). And two, the presence of armed security in schools and elsewhere hasn’t stopped mass shootings in the past.

In fact, there was an armed sheriff’s deputy at Columbine High School the day of the shooting. There was an armed citizen in the Clackamas Mall in Oregon during a shooting earlier this month. There was an armed citizen at the Gabby Giffords shooting – and he almost shot the unarmed hero who tackled shooter Jared Loughner. Virtually every university in the county already has its own police force. Virginia Tech had its own SWAT-like team. As James Brady, Ronald Reagan’s former press secretary cum gun control advocate, often notes, he was shot along with the president, despite the fact that they were surrounded by dozens of heavily armed and well-trained Secret Service agents and police.

Regarding the Clackamas Mall shooting, the armed citizen mentioned above was a guy who was legally carrying a concealed firearm, and who saw the shooter. But the armed citizen realized he didn’t have a clean shot and did not fire, but instead took cover in a store. After the armed citizen stood down, the gunman shot and killed himself.

Even so, the gun nutters always include Clackamas Mall on their lists of shooters stopped by an armed citizen, because according to the Right-Wing Legend of Clackamas Mall the sight of someone with a concealed weapon so unnerved the gunman that he shot himself. And then with the next breath they will tell you that mass shootings only happen in “gun-free zones.” Well, somebody’s crazy.

But if you want to talk crazy, what’s crazy is a country in which a corrupt crackpot like LaPierre gets interviewed on national television. What’s crazy is letting gun nuts write gun laws. Wayne LaPierre, on the other hand, is paid very well for what he does. It’s not crazy to appreciate how your bread gets buttered.

A correspondent for The Economist points out that in Sanity World, “strict gun laws” means no guns. He also says,

I would also say, to stick my neck out a bit further, that I find many of the arguments advanced for private gun ownership in America a bit unconvincing, and tinged with a blend of excessive self-confidence and faulty risk perception.

This is a polite way of saying that the guys (and it’s nearly always guys) who sincerely believe they could have stopped some mass shooter if they’d only been there with their guns generally have less sense than a head of lettuce.


Nowadays, however, there are four states that require no permit at all to carry a gun, and 35 states have permissive “shall issue” or “right-to-carry” laws that effectively take the decision of who should carry a weapon out of law enforcement’s hands. These laws say that if an applicant meets minimal criteria — one is not having been convicted of a felony, and another is not having a severe mental illness — officials have no choice about whether to issue a permit.

Some states go even further by expressly allowing guns where they should not be. Nine states now have “carry laws” that permit guns on campuses; eight permit them in bars; five permit them in places of worship. In Utah, holders of permits can now carry concealed guns in elementary schools.

Among the arguments advanced for these irresponsible statutes is the claim that “shall issue” laws have played a major role in reducing violent crime. But the National Research Council has thoroughly discredited this argument for analytical errors. In fact, the legal scholar John Donohue III and others have found that from 1977 to 2006, “shall issue” laws increased aggravated assaults by “roughly 3 to 5 percent each year.”


9 thoughts on “Call Us All Crazy

  1. If we can’t get any meaningful gun control, maybe ObamaCare ought to provide free p*nis-enl*rgement?

    Maybe if some of these guys had bigger, better, p*eckers, they wouldn’t need to be packin’ pistols to prove their mucho macho manhood.

    And no, Wayne LaPierre, you ain’t crazy.
    Just sociopathic and greedy – like the people and companies you market guns, ammo, fear, and hatred, for.

  2. To my mind this idea of having legions of armed guards everywhere calls up the clause about the “well regulated militia” that we’re supposed to pretend doesn’t exist. I mean, it sort of nudges the 2nd Amendment back in the direction of being about the “security of a free state” rather than an individual right of self-defense. It’s still deranged, of course, and of course there’s no point trying to interpret the 2nd Amendment at the gun nuts. But good God, the idea that we can’t even regulate guns is preposterous considering that the words “well regulated” are in the freaking amendment.

  3. “Well-Regulated” means the Militia is ‘organized, armed, disciplined, governed, and called to action’ by authority and direction of Congress, and such Militia is trained and led by officers appointed by the States under the authority of, and discipline prescribed by Congress. {CotUS Article I, Section 8, Para 15, 16)

    No State shall, without the Consent of Congress… …keep Troops {CotUS Article I, Section 10, Para 3)

    A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed. {CotUS amendment II}

    The Congress shall have the Power To… …provide for the common Defense and general Welfare of the United States. {CotUS Article I, Section 8, Para 1)

    I do not see anywhere in this text any statement to the effect that any person can own any specific item of any kind, gun or otherwise, nor any prohibition against Congress or the States regulating manufacture, sale, or distribution of firearms.

    But that is just me. I don’t normally wear a black dress and act important in front of the cameras…

  4. Dan: check out the ruling in the Heller case. I agree 110% with you, however scalia has a much different take on the second.

  5. Wait a gol durn minute, that “LaPierre” feller; he’s FRENCH!!! Ain’t he?

    Merry Christmas, Y’all!

  6. Since I suppose you, like me, think that we can never have too much Schadenfreude, here’s a terrific piece about the Conserative Crazy Old Coot Cruise, sponsored by The Natioanl Review:

    And apparently, the tropical sun and sea, doesn’t do anything to help them with their cognitive dissonance.

    It’s kind of long, but believe me, it’s well worth it.
    I may save it to my computer, because it’ll be worth re-readeing at some point later on in the winter. It’ll warm the cockles of my heart – and there’s nothing that makes me happier, than warm cockles on a winter evening – unless someone else is warming them. 😉

  7. Heller is right and won’t be soon overturned.

    We need to directly take on the 2nd A and make it clear what’s necessary is civilian disarmament on a big scale.

    And Merry Christmas to all.

  8. The 2nd Amendment mentions a “well-regulated” militia as justification for the right to bear arms. Well-regulated means under control; so the 2nd Amendment _bases_ gun rights _upon_ gun control. The Second Amendment is at least as much a gun control amendment as it is a gun rights amendment; so we need not repeal it or even reform it; we need merely enforce the Founder’s plain stated intent.

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