Taking The Bait

I’m sorry that I took the bait and launched into yet another no-win exchange of comments with the progressive minority here (Professor Jimmy and I are never going to agree, it is clear he has little respect for me and the feeling is mutual, I can assure you) but beyond the personalities, as always, there seems to me to be a complete lack of understanding on the left of how to solve any problem – or in this case to even discuss it rationally.

I’m apparently “extreme”, “afraid”, I have no reading comprehension, I don’t want to debate, I haven’t proposed any “new” solutions and I seem to be crazy – that is if you listen to my antagonists. I have not been very nice and I have been mocking in tone, I’ll give you that – but my patience to suffer fools is completely exhausted.

We got off on the subject of guns again yesterday due to FC’s post about the two animals who shot a mother in the leg and a child in the face while trying to rob them…and somewhat unsurprisingly, the focus immediately went to the possession of guns and the regulation of them and not to the true issue, the clear and present evil of those two sub-humans. It is as if we could just somehow take away all the tools and lock them up, everything would be OK, that somehow we could contain the evil that causes one human to devalue the life of themselves or another that they are willing to kill.

Apparently, support for the Second Amendment is equal to cheering for the murder of children…because you don’t “need” a gun.

Of course, there are those (and I am not directing this at any specific commenters on TRNL) that deny the existence of pure evil, preferring the arrogance of assuming that everything can be explained in humanistic terms, and therefore, must have a humanistic solution. Just look at the never-ending gun “control” debate that gets reignited every time the progressive left sees an emotional lever to pull – and make no mistake, that is what they see when they see a tragedy like Sandy Hook, Columbine, the Giffords shooting, etc… I’m sure that they initially feel sorrow but within the first few hours after, the thoughts of how they can use these events to push a favored agenda starts to coalesce. This is not an opinion; it is the result of deductive reasoning based on witnessing the aftermath of these events and publically available facts.

Let’s look at the 2011 FBI numbers again:

  • Total murders in: 12,664
  • Total using firearms: 8,583
  • Total using handguns: 6,220
  • Total using rifles: 323

What weapon did the “progressives” focus on?

A small subset of the 323 rifles.

According to the Center for Disease Control, there were 38,364 suicides in the US in 2010. The New York Times calculates that over 20,000 of these were via firearms:

The gun debate has focused on mass shootings and assault weapons since the schoolhouse massacre in Newtown, Conn., but far more Americans die by turning guns on themselves. Nearly 20,000 of the 30,000 deaths from guns in the United States in 2010 were suicides, according to the most recent figures from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The national suicide rate has climbed by 12 percent since 2003, and suicide is the third-leading cause of death for teenagers.

I can’t dispute their numbers, so I won’t but I think that it is a safe assumption that a very large percentage of these involved a handgun.

What weapon did the “progressives” focus on?

A small subset of the rifle family.

I’m not advocating for the restriction of handguns – but I do think it is craven and hypocritical for progressive politicians to create the aura of “doing something” while going after a subset of weapons that really changes nothing…and we have evidence of that fact from the data gleaned during the last “assault weapon” ban.

Apparently, all we need is just more laws to further restrict the behaviors of people who already follow the laws…but that is nothing less than magical thinking. While it does allow them to claim that the “gun nuts” are “extreme” by opposing a provision that we all can agree did nothing, our “nutty” opposition is based on the solid position that having more legal restrictions that do nothing is not better, and it is simply a reduction of liberty for no gain. None of the legislation would have stopped any of the shootings – none of them.

Looking at this process in its entirety, it is hard for a rational person to see actions of Democrat politicians like Diane Feinstein and Governor Cuomo as anything other than using raw emotion and demagoguery of a very minor subset of all firearms to drive a political wedge between popular opinion and the Constitution. This isn’t about solving any immediate problem; it is about the long game, the principle of stare decisis – building on precedent – to attain a toehold from which to drive greater restrictions in the future. The hyperbole of which is encapsulated in this statement by the CDC’s Dr. Mark Rosenberg:

“The literature suggests that having a gun in your home to protect your family is like bringing a time bomb into your house,” said Dr. Mark Rosenberg, an epidemiologist who helped establish the C.D.C.’s National Center for Injury Prevention and Control. “Instead of protecting you, it’s more likely to blow up.”

Is that true?

According to several data sources, there are somewhere between 300 to 350 million firearms in private hands in America. If we add the firearm related murders and suicides, we arrive at around 30,000 deaths a year – divided by 300 million guns, that is a mortality rate of 10 per 10,000 guns. In comparison, there were slightly over 32,000 automobile related deaths in 2010 with a total number of passenger vehicles in the US at around 305 million cars, busses, trucks and motorcycles – that also gives a mortality rate of around 10 people per 10,000 vehicles.

So Dr. Rosenberg has offered up a political non sequitur to win points with low information people.

No rational gun owner is for facilitating suicides or the killing of children – but there is an answer for the access issue and it isn’t some James Bond device as contemplated by Joe Nocera in a recent NYT editorial. It is as I wrote the morning of after the Sandy Hook shooting – gun owners have a responsibility to secure their weapons from those who have no business with access to them.

It would be different if the “progressives” were discussing this situation in good faith – but they are not…while they accuse us of being afraid, it is actually they who are cowering in fear and this fear simply prevents them from understanding the real problem. They don’t want to solve the problem, they just want the fear to go away.

What they are actually doing is dishonest and about as effective in reducing true gun violence as banning all Harley soft-tails would change auto accident mortality rates. It is nothing but symbolism without substance. Instead of focusing their energy on further restrictions of those of us who have agreed to abide by the social contract, we need to address the evil that causes the trigger to be pulled in the first place.

When I think about the pure illogic of this position, and unfortunately it is a position at the root of all “progressivism”, I get frustrated and soon the frustration turns to anger.

I’ve never claimed to have all the answers but what I do know is that I have never committed murder, I know that outside of war, no one in my family or circle of friends has ever shot anyone and we all have been gun owners for generations. I just have to wonder how rational it is to think that continuing to tighten restrictions (to the point of an outright ban) on people like me will stop the next Adam Lanza or Dylan Klebold.

24 thoughts on “Taking The Bait

  1. I’m sorry I missed the spirited debate about guns yesterday, but I’m going to put my two cents in today.

    I used to be for gun control. I thought if we just disarmed everyone murder and all kinds of violence would finally be eradicated. I’d been mugged only once back then and I didn’t think it would probably happen again. My perspective started to change when we moved from Marin County to Oakland, CA. We didn’t have to move, but we had wanted to restore a historically significant Victorian and while SF had resurrected most of theirs, Oakland had tons still languishing in disrepair.

    Looking back, I would have to say buying a house in Oakland was the biggest mistake of my adult life. It made me question so many things I thought I understood and gun control was one of those. I won’t detail every violent episode my husband and I were exposed to, but I don’t think I’m overstating things when I say Oakland is the Wild West of the Bay Area. The hardest part for me was how rapidly a situation could change. One moment I’m planting roses in the front yard, the next I’m standing over a dead 17 year old, watching his blood run down the hill in front of our house. Every banger in Oakland has a gun, usually many more than any police officer.

    We reacted like most middle class folks, we went to meeting after meeting, started Neighborhood Watch, attended Citizen Police Academy, yada, yada, yada. Since most of the crime in Oakland is gang related and almost all bangers are minorities the whole issue was a political hot potato. Eventually there came a day when I had to admit that if someone broke into our house one night the police were not going to arrive in any timely fashion because Oakland has very few cops. I decided it was time to learn how to use a gun to protect myself.

    My life would have taken a different course had I not moved to Oakland, I never would have had to confront and re-evaluate so many of the liberal ideas I held dear, but once I did, my life could never be the same. I moved to Oakland a typical SF liberal, I’m leaving something else entirely.

    • Trapped, I don’t know when y’all moved to Oakland, but I found it to be very scary in the 80’s and decided against a cheap apartment there. I can completely understand the two opposite worlds between Marin and Oakland, for that is what they are.

      M., the irony is that most of these shooters are registered Democrats…..still, you are a crazyislamaphoberightwingnutdangertosocietyguntotinredneckhomophobe!

  2. Fjf0311,
    Thank you. We actually moved to our rural Lake house in 09 and since then have only visited our Victorian for a night or two at a time, until this January when we moved back in to pack it up and prepare it for sale. We are the lucky ones, we have the financial resources that allowed us to sit out the Real Estate bust and our realtor thinks the house will sell in 3 weeks. Then we are moving to TX or SC.

    Kells,
    Wow, I was in the Bay Area in the 80’s, wonder if we ever met? Bet we would have had big fun.

    Yes, almost all the shooters here are Dems and most of my neighbors either think I’m kidding when I talk politics, which isn’t often anymore or they tell me “you don’t understand” over and over. They just can’t believe “one of their own” has left the fold so completely. My husband and I talk a lot about how Oakland changed us, how it has isolated us and damaged us. I hope we can look back in 5-10 years and see something positive that came from our tenure here.

    Sometimes I daydream about mandatory “Oakland time” for Progs like Chris Matthews who have only lived in safe, secure, suburbs with little diversity. Confronting reality in a place like Oakland should be required for all university professors, politicians & journalists or anyone else who seeks to tell us how to live our lives.

    • Yes, yes! Chris Matthews should do his time in Oakland. I went from the Pacific Heights to the Sunset, and that was a rather odd change (Sunset was a bit “hippyish” then.) I then settled in Burlingame and was very pleased (didn’t get all that fog accompanied by zombies……) I have friends in Napa and Mill Valley and family in San Rafael, so I completely understand the disconnect you speak of…….it was the best of times, it was the worst of times…..that’s CA

    • Trapped,

      Wife and two Daughters just went to Charleston …. liked it a lot !….a lot of live theatre and cute shops. I remember liking it too years ago. And up the coast from Charleston to NC ….the rural coastal towns.

      Look at rural Texas when you look … not just at San Antone , Austin etc. Ft Worth ( Not Dallas) is the conservative urban part. If you can check out Kerrville-Hunt area…….a driving distance from San Antone.

  3. “For example, in 2011, there was 323 murders committed with a rifle but 496 murders committed with hammers and clubs”

    (I wonder if Home depot will do a backgroud check, and 5 day waitng period on my hammer?)

    • No worries…..will only be a “hold-up” if it says M C Hammer on the App … :- ) .

      Then they tell you ….. ” You can’t touch this “

  4. Don,
    Van Morrison wrote a song about San Anselmo?

    Hubby and I have compromised, looking for house on 2-5 acres near major city. I need to be near Opera, shopping, etc and hubby wants quiet privacy in more rural setting. I will not move to San Antonio because Mayor is La Raza & we try to stay as far away from them as possible. Interested in Fredericksburg-Kerrville area, but probably not big city enough for me so leaning SC at this point-Summerville, Monks Corner areas, don’t want Johns, James, Kiawah Island because don’t want to evacuate when they have hurricanes.

    Hubby has ?’s for you about Texas, where could we live on 5 acres in safe area and be 30-40 minutes from major city?
    How strong is the “Blue” component in TX & how do u see that impacting TX in the future?
    What are your thoughts about the illegals in TX & how do they impact your quality of life?

    Thank You

  5. The San Anselmo Reference is in “Madame George” I think … But mi esposa is the Van Fan more then me.

    You REALLY don’t want to know MY thoughts on Illegals in Texas … it is bad in Texas. Kerrville is about 1 hour and a bit from San Antone….5 acres MORE than do-able. You would like it because it has a Sonoma-esque quality about it. I would think the rural area outside of Ft. Worth would be do-able but don’t know the details…..just what I’ve driven through. So those two areas. You could prolly be 40 min easier to Ft.Worth rather than Kerrville….but it’s flat. More remoteness is possible outside of Kerrville…to the Hunt side. And Kerrville is cute. Opera would be had in Dallas- Ft.Worth AND in San Antone both I think.

    Was in Deally Plaza up the block from the Train station a couple of years ago in Aug…. IT WAS HOT….HOT HOT HOT. But Ft Worth is more Conservative … I find nice peops there. The Blue is a definite Negative impact ….. more from the Illegals and their supporters than from ex-pat Californios though. I think the Blue element is going to be Bad…..but I think that is true Everywhere . I’ve seen Blogs where people are encouraging Conservatives to move to Idaho and Montana because the locals don’t like all the Calif and east coast Blue-trash moving there. Texas has a big Population…..bigger than SC with which to fight it.

    I like the attitude here in TX … there is a feeling of freedom and Can do….. My Wife and Girls ( allthough they are both ensconced in Ivy-league Sh-tholes at this time) all said they felt Proud to say they were from Texas while talking with peops in Charleston. All of our ducklings were born here so they really ARE Texian ! But you know there is a mix like anywhere else and of course there’s the FSA crowd….Houston is awful wrt that. You are looking for a Community though right? Where there are Conservative Traditions haven’t already been swallowed in the ennui of liberalism…..THAT still exits in Texas in Many many places.

    I don’t know but that Charleston might have its own Liberal Crowd…busy crowding out the Traditional habits. Summerville is a suburb as you know. It could have more of the Tradition Conservative spirit about it . Sumpter is an absolute Progressive PIT….drugs and the usual Progressive hallmarks of Disfunction and excuse. So that element DOES esist in SC. But my impression is that in a similar vien to Texas, the Conservative underpinning is quite strong. In EITHER place….Conservatives can no longer be passive. You must join with like-minded folks once you settle and Fight the MElfamy’s and James McFlys within either state. If you are not doing a Starker Exchange or something…..why not take a Temporary place in SC….then Trip to Texas and see and feel the Socio-Political Climate. It is a somewhat varied state climate wise and topographically.

    But Truth is I have an Affection for SC too…U prolly can tell. My better half informed me….”She could live happily in Charleston”….but then she is more Urban-fillic than I. And she was responding to just those things you were mentioning…theatre and and the like. I will probably never leave Texas….there’s something here which just draws me and I resonate with. But I like SC a lot too.

  6. Alaska is an odd place. Our population is mostly conservative to the libertarian end of the pool. The only way a Democrat won a Senate seat was he ran against someone who had been convicted in federal court a week prior to the election. But we are also have a liberal minority. Oddly, almost none of them want gun control. Maybe they got here from Oregon or New Jersey thinking gun control was a good idea, but the day they were hiking and they saw grizzly sign on the trail, they became gun folk. It’s just a natural progression when you live with large predators. So, I have difficulty wrapping my mind around the idea that people living in large cities with human predators believe that it’s a good idea for regular people not to have guns.

    So, here’s a story from the other side. About 20 years ago, there was a man who was mentally ill. Well … actually,by all accounts, he was a nice normal guy until he had a brain tumor removed and then he started to show signs of occasional delusions. He was sharing a house with three other men. He became convinced that these men were plotting to kill him, so late one night, while his housemates slept, he took a hammer and ended the threat to himself.

    There was no gun on the premise, but there were signs that the third man may have awakened and tried to get away. I’ve often wondered what the outcome might have been had he had a gun when his roommate burst through the door.

    Maybe 30 years ago, there was a guy out in one of our villages. He was very drunk and probably the guy he was mad at was also very drunk. He beat his drinking buddy to death with the shoulder-blade of a moose.

    I worked for community mental health for 15 years and during that time we had several suicides. Mental illness and suicide walk hand-in-hand. None were committed with a gun.

    Alaska has probably the highest rate of gun ownership in the US and we have a pretty high murder rate and a fairly high murder with gun rate. But this shows that guns aren’t necessary to kill people and when the time comes to kill yourself or someone else and you can’t get a gun — a moose’s skeleton will do just as well.

    • That last story is almost a Cain /Able fable …. death by the bones of former animals !

      Alaska has major RINOs too …. Linda Murkowsky …. that charming Daughter of RINO priviledge who thinks Alasaka Political seats are her birth-right and shows her ladylike aplomb by giving the middle -finger during Senate debates ….. She’s a peach.

      • We tried to get rid of Lisa in the 2010 primary.

        For those who don’t know the story, Lisa Murkowski was appointed to her daddy’s Senate seat when Frank Murkowski became Governor. We have since changed the law so a governor can’t do that. It outraged Alaskans because we really do not do nepotism in this state. Lisa won her first real election because the Democrats ran Tony Knowles, former governor who had dropped two important SCOTUS cases just when they were about to be heard, so is likely unelectable in Alaska. She won by less than 1% of the vote.

        Lisa resoundingly lost in the largest GOP primary turnout since statehood in 2010. Conservatives wanted Joe Miller. The Democratic candidate (whose name escapes me now) couldn’t have won against a dead guy and might have lost if he’d been in Mark Begich’s position in 2008 against Ted Stevens. He just was a poor choice. Lisa came back as an independent with a coalition of normally Democratic supports — Native Corporations, unions, plus her usual oil companies — and a $3 million war chest — and she beat Miller by 2% in a three-way race. There’s reason to believe there may have been some voter fraud involved as well. We’re stuck with her for another three years. We’ll concentrate on getting the much more odious Begich out of office for now (2014) and then figure out what to do about her next.

        Alaska has the unfortunate habit of reelecting those with seniority. It makes sense. A small population state has no real power in Congress other than seniority, but we elect these bozos who do not represent us and then we wonder why things are a mess. Alaska is a high-voter turnout state, but sometimes I wonder what my neighbors are thinking when they cast their ballots. Face to face, their conservatives, but Lisa Murkowski is completely not a conservative. Of course, only 34% of the electorate voted for her.

  7. Kels Dear,
    Hubby is not allowed to visit Miss Mona or anyone else without his charming wife in tow. Now why do I think Miss Mona is probably not visited by many hubby’s with their wives?

    Don,
    Thank you so much for all the great info. Probably the thing I love most about TX is the independent spirit of all those strong, opinionated Texans who don’t take any crap. My sentiments exactly! What I don’t love is the illegal situation. You are right in saying we are looking for a traditional community setting, we long to live in America again and the more conservatives, the better. I do worry that wherever we go people will see us as typical Californians, but my hubby says I’m determinedly Midwestern so I hope that shines through to folks.

    We do plan to re-visit both TX and SC as soon as we can sell this house…..I just had to let my dogs out, the prostitute is back with her John again. Anyway, I heard that the libs in Charleston area live in Mt. Pleasant. Hubby’s cousin is a church pastor who is very conservative and lives in Summerville so that draws us too.

    We understand what you say about joining w/like minded folks to fight Prog influence and agree we can’t be passive anymore. It gives us joy to know in the next election our votes will finally not be wasted and we are willing to sell everything and set off on a new adventure, not so easy in middle age, but definitely worthwhile.

    If we settle in TX I hope we are somewhere near you and your family. We’d love to share some Rombauer w/you guys and compare notes on Van Morrison, San Anselmo and lots of other things.

  8. Explaining the 2nd Amendment to liberals is like explaining to a rock its potential to one day become a redwood tree (except the rock might not slip into incoherence and irrelevance if it disagrees with you!). I have given up hope. Seattle PD hosted a gun buy back not to long ago. You might have heard about it in different media coverage. The consensus in the Seattle area was equivalent to people acting as if the Taliban had openly paraded an operational Nuke around the city. On person turned in an empty SAM missile shell and made some cheap change on it. Apparently many people don’t know that those things only fire once and are not reusable? The response from Seattle idiots to that particular story was enough to make me want to throw myself into a vat of acid.

    In response to Utah’s last paragraph, this is what I know:

    I live right across the bridge from Husky Stadium in Seattle. The community that I live in is beginning to deteriorate, despite having the second highest rate of billionaire residence in the country.
    Everything here is pretty close together, and the public transportation is exceptional (as much as I hate to credit the liberals), so I don’t need a car to get anywhere.
    I no longer feel safe walking or commuting anywhere. The hoodlums have been moving into my neighborhood for a while, and their activity is starting the become noticeable. Every day, some piece of property is tagged with graffiti that was not there before. The police are constantly making their rounds, when they were not needed even a year ago.
    A couple nights ago, I made a trip to the local convenient store, while taking a break from a video editing project. While I was waiting in line with my refreshments, a black guy (and I don’t care if your offended of the mention of his skin color) comes in, clad in all black. He walked around the store, talking in a very high tone of voice about how he was a “killer” and a “thug”, and how he was part of such and such gang. He then preceded open a can of beer and grab some other irrelevant items. The clerk then tried to intervene and get him to pay for the items. He basically intimidated and threatened the clerk. He then left the store, once again yelling about how he dared somebody to call the police, and that he would kill the cop and anybody else who got involved. I never saw a gun or any other weapon on him. Furthermore, I was never really scared, as I’am a decent sized guy, and not very many people attempt to pick on me, so I had no immediate worries, though I suspect other shoppers did. I also suspect that he was already under the influence of something, so he most likely was just calling a bluff from the very beginning. The main thing I left that situation with, was the thought that if he had been sincere, and had a gun (or even a knife), and was serious about killing some folks, I could have been laying there dead or bleeding out in a pool of blood. I currently don’t own any firearms, but after that night, and realizing just how quickly my life could have ended that night, I feel the need now, more than ever, to start acquiring firearms and proper training. I refuse to be a victim, and I refuse to go down without a fight. What I feel, is the very thing that gun-control advocate want to rob responsible citizens of. Myself, and many, many, many more just like me, simply don’t want to be victims. That is the spirit of our entire argument that gun-control advocates simply will not see, or blatantly refuse to.

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