Tag Archives: guns

We’ll have to pry away the gun nuts’ ignorance and fear

Um, yeah, this is for illustrative purposes and is not anyone whom I know

I recently was tempted to write a post, in jest, that Colorado’s recent fairly devastating flooding obviously is God’s punishment for Coloradans recently having recalled two state legislators over their support of gun control, but, alas, I let that idea go.

Wingnuts routinely claim that this or that is “God’s punishment” for this or that — as a gay man, apparently, not only do I and my kind “deserve” “God’s punishment” of AIDS, but we also are the cause of hurricanes, tornadoes, earthquakes, terrorist attacks, etc., etc. — but whatever. I don’t believe in God, and so I don’t believe in “punishments” from “God,” and even if there were such a thing as a “punishment” from “God,” no mere human being truthfully could claim to be “God’s” spokesperson who truthfully can pronounce such “punishments.”

That said, the concept of karma makes sense to me, but again, who among us can be an arbiter of karma with any actual knowledge of its workings?

Guns, though, are, in a word, bad. For the very most part.

Those who love guns overwhelmingly are ignorant and thus fearful individuals. Therefore, as President Hopey Changey once put it (accurately), they cling to their guns. Their guns give them a false sense of safety and security, when, ironically, they cannot see that it’s their own ignorance and fear that contributes to the violent environment of which they’re terrified.

While I don’t advocate that the guvmint attempt to take everyone’s guns — a position that most of us on the left are accused of holding by the wingnuts — and while I generally support the Second Amendment, it’s incredibly bad public policy for fearful, ignorant people to have such easy access to guns.

When you are drunk and/or drugged and angry and/or frightened, or even sober but angry and/or frightened, maybe having easy access to a gun isn’t such a great idea.

Fucktards like wannabe cop George Zimmerman should not be allowed anywhere near firearms. Frankly, I suspect that he carried a gun while he played cop in that gated community in Florida because he wanted to shoot someone, and that Trayvon Martin was just the poor individual who was the victim of Zimmerman’s quest for a “reason” to shoot someone.

While I can’t see that Zimmerman, as the aggressor, was acting in actual self-defense, guns can be used for actual self-defense, but it troubles me than in the year 2013, when we have so many other technological achievements, cops and others deem a lethal firearm as the best or even the only way to practice actual self-defense in many if not most if not even all cases.

How many times do we read news stories about someone who was unarmed but who nonetheless was shot to death by cops, such as the unarmed 24-year-old black man Jonathon Ferrell, whom a young white cop shot 10 times in North Carolina this past weekend? From what I can surmise, Ferrell, who had just been in a car wreck, was in shock, and so he came in the direction of the cop, probably for help, but did the cop really have to shoot at him — 12 times (hitting him 10 times)?

How can any of us, with a straight face, claim that Trayvon Martin and Jonathon Ferrell were not the victims of racial profiling?

This isn’t all abstract to me; gun violence recently hit close to home.

My 25-year-old nephew sits in a jail cell in Phoenix after he shot and killed another man earlier this month. Details of the incident, as they have reached me through relatives and as I have been able to find them on the Internet, still are sketchy; my nephew claims that he was ambushed or about to be ambushed, that two or more other males had set him up and were about to perpetrate physical violence upon him (to “jump” him, in the parlance).

My understanding is that thus far, there is no witness who is disputing my nephew’s account, as the others who were present at the shooting have evaded the Phoenix police, who would love to question them.

From what details I’ve heard, if they are factually correct, my best guess is that my nephew at worst ultimately will be convicted of manslaughter, but conceivably could be acquitted for the reason of self-defense if he and his defense team can demonstrate that he used the gun in self-defense, which, I understand, Arizona law, like Florida law, allows.

My understanding is that my nephew owned and carried the gun entirely within Arizona law, and that before the shooting incident he had no violent criminal record.

I consider my nephew to be innocent of any crime until and unless he is found otherwise by a jury of his peers (and exhausts any and all appeals, should that happen), but would I choose to carry a gun in public like we’re still living in the wild, wild West?

No.

Do I want to even see people — those of the non-law-enforcement variety, I mean — carrying guns on their persons while I’m out and about in public?

No, absofuckinglutely not, and I’m thankful that I live in California, which is a “non-permissive open carry” state, and not in one of the “permissive open carry” (or otherwise more gun-permissive) states, such as Arizona and most of the red states.

Do you really fucking need to bring a gun into, say, a Starbucks?

It’s in the news today that Starbucks’ CEO has asked that Starbucks’ patrons don’t bring guns into Starbucks locations, but that in those states where it is not illegal to openly carry firearms, Starbucks won’t ask those who are packing pistols to leave.

Where it comes to our rights, our rights end where others’ rights begin.

We sane Americans — we non-gun nuts — have the right, when we’re out and about in public, not to have to see fucktards who shouldn’t be even allowed to own a gun openly carrying a gun as though we’re still living in the wild West. We have the right not to have to fear for our own safety because some fearful idiot is carrying a gun in the name of his or her own “safety.”

Americans have the right to protect ourselves, but, it seems to me, most shooting deaths in the United States of America are not the results of cases of actual self-defense, but are cases of murder, suicide and accidental shootings (and, I suppose I should add, cases of trigger-happy, jumpy cops, many if not most of whom are white cops who are racial profilers and who probably are too young and immature to be cops anyway).

When guns for the most part cease to be about actual self-defense, it seems to me, they have become a public menace, and no one has the right to pose a menace to the public.

At this point, I think it’s fairly safe to say, the widespread ownership of and easy access to guns in the United States causes more harm than good. (I don’t even need to mention the latest gun massacre on Monday that left 12 people dead at the Washington Navy Yard, because these gun massacres are so common in the U.S. these days.)

But gun control, as Colorado voters have just demonstrated, is an incredibly sticky political subject.

The ignorant and the fearful will cling to their guns, which, the late gun nut Charlton Heston famously declared, we’ll have to pry from their “cold, dead hands.”  That’s their way.

Trying to pry the fucktards’ guns from their still-living hands, though, perhaps is the wrong approach.

It’s the ignorance and the fear, I think, that we have to tackle first, because it’s their ignorance and their fear that makes the gun nuts cling so steadfastly to their guns.

After all, ultimately, it’s not guns that kill people. It’s ignorant and fearful people who, using guns, kill people…

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Freedom is impossible without reasonable gun control

I don’t want a gun. I don’t like guns.

But I’m OK with you having a gun — within reason.

When the Second Amendment was crafted and ratified way the fuck back in 1791, we didn’t have the assault weapons, these weapons of mass destruction, that we have today. There weren’t mass school or movie-theater shootings when the “founding fathers” were alive, and no sane and honest person would assert that in the Second Amendment the “founding fathers” meant to endorse the ability of any civilian to shoot up public spaces, killing as many victims as humanly possible with a firearm or firearms.

It’s a long-standing principal in American law that the individual’s rights end where others’ rights — which includes, of course, the right to be safe in public — begin.

So: If you don’t have a violent criminal history and you haven’t been deemed by a court of law to be mentally ill with a propensity toward violence, I’m OK with you owning and safely storing a handgun for personal protection at home and/or owning and safely storing a rifle for hunting (even though I myself never could blow away a defenseless animal, which is not an act of manliness or courage, but is an act of cowardice).

Beyond that, however, yeah, I have a problem.

I don’t want you owning the more destructive, more lethal weapons that the members of the military or the police are able to use.

You may not legally possess an over-the-shoulder rocket-propelled-grenade launcher, so why may you legally possess a military-style assault rifle?

No, the “guvmint” is not coming for your guns and going to impose martial law. The federal “guvmint,” for the most part, doesn’t give a flying fuck about you as long as you pay your federal income taxes and don’t grievously violate federal law.

Wingnutty paranoia over such events that very, very most likely never will occur — um, Barack Obama is not going to round you up in his socialist concentration camps, since not only is he not a socialist, but is a center-right DINO, but he never would have the support of the right-wing U.S. military for such an act — is not justification for allowing every Jeb, Zeke, Cooter and Skeeter to own his own personal weapons of mass destruction.

The Second Amendment never was intended to allow such insanity.

All of our rights are subject to being curbed when our exercise of them begins to harm others. The welfare of the whole trumps the wishes and desires of the individual.

Without such safeguards and limitations and boundaries, it becomes a fucking free-for-all, and therefore there no longer is freedom for all, but only freedom for the few who don’t give a fuck about others’ rights, such as others’ right to public safety.

I don’t want a gun right now, but yes, I want the right to own one in the future, and so, within reason, I support the Second Amendment. But it’s not the “guvmint” that I’m concerned about. It’s the gun nuts.*

*Speaking of the gun nuts, the National Rifle Association’s assertion that it’s hypocritical and wrong that President Obama’s two daughters have more protection than does the average American public school child is insane.

It’s much, much more likely that a member of the presidential family would be targeted by some gun nut that the average American public school child would be. With Obama’s daughters the actual threat is there, so the appropriate protection, naturally, is there. That makes fucking sense. Guns in all of our public schools — which is what the NRA explicitly advocates — does not.

I take the NRA’s inability and/or refusal to make a rational argument as proof that it’s becoming extinct, that it’s a dinosaur whose days are numbered.

You can watch the NRA’s latest wingnutty spot here and practically smell the desperate NRA’s rotting decay.

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There goes the men’s vote

Rick Santorum (centre) attends a prayer service at the Path of the Cross church in San Juan, Puerto Rico, this week

AFP photo

While as president of the United States the “Christo”fascist Prick Santorum would be dangerous, Gallup’s daily tracking polls show that the wingnut doesn’t have even the support of a full one-third of the Repugnican Tea Party — thank God. (Prick is shown above “praying” in Puerto Rico, which he says should embrace English, despite the fact that the nation has been Spanish-speaking since shortly after Christopher Columbus claimed it for the Spanish crown way back in 1493…) [This reminds me of that wonderful saying of anthropologist Wade Davis: “The world in which you were born is just one model of reality. Other cultures are not failed attempts at being you; they are unique manifestations of the human spirit.”])    

The more papal pronouncements that “Christo”fascist Repugnican Tea Party presidential wannabe Prick Santorum makes, the more obvious it is why he lost his last election — re-election to the U.S. Senate for Pennsylvania — by a whopping 18 percent.

Santorum’s latest crusade for the Vatican is his promise that as president, he would instruct his attorney general — remember former wingnut Attorney General John Ashcroft putting giant drapes in front of a U.S. Justice Department statue with (gasp!) a bared boob? — to prosecute those accused of distributing pornographic material that the Santorum administration (shudder) deems “obscene.”

Wow. It was one thing, I suppose, for Santorum to pick on women, opposing not just abortion but even birth control, but now he is threatening millions and millions of American men that he will cut off their steady supply of “obscene” pornography.

“Obscene” pornography — and I’m not sure what counts as “obscene” to Prick Santorum; would Playboy be “obscene”? (It very apparently would be to John Ashcroft, the kind of attorney general that Santorum would pick) — “can be very damaging,” Santorum has decreed papally.

Emissions from fossil fuels are far more damaging than is pornography — I mean, no more Homo sapiens and pornography certainly will be a moot point — and alcohol and tobacco products demonstrably are “very damaging,” as are sugary and fatty foods, but Santorum has yet to tackle any of those evils.

Corporations, which put obscene profiteering way above people and the planet and which crush the human spirit like something out of “The Matrix,” are “very damaging,” as is permanent bogus warfare for the war profiteering of the military-industrial complex (indeed, military overspending perhaps is the No. 1 factor in the collapse of the American empire). Is Prick Santorum going to take on the sacred cows that are the corporations and the military-industrial complex?

And how about guns — aren’t guns more dangerous than is pornography? Don’t guns kill far more people than does porn? Is Prick Santorum, who is so fucking eager to protect us all from ourselves, going to take on the gun lobby? 

In the same year (1973) that the U.S. Supreme Court decided the issue of abortion in Roe vs. Wade, in Miller vs. California the court decided the issue of “obscenity” with what came to be called “the Miller test,” which essentially leaves it to the states or other locales to determine what is and what is not “obscene.” (And obviously, what is widely considered to be “obscene” in Salt Lake City, for instance, and what is considered to be “obscene” in such places as New York City, Los Angeles and San Francisco are very different.)

The Miller ruling fairly explicitly prohibits the federal government from imposing a nationally uniform standard on “obscenity,” yet this is exactly what Prick Santorum promises to do as president.

Apparently, all that “the Miller test” allows in all 50 states is mere nudity (without sexual activity, presumably — and I suppose that masturbation would be sexual activity, and perhaps even an erection is indicative of sexual activity) and, according to Wikipedia’s entry on “obscenity,” “male-to-female vaginal-only penetration that does not show the actual ejaculation of semen, sometimes referred to as ‘soft-core’ pornography wherein the sexual act and its fulfillment (orgasm) are merely implied to happen rather than explicitly shown.” (So, if Prick Santorum’s crusade against porn were taken to its extreme, apparently Playboy would be allowed, but not much else. [And indeed, Playboy is pretty tame by today’s standards of porn, probably so that it can be distributed in all 50 states without Miller-related local interference.])

In my book, Miller vs. California is woefully outdated — indeed, the availability of wonderfully raunchy Internet porn in all 50 states, which probably could not have been foreseen in 1973, pretty much makes Miller moot — and thus deeply flawed. In my book, the First Amendment covers all forms of sexually oriented expression with the exception of such things as child pornography and other forms of sexually oriented activity in which the participants are not consenting but are forced. (It is legally recognized that minors, because of their young age, cannot consent, and that certain intellectually incompetent individuals cannot consent, either.) Other than that, willing, consenting participants who are of age should be able to have just about whatever they want to do sexually be visually recorded if they so wish.

I probably digress a little, but I know that millions and millions of men — and, of course, plenty of liberated women — of all sexual orientations are with me when we say collectively to Prick Santorum: You will have to pry our “obscene” porn from our cold, dead fingers.

This “freedom” that the wingnuts bloviate about so much, yet so many of them want to impose their own backasswards religious and “moral” beliefs on the rest of us just like the theofascists of the Taliban wish to impose their own backasswards “moral” code and religious beliefs upon other people. That’s not fucking “freedom.” That’s theofascism. That’s why I call these far-right-wing traitors “Christo”fascists (with the quotation marks because the one thing they most definitely are not is Christian.)

It is very simple, ridiculously simple: If you oppose abortion, then do not have an abortion. If you oppose contraception, then do not use contraception (although those who contribute to overpopulation are major fucking assholes). If you oppose same-sex marriage, then do not marry someone of your own sex. If you oppose pornography, then do not consume pornography.

As I pointed out, Americans’ freedom allows them — us — to possess and/or to consume or use even things that demonstrably, and not even arguably, are harmful to us, such as firearms, cigarettes, booze, certain prescription drugs that easily are abused, and junk food.

Our personal “salvation” is our own to work out as individuals — it’s not the job of Prick Santorum, acting as the puppet of Pope Palpatine, to “save” us against our will.

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Palin-Quayle on God, guns ’n’ grizzlies

Former Alaska Governor and 2008 Republican vice ...

Sarah Palin

Sarah Palin

Associated Press and Reuters photos

The 46-year-old Sarah Palin-Quayle pontificates in front of the National Rifle Association’s annual convention yesterday just before its cross-burning ceremony. Palin-Quayle’s juvenile, Valley-girl-like word choice, intonation and body language should come as no surprise, given that her main means of political communication is Twitter.

I would say that the 2008 presidential election never ended for Repugnican Sarah Palin-Quayle, who refuses to go the fuck away, but it’s more accurate, I think, to say that her 1984 beauty pageant never ended for her. Indeed, the former Miss Alaska pageant contestant (she lost that contest, too) reminds me of a former Miss California Carrie Prejean

— who has gone on to become a right-wing politician two decades from now, replete with the cross pendants

Sarah Palin

Associated Press photo

— that both Palin-Quayle and Prejean prominently publicly display as proof of their favor with God and Jesus.

Palin-Quayle is in the news yet again, telling the KKK-like National Rifle Association yesterday that surely President Barack Obama would ban guns if he could, and that it’s up to God’s warriors like she and the members of the NRA to prevent that God-awful scenario from happening.

Um, Jesus Christ probably would ban guns, but that’s another blog post…

Actually, Obama The Great Centrist never would ban guns* — he’s way too pussy to do anything radical — but the message that “President Sambo is a-gonna take away yer guns!” resonates well with the white-supremacist crowd that Grand Dragoness Palin-Quayle was addressing yesterday.

Probably even more ludicrous, though, than Palin-Quayle’s lie that the black president is after whitey’s arsenals is her assertion that she also made yesterday at another appearance that “mama grizzlies” — pissed-off Repugnican and other right-wing women, especially mothers, I’m guessing she means by “mama grizzlies” — are going to “rise up” and “take this country back.”

Aside from the fact that there aren’t enough far-right-wing women to hold a fucking Tupperware party, much less (much more?) take over the nation, I like the “mama grizzly” rhetoric, because this is what Palin-Quayle actually thinks should be done with grizzlies:

Yes, that is a photo of the wildlife-lovin’ Palin-Quayle in the governor’s office when she was governor of the Podunk State of the Great White North.

As Palin-Quayle is against women’s right to choose what to do with their own uteri, and supports the right wing’s subjugation of women in general, it is appropriate that she’s now blathering about her support of “mama grizzlies” when we have photographic evidence of the fact that she likes to pal around with grizzlies that have been slaughtered.

Indeed, like Cruella de Vil loved her Dalmation puppies, planning to make them into fur coats, Palin-Quayle thinks that mama grizzlies make great sofa covers.

You betcha.

P.S. Here’s a photo of Chatty Cathy Palin-Quayle at yet another event on Wednesday. I love the subtlety, don’t you?

Sarah Palin

Associated Press photo

*Indeed, The Associated Press notes:

Gun enthusiasts [that’s a nice, “professional” way of saying “gun nuts”] have trumpeted fears that their rights would erode under a Democrat-led White House and Congress, but President Barack Obama has largely been silent on issues such as reviving an assault weapons ban or strengthening background checks at gun shows. Obama also signed a law allowing people to carry loaded guns in national parks.

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