Monday, October 2, 2017

Bring out your I need a machine gun for self defense arguments (Las Vegas terrorist act)

We interrupt my blogcation to bring you some thoughts about the latest bit of gun violence in the United States.

Last night in Las Vegas, there was a mass shooting incident. The news broke before I went to bed, but I decided to wait until morning to write this post (in hopes of having better information). As I write this, the latest death toll figure is fifty-eight dead and a couple of hundred people injured--and the number is still climbing. So if I understand it properly, a sniper with an automatic weapon (I heard "machine gun") opened fire from a upper story hotel window unto a crowd at a concert two hundred yards away.

I have already seen the knee-jerk NRA self-defense argument that a plane, a car, a bomb, evil voodoo, could do the same amount of damage. Honestly, this argument does not hold for this incident, due to the difficulties of delivering said items to their target. And in this situation, with its security, if you wanted to to generate high causality numbers, your best bet was a machine gun or a rocket. And the last time I checked rockets are harder to obtain than guns.

(For those who are curious, I spent a lot of time studying the terror act of attempting to assassinate Adolf Hitler--the problem was delivering the bomb to the target. [Not that I view it as an act of terrorism, but some people do...and some of them are nice people, according to our President and his fan club.]  I have studied this problem and have came to the conclusion that bullets are easier to deliver to certain target-rich environments.)

I also have seen the knee-jerk "good guy with a gun" argument. Are you really telling me that no one attending a country music concert in Las Vegas had a gun? It is an open-carry state--there had to be dozens of guns there.

On top of this, I have also seen the "We need guns to protect ourselves from Hillary Clinton and Obama seizing power" argument. (At first, I thought that it was a tasteless joke, then I realized that the person was being serious--they really think that Clinton and Obama are going to overthrow the government of Donald Trump--a fact that I discovered from their wall; they have been screaming this ever since the election.)

So the gun freedom nuts are already out in force defending their right to obtain a machine gun and open fire on an innocent crowd. Or in this case, other people's ability to do such.

And all this reminds me of the satire I am writing.

In my satire, there is a series of domestic terror attacks; each being worse than the previous. And a talking head on FOX News screaming, "the right to keep and bear arms"--and in the end, arguing that they need to be allowed to keep nuclear weapons, so they can defend themselves from terrorists and the government.

I did mention that this was a satire, right?

By the way, I don't want my satire to based on reality. But people will argue that it is. (In my story, it is a sniper overlooking Times Square on New Year's Eve.)

Nor did I want a new benchmark of the level of violence (death toll) that we are willing to tolerate because we must have our phallus-extending guns. My old benchmark was Sandy Hook--if we could not get a reform of gun control laws in this country after Sandy Hook, then it would never happen. (This is also something I play with in my satire---having an incident of a thousand people not being enough to tilt the balance.) Now, the official benchmark is fifty-eight dead, two hundred injured--possibly higher--and we still are going to allow the NRA tell us that we are not allowed to keep guns out of the hands of crazy people.

It is a sad day when my satire starts to look more reasonable than what is actually going on. Good job, America.

Sorry, I think that we have a problem here.


Morgan Drake Eckstein said...

Latest--59 dead, 527 injured.

Morgan Drake Eckstein said...

One could claim that one can kill just as many with a bucket of soapy frogs, or a welding mallet, or evil voodoo hex power, and it still does not negate the fact that a gun is a very easy way to rack up a death toll.

Morgan Drake Eckstein said...

I don't remember the death toll in Boston being this high. And I consider 9/11 and Oklahoma to be special cases. If you are an ordinary crazy (no chemistry or pilot license), a gun is the way to go.

I don't believe in making it easy to rack up a death toll. But in the end, we end up with people arguing that we should outlaw hammers (and everything else you can kill someone with) before we reform gun laws.

The only thing harder than reforming gun laws is to agree that we need universal mental health care.

Morgan Drake Eckstein said...

Sometime in the next couple days, I expect Donald Trump to go on a Twitter rant calling for more people to be armed. There will be no sufficient changes to the gun laws; crazy people will still be able to buy guns to shoot the people that the voices say need to die. You don't need to worry one iota about your gun rights. Nothing short of a nuclear bomb is going to convince NRA sponsored politicians to change the laws to prevent crazy people from getting enough firepower to make the news. As I note in my satire, a thousand people killed in one event would not be enough to create a change in gun laws, especially with a President who thought that France and Great Britain terror attacks was caused by those countries not having enough guns. You do not need to worry about your gun rights; nothing of a nuke will cause politicians to act against the wishes of the NRA.