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Apr 24, 2007

Completely Wrapped Up With The Gun

Economist-Guns

Fancy the day The BAG and The Economist are in full concurrence.

Having been in Spain for eight months now, with two or three more to go, the main trepidation I have about coming home is portrayed above.  In an ex-pat mind, what I've come to appreciate about America, more than anything, is how preoccupied it is with violence, and, even more so, with fear.

What is interesting to me about this cover is how it simultaneously hits America's problem with guns and its hysteria over the threat of violence.  (On the newsstand over here, it's the latter meaning that jumps out at you, but can you feel both from home?)

As the Democratic party shifts to the middle/middle-right to arrest the far-right radical freaks that have taken over the country, the price, it seems, is that liberals must play along, waiting (for the party) to acquire more leverage before pushing "all out" on issues now being sacrificed -- such as gun control.

I'm proud of those of you who raised your voices against fire arms in the discussion threads this past week.  I understand we have our own hornets' nest here, even in the liberal side of the liberal blogosphere?  Or maybe -- my bad -- you couldn't tell.  (What was it one reader called gun control, the "third rail" of Democratic politics?)

If, beyond the media coverage, I've been mostly reticent about Virginia Tech, the massacre brings out two issues I feel strongly about (one, which never gained traction when it could and should have, and another, which seems hopelessly interwoven into the American fabric).  One is gun control.  I'm against all civilians owning guns ... unless you're a licensed hunter, sober, outside the city limits, without a criminal or mental health record, with a hunting rifle, with a safety lock.  The other is the neurotic package of fear mongering, glorification of violence and preoccupation with fear.

What The Economist offers is not just a pointed image, but a pointed phrase.  "America's tragedy" refers not just to an incident, or a specific political issue but a national frame of mind.

(image: The Economist . April 21,  2007. Cover. economist.com)

Comments

Great, if not done lots of times before, image. I think it's interesting they actually used one of the weapons from the VaT tragedy to create the image (the Walther P-22). Extra points for attention to detail.

As for how powerful it is, hmmmm, I'm not so sure. I might guess that the people on the pro-gun side of things find the image uplifting. And the ones on the other side, well, as I said, it's well done but hardly original.

I would like to add a cultural comment. A few years back when camouflage chic was all the fashion rage- it struck me how it would be totally out of the question in Egypt to wear something like that. You would be arrested for falsely impersonating someone in the military when you were not on active duty. I hope this comment would not illicit "they hate us for our freedom" - the point I am making is that in other countries there are boundaries on who can own a gun.

So no more play time with guns? No shooting skeet?

I have a feeling you are an urbanite. Gun control seems to be a particularly difficult issue for the rural/urban split in this country. I am probably farther to the left than you are, but as far as gun control is concerned, I am personally against it. That being said, there's nothing that should stop municipalities from passing gun laws that they feel will make them safer. As long as our representation is weighted towards the rural part of the country, you will not see any gun control in the way you present it. To me, that's a good thing.

It's disgusting that this tragic event is used as a case study for some people's pet issues. Gun control has little to do with this massacre. Crazy people do crazy things. You can not stop it. That's part of the price in living in a free society. Unless you wouldn't mind the warantless wiretapping program to be expanded a bit further...

The level of hipocracy amoung liberals is astounding. How you people pick and choose what rights to uphold. You will defend to the death the right to free speach, but when it comes to the second ammendment, that is a different story. The bottom line is, the gun owning, right wing, conservative christian, people in this nation arent the problem, they are what makes America great.

Oh, and Francis? Just because you own a gun, go to church and vote republican doesn't make you a part of America's greatness. Do you help your neighbor? Then you are part of America's greatness.

An atheist who volunteers at the local clinic or soup kitchen is an infinitely better American than the one who thinks that punching the clock at 10AM every Sunday, flicking the tab for any idiot with an "R" at the end of their name in November, and owning a small arsenal in preparation for the end times makes one a "good American".

Is that the shape of one Cho's guns? My first impression was that it was an older gun, maybe because the white color of the flag seems old and worn.

The Economist uses "America's Tragedy" on the cover, and quite appropriately. But the UK seems to be having its own problems with violence - attacks with knives, since guns aren't so freely available. So even without guns, what is it about those societies that makes this happen?

Francis: "You will defend to the death the right to free speach". Did you read some of the previous threads on this incident? Quite a few people thought that NBC shouldn't have aired the shooter's photos and videos.

If you mean to say that there's a lot of hypocrisy around the free speech issue, then I agree. Even the people who defend free speech at all costs - when the speech is something that doesn't particularly bother them - have their own conditions about when speech should be protected and when it should be prohibited.

verplanck colvin: "It's disgusting that this tragic event is used as a case study for some people's pet issues. Gun control has little to do with this massacre."

I've heard this attitude a lot, and I just don't get it. When a guy like this buys guns legally and then uses them to commit a massacre, of course people should talk about issue of gun control. Just like if there were an accident at a nuclear power plant, the residents near that plant would want to talk about nuclear power, safety issues, how to prevent accidents, what to do in the case of accidents, etc. And if there was a big power blackout, people would want to know why it happened and what should be done to prevent it. But we're not supposed to mention guns after this? (This and all the other school and workplace shootings.)

Britian, the U.K. did eliminate private ownership of handguns about 8 years ago. It was successful. Many friends I talk to (I am a gun owner) have one or more, plus ammunition, hidden. It is a natinal fact. Seriously!, guns are buried in cellard, in the yards, in the woods. There are millions silently hidden away. So the Economist can look down on us for yet another issue. Our failure with guns, and they are right.

It was a long haul. The UK paid private owners a fair market value for the guns. Several billion pounds. Lots of contentious lawsuits. In the end, it was done. They confiscated about 7 million personal weapons, sporting and hunting arms, target guns... the whole lot.

When you count that Americans are estimated to own 115 million handguns, the problem becomes exponential. I am in favor of voluntary surrender to a gov't agency for fair value. To take them off the street. That sounds reasonable.

The gun issue resembles the abortion issue to me. Both sides unwilling to give an inch. The "foot in the door" theory. Like the liberal dismay last week over the partial birth abortion ruling. An abhorrent practice, but defended by liberals to the death. Why? Because it sets a precident.

The same with the 2nd Amendment Rights fanatics and the NRA. They defend the manufacturers who mass produce Saturday Night Specials, $39 handguns in pawn shops - and I have seen them in my personal research, they also sell single bullets for $.50 cents apiece, another practice that shold be outlawed. The NRA defends military assualt rifles for civilians and high capacity magazines. They defend gun shows and unlimited sales between private individuals. Why? Probably the same reason. Give the antis an inch and they will take a mile.

I am a life member of the NRA. I joined 25 years ago when the organization was reasonable. Now, I am repulsed by their voting block "single issue" support. It doesn't matter if you are corrupt politican, if you think global warming is a hoax like Colburn of Oklahoma, if you are a child molester, if you have the personal morals of Osama BinLaden.

If you support gun rights, you are Their Man. And the unwillingness of liberals to compromise has driven them to this position. It is intractable.

Ummabdullah, the difference between England and America is that there is a limit to the number of people you can kill by chasing them around with a knife.

Violence is a problem in every single country. It's only a question of degree. There are two ways to get a fairly nonviolent society that have been proven.

One is through total and brutal repression. Nazi Germany and Afghanistan under the Taliban were both praised as being very crime free.

The second is through having a small homogenous community with a high income that is fairly evenly distributed and invested in development rather than military spending, the so-called "Scandinavian Economics". Different variables make this impossible to replicate in many non European countries, at least for the present time. However some countries in South America are making strides in this direction in spite of poverty. However, as long as the poverty is endemic the crime will be, too. The small oil rich Gulf states have created a semblence of this without democracy and with a great deal of inequity between the natives and the imported servant class still in place, which means that should the oil money ever dry up they will have as big a violence problem as anybody.

Culture and religion really play almost no role, which comes as a huge surprise to many people, though I don't really see why.

However in Munich, a major European city, there were only 11 murders the last year I was there, and an arrest was made in all of them. There is something to be said for their way of doing things. But like I said you cannot just superimpose that system on third world countries or even on America and get the same results. First of all you need the economic health. That's the most important thing.

Violence in England is, not surprisingly, centered in defunct industrial centers with high out-of-work immigrant populations. Any reasonably intelligent person can take it from there.

ummabdulla: "I've heard this attitude a lot, and I just don't get it. When a guy like this buys guns legally and then uses them to commit a massacre, of course people should talk about issue of gun control."

It seems fairly common sense to me. The college was a gun free zone. Regardless of where/how he got the gun is not irrelavant, but the lesser issue, as the Virginia Tech campus was 'gun controlled', and that fact did nothing to prevent the kid from murdering 32 people. In fact, it probably helped him for two reasons:

#1. No one expects anyone to have a gun. When someone walks in with a gun and starts firing, the immediate response is flight as opposed to fight. We have been taught for years to do what your told, and the bad guy will let you go. (that goes for hostage situations, bank teller training, gas station workers, etc.) Obviously in these troubled times, that does not work anymore. If we do not defend ourselves, we will be murdered without a fight.

#2. If someone had a gun on that campus legally: Let's say, the teacher who selflessly gave his life for his students, Professor Liviu Librescu, (please keep in mind, I am not saying he was a gun advocate, just recognizing him as a hero that saved lives. Unfortunatley at the expense of his own.) He may have taken the count of 32 down to 5 + the murderer. Is there really anything wrong with defending ourselves? Or training those put into authority to defend those who they are responsible for?

I know the argument that something could go wrong, and the instructor, or a vigilante evil conservative redneck hater could accidently shoot someone innocent. You are right. He could. But isn't the murderer going on a shooting rampage already in the process of shooting someone innocent? Isn't it worth that chance to save lives?

I don't know. I am just an evil conservative myself, but I would rather have a chance than be a sitting duck.

joe

The gun is pointing to the right.* The artist, Kandinsky, who analyzed visual movement and line in his many writings, stated that a movement, pointing to the right was "positive," eliciting positive feelings, while movement, pointing to the left, produced "negative" feelings. This, of course, was intuitive reasoning, but I have found his idea comfortable to accept, especially, as an artist.

So, the gun, here, points to the right. Is the Economist suggesting (subliminally) in this image that guns are okay? A good thing? Or, is it only an innocent pictoral device, designed to lead you to open the magazine to the next page?

*Or, maybe, even stretching it a bit: pointing "right" to the "right" wing which supports gun "rights."

Joe, do you pack heat everywhere you go? Do you slip on that shoulder holster every morning, just in case? What does that say about our lives if we feel we must do that?

College kids and their teachers should not need to go to class armed.

Is the gun sufficiently defining the US? It seems to me to be in a void of other powerful symbols.
What is the state of mental health in this powerful, and aggressive nation?

How much support is there for mental health and universal health insurance in the country that has spectacular misuse of guns in schools and post offices to name a few...

two points and then one o/t for the Bag:

1. Clearly this tragedy just goes to show that my take on controversial political issue X is right and yours is wrong. Everything will work out better if we just do things the way I say they should be done.

2. #1 is not a persuasive argument. Predictable, and frequently advanced, but not persuasive. There _WAS_ gun control in this case, and if it had worked, Cho would not have been able to buy guns or bring them to school with him. It didn't work. So, the "Let's pass more restrictive gun control laws" canard has already been trotted out... why, pray tell, should we expect that more restrictive law to function as it is designed?

The important point to grasp here is the one that keeps working for suicide bombers. If someone really wants to kill another person, and doesn't care whether or not they die themselves, there are a LOT of ways to accomplish murder. Guns are just efficient. As a poster points out above, knives work too. The complete lack of a need for an exit strategy really opens up the options. Japan's experience in banning guns is instructive: they have a ban on guns for citizens... and look how well that's been working out for them. What's that old chestnut? "When guns are outlawed..." (Yes, Japan's violent crime rates are in general much lower than the rates in the US and Europe. And yes, gun crimes are much less frequent than they are in the US. And yes, as an island, they are much better situated geopolitically to prevent large numbers of guns from crossing their borders than the US would ever be. The point is- guns are effectively banned there now, and people occasionally STILL get gunned down in the street like dogs. This wasn't some college student, it was the freaking mayor of Tokyo.)

3. You were looking for a photo of "the wall." I'm sure you've seen one or two by now, but this one seems to be missing something: no razor wire on the top, no guys with guns in sniper boxes, keeping an eye on the citizens. Oh well, I'm sure there's still time for us to do the job right. Once the wall is up, I bet we can find plenty of Israelis who are ready and willing to shoot Iraqis to come and staff it for us.

I don't get Tekel's post completely, but, well....

there may have been a campus wide ban on guns but the point is he did not have to go very far to get them, just off campus. Gun control in such a small area without any control in the surrounding area, and in the absence of appropriate enforcement of the laws that are in place, does not work.

Margaret,

No, I do not pack every day yet, but I would rather have the choice. And I think you would be awed to know how many people do. And they have every right to do so. You are right, college kids and their teachers *should not* need to go to class armed, but the evidence is starting to elude that they may need to. At least a well-trained instructor under arms. After all, the instructor is responsible for the classroom. What is wrong with preparing for the worst? The gun is not at fault in this murder, it is the shooter. And had it not been legal for him to get a gun (and I am not sure with his history that it was), he would have gotten one from a different source. Or he would have gotten a gas can and a match. Or he would have gotten throwing knives, or a baseball bat, or a lead pipe, or a well-trained aresenal of ninja monkey assassins. Point is, the method is not near as important as the end result. A murderer will murder, and a theif will steal. It is our right to defend ourselves, and you cannot take a knife to a gun fight. Of course, I imagine knives are not allowed on the campus as well.

I believe this kid is our version of a suicide bomber. In the Jerusalem (only one example of many), civilians must be very vigilant of their surroundings. Bus stations and pizza parlors have become battle grounds. Look at our situation. You have 32 innocent casualties and 1 attacker who at least will never kill again. How do you prepare for that? Saying you shouldn't have to pack when you go to school is not enough. Taking the guns out of the law-abiding citizens' hands is not enough. I also don't think we should post deputies or the national guard outside of every school. We don't have that type of funding, and I would rather send our funds to killing the bad guys overseas. (oops, didn't mean to go there...:)) But we need to prepare for the unthinkable, because the unthinkable has happened. My best solution is voluntarily arm the teachers. If an instructor desires, send them through training, and have them protect the classroom. 99% of the instructors will never have to deal with it. But the one time the situation arises, the teachers will be able to protect the classroom. I am also not against the students being allowed to carry. Again, in this situation, it would have saved lives.

And Tekel, as per your point about knives and Japam...the goal is not to end all murders because that is unrealistic, but to reduce them as much as possible. And if reduction is your goal, then gun control quantifiably works. So a person got murdered with a gun in Japan. The larger point, that they have a fraction of the gun crime of the U.S., is of course totally lost to you. And the hit on the mayor of Tokyo was probably carried out by organized crime, not comparable to a college kid picking up some Glocks and going bananas.

Yes, if someone really desires to kill then it is difficult to stop them. But we don't need to help them along and give them the means to rack up so many victims.

Like I said, pro-gunners have the most sophisticated propaganda of all time, but it's all lies.

I'm also in support of compulsory military/civil service in exchange for citizenship rights in the US. If you haven't served your country, you shouldn't have the right to vote or hold public office, period. It wouldn't have to be in the military- peace corps, americorps, Teach for America would all qualify.

The Texas Air National Guard would not.

Fran: "The bottom line is, the gun owning, right wing, conservative christian, people in this nation aren't the problem, they are what makes America great." [altho sans apostrophe]

Does/did not the BTK Killer fit that description too?

Please feel free to use The Google for 'BTK Killer' if he wasn't ever mentioned at service. I'd give you a link but I know how you people are about handlin' other's linkage.

Hue: No, he wouldn't fit that description. Who cares if he went to church? Shoving feathers up your butt won't make you a chicken, and going to church doesn't make one a Christian. As verplanck colvin rightly pointed out, punching a time card on Sunday Morning is not enough. It would be like saying you could get a masters by sitting in a lecture hall. There is a little more to it than that. And as Arnold has proven, being a Republican does not make one conservative. And gun owning without the rest of the station is just that: gun owning. could be a cop, could be manson. One is supposed to protect us, the other should be in prison for life. Or, it may be a gun owning, right wing, conservative Christian who feels the need for self-defense against the latter.

Oops...that was supposed to be, "gun owning without the rest of the statement..." guess I should proofread.

Joe, if you don't pack all the time, then your point is moot. You're not prepared for every possibility. You're not paranoid enough yet, man.

I wouldn't be awed by knowing how many people have a gun about their persons at all times, but I might be appalled. I wonder what it's like to live in such fear. I also believe people of this mentality are probably more dangerous than others, AND they carry guns--double whammy. Yikes.

You complain that pizza parlors and bus stations have become battlegrounds, but you think putting more guns in the hands of teenagers is the answer. Amazing. It boggles the mind. In Joe's world everyone will act reasonably, except for the very rare complete psychopath, and when said psychopath shows up, once every decade or so, he will be neatly shot down in his tracks.

And in the meantime, what of the armed professors in standoffs with pissed off students? Boyfriend-girlfriend disputes? Drunken shoot-outs at keggers? College students are not unknown to drink, you know. But heck, have at it! Bang! Bang! Bang!

Joe, you really have no idea how people actually behave, do you? I'm sorry, your nightmare vision of this country is not one I share. It disgusts me.

Gun control works, and people who argue as you do are extremely irresponsible. When somebody gets killed with a gun, you are partly the reason. Your harping on the self defense issue is just a feint, another part of the big lie. It isn't backed up by any data. When guns are fired at people, it's in self defense only a tiny fraction of the time. As for choice, neither you nor anybody else deserves a choice to carry around something hidden in your pants or coat pocket that can kill me with a flick of the finger. Yes, I said that. You don't deserve the choice. Get over it already.

tina: the hit on the mayor of Tokyo was probably carried out by organized crime, not comparable to a college kid picking up some Glocks

OK, that's a fair distinction. However, both were already against the applicable law. So, since Japan's gun control laws didn't prevent this murder, should they now take the guns away from their police and military? Should they make the penalties for gun ownership more severe?

I think we're quibbling about whether to focus on mitigating the mangitude of the harm, or preventing the harm at all. Maybe I'm being unreasonable.

Sorry to post and run, I have to go to class.

Since we cannot prevent the harm in every case, it makes sense to mitigate it. It's hard to see how the mayor's life could have been saved if more people in Japan had guns. That's how it is. Opportunities for self defense with guns even if you have them just don't always arise. A book was recently published in which a man witnessed a rape; the young woman carried a gun, and when she tried to get it out of her purse, her rapist took it and turned it on her. Similarly, I was mugged at knifepoint and having a gun would not have helped me, since I was approached and tackled from behind. These cases are the reality, not the la-la land where people always have the time and the presence of mind to act heroically. Gun advocates are struggling with a control issue not a crime issue. It's wishful thinking to believe we can make ourselves safe just by toting pistols around, and that is hard for some people to accept.

Joe,

Unfortunately for the evangelical movement, all you need to do is punch that Sunday time clock. I'll dredge up the wiki link if you'd like, but a core belief of evangelicals is that all you need to do go through "the process". No need to help the poor.

As for the self-defense thing, I don't buy it. I'd imagine that the shock of seeing someone kick in your classroom door and gun down 5+ people would paralyze you before you had a chance to retaliate. Then you're still subject to the stresses of the situation and your accuracy would decrease dramatically. If the person was mentally prepared enough for that contingency, I bet you he'd kill 5 innocent people who accidentally barged into the wrong classroom before he became a hero and shot the mass murderer.

Tina, you say:

Gun control in such a small area without any control in the surrounding area, and in the absence of appropriate enforcement of the laws that are in place, does not work.

As long as one locality sells guns legally, any American can get one. Anyone with sufficient will could go from, say their California home to the last place where guns could legally be sold, say Maine. The only solution, then, is a national ban on guns. And that is unacceptable (as well as completely unworkable, practically speaking).

tina: "Joe, if you don't pack all the time, then your point is moot. You're not prepared for every possibility."

I am prepared if a gun is not the solution to every problem. Vigilance is half the answer. A skill our nation had better learn quickly.

"You're not paranoid enough yet, man."

It is not paranoia if there is an attack to prepare for:

26 February 1993
20 March 1995
19 April 1995
25 June 1996
27 July 1996
20 April 1999
12 October 2000
11 September 2001
7 July 2005
16 April 2007

"I wonder what it's like to live in such fear."

Don't. I don't fear. When the ostrich pulls his head out, he realizes he just needed to open his eyes.

"putting more guns in the hands of teenagers is the answer."

Define teenager? Are you talking about a 13 year old? That is ridiculous. Are you talking about college kids who could very well go down to the recruiter and have a gun put in their hands? Looks like they are getting that taken care of on their own.

"It boggles the mind. In Joe's world everyone will act reasonably, except for the very rare complete psychopath, and when said psychopath shows up, once every decade or so, he will be neatly shot down in his tracks."

It is called citizenship. Been practiced by an awful lot of us as a part of daily life. I never said anything about 'neatly shot down in his tracks'. It is a simple concept called 'operational risk management'. Would i rather have 32 dead, or 5 dead + a psycho? I choose the latter. And I will always choose my life over the perps.

"And in the meantime, what of the armed professors in standoffs with pissed off students? Boyfriend-girlfriend disputes? Drunken shoot-outs at keggers? College students are not unknown to drink, you know. But heck, have at it! Bang! Bang! Bang!"

This is where training and common sense comes into the argument. Again, right to bear arms is significantly different than the condom box at the student center. But i don't think rational argument is your mean by the way you are choosing your words. typical from the left.

"Joe, you really have no idea how people actually behave, do you? I'm sorry, your nightmare vision of this country is not one I share. It disgusts me."

Actually, I interact with people every day. And where I have lived, most choose to carry. No drunken keg shoot outs or girl/boyfriend spats escalated to o.k. corral.


"When somebody gets killed with a gun, you are partly the reason."

Yes. Because I was there pulling the trigger. No wait, this is the argument to blame an inanimate object again. sorry.

"When guns are fired at people, it's in self defense only a tiny fraction of the time."

Perhaps this is because the majority of the gun crimes take place is where guns are not allowed. And the only people recognizing that law are the victims.

"As for choice, neither you nor anybody else deserves a choice to carry around something hidden in your pants or coat pocket that can kill me with a flick of the finger. Yes, I said that. You don't deserve the choice. Get over it already."

No. Liberals harp and harp about a doctor's right to pull a baby out of the womb, stab the baby in the skull with a pair of scissors, suck out the brain and collapse the head. And you expect me to give up my choice to defend myself and my family? No, I will not get over it. Keep fighting to stop me, and I will keep fighting to keep libs from murdering babies, as well as I will fight for my other rights. That is another constitutional right you will not take away from me. I will do so respectfully, as we all have the right to our opinion. I request you do the same.

hey joe, don't paint all us liberals with that brush you used for nanny-stater tina. For all I care, she can join the evangelical movement and make sure no one drinks, smokes, does drugs, have sex, shoots guns, plays video games, and anything else that is remotely dangerous or has a potential of being counter to society's norms as defined by those pack of boring, milquetoast suburbanites.

I think Joe is right on many counts. Lets take a look at another issue (briefly). Illegal Immigration. I'm not interested in a debate on this, it's the wrong forum, after all. The point I'm trying to make is that there are plenty of laws already on the books. There is no need for tougher laws, there is no need for new ones, or to investigate the effectiveness of old ones. The ones we have need to be enforced. Same goes with guns laws. We don't need any new ones, we don't need to spend countless hours investigating if they work or not, we don't need to dream up new ways to stop guns from getting into the wrong peoples hands. We need to enforce the gun laws we have and enforce them rigourously. The problem with liberals is they believe that the gov't can solve any problem if we (the American public) give them enough time and money. Frankly, my money is mine and I'm tired of giving it to the gov't who wastes it and uses it for purposes I don't like. I don't like giving for causes that I believe are wrong. The 2nd ammendment gives me the right to carry a weapon, it also protects my right to free speech, freedom of the press, my right to choose which church to attend (or not), and several others. If I feel my life is threatend, I should be able to protect it. With a gun, baseball bat, lead pipe, whatever. The probelm is that if I use the baseball bat and disable the perp for life, he now turns around and sues me and is set for the rest of his misreable life. So, I will choose a gun to end his life and save mine. Period, end of story.

Well, this is my third attempt to type this, and I keep getting it erased, due to computer issues. I am tired of typing the same thing over and over, so I will simply say to verplanck colvin: Please do not mistake the evangelical movement for Christianity. Not to say there are not Christians within the movement, but in order to be called Christian, it would need to align with the one they call Christ. If more of us would read His book, even those who choose not to follow, would know the difference between Christianity and today's popular opinion of Christianity. It is significantly different, and I assure you, punching cards do not fall into it. Think more along the lines of recipricating love from a Savior who sacrificed for me: A Christian. And asking Him to guide me as I walk through life.

I do have a solution. It's one that many people will not like (libs) because it involves more guns. For every lover of fantasy novels out there, you will know exaclty what I'm talking about. Paladins. Only with guns, not swords and no magic (unfortunately) and no magical steeds to carry us into battle.

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.

as the original intent was motivated by: (1) civilain defense against (tyrannical) political power; and, (2) superiority of diversified, citizen-soldiers' irregular Army vs. "Professional Soldier (class) Army," so obvious today, with the utterly incompetent, politically corrupt and morally bankrupt current U.S. Officer Corps...

...i cannot imagine (us) unilateral dis-armament now, in the face of (them) BushCo's creeping corporate 'Security State,' the NeoCon's global terror megalomania, and the Fundamentalist's Anti-Democracy Theocracic agenda.


imho the greatest threat we face is psych-meds; ie., being force-flatlined by the State :

=> a Fundamentalist, anti-Humanist dystopia, where "drug abuse" is not being dosed.


Virginia Tech wouldn't have happened, had Cho been (forcefully) medicated.”


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