Thursday, August 30, 2012

Crazy about Guns

When television news announced the recent shooting near the Empire State Building in New York I was waiting for a mechanic to change the oil in beautiful wife Sandy’s car. Several others were in the car dealer’s lounge.

A young man wearing a Notre Dame sweatshirt briefly glanced at the TV, and then continued working at his laptop computer. A 30-something woman and a man in the same age bracket, who had been watching TV intently before the announcement, continued to do so.  No one spoke. I went back to reading my book.

A man in his 60s or early 70s wearing overalls, a flannel shirt, and boots entered as the news flash was ending.  “Another shooting?” he asked.

“Yes,” I said. “An unhappy former employee of a New York firm opened fire (we learned later that the shooter killed his target and the other damage was done by police bullets) near the Empire State Building. A half-dozen or so were wounded. The gunman’s target and the shooter were killed.”

“The liberals are behind these shootings,” the new arrival said. “They’re trying to whip people up so they can take our guns away.”

“Do you really believe that?” I asked. 

“Yes, of course I do,” he said.

The small group in the waiting room lapsed back into silence.

Who is crazier, the shooters or deluded people who believe ridiculous conspiracy theories?


JHawk23 said...

Sad, but true, there are an awful lot of paranoiacs running around out there. I've run into folks who believe that GPS systems are put in cars so the government can spy on us.

Paranoia, as well as the kinds of killer attacks we have seen so many of lately, seem to blossom especially when the economy is bad.

Unfortunately it seems both our polarized political situation, and the ability of the internet to propagate conspiracy theories so much more rapidly and broadly, both exacerbate the problem even more.

schmidleysscribblins, said...

Interestingly, neither of the candidates for President has weighed in on this topic.

The second ammendment is here to stay, but I like Danial Patrick Monihan's idea. Let's tax the hell our of ammunition. This would at least add to the government coffers.

As for conspiracy theory, all I hear around here everytime one of these shootings occurs is that some crazy right-winger must be the culprit.

I find this strange because it was the left via the Panthers and Weathermen who did all the shooting in the 60s and 70s, and it was AG Janet Reno and her deputy Eric Holder who were behind the Waco and Ruby Ridge fiascos.

Crazy people should not be issued guns period. We have laws on the books about background checks. All we need is a little law enforcement I think. By that I mean crack down on the gun dealers.

PS your comment section is hard to crack. I had to enter the "prove you are not a robot" information 6 times.

Tom Sightings said...

But here's the difference (in my opinion anyway). In America we're allowed to believe in whatever crazy theory we want, and a lot of people do believe in a lot of different crazy theories.

We're just not allowed to murder people, whether they believe in a different crazy theory than we do, or in this case (I believe) because they fired us from a job.

To enforce that second point, my vote goes toward more gun control. Not to take away guns from hunters and collectors; but to inhibit the crazy people from killing innocent victims, from James Brady to Gabrielle Giffords to, literally, hundreds of other people.

Dick Klade said...

Dianne--Yep, many gun controls arrived in response to fears about the black revolutionaries in the late 60s and 70s. One interesting thing about that was the National Rifle Association, now opposed to controls of any kind, was a strong advocate for controls.

I've seen liberals claiming that all the shooters are righties. That's not true. There have been some of both political stripes.

I'm trying to figure out how to make it easier to comment.

Kay said...

There is a special place in Hell reserved for gun lobbyists.