Wouldn’t any decent person wish for a world without guns? In my view, only someone who doesn’t understand violence could wish for such a world. A world without guns is one in which the most aggressive men can do more or less anything they want. . . A world without guns, therefore, is one in which the advantages of youth, size, strength, aggression, and sheer numbers are almost always decisive. Who could be nostalgic for such a world?
I’m not normally a huge Twitter user. It has its uses, and I admire certain masters of the art, but I don’t have the always-on mentality to constantly stay in the stream saying witty things. For one, my job doesn’t allow me the luxury of carrying a cell phone (or even Internet access); for two, I don’t want to be always plugged in, always looking for the next clever thing to tweet.
But for a brief evening, I tried it out.
Yesterday I went on at some length about HB 1588. One of my (four?) readers commented that it will be DOA in the Senate; here’s hoping, though I can’t help but resent the idea it could even get out of the House.
And now for something completely different–The Washington State Firearms Freedom Act of 2013, HB 1371.
I was wondering how long it would take for the national stupidity to get to the state level.
NEW SECTION. Sec. 1. The legislature finds that there is broad consensus that certain people, such as felons, minors, and involuntarily committed persons, should not be eligible to possess firearms for public safety reasons. Background checks are an effective and easy mechanism to ensure that firearms are not sold to those who are prohibited from possessing them. However, because background check requirements apply only to transfers by licensed firearms dealers, many firearms are currently sold without a background check, allowing felons and other ineligible persons to gain access to them. The legislature intends by this act to strengthen our background check system by broadening the requirement for a background check to apply to all firearms sales in the state.
I’ve helpfully highlighted the stupid in red. The first statement is rubbish; the second is blithely asserted without any supporting evidence, mostly because there isn’t any.
So, yes, the AR15 is made to kill people, and there are some people who need killing, so says common law, codified law, and the Supreme @#$ing Court. Therefore, if you say, “The only purpose of a gun is to kill people,” you’re not entirely correct, but you are in fact making a statement that supports gun ownership. Thanks. We’re glad you’ve figured it out. One of the main purposes of guns is to kill people who need killing.
Michael Z. Williamson, on Who Really Needs An AR15?
Read the whole thing. I don’t have one, but I’d hoped to get one this year or perhaps next. It really is the modern equivalent of the revolution-era musket.
Still, if you will not fight for the right when you can easily win without bloodshed; if you will not fight when your victory will be sure and not too costly; you may come to the moment when you will have to fight with all the odds against you and only a precarious chance of survival. There may even be a worse case. You may have to fight when there is no hope of victory, because it is better to perish than to live as slaves.
Winston Churchill, The Second World War, Volume I : The Gathering Storm (1948) Chapter 19 (Prague, Albania, and the Polish Guarantee)
And because he’s so damned quotable:
Never give in — never, never, never, never, in nothing great or small, large or petty, never give in except to convictions of honour and good sense. Never yield to force; never yield to the apparently overwhelming might of the enemy.
Ibid, speech given at Harrow School, Harrow, England, October 29, 1941.
On the response side, there’s a lot that citizens could do. Many have suggested encouraging people who are licensed to carry guns to do so, and it’s certainly true that armed individuals working for El Al, rather than a law enforcement agency, stopped Mohammed Hadayet‘s Los Angeles International Airport shooting spree almost as soon as it started. Armed citizens, especially if trained in what to look for, could be a very valuable last line of defense against terrorism. In almost every instance of terrorism, the true first responders will be the people already on the scene. And, as Flight 93‘s passengers reminded us, that response can be decisive.
Glenn Reynolds, “American Dunkirk” (13 November 2002).
[In case you’re not familiar with the reference of the title, see this article about the spontaneous volunteer evacuation in the aftermath of 9/11.]