Ultimately, it doesn’t matter when the “right” time to delve into so-called “gun control” has arrived. Once the smoke clears, we all step back into the rhetorical ring for another round of debate about what liberals call “gun violence” and conservatives call either “crime” or the lyrics to a rap album.
Of course, the actual debate takes a moment to get under way. First, the media have to descend on the bereaved and gorge themselves on misery like buzzards feasting on roadkill. In the Newtown, Conn., nightmare, ABC News editorial producer Nadine Shubailat began stalking victims’ families and friends on Twitter, begging for face time, until outraged respondents buried her Twitter feed in an avalanche of spam. Meanwhile, the Democrats had to take a moment to adhere to Rahm Emanuel’s famous adage: “You never want a serious crisis to go to waste.” Barack Obama’s creepy little pet, David Axelrod, even tried hyping Obama’s gun-control speech (which was ostensibly supposed to comfort the Nation) to direct people to donate to Obama’s 2012 Presidential campaign. Nothing says “we care” like exploiting dead children to grub for cash for an electoral effort that ended six weeks ago.
Among the citizenry, emotions run high, often obfuscating reason. Some proffer laughable conspiracy theories, my favorite involving both the Aurora theater shooter and the Newtown murderer being stooges for a secret gun-lobby conspiracy trying to create an artificial spike in prices. Others try to resurrect the ridiculous talking point about the 2nd Amendment referring only to flintlock muskets and blunderbusses. They blissfully ignore that abortion is now Constitutionally protected.
And we must not forget magazine capacity. Anti-2nd Amendment zealots suggest that no one needs high-capacity magazines. But Connecticut already bars the sale thereof. In fact, Connecticut is a liberal’s paradise regarding gun laws. Capacity makes no real difference. A determined shooter with even moderate training can cycle through 10- or even 5-round magazines in rapid succession. When the shooter is spurred on by the voices in his head and the victims are 5- and 6-year-olds, he doesn’t even have to be all that proficient. Hell, terrorist Timothy McVeigh was highly proficient with firearms — as an Army veteran, he was probably better with an M4 than Adam Lanza ever hoped to be — and he didn’t need a firearm at all. In China, some hopped-up lunatic went after a couple dozen schoolchildren with a knife about 18 hours before Lanza proceeded with his grisly plan. The Chinese, who have gun control to quail the hearts of even the Brady Campaign, have seen a number of such attacks in just the past few years.
Still others took advantage of the situation to press an assault against the National Rifle Association. Twitter was set ablaze by concerned liberals issuing death threats to not only the group’s members, but their children as well.
Liberals are so opposed to violence that they’re positively homicidal over it.
Gun control is really people control. And people can be controlled a lot more simply than an ill-advised frontal assault on the Bill of Rights. When I first offered my curriculum vitae to Bob Livingston, I remarked that gun control requires nothing more than common sense: You don’t allow criminals, illegal aliens or the guy down the street with a tinfoil hat access to firearms. Imposing draconian measures on the only part of the populace likely to abide by them merely tilts the field in favor of the criminal element. For those who remain unconvinced, take a look at Chicago, Detroit and Washington, D.C. (I suggest you do so from inside a tank.)
So-called “assault rifles,” high-capacity magazines, the NRA and one or two really intricate conspiracy theories might qualify as meaningful debate among liberal audiences who are as receptive to dissent as a Third World dictator, but they aren’t really the topics we ought to be discussing in the wake of Sandy Hook or any significant tragedy. From Newtown to Oklahoma City to China, the problem is on full display; and that problem isn’t guns.
Gun-grabbers claim they want to have a meaningful discussion about societal violence. I’m fine with that. Let me know when they’re ready to start.