I Wish There Were No Guns… But Since There Are, I Hope You Have One

The race is on, with a big thrust from the presidential rostrum, to make political hay out of twenty murdered children—who all might have been saved by one gun under the counter.

I will abstain from writing that the Democrat Party’s war on children has claimed twenty more young lives just before Christmas.  That would be going several steps too far.  Though babies continue to be surgically de-brained as they struggle to exit the birth canal thanks to the current regime’s policies, and though the number of toddlers in Pakistan taken out by the Czar’s drone attacks has climbed to roughly ten times as many as were slaughtered in Newtown, Connecticut, on December 14, nobody deserves to be directly blamed for Friday’s massacre other than the shooter himself.

But the party of avoid-birth-at-all-costs has not extended the same basic courtesy to those of us who value the Second Amendment.  If anything, we are more responsible than a twisted matricide with borderline autism named Lanza.  Perhaps if there had been no guns on the premises, he would merely have strangled his mother and then run to her place of employ with a butcher’s knife.  That he had more deadly force at his disposal is all our fault.  Constitutionalists are child-killers in the wonderful world of Costas.

May I say candidly that there is some small truth to this plangency?  If the Lanza household had possessed no firearms, no kindergarteners would have been shot.  And if all jetliners had merely taxied to their destinations on 9/11, the World Trade Towers would still be standing.

All things considered, I wish there were no guns in the world.  I rather wish, too, that the internal combustion engine had never been invented.  And I particularly wish that stupidity could be cured for life by the ingestion of a small, tasty pill.

We live in a wicked world.  The socially antinomian tendencies of liberal policies have made it even more so.  The fragmentation of families, the promotion of hallucinogens, the proliferation of obscenely violent “entertainment”, the celebration of nihilism implicit in hedonistic sexual mores, the concentration of incompatible cultures into once-quiet communities, the subversion of productive effort through massive public subsidizing of private lives… any one of these factors might suffice to generate scores of homicidal lunatics.  All have defined the policies of the American Left for several decades now.  The gun is the formal cause of any shooting—but of no shooting is it ever the efficient cause.  What’s making our society sick isn’t manufactured by Smith & Wesson.

This is the general point that must be made.  Now to specifics, insofar as they are available at 4:30 on the morning of December 15 (as I sit writing, having slept scarcely a wink).  The glass entry to the elementary school was apparently shattered, and reporters feign mystification over that significant fact.  My son used to attend such an elementary school, where all arrivals had to be buzzed in unless they had a pass-key and, in suspicious cases, could be ogled through a see-through door.  But glass is glass.  The crazed kid probably didn’t even bother to use his murdered dam’s pass-card or to attempt bluffing his way in.  I figure he smashed the door in with the butt of his rifle.  It’s bound to have been satisfying to him, given his mood.

Then he shot everybody who happened to be gawking around the front desk.  Like fish in a barrel.

Now, in this wicked and dangerous world unleashed upon our children by liberal self-absorption and fantasism, one would be well advised to keep that wicked article, a loaded gun, just behind the counter if six hundred little tikes were in one’s charge.  Twenty more children would be opening presents on Christmas day if the supervisors of Sandy Hook Elementary had thought beforehand to procure instant and sure protection against deadly force—if even one of them had been able to reach for a piece while the glass shards were falling.

What “enlightened” states like Connecticut have created, instead, is a fool’s paradise abundant in “gun-free zones” that might as well be decked with signs reading, “Enter here all you illegally armed who desire to kidnap, plunder, rape, and wreak havoc.”  A 911 call is supposed to be the solution to every emergency.  With the sketchiest of information, cops are supposed to descend from the other part of town in effective numbers, go instantly to the trouble spot, and diffuse the tension.  Unless and until we can somehow rig our secure spaces with time warps as well as buzzers and cameras, the predator’s victims will have lain cold an hour before any cop finds them.  The 911 approach reduces our children to “evidence” before they make the one-way trip to the morgue; the gun-under-the-counter approach sends them all safely home that evening by the back door, so that they don’t step on any glass.

I hate it that guns exist at all—but I like it that I own a gun, since they exist.  I would rather have that evil snake poised to strike in a desk drawer than caress my child’s casket with virtuous fingers unknown to gunpowder.

Law-abiding people now need guns more than ever.  Parents need guns more than ever—teachers need guns and training in how to use them, now more than ever.  Which would you rather have: a state with Connecticut’s stringent gun laws greatly magnified, where you may be assured that anyone carrying a firearm is definitely up to no good… or a gun in your hand when that shady character kicks in the door of your child’s school?  Which do you think twenty sets of parents in Newtown would have preferred yesterday?

I work at a state university.  Like all such places, its hallowed halls of ivy are a “gun-free zone”.  That means that anyone who enters our buildings packing a piece (and there are no scanners or detectors anywhere) is already breaking the law, and may be presumed not to care about laws.  He may be presumed dangerous.  It also means that none of us nomophiles has anything more than, perhaps, a few karate moves to prevent another Virginia Tech from happening.  Oh, I have seen the occasional security guard… but I have never seen a single one that I couldn’t beat in a fifty-yard dash, even in my advanced years and with my bone spurs.  I shouldn’t like to think that the lives of dozens of my students would depend upon one of these Rambos finding his way to the right corridor on the right floor of the right building in a timely fashion and then having the courage to rush the shooter hell-for-leather (and the luck to bring him down).  No offense to these hard-working, highly qualified professionals… but I’d rather have my Ruger.

Every one of our classrooms sports color-coded instructions about what to do in case of tornado, fire, power outage, live shooter (the dead ones present fewer problems)… and the instructions for handling the shooter, you ask?  Lock doors, turn out lights, crawl under desks.  This doesn’t do much to help the dozens of teenagers who may be trapped outside in the halls and foyers: in fact, it leaves them sitting ducks.  But… well, in the progressive cosmos, we worry primarily about preserving our own pelt for more weed and good sex, and we never, ever taint our fingertips through contact with any sort of deadly weapon.  There are people who do that—functionaries whom we pay with taxes, and who have received adequate training in the prescribed classes.  They’re just waiting at the 911 switchboard to pop magically out of the woodwork and help us.  Meanwhile, we close our eyes, cover our ears, and hunker down.

I keep an old baseball on my desk for the day when an unhinged student drifts through my office door and sticks his hand suspiciously in his backpack.  That’s my first line of defense.  Maybe, if I bean him between the eyes, I can extricate myself from my swivel-chair and be on him before his daze wears off.  Much better plan than having a gun handy—the thing might go off!

My sarcasm is drawing me very close to that which I initially declared I would not do: attribute these school massacres to another front of the Democrat Party’s war on children.  I must not allow myself to write, or even think, that Harry Reid, Nancy Pelosi, and Fearless Leader actually want schoolchildren to be gunned down.  No: they’re simply too stupid to give our children their best chance at survival.  And the “anti-stupid pill” hasn’t yet been cleared by the Food and Drug Administration.

Let me pose you this, in closing: why do so many of these massacres occur in schools?  I know of one that took place in a church (Wegdwood Baptist of Fort Worth, mere blocks from where I grew up), and the recent Clackamas, Oregon, incident happened in a mall’s food court.  Why are not malls the primary target?  In terms of bodies per square foot, they’re much more densely packed than school corridors.  Or why has there never been a shooting at a crowded concert (other than the gang-related variety) or in a jam-packed sports arena?

One reason, of course, is that the shooters are often themselves children, and the mayhem is somehow supposed to cleanse in blood the scenes of their deepest humiliation.  But another reason must surely be that the shooter wants easy victims.  Children can put up no defense.  A gunman at a crowded reception would quickly be overpowered, and quite possibly himself shot by some solid citizen with a permit to carry.  Gunmen know that children don’t pack guns, and they think they know (with good reason) that teachers are scared to death of firearms. 

Every school with a glass door and a buzzer in this nation might as well have a red bull’s eye painted on it.  As the Mexican way of life increasingly overtakes us, thanks to the Czar (and in Mexico, private ownership of guns is strictly illegal), we parents in the Southwest have to worry more and more about all-too-rational school-invaders taking children hostage for ransom.  Glass doors, buzzers, metal detectors, “gun-free zone” postings, and even the dreaded 911 number will not stop a bad guy—not all of them put together—as quickly and effectively as a bullet.  I wish it weren’t so: I wish we parents and teachers had the power of calling down Saint Pete in our defense at the snap of a finger. 

As we practice that, let’s be sure to ban all guns from our midst, by all means—especially where there are children.  As Democrats keep reminding us, the world is overpopulated, anyway.

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