Thoughts, essays, and writings on Liberty. Written by the heirs of Patrick Henry.

“You don't have to be straight to be in the military; you just have to be able to shoot straight.”     Barry Goldwater

April 17, 2007

It’s Not About The Guns

by Doug Mataconis

With not even twenty-four hours passed since the tragedy at Virginia Tech, and already the New York Times has taken the lead in turning it into a political issue:

Yesterday’s mass shooting at Virginia Tech — the worst in American history — is another horrifying reminder that some of the gravest dangers Americans face come from killers at home armed with guns that are frighteningly easy to obtain.

Not much is known about the gunman, who killed himself, or about his motives or how he got his weapons, so it is premature to draw too many lessons from this tragedy. But it seems a safe bet that in one way or another, this will turn out to be another instance in which an unstable or criminally minded individual had no trouble arming himself and harming defenseless people.

Here’s a memo to the editors at the Times. Guns have been widely available for a long time. Fifty years ago, they were more widely available than they are now and gun control laws were unheard of. And yet things like this did not happen, at least not as frequently as they seem to now.

This isn’t about the guns, it’s about people. It’s about the failure of law enforcement to protect citizens. And it’s about laws that prevent people from even having the opportunity to defend themselves. And, most importantly, it’s about one man who was on a mission to kill. Gun control laws won’t stop a person like that, as events in Europe have confirmed more than once.

No, this isn’t about the guns at all.

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9 Comments

  1. And of course, if this had been Republicans pushing for some violations of our civil liberties, you all would have led off with that fact as the Headline in the story.

    As it is, not a single mention in your entire article that this is being proposed by the DEMOCRAT-SUPPORTING NY Times, and Liberals.

    I guess here at Liberty Papers only partisan affliation is identified when it’s a chance to bash Republicans. And if Rudy Giuliani has anything to do with it, it’s a double whammy.

    Comment by Eric Dondero — April 17, 2007 @ 7:16 am
  2. And Eric,

    Quick question, which political party, holding both a majority in both houses of Congress and in the presidency, in the wake of 9/11 chose to continue victim disarmament on aircraft?

    Hmmm?

    Which political party was dominating in government when it was decided that, in the face of what you call the greatest threat to our nation in its history, decided that a citizen of the United States should not be permitted to defend himself in the skies?

    Which political party?

    Hmm?

    Comment by tarran — April 17, 2007 @ 7:30 am
  3. So guns will defend democracy?

    Really?

    Didn’t see anyone with a gun attempt to stop Czar Bush. Perhaps you should rethink this outstanding concept?

    No, you’re right: Too hard.

    Oh well, so much for logic then…

    Comment by Reg Grundie — April 17, 2007 @ 8:35 am
  4. Actually, while people have not risen up against Bush, they have stopped tyranny, even at the National level within living memory through threats of armed resistance.

    The case that immediately leaps to mind was the role they played in lifting agricultural price controls in the U.S. in the late 1940′s.

    Essentially, the price caps on meat meant that nobody was selling meat on the market. Truman had his staff plan an operation by the National Guard (in Michigan I believe) to sweep through farms confiscating livestock.

    It was the realization that the soldiers would face armed resistance from farmers, and would have to massacre them that caused him to give up the plan, and lift the price controls. In contrast, England kept war-time rationing in place for nearly a decade afterwards.

    Yes, most of my fellow countrymen are quite passive under the Bush regime. Frighteningly so. however, this mindset is the product of nearly a century of propaganda that seeks to replace self-reliance with submission to government. It is not an argument to further disarm the population, but rather an argument against the Prussian system of state schooling which dominates the world today.

    Comment by tarran — April 17, 2007 @ 8:50 am
  5. What a load of C&@p!

    You need to get out from in front of your TV’s and your PC’s. Get out on the streets and scream blue bloody murder. Not mumble about obscure (1940′s fer god’s sake!!) demo’s!

    I’ll make this nice and simple. Stop allowing your kids to kill each other by allowing (pretty much unlimited) access to guns. Yup, guns kill.

    How many people have been killed in debates?

    *sigh*

    Comment by Reg Grundie — April 17, 2007 @ 8:58 am
  6. Reg,

    I’m sorry, but I have to ask you to explain what you mean; Try as I might, I can’t figure out your argument.

    Are you asserting that since we are not rising up to shoot George Bush, we should be disarmed? If I were to run around screaming bloody murder, they’d toss me in the loony bin. If were to try to initiate an armed uprising against the United States government, I would be killed, and would hand the government yet another propaganda victory in its campaign to equate non-government-official-gun-owner with dangerous-lunatic in the eyes of the general public.

    As to your comments about teaching children not to shoot each other, I would agree. In fact, both my two year old and 6 year old know never to point a weapon at anyone, even a toy gun.

    I’m planning on getting the 6 year old a BB rifle in a few months. This will be his first weapon that fires a projectile, and he will be learning much more about gun safety.

    Comment by tarran — April 17, 2007 @ 9:24 am
  7. Reg,

    The public isn’t fighting against Bush because he is taking away liberties. Rather, those that watch the news hate Bush simply because they hate him; no one would have a problem if it were a person named Clinton taking away liberties. Please keep that in mind.

    Comment by Trumpetbob15 — April 17, 2007 @ 9:48 am
  8. Mr Trumpetbob,

    I disagree.

    I for one would be just as strenously objecting if Clinton was heading the illiberal things.

    Granted, Bill Clinton’s oratory would probably ruffle fewer feathers (although his wife, thankfully lacks her husband’s skill), but there would still be opposition.

    Comment by tarran — April 17, 2007 @ 10:01 am
  9. tarran,

    Sorry, but I didn’t make myself clear. I was not referring to people on this blog, else it wouldn’t exist. I was merely pointing out that those in the media who complain about Bush focus on him rather than on his actions, and that they would be happy with the Clinton’s acting the same way.

    On that note, however, after re-reading Reg’s comment, there were some people with guns who tried to ignore Clinton’s policies at Waco. The government quickly overpowered them. Maybe it has been too long, and I might be too young to remember right afterwards, but I seem to recall seeing the same gun rights advocates out in force advocating with Bill Clinton, rather than against his administration’s actions.

    Perhaps some day a debate will be enough. Then again, this country wasn’t founded on a debate alone so it would be unwise to assume a different fate in the future. It is important that this site exists to continue to illuminate exactly what the media won’t show so that we all can know exactly what is going on and then can fight accordingly.

    Comment by Trumpetbob15 — April 17, 2007 @ 11:16 am

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