I Feel Threatened (Part 2)
7 April 2015
Viagra for Bullies
J. S. Chavez
Let’s talk about the NRA, an organization of real men, though many of them appear to be craven cowards. How could they be anything else? Most of them live in neighborhoods where, like Oscar Pistorius (I Feel Threatened Part 1), the likelihood of their lives being threatened is miniscule. Way more likely that they will die in a traffic accident or from heart disease or at the hands of a member of their own households who gets his/her hands on an unsecured firearm. Look it up.
This is a favorite bumper sticker/t-shirt theme among the 2nd Amendment set.
I wonder where a reasonable person fits into this false dichotomy. For the NRA it appears that you are either predator or prey. I don’t know about you but…
I Feel Threatened. And it’s time we Stand Our Ground.
Gun owners strike me as a particularly insecure lot. Unable to reasonably assess a threat they see every situation as threatening. And, tending toward cowardice, they are impotent to deal with these perceived threats unless they have at the ready a means of exercising deadly force. And it emboldens them—as it did Zimmerman, Dunn, and Reeves.
Nobody picks a fight with someone he isn’t sure he can beat.
Bullies, for that is all that killers are, are nothing unless they have the advantage of force. Is there any question of what these men would have done had they not had deadly force at the ready? Does anyone believe that these men felt so cornered that they would have fought back with their bare hands, their fingernails even, because the situation was that dire? Far from it.
Not only did these killers fail to make an effort to mitigate the situations in which they found themselves, each man actually escalated the situation—each with the perfect knowledge of the excessive force he had at the ready. Is this not premeditation? “I don’t have to back down from this punk because I know something that he doesn’t know.” Florida’s “Stand Your Ground” law relieves an individual who feels threatened of the obligation to retreat. Does it also relieve him of the responsibility of being controlled or reasonable? Is feeling annoyed, disrespected, uncomfortable, frustrated, impotent, the same as feeling threatened?
Just after the tragedy at Sandy Hook Elementary, where 20 school children lost their lives to a psychotic gunman, NRA executive vice president Wayne LaPierre declared that “the only thing that stops a bad guy with a gun is a good guy with a gun.” The NRA’s reponse to the Sandy Hook tragedy was to put armed personnel in all the schools. They blame video games, movies, the liberal media, and mental illness for gun deaths. (It certainly couldn’t have anything to do with the fact that there are 88 guns for every 100 Americans, right?)
They want a mental illness database. All mental health practitioners would be required to forward patient files to the “jack-booted government thugs” who conduct background checks for potential gun owners? No, that can’t be what they mean because the NRA is staunchly against strengthening background checks in any way.
Small wonder. Consider this statement made by Wayne LaPierre (interview on FOX news, July 2012) regarding a supposed UN treaty which would regulate the global arms trade and, according to LaPierre, “says to people in the United States, turn over your personal protection and your firearms to the government.” What? That sounds a bit delusional—and paranoid. Are you sure you want a mental illness database, Wayne? Really?
LaPierre has also famously said “by its lies and laws and lack of enforcement, government polices are getting us killed, and imprisoning us in a society of terrifying violence.” It would seem that everyone is to blame for gun violence except he people with the guns. But LaPierre seems to be asking law enforcement, “the government,” to step up and assume a stronger role in curbing gun violence. Is he advocating for a stronger police state? Isn’t the 2nd Amendment the NRA’s fortress of solitude, so to speak? Isn’t the main point of owning personal firearms supposed to be as a protection against an overzealous, overbearing, overreaching, over-muscled police state?
The NRA can’t have it both ways. They can’t claim that citizens need free access to assault rifles and huge magazines as protection against the excesses of the state and then turn around and blame the government for the results of citizens exercising that free access. Granted, Wayne LaPierre is a lousy spokesman but, it’s difficult to see how the most articulate debater could spin the nonsensical arguments the NRA promotes as logic.
What are these NRA people are so frightened of?
Just how terrifyingly violent is the life of the average NRA member, because I suspect that the lives of the NRA elite, the ones we always hear from, are quite comfortable indeed. They say they’re not afraid-just prepared. And men who take Viagra don’t actually have erectile disfunction? They’re just prepared?
To be fair, a large majority of NRA rank and file members say they would support more stringent background checks. Why is it, then, that those who govern the organization are so far out of step with their members? As always, follow the money.
The NRA receives many millions of dollars every year in corporate donations and a lot of that money comes from gun makers. Also, the governing body of the NRA operates very much like the Central Politburo of the Communist Party of China; both are a one party system. The committee decides who runs so it’s no surprise when one of their own wins. As far as the NRA elite 1% are concerned, I guess the 2nd Amendment trumps the 1st Amendment.