Every time there’s another senseless act of mass-murder by a gunman with easy access to guns and ammo and a heaping helping of aggrieved entitlement, that’s when everyone in the political sphere suddenly remembers that mental health issues exist. Not that they often even intersect — just the mere fact that the guy (and it’s always a guy, and almost always white) killed a bunch of folks doesn’t actually say anything about their mental health. In fact, the Oregon shooter a few days ago passed a psych eval before his mass-murder. And yet everyone’s quick to say the problem here isn’t easy access to guns and ammo, but rather the murderer’s mental health.
John Oliver takes apart this situational and blatantly self-interested concern about mental health readily. Not that it’s hard, but nobody in the media is doing it, what with vested interests and an entire 33% of your country who thinks “a well regulated militia” means owning thirty guns in a misguided effort to try to take on the US government because you don’t like what some Republican has told you is going to happen to your gun rights.
Here’s an interesting little situation that’s come up recently. Apparently, a gun columnist by the name of Dick Metcalf questioned the wisdom of gun rights advocates demanding there be absolutely no limits to the “Right to Bear Arms” by arguing that a sixteen hour course for a concealed carry permit was reasonable. As a result, he was fired from his column with Guns And Ammo, and now his career of 40 years has evaporated.
Just days after the column appeared, Mr. Metcalf said, his editor called to tell him that two major gun manufacturers had said “in no uncertain terms” that they could no longer do business with InterMedia Outdoors, the company that publishes Guns & Ammo and co-produces his TV show, if he continued to work there. He was let go immediately.
“I’ve been vanished, disappeared,” Mr. Metcalf, 67, said in an interview last month on his gun range here, about 100 miles north of St. Louis, surrounded by snow-blanketed fields and towering grain elevators. “Now you see him. Now you don’t.”
This is almost identical to what happened with that Duck Dynasty jackass being suspended by A&E for saying stupid homophobic bullshit, only that story had a “happy” ending — right-wingers successfully rallied to demand that A&E reinstate Duck Dynasty because HOW DARE THEY TAKE AWAY HIS FREEDOM OF SPEECH by… exercising their own freedom to choose what gets aired on their network. And A&E caved, mistaking the conservative outcry for something actually approaching a morally justifiable standpoint.
I anxiously await the protest by Sarah Palin, Brian Brown, and the whole host of conservative loonies to demand that Metcalf’s column be reinstated. I further await the people running interference on the Duck Dynasty issue as being a matter of freedom of speech to say something, anything, about this guy’s column about guns.
I don’t know if you’ve seen these, but they’re setting off all sorts of wishful-thinking and conspiracy theory alarms on my bullshit detection kit. Four days after being declared not guilty of murder after having shot and killed 17-year-old unarmed black teenager Trayvon Martin, George Zimmerman quickly reentered the news. CNN reports that he “stepped out of seclusion” and, happening upon the scene of a family of four having overturned their car, helped pull them from the car before it erupted into flames.
By the time a deputy arrived, Zimmerman and another man already had helped the two adults and two children out of the vehicle, Smith said.
Zimmerman did not witness the crash, and he left after making contact with the deputy, Smith said. No injuries were reported in the crash.
Only there are some minor inconsistencies with the report: that Zimmerman didn’t mention the rescue to his lawyer when they next saw one another; that the family didn’t mention a crash on social media; that the first officer on the scene was a self-described “friend” of Zimmerman even before the verdict.
Continue reading “Conspiracy theories about Zimmerman's car crash rescue”
So there’s apparently a “fourth-dimensional”, “massively single-player” game called The Best Amendment, which throws Wayne LaPierre’s words right back at him, and at you, the player. Remember when he said “the only thing that stops a bad guy with a gun is a good guy with a gun”? This game puts that axiom to the test.
The object of the game is to collect little stars. You need so many per play-through to pass to the next level. Every time you pass to the next level, you are then competing against your past selves. You’re armed with one of five weapons — a hand gun, an automatic rifle, a shotgun, grenades, or a rocket launcher — and you have to kill anyone who’s collected a past star to get the required number of stars. And you have to watch out for your past selves’ shots, because they’ll kill you.
The more pacifist you are, the easier the game is. But without actually murdering any of the past selves, it’s impossible to advance. Funny that good and bad are not a black and white dichotomy in the real world. Since there is no objective morality, what you end up with is a mosh pit of people who think that they’re the good guys, firing guns at one another.
Hat tip to CA7746 for mentioning this, which otherwise would have entirely slipped by my radar. Pay what you want for it, there’s a Windows and Mac client, as well as a Flash version that will work on any platform supporting Flash.
This is a powerful short ad by Moms Demand Action. It asks a question I’ve asked a number of times already, but the only answers I’ve ever gotten involve so much fetishizing of guns and so much misinterpretation of the Second Amendment that if there was a legitimate argument in amongst the dross, I certainly missed it.
I’m going to rip off John Oliver a little bit here, by mentioning the fact that every time there’s a failed terrorism attempt of any sort, the security theatre ratchets up. Someone tries to smuggle in a shoe bomb, we all have to take off our shoes. Someone figures out that you can take a couple of liquids into a plane and mix them there to make a bomb, then you’re not allowed to take any liquids through security. All it takes is one person failing at doing damage to a plane, and you’re willing to forego any and all vestige of personal liberty for some false sense of security.
But one shooting after another — 3300+ since Newtown, in fact — and the media squashes any discussion of guns, blustering and projecting in whatever ways they can, misdirecting people’s rage onto video games and pharmaceuticals and anything but those things that you hold in your hand and point at a person and pull a trigger to put a hole in them at range.
Via The Atlantic Wire, this graph shows a clear correlation between gun violence and video game spending per capita…
…oh wait, no, it doesn’t.
Like, at all.
Your move, gun apologists.
A few weeks ago, before things got super-busy in my life, I was trolling about the White House petitions website and I found a petition that sorta bugged me. I left it in a tab for me to revisit as soon as I had time. As I was distracted with other things, I’d flip past the tab, get just that little bit more irritated, but still without enough time to do anything about it, and would move on with whatever I was doing that was more pressing. Now that I have a bit more breathing space between other duties, I should finally get this off my plate.
This petition asks for all civillian firearms to be mandated, by law, to be pink.
Regulation of specific types of guns may be well- intentioned, but until we confront the underlying psychological and social issues that feed the violence, these laws will have little effect. The fact is that in America, guns have become potent cultural symbols of machismo, masculinity and power.
Therefore, we propose that every civilian firearm in America be painted a shade of bright pink over no less than 90% of their exposed surface areas.
We believe this simple act will fundamentally change the dynamic of American gun culture while still passing Constitutional scrutiny. All will be free to legally buy guns-just so long as they are Fabulous.
Continue reading “Gun control, pinkification, and splash damage”
When even FOX News personalities scoff at the headlines they’re forced to read, you know there’s a problem with the network. At least pretty well everyone present guffawed heartily at the assertion that the Constitutional Law Professor-In-Chief doesn’t believe in the Constitution. I’m guessing because there’s an amendment to the constitution that forbids sensible regulations applied to your civilian militia? As though the 2nd Amendment was so hard to interpret!
And that’s not to mention the mockery of Te’o at the beginning of the clip.
Via Media Matters.
In a move I can only characterize as rank unvarnished hypocrisy, the National Rifle Association has just released a gun range game where you can shoot at “coffin-shaped” human silhouette targets. The ink isn’t even dry on reporters’ dutiful relaying of the NRA’s last attempt to blame video games for the Sandy Hook shooting, and the game-burning fires are barely quenched, and there they are, releasing a video game of their very own!
Continue reading “NRA's scapegoating tactics: an attempt to clear the deck for THEIR video game?”
Alex Jones’ unhinged rant on Piers Morgan’s show, where the interviewer got maybe one question answered out of the three he managed to ask, tells me why I got a comment the other day demanding the rounding up and burning of antidepressants. There is now apparently a parallel narrative forming where antidepressants are responsible for mental instability, and that, combined with video games, induces people to obtain high-volume weaponry and commit mass-murder. And any attempt at taking away guns, instead of video games and antidepressants, is an attempt at creating a totalitarian single world government.
“You’re a hatchet man of the New World Order.” Someone please tell me how many guns Alex Jones owns. Actually, no, don’t. I’d be terribly frightened to know.
Continue reading “Alex Jones rants about a NWO trying to take away his guns”