The Best Argument for Gun Control Comes From Gunloons

I have been saying this for years. A few years back, for example, the NRA and the gunloons on the far right were trying to make a case for “open carry” everywhere. You’ll remember this, if you remember the spectacle of moronic rednecks nonsense by carrying their AR-15s and other military weapons in places where families shop, like Target, Subway (because nothing says “family lunch” like assholes carrying AR-15s within three feet of your kids. No one makes a better case for gun control than the average gunloon.

Rednecks and guns: What can go wrong?

Earlier this year, some 19-year-old asshole shot up a school with a fully accessorized AR-15 that he should have never been allowed to buy. That was just over six months ago, and the “usual suspects,” meaning NRA loyalists and the people who place guns above God in their lives, have actually spent more time attacking the surviving students at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida than doing anything to actually protect their so-called rights. Some have even taken to calling Cameron Kasky, David Hogg and other students “bullies” because they have dared suggest that no civilian needs a gun capable of firing 45 rounds per minute. They seem to have no clue that the greatest danger to their right to bear arms comes from doing nothing and encouraging a stronger response to gun violence. Instead, they value their short-term ownership of military assault weapons over the lives of children. 

The gunloon class truly believe they’re making a case against any sort of gun control with their petulance, and their obstinate attempt to force everyone else in the country to accept their absolutely fictional and baseless interpretation of the Second Amendment. Of course, as is the case with everything they do, they’re wrong. In fact, they’re making a better case for gun control than any non-gun person could ever make.

Back when “good old boys” were gathering together to show everyone how “brave” they were by carrying guns in peaceful places where there were plenty of children and there were no threats present, they were just being stupid. I will never forget the images of Cletus, Bubba and Homer, proudly brandishing their guns at the local Target, is if the gun was a symbol of their manhood, rather than a replacement. I know their fevered brains, such as they were, told them they were “reinforcing gun rights,” but what they actually did was to make everyone fear them and realize there is no place they belong. I also remember an iconic photo, in which some asshole with an assault rifle was standing in line as a Subway sandwich shop, with a bunch of kids around, with an assault weapon around his neck, as if he wasn’t scaring anyone.

Whereas these gunloons think they were making guns seem less scary, the fact is, they were actually reinforcing the notion that anyone who wants one can obviously buy a gun, and wield it anywhere they want. That’s not a positive development at all. When I see some asshole walking through the local supermarket, I don’t feel safer; I’m hoping to fuck he’s not some psycho who plans to shoot others. I am also worried that someone might come in with a weapon and actually want to do harm and Cletus will shoot the wrong person. Seriously, are we just supposed to hope these guys know what the fuck they’re doing? How is that making anyone safer?

Worse, all these idiots claim they’re protected by the Constitution when they’re not. That concept is absurd. No one has a right to carry a gun on private property, for one thing. That’s up to the owners.  If the executives at Target decide that pissing off gunloons is worth the effort, they can toss these idiots and ban them for life. They can also have them arrested. And if I were a Target executive, I’d have to ask how many people are refusing to shop in their stores because they see crazy-looking goobers with guns running around on their property and scaring the kids. And really, if you have to carry an AR-15 into a Subway to get a shitty sandwich, your level of paranoia is high enough to warrant counseling.

Right now, because Republicans have been running the show for too long, anyone could take a loaded AR-15 into a Target store. And until they shoot someone, here is no way to tell whether they are good or bad, and they could open fire without warning. At some point, someone will walk into a retail store that allows this sort of silliness and kill people. And there will be nothing police or store security can do to stop them. 

Yeah, I said it; a lack of gun control is the main reason most business owners ban guns from their premises, and it’s why all businesses should do so. There is currently no possible way to know who is carrying a gun into your establishment, and anything could happen.

On the other hand (and gunloons really need to pay attention here), if all guns were registered and all gun owners/carriers were licensed, certified and background checked on a regular basis, it’s possible that all anyone – whether it’s a police officer or a store security guard – would have to do is scan a person’s identification to have at least a reasonable belief that the person toting the gun is a law-abiding gun owner, rather than a troublemaker.

And that is why we need comprehensive gun control. We need to be able to tell good guys from bad guys. For too long, gunloons have derived benefit from the country being run by a Republican Party with neither courage or conviction stand by and watch the carnage. We, as voters, have to change the dynamic. No more Republicans and no more kowtowing to the NRA vision of the Second Amendment, in which any restriction on gun ownership is somehow a violation of their rights. That’s insane and we can no longer afford insane when it comes to guns.  No other country in the world loses as many of its citizens via gunfire. It’s time this all stopped. 

Also published on Medium.

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