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Hullabaloo


Friday, December 21, 2012

 
Free to live in a totalitarian society

by digby

Contrary to popular perception, I've been around guns in my life (although, interestingly, not at home with my very conservative military father, who didn't hunt and had no guns in his house.)I lived in Alaska for many years and knew a ton of people who had guns. I can't imagine killing anything and I'm not interested in target games, (not even darts) so it never interested me personally. But I've known plenty of people who are responsible, level headed and sane who do have them. Having said that, the arguments I've had over the years on the topic has brought home the fact that despite their freedom-loving libertarian, anti-government mantra, for the most part gun nuts are actually authoritarian bullies and closet totalitarians.

Wayne LaPierre's unhinged press conference illustrated that perfectly. In the wake of Sandy Hook, this is what he came up with:

The truth is, that our society is populated by an unknown number of genuine monsters. People that are so deranged, so evil, so possessed by voices and driven by demons, that no sane person can every possibly comprehend them. They walk among us every single day, and does anybody really believe that the next Adam Lanza isn’t planning his attack on a school, he’s already identified at this very moment?

How many more copycats are waiting in the wings for their moment of fame from a national media machine that rewards them with wall-to-wall attention and a sense of identity that they crave, while provoking others to try to make their mark.

A dozen more killers, a hundred more? How can we possibly even guess how many, given our nation’s refusal to create an active national database of the mentally ill? The fact is this: That wouldn’t even begin to address the much larger, more lethal criminal class -- killers, robbers, rapists, gang members who have spread like cancer in every community across our nation.

These individualists' answer is to create another massive government database and put more armed cops in civilian institutions. Smells like freedom, doesn't it?

Meanwhile, back in America:

The National Rifle Association today held its first press conference since last week's deadly shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary, and the takeaway was clear: We need more guns.

"The only thing that stops a bad guy with a gun is a good guy with a gun," said NRA Executive Vice President Wayne LaPierre.

He went on to call for an armed police officer to be stationed in "every single school" across America to prevent further mass shootings, as critics tried to point out that armed law enforcement officials might not be the panacea the NRA thinks it is.

But before they could finish their sentence, the counterargument made itself as news broke of a mass shooting event in Pennsylvania with multiple casualties, including state troopers.

According to local reports out of Blair County, at least four people were killed and five more were injured in a shooting spree near Altoona. The gunman is said to be among the dead, and at least two state troopers were hospitalized with non-life-threatening injuries.

WPXI's Courtney Brennan says she was told by emergency officials that the shooting suspect "was 'mobile' at one point and went up and down a rural road and shot victims."