Blog dedicated primarily to randomly selected news items; comments reflecting personal perceptions

Monday, August 04, 2014

Thus Spake Moses

"Sacred stuff resides in that wooden stock and blue steel, something that gives the most common man the most uncommon of freedoms."
"When ordinary hands can possess such an extraordinary instrument, that symbolizes the full measure of human dignity and liberty."
[the late] Charleton Heston, spokesman, National Rifle Association, U.S.A.
Charlton Heston in The Ten Commandments holding the tablets of the covenant
"A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed."
Second Amendment, United States Constitution
The civil-rights, gun-ownership lobby in the United States is a precision instrument of defiance against the logic that when people are in possession of guns, bad things happen. Guns, not people may be the killing factor, but it is people who use the guns to advance whatever agenda for good or for ill, who are responsible for the carnage of deathfall, from young children playing with their parents' prized possessions, or psychopaths using their legally-gotten guns to create a modern-day massacre.

The history of gun ownership in the United States is the history of the making of the United States of America, when in the westward march to claim the abundant land awaiting the arrival of European settlers the aboriginal population of the geography felt compelled to respond to aliens insisting right of ownership to land held sacred by the nations that pre-dated their presence. Guns were needed to defend against the rain of arrows that made the statement that the land was the first-comers'.

Guns were required again when those former Europeans-turned-North American revolted against the edicts of Great Britain and the American Revolution made its historical entrance in the formation of the United States. But history has a habit of marching on, and the American Civil War entered the scene and not only were weapons required to enable the South to defend its ownership of black slaves against the interference of the North with its mistaken belief that all people should be free, but post Civil War, guns were needed to protect good white folk against the emancipated black hordes.

A pioneering nation needed its firepower. And when the American Constitution was being created, there were those among the founding fathers, suspicion of a national army that might become an instrument of tyranny, who felt that armed Americans who were capable of rising up against an unjust government might represent the best possible assurance that the people ruled, in a free and democratic society.

Today, America is a free and democratic society, one with the highest ratio of guns-per-population, and outbreaks of carnage are all too frequent, bringing horror and condemnation to the issue of gun ownership. Inciting the National Rifle Association's ire to defend its values on behalf of the people who love their guns, whether for sport shooting, game hunting, target practise or other lawful gun interplay. And this is why it is anything but uncommon to see gun racks in the cabs of half-ton pickups.

It's an attention-getter, is it not?

The popular gun-culture Guns & Ammo magazine informed readers in 1967 that the gun control movement represented a plot hatched by "criminal-coddling do-gooders, borderline psychotics, as well as Communists and leftists who want to lead us into the one-world welfare state." The National Rifle Association, once merely a club for sportsmen became a political organization warning members of "jack-booted government thugs."

This week, the United States Court of Appeals for the 11th Circuit upheld a Florida law dating from 2011 making it an illegal practise for doctors to enquire of parents whether they keep a gun in their homes. According to some experts, the presence of such weapons in a home make it "43 times more likely to be involved in the death of a member of the household than to be used in self-defence."  

And this week, too, as it happens, James Brady, wounded in the 1981 attempted assassination of then-President Ronald Reagan, who was a tireless campaigner for gun control, has died.
James Brady was left paralyzed after being shot in the 1981 attempt to kill then-U.S. president Ronald Reagan.
James Brady was left paralyzed after being shot in the 1981 attempt to kill then-U.S. president Ronald Reagan. (Evan Vucci/Associated Press)

Legislation was signed by Georgia Governor Nathan Deal earlier in the year permitting residents of that state to carry guns into bars, government buildings and gun-friendly churches. Not to be outdone, Sam Brownback, the Governor of Kansas, signed a bill to ban any local government from enforcing restriction ordinances on the open carrying of firearms. "Kansans have long believed the right to bear arms is a constitutional right", he asserted.

Open Carry Texas and similar gun activist groups across the country have been holding demonstrations at various businesses.
Facebook: MomsDemandAction
In Texas "Open Carry Texas" members have been enabled by law to take their children into toy stores, their fathers armed with assault rifles. C.J. Grimsham, Open Carry Texas founder feels such proud openness shows Americans how "irrational" liberals' collective fear of guns really is.

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