The following was written by my friend Brent Hoffman a very talented, very opinionated writer/b-boy/promo items salesman presently living in the Chicago area.
So, I’m a leftist… however, I’m not a registered Democrat for the same reason I’m not a registered member of N.A.M.B.L.A., and that reason is a secret SO DON’T FUCKING ASK ME ABOUT IT! I’m a leftist in the manner of Bernie Sanders (if you aren’t familiar, dude is one of my heroes, so if youreally care about me, you’ll wikipedia or google his ass and not be so dumb any more), the only Socialist member of Congress. A “Democratic Socialist” as we are called, which is different from Hitler so that’s cool. That being said, I have a LOT of friends who are Republicans, Conservatives and this thing called Libertarianz. We tend to disagree on shit. We tend to occasionally yell and argue. We tend to both think we’re right. We tend to both be wrong. We tend to continuously drink together on weekends, have fun at work together and not HATE each other, at all, despite everything that we fundamentally disagree on. It’s a goddamn miracle that I have more than like three friends, so quick shouts to everyone who has been like “Brent is a stupid fucking asshole” either directly to me or behind my back, and still tolerates me. I love you.
So we need to do something about gun violence but not step on anybody’s rights. Ain’t that about a bitch? Some people just hate guns. and want to see ALL of them gone. They’re idiots and they don’t hold public office (someone mentioning Claire McCaskill in 1, 2, 3..) so chill on that paranoia, righties. No offense, but you aren’t significant enough to spend the money on having people sent to your crib to take your guns anyway. Here’s how it works. There is a problem. The public freaks out. In a knee-jerk fashion, the government responds to calm people down. Sometimes they do a good.. well, a job. Sometimes they have good intentions and piss a lot of people off. This is one of those times. FORTUNATELY, nothing significant has really happened….yet, and it most likely won’t. The Dems in the Senate simply don’t have the votes for an assault weapons ban and hopefully realize that they aren’t necessarily the problem (plus the House is republican-controlled so it won’t even get to the Senate). The GOP tends to vote in lock-step (so why don’t you just get one superpolitician and save some money, aren’t you deficit-hawks? the fuck?), but a few of the Democrats tend to vote differently than the rest of their herd. It’s just not going to happen, yo. Maths. And it won’t happen in 2014, no matter who takes or maintains control of the house, as the senate is going to be “controlled” by mostly Democrat pussies for quite some time.
We will most likely see more ticky-tack laws (high-capacity magazines, deal with it) and then hopefully, juuust hopefully, we’ll get a few things done, and done WELL, that will work and not effect either of us. One of those laws that has already been written as an executive order per Obama (or “King” Obama for the uber-hyperbolic Gary Johnson types) that gets the ball rolling on making it harder for the wrong people to buy legal guns. “But criminals will always find a way to get them” says half the people I’ve talked to about this. Tell that to Gabrielle Giffords, John Roll, Gabe Zimmerman, and Christina-Taylor Green. Jared Lee Loughner just waked right in, WALKED RIGHT IN and bought those guns legally. That shit has to stop, now. In an argument with a friend last week, I said something like this:
This is something that has never happened in a gun store, EVER.
Patron: “I want to buy XXX guns and XXX ammo.”
Store Owner: “I’m sorry sir/ma’am, but just by looking at you, I can tell that you were diagnosed as a Schizophrenic when you were 19, have been hospitalized several times, at times have shown violent behavior toward yourself and others, and currently aren’t taking your medication to curb the delusions of grandeur, paranoia and aural and visual hallucinations that may cause potentially violent behavior especially when you are having a psychotic episode. I am sorry, but I cannot sell you these guns as you may potentially do something horrific with them that could fuck it up for the rest of us.”
If you disagree with REALLY thorough background checks, I would urge you to stop reading and forget I exist. It should be so fucking hard for people like that to get guns, SO FUCKING HARD, that it, just a little, makes it a bit inconvenient (meaning: it takes 45 minutes to apply and could take up to a month to get back, just so they make sure you’re good to go) for people who have nothing to worry about to get them too. If you want a gun, you better be the most squeaky clean, sane person on the block. That being said, if you are that person, I think you should be able to buy whatever the hell you want. You passed the super-thorough, but not-too-thorough-that-it’s borderline-infringing-on-my-rights, background check? ALLOW ME TO SHOW YOU OUR SELECTION OF HIGH POWERED RIFLES. HAVE YOU EVER SHOT A SEMI-AUTOMATIC BEFORE?!? $$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$
Liberal friends, I’m sorry about this one, but you can’t have everything. The assault weapons ban under Clinton really didn’t do shit (Ronald Reagan was also in favor of a ban, and Antonin Scalia said it would have been Constitutional btw, wtf) to curb gun violence. It stopped people like the people that I know who are normal, good, law-abiding American citizens who happen to own assault rifles, from buying them, but not anyone else.
BAD GUYS WILL ALWAYS HAVE GUNS.
This is true, however, Seung-Hui Cho was a bad guy. James Eagan Holmes was a bad guy. Jared Lee Loughner was a bad guy. Adam Lanza was a bad guy. Harris and Klebold were bad guys, but they all used…. wait for it… LEGALLY PURCHASED GUNS! SO… to all of you who use this defense, as much as you may be correct, allow me to poke holes in your argument. Adam Lanza was not about to go to the hood and cop an AK or 9mm with the serial number filed off, and nor were the rest of them. I’m sorry. Stop using this argument. Not all bad guys have illegal gun connections.
THE ONLY WAY TO STOP A BAD GUY WITH A GUN, IS A GOOD GUY WITH A GUN.
Wayne LaPierre and the NRA can eat a bag of dicks. This is the dumbest argument ever, and if you disagree, you haven’t been paying attention. Nor is anybody (unless you’re combat troops) prepared to deal with a flurry of gunshots out of nowhere, especially in an elementary school.
THE HIGHEST SPEED LIMIT IN THE COUNTRY IS 75 MPH, SO WHY CAN CARS GO OVER 75?
Well, unlike assault rifles, cars were not designed to shoot as many people (as they weren’t designed for hunting, look it up) as possible. This argument also holds no water, and neither do the rest of the metaphors people pull out of their asses to defend themselves with. In reality, you don’t even need to pose those arguments.
There are a ton of other little quips and slogans people have been saying to defend their assumed constitutional right to own guns specifically designed for warfare. I GET IT. I really do. What gets me off may not be the same thing that gets you off, but that doesn’t make either of us wrong, we just disagree. If you aren’t deemed to be psychologically unable to own an assault rifle, and have the money to buy one, the ammo for it, and however much it costs to go to the range, by all means, HAVE AT IT.
SO, IN SHORT, I AM AGAINST AN ASSAULT WEAPONS BAN. There, I actually said it. Until the Supreme Court is taken to task (again) over what we can and cannot purchase under the protection of the Second Amendment, it is what it is. Pissed off blowhard liberal opposition or wackjob tea party support or not. Assault rifles are here to stay. There are just too many of them (owned by people who will never commit a mass murder) to get out of peoples homes. However, there are WAAAAY too many of them owned by people with the intention of using them against other people at a moments notice. These people don’t typically own guns legally, which is NOT being addressed by anyone in a position of power, at all.
WHY THE FUCK AREN’T ILLEGAL GUNS PART OF THE CONVERSATION?
How many people were killed by illegal gun owners last year vs. legal gun owners? I have no idea, but I am familiar with the murder rate in Chicago, and it’s safe to say that the illegal gun owners are kicking the asses of legal gun owners in terms of murders committed. In my opinion, the reason why this is continuously not addressed, as much as it’s the bigger issue here, is because of the illegality of drugs. What would happen if just weed were legalized? Gun violence would go down, no question. And if we decriminalized the rest of them? Say “adios” to drug cartels from Mexico and South America spreading their cancer in the lower 48. People are still going to kill each other with guns from now until the end of time, and you can’t cure crazy….. but this is a start. Unfortunately for us, the government makes too much money off the “war on drugs” to make them legal. For the life of me, I cannot figure out one reason why marijuana is illegal while alcohol is, and is completely socially acceptable. I’m not a doctor, so I won’t go into the health reasons why this is ass-backwards, and most of us already know anyway.
Illegal gun owners are fucking it up for the rest of us.
Bad parents (Adam Lanza’s mother) are fucking it up for the rest of us.
The mental health system is fucking it up for the rest of us.
The lack of oversight when it comes to who guns are sold to is fucking it up for the rest of us.
The fact that gun shows (where ANYONE can buy ANYTHING) are somehow legal are fucking it up for the rest of us.
The NRA is fucking it up for the rest of us.
When Wayne LaPierre goes on TV the day after Sandy Hook in 100% defense mode, I’m sorry, but you are no longer qualified to represent RESPONSIBLE gun owners. People like my friends Katie, her family, my friends Dustin, Mike, Anthony, Adam, Leslie, PJ, Chase, Jud, and anyone else I may have forgotten. Some of them may be under the impression that the NRA is there to defend their rights, when the NRA is the political arm of the gun industry… nothing more, nothing less. They are more a lobbying organization than a consumer advocate group. A friend of mine was watching this assclown on Hannity the other day and I hate to say it, but he was eating it up. He’s a gun owner. Not a violent dude, and would never use a gun unless he had to defend himself or his wife, but believes that the NRA is looking out for him when they’re making him look bad, and he’s a good person, one of the better ones I know. Let me explain how the NRA is bad for gun owners. Mr. LaPierre, instead of using his time in the national spotlight to remind people of our real problem, illegal gun violence, goes on the defensive. Had he had a publicist or PR firm with half a brain, he would have used this opportunity to say something like this:
“We at the NRA are devastated by the inconceivable losses by school shootings over the last 20 years, especially in light of the most recent one that left 20 little, dead innocent bodies on the bloody floor of an elementary school. We recognize that there is a problem with legal guns occasionally getting into the wrong hands and are open to hear the government’s solution, as well as providing our own. However, we would also like to point out that responsible gun owners should not be demonized for utilizing their constitutional rights, and that the larger problem, illegal gun violence all over the country, is something that we will work with the government on to stop at ANY COST.”
That was all he had to say, and the left would have left him alone. Hell, Rachel Maddow and Lawrence O’Donnell probably would have given him props, and we could have shifted focus from taking away rights to preventing more crimes. But he didn’t do that. He probably didn’t even consider it, and that’s the NRA’s problem, and the problem of anyone who defends them or believes that they’re doing everything they can to protect their Constitutional rights. THEY AREN’T. They’re fucking it up for you, me, and everyone else who is entitled to what the Constitution allows us by being irresponsible and not shifting public focus from the media-glorified problem to the REAL problem. Dozens of kids are killed every month on the streets of Chicago alone… where’s the outrage outside of the communities where this continues to plague the black community at large? It’s NOWHWERE to be found except for newspaper headlines.
This is already way too long, but now you all know where I stand. I’m not anti-gun. I’m not anti-freedom or anti-American. Quite the contrary. I just see our rights being threatened in ways that most do not. I see the people who have been anointed as the saviors of gun rights as being a responsible gun owners worst enemy. The NRA could be the solution, but they’ve made themselves the problem.
In short, guns are too much a part of our history, like it or not, to get rid of. We also can’t pass laws and expect a piece of fucking paper and a few signatures to stop anyone from going on an Aurora, CO-style rampage. If you believe that, you’re the dumbest person on earth. We also cannot make something like assault rifles illegal when people already own them. A guy I work for is one of the better people you could ever meet, dude is a fucking saint, but he happens to have a couple semi-auto assault rifles. A good friend of mine down the street also owns the same type of guns, but is one of the nicer, kindest, most down-to-earth people you could ever meet who just happens to be a war/history buff and has a bunch of antique guns, and some newer ones (locked up in a 500lb safe). If someone passes a law that makes those two people criminals, I will be the first person protesting against that law on their behalf if nothing else. The only thing we can do is put our heads together to identify why these tragedies are happening, and do what we can to prevent them from happening again without the rights of innocent people being shitted on. I may never shoot a gun in my life, but I’ll be god damned if responsible Americans can’t go to the range, hunt, or have one for defending their home.