Monday, April 30, 2007

Must Read?

I'm told by an email message from the "gun guys" that this blog entry by Elayne Boosler, over at the Huffington Post, is a must read. I had a look, and it appears instead to be a must fisk. So here goes:
If 33 people were killed by apples instead of guns at Virginia Tech, there wouldn't be an apple left on the shelves or in the homes of this country until apples could be made safe. Screw your "constitutional right" to have an apple, there is something called the "greater good", and the good of the country takes precedence over your "interpretation" of any amendment in the now defunct anyway constitution. Just ask the spinach growers, and the people who love to yell "fire" in a crowded theater. And why do you always forget the words, "well regulated militia"?
This is gonna be some work. By my count, there are three fiskable offenses in this paragraph alone. Let's have a look at the apples to guns comparison first shall we? What if 33 in or around Virginia Tech people died by a McDonalds hamburger? Well, it turns out that in a manner of speaking, they were. I bet at least 33 people died in the area from being overweight, and it was probably all those Big Macs and fries that did it. Turns out I can still go and buy all the fattening greasy food I like in or around VTech, much as some of the nannies in the area might not like it. Just because Micky-D's sells food that you shouldn't gorge on every day doesn't mean that I have to do that. I eat from the golden arches sparingly, but I do enjoy a McChicken sandwich once in a while. Why do I have to suffer because someone with a weight problem can't keep their grubby meat-hooks off the things? Anyway, our dear elayne is wrong on this point. We can get away from the food analogy and ask about cars. How many people die in car accidents (and vehicular homicides for that matter) each year? Are cars still on the road? Right.

Then we have this gem:
Screw your 'constitutional right' to have an apple, there is something called the 'greater good', and the good of the country takes precedence over your 'interpretation' of any amendment in the now defunct anyway constitution.
Well, at least we know where you stand on the constitution, no point arguing further. Next, there is: "And why do you always forget the words, 'well regulated militia'?" Nobody here forgets those words. While they do serve as the tiny crevice by which you get the most meager of finger-holds into the second amendment, they do have a very precise meaning that most of us in the gun-nut world are very well aquainted with, moreso because the gun banners try to use those words against us. The term "regulated" here means not conspicuously governed by a set of regulations, but simply "well disciplined." There is much more to this, and the weight of the evidence provided by the men of the time is in our favor. Just see here for an excellent source of information. Now on to paragraph number two.
If 2500 children under the age of 17 were felled by apples instead of guns every year in America, there wouldn't be a congressman or senator left serving who took one penny from the National Apple Association. The shame and admonishment would be too great. And if there were even incremental steps to take to make apples safer, and even they were fought tooth and nail by your blood money National Apple Association, claiming the straw man of the "slippery slope" to "regulation", America might better see you for the mercenary and shameful organization you truly are.
There are many ways to fisk this paragraph. I choose the following: I claim you don't really care, Ms. Boosler, as your effort could make a much greater difference if you were active for greater safety in, say, private swimming pools. Many more children under the age of 14 die because of swimming pools than because of guns in the wrong hands. In fact, 800 children in that age range perished by drowning, compared with 80 killed by firearm accidents, data compiled here from National Safety Council 2001 resources. It is worth asking, how many of those 2500 children were hardened gang members, or does that not make a difference to you?
Here's a news flash for you gun waving "real Americans": It's not about guns. It's about money. Follow the money. The NRA raises hundreds of millions of dollars by convincing you they are fighting for your "rights". Wake up. It's a business. Just like any other business, except with the help of their bought off representatives, they are the only UNREGULATED consumer product in America. What do they sell? FEAR. Fear, fake patriotism, and fake bravado, just like their commander in chief, President Custer. You're being played.
Fine. Here's a news flash for you, Ms. Boosler: The NRA exists because its four-million members know that we need to be unified in order to prevent people like you from dissarming us. There are many other real grassroots organizations out there working with us to protect our rights. GOA, JFPO, and many others, not too mention the blogs listed to the right on this website. Not to mentin the tens of thousands of active members of The High Road and other gun related forums.

Now it's time for a real doozy:
With their hundreds of millions of dollars raised on the blood of murdered Americans, they pay themselves, they keep their product manufacturers flush, and they buy their government officials. They exist to convince you you need their product. And when sales slow, they target new markets. They market fear to women, then sell them "feminine little purse guns". They market to children. The cartoon character Joe Camel is banned, but sure shootin' Eddie Eagle is alive and well to shit again on Friday. (He teaches children "gun safety", meaning, he teaches children to use guns.)
The last sentences of this paragraph are an outright lie. It is easy for anyone to see that Eddie Eagle teaches kids one set of ideas: If you see a gun: Stop! Don't touch. Leave the Area. Tell an Adult. There is absolutely nothing about Eddie Eagle that teaches children to use guns. So we've learned that Elayne Boosler is either a liar, or completely ignorant. It could be the latter. Maybe she can't imagine that the NRA is a member supported organization that is hyper-concerned about the safety of children. It is entirely possible that she simply went with her prejudices in imagining what an NRA child safety program would be all about and went with it without even trying to check her facts. Lovely either way.

Ms. Boosler, really, comparing Joe Camel to Eddie Eagle is quite distasteful. Have a look for yourself:



compared with



You're telling me you can compare the hyper-cool Joe Camel with "big-n-dumb" Eddie Eagle? Eddie Eagle is a closer match to this cartoon character, don'tcha think?



I don't know who the bigger dumbass is, you or Barney. OK, I give up, I do know. I'm going to skip some of the stuff in the middle... and we pick up here
I watched President Custer speak at the Virginia Tech memorial yesterday. How dare he "express condolences". How DARE he. Here is how his administration helped kill 33 people at Virginia Tech:
He did? Let's find out how our dear Ms. Boosler figures this is the case
Passage of gun industry immunity bill. That's right, you can sue every industry in America, except gun manufacturers and dealers. Your family gets murdered by a madman? Tough.
Why would you sue the manufacturers and dealers? Would you sue a car maker or dealer if Cho had intentionally run 33 people over with a car? The dealer followed the law and checked Cho's background. The background check was insufficient because the STATE of VIRGINIA didn't require the information on Cho's mental state to be in the background check database. Who's really at fault here? Who should be sued, if anyone?
Refusal to aid in renewal of federal assault weapons ban, even though the law had already been eviscerated by the gun industry. Get it? INDUSTRY.
The federal assault weapons ban could not have made a difference in the outcome of the VTech shooting, much as you might wish it could have. Everything Cho used in his rampage was perfectly legal to purchase and own DURING the "ban."
Fighting background checks. The Virginia shooter had been committed to a mental institution. In Virginia that means you can't buy a gun. Oh yeah? Thank goodness the gun shop owner who sold it to him can't be sued.
NOBODY in the President's administration fought background checks. This is another outright lie.
The president helps the terrorists when anyone can have a shoulder rocket launcher that can take a plane out of the sky. And I'm taking my shoes off at the airport?
Another outright lie. Where do you get your information? Exaclty how many planes have been taken out of the sky in America by shoulder fired rocket launchers anyway?
The president helps the terrorists when he supports a ban on release of federal crime tracing data necessary to identify patterns in illegal gun trafficking.
Another lie. This data is available to all LAW ENFORCEMENT AGENCIES for legitimate use in fighting crime. It IS NOT AVAILABLE for fishing expeditions by politicians, lawyers and news media outlets for use in attacking gun owners and the gun industry.

...

And lastly
Guns are for cowards. You can kill from a distance. You are detached, removed. You don't get your hands dirty. You don't feel the life draining out of another human being in an eye to eye struggle, face to face, with your hands squeezing or beating soft, human, flesh, one on one. We had just as many disturbed, sick citizens in America in the last century as we do in this. The difference now is access to weapons of mass destruction. Anyone can have a gun. Anyone. It did not used to be like this. It's easy to kill now.
If you say so, but in America, there are almost as many non-firearm homicides as there are firearm murders in any given year. And Mexico, which has much tougher gun laws than the USA has nearly twice the firearm homicide rate that we do.

And then there's the "punch line" as she puts it:
Today the supreme court overturned thirty years of supreme court precedent, and overturned the findings of six federal courts, to declare war on women, their health, their privacy, and their lives, by upholding a ban on dilation and curettage abortion that contains NO exception to preserve the health or SAVE THE LIFE of the woman. Justice Ruth Bader Ginsberg, writing for the four dissenting justices, called the decision "alarming".
Now what exactly does that have to do with guns or any of the other blather in her post? Maybe she's trying to show how partial birth abortion IS up close and personal, you do have to get your hands dirty, and you can "feel the life draining out of another human being in an eye to eye struggle, face to face, with your hands squeezing or beating soft, human, flesh, one on one." and that makes it OK (accept for the eye to eye struggle bit, since it's more like you just put a bag over their head and then killed them, same difference).

What a waste of electronic ink.

6 Comments:

Blogger Stickwick Stapers said...

Oh, good grief.

If 2500 children under the age of 17 were felled by apples instead of guns every year in America...

The apple analogy is stupid. Is this twit aware that buckets and swimming pools kill more children every year than guns?

Is she aware that cars, cigarettes, alcohol, and saturated fats EACH kill more people every year than guns?

Is she suggesting we should ban all of these things?

Anyone can have a gun. Anyone. It did not used to be like this. It's easy to kill now.

Yes, and thank God for that. As a woman, I do not want to have to grapple hand-to-hand with a 200-lb man who is determined to rape and kill me. I pray that I never have to hurt another human being, but if it comes down to that I would prefer to have a chance at defending myself.

4/30/2007 10:02 PM  
Blogger carnaby said...

Anyone can have a gun. Anyone. It did not used to be like this. It's easy to kill now.

Actually, that's not even true, at least not in the legal sense. Many people are prevented by law from possessing guns, such as felons. Just like people are prevented by law from using drugs and prostitutes, but that's the thing about crime, it involves breaking the law.

5/01/2007 7:35 AM  
Anonymous Bob said...

"Guns are for cowards. You can kill from a distance. You are detached, removed. You don't get your hands dirty. You don't feel the life draining out of another human being in an eye to eye struggle, ..."

Study of the subject in the context of war says otherwise. I suggest On Killing by Dave Grossman for a little insight into just how rare it is for people to willingly kill another human being -- even when given social sanction.

"Anyone can have a gun. Anyone. It did not used to be like this."

No, it used to be trivial -- you could even get a machine gun delivered to your doorstep by the U.S. Postal service -- no government approval required. As Tam points out: mass shootings appear to be inversely related to the ease of getting a firearm.

5/01/2007 8:00 AM  
Blogger BobG said...

"So we've learned that Elayne Boosler is either a liar, or completely ignorant."

I would have to say she is both.

5/01/2007 10:06 AM  
Blogger Stickwick Stapers said...

Bob, you have a good point, and I was tempted to say something about that.

My husband is a veteran of the special forces (Finland), who trained soldiers for combat. He told me that for most people, it is not easy to kill. It's actually a huge thing to overcome the innate unwillingness. Furthermore, there is a price to be paid for it, even when killing is considered "righteous." My husband killed in combat 15 years ago, and to some extent he is a haunted man -- it will stay with him forever.

Boosler is an ignorant twit, and her piece is insulting. The comments over at HuffPo are even more obnoxious -- someone said the piece was worthy of a Pulitzer. BARF.

5/01/2007 11:13 AM  
Anonymous crotalus said...

This kind of crap is why Elayne Boozer, er, Boosler should stick to comedy and not attempt to do any serious thinking.

5/02/2007 11:44 PM  

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