Tag Archive | second amendment

People Sometimes Do Bad Things

No one (least of all libertarians) wants mass shootings to happen. In fact, libertarians are among the loudest of the people who speak out and condemn violence, whether it’s orchestrated by random lunatics, police officers, or soldiers within the military. The libertarian position has decades of consistency and history that reveals itself to be loudly and explicitly pro-defense and anti-aggression. The means by which a person commits aggression, and the means by which a person exercises their right to self-defense, are not terribly important, as long as the Defender has weapons equal or greater to the weapons held by the attacker.

One day, that attacker will be the United States Government, and the more we allow them to disarm us, the sooner that day will come. When the Germans surrendered their weapons to the Nazi Regime, they did not expect that their government would ever turn so viciously against them, and this has been the case repeatedly throughout history: very shortly after a population has been disarmed, the illusion of government benevolence is wiped away, revealing a nightmarish, brutish totalitarian thug underneath.

In an era when Nazis are marching, when leftists ransack businesses, when the police murder more than a thousand people every year, it is lunacy to surrender our guns. Don’t the people who suggest this say that Trump is a fascist? Why in the name of all that is good would anyone surrender their means of defense to a fascist regime? It’s certainly true that a shotgun or 9mm pistol is not going to do a lot of good against the true might of the military, once it comes to that, but one stands a much better chance with even a 9mm than one does with a baseball bat. Just because you’re unlikely to defeat Mike Tyson if you step into a ring with him is no reason to have your hands cut off.

I wrote The Power Gap about exactly this reality–when push comes to shove, it’s true: we won’t have much chance against the military. They’ve already effectively gutted our defensive capabilities, and we let them do it in full violation of the Constitution. The Second Amendment protects your right to own claymore mines, drones, cluster bombs, and, yes, even nuclear weapons; it makes absolutely no distinction between one type of weapon and another type of weapon. Further, contrary to popular belief, there was a range of weapon power back then–if the founders had intended We the People to own guns of lesser power than those held by the government, that could have been achieved even in 1787. They didn’t ban cannons from the public, which had already existed for centuries, though, because they never intended the government to possess weapons that the people didn’t. To do so would defeat the entire purpose of the Second Amendment.

Imagine if, today, We the People were still under British rule and sought our independence. Would our shotguns, AR-15s, and revolvers do much good against the awesome power of the UK’s military? No. Our rebellion would be crushed, decimated within minutes as jets we couldn’t even see soared high overhead and dropped bombs on the location of our forces. Whisper, Signal, Wire, the Onion network, cryptocurrencies–even these are not yet enough to allow us to successfully circumvent their awesome technological might, not if push came to shove, because these technologies rely upon satellites that they could (and would) blast from the sky, or simply shut down. EMPs would wipe out our laptops and other communication equipment while we resorted to primitivism and what would be recognized as “terrorism” by most people, because those would be the only tactics left available against such a juggernaut. And we would ultimately be unable to do much damage to the behemoth, just as Al-Queda, ISIS, Boko Harram, and other terrorist groups have been unable to do much damage to American military power.

I’ll even cede, at this point, to let the American government regulate who can and can’t acquire things like fighter jets, nuclear weapons, cluster bombs, and the like–but to have them banned entirely makes us infants before Mike Tyson. But none of this is my point, not really. I’m just explaining my position, and the importance of having weapons capable of truly defending ourselves against the government. Our entire nation was founded by people who did exactly that. And now you want to throw away our ability to do so?

No One Wants Mass Shootings

The question isn’t, “What should we ban?” Anyone who thinks that is the question is being disingenuous. The question is “How can we stop mass shootings?” The answer is difficult to hear, but it’s one that people have to face:

You can’t.

Today, four people in China killed 29 people and injured 130. They didn’t use guns to do this. They used knives. Could it have been worse, if those four people have had guns? Certainly. But you know what else? This little incident wouldn’t have happened if the citizens of China had owned their own military-grade weapons:

It’s simply a part of the human condition. Sometimes, people do bad things. There’s never a way to know beforehand that an otherwise ordinary person is about to do something horrific and evil. Even though I’ve warned extensively about the dangers of data mining and putting every bit of information about ourselves out there into the open, because this can lead to terrifyingly accurate predictions, no predictive algorithm will ever be 100% accurate. We’re already at a point where algorithms can predict whether a person will turn out to be gay, or whether they are on drugs, and they do this with accuracy better than human intuition, but they’ll never be accurate enough. Chasing after the red herring of preventing some Ordinary Joe from losing his mind one day with 100% success will result in each and every single one of us being watched, monitored, probed, and explored by the government at all times. What you’re asking for is, and I hate to pull up the cliche, Orwellian.

Because that’s what it takes to identify which of the 60,000,000 Americans who own a gun is about to lose their mind and shoot someone–and to be sure that everyone who has a gun is registered with the government. Because…

Gun Control Requires Closed Borders

It’s not just people coming across our borders, and that’s a fact. Drugs and guns also come across our borders. If you want to control guns in the United States, the only way to do this is by ensuring that each and every gun in the nation is registered with the government, and this means preventing any new guns from coming across our borders. This is why the UK has been more successful with gun control than other nations–they’re reasonably isolated, with water on all sides. The only way to get in is through an airplane or a ship, and both of those will involve metal detectors at some point. This isn’t the case in the United States–we have lengthy borders to the north and south, and there are many ways into countries on the other side of those borders without passing through such screening processes. To control guns in the United States, you must both control the borders absolutely (again, a red herring) to ensure that no guns get across, and you must have a reasonably tough, watchful eyes on all countries in North and South America.

How effective is this? Not very. We can’t even keep guns and drugs out of our tightly controlled prisons, which are much smaller and much more contained than “the entire country.” But the prison system is the only one even theoretically capable of achieving this task, so we must turn the entire country into a prison to achieve gun control. Once this is done, you might be more successful at keeping guns out, but you won’t be successful enough to justify having imprisoned yourself and everyone in the country.

3D Printing

And even if you manage to do all of that, you have to carefully monitor anyone who is even capable of making a gun. My grandfather has made guns. Even if someone lacks that level of expertise, in modern times all they need is a 3D Printer, some aluminum, and the blueprints. This, while expensive, allows them to create their own totally untraceable gun. How do you aim to stop that? By banning 3D printers? In a world that has P2P networks and the Onion network, it’s not possible to round up and eliminate every copy of the plans to “print” a gun.

In purely logistic terms, the idea of gun control is ludicrous and impossible. It can’t be done. It’s not government regulations that are keeping nuclear weapons out of citizens’ hands–it’s how damned expensive they are. Even so, there are rumors that there are, in fact, nuclear weapons loose within the borders of the United States. We know that the U.S. government has lost some nuclear weapons. Yes, lost. As in, misplaced. Or, far more likely, sold to Pakistan or stolen.

Back to the Question

If gun control isn’t the answer, then what is? Well, as I said, there really isn’t one. People sometimes do bad things, and if they don’t have a gun, they’ll use a knife. The 9/11 hijackers, after all, did not have guns. They had airliners that they improvised into weapons by smashing them into buildings. Even Paddock had improvised explosives that he intended to use. Several people in recent years have used automobiles as the means of mass murder–are we going to ban automobiles because some lunatics notice that they can be used to murder people?

No. That’s insanity. That some lunatic used their vehicle to drive through a crowd and murder people doesn’t in any way suggest that vehicles are the problem. There’s a much larger problem, and one that we would be ignoring if we attempted to ban automobiles: humans sometimes do bad things.

The Power Gap

In the world of intellectual property, I no longer own this essay–even though I wrote it. When I submitted it to the editor who compiled V2: The Voluntary Voice, I asked about using it, and he stated that he considered them donations. That’s fine, and all, but there was never a Volume 2, and I’ve now sent three emails to [the editor in question] about getting permission to use this essay, and none of them have received a reply. Given that, and given that I reject Intellectual Property anyway, I’m going to post it here in full. If you like the essay, you can buy it from Amazon as paperback or eBook as “V2: The Voluntary Voice.” It contains works from several other anarchists and voluntaryists, so it’s worth purchasing if that sort of thing appeals to you. However, seeing so much talk about revolution against Trump makes this essay more important than it was when I wrote it, and I don’t want to just retread the same ground and basically write the essay again. I am making some changes throughout; the changes will be placed in brackets.

Lol. My years of experience as an editor with Cubed3 are making it hard to keep changes minimal.

The Power Gap

The Second Amendment is a strange part of the Bill of Rights, [primarily because its antiquated wording leaves modern readers confused about its literal meaning,] and there are numerous ways in which it can be interpreted. Strictly speaking, the Second Amendment reads as: “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.”

The most obvious problem with interpreting this amendment as protecting the right of individual citizens to have guns is the part about the “well-regulated militia.” It is hard to argue with the interpretation that the Second Amendment ensures that militias have the right to own guns, but that the right resides in the militia, not the individuals [which comprise the militia]. Many go further and state that the Second Amendment protects government-sponsored militias such as the National Guard, but this argument is nonsensical, [basically saying]: The Armed Forces of the Government have the right to own guns and to protect the Free People from the Armed Forces of the Government.

In truth, the Second Amendment’s main purpose is to protect the People from the Armed Forces of the Government. In theory, the Second Amendment allows for the creation of local militias [that] are to be regulated by the Government but not owned and operated by the Government. The Constitution places a clear distinction between the Government’s Army and the People’s Army while acquiescing that the Government has the right to regulate—but not control—the People’s Army.

This is what the Second Amendment protects: our right to form an armed militia to protect ourselves from the armed forces of the Federal Government.

Arms regulation is all over the news these days, and the [Obama Administration] has recently said that the regulation of guns is going to be a hot topic for them in coming months. This isn’t surprising; it has never been a secret that the [Obama Administration] wants more regulation of guns. This issue [consists largely of two opposed sides].

The first side is the Pro-Regulation crowd. Their arguments are wide and varied, ranging from the belief that there is no reason an ordinary citizen would need an assault rifle to [the] less ambitious argument that large-capacity clips are unnecessary. The second side is the Pro-Gun crowd, and [it saddens me to observe] that the majority of pro-gun arguments revolve around the question of hunting.

I want to make something very clear. At the time the Second Amendment was written, people lived in homes that they built themselves. [We] had just fought for our liberty against Imperial Britain, and we were starting to seriously antagonize the Native Americans, a hostility [that] only increased. [When the Second Amendment was conceived], families were largely self-sufficient: they grew their own food, built their own homes, and they hunted their own food.

In the late 18th century, there was no Central Heating. There were no refrigerators, no freezers, [few]* preservatives, and no Wal-Mart. In the late 18th century, when winter struck, families had to survive the cold months by eating food they had preserved, and by hunting. Without the ability to hunt during these winter months, families would have starved en masse. The idea that the Government would try to take away the guns from individual citizens was, to be frank, beyond the wildest dreams of even the most imaginative Founding Father. Guns were necessary to life in those days. [Nearly] every free man in the entire country owned at least one gun. Guns were simply a part of life in the late 18th century, and not Thomas Jefferson, Benjamin Franklin, nor Thomas Paine, could ever have imagined a time in which the right of Individuals to own guns would come into question. This is why there is no amendment in the Bill of Rights that protects the right of Individuals to own guns.

The idea that the Government would one day attempt to confiscate or restrict gun ownership was beyond the Founding Fathers. There were no assault weapons, there were no tanks, there were no bombers, UAVs, or anything else. There were rifles, cannons, shotguns, and pistols, and there really wasn’t a lot of variation with these weapons within their categories until much later during the Civil War. In the late 18th century, though, a technological gap between the weapons used by the armies of the Government and the weapons used by individuals for hunting was non-existent. Generally speaking, the same gun a man used for hunting would have been the same gun he used to fight the British[**].

Technology progressed, though, and we invented refrigerators, central heating, and preservatives, and we invented a lot of new kinds of weapons. Pistols became secondary weapons, if they were used at all, in the military, while the public at large still found great value in pistols. At this point, the gap in technology came into existence. At this point, the gap in power came into existence.

Cannons evolved into tanks, and tanks were so expensive that the average person could never afford one. The Government had bombers, fighter jets, cargo planes, land mines, and all sorts of other weapons that were simply too expensive to be owned by the average person. Whether or not an average citizen had any business owning a fighter jet or land mine isn’t the question, because the Constitution makes no distinction between powerful weapons and less-powerful weapons. The Constitution does not say that the Federal Government can have nuclear weapons, but the People can’t have them*^.

Our human desire to kill each other has created a very dangerous world. The Founding Fathers could not have fathomed the nuclear weapon; they could not have fathomed a weapon that could, in seconds, annihilate 30 square miles of human beings. They could not fathom that the Military Industrial Complex would one day eat hundreds upon hundreds of billions of dollars every year in an attempt to make bigger, better, and more efficient weapons of mass destruction. The Founding Fathers could not fathom that the gap between “Weapons owned by Individuals” and “Weapons owned by the Government” could ever become so great.

The gap did become enormous, though. The Federal Government now has hundreds of versions of the most destructive weapon ever invented by humans. The Federal Government conducts research into biological and chemical weapons [that] would devastate entire populations. The Federal Government has satellites and supercomputers that can crack into every email, text-message, and phone call across the entire world and unlock its contents, and thanks to George W. Bush, a warrant is no longer required for the Federal Government to do so.^^

We have come to a point where the Federal Government could literally wipe out every single American citizen in mere minutes. If an American version of Adolph Hitler rose to power in the modern United States, there would not be a thing the citizens of the United States could do to stop him. If President Obama decided to declare himself “President for life” and started abolishing what is left of the tattered and torn Bill of Rights, and had the support of the U.S. military, then there wouldn’t be a thing that We the People could do about it.

It may be unlikely that President Obama would declare himself “President for life.” It may unlikely that the next President, whoever he or she will be, would declare himself or herself “President for life.” I wouldn’t dare to even attempt to predict when this would happen or who would do it, but a precise prediction isn’t necessary.

Friedrich Hayek explained in detail in his book, “The Road to Serfdom,” that it was not some quirky character defect of the German People that allowed them to follow Hitler. The same is true for those people who followed Stalin, Mao, Caesar, and Napoleon. It was not a character defect of the American People that allowed them to firmly stand behind George Bush as he invaded not one but two sovereign nations and the results of our invasions—the mass slaughter of men, women, and children—were flashed all over non-American news networks.

Most importantly, though, is that it was not a fundamental flaw in the morality of the German People that allowed them to elect Hitler and follow him even as he became a dictator. The morality of a nation’s people really has nothing, as Hayek explained, [to do] with the rise of a dictator. There are other factors that lead to central planning and dictatorship, and over and over throughout human history, every nation that has fallen to a dictator has shown these warning signs beforehand.

These warning signs are rampant in the United States today [emphasis added]. Hayek’s deepest fear was that Great Britain and the United States were on the fast track to despotism themselves. Nearly 70 years have since passed, and those original signs are still present. Those original signs are also accompanied by several new signs, several clearer signs, and now, as all the conditions appear ripe for the rise of an American dictator, the Federal Government is pushing the idea of Gun Control.

It’s not a question of “who” will be the dictator to rise, and it’s not a question of “if” a dictator will rise. It’s a question of “when.” History is clear. History does not lie. Worse yet, History has an annoying and lamentable tendency to repeat itself. Life in the modern United States is virtually indistinguishable from life in Nazi Germany just before the outbreak of World War 2 and the beginning of the Holocaust. I’m in no way saying that this will happen in the next few years; I’m saying that it will happen.

No one knows when an American Dictator will rise to power by promising us a Utopia created by the “wonderful” central planning of the leviathan in Washington. One thing, however, is certain. In ancient Rome, the Romans never suspected that Caesar would become a dictator and crucify the Republic. The ancient Romans would have said, “That will never happen to us—we have laws in place to prevent just that.” Similarly, the Germans would have insisted, “That will never happen to us—we have laws in place to prevent just that. We’re a peaceful, Liberty-loving people! We’d never allow that to happen!” The Russians undoubtedly said the same before Stalin; the Italians undoubtedly said the same before Mussolini; the Chinese undoubtedly said the same before Mao.

We are in a worse position than any of these other nations that have fallen to a despotic totalitarianism, [because] we could not fight against our Government if our Government attempted policies similar to what the Nazis pursued. We could not fight against our Government if our Government, like Stalin did with Russian Christian farmers, decided to start rounding up and slaughtering us for any amount of dissent. This is the problem with gun control.

It is absolutely certain that we will one day face an American Hitler/Caesar/Stalin. History has shown time and time again that laws will not prevent the rise of a despotic dictator. History has shown time and time again that the “goodness” of a People will not prevent the rise of a despotic dictator. History has shown time and time again that the good intentions of a People, when combined with their fear and belief that they need more security, will produce a despotic dictator. Whether we look at Obamacare, the Patriot Act, the FEMA Act, the NDAA, welfare programs, or somewhere else, we clearly find two things in the United States today.

First, we find that there is a clear and overwhelming desire by the American People to have the Federal Government do benevolent things. This is how we got the Affordable Health Care Act (Obamacare)—the People desired the Federal Government to step into the health care field and benevolently ensure that each American has “the right” to health care. Many Americans are now afraid of the potential disasters that can be created by automatic weapons and large-capacity clips and are asking the Federal Government to step in and benevolently restrict or outlaw the ownership of these things.

Secondly, we find that there is a predominant fear across the United States [that has fluctuated some but remains a factor] since the 9/11 attacks. The [attack on our Libyan Embassy] caused indignation and anger, but not fear. Fear is still present, though, as the recent renewal of the Patriot Act clearly shows—the main argument presented in Congress in support of renewing the Patriot Act was that the “terrorists are still out there.” The recent shootings are causing fear such that Americans are now ready to surrender the ability to own automatic weapons.

The road to Hell is paved with good intentions. If that’s the case, then the road to Totalitarianism is paved with fear. We have surrendered a lot of our Liberty since September 11, 2001 so that the Federal Government could “better protect us” from the terrorists, and once we surrendered one Liberty, we jumped onto a spiral that will only end when every Liberty is taken from us.

The Constitution was the line in the sand between our Liberties and the Government’s Power. When we allowed the Patriot Act to demolish the Fourth Amendment, this line in the sand was erased and moved closer to Tyranny and further from Liberty. We have set the precedent and the Government knows it. The Federal Government knows now that when we are afraid, we are more than willing to surrender Liberty in exchange to feel safe. It’s now obvious that we’re never going to get the Fourth Amendment back. If the argument last year for renewing the Patriot Act was that “the terrorists are still out there,” then the Patriot Act is going to be in effect until the end of time. The terrorists will always be out there. We will never rid the world of what our Government defines as “terrorism.”

Now we have the NDAA (and numerous other bills), which handed over to the Federal Government the power to arrest, detain, and imprison American Citizens indefinitely without a trial. Since no trial is needed, no cause is needed. If a person never gets a trial, then they will never be found Not Guilty. If a person never gets a trial, then there is no requirement to even have a justifiable reason in arresting a person. It really doesn’t matter whether or not the Federal Government has indefinitely detained any American Citizens, nor does it matter whether they are likely to do this any time soon. The fact is that the Federal Government can arrest you for no reason at all and imprison you for the rest of your life without ever giving you a trial or telling you why you were arrested.

The Federal Government already has this kind of power, and we’re still discussing whether or not an American Hitler is going to rise? It’s abundantly clear. The United States Government is brazenly passing laws which legalize their committing actions which were the reason why we hated Hitler in the first place. The United States Government is doing it in the open, in broad daylight, without any fear of repercussion from the American People—Hitler would have loved nothing more than to do in Germany what the American Government is now giving itself the power to do to us.

The Federal Government, though, has no concern at all that we’re going to do anything about the NDAA or the Patriot Act. The Federal Government gave itself the power to indefinitely detain American Citizens with total impunity because there is already nothing we can do to stop them. There is nothing we could do that would repeal the NDAA. The same power-loving, war-mongering, naïve puppets that passed the NDAA will be the same power-loving, war-mongering, naïve puppets who renew the NDAA, and Public Opinion will make no difference at all. Public Opinion didn’t matter to the Patriot Act’s renewal, after all.

Systematically replacing our Senators and Representatives with honest people of integrity who would vote against and repeal all infringements of our Liberty is an impossible task. Since the only option, without replacing each and every Congressman who is not exclusively Libertarian, left is revolution, the Federal Government is left smoking its cigars and drinking its champagne in celebration of their newly-acquired power.

If events came to a head—if the Federal Government started exercising this power, for example—and a revolution was necessary to avoid the rising American Hitler, then the American People would not stand a chance. The United States Military, which will predominantly support the Federal Government and not a revolution against it, has UAVs, automated and robotic soldiers, tanks, jets, cluster bombs, and all sorts of things that the American People do not have. And if the White House gets its way, the American People will be left with single-shot shotguns and single-shot rifles to defend themselves against the tanks destroying their homes.

I don’t have a solution. The situation is bleak and there is precious little hope that Liberty is going to prevail and that the rise of an American Dictator can be prevented. I couldn’t begin to postulate a way to prevent President Obama, if he decided to, from declaring himself “President for life.” My goal here isn’t to present a solution; my goal here is to present the problem, because Americans seem to be unaware of it.

We are already in a situation which renders us nearly powerless to prevent any President from declaring himself a life-long dictator. We are already in a situation which renders us nearly powerless to defend ourselves against the weapons of the Federal Government. The situation is dire, and the power gap is only going to increase if we remain ignorant of it. We must spread the facts; we must spread the true gravity of the situation in which we’ve found ourselves. We must work toward a solution; we must work toward the restoration of Liberty and the Balance of Power between the Federal Government and the People. Before we can do these things, however, we must understand the problem… and the problem is much more severe than we realize.

* Fact-checking fail. Salt is a preservative and definitely existed then.

** The Kentucky Long Rifle, invented by a greatx17ish grandfather. 😀

*^ I would imagine that it’s this line that caused one of the critics to call me a Constitutionalist, which showed a large misunderstanding of Constitutionalism on the critic’s part. Simply referring to the Constitution in a society where the Constitution is, presumably, the highest law of the land does not qualify someone as a Constitutionalist. I hate the Constitution. But it’s there right now–it literally exists. Any discussion about the state of our rights according to the state will necessarily begin at the Constitution, even if the discussion doesn’t end there.

^^ Predating the Snowden leak by at least 4 years! XD

Ohio State: Gun Rights Advocates Jumped the Gun

My condolence, whatever it is worth, to everyone who was injured, and to the families of the murdered, in today’s attack at Ohio State University. There are never any words to ease the aching heart of those affected by such tragedies, and I’m not going to attempt to. Nothing but time will heal the wounds suffered today, and there is no amount of time that will wipe away the scars of it. If you are one such impacted person, click away. It’s not because I’m about to say anything insensitive, but because you have better things to be doing.

I’m pissed off at Second Amendment advocates and libertarians for jumping the gun on this attack. Fueled solely by media reports of a shooter at the university, people pounced and immediately started blaming Gun Free Zones. I’ve seen it primarily on Facebook, but it’s hardly limited to Facebook. It was also on every news article about it that I saw–the comments were absolutely filled with people blaming Gun Free Zones and bitching about how liberals were going to use this to create more gun regulations.

prick

Then something very, very bad happened.

It was revealed that it wasn’t a shooter at all, but a lunatic who committed vehicular homicide and who then went on to attack people with a knife.

The New Media

It immediately occurred to me this morning why traditional media is dying: it simply can’t compete. The “shooting” was still freaking happening when I learned about it, when people all over the Internet were still talking about it. It made me aware of several other things, too, like the fact that here in America we now politicize mass shooting while they’re still happening. Of course, most of the people who do this–who argue against Gun Free Zones while a mass shooting is “taking place”–insist that they’re not politicizing it, and that they’re just defending against the liberals who will politicize it and attempt to regulate guns further.

However, I’m not sure that it’s really a good thing that we gain access to such news while it’s still happening. Even before I knew that it wasn’t a shooter at all, I remarked to a friend via email that it causes us to jump to conclusions with little-to-no information. I can’t guess how many people jumped to the conclusion that this shooting wouldn’t have happened if it hadn’t been a Gun Free Zone. With traditional media, we wouldn’t even learn about the attack until the evening news tonight, at which point we’d hear that a lunatic with a knife did it. Without social media, the Ohio State incident would never have been called a mass shooting.

Gun Free Zones Are Bad

The narrative was that this mass shooting took place in a Gun Free Zone, and, because it was a gun free zone, no one on site had a gun to put a stop to it, and they had to instead call the police, which includes a delay. Instead of a student going, “Oh, hell naw!” and whipping out a gun to put a stop to the shooting, they had to wait, hide, cower, and run, unarmed, and wait for the police to come and rescue them. Their point is one that I adamantly agree with. I’m a member of the Bear Nukes Caucus of the Libertarian Party–I advocate total freedom of arms. Tanks, nukes, whatever, yes, I think you should be allowed to buy it. No, I’m not joking.

So that’s the context for everything I’m about to say. I’m as anti-gun-regulation as a person gets. I’ve got several guns. I’ve made a flamethrower. I’ve got the Anarchist Cookbook, I am armed, and I am ready.

If it had turned out that this was a shooter, they would be absolutely right. The criminal, after all, doesn’t care that it’s against the rules to bring a gun somewhere. Only people who care about the law will abide a law that says they can’t carry a gun somewhere. This is Common Sense 101. The only way to have a Gun Free Zone work is with absolute gun control and zero gun ownership. Obviously, this requires closing down the borders, since people can and do smuggle weapons across the border; you can’t have gun control when you have insecure borders.

However, the moment it was revealed that the attacker had a knife, not a gun, the entire argument got flipped on its head, and the pro-gun crowd had handed liberals evidence that gun free zones work on a silver platter.

The Attacker Didn’t Have a Gun

The moment that it was revealed that the attacker had a knife, libertarians and pro-gun people went from arguing that the victims should have had guns to defend themselves to arguing that the attacker should have had a gun rather than a knife. They don’t realize it, but that’s precisely what they ended up arguing. Abolish Gun Free Zones? In a Gun Free Zone that was just attacked by someone with a knife, almost certainly because they couldn’t get a gun? So you wish they’d have had a gun for their rampage?

I know that isn’t the argument that libertarians and pro-gun people are trying to make, but it doesn’t matter what they’re trying to say, not when “what they mean to say” conflicts so spectacularly with what they’re actually saying. Abolish the Gun Free Zone? Oh, yeah, because it would have been so much better if the attacker had a gun, right?

Once more, I completely agree that gun free zones are ineffective, and that the attacker could certainly have gotten a gun if he’d been willing to wait or shell out the money. But these arguments don’t matter! If guns had been cheaper–because they weren’t black market–or more readily available, then this would have been a shooting. If you’ve fallen so far into your dogma that you can’t see that basic fact, then please, for the love of god, stop arguing for libertarianism.

Because you are arguing that the attacker should have had access to guns.

circle-jerkAnd while I totally get your point and agree with what you’re saying, the fact remains that people who don’t already agree with you will not be persuaded.

In your hypothetical, Lunatic buys a gun, and goes to shoot up Ohio State. Instead, he is shot by another student who has a gun for self defense. The only person who dies is the lunatic. Yeah, I get it. I agree. A properly trained population of people acting as their own defenders, their own police force–that is the only way to curb murders and mass shootings. However, your hypothetical is too far removed from reality for the liberal to agree, and it’s the liberal who must be convinced.

When you say that, the liberal hears “The attacker should have been able to get a gun.”

You’re thinking about this only from the perspective of a victim; the liberal is thinking about it only from the perspective of an attacker. That’s an interesting distinction worth analysis for another day, though. You’re thinking about all the victims who could stand up and defend themselves instead of being victims. The liberal is thinking about the attacker and all the damage the attacker can do with a gun. That’s how the liberal sees the world.

And if you want to persuade people, you must be willing to look at the world through their prism. This is not optional.

You absolutely will not persuade them that it would be a good idea for the attacker to have had a gun, and the moment it became known that this was a stabber and not a shooter was the moment you found yourselves arguing that the attacker should have had access to guns. Whether that is what you meant or not, it doesn’t change the fact that it’s what you’re arguing.

A Lesson Learned

I can’t tell you how glad I am that I only emailed a friend about the “shooting” at Ohio State. And while I am not minimizing anyone’s suffering, it is almost certainly true that the violence would have been much worse if the attacker had been wielding a gun. Compare it to the tragedy in Orlando, where 49 people were killed by a guy with a gun. At Ohio State, the only person who is dead is the attacker.

Contrary to what you are saying, this is strong evidence that the Gun Free Zone, the mandatory wait times, and the high prices of guns… actually work as methods of deterring gun violence. You can’t say otherwise. Even in our system, the attacker could certainly have gotten a gun if he wanted to. Maybe he would have had to take a second job to afford it, but there’s no doubt he could have gotten one. But instead he attacked the university with a knife. And you’re arguing that more people should have guns. Your “more people” now includes that guy who attacked the university with a knife. Why didn’t he use a gun? I don’t know, and I’m not going to pretend to know. But there are good chances it had something to do with the cost, the mandatory wait times, maybe the background check he might not have been able to pass, who knows?

Whatever is the reason that the attacker didn’t have a gun, the fact remains that he didn’t have one when he attacked.

And you’re arguing that he should have been able to get one.

So please, I beg you, stop trying to argue for our side. You’re not helping.

Or continue arguing for our side, that’s fine. But for the love of fuck, please learn the valuable lesson from this experience that:

  • You should not politicize an issue at least until the event is actually over.
  • You should not attempt to hold a tragedy up as evidence of your ideology until the facts are in.
  • Wait until a shooter is confirmed before you start railing about why everyone should be able to have a gun.

I think that last point is the disconnect that people aren’t seeing. Once it was revealed the attacker didn’t have a gun, they suddenly were arguing that “everyone should have a gun, including the attacker.” That is not an argument that is going to persuade people.

We have to be willing to see the world through the eyes of people who disagree with us. And those people who disagree with us were just handed evidence that gun free zones work, that gun control regulations prevented the attacker from getting a gun, and that one mass shooting at least was prevented by these measures. Additionally, you backed up their position that you would rather attackers have guns than knives. It is irrelevant whether you believe what they believe or not; you have to understand what they believe and why they believe it. How else could you possibly show them that they’re mistaken?

Final Debate Review: You’re Breaking My Heart, America

Well, the debates are finally over. Thankfully, they saved the best for last. This started out as a really good debate–it was an actual debate, and the moderator was fantastic, interrupting both candidates equally and encouraging dialogue and genuine conversation. It was one of the best presidential debates that I’ve ever seen, until about halfway through. Trump couldn’t resist opening his mouth to say “Wrong” over and over, and Hillary simply refused to shut up. The moderators should have the authority to cut the candidate’s microphone if they don’t shut up. There were numerous times when Hillary behaved like a child this time, refusing to stop talking even though the moderator just repeatedly asked her to stop.

I didn’t get to finish the debate. I had it paused with about fifteen minutes left, and they ended the live stream. Apparently, this meant I could no longer watch what my browser had already cached. Anyway, here are my notes, some brief and some long, about how the debate went.

“What kind of country are we going to be?” Hillary asks. She’s exactly right. The question this election is between globalism, imperialism, and world domination, or “something else.” I don’t know what you want that “something else” to be, but it doesn’t matter if Gary Johnson gets 30 Electoral College votes, Jill Stein gets 16, and Castle gets 9. It only matters if someone hits 270. I don’t care who you vote for. Except I really do beg you. I implore you–I am begging and pleading with you–do not vote for the warmongering, bloodthirsty Hillary Clinton. Yes, vote for Trump over her.

Between the two, I would take Trump any day of the week. I don’t know how badly Trump will fuck things up, but I am absolutely confident that he would not start World War 3. Conversely, I am reasonably certain that Hillary not only could start World War 3, but legitimately intends to. A lot of people have noticed this, and I am not alone in it. Regardless of what you think of him–and this is the first time I’ve ever seen any of his work–Stefan Molyneaux has compiled quite a collection of evidence supporting this idea; it’s pretty clear that Hillary wants Russia.

Please do the world the favor of watching the first half of that video before you vote. This is an enormous prospect, not something to roll your eyes at. We’ve all heard Hillary speaking about the Russians. “They’ve launched cyber attacks…” “We will punish them…” “We need leverage over them…” “We will retaliate with our military…” “Putin himself is doing this…” She hasn’t been subtle in any sense. If we elect Hillary and this war erupts, you cannot say that you didn’t see it coming. The writing is on the wall. All you have to do is look at it. With something as huge as war with Russia appearing to be on the line, we have to seriously consider things.

Deny Hillary 270 by voting for anyone else. Literally anyone else. Vote for Marilyn fucking Manson if you want, I don’t care. Just don’t vote for Hillary. She cannot win because I vote for Daryl Perry. She can only win because people voted for her. So don’t vote for her. Bam. Done. Easy-peasy.

“Do the founding fathers’ words mean what they say…?” lol. Loaded question much?

“Dark, unaccountable money coming into our election system…” From Hillary, that is fucking classic.

Trump’s question about the Supreme Court became an attack on Hillary about her deplorable comment? What the actual fuck? He did finally get to it and say it had to be interpreted in the spirit of what the founders meant, rattled on about the Second Amendment. The Second Amendment is mostly useless to us today, as I wrote in The Power Gap, which you can buy there–none of the money goes to me, fyi. If you wanna throw money at me, throw it at the Foundation for Rational Economic Education or the Mises Institute. Anyway, our shotguns, pistols, and rifles won’t mean a fucking thing against the drones, cluster bombs, and scorpion missiles that our military has. The Second Amendment has long been gutted completely; it does nothing to help us defend ourselves from the state.

Okay, I see now. Trump does talk like a kid. Lots of small words, it is kinda off-putting.

Hillary says she respects the Second Amendment and gun ownership. “Can be and must be reasonable regulation.” No amount of regulation is reasonable. Regulation, by its very nature, is unreasonable. Outlawing guns will prevent gun-related deaths just like outlawing heroin prevented heroin-related deaths.

Fox is actually creating and fostering a dialogue. Holy shit! This is a debate! This is what we should have had the other two times! This is fantastic. Why can Fox do this, but CNN can’t? Fox, you truly deserve a shout-out for this.

Trump, “I am pro-life…” At the moment, are you really? Trump is saying that yes, he wants to see Roe v Wade overturned, and to let it be sent back to the states. It’s already mostly handled by the states, isn’t it? I had a family member who I had to drive to Arkansas because she couldn’t get an abortion here in Mississippi after the 4th week. Are people really trying to outlaw first month abortions?

I’m not getting along well lately with pro-life libertarians, because they’re so smug and sanctimonious when they decry abortion as a violation of the NAP, and thus unequivocally wrong. Um… So we’re just going to ignore the violation of the NAP against the woman as you force her to donate her body to someone else? My point has long been that there’s no longer any way to come out on the side of the NAP regarding abortion. It exists now, and there’s no way to resolve it. It’s the murkiest of murky murkiness. The Pro-Life people aren’t wrong to say that it’s a violation of the NAP, but being Pro-Life is also a violation of the NAP, just in a different way. So it comes down to being a question of whose rights you want to violate: the fetus’s or the woman’s. The pro-choice position is pro-choice: an individual should have the right to make that choice for themselves. That’s the best we can do definitively.

I’m pro-choice. This does not mean pro-abortion. This means that I’m against forcing a woman to donate her literal flesh for the benefit of someone else. I’m also against killing people. This is irreconcilable. Thus, I’m pro-choice: you make your decision. It’s merely a question of how you want to violate the NAP: with violence or with force.

Hillary is for late term, partial birth abortions? I’ll have to look into it, because I don’t know enough about it, but I doubt that’s acceptable in the mainstream.

Everything bad is “…a disaster” if you ask Trump. I found myself removing “It’s a disaster” from something that I wrote recently, because I heard it in Trump’s voice as I wrote it.

No, we don’t need strong borders. If you want gun control, you have to have strong borders. If you want the drug war, you have to have strong borders. We don’t want either of these things. It would be, as Trump likes to say, “a disaster.” Trump knows it, too. There’s a reason he mentions drug control and the border. I like how he just stops and says, “Now. I want to build a wall.”

Trump makes an emotional appeal to fear of drugs and crime. Hillary makes an emotional appeal to compassion about breaking up families. Neither of them are able to provide an actually rational answer. They both simply appeal to emotions. Different emotions, but it’s still an emotional appeal.

How does Hillary stand there nodding as Trump says that her husband signed NAFTA, “the worst trade deal in the history of mankind?”

We need those undocumented immigrants to take lower wages, out of the way of the Minimum Wage laws.

Fox is gonna blast her on those leaks! Awesome.

Oh. No they’re not.

“My dream is open markets and open borders…” “I was talking about energy.” Um… What?

I knew it was coming. “You mentioned Wikileaks. THE RUSSIANS!”

She even said “It came from Putin himself.” Jesus fucking Christ, the fearmongering. Why are people letting her deflect like this? There is not a shred of evidence supporting the notion that the Russians are behind this shit. Stop blaming them, or put up the evidence. This is blatant and obvious deflection. Anyone with a brain can see that. This is why I said that we needed McAfee. Assuming we’d nominated McAfee and assuming he’d magically reached 15%, I believe he’s one of few people capable of nailing down slippery Hillary.

“The Russians have engaged in espionage against the United States of America… You’re going to let him break up NATO… You continue to get help from him…” Goddamn, people, this is so bad. “Seventeen intelligence agencies have concluded these cyber attacks come from the highest levels of the Kremlin and they are designed to influence the elections…”

There is literally no evidence to support that!

The moderators need to start cutting off people’s mics.

Japan and Korea already have nukes, Hillary.

“Our country cannot afford to defend Saudi Arabia, Germany, Japan, South Korea…” said Trump. Exactly, so we shouldn’t try. Or, if we’re going to be mercenaries, then yes, we have to charge for it.

If we’re going to be mercenaries for the rest of the world, then Trump isn’t wrong—they should pay. That’s actually not a bad position. We’re the world’s most powerful military by a huge margin and could charge top dollar as a mercenary force. I hate that idea, and don’t think we should be doing it. It’s a better idea than doing it for free in the name of “freedom.” Let the rebel forces raise the money and hire us as mercenaries, or get out of the mess.

“Growing the economy…” I’m so sick of hearing that. “Employment programs…” No. “Fight climate change…” No. “Help small businesses…” No. “Raise the national minimum wage…” ABSOLUTELY NOT. “Education that goes through college…” No. “Real apprenticeships…” Not the government’s responsibility. “We’re going to go where the money is…” Yes, and that’s why it’s not in the United States. “Rich and corporations will pay higher taxes…” Yes, and that’s why they’ll leave the United States.

Why are the candidates even talking about taxes? There’s literally nothing they can say about taxes that we can believe by any stretch of the imagination. Candidates always lie about taxes.

This moderator is funny. I like him. “Thank you, sir.”

Hillary really just blamed shit on Bush again. It’s been eight fucking years. Seriously, it’s pathetic to blame Bush in 2016.

Hillary! What the actual fuck? Your tax plan is not “bottom-up!” It’s still top-down, for fuck’s sake. The government is still the top.

The only way that we can compete with China and India’s 8% growths is by abolishing the Minimum Wage. There is literally no other way.

Trump said, “And they actually fact checked it and said I was right.” The way he stated this was freaking priceless. Like it was a rare thing that someone fact-checked him and found out that he told the truth because people usually fact-check him and find out that he’s pulling shit out of his ass…

Oh wait.

So Hillary called TPP “the gold standard in trade deals” without reading over the full thing? Are you serious? Because that’s what she just said. “I said it was the ‘gold standard’ until I read the full version.” So she would have signed this deal without fully reading it? Are you fucking kidding me? It’s bullshit anyway, and we all know it. Goddamnit, we all know it. They’ll modify the TPP very slightly, and Hillary will sign it.

This narrative about being kissed without consent needs to be dropped NOW. How stupid and insane have we gotten? When was the last time  you were out on a date and the guy said, “I had a really good time. May I kiss you?” Fuck that noise. You know that never fucking happened. I actually do have a history of asking a girl’s permission before kissing her, and when I was younger, I’d even ask permission before holding their hands. I know first-hand that it’s extraordinarily rare. I’d go as far as saying that if you’re not one of my exes, then the odds are that you’ve never had someone ask your permission to kiss you.

The point is “Kissed without my consent” is a trumped up charge and is absolute bullshit.

Holy shit. That’s actually true. People at the DNC really did pay people to go riot at Trump rallies. I’ve not watched the video yet, but this should be the top story everywhere. The Democrat Party needs to be thoroughly rejected over this. It is hopelessly corrupt. Any political party that would promote violence at an opponent’s rally has no business in the United States. Disband it immediately.

“He’s called a number of women disgusting…” Hillary. Really? How many times have you called him disgusting? So it’s okay to call a man disgusting, but not a woman?

“He never apologizes for anything…” But he does, though. He apologized for the remarks in the 2005 video. So… that’s a lie, and I suspect you know that’s a lie. He also apologized for the remarks about McCAin.

Hillary, no liberal has any right to accuse anyone of being divisive.

Hillary, the people of Haiti hate you and the Clinton Foundation.

Trump does say anything is rigged when he loses. He’s a sore loser. “I didn’t win an Emmy. It’s rigged. I’m not winning the Primary. It’s rigged.”

However, the DNC showed that “the establishment” is absolutely willing to rig things in Hillary’s favor. We don’t know how far up this goes, but we do know that the FBI director was unwilling to prosecute Hillary because she is Hillary Clinton.

I’d take someone blaming a rigged system over someone blaming the Russians and trying to start a war. As far as mindsets go, one is way more dangerous than the other.

Oh, good. Permanent stationing of troops in Iraq to fill in the power vacuum and keep Isis from rising again. Great. Wonderful. Perfect.

I can’t believe that I just listened to the Democratic presidential candidate advocating military action. What the fuck happened to this country? Didn’t the Democrats used to be anti-war? What happened to that? Oh, that’s right. They weren’t anti-war. They’re anti-Republican, and they just used “anti-war” as a way of going after Republicans.

I’m suddenly reminded of the South Park episode where the town splits itself in two over war, and it clearly characterized the town’s anti-war people as Democrats. Man, was that episode way off. Democrats don’t give a shit about war. They love war as much as Republicans do. Democrats just dislike Republicans. This is really, really bad.

America, we have to stop this. Stop it. Please. Just stop it.

Stop killing people.

I don’t fucking care what your reasons are. Stop killing people.

Just stop it.

Hillary: “…an intelligence surge that protects us here at home.” Combined with her beating of the war drums aimed at Syria, I have to say… that scares me. I see bad things coming down the future. The rise of an American Gestapo. Thoughtcrime—thoughtcrime is already becoming a thing, and, yep, it’s the faux progressivists and their “micro-aggressions” who are creating it. I can’t believe this is happening. This absolutely must be stopped.

We must say it loudly, clearly, and unambiguously. “We will support no more war.”

All American soldiers should be returned to U.S. soil. No if’s, and’s, or but’s.

“If you’re too dangerous to fly, you’re too dangerous to buy a gun…” Fuck, man. The writing is on the wall. It’s all right there. Just combine everything we know. Trump isn’t the next Hitler.

Hillary is.

“…to gain some leverage over the Russian government…

Hillary is so goddamned dangerous.

I had to pause the video and reboot my brain when Hillary began criticizing Trump for lying. Really, Hillary? You’re both liars. Between the two of you, I think Trump is probably more honest than you, but of course he’s a liar.

“They’re digging underground…”

Damn, that sounds familiar.

“Aleppo has fallen. What do you need, a signed document?”

That shit’s funny, man. I can’t believe a U.S. presidential candidate just tossed out sarcasm like that in a debate.

“if she did nothing [in Syria], we’d be in much better shape.”

I really wish Trump would stick to non-interventionism. He’d be a passable candidate if he did. But he doesn’t. I’m not convinced that he’s speaking generally, or if he’s talking from hindsight. I think he’s talking from hindsight. Maybe not. I mean, the lessons aren’t hard to learn. Anyone who has been paying attention must surely know that our stupid military adventures are stupid and damaging to our own long-term interests.

Clinton wants a No Fly Zone in Syria.

Serious question.

By what right do we impose a No Fly Zone on a country? Can you imagine if Canada said, “We’re going to impose a No Fly Zone on the United States”? We’d immediately shout back, “Who the hell do you think you are? We’ll shoot your planes out of the sky if you try it.”

So it’s about arrogance and entitlement. We’re just like “Who cares? We’re big and powerful, so we can impose a No Fly Zone any-fucking-where we want.” People… You’re really breaking my heart, America. I can’t believe that we have become so arrogant, so entitled, so aggressive, so bloodthirsty, so vile, so petty, and so disgusting that we think we have any right whatsoever to impose a No Fly Zone on another country.

And we just… take it for granted. We don’t even stop to ask, “Wait. We don’t have any authority over Syria. What the actual fuck? A No Fly Zone? That’s an act of war. Are we declaring war on Syria? No! Because declaring war is so passé. Instead, we’re just going to commit acts of war on a country we’re not at war with, which I’m pretty sure is a violation of the Geneva Convention.”

America: proof that even a country founded by people who explicitly spoke out against military intervention and entangling alliances can become a bloodthirsty imperialist war machine.

When Push Comes To Shove

I do want to take a brief moment to say goodbye to Toni, who I actually just mentioned by name in a post. She died yesterday. She was found dead in her home, and the cause is probably an overdose, but that’s just conjecture on my part, based on what I know of her. She wasn’t murdered, at least. And while I’m not going to fall into the mindset of “She had such a bad life!” and “Heaven gained another angel!” the fact is that the last decade of her life was tragic.

And self-caused.

Worse yet, I was a way out for her, and I wasn’t going to let her fall back onto that path. It was the reason that her family loved me to death. I owned my own company, had my own place, had fought my own battle with drugs and knew how vicious that could be, and kept my eyes on her. But it was for nothing. She slowly slipped back to it, and, to my knowledge, she never tried to climb back out again.

Anyway.

I want to expand on something I’ve mentioned several times, because a lot of people are still arguing that the solution to the problem, the problem that caused the shooting in Orlando, is more gun control. While I’m not going to say everything on that front is fine, I am going to say: that’s a red herring. It can never work.

The reality is that a law can do two things: it can punish a crime, and it can make it a little harder to do something. But if human history has taught us nothing, it should be that a law will NOT prevent anything. Just look at how easy it is to get marijuana in the United States. Marijuana is illegal. Yet people want to smoke it, and so they do. When abortions were illegal, we had back alley abortions. People wanted abortions, and so they got them. In the 1920s, we established Prohibition and outlawed alcohol, and it created two years of horrifically violent crime and people like Al Capone. We attempted to throw more cops, more laws, and more federal agents at the problem, but it was for nothing; we could not weed out all of the Al Capones. What did? Repealing Prohibition. As soon as we repealed Prohibition, people like Al Capone vanished, replaced with Anheiser-Busch and Budweiser.

Outlawing something that people want to do will not prevent them from doing it.

Okay, now take a deep breath.

Deeper.

Be calm, and say it with me.

There are some fucking psychopaths out there who want to kill people.

Okay, so let’s apply everything we know. Murder is already illegal, and the law certainly isn’t preventing murder. People are murdered every single day. Not all of those people are murdered with guns. In fact, a fair portion of those people are murdered with hammers, baseball bats, crowbars, knives–whatever the murderer can get their hands on. Whatever the murderer can get their hands on.

Making it harder for these people to acquire guns is not going to stop them. What do you imagine happening? Do you think Marteen would have sat there in his apartment, thinking, “I sure would love to wage Jihad against the infidels and kill a bunch of gay people, but damn! I just can’t find a gun!”

Of course not. Such an argument is silly.

Radical Muslims have been using homemade bombs for ages, and the availability of guns and ammunition did not really make things easier for Marteen. It meant only that he had to do a little less legwork, but there is no chance that the inability to get a gun was going to stop him. And trying to prevent him from getting a gun is another red herring–a lot of people seem to not understand how extremely long American borders are.

Gun control requires a fence on both borders, and it requires illegal immigration to be totally and completely nipped in the bud. The overwhelming majority of illegal immigrants (Note: I think borders are ridiculous, and think anyone who wants to come to our country should be allowed to, no questions asked–if they can get here, then… then they can get here.) are great, ordinary people, but you’re a fool if you think that smugglers aren’t using those very same channels to sneak drugs and weapons into the country. They simply are. No, these are not the same people trying to find a job at the Home Depot, but they are using the same channels and coming from the same place, and you cannot stop one without stopping the other. If one is possible, then both are possible.

Nor do we even have the resources or manpower to station someone every 50 yards along both borders to make sure that no one is sneaking in guns–and they are sneaking in guns. You can buy unmodified AK-47s in the United States. You just have to know where to go. Gangs in Chicago know where to go. Don’t get into the habit of denying these realities; you will never fix the problem if you deny the facts. And I’m not making a judgment assessment of this. I’m simply pointing out that: it is the case. So even if we outlawed all guns and confiscated everyone’s guns, it really wouldn’t be that difficult for Marteen to get one.

And if he, for some reason, couldn’t get a gun, he would have simply built a bomb. It’s not really that hard to do. And by that point, he obviously didn’t care about whether or not he was caught, so all cards were on the table; he was going to do whatever he had to do, because he wanted to kill people. No law was going to stop him.

When he walked into that club and opened fire, that is the exact moment when push came to shove. There is not a law that could be written that would have protected the people in that club when Marteen walked in and opened fire. Even if security guards and armed police officers had been stationed in that club, they would have been Marteen’s first targets, and he had the element of surprise. Even armed police officers being present would not have stood a chance of stopping Marteen before he gunned them down.

Fuck this asshole.

Under the “best” of circumstances, this disarmed population of 300 people would then have immediately called the police. And, after a 7-10 minute delay, police would have arrived outside the building. Meanwhile, Marteen and his guns are inside the building, with 300 innocent people who are being killed and held hostage. At the very least, there would have been more delay as the police prepared and executed a plan to take out Marteen. And we’re looking at 14-20 minutes with this maniac and his gun having totally free reign over everyone in that club.

What would have stopped him? A law obviously wouldn’t have. None of the present laws stopped him, after all. They were probably no more than inconveniences to him, and it is irrelevant how tight the laws could have been–criminals have spent all of human history finding ways around laws. See Prohibition, marijuana, abortion, homosexuality. So what would have stopped him?

Well… what did stop him?

A bullet.

Hours later, and after fifty people were dead and fifty more injured, someone was finally able to put a bullet into this piece of shit. Is it not obvious? Is it not inescapably clear? What we needed, what would have stopped Marteen and saved a bunch of lives, was if even 10% of the people in that club had been carrying their own weapons and knew how to use them. Marteen would have come in and pulled his shit, and absolutely people would still have died. As we’ve agreed, it was impossible to prevent. All we can do is minimize the damage. And as soon as these 10% of people realized what would happen, one of them would have put Marteen down.

How many lives might have been saved?

I’m not blaming the people in that club for not having guns or for not knowing how to use them. I’m simply pointing out that, yes, the presence of guns and a group of people who knew how to use them would have put the bullet in Marteen hours before the police finally did. His little escapade of terror would have been over very quickly, and it’s extraordinarily probable that fewer people would have died.

The question isn’t “How can we stop this from happening?”

It’s “How can we stop it when it happens?”

Because trying to answer the first question… is impossible. It simply can’t be done. Even a totalitarian police state with absolute control over its citizens wouldn’t be able to accomplish it. Even the Orwellian nightmare of Big Brother in 1984 wasn’t able to stop random criminal acts like those perpetrated by Goldstein. Focusing on that question leaves us distracted and not answering the real question:

How could lives have been saved?

That is the question. How could lives have been saved?