Articles

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Shadow of the Gun

Every day another one of the stories comes in. A teacher panicked by a plastic gun, an army man on a cupcake, a t-shirt, a pop tart chewed into the shape of a gun or a finger gun hits the panic button. Supensions and lectures quickly follow as the latest threat to the gun-free zone, usually in the form of a little boy, is tackled to the ground and lectured to within an inch of his life.

Tellingly these incidents rarely take place in the inner city schools where teenage gang members walk through metal detectors at the start of the day. The safety officers in those schools, big weary men with eyes that look everywhere at once, don’t waste their time on toys. Not unless those toys are full-size, painted black and filed down to look like real guns.

It’s usually the schools where a shooting is wholly unlikely; where gun violence is not a daily reality, but an unlikely convergence of horror, that institutional vigilance hits an irrational peak as every school imagines that it could be the next Columbine or the next Sandy Hook.

The NRA’s initial proposal of armed school guards was met with an irrational chorus of protests. More guns aren’t the answer, was the cry. And the leading crier was the White House’s expert skeet shooter. In a country where law enforcement is heavily armed and gunmen are stopped by gunmen in uniforms, a strange Swedenization had set in. The problem was not the man, it was the gun. Get rid of the guns and you stop the killing. Schools across the country are banning not the gun, but the idea of the gun. It is a conceptual prohibition that is meant to push away the threat of gun violence by eliminating any mention of the G word. Gun-free zones mean places where guns cannot be mentioned, depicted or even symbolized as if the refusal to concede the existence of a firearm will eliminate the threat of it being used on the premises.

This isn’t a precautionary attitude, but a pacifist one. Gun horror is not a productive emotion, but learned helplessness disguised as moral superiority. Rather than teaching children to hate killers, schools are instead teaching them to hate guns. And reducing murders to instruments rather than morals, children are left with no sense of right and wrong, only an instinctive horror of violence.

Pacifists have always demonized armies rather than invaders. During WWI they obsessed over gas. During WW2, it was the bomber and the tank. During the Cold War they demonized nuclear weapons. In the War on Terror, they target the drone. By dealing with the object rather than the subject, they are able to avoid the question of moral responsibility. Rather than hold the Nazis, Communists or Islamists accountable for their actions, they extended a blanket condemnation over the weapons-wielders.

The American GI was just as bad as the SS man or the Kamikaze pilot or the Political Commissar. The only difference was in who had the bigger guns. And the one with the bigger guns, was also the most to blame.

That same attitude can be seen today when Israel is blamed for every battle with Islamic terrorists because it has the bigger guns. Rather than evaluating the nature of a conflict and the values of both sides, the pacifists score every war based on firepower.

While the left likes to indulge in stereotypes of gun-toting rednecks and bomb-brandishing generals, the only people who judge the worth of a man by his weapon are the pacifists, the gun-fearers and gun-hiders who mythologize weapons as black agents of evil.

To believe that there is no such thing as constructive violence is to reject free will. Without accepting the necessity of constructive violence, there is no good and evil, only armed men and unarmed men. Without constructive violence, two boys playing cops and robbers in the schoolyard are not acting out a childish morality play, they are becoming desensitized to murder, and without it a child with a pop tart chewed into the shape of a gun is on the way to being a school shooter.

If there is no such thing as constructive violence, then the police officer is not the solution to crime, he is part of the cycle of violence. And if that cycle of violence does not begin with a man choosing to use a gun for good or evil, then it must begin with the gun. The man becomes the object and the gun becomes the subject. American ICBMs become just as bad as Russian ballistic missiles. An Israeli soldier killing a suicide bomber is just as bad as the terrorist. There are no good guys with guns. To have a gun is to be the bad guy.

For decades the gun-control lobby has brandished assault rifles at press conferences and spent more time describing their killing power than their manufacturers have. The rifle has been upgraded to the assault rifle and now, in the latest Orwellian vernacular used by the White House and the entire media pyramid beneath it, weapons of war.

The dreaded assault rifle or weapon of war or killing machine of mass death actually kills rather few Americans. The average shooter doesn’t bring an AR-15 to a Chicago gangland dispute. Despite the number of these weapons in private hands, most of the killing takes place with handguns in the same parts of the country where large amounts of illegal drugs are sold, women trafficked and stores robbed.

Shootings in America are not caused by guns, they are caused by crime. Guns really do not walk off store shelves and go on killing sprees. That’s what criminals are for. But the trouble with that discussion is that it takes us into moral territory. Talking about guns is easy, talking about souls is not. If guns don’t kill people, then we have to ask the difficult question of what does kill people.

It’s a bigger question than just Adam Lanza pulling the trigger in a classroom full of children. It is a big question that encompasses the Nazi gas chambers and the Soviet gulags, the Rape of Nanking and September 11. It is a question as big as all of human history.

Pacifists once used to be able to address such questions, but they have become obsessed with the technology of violence, rather than the spiritual origin of violence. And the technology of violence is largely beside the point. Guns do not motivate people to kill. Nor do they represent that much of a quantum increase in death.

Some of history’s worst massacres happened long before firearms became useful for more than scaring off peasants. The heavily armed Americans of the 50s had lower per capita murder rates than medieval London. It isn’t the gun that makes the killer. It’s not the hand that kills, but the mind.

The gun-free society has little interest in individuals. Its technocratic philosopher-kings want big and comprehensive solutions. Their answer to gun violence is to feed a horror of guns. Their answer to obesity is to ban sodas. Their solutions invariably miss the point by treating people like objects and objects like people.

In the Middle Ages, rats were put on trial for eating crops. Today we put guns on trial for killing people. The left has tried to reduce people to economics, to class and then race, gender and sexual orientation. It has done its best to reduce people to the sum of their parts and then to tinker with those parts and it has failed badly. The best testimony of its profound spiritual failure is that the worst pockets of gun violence are in urban areas that have been under the influence of their sociologists, urban planners, psychologists, social justice activists, community organizers and political rope-pullers for generations. And what have those areas brought forth except malaise, despair, blight and murder?

Banning guns will do as much for those areas as banning drugs did. It is not the shadow of the gun that has fallen over Chicago, but an occlusion of the spirit. Social services have had generations to save the city and they have failed because the technocracy can reach the body, but it cannot reach the soul.

The gun-control activists drew the wrong lesson from Newtown as they drew the wrong lessons from WW2 and September 11. The lesson is not that weapons are bad, the lesson is that people in the grip of evil ideas are capable of unimaginable horrors regardless of the tools at their disposal. A single man can kill a classroom full of children with a gun and a few men can kill thousands with a few box cutters. It isn’t the tool that matters. It’s the man.

Unwishing the gun brings us back to the sword. Unwishing the sword brings us back to the spear. Unwishing the spear brings us back to the stone club. And what then? When every weapon that ever existed or will exist is undone, all that remains is the deadliest weapon of all. The mind of man.

The gun, the sword, the spear and the club took countless lives and saved countless lives. Civilization has always balanced on a future made possible by little boys playing cops and robbers and playing with little green army men. They can either grow up to be the protectors of the future or the frightened men who will stand aside and do nothing when they hear the screams begin to come because they have been told that all violence is evil.

28 comments:

mindRider said...

The symbol worn by pacifists after WWI was -The Broken Gun- and boy when WWII broke out did many of these pacifists who where snapped back into reality franticly try to find and get hold of a non broken one to defend themselves with against the murderous German occupiers.

Paul said...

As always, it was a pleasure reading your article. You have taken on the insurmountable task of attempting to bring light to the unenlightened minds, an insurmountable task.

In my own attempt to understand the liberal logic (an incongruity) I have come to believe that they have reduced most of humanity to a product or a vegetable, neither of which has a soul. By doing so, there can be no moral repercussion when discarding them because they have outlived their usefulness. As vegetables, they exist only as long as there is a benefit to others. As a product, once it has outlived its usefulness, there is no shame in discarding it. In Japan, finance minister Taro tells seniors to "hurry up and die" and in the UK, serious discussion seems to have been bypassed in the medical field as "consensus" deems it permissible for a physician to end the life of an unwanted or a handicapped child.

Above, I say most because there is no expense, no effort they will spare to save themselves. The recent demise of Chavez is just one example whose last words purportedly were,"Please don't let me die."

No soul, no problem. Fetuses and seniors are expendable as are Jews and Christians. Organ harvesting fits right into this mentality. This mentality is the most dangerous weapon ever produced. It"s a weapon which, in denial of the soul, does not need ammunition but has unlimited firepower and can be linked to almost all of the human carnage in history.

meema said...

Good googly moogly, Daniel, you need to get a grip and let go of logic, reason and critical thinking, a condition that has been linked to shortened life span in some advanced socialist societies.

You missed the report about the fifteen year old hero who wrestled down the kid with the gun and got suspended for his bravery which was deemed as participating in an act involving a weapon. So, not only are we not to defend ourselves, we are being conditioned to be cowards.

Why do I keep recalling the future as portrayed by the 1960 sci-fi film, Time Machine? The “normal” people, called Eloi, who live on the surface, are emotionless, mindless livestock for the monster Morlocks who live underground.

Hersh Mendel said...

Daniel,
You prove today's thesis daily. Your mind is more powerful than all the WMD. That's why they declared you (and your cat) a hate group.

Mirjam said...

Awesome article and I wholly agree!

Anonymous said...

Amazing post...sending this to friends...wish I could make the numbskulls in Colorado and DC read it too.

Rich

Anonymous said...

Really great piece. I've marked it as a keeper.

Seems the only persons upon whom liberals will pass moral judgement is anyone who questions them and/or their thinking (aka conservatives). Give a murderer essentially a pass but hang the conservative who points out the libs lack of moral judgement and consistency.

Then the projection occurs when they accuse conservatives of doing precisely what the libs themselves are doing (being racist, ignoring the elderly, etc.). That's when the insanity really kicks in.

All because they have no capacity to truly judge their own morality and human flaws.

They can never be wrong. So the solution (cause) of all thing wrong, bad, or evil must be external. Well, it certainly can't be them. (/Sarcasm)

And so the cycle goes on.

Wes said...


Excellent post. I couldn't agree more with your analysis.

I don't know why anyone would send his child to a school run by "educators" such as those mentioned at the beginning of this article. Do they think that there is no price for having their children transformed into spineless wimps who have learned by example that hysterical overreaction is a legitimate mode of behavior?

Beth said...

Daniel, each paragraph is so profound, so quotable.

The Left substitutes outrage for moral superiority and it is this misguided high mindedness of themselves which has and will lead us to more death and destruction.

"Much that passes as idealism is disguised hatred or disguised love of power" -- Bertrand Russell

freedomsbrushfire said...

Awesome. Awesome. Reblogged on freedomsbrushfire.wordpress.com

Anonymous said...

Wonder how many guns each of the readers own or if they really even own any at all.
Does Daniel Greenfield own a gun?

Daniel Greenfield @ the Sultan Knish blog said...

mindrider, quite aptly said

Paul, they view humans as essentially interchangeable, a bundle of instincts and impulses

meema, the eloi and morlocks can be found living in most gun-free zone cities

Hersh, it was mostly the cat's fault

Mirjam, thank you

Rich, the numbskulls won't read it, but the arguments may come in handy

Anon, the lack of self-awareness leads to moral inconsistency

Wes, not everyone has a choice or realizes how much worse it is now than in their day

Beth, evil destroys itself and all it touches

freedoms, thank you

Anon 2, I live in NYC. Do you have any idea how next to impossible gun ownership is here?

Anonymous said...

Nunya Bidness.

IgorR said...

The left likes magical thinking: saying the "right" (or the "left") things and not saying or thinking the "wrong" things will eventually make the world a better place. If we don't talk about guns or see images of guns, guns will disappear. Not much different that if you proclaim you love the poor, poverty will disappear or if you ban hate speech, hate will go away. Obama recently proclaimed he didn't believe we have a deficit problem. Before his election he believed and it was true, but now he doesn't and it's not true. Sooner or later reality reappears, but liberals attempt to fight it with words as long as they can.

FuzzyBear said...

There is always more to say on the gun debate, except in this case. A great article which actually gets to the final word, the root cause - man's inherent evil. If only people could think thoroughly enough to realize it. But that sells those who would diminish our rights short.

Anonymous said...

They blame the gun because of fear ... and knowledge that the gun itself is blameless. But blaming the killer is dangerous and scary. Blaming the killer would lead to all sorts of awkward conclusions, all of them poltically unacceptable. And it would lead to unaccptable questions of what to do about him. It is so much safer to confront danger where it isn't. And then you can always take away another right from the innocent victim.

-Rurik

Dennis Latham said...

Ninety-percent of crime can be blamed on maybe 10% of the population: the people who can't own guns because they have felony convictions because they are criminals. Yet, liberals in their lasting denial of any logic seem to believe that criminals will follow rules and heed signs and not commit crimes just because some legislators believe law abiding citizens are the problem because they just won't listen that guns are bad, even though many liberals own them and have armed guards. Nothing liberals do ever works because they demand you bend to their way of thought and will get violent if you don't. From what I've read, every mass shooter in this country has been on psychiatric drugs and been a registered Democrat or come from a Democrat family. Wiping out the street gangs, instead of cutting them slack for votes and money, would go a long way to end crime. That will never happen so what they intend to do is eliminate anyone who isn't a progressive idiot. I bet if someone would look at every city controlled by a Democratic administration, you would find rich Democrats and bankrupt cities full of social programs that destroy their cities.

Anonymous said...

Another excellent does of reality that those on the left will never, ever face.

Three blacks were on Glenn Beck's program who brought to light the past history of how the Democrats, particularly those in the South, were able to control blacks after the Civil War by confiscating their guns. An uneducated, defenseless, dependent class is what the left has worked tirelessly to make of us all and that is another reason they must confiscate our sources of defense. That is why they use every tactic they can imagine to scare people into submission to a tyrannical state which is becoming our reality on a daily basis.

Since we know the federal government under George Bush began spying on Americans in America and has built a huge "data center" in Utah to store information about all of us to use against us at some point, we should all be very concerned about this latest indoctrination tool to make children hate guns and thus hate freedom and independence. I believe it is one step in a series of concentrated efforts by the people-controllers to finally end all liberty except for those who more equal than others.

We truly are living in an Orwellian time and it gets more frightening every day.

Research Agenda 21 and that is also one of the efforts in the people controllers bags that too is already changing local communities for eventual complete control by the people haters/controllers.

Elaine

rui said...

That settles it then. Let's put guns in prison!

No, better yet, let's put zyklon b in prison. That stuff killed millions.

Let's also put cars and airplanes in prison, to err on the safe side.

Let's put sharks, donkeys, bears, wolves, snakes, spiders and medusae in prison. Oh yes, and lions, tigers, hippos and elephants too.

Let's put poison, ropes, ladders, bricks, petrol, and fire in prisons... what the heck, let's just put Planet Earth in prison!


RUJV

Bruce said...

"Wonder how many guns each of the readers own or if they really even own any at all.
Does Daniel Greenfield own a gun?"

That's for us, individually, to know and for you to get your knickers in a knot about.

Sarah Penner said...

Amazing. Every word is bang on! (no gun pun intended) How in the world can I reblog this?!
~Sarah at http://sudryandspecific.wordpress.com/

Anonymous said...

Mrs. Finestein will not give up her bodyguards Iam sure. After all the ruling class are considered " high profile", therefore they only need protection with clout. Ted Cruz was not rude to her, he was far too nice. This woman is an evil, self-centered fool.

lemon lime moon said...

"Wonder how many guns each of the readers own or if they really even own any at all.
Does Daniel Greenfield own a gun? "

Why would this matter?

Fat Man said...

Sultan: You have been on quite a roll recently. Another absolutely knock out fabulous article.

CarlJ said...

Bravo, bravo!!
This would be funny if it were not so absolutely true. Fact is stranger than fiction, and the fact here is the Left lives in a ficticious world. When reality steps in their first inclination is to ridicule and demonize it. Then try to legislate against it! G-d help us all!

Anonymous said...

beautifully written

-- spanky

Anonymous said...

When did people become such pussies?

TimO said...

Epic essay. You have outdone yourself, sir.

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