The Gun Anti-Fetish

Would-be gun-grabbers like Sen. Dianne Feinstein and CNN’s Piers Morgan don’t just hate and fear all guns. They fear some scary-looking guns more than others, and keep bringing them up even when not appropriate.

Take America’s most popular rifle. After every horrific mass shooting Feinstein and Morgan call for banning (or at least heavily regulating) these “assault weapons.”

Following the naval yard shooting the other day, Feinstein pronounced, “There are reports the killer was armed with an AR-15, a shotgun and a semiautomatic pistol when he stormed an American military installation in the nation’s capital and took at least 12 innocent lives. This is one more event to add to the litany of massacres that occur when a deranged person or grievance killer is able to obtain multiple weapons — including a military-style assault rifle — and kill many people in a short amount of time. When will enough be enough?”

It turned out that the killer brought only a shotgun to the massacre — a weapon endorsed by our current Vice President, as Jacob Sullum reminds us — and used two handguns acquired during the spree. No AR-15 in evidence.

Sullum also notes that CNN justified Morgan’s post-naval-yard-shooting anti-AR-15 diatribe in an off-hand way, as if facts didn’t matter.

So, what matters?

The taboo. The anti-fetish, the magical thing reviled — the obsession with the scary look of an evil gun, over its actual use.

Why?

For lots of politically-centered people, policy is more about symbolism than anything else. For such folks, talk of principles or about overall crime statistics or unintended effects means nothing. To understand their notions, bring in the anthropologists.

Or the shamans.

This is Common Sense. I’m Paul Jacob.

8 Comments so far ↓

  1. Sep
    19
    9:03
    AM
    2WarAbnVet

    Facts are regarded as pesky things that only get in the way of the lib/socialist narrative.

  2. Sep
    19
    11:06
    AM
    JFB

    AR-15 semi-automatics are the best, or close to the best, defensive rifles presently in existence. That is why we provide them, in the fully automatic version, to our military, for their use, hopefully in defending us.
    Why should the citizen be denied this tool for their personal SELF defense, and the defense of their families?
    A counter-question might be, would there be 12 dead as a result of this attack by a single insane individual if everyone at the yard was trained and encouraged to open carry a defensive weapon, and therefore in a position to respond?
    Indeed would the incident have occurred at all were that true?
    The logic of gun-grabbers and progressive press is as bankrupt as the US Treasury, and for the same reason, delusional foolishness.

  3. Sep
    19
    11:40
    AM
    drrik

    Just can’t get a good AR-15 fueled massacre when you need one.

    An assault weapon will always have the capablility of selective fire, allowing the user to choose between semi-automatic and automatic mode. The public universally views assault weapons as capable of automatic mode, which is virtually never the case for weapons used in shootings, mass or not, in America. A small caliber, clip fed, semiautomatic such as the AR-15 would never be used in a military assault.

    Pandering politicians get hyper over things that are not based in reality, like whether a rifle has a bayonet mount. Not one case ever in America of someone being attacked, let alone killed by a bayonet on a rifle. Flash suppressors, likewise have been none issues in any shootings in America. Black color, collapsible stock, these are things that have never had any demonstrable relavance in the lethality of mass shootings or the logic of the grabber politicians.

    Most of the grabbers obsess over military “style” weapons, that may superfically resemble weapons actually used by the military but that are not actually used by any military anywhere on the planet, because they are not effective in a actual assault.

    Magazine and clip capacity are irrelevent for semi-automatics, as they shoot so slowly that the reload time is nearly the same as for guns without clips. For automatics, real assault weapons, magazine capcity is relavent but a 30 round magazine is next to useless since it would be emptied in less than 3 seconds. A 100 round magazine is more realistic as an effective assualt capability.
    An AR-15 semi-automatic is a great DEFENSIVE weapon, not offensive. An attacking force faces increasing lethality as they get closer, concentrating on one point. For an assault, where the idea is to take lethality to a dispersed group away from the weapon holder, the lethality gets dispersed likewise and the weapon gets less and less effective as the opposing force gets larger and further away. Not what you want for an assault.

  4. Sep
    19
    1:08
    PM
    Paulina West

    Thank you. And now a word from the Nebraska State Constitution.

    I-1. Statement of rights.

    All persons are by nature free and independent, and have certain inherent and inalienable rights; among these are life, liberty, the pursuit of happiness, and the right to keep and bear arms for security or defense of self, family, home, and others, and for lawful common defense, hunting, recreational use, and all other lawful purposes, and such rights shall not be denied or infringed by the state or any subdivision thereof. To secure these rights, and the protection of property, governments are instituted among people, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed.

    Fans of Plato, please note: owning weapons is not a class privilege limited to an extractive, worthless, unproductive aristocracy in our country.

  5. Sep
    19
    5:16
    PM
    MingoV

    “… policy is more about symbolism than anything else…”

    In these types of cases, the symbolism appeals to a general public that heavily relies upon magical thinking in place of logic and reason. Almost all mainstream media reports of mass shootings focus on the guns instead of the killer. Many in the general public adopted that viewpoint. They believe that a gun controls a perpetrator who is forced to go to a specific place, aim the gun at people, and pull the trigger. Naturally, magical thinkers conclude that banning the guns will stop the killings.

  6. Sep
    21
    8:24
    AM
    Pat

    The focus on AR-15 or semi-automatics can be seen as a tactic. Get your foot in the door. Weren’t machine guns banned decades ago? Many equate banning ‘military style’ weapons with machine guns.
    It’s more than symbolism. It’s a ‘one step at a time’ strategy.

  7. Sep
    21
    1:25
    PM
    Karen

    As we all know, the problem is not about guns in America. It is about who wields them & how they are obtained. Most guns that are used in the commission of a crime are stolen & resold. Can’t regulate that. Additionally, the fault in this horrific Naval Yard massacre was SECURITY. The company that performed this man’s security clearance was lax. They failed to pick up his 2 prior arrests for violence. He was able to walk on a Naval base without passing through a metal detector. I can’t pay a traffic ticket in Los Angeles without having my purse searched & being wanded. Again, he had security clearance he should not have had. There are many problems surrounding our undetected, untreated mentally ill in this country. But if you disarm the American people, the only ones with weapons will be government & the criminals. Not a place I want to be.

  8. Sep
    22
    5:09
    PM
    Tree Dee

    So, let me get this straight – this PAPA OSCAR SIERRA was able to kill two armed people, take their handguns, and USE them in his debauchery of murder? Huh? Were they afraid to fight back? Were the rules of engagement that ridiculous? Am I missing something?

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