Mayor Bloomberg leads a group of mayors who demand a plan on gun control. Well, if reducing gun violence is the goal, I suggest a bit of culture control - Mayor Bloomberg and his like-minded supporters can simply refuse to allow their cities to be used as Hollywood backdrops for violent films and televison shows glorifying gun violence.
Yes, that may cost their cities a few dollars and a few jobs. But this is something they could implement next week, rather than waiting for years for the US Congress to do nothing.
FOR THOSE OF YOU SCORING AT HOME: Quentin Tarantino has a new film out celebrating gun violence, but he is an artist so its all good. For those keeping score, let's see if "Django Unchained" can inspire more copycat killings than Tarantino's "Natural Born Killers", another colorful romp celebrating gun violence. Artistically, natch.
This Columbine connection seems topical:
On April 20, 1999, students Eric Harris and Dylan Klebold murdered twelve students and one teacher at Columbine High School near Littleton, Colorado. The massacre ended with both perpetrators committing suicide. It has been confirmed that both Harris and Klebold were fans of Natural Born Killers. Prior to the massacre, they had used the initials 'NBK' as their code. In a journal entry dated, April 10, 1998, Harris wrote "When I go NBK and people say things like "Oh, it was so tragic," or "oh he is crazy!" or "It was so bloody", just because your mommy and daddy told you blood and violence is bad, you think it's a fucking law of nature? Wrong, only science and math are true, everything, and I mean every fucking thing else is Man made. Before I leave this worthless place, I will kill whoever I deem unfit for anything at all, especially life." Harris also referred to April 20 as "the holy April morning of NBK", and in an undated journal entry, Klebold (who was severely depressed) wrote "I'm stuck in humanity. Maybe going NBK w. Eric is the way to break free". During one of the "Basement Tapes" found in Harris and Klebold's homes, the perpetrators mention how Hollywood will want to adapt their life story, and they debate on whether or not Steven Spielberg or Quentin Tarantino (who conceived the story for Natural Born Killers) are appropriate choices to direct the proposed film.
Well. Many tobacco executives are no doubt still puzzling over any possible links between smolong and cancer. But let me say that I try to learn something every day - per Ta Nehisi Coates (in the comments, a link to which I cannot discern), simply holding a gun will cloud my judgment and may make me more prone to violence. Hmm, what might the impact be of a culture soaked in violent movies and video games?
NEVER UNDERESTIMATE THE POWER OF A SOPHISTRY WHOSE TIME HAS COME: Ta Nehisi-Coates runs a guest piece by a fellow who claims he doesn't want to equate slavery with gun ownership and then goes on at great length doing just that.
Let's see, we are asked to think of lobbies and special interests with great political power, economic clout, cultural impact, and (I infer from the slavery connection) a dubious moral foundation, and the onlly parallel people come up with is to the NRA. Please.
There is excellent push-back in the comments, but none of the ardent libs joining in to defend the thesis can think of the military-industrial complex as an example of another candidate for this sort of extended smear. Or the pro-life groups. Or the Drug Warriors, or Big Hollywood, or the pro-choice groups (who talk constantly about how we are one Justice away from losing our abortion rights, with women forced to die in back alleys as a result of the War on Women.) OK, I understand that libs won't identify a parallel to the pro-choice movement, but those others should be easy calls.
No, for purposes of today's Two Minute Hate guns are the new slavery.
Bah. By today's moral standards, slavery cannot be defended. Yet I have seen target shooters win Olympic Gold and we send police officers out with guns, but not slaves.
Hmm, maybe there is some problem with guns because they interfere with the state's monopoly on the legitmate use of force? In this nation, that monopoly does not exist - a private citizen has a right to self-defense in his own home with few limitations. Obviously, the controversial Stand Your Ground laws extend that right to the legitimate use of force outside the home, although some states continue with a Duty to Retreat.