Masochistic TTAG Reader Banters with Daily Banter’s Oliver Willis

Oliver Willis (courtesy breitbart.com)

TTAG reader Andrew Egilmez had a read of Oliver Willis’ article The Perverse Reality of Modern Gun Culture. The dailybanter.com columnist lauded by the Boston Globe (“When Oliver Willis talks, the blogosphere cares”) reckons “The gun culture is all about protecting your home from mysterious, dark figures that are always a second away from attacking/raping you and your family.” Dark figures. Geddit? Our man Egilmez does. He emailed the following literary conversation with Mr. Willis, who starts his anti-gun agitprop thusly . . .

I will concede that the left has been on the losing side of the battle over guns for some time.

Yaaaay! Okay, sorry, had to get that out of the way . . .

We should do everything we can to limit the amount of innocent people killed by guns.

Sounds like he’s against innocent people dying. Let’s hold onto this. I’ll get back to it.

It doesn’t guarantee the right to every killing implement under the sun.

Hello, Mr. Strawman, how are you today?

When the Founders wrote the Second Amendment they did so in a world that couldn’t even envision a machine gun . . .

Man, if only there was some way to easily research the history of machine guns. Some way to look up their first appearance in US history and see how it coincided with the Second Amendment. WHOOPS!

And why even mention machine guns?  How many people are killed by a machine gun every year?  It couldn’t have been a poorly thought out criticism of the Second Amendment?  “SEE, they couldn’t have thought of this, so let’s disregard any intention they had for creating the amendment.”

Before Sandy Hook, President Obama and Congressional Democrats were not doing anything about guns. Democrats hadn’t done anything for almost 20 years on the issue.

Oh well, nothing got passed, so I’m sure they never once talked about it (::cough 2004 Democratic National Platform for America Pg 18cough::).  Also, The city of Aurora, CO had no comment.

It’s the sort of thing that was likely in George Zimmerman’s mind the night he murdered Trayvon Martin.

Away with you, silly judicial system! Your verdicts mean nothing to me!

Yes, other things can kill you – cars, household accidents, etc. — but unlike a gun, none of those things is designed to kill. A gun is.

Getting back to my earlier comment, sure, more innocent people are killed by “other things” (significantly more, obviously) BUT GUNS ARE DESIGNED TO KILL. Sorry innocent people killed by other things, Mr. Willis would care more if it was a gun versus a swimming pool.

I love the casual sentence to completely cast aside the fact that innocent people die in far greater numbers by other objects.  I’m pretty sure I half assed a few college papers using this method.  I’m also pretty sure every professor would highlight that sentence and go “Uh…expand on this?”

Guns are implements of killing, if we are to have them as part of our society — and yes, we have — we should do what we can to limit their capacity to kill the innocent while preserving a Constitutional right to possess them. If that steps on the toes of the conspiracy obsessed or a group of people who believe false statistics, oh well.

I have to be a masochist to keep reading this stuff.  There can be no other explanation. [ED: join the club]

comments

  1. avatar General Zod says:

    Know how to keep guns from killing the innocent? DON’T POINT ONE AT AN INNOCENT PERSON. Easy enough.

    Now, how do we keep swimming pools from killing the innocent?

    1. avatar Mark N. says:

      concrete.

    2. avatar James R says:

      Every time someone breaks out the “if it could save one child’s life” argument, I dramatically reply “WHY ARENT WE HIRING MORE LIFEGUARDS?!?!”

    3. avatar JasonM says:

      1. All pools are always filled with water.
      2. Never let anything in the pool you’re not willing to destroy.
      3. Keep your speedo off until you’re ready to cannonball.
      4. Be sure of what’s under the diving board and beyond it.

      1. avatar Karina says:

        I actually want this to be printed out on a pool safety sign.

  2. avatar M J Johnson says:

    So tempted to engage…

  3. avatar Mediocrates says:

    should I start caring now? nope? didn’t think so….

  4. avatar Michael C says:

    I thought his side was the ones who believed their false statistics. TTAG debunks them pretty thoroughly.

    1. avatar Will says:

      Since they can’t really refute the stats themselves that go against their position, the stats MUST be false. (in their eyes.) Forget that they can’t come up with statistics that can be backed up that counter the truth by reputable sources all can agree upon… it’s “the man behind the curtain,” and “we” are supposed to ignore it because of their illusions and delusions.

  5. avatar Roll says:

    My guns have never killed a person. Paper plates and balloons yes, but a person? Never.

    This is one of those people that(incorrectly) equate “gun” with “automatic death”. The mere sight of a gun will cause you to die in a grotesque manner, like when the Nazi’s opened the Ark in Indiana Jones; your skin to melt, your blood will burst into flames and you’ll have diarrhea at inappropriate times.

    The capacity to kill is not dictated by the gun/knife/blunt object but the person who is wielding it and their intent, Mr. Willis has yet to understand this. Anything and I mean ANYTHING can be used as a weapon or to kill someone; all the user needs is the will to use it.

    1. avatar Publius says:

      Seeing how I have a variety of old military guns, I can’t say with certainty that my guns have never killed anyone. All I can say is that they have never killed anyone while I have owned them.

      1. avatar William Burke says:

        And should you need to, you probably have better tools than them for the job.

      2. avatar Sixpack70 says:

        I have to claim this also. I have no clue as to my milsurps history and never will. They will most likely never be used in combat or to shoot another person during the rest of their existence.

  6. avatar peirsonb says:

    I will concede that the left has been on the losing side of the battle over guns for some time.

    The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over while expecting a different result.

  7. avatar Rabbi says:

    My guns were not designed to kill, they were designed to live.

  8. avatar Jack says:

    We should throw away the First Amendment because the Founders never envisioned blogs.

    1. avatar ChrisM says:

      I tired to leave this comment on that story, but it didn’t get posted. Don’t know if it was moderated, or if it was some setting on my browser that wouldn’t play ball with their website.

      “When the Founders wrote the Second Amendment they did so in a world that
      couldn’t even envision a machine gun, let alone the weapons easily
      available today”

      So by that reasoning, the first amendment doesn’t apply to the internet, tv, radio, movies, etc.?

  9. Jack wins the Internet today.

  10. avatar Charles says:

    General Zod,

    What is funny is that a number of states that are popular for swimming pools and are popular havens for liberals have passed escalating laws with respect towards safety requirements that are required in the permitting processing to get a swimming pool. All because common sense went out the window, so it started with fencing, then added child resistant gates and now child resistance locks on gates and fencing that can’t be scaled (based on my relatives issues with building an pool in PA). There was no grandfather in after this last round of laws were passed and code enforcement officers went out like gang busters raking in the cash from the violators. In the long run these rules haven’t done much to have the death rate from children in swimming pools hit 0, all they have done is triple the price of pools and made it such a regulatory burden that the industry is dying.

    1. avatar uncommon_sense says:

      “… all they have done is triple the price of pools and made it such a regulatory burden that the industry is dying.”

      And that was their plan all along. Big Brother knew that they could not outright ban pools so they did the next best thing: make owning a pool so onerous and expensive that most people decide not to have pools.

      1. avatar Jus Bill says:

        I don’t think that was their plan at all. I think their plan was to collect as much money as they could, and when that dried up, move on to the next manufactured crisis. Then rinse and repeat until retirement.

  11. avatar joe says:

    Who cares what this bloviating fuck thinks?

  12. avatar cubby123 says:

    300 MILLION GUNS IN AMERICA all designed to kill, well……I guess we’re doomed then.

    1. avatar Larry says:

      I got money says the actual number is way past 800 million, and really happy that nobody knows.

  13. avatar RockOnHellChild says:

    This piece was all over the map, but he touched on all the same points that I’ve heard repeated over and over.

    Machine guns. Guns are designed to kill. Paranoia. George Zimmerman. The NRA is bad. Blah, blah, blah.

    Same stuff, different guy.

    But, I do agree with one part…

    “I don’t care if the initiatives I support have 1% support or 99% support.”

    I don’t care what any politician, poll, study, or columnist says, or how much support I have, or do not have, my rights aren’t for sale.

  14. avatar Jake Tallman says:

    I always get a kick out of the argument that our founders never intended for us to have semi-automatic weapons, or handguns, or whatever. On the contrary, the founders envisioned that the people should have access to the same weapons as the government. They would be appalled to see that machine guns are so heavily restricted, while the government has unfettered access to every piece of hardware on the planet.

    And of course, the always-funny, inherently paradoxical position of the antis. “Stop being paranoid. Crime doesn’t happen, which is why you don’t need guns, even though we have enough crime for us to demand gun control to end the blood running in the streets”.

    1. avatar bontai Joe says:

      This is EXACTLY right! The second Amendment was designed so that every citizen could own weapons EQUAL to what the army of the day was using so that would insure that the government would not be able to overpower the citizens with superior firepower.

    2. avatar Gene says:

      Our Founding Fathers were keenly aware of the Puckle gun and it’s implications. Saying they couldn’t envision semi or fully auto firearms is a fallacy.

  15. avatar William Burke says:

    Thanks for the machine gun link. I don’t doubt the Revolutionary side would have been happy to use them against the Redcoats, if they could have been mass-produced at a reasonable cost.

    Very funny article; I like your style, and await more articles from you. PLEASE.

    1. avatar Jus Bill says:

      Colonial era machine gun = grape shot; chain shot; various metallic objects loaded in the muzzle; etc.

      1. avatar Ardent says:

        In a heavily industrialized place like the US, near single use ‘cannon’ or directional mines are so cheaply and easily built that one would expect millions to be used in any protracted war involving the civilian population. It’s the poor mans answer to automatic weapons.

    2. avatar Drew says:

      Much appreciated.

  16. “Yes, other things can kill you – cars, household accidents, etc. — but unlike a gun, none of those things is designed to kill. A gun is.”

    This is a favorite of the antis. How about a list of other things that ARE designed to kill:

    Disinfectant
    Rat poison
    Hunting knives
    Pesticides
    Antibiotics
    Fungicides
    Bleach
    Herbicides

    Can anyone think of any others?

    Note that not a single one of these other items that are designed to kill are regulated in any way similar to firearms.

    1. avatar Jus Bill says:

      Bumpers on cars
      Sharp edges and projections in/on cars (e.g., rear view mirrors)

  17. avatar CentralIL says:

    “The idea that we need to arm ourselves against our own government is the worst sort of right wing paranoia.”

    Mr Willis certainly has a lot of faith in the eternal benevolence of governments. One wonders how familiar he is with 20th century history.

    1. avatar Maineuh says:

      He’s not alone, either. A bulk of these people just don’t have the intellectual reach to imagine a time when the government might not be our friends. And if they can imagine it, they just resort to the old canard that a bunch of civilian gun owners are no match for the military. I really think many of them reach the limits of their imaginations and that’s that.

      1. avatar Paul says:

        Wow. This Oliver Willis guy is quite the constitutional scholar. Right-wing paranoia? Maybe someday he’ll stumble upon the name Thomas Jefferson.

        “What country can preserve its liberties if its rulers are not warned from time to time that their people preserve the spirit of resistance? Let them take arms.” 


        If Willis ever stumbles upon documents called the Federalist Papers, which all liberals should read and attempt to understand before writing such uneducated drivel, he’ll also be exposed to Alexander Hamilton.

        “If the representatives of the people betray their constituents, there is then no recourse left but in the exertion of that original right of self-defense which is paramount to all positive forms of government…”

        Hamilton and Jefferson were as different politically as you could get. Hamilton was a Federalist who supported a strong central government. Jefferson was a Democratic-Republican who favored states rights.

        Yet now you tell me both Hamilton and Jefferson suffered from right-wing paranoia? Brilliant! Simply Brilliant!

  18. avatar Mina says:

    I very much enjoyed reading his statement on Twitter last week that the reason I have guns and train with them to protect myself is because the gun lobby has convinced me (white woman) to be terrified that I will be raped by a huge black man.

    *his exact words!!*

    yet, we’re the racists.

    1. avatar Another Robert says:

      I actually left a comment on his article here, referenced that tweet. I called him a liar and defied him to prove me wrong. Probably not worth the effort, tho. The article was dated on the 26th, there were other comments from that date up til today–but for all that, mine was number 33. He ain’t exactly drawing herds of readers.

  19. avatar Maineuh says:

    The hump lost me long before that “Trayvon was murdered” business. This dude really isn’t worthy of our time.

  20. avatar Maineuh says:

    The anti-gun crowd got pretty well pounded in the comment section. As usual.

  21. avatar Jus Bill says:

    Oliver WHO?

    “When Oliver Willis talks, the blogosphere cares.” Well, at least his mother cares. Maybe. THIS corner of the blogosphere doesn’t.

    I think he may have a revelatory moment if he ever rides public transportation in the wee small hours.

  22. avatar JAS says:

    “And why even mention machine guns? How many people are killed by a machine gun every year? ”

    Well, if you take Hollywood movies into the count who knows. Thousands a year? That’s what these people base their fears on – Hollywood. They DO NOT know firearms, stats, etc.

    I’ve been shooting since I was six. In 54 years I haven’t shot anyone. I’m sure most all of the people of the gun who have not been in the military can make the same claim.

    In short, lawful people of the gun are probably the safest people WITH A GUN statistically.

  23. avatar Larry says:

    I’m sure most all of the people who HAVE been in the military can make the same claim. I love all vets, but the vast majority never saw armed combat, even our wounded recently have been bombed, not shot in combat.

    I’m not one, BTW, have shot many, although not with normal guns.

  24. avatar rlc2 says:

    Oliver has been pretty much irrelevant since about 2004 or so, except in the loony-left echo-chamber in places like Kos Kids or Democratic Underground.

    Trying to educate prog-tards at the Willis-Troll level is hopeless.
    Reminds me of the old farmer saying-

    Don’t try to teach a pig to dance.
    Pigs cant dance, and all you are gonna do is get covered in pig-$hit
    and piss off the pig.

  25. avatar BDub says:

    Did this guy even graduate college – his reasoning skills are piss poor?

  26. avatar Karlan says:

    Which is more sad:
    *Something designed to kill which takes out 11,000 people a year (firearms)
    OR
    *Something designed to help us which kills 32,000 people a year (vehicles)

    While I play devil’s advocate a little, I do wish I could throw “innocent” people out of this calculation.
    Guns deaths would probably be below 2,000 people. However, there is no real way to know.

    The fact of the matter is life is fragile, people die all the time. Its a sad fact of life. Live your
    life righteously, do good, try not to be an asshole, and just let people have the right to defend themselves!

    Lets solve the root causes of things, we can pretty much assume that many firearms deaths are somehow related to money; Of course the aristocrats and fat cats would rather band-aid the issue rather than face the fact we kill each other for monopoly money.

    I’m not religious (perse, or maybe at all, I go back and forth), however the church historically served as an excellent “catch-all” for these disenfranchised people. Its unfortunate the church makes so many mistakes combined with the fact that some left wingers think the idea of religion is dumb (its not, its serves as a framework for civilization and should be respected)

    Sources: Wikipedia, 2011

  27. avatar tdiinva says:

    When the Constitution was written they couldn’t imagine the breech loading rifle. Civilians were using Sharps Breech loaders before the military

    When the Constitution was written they couldn’t imagine repeating rifles. Repeaters were in general use by civilians before the US Army had them in large numbers.

    When the Constitution was written they couldn’t imagine auto loading rifles. Autoloaders were in general use by civilians long before they were used by the US military.

  28. avatar Drew says:

    Gah, Robert, only my grandmother calls me Andrew.

    And thanks for posting this. As a relative newcomer to guns, I look forward to submitting more to TTAG (will try and avoid obvious low hanging fruit such as articles like this in the future).

  29. avatar Dave says:

    “False statistics”… LOL..

    This is the way the left discredits ACTUAL statistics. They won’t even discuss stats. They say they are “false” and yell “BUSH!”.

    This is why we need to get rid of liberals. They are diseased and infect too many others, making them unable to understand how FACTS are different from opinions.

  30. avatar SpeleoFool says:

    Guns are implements of killing, if we are to have them as part of our society — and yes, we have — we should do what we can to limit their capacity to kill the innocent while preserving a Constitutional right to possess them.

    Huh, you know that actually aligns really well with my own attitude. The key observation being that the phenomenon of a “gun” killing an innocent really begins with a decision firing in the brain of the person holding it.

    So, education (like making the 4 rules and other gun facts, like their mechanics, universally taught in school) is a good strategy to guard against people behaving irresponsibly or treating firearms with a cavalier attitude. If everyone recognized safe gun handling practices we would naturally increase awareness of people behaving suspiciously or unsafely.

    However, education alone cannot address the problem of those who simply do not care for the goodwill of others and would harm innocents for their own gains or pleasures. How do you stop someone like that? By stopping them. With force. And the more people who are willing to employ force against evil and equipped and prepared / trained to do so, the safer will will all be. Fans of “protecting the innocent” would do well to educate themselves about the realities of firearms and stop confusing the willingness of a gun owner to use deadly force with the desire to do so.

  31. avatar 2hotel9 says:

    I thought Ollie died from an OD a few years ago? So, he is still spewing leftarded stupidity? Wow, that is my amazed face.

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