Yesterday, I blogged an article by H. A. Goodman. After recapping the usual anti-gun tripe, Mr. Goodman argued that law-abiding black Americans should open carry firearms to prove to the police that they’re not criminals. Great landing, wrong airport. Law-abiding black Americans should open carry because they have a natural, civil and Constitutional right to keep and bear arms. Just like all Americans, regardless of their race, color, creed or sexual orientation. Here’s another gun control article by a [gay] black American that doesn’t quite make it to the landing strip. Still, it’s worth a read . . .
Why it’s so difficult to solve America’s gun problem can somewhat be explained within 20 seconds of the 17th episode of “The Family Guy’s” eighth season. Brian and Stewie are trapped in a bank vault and after some silly banter, which leads to a ridiculous scuffle, Stewie ends up grabbing a gun and pointing it at Brian:
Brian: Look, Stewie, c’mon you don’t know how to use that thing.
Stewie: Oh really? What if I hold it sideways like a black guy . . .
Since the mid-1990s pantomiming holding a gun sideways has been the default pose struck by the misinformed who want to appear intimidating and/or cool. Each time a gun rights advocate talks about the Second Amendment and hunting, I think about the sheep holding their guns to the side.
In the gun rights world, the word “sheep” refers to unarmed civilians who refuse to take responsibility for their own safety. Here, no. Here, Granderson uses the word “sheep” to refer to gang bangers. Or wannabe gang bangers. In his cnn.com dietribe [sic], LZ Granderson‘s labels people who defend the Second Amendment (and hunting!) as poseurs.
When it comes to the conversation on guns, we must remember one size does not fit all. There are at least two Americas, and one of them is likely populated with folks imitating fictional characters in gangster movies — unaware that, reportedly, film directors instructed actors to hold the prop that way so they could capture the face and the gun in the same frame.
It’s all Hollywood.
The idea that gun rights advocates are all Walter Mitty types dreaming of doing the Dirty Harry on some bad guy is hardly original. You see it all the time in the comments section underneath posts by organizations lobbying for civilian disarmament. *cough* projection *cough* Gun owners refuse to wear the label because it doesn’t fit. Their guns are for defense against criminality and tyranny. And hunting! And fun!
Anyone who believes that gun rights advocates advocate Hollywood-style vigilante justice has spent little to no time researching the subject or, indeed, talking to people on the pro-gun side – patriotic Americans with an excellent grasp of why various types of “gun violence” occur and how to reduce their incidence. Granderson doesn’t want that conversation; it would ruin his “two Americas” (a.k.a., us vs. them) theory of “gun violence.”
Pretending the weekly gun violence that grips places such as Chicago and Baltimore doesn’t run along racial lines is counterproductive. Just as grouping mass school shootings perpetrated by the mentally ill with gang violence is counterproductive . . .
Each time we link an Adam Lanza with FBI statistics about Detroit, we move further from addressing either problem. Those who are truly concerned about the regularly underreported bloodshed in urban America must resist piggybacking the media coverage that swirls around the camera-ready anomalies like Columbine.
True story: “gun violence” does run along racial lines. Whites tend to kill whites, blacks tend to kill blacks. Also true: mass shootings are not the same as gang violence. They are anomalies. But even as Granderson tries to separate “gun violence” into its constituent parts, he just can’t get it together, solution-wise,
Stewie making a joke about holding a handgun sideways has very little if anything to do with background checks or mental health care. But it does highlight the shortfalls of public education and the war on drugs.
It shines a light on whom the National Rifle Association is not advocating for, as no licensed instructor would tell a student to hold the weapon that way.
It sounds like Granderson’s calling for the National Rifle Association to teach gang bangers proper grip, stance and technique. In reality, he’s indulging in a small digression to shore up his progressive credentials, by calling the NRA racist (in his own roundabout sort of way). Again, not an original thought. That said . . .
Granderson’s this close to stating that the gang bangers of Stewie’s imagination (and reality) are the result of a broken public education system and an un-winnable war on drugs. At the same time, psychos need treatment/incarceration. As the Dixie Chicks sang, there’s your trouble. Granderson. Just. Can’t. Get there.
Instead of constantly searching for sweeping laws that approach all gun violence as one in the same, we need to recognize that the comedic bit in episode 17 of the eighth season of “The Family Guy” has nothing to do with Newtown. Until we get there in our talks, all we will ever have is talk.
Landing is a bitch. Granderson can’t get his wheels down on this one because he’s a liberal. If he told the truth about “gun violence” – that it’s not rooted in firearms accessibility or cured by gun control – he’d be out faster than a sumo wrestler trying to beat the throw to first base. Shame. It would be nice to read another Road to Damascus moment in the fight for gun rights. Still, as this article indicates, there is hope.