“I read with some interest Dan Casey’s column about police responding to a distress call that ended up with the police at the wrong address (“Leisurely evening shattered by police,” Oct. 20),” Salem Virginia Doctor Scott Mange writes at roanoke.com. “In his piece, Casey explains the person calling 911 was reporting an assault and said, ‘When the police come, make sure they’re ready to shoot his a** or get shot.’ Obviously someone involved in this assault had a gun . . .
“When the police mistakenly arrived at the wrong address, the homeowners, believing they were about to be victims of a home invasion, grabbed handguns and prepared to defend themselves. It was then the police burst in with guns drawn and took control of a potentially out-of-control situation. Everyone, and I do mean everyone involved, was exceedingly fortunate that no shots were fired. There could have a been a bloodbath of innocents and/or officers.”
Now you and I might see this cock-up as an event that highlights the need for proper, cautious policing. (The adage “fools rush in where angels fear to tread” springs to my mind.) But Doctor Mange sees it as a reason to remove Americans’ gun rights.
This entire situation would have been less volatile if guns were not so available in our country which brings me to my next point.
It seems to me one of the best ways of limiting the sale of guns and driving the gun industry to it’s knees or out of business entirely is for existing business to put pressure on those companies that sell guns and ammunition, most easily by restricting their ability to advertise.
Now I don’t mean impose on their free speech rights which would be affected if the government imposed a ban on them advertising but this issue is completely bypassed by encouraging advertisers to stop taking their money. Private enterprises such as Lamar billboards, the Roanoke Times, etc. are not constrained by the First Amendment the same way our government is.
If we can convince billboard owners, newspapers owners and others to stop advertising for companies that sell or trade in guns, it would make it more difficult for people to buy and sell guns making them less valuable. People would have to rely on those they know in order to find local sellers.
But let’s not stop at just the billboard and newspaper companies. Let’s ask Google to block any search results for gun stores. Let’s ask UPS and Fedex to stop entirely all pick-up and drop-off services to gun stores. Let’s ask local merchants to put up those signs on their doors letting customers know guns are not welcome inside and refuse to serve those that are openly carrying weapons. Let’s ask the local pizza shops to refuse any orders that require delivery to a gun store . . .
As a last resort we should ask our local governments to refuse business permits and revoke the licenses of those companies that sell or resell guns and ammo.
It’s odd that Dr. Mange doesn’t realize that the mainstream media have been “blacklisting” the gun industry for decades. When was the last time you saw an ad for a firearm on a major TV network or a non-gun magazine (those things with pages)? How about never. (Just ask Daniel Defense.)
It’s an issue we face here at TTAG, where we’d like to make an ad-based appeal for gun muggles’ eyeballs. A billboard at La Guardia airport? Go sing, they said. Google Ad Words? Nope. How about TTAG sponsorship of an NPR radio program? Ha! (A denial worthy of a post all on its own.)
As for “asking” UPS and FedEx to stop delivering firearms, that’s just way out there. But, sadly, not impossible to imagine — especially if the presidential election had gone the other way and Ms. Clinton somehow managed to repeal the Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act.
But the most revealing of Dr. Mange’s proposals: stop pizza deliveries to gun stores.
Given the number of OFWG’s manning the counters at local gun stores, the idea isn’t without some merit. You know, from a dietary perspective. From any other perspective, the LGS pie ban is petty and vindictive. Ironically enough, it’s the flip side to the ruling forcing a religious bakery to bake a cake for a gay wedding.
As a last resort, to protect our gun rights, gun rights advocates should take a page out of Dr. Mange’s playbook (which I call Dr. Mangelove or How I Learned To Stop Worrying and Demonize Gun Owners). Anytime someone threatens our gun rights, we should shout “No pizza for you!” Or something like that.