I was recently having an online discussion (I have no idea what you really call commenting on facebook) with some old Army buddies. One stated that, while she supported the 2nd Amendment, something should be done to limit access to assault weapons. Another responded that a person does not support the 2nd Amendment if he advocates ANY curtailment of ANY access to ANY weaponry.
Having recently returned from an ungulate-killing expedition involving high-power rifles, I though on this for a moment. I made what I consider to be a rather uncontroversial claim:
The only employment of an assault weapon that can’t be accomplished much better by a standard high-power rifle is the indiscriminate murder of a large number of people in a short period of time.
I then updated my status with a holiday greeting:
Let us not forget that this is the time to commemorate the birth of our Lord, the Creator, 370 years ago tomorrow. Creator of calculus, that is. Merry Newtonmas!
Yet, surprisingly, I have not been unfriended by anyone thus far. The day is young.
but I digress…
What I find odd is that, though each massacre is different, the talking points trotted out by defenders of easy access to assault weapons never change. Even as the execrable NRA mouthpiece Wayne LaPierre was recycling his standard stump speech, several people, including police officers were shot. Wayne LaPierre’s call for “good guys with guns” failed the simultaneous reality test. But it really doesn’t matter. Right wing loons enjoy a particularly strong resilience to the influence of reality.