Conservative Meme is Conservative


Sort of a double dose of douchebaggery in this meme, isn’t there?

First we have the illegal vs undocumented debate, which generally applies not to guns but to immigrants. Earlier this year the Associated Press, responding to pressure from immigration rights advocates and Latino news outlets, decided to drop the term “illegal immigrant” from its style guide. A person’s actions are illegal, goes the argument, not the person himself. Some media agencies have decided to use the word undocumented in lieu of illegal (although the AP is eschewing that word as well). The decision raised the ire of many conservatives (but what doesn’t anger conservatives?), who immediately took to Photoshop to create memes about how political correctness is destroying our country.

Yes, friends, you read that correctly: conservatives are frothing at the mouth because one group of people has opted not to use language that might be construed as offensive by another group of people. The very nerve.

Anyway, this talented memer manages to link two completely unrelated topics that are nevertheless equally offensive to conservatives everywhere – thereby forcing me to discuss those same unrelated topics in one post. Do you have any idea how difficult it is to craft a witty segue from the topic of immigration to the topic of gun control?

And speaking of gun control (Nailed it!), how scary are you if you imply that you intend to keep your death arsenal hidden from the government? Oh, that’s right…you need your AR 15 so you can overthrow that very same government, right? Because…um…remind me why you need to overthrow the government again? Let me guess: it’s because you live under an oppressive totalitarian regime, right? A regime whose iron grip on the population is so complete that… people like you were able to get your hands on assault rifles in the first place. A regime whose control is so thorough that it… allows the National Rifle Association to continue to operate within its borders even through that organization successfully opposes laws that might cause you to lose your beloved assault phallus. Yeah…real tough times we’re living in.

Reality called, sweetie. It misses you.

People Kill People…With Guns

Guns Dont Kill People

Whenever somebody revives the NRA chestnut “Guns don’t kill people, people do”, I’m reminded of a bit by comedian Eddie Izzard from 1999.

And this is still relevant fourteen years later!

Anyway, it’s funny that Donald K Martin of Windsor Locks noticed that his shotgun had no legs, but failed to notice that it had no arms, hands, or fingers to brace, aim, and fire itself.

Nobody thinks that a gun will kill people when left to itself (unless that gun is actually Megatron in disguise). Mr Martin, in a daft attempt to make gun-control proponents look foolish, has constructed a classic straw man fallacy: misconstrue your opponents’ argument as something impossibly silly, then trash the ridiculous argument your opponent didn’t actually make.

If Mr Martin (or anybody else) is interested in hearing the truth about what gun-control proponents want (instead of the scary lies promulgated by the NRA), here it is: reasonable regulation. That’s all. Nobody’s taking away your lazy shotgun, Mr Martin. We just want to restrict you from selling it to an anonymous customer under a bridge in the shady part of town. We want to create a world in which you cannot lay hands on a military-grade assault weapon unless you actually happen to be in the military. We want to make people safer, including you.

A little bit of common sense on your part wouldn’t hurt either, Mr Martin.

I came across a bunch of anti-evolution memes while wandering aimlessly online. Okay, okay, I was specifically searching for them. In any case, this week will be Stupid Bad Creationist Meme Week, starting tomorrow. Tell all your friends.

We Don’t Need No Guns In Education

Armed Teachers

I think the more appropriate question is: Which of these signs will invite another tragedy?

Never underestimate the rabidity of gun enthusiasts. The NRA (No Regulations Anywhere) is so terrified of even one iota of reasonable gun control that they have promulgated the idea that our schools would somehow be safer if teachers, principals, and presumably custodians were all packing heat.

What kind of backwards nonsense is that?

Let’s imagine some scenarios that might play out in a world where teachers carry gats:

  1. In the gun lovers’ favorite fantasy, a would-be shooter draws his weapon on the front steps of the school he intends to terrorize, and is promptly turned into something resembling salsa by an answering hail of bullets. The swift and violent response sends a message; other potential attackers reconsider their actions (because they’re all very rational people).
  2. Or…an enterprising student with basic lock-picking knowledge breaks into a teacher’s classroom while the teacher is out making copies, and helps himself to the weapon and ammunition. In this scenario, we have unwittingly armed one of the people we’re trying to protect ourselves against. The student doesn’t go on a rampage (at least, not in the school) but an investigation must now be conducted, spending taxpayer money to solve a crime that need never have happened.
  3. Or…same scenario as before, except this time the student does go on a rampage. He’ll be gunned down eventually, but how many people will he drop before somebody has the presence of mind to unlock their own gun cabinet, load their weapon, and fire on the attacker?
  4. Or…if the teacher is actually carrying the weapon on his person, a passing student might make a grab for it, resulting in somebody getting dead.
  5. Or…a teacher with anger management issues has finally had enough of Billy talking in class.
  6. Or…a teacher or administrator who has to break up a fight between two students acts too hastily and pulls his gun, resulting in mob panic and injuring many more people than would otherwise have been hurt. Teachers and administrators usually don’t have the same level of training as police officers and soldiers, so it might be more difficult for them to determine when the threat of deadly force is appropriate and when it isn’t.

Along with these (in my opinion) inevitable tragedies, you also get the elevated risk of accidental gun deaths. All of these deaths could be prevented (along with the mass shootings themselves) by making guns harder to get. Arming an entire school would make the school more dangerous, not less so. It’s a terrible, terrible idea. The solution to gun violence is not to throw more guns at the problem.

Since rationality dictates that any jerk suggesting that we arm teachers should be made to wear a chicken suit and a dunce cap for the rest of the day, and since I don’t see any dunce-capped man-sized chickens strolling around, we may conclude that the NRA’s suggestion is inherently irrational. This should come as no surprise: the NRA and its supporters are not driven by logic and rationality; they are driven by an unstable mixture of anti-government paranoia and a desire to hold on to their private arsenal of mini-WMDs. They won’t admit this, of course, but they’re as transparent as the windows of a schoolhouse. When you are so in love with guns that you’d rather see teachers, principals, and children needlessly endangered than submit to a little bit of reasonable regulation, it’s time to admit that you’re no longer firmly rooted in reality.