Tuesday, January 11, 2011

The Loughne Gunman

Every now and then, an event happens that makes us question gun control. The saying might go that guns don't kill people, people kill people. But guns sure help. Yelling "BANG!" at people you don't like doesn't accomplish much.

But something to remember, highly publicized news events are highly publicized because they're rare. Now, I don't like guns. I've never fired a handgun. I've regrettably fired a riffle when I was a little kid, only because my grandfather made me--something that still bothers me. I don't want anything to do with guns. If I served in the military, I would refuse to carry them. I don't like the idea of something that can so easily remove a person from existence. This makes me sound like a peace loving hippy. I'm not. Although I don't like guns and would never own one, I don't like the idea of taking them away from responsible people that do like them. All more gun restrictions will do is make it harder for responsible people to own guns. Criminals aren't following the rules in the first place. As sad as this event is, passing populist laws based solely on infrequent(even highly publicized ones) is not good policy.

First off, let's talk about this kid that shot the judge, congresswoman, nine year old girl, and the others. He was a lefty--smoked pot regularly, quoted from Mien Kumpf and the Communist Manifesto. He was also an Atheist--one of his only redeeming qualities. But my point here, he was definitely not inspired by Sarah Palin or the Tea Party. That didn't stop a lot of idiots on the left from instantly coming to that conclusion.

The more responsible news sources on the Left(along with everyone else) reported that he was just crazy and his political ideologies are immaterial towards finding some kind of motive. Good. Had that not been the case, I wonder if that would have changed things. By that, I mean, let's say the guy instead quoted from right wing sources, would the Huffington Post say he was just crazy and that's all there was to it, or would they have made a case of how extreme rightwing zealotry leads people to violence as Nancy Pelosi has famously said of the Tea Party?

Reading about the glory of Socialism in Mien Kumpf, reading the glory of Communism in Karl Marx's book, or glory of... well, sitting around smoking pot might be something Liberals might do, but it doesn't make you a deranged killer. Neither does wanting smaller government and people to take more responsibility over their own lives, but for me to point out that Nancy Pelosi is simply an idiot for suggesting otherwise is like trying to make the argument that water is wet. Having actually been to a Tea Party rally, I can say I haven't seen such a large collection of peaceful and friendly people in my life.

From what I've read about the Congresswoman is that she's a Conservative Democrat with a history of working with Republicans in her Conservative district. She voted against re-appointing Nancy Pelosi--something which greatly angered many Liberals. But again, as much as I don't like most Liberals, the fact that this lunatic may have been motivated to try and kill the Congresswoman based on this fact is just random and does not reflect on what Liberals are like. He's no different from all the other crazy people that have shot politicians and celebrities. Crazy people exist in all parties and all religions.

Yeah, I'm making a political argument at the same time I'm saying this shouldn't be political. Kind of hypocritical of me. The point I'm trying to make here really is what I've also heard people on the left, like John Stewart, saying: that we should tone down the rhetoric and stop finding reasons to blame "the otherside" for things that doesn't really have anything to do with their policies.

And although as a Republican, I probably wouldn't have voted for the Congresswoman, she sounds like a good person to me. It is my hope she makes a full recovery and bravely continues to serve her constituents in her district, including townhall meetings and other public settings.

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