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What follows is essentially a conversation I heard between 2 gun-owners in North Texas about the NRA's new commercial, their opinions on Obama's recent policy statement on gun regulation, and most of all: how they feel about their guns.

But first... context!

I work as a disability advocate in California; however, my work sent me to Texas to cover some recent slack in Tyler, Abilene, and Paris, with a week-long of traveling and a spate of hearings with some Very Confused Republican Social Security Disability Benefits Applicants.

Anyways, post-hearing, I'm in a small conference room at the Paris, Texas, Office of Disability Adjudication and Review (ODAR) filling out some paperwork before making the drive back to my Dallas hotel room. In progress, I hear the two Social Security guards talking in low, hushed voices, as if they were afraid of speaking too loud but simultaneously apathetic to anyone's criticism.

1: "... So now I've got this AR that I don't trust because I haven't fired it before buying."
2: "That's a shame."
1: "But oh well, I've got two 30-round mags coming in that I ordered online. Probably the last I'll be able to buy 'em!"
2: "Well, did you see that new NRA commercial?"
1: "Yeah."
2: "There was this guy on Fox, saying that it was disgraceful and immoral that they were attacking the President's kids."
1: "Pssh!"
2: "Well, y'know the NRA guy said that it wasn't about Obama. And I'm thinking, exactly! It was about all those elitists, those representatives and politicians whose kids have armed security at their rich schools."
1: "But, of course, they'll try to turn it around. Try to pick it apart."
2: "Of course. But I don't care what your name is, if you're named Obama or Biden or Smith. You shouldn't be able to have armed guards on your kids and then say that mine shouldn't."
1: "Yep, but, of course, they'd try to pick it apart. Make it look worse than it is."
2: "Yeah. Y'know, I saw this YouTube video from this guy -- and I guess he did the same thing I did -- he left his AR by the door, two full mags right next to it, left the door open just a crack and left the camera recording. Then he says, 'well, my gun didn't go on any rampage!' Same thing I did. And my gun didn't go on any rampage!"
1: "Exactly, and that's what these politicians don't understand. Criminals don't care about the laws. They'll do it all anyways."
2: "Yeap, and meanwhile ordinary folks ain't got nothing to protect themselves with."
1: "Lord help us then..."

The conversation cuts off there, as the second guard goes back to his post by the front door. As I walk out, pretending like I heard nothing, I say my goodbyes politely and friendly as you please. But inside my stomach is lead and my head full of fire, just BEGGING to say something smart at their ignorance.

What's sad is that these two guys were quite nice and decent to me the few hours I was there. Chatty, making fine conversation. But in the privacy of their own circle... out comes the idiocy.

Couple of points they missed:

1. The NRA commercial is disgusting because it singled out Obama, by name, (and his kids) for being supposed "hypocrites" because he let his daughter be guarded by Secret Service and therefore apparently doesn't care about the kids of regular Americans. The presumption has no evidence other than that all president's families receive Secret Service protection. Why? For the same reason as the president: to prevent hostage taking and assassination attempts and all other manner of Bad Stuff that happens to people who are seen as targets.

2. Why the HELL do you need two 30-round magazines for your AR? What the fuck are you shooting at that requires 60 bullets to fucking kill? Also, why do you have an Assault Rifle (hence the AR) in the first place? Either you have a handgun for self-defense, or a rifle for hunting. But an assault rifle? That's a weapon used only for one thing: to kill people. You sir, scare me.

3. You said criminals don't care about laws, right? So then how do you believe that armed guards at schools would stop gun violence? They certainly didn't at Columbine, despite the officer's best efforts. Same for Virginia Tech and Taft Union High School. But regardless, I find it funny you'd want to add more guns to a situation filled with innocent bystanders, rather than keep guns out of the hands of the criminals in the first place.

4. The guns used in nearly every major shooting massacre? All legally obtained. Guess killers don't need to steal or buy guns illegally when they're so easy to get already, right? Wrong. Gun regulation would significantly reduce these shootings because then LESS (not more) crazy/evil people would not have easy access to firearms.

5. Most importantly, your scenario about your gun not going off by itself to rampage is completely fucking idiotic. True, guns don't kill people. But you know what? They sure as hell make it a lot easier! When was the last time we saw a massacre done with a pocket-knife? .... Exactly. Also, sure, this one time nobody stole your improperly stowed gun, but, in the future, PLEASE DON'T BE AN IDIOT TO MAKE A POINT! Someone could have very easily stolen your gun and used it to kill a bunch of people. And you would've probably gone to prison, asshole.

Anyways! Now that I know the inner-workings of idiotic gun-nuts, I feel more passionate than ever to do my part to stem gun violence through reasonable gun regulation and law enforcement. But in the meantime, hopefully the contents of this conversation make the rounds and convince people to do something too.

Cheers.

Originally posted to Zek J. Evets on Thu Jan 17, 2013 at 04:23 PM PST.

Also republished by Repeal or Amend the Second Amendment (RASA).

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Comment Preferences

  •  Tip Jar (19+ / 0-)

    "When facts are reported, they deny the value of evidence; when the evidence is produced, they declare it inconclusive." -- Augustine, in The City of God.

    by Zek J Evets on Thu Jan 17, 2013 at 04:23:46 PM PST

  •  I'm really glad OFA is getting involved. (4+ / 0-)

    I got three emails today asking me to get involved.  Am I going to?  You betcha!

    Cats are better than therapy, and I'm a therapist.

    by Smoh on Thu Jan 17, 2013 at 04:36:24 PM PST

  •  Counter facts (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    BlackSheep1, slothlax

    "AR" comes from the original company which made the AR series, Armalite. It has been applied to all kinds of guns, including bolt action rifles, and also handguns and shotguns. It could stand for assault rifle, of course, but in this case it doesn't.

    You don't NEED a 30 round mag, unless you are either planning to shoot up a joint or you are lazy and want to get more practice and less mag switching done at the range. I have an AK (stands for its name in Russian- avtomat kalashnikova, not "assault knife" or whatever, lol) which I shoot at paper targets for the fun of it. I find it's more convenient to shoot my SKS with its 10 round mag and stripper-clip loading system though. To tell you the truth, I got those two because they were fairly cheap at the time. It actually makes me feel like an amateur (which I am) carrying one of them to a range where there are actual hunters sighting in their rifles for a hunt. Besides, theirs usually make a bigger BOOM, and they're usually on the 200 or 400 yard parts of the range and need sighting scopes to see what they're doing. I'm usually shooting at 25 or 50 yards or so.

    I'd be perfectly happy with a 10 rd limit to the AK, I do have one such mag for it. I'd also be happy to give both of those rifles up if need be, they're just a hobby to me. I have discovered another use for them that you don't mention: I don't need to kill anything with them, they're just fine shooting at paper targets.

    That's what's in my mind, if it gives you any comfort. We assault weapon owners are not all crazy, to a lot of us it's just a hobby.

    Now, one other thing. Mine can't actually be assault rifles, because when I bought them, legally, around 2000, assault rifles were banned, you couldn't buy one.

    Moderation in most things.

    by billmosby on Thu Jan 17, 2013 at 04:43:50 PM PST

  •  In English the saying goes "ignorance is bliss," (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    tardis10, Timaeus, Sandino, splashy

    but I think in a case like this the Spanish "ignorance is bold (la ignorancia es atrevida)" is much more appropriate.

    Thanks for the diary.  Sadly I have a few friends that email me BS like the one discussed by the guards, and we even have some here in our midst that make similar comments.

    Then they came for me - and by that time there was nobody left to speak up.

    by DefendOurConstitution on Thu Jan 17, 2013 at 04:45:17 PM PST

  •  I'm sure a big part of the guards (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    historys mysteries

    job is to keep guns out of the courtroom.  We could get rid of their jobs if the ALJ, the claimant, you and any experts were always strapped.  Everybody armed, everybody safe!

    the fact that you're right is nothing more than interesting

    by Egg on Thu Jan 17, 2013 at 04:49:04 PM PST

  •  The big question for all the gun nuts (4+ / 0-)

    that insist they need an arsenal to protect their home - when you hear the "bad guy" break in, which gun are you going to use? Do you need 12 because depending on the sound of their footsteps, different bad guys might require a different gun? Or based on their size, or on the lighting conditions? Decisions, decisions... This must be why one person needs so many guns for protection.

  •  So By Their Rationale...... (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    twigg, historys mysteries, splashy

    we should all leave our knives by the front door, & no one will ever be stabbed again.  Or quit driving, & no one will ever die by vehicular homicide again.

    Or leave a bunch of feathers by the front door, & no one will ever be tickled again......only "criminals" are doing the deed, not the bullets & certainly not the assault rifles.  

    This convoluted, whacky reasoning makes me scared for the United States.  This country has become a nation of dupes.  

    Duh!

  •  The second point, a million times: (3+ / 0-)
    Why the HELL do you need two 30-round magazines for your AR? What the fuck are you shooting at that requires 60 bullets to fucking kill? Also, why do you have an Assault Rifle (hence the AR) in the first place? Either you have a handgun for self-defense, or a rifle for hunting. But an assault rifle? That's a weapon used only for one thing: to kill people. You sir, scare me.

    Political compass: -8.75 / -4.72

    by Mark Mywurtz on Thu Jan 17, 2013 at 06:32:42 PM PST

  •  Notice: not an original thought in the whole convo (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    slothlax, historys mysteries, splashy

    Blue collar people can be insightful and skeptical. These two were just repeating what they'd heard.

  •  Countering break-ins (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    slothlax, jan4insight, splashy

    If you've got 10 or 12 military grade weapons lying around, and your creeper finds one before you hear the creeper, you're going to be very dead.  I'm assuming that most of these people don't sit up all night with their AR15s at the ready, waiting for prowlers and psychos and extraterrestrials to show up.  (OK, perhaps that assumption isn't 100% solid.)

  •  Okay... answers... (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    theatre goon

    Now, I'm typing as I come to the numbers, and without reading the comments. So consider this almost like I was right there in front of you replying as these things came from your mouth....

    1, Well, would the point be more clear if they used david gregory instead of obama? It's my understanding that he sends his kids to sidwell friends school, and they have armed guards, but then turns around and gets cranky right at wayne lapierre's face for proposing armed guards at schools. Now, don't get me wrong, wayne lapierre is a lobbyist and as such is just a political mercenary, but in this one instance it is about the message not the messenger. Gregory is a hypocrite for pissing on the idea of armed guards at schools when he himself puts his kids in a school that has armed guards. And that's in DC, one of the most restrictive gun places in the country.

    2, Texas has a wildly growing feral hog problem. Pigs that look like wilbur from charlotte's web, after just a couple generations in the wild turn into the full-bore tusked bristle brush wild boar monsters you see on national geographic. The texas feral hog problem has spread far beyond it's own borders. These things stay in a herd of a couple or many dozen. You come across a sow with piglets, in a herd of thirty, and they take a disliking to you, and you will be praying that your two full AR magazines are enough to cover your ass as you quickstep it to some sort of safety. Furthermore, if you are at all farming and you have to protect the crops that will be feeding your family through winter, then you have a clear and tangible need for a rifle with thirty rounds on board. ALSO, many farmers invite people to come onto their land and eradicate as many of the invasive feral hogs as possible, some even paying the shooters a bounty per hog killed.
    Links - national feral swine mapping system, found through google...
    http://128.192.20.53/...
    My, look at texas and the rest of those gulf coast states. That's a lot of pig infestation.

    3, If the answer to any crisis of danger is to call a trained person who carries a gun (a cop)... And that IS the answer that most anti-gun folks give when asked what people should do in case of assault... then how does your head not implode when you then change positions and undermine the idea that a cop on-scene would be a good idea? Because that's what you do when you bring up columbine or va tech. Not to mention that those two events changed the ENTIRE playbook used by cops for active shooter events.

    4, There is no regulation that will stop the determined shooter. Look at that guy brevik in norway - that rabid mind bought an entire farm and did the Green Acres thing as a cover story to buy fertilizer. A fucking farm, damn! And guns are a hell of a lot easier to make than the media-lobotomized people of today believe. The technology of semi-automatic is a solid hundred and fifteen-ish years old. And fully automatic machine guns are even older. You know how the conservatives are hell bent on regulating away proof that sex happens rather than accept that people do have sex, and that kids should be taught to act responsibly regarding those feelings? Well the same basic process is being performed on the other side. Anti gun folks are hell bent on regulating away proof that violence happens rather than accept that people do commit violence, and that kids should be taught to behave responsibly regarding those feelings.
    In both cases, people are hell bent on regulating away the objects that prove that the aspect of life they hate does exist, rather than face facts and try to assist their kids in behaving responsibly.

    5, Yeah, that's not the thing to do. However, there is just so much focus on the object! Footage of a gun just sitting there in profound defiance of the language about guns being the reason behind mass killings... That footage is borne of frustration. And we simply haven't yet found a very good way to pull focus from the object and back onto the destructive behavior. "Guns kill people"... Well, no, they don't, they aren't like the battle droids from star wars. It's the destructive behavior. People don't have problems with guns - just look at how many cops have a pistol, and they are definitely still fallible humans! People have problems with the idiot-with-gun, with the homicidal-person-with-gun. It's not the gun, it's the person holding it.
    Conservatives can't properly embrace that, because to do so would be to provide some sort of foundation for universal mental health. Liberals can't embrace it properly either, because to do that would be to provide some sort of foundation for acceptance that we are still somewhat violent unevolved hairless primates.
    If you can come up with something that focuses on the offensive behavior rather than the object, while avoiding territory that would mean uncomfortable acknowledgements for either conservatives or liberals, you'll be the hero of both sides.

    And unmentioned was how damned easy it is to make a weapon of mass killing. Jeez, high school chemistry for crying out loud! With just what was in the science class storage room, we had all the stuff to make some really dangerous stuff. It doesn't take much at all to take grocery store salt and get it to separate into explosive sodium and poisonous chorine gas. Explosive powder is many hundreds of years old, the modern gunpowder isn't all that 'modern'. It's sorta like how car companies change a little bit of a car and say "NEW MODEL!". This extreme ease spotlights that the pivot point is to focus on the person, not the object. Hell, everyone knows ammonia and bleach create a deadly chemical weapon of mass murder, and that's just a grocery store trip.

    It's safe to trust a sane person with the keys to nuclear weapons, but it's not safe to trust an insane person with the cleaners under the kitchen sink. The answer is not gun control, it's people care.

    by JayFromPA on Thu Jan 17, 2013 at 08:58:09 PM PST

    •  Well, thanks for your comment... (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Sandino

      But I'm not sure where you're going with this.

      1. I'm not familiar with David Gregory so I'll leave off addressing him, but the point for me regarding the NRA's ad is this: the rich send their kids to incredibly privileged schools. Period. Armed guards are not part of the reason for the elite's choice of a school. Meanwhile, the President's kids, as well as the kids of other high-ranking members of Congress, etc., receive protection BECAUSE of their status in running our country puts them in far more likely danger than the average school kid.

      Hence why nearly everyone has overwhelmingly condemned the NRA's ad.

      2. A growing wild feral hog problem that requires an AR15 with 30 round magazines? Are these mutant feral hogs/zombie hogs that are impervious to a bullet from a hand-gun or hunting rifle? You need a fucking ASSAULT weapon in order to kill a pig and/or defend your crops from... something/someone? (You never mention that who.) Moreover, not all gun owners are farmers, so presumably what's their excuse?

      3. The point about armed guards versus cops is one you need to discern. An armed guard on scene is different from calling the cops. I recommend reading this article for clarification: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/...

      Armed guards don't stop determined shooters, but determined shooters are less likely to be able to kill groups of people if we have sensible gun regulation such as background checks, a waiting period, limits on ammo purchasing. In fact, if we regulated guns like we do cars, we could easily prevent/mitigate further massacres. It should be noted that most Americans also support these steps.

      4. Your argument is completely false. There is no evidence that people are trying to regulate away violence or "regulate away objects" (i.e. ban guns). We just want some sensible rules and regulations in order to prevent a majority of the worst excesses of gun violence, especially considering that most of the massacres today have been committed with legally purchased firearms.

      5. Your tired rationale that "guns don't kill people" leaves off the caveat: "but they sure do make it a lot easier!" A person with a knife cannot kill as many people as a person with an AR15 or M4 assault rifle with a 30-round magazine. The inability for a vocal minority of gun-nuts to comprehend and accept this is not only staggeringly ignorant, it is extremely disconcerting for the future of gun violence in America.

      The need for gun regulation, which is consistent with the 2nd amendment's provision for a "well-regulated militia," would prevent instances like Sandy Hook, Columbine, Virginia Tech, and other massacres from happening. And this has nothing to do with the guns themselves and everything to do with the people who wield them or want to carte blanche access to them without even a modicum of oversight. This ain't the wild west nor is it a dystopian future society. And frankly, that someone can create a poison with ammonia and bleach does not change the fact that people aren't using ammonia and bleach to kill people in large numbers, but they are using guns.

      But hey, I'm just one guy. I suggest reading the article all over this site if you want even more reasons why my points stand.

      "When facts are reported, they deny the value of evidence; when the evidence is produced, they declare it inconclusive." -- Augustine, in The City of God.

      by Zek J Evets on Thu Jan 17, 2013 at 10:52:41 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Replies and clarifications... (0+ / 0-)

        1, Yeah, I'm aware that the NRA using the president in the ad was a poor choice. This is, in my opinion, a matter of the intended point of the ad being overshadowed by the side effect of that poor choice. I am reminded of when a mom asked chris christie about if he supports NJ public schools so much then why does he send his kids to a private school.... Christie sidestepped the jab at the obvious hypocrisy and started berating the mom as if she was criticizing the children themselves. Seriously, christie acted as if the focus was the children, rather than his choice of school. It's a nuanced point, but it does apply.

        I continue to note that there is a fair amount of "Rights for me but not for thee" going on amongst the ruling political class. Bailouts for the banks, not the customers. Preferential stock knowledge for the congress, not the voters. And so on. Taken in that light, the NRA's ad is a poke at the "Guys with guns can guard MY child's school, but I'm going to vote against guys with guns being allowed to guard YOUR child's school. Because, you know, kids can't be around guns. Except mine, who are around guards with guns every school day. But no guns.

        2, It's not A singular pig. It's a HERD. Average size is 100 to 150 pounds EACH, but they can get up to 600 pounds. These things grow a thick hide one to three inches thick for protection. So yeah, you get a hog that weighs as much as a female great dane, throw on a hide of armor more than an inch thick, add sharp tusks, and then add attitude because of no natural predators. How high powered do you think you need to get through more than an inch of tough hide? And that's for how many animals that are coming at you?
        And remember that these things destroy acres of crops in a few days. When it takes about 40 acres to support a small family for a year, and a small group of feral hogs can destroy half of that in a few days, you do the math...

        3, There's a lot in your #3, too much to unpack it all.
        A person who has graduated the academy and is signed on to a police force is often side-employed as armed guard, and they do it in police uniform. I'd like some separation of their public police duty from their private guard duty by requiring they be out of uniform when not on the law enforcement job. I know the diff between guards and cops, and it's the rest of the people who keep conflating the two.
        Federal background checks are already required of everyone that the federal government can legally compel into compliance. If it goes through a federal firearms licensee, it gets a background check. It's the same-state private sales that do not rise above the state purview that requires state law to compel people to use the federal firearms licensee. That's how the gears of law actually function. That's how it is in PA.
        If we regulated guns like we do cars, then zimmerman could not possibly face jail time for what I consider to be murder. Folks who want guns regulated like cars often don't notice that people are allowed to build their own tiny car-like gokarts, meaning people would be allowed to build their own guns in their basement.
        Be careful what you wish for, you just might get it.

        4, Look at the new law in new york. That is a de facto ban on more than 95% of handguns by regulating away magazines of eight or more rounds. Now, to inform you of the reach of that regulation, that includes pistols that were invented when my great grandfather was still too young to grow facial hair. We are talking regulating away guns that are a hundred and fifteen years old.
        I have evidence that people are regulating away objects because it is happening right now in new york state.

        5, Have a care about putting too much faith that the main understanding of 'regulated' means the same back then as it does now. Once upon a time gay was understood to mean happy, then semantic change occurred slowly and now it means homosexual. Once upon a time 'awful' was a positive word meaning 'full of awe'. Nowadays nobody who uses awful means anything to do with awe.
        Regulated back then, amongst the latin-educated founders, was to make orderly and function well. Well regulated meant trained and capable of the task at hand. Regulator clocks were quite orderly and capable of keeping accurate time.

        The founders certainly could imagine a rifle that fires many rounds quickly, sending out a rapid line of bullets. The militaries of the world tried to simulate such a rapid line of bullets by having multiple lines of people shoot and then reload while the next line was shooting, in quick succession. A semi-auto rifle was certainly something that was desired, they just weren't able to overcome the technical details.

        It's safe to trust a sane person with the keys to nuclear weapons, but it's not safe to trust an insane person with the cleaners under the kitchen sink. The answer is not gun control, it's people care.

        by JayFromPA on Fri Jan 18, 2013 at 03:51:04 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

    •  People hunt wild boar in France, Germany, Spain (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Sandino

      but manage it quite well using bolt action hunting rifles.

      A German friend of mine who is a passionate hunter hunts boar, and uses a classic rifle, and carries 45 to finish them off if it is not a clean kill, and for short range protection

      •  Do they have sounders... (0+ / 0-)

        ...that consist of several dozens of animals?  

        The largest I ever saw, I lost count at around twenty-five, there were at least half again as many.

        Are they trying to reduce the numbers of those sounders as much as possible, or take a single animal for later consumption?

        Will their hogs attack human beings when they have young with them (which is pretty much year-round)?

        Can their hogs destroy twenty-five acres of graze in two days?

        I would say that there's a very large difference between the two situations -- we are talking about an invasive, non-native species with no natural predators breeding with no limitations.

        Yes, I often dress as a pirate. Your point?

        by theatre goon on Fri Jan 18, 2013 at 03:56:39 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  Don't the local govts have control programs (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          peterfallow

          for these hogs? I mean, if they are destroying so much valuable grazing land that must be worth millions of dollars to a major economic sector of the state, why aren't the people losing all that money going to their county or state representatives to do something about it once and for all?

          On the east end of little old Long Island, NY, the local governments allow a controlled hunt of deer to manage the herd every so often. New Jersey does that occasionally with their black bears in the northwest part of the state. People line up to buy permits for this.

          So the fact that the local governments in Texas and these other states that are overrun with hogs don't choose to set up control programs means that every citizen in those areas--and by extension (because your post seems to be opposing stricter gun regulations in general), the nation at large--must be able to buy semiautomatic weapons with high-capacity magazines? That's a stretch.

          Or how about this? Are these hog herds trackable, or do they suddenly appear, like a flash hogmob? If they are trackable, why don't twenty-five good and strong citizens with rifles form a pig posse and go get them? What, the hogs don't call in to tell where they will be tomorrow? Are you telling me that no police force in any of these states has a helicopter that could be used? No traffic copter could be rented for the purpose? No light plane? Maybe Sarah Palin would enjoy hunting hogs from an airplane. That would be a great idea for her next reality show.

          There are sensible solutions to most any of these "dangers" that people claim to need protection from. And these answers generally already have a mechanism for getting accomplished.

          It sure seems to me that, for the people who put up these straw men as a rationale for needing these weapons, their real argument pretty much boils down to just "I want guns."

          •  You really don't know what you're talking about... (0+ / 0-)

            ...do you?

            There have been many attempts to control the wild pig population, at both the state and county level, such as killing them from airplanes or helicopters.  Hiring trackers and dogs, poisoning, widespread trapping...

            These have largely failed.

            What has seemed to have some effect is that they have removed all restrictions on individuals trying to lessen the numbers -- night hunting, limits on numbers, etc.

            This has shown some progress, at least in small areas.

            You know, allowing the citizens in the worst affected areas contribute to the protection of valuable economic areas.  Including what you so dismissingly term a "pig posse."  See, sometimes, the people have to help, we can't all just sit back and wait for the state or the county to do it for us.  There are a lot more private citizens than there are country employees -- this should come as no surprise.

            See, the police have their own problems, like trying to enforce the law.  No traffic copters at all for several counties -- those are typically only found in urban areas.  And, we don't really want Sarah Palin anywhere near us, thank you very much.

            So, it would seem that you need to inform yourself a bit more on the situation before you make suggestions which have already been tried and failed, and engaging in your own straw men while accusing others of doing so.

            In other words, you might want to actually listen to what those of differing experiences than your own have to say, rather than dismissing them as something they are not.

            Your own mileage, of course, may vary.

            Yes, I often dress as a pirate. Your point?

            by theatre goon on Fri Jan 18, 2013 at 08:46:48 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

          •  tipped for "flash hog mob" - n/t (0+ / 0-)
        •  Where do you think your hogs came from? (0+ / 0-)

          They are a native European animal, and since we don't have tigers or lions etc, they have no natural predators here either.

          Do they go around in troops, of course, but since the population density of Germany is 8 times the population density of Texas, they have much less habitat so they are better controlled.

          Do sows with "marcassins" attack? Well I know that Europeans tend to be more cultured and polite, but apparently this hasn't been transferred to the hogs, so yes you do not fuck with wild boar if you come across one in the woods, and especially mumsy with her little babies. Similarly they seem to have very little respect for farmers work, and will root out a field in no time.

          Are they common - I have seen them a few times in France- once a big boar in a restaurant car park as I was leaving, so I went in for another coffee. Other times in the South West of France, I came across a family eating walnuts in an orchard.

          •  So, nothing like what we're dealing with. (0+ / 0-)

            It's the difference between hunting, and simply trying to lower an overwhelming population.

            Here's a good, short article about what we're dealing with:
            US Pig Population an Ecological Disaster

            There's also a really good map of outbreaks which I can't seem to find at the moment.  My Google-fu doesn't seem to be working today.

            It really drives me up a wall to hear people dismissing this problem as a fantasy or as something that is blown out of proportion.  Consider it a pet-peeve of mine, but it just shows how little regard some people show for reality when they don't have to deal with it personally.

            It's not a joke, it's not a fantasy -- it is a fact of life that many of us have to deal with.  Those who make a joke of it are simply ignorant.  You've not done so, to my knowledge, so please do not think that I am directing this at you, personally.

            Yes, I often dress as a pirate. Your point?

            by theatre goon on Fri Jan 18, 2013 at 01:12:21 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

          •  Another diff between europe and america (0+ / 0-)

            The land there has been tamed. The land here has not been tamed.

            The europeans have tramped and trod across that continent, over the same ground over and over, for so many centuries, that they have almost completely removed the "nature - red in tooth and claw" aspect when it comes to dangers to humans.

            Over here on the american continent... To my understanding the native americans lived more in a manner alongside that red tooth/claw aspect rather than in opposition to it. And then, it is my understanding that the arrival of europeans passed along a few illnesses that acted like a plague, leaving that red toothed nature to be the only thing existing in much of the land, so it grew again dominant completely.

            And to this day, the american continent is not tamed.

            Hence, it is an apples to oranges issue to try and compare between the two continents when the issue even relates to wildlife. Europeans have the hound of the baskervilles and tales of werewolves on the moor. Americans have actual 400 pound hogs with razor tusks running around.

            It's safe to trust a sane person with the keys to nuclear weapons, but it's not safe to trust an insane person with the cleaners under the kitchen sink. The answer is not gun control, it's people care.

            by JayFromPA on Fri Jan 18, 2013 at 04:10:46 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

  •  In Italiano si dice (0+ / 0-)

    Il momento del'ecalante. That moment on the staircase when it comes clear to what you should have said before the door closed behind you.

    Just getting a handle on the knobs and dials.... Hey, don't touch that!

    by Old Lefty on Thu Jan 17, 2013 at 10:10:00 PM PST

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