It's been a long time since we've been able to refer to anyone in the Republican Party as the smart one. In his pouting would-be analysis of the San Bernardino mass murder, Marco Rubio demonstrates why he will never be that guy.
“When this first came out– without knowing anything about the case — the first thing [the left] started talking about was gun control,” Rubio said. “I don’t hear anybody talking about bomb control. They put bombs and left bombs behind on the scene of attack, intending to kill even more people than they did with guns.”
Two things. First, we have bomb control. You are not allowed to own a bomb, or carry a bomb on your back while visiting your neighborhood Chipotle. Not even if you claim you need a bomb for self-protection, or because you're afraid there are other people out there with other bombs who might try to bomb you first. We’re not stupid, after all. You cannot buy ready-made bombs at Walmart, because Walmart is not allowed to sell ready-made mass murder devices. Even those Americans that are permitted to own and operate bombs (for example, for excavation purposes) face very, very tight state and federal regulations and restrictions; as for the rest of us, outside of military service we are allowed to be in personal possession of a mass-murder-sized bomb approximately never.
Perhaps because America has bomb control, our nation faces no epidemic of bomb-related mass murders. There are some—most in recent decades perpetrated by radical far-right groups against government targets or as part of anti-abortion extremism—but we do not have bombs going off on a daily basis in cities around the nation, the bodies piling up in our trauma centers and in our morgues while our politicians wonder what, if anything, should be done. That would seem to offer at least some evidence that our "bomb controls" are, despite the continued ability of some very small band of lunatics to create bombs despite the obstacles we have thrust in their way, working.
The second obvious point: These murderers did not bomb 14 people to death while wounding 17 others. They shot them. That is why "the left" is talking about guns, the legal things used to once again commit an act of mass murder in America, rather than bombs, the illegal things which once again were not. You. Stupid. Git. [sorry-fingers slipped]
It is true that the murders brought bombs with them—and those bombs did not work. They did not work because actual, tightly regulated bombs are strictly controlled, and almost impossible to buy off-the-shelf, so murderers seeking to use bombs must make them themselves. And bombs are hard to make. And very, very often do not work, because they are hard to make. Despite reports of multiple bombs being prepared by the murderers in San Bernardino, none of them appears to have detonated, and none of them injured anyone. The freely purchased guns, however, appear to have worked perfectly.
So I think we would all be very, very happy to talk about gun control as an adjunct of bomb control. If bomb control has been so successful, that would seem to indicate a fine path for reducing mass murder via guns as well. All we have to do is regulate guns like we regulate bombs. You can't buy them without a license. You can't get a license without a background check. And training. And even if you have a license and training you can't buy them except through tightly controlled dealers and a federal system for tracking every last pound of approved, registered, regulated material, because only a lunatic would argue that people be allowed to wander around random American neighborhoods with implements of mass murder dangling from their shoulder.
Yep, let's do that. Let's compare gun control to bomb control, Mr. Rubio. Let's all do that right now.