It's a perennial gunboard topic and has lately been shaking up the gun-blogosphere: the (supposed) conflict between the working-within-the-system folks who seek better gunlaws and the-system-is-broken folks who stand in opposition to any gun laws and send harsh letters to editors.
One bunch is painted as trimmers, effete compromisers, Zumbos in the making; the other as nutjobs with basement bunkers, stockpiling arms, ammunition, food, water and gold who "scare the white people" and "set us back."
Aw, yah, gee, we'd all like to be a credit to our species but let us get some stuff clear:
- There's no getting the gun-fearing weenies of the world to not be scared of and by you once you admit to owning guns. No matter how engraved, antique and/or sporting they are. No matter what license or permit you have. Yes yes, you can wear a suit and speak softly and that does get you into more offices, but if the people inside that office are askeert of guns, you are unlikely to change that fear no matter how reasonable, rational and well-groomed you are.
- Efforts to change gun laws for the better have, in fact, been working in recent years.
- Efforts to change the culture for the better proceed slowly and require everybody's effort, including our self-appointed coal-mine canaries.
- Admitting that you Have A Plan or that you would Stand Your Ground Against Gun-Grabbers just gets you on various and sundry lists. This is small taters if you already are list-worthy by havin' a lot of NFA weapons or bein' otherwise highly visible, especially in places like NJ, CA, MA and IL that track firearm ownership more closely than other States, but there are some who would benefit -- if they think Real Trouble™ is coming -- by layin' low until it's happening. The nail that sticks up does get hammered down when hammer time comes along; this is a valuable public service for the nails that were just pretendin' to lie flush. However, it relegates your own personal role in the fighting to a footnote listing the first casualities. Some individuals would consider that a tactical error.
- Other things being equal, if you were hopin' to have grandkids (or stick around to spoil the ones you've already got), legislatures and courtrooms are better tools for change than street-fighting. Please go read up on the various resistance groups in wartime; while they are brave, often inspiring, fight hard and occasionally win, A) it usually takes outside help and B) the survival rate is wretched even compared to uniformed combatants in the same war. A dead lion trumps a live snake -- but a live lion's even better.
It's not simple or easy. It's not quick. The level of JBTery is not especially high and is unlikely to escalate rapidly, which means any would-be armed resistor is not Mao's "fish in the sea" amongst the general population but more like a fish outta water. Hearts and minds must be won -- not only in the halls of power but right on your street, one at a time. Sometimes a strongly-worded Letter To The Editor works. Sometimes bein' Jane Ordinary helps ("Why, look, she shoots and she's never eaten even one baby!"). Sometimes a nice suit and gentle persuasion does the trick.
Let's try 'em all -- and try to stop takin' aim at the others in our ranks. The enemy is over there.
1. I'm all for stockpiling the first four, any big city is days away from hunger if the wheels stop and hungry people are no respecters of private property. As for the last, you gonna eat that stuff cold, smoke it or use it for a pillow?
2. Scruuue yoooo: some of 'em scare me and I ain't that white. Some of the bore-from-within crowd scare me, too, and both groups in usually the same way: Rule Two, dammit! A real danger beats airy-fairy yak about if we should write about shooting the bastids or just vote 'em to the curb.
3. When MSM and gungrabbers alike use "NRA" as a codeword for "scarybad gunnies," it's a bit hard to figure what constitues a "setback."
4. Carl Drega is way more symptom than hero. A lotta folks seem to miss that distinction.
T. R. MCELROY'S STREAMLINED TELEGRAPH KEYS
7 months ago