Adventus

"The central doctrine of Christianity, then, is not that God is a bastard. It is, in the words of the late Dominican theologian Herbert McCabe, that if you don’t love you’re dead, and if you do, they’ll kill you."--Terry Eagleton

"It is impossible for me to say in my book one word about all that music has meant in my life. How then can I hope to be understood?--Ludwig Wittgenstein

“The opposite of poverty is not wealth; the opposite of poverty is justice."--Bryan Stevenson

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Innocent until proven a mass shooter


In this scenario there were at least three likely outcomes:


1)  a slaughter of students in the dark as they exited the building for a "fire drill" or the false alarm the shooter planned

2) a hail of bullets between the shooter and the police as students ran panicked in the dark and the police tried to figure out which window the bullets were coming out of

3)  a regular gunfight at the OK Corral as armed students fled the building and began returning fire in the dark, shooting blindly and in panicked response to the gunfire around them, and several students became "shooters" until the firing stopped and the smoke cleared and the whole mess was sorted out.  This, of course, is the preferred NRA "2nd amendment solution."

Fortunately the would-be shooter brandished a gun, alarming a student who warned the police, and when the fire alarm came in a few minutes later they were already evacuating the building and looking for a gun nut, so there was a fourth, rather unlikely outcome which prevailed.  This man's possession of firearms had nothing to do with Heller, in that he wasn't entitled to defend himself in a college dorm room to which he had no legal right in the first place, and in the second he was not given a Constitutional right to arm himself in that building (absent state law which said he could, and after all, this is in  Florida, so who knows; but that's still not a Constitutional right).  And if he hadn't been upset by the early arrival of the police, it might yet have been a bloodbath.

It is notable that, as the NRA apologists love to point out, there is no evidence to suppose this man would have been barred from buying a gun based on a background check, universal or otherwise.  That's cold comfort, however, had he been a bit more fortunate in his planning, or more steely in his resolve.  The question is not:  was he disqualified from having a gun?  The question is:  why did he have access to guns in the first place?  Because he has a 2nd Amendment right to be able to slaughter people unless society is fortunate enough to stop him just before he pulls the trigger?

And in other news, a drunk 16 year old stumbles into the wrong little box on the hillside and is shot for his troubles.  He died.  But, you know, freedumb and self-defense and 2nd Amendment and freedumb.  Or something.

Or maybe it's the developer's fault:

“They have the exact same staircase as us, the exact same carpet. Caleb clearly thought he was in his own house,” said his father, Shawn Gordley, who provided the account of his son’s night. “He probably stumbled around and was just trying to go to his room.”

Twitter blew up over the Steubenville rape trial, I'm told, blaming the 16 year old victim for being drunk in the first place.  I suppose fair is fair, and we should blame Caleb, too.  Certainly can't blame the gun; after all, guns don't kill people.  Can't blame the homeowner, either; he has 2nd Amendment rights to defend himself.

Oh, and while I'm at it:

Deputies say the eighteen year old Carson City man, along with a twenty-three year old Carson City man, were disassembling their weapons in a Crystal Township home Saturday evening. That's when the twenty-three year old thought he unloaded his handgun and while attempting to disassemble the weapon it discharged shooting the victim in the leg.
An "accident" is what, in law we call "negligence."  "Accident" means a meteor fell from the sky, or lightning struck, or a tornado blew through town.  "Negligence" means somebody is responsible, even if they didn't mean any harm.  Somehow the cliche for an "accidental firing" of a firearm is that the weapon "discharged."  Passive voice hides a multitude of sins, and also removes any responsibility for the gun going off.  Guns don't kill people; but they do "go off," kind of like old milk.  So here the weapon "discharged."  Not because the 23 year old was a negligent ass who mishandled a gun and violated basic gun safety (I have never owned a gun and even I know you handle it as if it were loaded, even if you really have just unloaded it), but because the weapon "discharged."

And the next time I sneeze in public, I'll say I didn't do it, my nose just discharged.

This is madness.

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