CSotD: Acceptable Losses

JD Crowe cuts to the chase and sets up our second day of Uvalde reactions.

On his Facebook page, he cites a 2015 tweet as the inspiration:

“In retrospect Sandy Hook marked the end of the US gun control debate. Once America decided killing children was bearable, it was over.” — Dan Hodges (@DPJHodges on Twitter)

Obviously, we don’t give a damn. Or we don’t give enough of a damn.

Sentimental cartoons of people being sad aren’t going to change that. We need to fight back, not weep.

And we have to keep trying.

I used to bristle seeing toddlers popping around in the backs of cars, but I see it less often. Parents have begun using car seats and seatbelts pretty regularly.

And when I lived just south of Montreal, Border Patrol officers told me of carloads of high-school kids coming back from Quebec, where the drinking age was 18. They’d see five kids puking all over themselves but a stone-cold sober designated driver at the wheel.

Change can happen. Common sense can get a grip.

And laws can work, if they aren’t riddled with loopholes to gain passage.

If you don’t believe it, emigrate. Seriously. GTFO. Democracy, like old age, ain’t for sissies.



Still, as Matt Davies suggests, it’s an uphill battle. Wearing seat belts or driving sober simply requires people wising up, but gun rights sweeps away its more sensible opposite viewpoints because it is actively promoted by deep-pocketed interests willing to fearmonger for profit and for power, and to capitalize on the paranoia of those who feel the world has not dealt them a fair hand.


Barry Blitt satirized “thoughts and prayers” with a series of portraits of pro-gun politicians offering prayers with blood-soaked hands, and others have adopted the idea.

They are, indeed, turning their backs on the problem with these half-baked pretenses at sympathy, though, in their defense, they may genuinely be that ignorant and out of touch.

Ted Cruz has launched a conservative talking point about how the reason those kids died was that the school didn’t lock its doors, but, to start with, the gunman was confronted at the door by a resource officer, so, if the door was unlocked, it was not unsecured. Details, I’m sure, will emerge.

Meanwhile, my job from 1992 to 2006 involved visiting schools regularly and I visited hundreds of school buildings. After Columbine (1999) they locked everthing down except the main entrance, and most installed electric locks there that required you to buzz in and be admitted. I even took the pocketknife off my key chain so I wouldn’t have to keep leaving it in the car.

Point being this: Everyone everyone everyone who has been in a school building in the past quarter century knows they don’t leave their doors unlocked. If you aren’t visiting schools often enough to know that, you really need to STFU about their security systems.

It makes you sound like the sort of out-of-touch jackass who, less than two years after the Aurora shootings, would cite orange hair in his argument that we shouldn’t hamper people who want to buy guns, even when they break the law in doing so.


Juxtaposition of the Day

(Steve Brodner)


(Nick Anderson – Counterpoint)

Meanwhile, at the scene of the crime, Gov Greg Abbott held a press conference in which he carefully explained that the problem is mental health, which was interesting since, a few days before the murder, fellow-Texan Nick Anderson had pointed out how much easier it is to get guns than to get treatment.

Gubernatorial candidate Beto O’Rourke interrupted Abbott’s performative show, which was dramatic and has gotten a lot of praise, though my suspicion is that his intrusion may well backfire at the polls.

If it was a spontaneous response to the dodging and ducking as seen in Brodner’s piece, it doesn’t suggest cool-headedness, and if it were planned, he’d have done better to do what he did later: Hold a competing press conference outside where he countered Abbott’s statements with facts.


Of course, this does raise the question of whether the press would have stuck around to hear him if he hadn’t acted like — in the loud words of the governor’s staff — an asshole and a son of a bitch.


Which ties in neatly with Ward Sutton’s take. A lot of cartoonists noted that it keeps happening, but tying in Groundhog Day is a brilliant touch because, in the movie, it keeps happening over and over until Phil stops being such an asshole.

Perhaps Beto is simply reversing the concept and working to break the cycle by being more of one. And, wotthehell, at this point, what have we got to lose?


Jeff Berry lists the horrors, and echoes Yeats:

I said yesterday that the nitpickers and gunlovers will rise up to challenge definitions instead of causes, but AR-15 is a general descriptor, the A stands for “Armalite,” not “assault” and none of it matters at all to the 272 murdered in those attacks, or the hundreds more wounded and maimed, nor the thousands who grieve.


Steve Kelley (Creators) echoes something I’m seeing from others in the pro-gun/anarchist crowd, which is to blame the schools and promote homeschooling.

It would be reasonable if we didn’t live in a nation where nearly half the homes contain guns and if children didn’t frequently die, one by one rather than in groups of 20 or so, because of an unsecured, loaded gun:

Let me repeat what has become my standard disclaimer: I grew up around hunters and I shot competitively, in the days before the NRA became a terrorist group. I have nothing against guns.

But hunters don’t need AR-15s and aren’t permitted to carry large clips.

Moreover, sane gun groups still promote safety, and sane gun owners still listen.


Juxtaposition of the Day #2

(Mike Luckovich)

(John Darkow)

But they’re being outspent and out-politicked by the greedy and power-hungry, who recognize that their selfish goals are attainable, as long as we all agree that the ends justify the means and so gunning down children is acceptable.


Meanwhile, the whole world is watching, and, judging by Australia’s Peter Broelman, we aren’t fooling them in the least.

Haven’t in years, even if they sang “seagull” instead of “eagle.”


3 thoughts on “CSotD: Acceptable Losses

  1. The 2d Amendment was put into place to guarantee armed state militias, _which were to take the place of a large, standing military_.

    The military, in the historic experience of many of the founding fathers from the different colonies and states, had been used to punish some of the religious groups who sought freedom by coming to America.

    In the past two years 35 state legislatures have passed laws affecting school children but once again _consideration for passing legislation protecting their actual lives came in dead last_.

  2. The 2nd Amendment was enacted to ensure that the States could field their well-ordered militias without having to take on the financial and practical burdens of firearms ownership, maintenance, and protection. Having just fought a costly war against a powerful distant centralized government in England, they were not all that fond of the idea of enabling a new one on this continent, but the national government founded in the Articles of Confederation was too weak to be effective, and a new, “more perfect” (read: stronger) federal authority was needed. But if that federal government had the power to deny private ownership of firearms, then the States would have to levy taxes to buy weapons and shot and powder, and store them all somewhere, and pay to maintain everything in good working order, and to transport them where they were needed (in a world where Manhattan to Philadelphia was a 3-day journey by horse), and prevent them from being stolen by angry Native Americans or enslaved persons looking for freedom, etc. So it was a no-brainer choice for the States: the new Federal government simply would be denied ANY power to infringe upon private ownership of firearms. That’s the result they wanted so that’s what they wrote. The 2nd Amendment exists to solve problems that no longer exist, but until it is amended or rescinded, the courts will — rightly, under our Constitution — shut down any legislation that runs counter to the plain text. And looking at the geniuses that have been elected to high office in the several states and D.C., I’m in no hurry to encourage any of them to start rewriting the Constitution.

  3. If we wanted to make plain text arguments, the second amendment only forbids infringing on the right of the people to possess and carry weapons, nothing about acquisition, which means it would be fair game to go as high as outlawing the sale of guns but unconstitutional to make any laws concerning what to do once anybody has one. If somebody wants a gun they can forge their own.

    That’s obviously stupid, so clearly plain-text arguments aren’t the way to go.

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