Catch 44

I just saw where Mike Huckabee suggested that the senseless murders in Newtown was of our own device by taking God out of our Schools.  What an asshole.

I’m pleasantly non plussed to see even a minority of the the media espousing the notion that mass shootings in this country are realistically, at least in part, the fault of our health care system as opposed to the all too typical hysteria of less than adequate gun control. I do believe that weapons policy in this country is far too lenient but I’m a firm proponent of the second amendment and confident that an elaborately  weaponised populace is  almost entirely beside the point.  I’m of the understanding that our neighbors to the north are similarly festooned with firearms but do not suffer near the frequency of tragedy as we do.  The corollary is therefore that our problem is sociological and/or cultural.  At the risk of serially contradicting myself, my conviction is that the NRA and asshats like Ted Nugent are a bunch of abject fuckheads but I understand completely that guns don’t kill people, people do.

We need to do something.  We should have done something a long time ago.  In terms of policy, the most efficacious I ever heard was advanced by Chris Rock who said that the best solution would be to make the goddamn bullets prohibitively exorbitant.  Think about it.  It makes profound sense.  Then, all the under endowed, radical right wing lunatics would be far less inclined to stockpile into arsenals guns they could never afford to actually use.  Of course we should ban any gun designed specifically to kill as many humans as possible in the shortest amount of time; ban high capacity clips and magazines etc., but I doubt that would do fuck all to mitigate what has become such chronic catastrophe.

It’s pretty obvious that there exists no chance of simply legislating ourselves out of this with regard to gun control.  Far more germane to the argument is the idea that we avail ourselves of more comprehensive mental health access and implementation.  A myriad of tragedies private, personal and public might then be averted.  Prohibition as panacea for anything as ubiquitous as firearms is as naive and wrong headed as prohibition of alcohol or marijuana.  Not only is it virtually impossible but the success of it would only result in advantage to the lawless or anyone of iniquitous intent.

Beyond and above it all is the pervasive malaise of violence seemingly unique to American society which manifests itself in video games, film and television.  We have created generations that would view the Zapruder film with perverse glee not only of a human life being extinguished but at the attendant gore.  The answer hardly lies in the subversion of our first amendment but in addressing what has emerged as a far too casual countenance of everything from war to random brutality in our own back yards.  I suspect the solution lies in somehow fomenting against the institutionalized culture of fear that I believe to be the impetus of it all.  If it bleeds it leads.  The media understands all too well that messages such as the terrorists are everywhere and hate us for our freedom guarantees paying asses in the seats.  Americans are willingly sick to feverish with fear of anyone or anything that is merely different.  We are complicit in consumption of the Kool Aid of bigotry, racism and reasonless hate just about every form of media and entertainment turns an avaricious profit from.

I realize what I’m pointing out here isn’t anything new.  Michael Moore rather artfully cast light on it in both “Fahrenheit 911” and “Bowling For Columbine”.  But it bears pointing out as loudly and with as much volume and velocity as we can muster because it sure as hell isn’t getting any better.

Drinks for my friends.

2 Responses to “Catch 44”

  • I’ve been screaming into the void for my whole adult life about the criminal negligence of our education system, of our constant and irrational fear of one another, and of our utter inability to be even minimally decent human beings. Until we can undermine the culture of “I got mine, you’re on your own,” we’re never going to escape these kinds of tragedies; people are all too willing – gleeful, even – to harm others in order to get what they want.

  • reiyalight:

    I like your reference to the media, serving us up a Kool Aid, analogy. These mass killers have been exposed to video games which espose senseless violence & destruction. I don’t understand how that industry gets away with teaching hate,and human subjucation. I had the S.F. chronicle in my hands after the killing at the Denver theater, a few months ago. I observed most of the images were of white men being promoted as important and espoused as succesful. The few other images were of woman and others who looked and acted scripted as the white man. Or being promoted for the financial value of their sexuality, or athleticism.
    Also being members a society which is extremely fractanalized and war prone, it appears these young men have white male entitelment issues. Sometimes I hate people, however I don’t feel that I have the right to act upon it.

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