Law Dog Answers 20 Questions

Today’s must-read essay is from 5 years ago, but still timely:

I hope I will be forgiven for quoting major sections of his essay, because the man is brilliant and crystal clear.

Ok, I’ll play

20 questions from here.

Do you believe that criminals and domestic abusers should be able to buy guns without background checks?

No background check ever stopped a criminal from getting his hands on a gun. When they steal them out of cop cars and FBI vans, they don’t leave a 4473 on the seat, and the ATF has never received a 4473 from the local dope house. And given the ever-loosening definition of “domestic abuser”, I’ve got reservations there, too.

What is your proposal for keeping guns away from criminals, domestic abusers, terrorists and dangerously mentally ill people?

Since domestic abuse is a crime, and since terrorism is a crime, let me tighten that up for you: “What is your proposal for keeping guns away from criminals and dangerously mentally ill people?

Easy. When they are convicted of a crime, stick their arses in prison.

Do you believe that a background check infringes on your constitutional right to “keep and bear arms”?


Do you believe that I and people with whom I work intend to ban your guns?


If yes to #4, how do you think that could happen ( I mean the physical action)?

The same way you banned guns in New York. The same way you banned guns in Chicago. The same way you banned guns in Washington DC. Duh.

(My comment: Next comes a few silly questions meant to show that the interlocutor is a weepy little girl, terrified that armed by law abiding citizens might gun her down like a dog during a tiff or tear-squall. )

Do you believe in the notion that if you don’t like what someone is doing or saying, second amendment remedies should be applied?

Since I don’t like being robbed, and I don’t like being assaulted, yes, I do. As for speaking, that’s what the Amendment next to the Second is for.

Do you believe it is O.K. to call people with whom you disagree liars and demeaning names?

If they’re lying, it’s fairly appropriate. And since folks from your side have called me everything from crazy to redneck to inbred, I’d have to ask your stance on that one.

If yes to #8, would you do it in a public place to the person’s face?

Oh, yes.

(The naked cowardice on display, combined with the hypocritical smugness (as if being a victim grants you superpowers) is mildly sickening to one of my temperament. If the girl were really scared, she would shut up. She is pretending to be scared because this is moral preening.

Now follows some questions where the would-be Socrates pretends to be the Man from Mars, who does not know what color the sky is on this planet, or any other fact of common knowledge.

As a lawyer, I think we should pass a law expelling anyone living in our commonwealth who has such deliberate ignorance about the laws under which we live to be pitched from a helicopter into the Bermuda Triangle, to let the sharks, Cubans or currents decide his fate. )

Do you believe that any gun law will take away your constitutional rights?


Do you believe in current gun laws? Do you think they are being enforced? If not, explain.

Damn skippy they’re being enforced. That’s why it takes me, a peace officer and an honourably-discharged member of the United States military, five days for your so-called “Instant Check” to clear me.

(Later in the conversation, it just gets elliptical. Skippy the wonder pumpkin is puzzled as to why his junk science and bogus number magic is not impressing the grown up.)

Do you believe that all law-abiding citizens are careful with their guns and would never shoot anybody?

You mean never shooting anybody, or never shooting anybody who needs it? I believe that all law-abiding citizens are human, and thus, not perfect. That’s not a reason to ban their guns, though.

Do you believe that people who commit suicide with a gun should be included in the gun statistics?

I don’t think there should be gun statistics. Statistics are only there to be massaged into giving the person with the statistics the answer they want to see.

Do you believe that accidental gun deaths should “count” in the total numbers?

See above.

(Preach it, brother. I stopped believing arguments based on statistics once I discovered that 91 out of every 80 true Scotsmen and scientists believe in global warming. Or cooling. That the water levels have a three million percent chance of rising over nine quntithousand Flemish ells before the next sixscore fortnights due the chlorofluorocarbons in aerosol sprays, and that all India will be starving by 1980, unless steps are taken now to abolish free enterprise and limited government!

7 out of 12 statistics are wrong. You heard it here first. )

Do you believe that 30,000 gun deaths a year is too many?

Compared to what? Compared to the number of traffic fatalities, it’s minuscule. Compared to the number of swimming pool fatalities, it’s still a small number. Compared to the number of people killed each year by medical malpractice it’s tiny. Compared to the number of people beaten to death each year by a pyromaniac midget with an ivory elephant goad, it’s a large number.

(What a maroon. Since violent crime goes down rather than up the more guns are in the general population, the question is stupid even on its own terms. Too many for what? To make me beg for Stalin or Mao to rule us? Because that is the alternative to gun ownership: the only alternative.

Later, the delicious, delicious cake of gun rights is introduced into the conversation.)

Will you continue a reasonable discussion towards an end that might lead somewhere or is this an exercise in futility?

Since what you consider to be reasonable isn’t even in the same plane of reality with what I consider reasonable, probably not.

Allow me to explain.

I hear a lot about “compromise” from your camp … except, it’s not compromise.

Let’s say I have this cake. It is a very nice cake, with “GUN RIGHTS” written across the top in lovely floral icing. Along you come and say, “Give me that cake.”

I say, “No, it’s my cake.”

You say, “Let’s compromise. Give me half.” I respond by asking what I get out of this compromise, and you reply that I get to keep half of my cake.

Okay, we compromise. Let us call this compromise The National Firearms Act of 1934.

There I am with my half of the cake, and you walk back up and say, “Give me that cake.”

I say, “No, it’s my cake.”

You say, “Let’s compromise.” What do I get out of this compromise? Why, I get to keep half of what’s left of the cake I already own.

So, we have your compromise — let us call this one the Gun Control Act of 1968 — and I’m left holding what is now just a quarter of my cake.

And I’m sitting in the corner with my quarter piece of cake, and here you come again. You want my cake. Again.

This time you take several bites — we’ll call this compromise the Clinton Executive Orders — and I’m left with about a tenth of what has always been MY DAMN CAKE and you’ve got nine-tenths of it.

Then we compromised with the Lautenberg Act (nibble, nibble), the HUD/Smith and Wesson agreement (nibble, nibble), the Brady Law (NOM NOM NOM), the School Safety and Law Enforcement Improvement Act (sweet tap-dancing Freyja, my finger!)

I’m left holding crumbs of what was once a large and satisfying cake, and you’re standing there with most of MY CAKE, making anime eyes and whining about being “reasonable”, and wondering “why we won’t compromise”.

I’m done with being reasonable, and I’m done with compromise. Nothing about gun control in this country has ever been “reasonable” nor a genuine “compromise”.


My comment: Notice how snarky, disconnected, and illogical the questions are: girlish attempts to shame him (don’t call me names!) questions of absurd unreality (you don’t actually believe any law can be unconstitutional, do you?) questions of appalling dishonesty (you don’t actually think we mean to ban your guns, you do?) and rhetorical posing and self-petting questions devoid of any content (is x amount of gun deaths too many??)

Five years ago, or ten, I would have thought it worthwhile to argue against guncontrol in hopes of swaying the fence sitters. No longer. The matter is too obvious, and the stakes are too desperate.

Gun ownership is the touchstone: know a man’s view on that, and you know his view on human nature. Either he trusts his fellow man enough to treat them as free and equal fellow citizens, or he mistrusts his fellow man, and seeks the illusionary protection of a tyrant to whom he will sell his soul in return for the joy of seeing fetters on his fellow subjects, whom he regards are more dangerous than criminals, mad dogs, mad bombers, terrorists, and tyrants.

Consider: each time another group of unarmed victims is gunned down in a gun-free zone the gun-grabber blame us, blame me, blame the NRA, blame the Second Amendment, blame the act of self defense for the crime, and the first and only thing they urge is disarming MORE victims.

You cannot reason someone out of a conclusion they were not reasoned into.