Gun control is a kind of oxymoron. Like noise control, or birth control, crowd control, mind control….it’s a lot of weight to put on the objects which are, I note, all kind of chancey, amorphous, out-there things covering mucho territory and it never much works.
Right now as we speak, the elected boys and girls in Washington, DC, who have no control over their sexual improprieties, no control over banking, and no control over what the people who work under or over them are capable of doing……are sitting in some gleaming room where uncontrolled catering and overtime pay are in florid abundance, discussing…control! Let’s us just imagine how this feverish determination to take guns from American citizens might play out. They’ve got to be touching on that part. Maybe.
Let’s say Joe (He Ain’t Takin’ My Guns) (quintessential good old boy) Biden who’s the committee ringmaster, looking fierce, a protector of a kinder, un-armed America, says,
”NO GUNS! Nowhere! We take all the guns, we get ’em in a big pile like in the Capital Dome…NO in FRONT OF THE LINCOLN MEMORIAL! And we got all the guns from everywhere in America and we burn ’em! Big fire! Wowsa. All the networks!! Primetime! That’s what we need to do!”
And some guy on the committee (who is later found dead in a park) says, Well Mr Vice President, well…how do we GET all the guns?
Well, indeed. How. Will it be an enforceable law.
Wednesday. Okay, let’s say there’s a law up for a vote and everybody in the House and Senate, unanimously, votes NO on private gun ownership.
Thursday, from every town hall in America with their lists of registered gun owners, letters go out: YOU HAVE 3 DAYS TO SURRENDER YOUR GUNS.
MONDAY. The town sheriff shows up at your door with a piece of paper that says, Sam… you own three handguns and a hunting rifle. Sam gives the sheriff the hunting rifle and says he lost the handguns, but sure, come on in and search the house. Nobody spots the handguns. Bear in mind this is being played out in communities all over America. In communities that can no longer afford to pay the local police force because the town just declared bankruptcy. Maybe we get to call it Black Monday.
TUESDAY. Hmm, back to the drawing board. We need more muscle, says Washington. How about all these returning soldiers? They know how to follow orders, they’re all good at search and seizure. So the homecoming troops get deployed to Happy Valley, and Sleepy Hollow, and Metropolis to collect newly unauthorized weapons.
They have to ride around in something, let’s put them in tanks. And keep the uniforms, looks impressive. Somewhere on a cul-de-sac in suburbia a gun accidentally goes off when a search is taking place and somebody’s grandma and the two-year old toddler she’s holding get shot in the head. Whoops. Big PR mess. Let’s say a month of this has gone by and now. The population’s getting antsy. Brothers and fathers and grandparents are non-compliant, being thrown in jail, better build some new ones. And the family isn’t eating anymore, the breadwinner’s gone. When the law shows up at Sam’s cousin’s house, he’s moved to another state. With his guns. Uh, better set up roadblocks. And require transit papers. But, er, no photo i.d.
What about particular target cities? Detroit, now the murder capital of America due specifically to unregistered illegal weapons, what happens when that escalates into booby-trapped apartments, and shootouts on stairwells and streets. And with the housing projects of Brooklyn, PDiddy’s right hand man, the gangs in Fresno, Brad Pitt’s bodyguards, Paramount Studios, the Salinas boys, the Oklahoma homies, Gwynnie Paltrow’s nannies, the Georgia moonshiners, Mayor Bloomberg, the Tucson drug runners, the Montana cattle ranchers. Between American civilians and American soldiers. Well Congress, some fine mess you’ve gotten us into.
Many years ago in NYC, midtown Manhattan, I observed about 25 fellow citizens waiting at a bus stop. The line was long and totally screwy, not a line of anything by any standard. I’d just come back from London where everyone followed the rules, and if you were told to walk on the left descending stairs and on the right climbing, you did. I looked at the NYers in line and happily laughed. Not here, I thought. Not in this country not ever. You can make all the rules you want and Americans will pay attention….if it suits them and their own common sense.