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Conservatives have a lot of myths about the Old West, starting with the gun thing but also including the "you built that" mythos of radical individual effort. Even Laura Ingalls Wilder's daughter Rose was guilty of this, (for instance) editing all mentions of Pa Ingalls' government subsidy checks out of her mother's manuscripts. Rose Wilder Lane went on to be one of the founders of the Libertarian movement and a friend to Ayn Rand. Seems inevitable.
Posted by Pope Buck I on December 17, 2012 at 8:08 AM · Report this
Guns are not the problem. They need to be guided by a person to do damage.

Neglectful parents who (to their benefit) didn't learn how to model constructive and pro-social behavior for their children are a dangerous, growing phenomenon in our society.

Who's regulating/monitoring parenting skills? Because we become parents doesn't give us a "free ticket" from having mental health and interpersonal communication issues which need attention.

Metaphoric to a person who seeks to acquire a gun - a parent who is not "qualified" (has no "background check" or monitoring done for parenting/communication skills) is potentially very dangerous. Further, parents "wrap their hands around" a child, guide/"aim" their direction, and, ultimately, pull the trigger.

What we really need to give our attention to is not the gun, but who's behind the trigger?
Posted by friendlyneighborhood on December 17, 2012 at 8:18 AM · Report this
@2 while it is true that 'guns don't kill people' in the literal sense, it is also true that the easy access to guns, their efficiency for their designed purpose (killing) and the culture that glorifies their use and promotes revenge fantasies all contribute to these events. And contrary to popular belief, people are no more or less irresponsible in raising their children then they ever were. Comparing the raising of children to gun ownership is the height of absurdity.
Posted by dbgill56 on December 17, 2012 at 9:00 AM · Report this
The Motive

Today, some highly paid, brainless twit on the Wall Street Journal News Online, reported that police were searching for the motive for the mass murder of children at a Connecticut elementary school.

The motive?

An Afghanistani sheep herder returned to his home and found the scattered body parts of his wife and children. He gathered up their remains and gave them a proper burial, then sat and pondered the motive of the Americans who sent the drone to do that horrible killing.

The motive?

The super-rich laid off workers and offshored their jobs to the cheapest sweatshop in Bangladesh and workers there died horribly due to extremely substandard conditions, and Walmart falsely claims no knowledge of the location of their factories nor origins of the product.

The motive?

A major war occurs among European countries and an extraordinary number of soldiers die a horrible death from mustard gas, while Paul Warburg was the vice chairman of the Federal Reserve Bank (less publicity at that position, he had been offered the chairmanship) and Paul’s brother, Max Warburg, was the financial advisor to the Kaiser (the German ruler) and director of the German central bank.

The motive?

Many eons ago, in an Asian war, the team I was with was ordered to destroy a village of innocents to cover up a command mistake --- instead, we fragged the brigadier general who was on site and had issued the order, then blamed his death on “the enemy.”

Our motive was clear: murder the guilty to save the innocent.

I make no claim to understand the motives of the mentally ill, the psychopaths and the greedheads, but perhaps the answer lies close at hand.

The president of the University of Washington once clerked for Supreme Court Justice Rehnquist when he rendered the decision to empty out mental institutions and set the stage for defunding mental health in America, perhaps that UW president knows the motive?…

Posted by sgt_doom on December 17, 2012 at 10:19 AM · Report this
Here's some additional backstory on guns in America: Gundamentalist. Interesting that this word has been around and reinvented several times in the more than 80 years of its known published existence. All with good reason, and for the same r…
Posted by rabbitbrush on December 17, 2012 at 10:32 AM · Report this
Fnarf 7
@1, good point. The settlement of the West was a wholly-subsidized endeavor, and not just in the "Wild" period. During its early statehood, Arizona (the most Republican of states) received more than $20 of federal largesse for every dollar it paid in taxes. THAT'S what made the West come alive.

And in the Wild West, it wasn't handguns or rifles that brought white civilization, it was white civilization -- teachers, pianos, shoe stores and groceries and town doctors and government offices.
Posted by Fnarf on December 17, 2012 at 10:38 AM · Report this
bgk 8
I loved this podcast. I support the trade in your guns for a token as discussed.
Posted by bgk on December 17, 2012 at 10:45 AM · Report this
@1, Are you sure Pa Ingalls got a government subsidy check? We know he got a free quarter section due to the Homestead Act.
Posted by Emily68 on December 17, 2012 at 1:27 PM · Report this

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