Paul Revere by Cyrus Dallin, North End, Boston




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Saturday, January 19, 2013

Gun Appreciation Day, January 19, 2013

December 14, 2012 - January 19, 2013

Thirty-six days after 20 six and seven year old children and six adults were slaughtered by firearms, the NRA and others are promoting a Gun Appreciation Day.  

Because a nation saturated with enough firearms for almost every man, woman, and child doesn't appreciate guns enough.

Because having a Gun Appreciation Day during the week that Americans celebrate the anniversary of the birth of the Reverend Martin Luther King, Jr. is what his family and those who love and respect him would deem a thoughtful and fitting tribute to a beloved American hero who was murdered by a gun.  

Because having Gun Appreciation Day the weekend before our first bi-racial president takes his second oath of office--a president who has had more death threats than any other president in our country's history is respectful of the office of the president of the United States.

Because the families of the victims of Aurora, Colorado, Virginia Tech, Casas Adobes, Arizona, Oak Creek, Wisconsin, and numberless other cities and towns across America would like to show how appreciative they are of what millions of guns can do to their lives. 

Because having a Gun Appreciation Day that, in the twisted mentality of the morons who planned this atrocity, is the sensitive and proper way to celebrate the more than 30,000 deaths from firearms this country sustains every year.

"Firearms enthusiasts around the country are being encouraged to head down to their local gun shops on Saturday, constitutions and American flags in hand, to send a message to President Barack Obama about Second Amendment rights -- and, of course, to buy more guns. 

 The event is being billed as Gun Appreciation Day and has backing from white supremacist group American Third Position (A3P), Media Matters reported on Friday. A3P, which is listed on the Gun Appreciation Day website as a sponsor, does little through its own content to veil the fact that the political movement is dedicated to white supremacy. 

 In its mission statement, A3P writes that it "believes that government policy in the United States discriminates against white Americans, the majority population, and that white Americans need their own political party to fight this discrimination." It goes on, saying that the group aims to "stop the immigrant invasion" in order to put "America first!"

Yes.  This is exactly what the United States of America needs to do after burying those school children and adults a month ago.  We need to show the world how much we appreciate our guns.

The Right Calls Obama a Dictator, but Sarah Palin Disarmed the Alaska Civil Militia

Martin Luther King Did Not Agree With Gun Nuts and the NRA on the 2nd Amendment



Rational Nation USA said...

I appreciate my right to own and keep firearms RESPONSIBLY. Always have and always will.

I really fail to see a rational argument or practical purpose for this. Other than creating another moment for the NRA and "affiliates" to continue masturbating themselves into a frenzy.

Not unlike some folks on the left.

Shaw Kenawe said...

When someone gratuitously adds "like or unlike some folks on the left," I usually ask for evidence to support that claim.

What did the left ever do that is comparable to this Gun Appreciation Day nonsense?

When did it come up with an insult as crass as this one just after a national tragedy?

Sandy Hook was an horrendous trauma to this country. According to recent polls, a majority of Americans want something done to address gun violence, and a majority of Americans SUPPORT the provisions President Obama laid out in his speech last Wednesday.

When has the left engaged in such an "in your face" reaction to a national tragedy?

You seem compelled to have to add a "the left does it too" to every idiocy the right perpetrates.

I'm just wondering why you do that.

Rational Nation USA said...

Well Shaw, I view the NRA precisely as I said. I will also add I made the personal decision to quit the NRA and stop donating to the organization years ago.

And Shaw, if you are not able to see that some folks on the left, and please note I said some folks both here and in my prior comment not "the left" as you read it, take a trip over to some lefty sites where commenters are actually calling for repealing the 2'nd amendment.

So, I hope you can understand my adverse reaction to those on either side that use these tragedies to further their political agenda.

Finding answers and solutions are by far more important. The NRA needs new leadership, a new rational message, and the ability to listen. At times this can be said of everyone.

Republican Racism said...

"When has the left engaged in such an "in your face" reaction to a national tragedy?

You seem compelled to have to add a "the left does it too" to every idiocy the right perpetrates.

I'm just wondering why you do that."

Interesting question. To Bad RN refused to answer it, but not surprising.

News Flash said...

Newly Hired Armed School Guard Leaves Gun Unattended In Bathroom

Silverfiddle said...

Tin-eared NRA PR ignorance aside, what are responsible gun owners supposed to do?

Sit silently as they are pilloried form all corners? People are going to stand up for their rights.

Should we declare a day of no driving in honor of all the tragic automobile deaths?

You've struck a fairly reasonable stance, Shaw, but the tone is shrill and emotion-laden from some corners, and of course gun owners are going to respond.

Christian Fearing God-Man had a pretty good take on all of it, and his post ended up sparking some heated conversation.

This was part of my favorite comment, from someone fed up with being lumped in with rampaging murderers:

Guns are dangerous, I have acknowledged this countless times.

Guns are dangerous.

Guns are dangerous.

Guns are dangerous.

Now. Do you own a car?

A Knife?

A baseball bat?

A hammer?

A Bottle of Johnnie Walker Black label?

Get Rx's from a Doctor?

All that s#*t is dangerous too. Yet I don't see you or anyone else screaming from the rooftops or the throne of utopia about how we need to get rid of anything else.

I particularly loved the "throne of utopia" line. I've got to remember that so I can steal it at some future date.

We should appreciate all of our rights. A right is not denigrated just because scum buckets also avail themselves of them.

Should we abandon free speech because a few anti-Muslim loons burn korans and make stupid YouTube videos?

Shaw Kenawe said...

Some of those comparisons are not valid.

For example, I have lived most of my life without a gun, but I would have had a difficult time living it without a car. Cars are necessary. Guns are not.

Hunting is a sport, and a necessity in very, very few instances. Alcohol the same. No one NEEDS alcohol to live. Hammers and knives? Yes. Necessary. Rx from docs. Yes.

We have to live with the accidents that are part of owning cars, which we need to get to and from work, the grocery store, school, the doctor's office, and the football field. Plus cars a heavily regulated by inspections, licensing, and in some states, taxed. And there are all sorts of mandated safety features in them.

The NRA has fought and won any legislation for gun safety, regulation, etc.

Responsible gun owners are not the problem. The problem is with unenforced laws and organizations like the NRA that want unfettered gun privileges for anyone and everyone anywhere.

The NRA is responsible for initiating a law that prevented pediatricians from asking parents if their guns were locked up safely! The NRA is responsible for sponsoring legislation that prevented research into the causes of gun violence!

The NRA has overstepped what it was organized to do. It is clearly not for gun safety and education. It has become the lackey for the firearms industry.

Shaw Kenawe said...

PS. Free speech is regulated.

Try making a joke about a bomb while you're on a airplane, and see where your free speech gets you.

Silverfiddle said...

I think we all agree that some regulation poses no problem.

Funny thing is, driving on public roads is a privilege, while gun ownership is a preexisting right, so I agree with you that the comparison is not exact.

The NRA is responsible for initiating a law that prevented pediatricians from asking parents if their guns were locked up safely! The NRA is responsible for sponsoring legislation that prevented research into the causes of gun violence!

The pediatrician thing is window dressing. What if a kid says his parents have loaded guns laying all over the house, then what? Send in the swat team to violate a family's 4th Amendment rights?

I coached my kids from earliest childhood how to answer snooping government questions, so it's just another feel-good measure that doesn't accomplish anything.

Causes of gun violence? Criminals + guns = gun violence.

Anonymous said...

I wonder why he chose a military assault rifle instead of a bat, or a knife to kill 20 children and 8 adults? When was the last time there was a multiple death killing using a hammer? Killers chose guns because guns were made to kill.

S.W. Anderson said...

I follow things a lot on MSNBC and C-SPAN. I have repeatedly heard on both care being taken to not lump all gun owners in with crazies and killers. I have repeatedly heard calls from the administation, Democrats in Congress and on MSNBC (hosts and guests) urging responsible gun owners, hunters, dealers, etc., to enter into rational discussions about how to do a better job of keeping guns out of the wrong hands, limiting magazine capacity and keeping combat arms in the hands of soldiers and police, where those arms are necessary and where those who use them receive the proper training in their handling and use.

I don't doubt some on the left would like to see the Second Amendment right to own a gun ended. All across this country there are people who've lost a loved one, friend, neighbor, classmate or co-worker to gun violence. Some of the lost loved ones were children. Some were parents. The pain of irreplaceable loss lives on long after the tears have dried and the reality is accepted. Pain is well known for trumping cool rationality.

NRA extremists pushing Gun Appreciation Day ought to be ashamed of themselves. They ought to thank President Obama and Vice President Biden. That's because the sensible, moderate reforms the Obama administration put forth could end up preserving arguably the broadest gun freedoms on the planet.

Hear me clearly on this, because it has the force of history behind it. An aroused, convinced and determined American public has the power to backlash those broadest gun rights into something that would look a lot like Japan or Britain's gun restrictions. It can happen here, and a few more Tucson, Aurora and Newtown-type massacres, and it almost certainly will happen here.

From the 1840's-1850's, abolitionists aroused the conscience and fired the determination of people throughout the northern states that slavery was evil and must end. Before it was over with we had fought a bloody Civil War to make that happen. Between 640,000 and 700,000 Americans died on both sides settling the matter, 50,000 at Gettysburg alone.

From the late 1930's to the mid-1960's, some very brave, determined people of color carried out a sustained campaign to secure their civil rights, to become first-class citizens in the country they had helped build and defend. They called on the conscience of millions across the country. It was a long, hard struggle, but eventually an aroused, convinced public did the right thing, supporting integration of the military, then the Civil Rights and Voting Rights acts, then equal rights in schools, colleges, workplaces and neighborhoods everywhere. And, those black and brown Americans waged their struggles with peaceful demonstrations, rallies, marches and the singing of hymns. Throughout, they heeded constant reminders from a preacher who led their cause that violence would only empower their oppressors, would only generate more violence. They heeded that advice in spite of suffering beatings, arrests, imprisonment and sometimes murder.

Public sentiment, when solidified and impassioned, is a tsunami that can sweep away every status-quo thing in its path. The selfish ignoramuses of the NRA leadership and its most extreme elements could have to reckon with that one day soon. What Obama is trying to do could spare them the experience. Cockamamie Gun Appreciation Day events never will.

Shaw Kenawe said...

"Causes of gun violence? Criminals + guns = gun violence."

Adam Lanza was NOT a criminal, nor was Loughner, nor Holmes of the Aurora slaughter, nor the perpetrator of the Ft. Hood massacre.

They were disturbed individuals who easily got their hands on firearms.

SWA is correct. The American people are on President Obama's side.

Shaw Kenawe said...

"Criminals + guns = gun violence"

No. Not just criminals and disturbed young men.

Stupid people + guns = gun vilence.

There's an almost endless supply of them.

Anonymous said...

Rep Nolan (D-MN) said, “Chris, I think it would be a mistake, however, to underestimate the kind of toxic effect that the NRA is having. I have never, ever in all my life feared for my security, and I’m not fearful of it now. But I’m a little more than I ever had been before. We’ve been getting a lot of not very thinly veiled threats and calls into my office. You know, things like, ‘you tell Nolan he better watch his back. Nobody has actually come out and said they’re gunning for me, but the messages are quite angry, vitriolic, and a little bit frightening to people at my front desk who have been taking the calls. So, I’m a little nervous about it. I’ve never been nervous before. They’re very toxic in the effect they’re having on the American public.”

This is straight out of the right’s playbook. We have now moved on to the part of the process when the Republican base has been whipped into fear by the NRA and their Fox News led conservative media, so they are now threatening Democratic members of Congress.

Silverfiddle said...

By definition, one who commits a crime is a criminal, so Loughner et al are criminals.

And stupid people + cars = automobile violence, right?

Every person who causes a car accident is an idiot, right?

Jerry Critter said...

It would be nice to identify the Loughners of the country BEFORE they kill people, not afterwards when they are criminals.

BB-Idaho said...

High firepower, high muzzle velocity, huge mag weapons are a right established by Jefferson
(who also started the NRA) and they
are SO convenient .

Silverfiddle said...

@ Jerry: "It would be nice to identify the Loughners of the country BEFORE they kill people, not afterwards when they are criminals."

Yes it would. The question is, can we do it without violating people's rights?

On the one hand, the mother of the Sandy Hook killer knew he was certifiable. Did she keep her guns locked up, and he got the combo or the keys and got to them? Or did she leave then unsecured with a crazy person in the house?

I haven't heard what happened there.

There are quiet changes going on. My daughter is in her first semester of college, and there is a program where if you think someone is not right in the head, you anonymously identify that person. It goes into some kind of college clearinghouse, and school councilors may approach the person and ask if he needs help.

It's a good idea, but it could also take on creepy, Soviet-era overtones, so I don't know what the answer is.

On the other hand, we have that heartbreaking story in HuffPo written by the mom of a mentally ill son, and she is on her own, with no mechanism in place to institutionalize him or get him the help he needs.

I share your concern about identifying people who need help.

For every one who picks up a gun or does something violent, there are thousands more with mental illness who do no harm to anyone and who are just trying to live a productive life. They also need help.

Shaw Kenawe said...

SF, I don't think it's useful for this discussion on what can be done to reduce gun deaths to make a comparison between firearms and automobiles.

As I've explained, that comparison doesn't work since people can live their entire lives without owning guns--many in my family have. But if you live in the country or suburbs, you can't really live your life without a car.

Guns are NOT as necessary for living a life as are motor vehicles.

And yes, I understand that people in lonely remote areas feel safer with firearms. Still, they can live in remote areas without them, can't they.

BB-Idaho said...

SF has some good points on the mentally ill/violence potential/privacy rights: my professor daughter has had overt
student threats through the years.
It worries both teachers and students and we saw a good example with Loughner and his weird and threatening outbursts in a classroom setting.
When comparing automobiles and firearms, we need consider the demographic data: 90% of us own
a car or truck-there are 243 million registered vehicles and some few million more in junk yards. 32% percent of our households have guns, there are
310 million of them, 20% of us
have 65% of those. While autos
are ubiquitous, firearms distribution features fewer owners and among them people with multiple
guns..collectors, hobby folks, etc.
..try doing a concealed carry with
your Toyota. In my area, stolen firearms is more of a problem than stolen vehicles..and we are quite

Silverfiddle said...

A death is a death, Shaw.

As I've already said, driving and owning a gun are not equivalent. One is a privilege and one is a right, so on the larger point we agree.

What I take issue with is the notion that gun owners should sit in shameful silence while other publicly lecture and demonize them.

So if we are to observe some public atonement ritual for gun deaths, should we not do the same for other categories of death? Or are gun deaths to be elevated above all others?

This national debate is extremely emotional. I inserted the Christian Fearing God Man excerpt to show some fiery emotion from the other side, and funny enough, the author does not own guns.

Let the debate continue, but let's stay focused on tangible solutions like storage, background checks and mental health and laws that punish gun crimes.

Classifying and categorizing whole groups of people, from either side ("gun nuts," "gun grabbers"), only serves to further poison the waters and hinder productive conversation. And yes, I plead guilty to my own overindulgence in hyperbole and purple rhetoric directed at my ideological foes.

BB-Idaho said...

'What I take issue with is the notion that gun owners should sit in shameful silence while other publicly lecture and demonize them.''re talking to a pipe smoker, demonized and sitting in
shameful silence.

BB-Idaho said...

There seem to be gun nuts and their
It has gotten to the point that if
you have a gun, you are one of them. If you don't, you are one of

Silverfiddle said...

BB: It's lamentable, isn't it?

When did we get in the habit of getting into each others' personal business?