Paul Revere by Cyrus Dallin, North End, Boston



Thursday, January 31, 2013


This is rich. 

Over at Western Hero the other day contributor Finntann was beating up on some guy who advocates shaming people into dieting so that they won't have to deal with diabetes, heart disease, and other obesity-related maladies that could kill them. In addition to finding this the dreaded, over-the-top Nanny Statism, the consensus over at W.H. was that this was tantamount to Stalinism as well.

Well, it's a good bet that Fainting Couch Finntann won't be all huffy and puffy over the nut who wants to MANDATE gun instruction for first graders. 

Because the idiot who proposed this thinks that every six-year-old who takes this course will dutifully report the unsecured gun to an adult and not, on impulse, pick it up to see what it's about.

Because all six-year-olds understand responsibility and will remember to NOT touch that pretty, shiny gun that looks just like a toy.  And because there's always an adult around for six-year olds to report to.  

Apparently the starry-eyed Stalinist who proposed this legislation believes all children are being brought up in homes where responsible adults are available for little kids to report unsecured guns to at all times.

Here's where the Nanny-Statist who proposed this legislation should direct his gun safety requirement:  At all adults who purchase a firearm and all adults who own a firearm.  Any adult who stupidly leaves a loaded firearm unsecured in the home where children live or visit should receive mandatory jail sentences.  It is the adults who are the problem, not the children.  They are the victims of the gun-crazy adults who haven't the sense to secure their deadly weapons. 

Over 1400 deaths by firearms since Sandy Hook, December 14, 2013.  Many of them children.

"Missouri state Senate is considering a bill that would require all first graders in the state to take a gun safety training course. 

Using a grant provided by the National Rifle Association, it would put a “National Rifle Association’s Eddie Eagle Gunsafe Program” instructor in every first grade classroom. 

Pushing for its passage, Sen. Dan Brown, R-Rolla, told the Senate General Laws Committee Tuesday that his bill was an effort to teach young children what to do if they come across an unsecured weapon.

[...] “I hate mandates as much as anyone, but some concerns and conditions rise to the level of needing a mandate,” Brown said. 

Senators watched a brief segment of the training video during the hearing. The segment featured a cartoon eagle telling children to step away from an unsecured gun and immediately report it to an adult."

Mother Jones: "A Killing Machine": Half of All Mass Shooters Used High-Capacity MagazinesMagazines holding more than 10 rounds were used in 31 of the 62 massacres.

"In the wake of the massacres this year at a Colorado movie theater, a Sikh temple in Wisconsin, and Sandy Hook Elementary School in Connecticut, we [Mother Jones] set out to track mass shootings in the United States over the last 30 years. We identified and analyzed 62 of them, and one striking pattern in the data is this: In not a single case was the killing stopped by a civilian using a gun. And in other recent (but less lethal) rampages in which armed civilians attempted to intervene, those civilians not only failed to stop the shooter but also were gravely wounded or killed. 

Moreover, we found that the rate of mass shootings has increased in recent years—at a time when America has been flooded with millions of additional firearms and a barrage of new laws has made it easier than ever to carry them in public places, including bars, parks, and schools. America has long been heavily armed relative to other societies, and our arsenal keeps growing. A precise count isn't possible because most guns in the United States aren't registered and the government has scant ability to track them, thanks to a legislative landscape shaped by powerful pro-gun groups such as the National Rifle Association." --Mother Jones


Anonymous said...

Joe Scarborough has a message for those who are defending assault weapons, “If you go out and try to defend assault weapons, then you end up looking like a jackass.”

Silverfiddle said...

Once again, I congratulate you for your anit-statist stance. We're working on you Shaw!

Now if you could begin focusing on consistency.

I'll leave it to Finntann to defend himself, since he doesn't need my help, and trust me, I've known him for over ten years, he is not a couch fainter.

Also, he is now the chief writer and editor in chief at Western Hero.

Shaw Kenawe said...

I just wondered where he was on this government proposed mandate. He was shawney-on-the-spot with his pearl-clutching on the fat-shaming guy. Shouldn't he be consistent?

Now I'm not suggesting he write on subjects that I deem worthy. I'm just chuckling at how outraged he was about Mr. Callahan--who is NOT a legislator--and his Nanny State proposal, and within days, this guy comes up with a mandated Nanny State proposal for 6-year olds.

It is a circus, innit?

Anonymous said...

Deciding any issue raised by Western Hero deserves attention, is your mistake. Become a serious person and stop thinking the extremists are worth discussing.

BB-Idaho said...

Statism has been around since the
early Neolithic Age. I suppose there may be a reason some would like to return....

Silverfiddle said...

"It is a circus, innit?"

Yes it is, and the nanny state clowns of all parties keep it spinning.

Ducky's here said...

Chalk up early childhood learning as another topic the fringe right absolutely does not understand.

The question is whether responsible conservatives (there must be some hiding out there) can complete the purge of the extreme.

Dave Miller said...

Silver, I think one of differences between lefty inconsistency and righty inconsistency is that the left does not seem, to me at least, to call that inconsistency a lack of a moral core or convictions.

Lefty's seem okay with evolving on an issue, yet the right has made movement to a more nuanced or informed position a liability for people on all sides of the issue.

I will have to admit that I find a perverse joy in the trouble this often brings people on the right who have boxed themselves in on this issue.

How does someone on the right, when faced with a need to evolve, like a Mr Hannity on immigration, make that move without rightly being seen as making a political change?

He has been one of the biggest proponents of mocking lefty's when they change their position.

Of course us left leaning people are sometimes inconsistent, but we don;t claim that consistency is a quality of leadership, choosing instead to be flexible as needed to meet changing demands.

Shaw Kenawe said...

"A foolish consistency is the hobgoblin of little minds, adored by little statesmen and philosophers and divines. With consistency a great soul has simply nothing to do. He may as well concern himself with his shadow on the wall. Speak what you think now in hard words, and to-morrow speak what to-morrow thinks in hard words again, though it contradict every thing you said to-day. — 'Ah, so you shall be sure to be misunderstood.' — Is it so bad, then, to be misunderstood? Pythagoras was misunderstood, and Socrates, and Jesus, and Luther, and Copernicus, and Galileo, and Newton, and every pure and wise spirit that ever took flesh. To be great is to be misunderstood."

Ralph Waldo Emerson, essay on "Self-Reliance"

Shaw Kenawe said...

And this:

"But what if high levels of gun ownership make death in your own family more likely? Is there evidence that high gun ownership is related to higher levels of suicide? There is. A study of seven New England Northeastern states with varying gun laws and suicide rates came to this conclusion:

The strong and positive correlation between firearm prevalence and suicide was accounted for by substantially elevated firearm suicide rates in states with higher levels of firearm ownership. This association held for the population as a whole and for every age group. By contrast, aggregate rates of nonfirearm suicides in states with higher firearm ownership did not differ across the seven states.

One key reason is that of all methods of suicide, guns are by far the most effective in actually killing you:

Of all suicide attempts, suicide by firearm accounted for only 5%, while poisoning/cutting/piercing accounted for 85%. However, the fatality rate for attempts varies wildly. Overall, 13% of all attempts were successful, while 91% of gun attempts were successful and only 3% of the poisoning/cutting/piercing attempts were fatal. Suffocation/hanging (6% of all attempts) was successful 80% of the time.

A bigger follow-up study came to the same conclusion."

Ambassador Truth 101 said...

I live across the river from one of the biggest freaking idiot Missouri state senators. A guy named Munzlinger.

All this idiot talks about is gun freedom. May well have been him that proposed this nonsense.

I've always said to win in Missouri you just have to portray yourself as a bigger asshole than your opponent. Hate everything but guns and God and you're in in most of it's districts.

viburnum said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
viburnum said...

IDK Shaw. When I was a kid I was taught not to talk to strangers, not to stick anything in my ear but my elbow, to look both ways before crossing the street, and in a rather pointless piece of prophylaxis, was instructed by Tommy the Turtle to duck and cover when I saw the bright flash of light in the sky.

You wouldn't care to dispense with the first three lessons on the grounds that a 6 yr olds isn't responsible enough to understand would you?

Teaching children what to do if they find a firearm sounds remarkably like sense to me.

viburnum said...

Correction. The turtles name was Bert. Memory and age you know. ;-)

Shaw Kenawe said...

"Teaching children what to do if they find a firearm sounds remarkably like sense to me." --viburnum

I, too, viburnum was taught not to do many things when I was a child. But then, I was a child, and not always able to resist the temptation to "see what would happen." I was curious, and did not always follow adult warnings or instructions. And I'm pretty sure I wasn't the only child whose curiosity overrode adult warnings. For example, when I was 5 or 6, I was taught never to play with matches, but when I found some left on a table, the first thing I did was play with them to see the pretty bright flame flare up all blue and yellow. Luckily I didn't set myself nor the house on fire.

Six year olds are not all alike in their cognitive abilities, and IMO, telling a child not to touch a gun isn't going to protect her from doing so.

What will protect her is to make it a serious crime to leave a gun unsecured in the home.

If there's a gun in the home, one is much more likely to be accidently [or purposely--via suicide] killed by it than by a home invasion.

Finntann said...

What he thinks of it is he thinks it's silly, another progressive (right-wing this time) that thinks it is the responsibility of government to legislate everything. The only thing going in his favor is he is a state and not a federal legislator.

If you want my opinion it should be up to the local school board and administration to decide whether or not it is appropriate based on their particular circumstance.

The program itself seems to be a throwback to the fifties or sixties, and appears to be if not helpful, then at least relatively harmless.

The Eddie Eagle program teaches preschool through third-grade children if they find a gun to:


While not debating the effectiveness of the program, why you would find it objectionable is somewhat puzzling. If you can teach children that age to stop, drop, and roll, why can't you teach them this?

As to the consensus at WH, I think we mainly agreed that it was wrong for government (or for someone to advocate government) to shame obese people in a ridiculous attempt to make them change their behavior.

Stalin wasn't mentioned at all (I went back and checked), I believe what your are referring to is a consensus that shaming the populace to behave in a certain way was characteristic of totalitarian and authoritarian states.

Education is one thing, publicly shaming the citizenry something else entirely.


Rational Nation USA said...

As anticipated from you, the ultimate statist.

Rational Nation USA said...

Shine a light on a dark corner and it is illuminated.

Finntann said...

I'd be curious to see a link to your suicide study. Your citation doesn't actually say that suicides are higher in states that have more firearms, it states "substantially elevated firearm suicide rates in states with higher levels of firearm ownership". I'd be curious to see if the overall per capita suicide attempt rate was higher, lower, or the same.

Obviously, states with more guns are going to have more firearm suicides than states with less guns.

According to

Female suicides by firearms are much lower than male rates. Females commit suicide via poison 38% of the time and by suffocation 20% of the time.

The point being, there are other ways to kill yourself if your are committed to doing so.

If it was the Harvard study, they also acknowledge that "suicide attempts using firearms, which constitute just 5% of all fatal and non-fatal attempts, are highly lethal" I don't think anyone, left or right, is attempting argue that firearms are not lethal.

Anonymous said...

Now, you are Western Hero. They are all here, which makes me wonder why they are not there. Lack of readers I guess, or no liberals to bash.

Rational Nation USA said...

Indeed, and thank you Mr. Emerson.

Rational Nation USA said...

Where can I find the best deal on a horse, saddle, a six shooter, lever action 30/30 , and a cheap motel/saloon?

Rational Nation USA said...

In general this libertarian is in agreement.

Shaw Kenawe said...

Anon, no one here is bashing. I won't allow it.

If all I got as commenters were readers who agreed with me, this would be nothing more than an echo chamber. And boring.

I don't agree with much of the righties and libertarians on Western Hero's blog, but so long as they contribute to a lively discussion and don't engage in ad hominem attacks, I don't see how that diminishes this blog.

Finntann has asked for more data on the suicide issue, which I'll look for and post.

taospeaks said...

Lets see, its a great idea to teach children about guns, especially six year olds.

Its also really nice to believe that children always do what they are told, like "tell an adult." Nothing like training the little statists of tomorrow is it?

Wouldn't it be great to be able to teach children about sex?

Oh, but no, we have to teach them to "JUST SAY NO!"

But we can't teach kids to "JUST SAY NO" to guns can we?

Why is it that when it comes to education, birth control, and all of that, the right always screams about leaving parenting to the parents...but oh, its okay to teach first graders that when their really dumb parents leave their guns on the coffee table that they shouldn't touch and they need to tell an adult.

That adult would be the dumbass that left the gun on the coffee table in the first place.

Yes, the NRA is our friend...

Finntann said...

I think there is a distinct difference between teaching children about guns and teaching children what to do if they find one.

You make it sound like the NRA is teaching six year old children to always aim for the center of mass and double tap your target.

No, it is much better to stick our heads in the sand and pretend guns don't exist.

You know what I think is the problem with the Eddie Eagle program is?

It's sponsored by the NRA and not the Brady Center. If it was a Brady Center program you'd be screaming we need it in all our schools.

Just Sayin

Finntann said...

@ Its also really nice to believe that children always do what they are told, like "tell an adult."

So I suppose we should stop teaching them fire safety and Stop, Drop, Roll

Since they're not going to listen anyway, right?

Rational Nation USA said...

Should'nt we be teaching how to think critically? I mean really, given the problems this generatin has created and will e passing on to the next it just seems to make sense.
\But then again we sem very adept and comfortable with the given realities. Don't we? I mean in all honesty.

Shaw Kenawe said...

"+So I suppose we should stop teaching them fire safety and Stop, Drop, Roll

Since they're not going to listen anyway, right?"

Children grow up with toy guns and shooters in video games. I don't think little ones can discern the difference between the real lethal weapon and the toy. And as I said, how many children would be able to resist picking up the weapon and looking at it, or playfully aiming it at a friend or sibling. That's how they accidentally shoot themselves and others.


According to death certificate data, from 2003 to 2007, more than 680 Americans per year were killed unintentionally with firearms. Data from the National Violent Death Reporting System (which has more comprehensive data on each shooting but currently is operating only in 18 states) show that two thirds of the accidental shooting deaths occurred in someone's home, about half of the victims were younger than 25 years, and half of all deaths were other inflicted—the victim was typically shot accidentally by a friend or family member (eg, brother.)[3] It appears that the large majority of accidental shooting deaths in the home are from guns that were kept in the home.

Children aged 5 to 14 years in the United States have 11 times the likelihood of being killed accidentally with a gun compared with similarly aged children in other developed countries.

The United States has been in this unenviable position for at least the past decade. From 2003 to 2007, the yearly averages of unintentional firearm fatalities were as follows: 62 children aged 0 to 14, 89 youth aged 15 to 19, and 95 young adults aged 20 to 24 years.

Scientific studies show that a gun in the home is a risk factor for suicide. More than a dozen case-control studies have examined the relationship between gun ownership and suicide in the United States, and all find that firearms in the home are associated with substantially and significantly higher rates of suicide.

These and other studies indicate that individuals have especially high risks of suicide if they live in homes with loaded guns and unlocked guns. Having any gun in the home is a risk factor for suicide for everyone in the home—the gun owner, the gun owner's spouse, and the gun owner's children.


Shaw Kenawe said...

And this:

"Author David Hemenway studied the various risks of having a gun in the home, including accidents, suicide, homicide, and intimidation. Additionally, the benefits of having a firearm in a household were also examined and those benefits included deterrence, and thwarting crimes (self-defense). From this in-depth look, it was concluded that homes with guns were not safer or deter more crime than those that do not. In fact, it was found that in homes with children or women, the health risks were even greater."


Finntann said...

And there were 618 bicycle deaths in 2010, in 2005 it was 786.

According to the CDC, the accidental death rate per 100,000 households with a firearm is roughly 2. The death rate by drowning per 100,000 households with a swimming pool is 41.

For those under 15, the accidental death rate per 100,000 by firearm is .2, for swimming pools it's 11.

Obviously having a swimming pool is far more dangerous than having a firearm. Shall we ban those too?

About 700 people die a year on ATVs

In 2005 406 people were killed by lawnmowers

120,000 people a year die from accidental/unintentional injury, firearms are an statistically insignificant contributor. It is one thing to cite a fact or statistic, it is quite another to put it in perspective.

viburnum said...

The US ranks 1st in gun ownership at 88.8 per 100. It ranks 34th in the world in the rate of suicide at 12 per 100,000.

South Korea ranks first in suicides at 31.7 per 100,00 but has only 1.1 guns per one hundred people.

Lithuania which is right behind them at 31.6 per 100K has only 0.7 guns per hundred.

I'd have to say that if you're trying to draw a correlation between gun ownership and suicide the numbers just don't bear that out.

Ducky's here said...

"Teaching children what to do if they find a firearm sounds remarkably like sense to me." --viburnum

Maybe you should teach a six year old where the safety is generally located in case they find dad's gun.

Silverfiddle said...

I am not criticizing people who change positions. If you find out you were wrong, or circumstances change, then one must go where the facts lead.

I find it amusing when progressives cheer on Big Nanny Government as it crushes those things dear to conservatives, but then squall like scaled dogs when *Gasp! and Lilith Forbid!* a dreaded conservative grabs the levers of the Great Government Bulldozer and does the same, only from the right.

I also find it maddening that no one on the left can understand this simple point.

Shaw Kenawe said...

"Gasp! and Lilith Forbid!* a dreaded conservative grabs the levers of the Great Government Bulldozer and does the same, only from the right."

Yes, it does bring on amazement in liberals because all I've heard over the past 4 years from the right is how evil big government is. That's what the controversy is about. It's exactly the opposite, IMO, to what you've described.

Conservatives/Libertarians detest government, except when they want big government to work for them.

Liberals don't think everything the government does is evil and "taking away our freedoms."

That's all I've heard from the con/libertarians since Obama was elected.

Jerry Critter said...

Conservatives drive the Big Government Bulldozer when they believe the means justifies the ends, just like the liberals drive the Big Corporate/Rich Money Train when they believe the means justifies the ends.

Anonymous said...

Curious how all of a sudden the cast of Western Hero, is now commenting at your blog. That's right all speech is holy, no matter how ridiculous. You have no clue of meaningful discussion.

Rational Nation USA said...

Perhaps the issue is you and your elitist BS Anon the no name the cowardly one.

Rational Nation USA said...

Well said Jerry.

Silverfiddle said...

"Conservatives/Libertarians detest government, except when they want big government to work for them."

Tut tut... A libertarian is very different from a conservative.

I know many, myself included, are a combination of the two, but your comment is incorrect as it pertains to libertarians.

A libertarian decries all illegitimate acts of government.

Liberals and Conservatives only decry illegitimate acts take by their ideological opponents.

Silverfiddle said...

@ Jerry: "Conservatives drive the Big Government Bulldozer when they believe the means justifies the ends, just like the liberals drive the Big Corporate/Rich Money Train when they believe the means justifies the ends."

Yes! Jerry gets it!

Anonymous said...

All these ex-Republicans calling themselves Libertarians, is a laugh. They have been voting Republican for 30 years, and are part of the problem. Like rats leaving a sinking ship, they are disgusting.

Anonymous said...

SF and RN are good examples of the extremist on this issue

Shaw Kenawe said...

More on the availability of guns and suicide rates:

In 2006, after years of suicides among young men in the Israel Defense Forces, authorities forbade the troops from bringing their rifles home on weekends. Suicides dropped by 40 percent, according to a 2010 study by psychiatrists with the IDF and the Sheba Medical Center.

Those attempting suicide for the most part act on impulse, often after surprisingly brief periods of deliberation. But the impulse also passes. A survey of people who deliberated about killing themselves but did not act found that for about half, the suicidal period lasted less than an hour, according to Miller.
Among people who made near-lethal attempts, 24 percent took less than five minutes between the decision to kill themselves and the actual attempt. Seventy percent took less than an hour, according to a 2001 University of Houston study of 153 survivors.

Although people who attempt suicide often suffer from psychological distress, Miller said, they don’t act until a “last straw” — a loss, a humiliation, an arrest.
“That’s the time when you can lose control of your ability to act in a sensible way,” he said. “When you are at your wits’ end, what you can reach for determines whether you live or die. All you have to do to die is lose control for one minute.
“If you’re in a house with a gun, there’s a lot more of a chance you’re going to die,” he said.
Living in a home with a gun increases the suicide death risk two- to 10-fold, Miller said.
Firearms were used in 68 percent of Army suicides in 2010, according to an Army Health and Violence report released this year. Most often, soldiers shot themselves to death at home or in the barracks.
By comparison, more than half of suicides by U.S. civilians annually involved firearms, according to data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Rational Nation USA said...

Anon, I have a idea for you. Pull your head out of your stinking a**.

Silverfiddle said...

Anon: So you are criticizing some of us for seeing the error of our big-government ways?

And if you think it's all the GOP's fault, you really do have your head planted where the sun don't shine.

We have a problem in this nation, and it's a bi-partisan one.

Rational Nation USA said...

@Anon... "but I can't get you to print the truth about RN. What a slime bag you are."

It is apparent Anon you are once again seeing reflections.

Shaw is far from a slime bag and everybody who visits PE realizes this. It really takes a coward to make statements like that.

All one can feel for you Anon is 1) pity, or 2) disgust. Take your pick as to which you prefer.

Shaw Kenawe said...

Didn't check these other threads for the troll's comments.

BB-Idaho said...

..once again, live by the gun ...

Shaw Kenawe said...

What an bizarre story!