Contributor Post Created with Sketch. Oh Yes, in Your Backyard

 

shutterstock_177220943Guns are bad and everyone knows it. So declares Dahlia Lithwick in Slate. The proof is in our tendency towards NIMBY (Not In My Backyard) double standards while addressing the issues related to gun ownership and carry laws. 

The NIMBY factor is what is at work every time a legislature affords sweeping and generous gun rights to everyone, except people likely to shoot at them. So when the Georgia legislature passed its infamous “guns everywhere” bill this spring, it allowed for the carrying of weapons virtually everywhere, including in bars, churches, school zones, government buildings and parts of airports.

But, oddly enough, guns were not permitted in the state Capitol, which is, according to Georgia Gov. Nathan Deal, “a uniform carved-out area all across our state.” Convenient.

There is a relatively recent invention of which Dahlia may not be aware of called “metal detectors.” As the name suggests, they can detect metal. The Georgia state capital searches everyone who enters to insure they are not carrying a gun before gaining access. While inside, you can be reasonably confident that if someone threatens your life, they will not be doing so with a gun. As such, you have no need to carry for self-defense purposes.

What eludes Dahlia is fact that most government buildings, and virtually all schools, churches, and restaurants, don’t search for weapons before granting entrance to their patrons. As leftists are prone to doing, she takes it as an article of faith that gun-free zones prevent guns from entering.

And last year GOP Rep. Steve Stockman of Texas held a meeting to deride the whole idea of “gun-free zones” (seeking to repeal legislation making schools gun-free).

Step one: Pass law that declares schools gun free. 

Step two: … 

Step three: Schools gun free! 

The Obamacare insurance mandate at least proves liberals consistent when it comes to this impulse. When faced with the problem of too many Americans living without health insurance, the Democrats responded by outlawing being uninsured. I eagerly await their ban on poverty.

In an interview this week, Adam Winkler, who teaches law at UCLA and is the author of the important book Gunfight: The Battle Over the Right to Bear Arms in America, wondered whether there wasn’t a tiny bit of judicial NIMBYism at work in the Supreme Court’s persistent refusal to take another Second Amendment case since 2010, despite conflicts among the appeals courts. “They had good cases presented this term,” he said. “They chose not to take the cases despite a split in the circuits. I wonder if that is at all related to the fact that the city they live and work in has some of the strictest gun regulations in the country.”

Slate is a truly groundbreaking outlet if they can read the minds of Supreme Court justices and divine secret motives. If these powers only extended to the broader population, they might become profitable.

But it gets better. Way better. You know what else is a gun-free NIMBY zone? The NRA Convention.

Hanging curveball on the way Frank; get ready.

And as ThinkProgress documented just last year, most gun shows also ban loaded weapons because “Safety is our Number One Priority, and a safe environment in the show can only be maintained if there are no loaded guns in the show.” It’s impossible not to see at least some NIMBYism at work when, as here, legislators beholden to the NRA vote one way when it comes to allowing loaded guns to be carried anywhere, and vote quite differently when those weapons are anywhere near them.

Again, Dahlia cannot imagine any reason for such a rule aside from her nursery school understanding of guns being bad, and everyone (including the NRA) knowing it. Gun shows and stores are places where numerous people will be actively handling, and manipulating guns. In an environment such as this, it is foolish for people to try and remember which guns may be loaded and which may be unloaded. Any gun owner with half a brain keeps their loaded magazines far away from unloaded ones that they may do dry practice with. Most even paint, or otherwise label practice magazines so there is no chance they will ever accidentally load one, and risk a negligent discharge at a future date.

Rules banning loaded weapons at gun shows protect against user error, they do not verify liberal fears that guns are evil, and gun supporters know it. A modern pistol cannot fire on its own. Not when dropped, and certainly not when properly holstered. A holstered gun does not instantly render the space it occupies more dangerous than it otherwise would be. Only a human can do that when reaching for one. And if a man is willing to shoot another man unprovoked, and violate the most basic of moral prohibitions (thou shalt not murder), what power does “thou shalt not carry a gun into this establishment” have to stop them from doing so?

None. I know it, you know it, and I suspect Dahlia knows it.

Beneath all the bluster and financial obligation there lies a recognition that when huge groups of armed citizens gather in small spaces, it’s probably a good idea to take away their guns, most especially if you’re going to be there.

I actually have more common cause with her on this point then one might assume. What she forgets in this piece is that if you want to take away a person’s guns during such a gathering, you have to actually address step two, and take away their guns. Simply declaring them banished accomplishes next to nothing. A school that has armed guards and screens every entrant for weapons would seem an ideal gun-free zone. One where wishful thinking is relied on to keep killers away seems less so.

There are 12 comments.

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  1. Misthiocracy got drunk and Member
    Misthiocracy got drunk andJoined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    Frank Soto: But, oddly enough, guns were not permitted in the state Capitol, which is, according to Georgia Gov. Nathan Deal, “a uniform carved-out area all across our state.” Convenient.

    So, by this logic, any time a legislature carves out an exception to a law, it automatically means that it’s a bad law?

    I’ll remember that every time politicians carve out exemptions for themselves when creating new labour laws and workplace regulations.

    • #1
    • June 2, 2014, at 1:47 PM PDT
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  2. Jason Rudert Member

    Darn right, Soto!

    Frank Soto: Slate is a truly groundbreaking outlet if they can read the minds of Supreme Court justices and divine secret motives. If these powers only extended to the broader population, they might become profitable.

     LOL

    • #2
    • June 2, 2014, at 1:51 PM PDT
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  3. tabula rasa Member
    tabula rasaJoined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    Beautiful dissection of Dahlia’s absurdity.

    Her first name brought to mind the legendary battles that Bertie Wooster had with his Aunts: Agatha and, yes, Dahlia.

    Dahlia is actually the nicer of the two, but she did lay down the hammer on Bertie from time to time.

    After the real-life Dahlia Lithwick reads your post, you may receive a note like this one (patterned after something Aunt Dahlia said to Bertie):

    “[Dear Frank:] What a pest you are, you miserable object. Remember years ago, when you were in your cradle, being left alone with you one day and you nearly swallowed your rubber comforter and started turning purple. And I, ass that I was, took it out and saved your life. Let me tell you, young [Frank], it will go very hard with you if you ever swallow a rubber comforter again when I am by to aid.”

    Keep your weapon close at hand.

    • #3
    • June 2, 2014, at 2:06 PM PDT
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  4. Tom Meyer, Common Citizen Contributor

    Frank Soto: A modern pistol cannot fire on its own. Not when dropped, and certainly not when properly holstered. A holstered gun does not instantly render the space it occupies more dangerous than it otherwise would be. Only a human can do that when reaching for one.

    Speaking of which, did you come across this gem from last year?

    Summary: in order to show how backward and stoopid America’s gun culture is, idiot writer purchases a handgun, actively avoids any effort to receive instruction in its proper use, and then carries it in public just to show that she can.

    Ultimate irony? Even after doing something as insanely irresponsible as that, no one got hurt.

    • #4
    • June 2, 2014, at 2:25 PM PDT
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  5. DocJay Inactive

    Beneath all the bluster and financial obligation there lies a recognition that when huge groups of armed citizens gather in small spaces, it’s probably a good idea to take away their guns, most especially if you’re going to be there.

    I actually have more common cause with her on this point then one might assume.

    An armed society is a polite one.

    • #5
    • June 2, 2014, at 2:27 PM PDT
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  6. Z in MT Member

    Very good point Frank. Liberals have the magical idea that banning something automatically gets rid of the the thing banned. If this were the case then we could just pass laws banning poverty, cancer, distracted driving, or anything else that we might not like.

    • #6
    • June 2, 2014, at 2:29 PM PDT
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  7. Done Contributor
    Done

    DocJay:

    Beneath all the bluster and financial obligation there lies a recognition that when huge groups of armed citizens gather in small spaces, it’s probably a good idea to take away their guns, most especially if you’re going to be there.

    I actually have more common cause with her on this point then one might assume.

    An armed society is a polite one.

     My point is I think it’s reasonable to desire certain locations be gun free, such as schools. But if they have no desire to take the steps to make them gun free, than banning law abiding citizens from carrying there is counter productive.

    • #7
    • June 2, 2014, at 2:33 PM PDT
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  8. captainpower Inactive

    DocJay:

    An armed society is a polite one.

    That seems a little naive.

    It’s the culture that dictates what happens when the populace is armed.

    See for example gang culture, which is responsible for nearly 50% of all violent crime according to the FBI.

    http://www.breitbart.com/Big-Government/2014/05/06/FBI-Gangs-Responsible-For-Nearly-Half-Of-All-Violent-Crime

    • #8
    • June 2, 2014, at 2:50 PM PDT
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  9. DocJay Inactive

    I was quoting Heinlein.

    • #9
    • June 2, 2014, at 9:29 PM PDT
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  10. DocJay Inactive

    Since I carry a gun there are occasional times I’m at a school, or a college, or a casino with one one me. Contrary to Dahlia, the school , college, or casino is actually safer because of my presence there because I’d lay down my life to protect others. Of course, I am admitting to breaking the law here. But I really don’t care about that. I don’t see armed guards or metal detectors so what’s to stop evil from being there with a 12 gauge?

    • #10
    • June 2, 2014, at 9:35 PM PDT
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  11. DocJay Inactive

    Captain Power, I’m only too aware of gang violence. But I’m curious how we’d all be if only the government and the crooks( redundant? ) had weapons.

    • #11
    • June 2, 2014, at 9:41 PM PDT
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  12. Fake John/Jane Galt Coolidge

    Frank Soto:

    DocJay:

    Beneath all the bluster and financial obligation there lies a recognition that when huge groups of armed citizens gather in small spaces, it’s probably a good idea to take away their guns, most especially if you’re going to be there.

    I actually have more common cause with her on this point then one might assume.

    An armed society is a polite one.

    My point is I think it’s reasonable to desire certain locations be gun free, such as schools. But if they have no desire to take the steps to make them gun free, than banning law abiding citizens from carrying there is counter productive.

     Far as I am concerned any place that requires me to give up my weapon is guaranteeing my safety. If something happens to me while I am on their property and they did not take steps to keep me safe then I should have the right to sue them for their oversight. If they require people to give up their right to protect themselves then they should be required to take on this responsibility and be held accountable when they do not.

    • #12
    • June 3, 2014, at 10:29 AM PDT
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