Calling Their Bluff
Wayne LaPierre has spoken, and we now have an answer from the NRA. The director of the nation's largest crime advocacy organization, responding to the growing outcry for gun control legislation, urges Congress (transcript of speech, here) to enact legislation placing an armed police officer inside every public and private elementary, middle, and high school in the land.
It could have been worse. There are people- no kidding- across the country who have suggested that one individual, or every teacher, in each school be armed. That would be far worse, as unruly students happily disarm educators more focused on teaching than on classroom security.
The NRA's recommendation appears spurred by a few misconceptions. LaPierre claimed "a child growing up in America witnesses 16,000 murders and 200.000 acts of violence by the time he or she reaches the ripe old age of 18." It's a wonder the child has time to eat, sleep or do much of anything else. He contends, further, "the only thing that stops a bad guy with a gun is a good guy with a gun." Not all non-shooters are good guys and not all guys with a gun are bad guys, something LaPierre apparently momentarily forgot. And alas, these official "bad guys" are reluctant to walk around wearing a sign reading "Bad Guy- Take Cover."
The falsehoods evidently extend to Cleta Mitchell, whom The Washington Post described as "a Washington lawyer and NRA board member who said she participated in the discussions of the proposal." She says liberals
always connect the wrong dots and blame the same people when their idiotic 'solutions' don't solve problems. No one bothers to ask why the Clinton assault weapons ban didn't prevent Columbine. Same question now: Why didn't the Connecticut gun laws prevent these killings? It is because gun laws don't stop bad guys with guns from killing people.
Ignore, for now, the irony of someone decrying "idiocy" trotting out the tired, debunked "guns don't kill people, people kill people" cliche. Consider, instead, the notion that "the Clinton assault weapons ban didn't prevent Columbine." The Associated Press compiled, and the Associated Press reported, a list of mass shootings worldwide in the past 45-50 years. Of those having taken place in the United States, eight (8) occurred from August 1, 1966 to 91/13/94, when the assault weapons ban was enacted; none from that date until the Columbine atrocity on 4/20/99, nor any from then until 9/13/04, when the assault weapons ban expired; and seven (7) since that date. Mitchell's slick rhetoric brings to mind Napoleon's great line of propaganda to his fellow animals in George Orwell's Animal Farm:
Do you know what would happen if we pigs failed in our duty? Jones
would come back! Yes, Jones would come back! Surely, comrades," cried
Squealer almost pleadingly, skipping from side to side and whisking his
tail, "surely there is no one among you who wants to see Jones come back?"
Jones' reign, as you might recall, was no worse- and probably better- than that of Napoleon, just as the incidence of mass killings indicates the assault weapons ban probably was reasonably effective, notwithstanding Mitchell's implication.
There is an argument to be made for having a law enforcement officer in every school. But with national hysteria over the deficit and $1.2 trillion in defense, medicare, medicaid, social security, and non-defense discretionary cuts due to begin on January 2, 2013, LaPierre envisions an armed officer in up to 135,000 public and private schools, and says little regarding how such an ambitious undertaking would be funded. The left, therefore, could issue a counter-proposal to the NRA: an armed police officer in every public school in the U.S.A., to be funded by a tax surcharge on millionaires. Then we would find out how truly committed Wayne LaPierre and his organization are to children.