Sunday, February 17, 2008

Here A Gun, There A Gun, Everywhere A Gun Gun!

The conservative response to the latest gun violence tragedy proves yet again how ill-equipped these people are to lead this country. On one end of crazy street we have Tennessee’s own state Rep. Stacey Campfield, R-Knoxville, who has reacted to the Northern Illinois University shootings with a bill allowing concealed handguns on Tennessee university campuses:
Campfield's bill would allow "all full-time faculty and staff at any post-secondary institution" to carry handguns when requested to do so by the head of the institution, provided they have received eight hours of training in handling firearms.

The bill also provides that faculty and staff who hold a conceal-carry permit would be able to take their guns onto campus anytime.

Campfield said he considered including students among those authorized to carry guns on campus but left them out "to sound more reasonable."

I think “sounding reasonable” is the least of Rep. Campfield’s worries. In Campfield’s fantasy world, the next time some crazy shoots up a classroom, students won’t just be dodging bullets from one person but from a multitude of armed individuals. Surely nothing could go wrong with that! Lord save us from these idiots who are the heroes of their own movies.

On the other end of crazy street is conservative blogger Rob Port wondering why none of the students “fought back” (it’s all liberals’ fault, of course) and praising this point made by one of his readers:

I am discouraged that no one took their books, laptops, anything and just threw it at the guy, no one fought back. It’s that passivity that troubles me.

Wow, is that compassionate conservatism I smell or just partisan hackery?

Neither Rob Port nor Stacey Campfield were anywhere near these school shootings yet they’re just convinced that more guns and a dose of good ol’ conservative machismo would have saved the lives of these students. Excuse me for calling bullshit.

I know the right likes to paint liberals as “anti-gun.” We’re not, we just read the whole Second Amendment, you know, the part about a “well-regulated militia” and all. I don’t want to get into a debate about gun control, though. It’s one of those things on which the two sides will never agree.

But I do have a suggestion--one actually made by a commenter at Eschaton, and which I think is a brilliant idea. Since the Republican Party seems to think the answer to gun violence is to put more guns in the hands of the people, let’s start with the Republican National Convention in Minneapolis, shall we? Why not allow all RNC delegates to carry concealed weapons to the convention.

That should make everyone participating in the convention feel super-extra snuggly safe, right?