Dear Dr. Boli: I am confused. The National Rifle Association, forced due to the failed Mayan Apocalypse to make a statement about the latest school shooting, recommended as a solution more guns in schools and a national registry of the mentally ill. Am I mistaken? I thought such a list already exists—the membership list of the NRA. —Signed, Listless and gunless in Pittsburgh.
Dear Sir or Madam: As Mr. Wayne LaPierre, the chief executive of the Association, points out, many political figures use national tragedies for selfish political gain. Fortunately Mr. LaPierre’s organization is above such pettiness. A calm and rational examination of the facts proves that, as Mr. LaPierre points out, “The only thing that stops a bad guy with a gun is a good guy with a gun.” Furthermore, the only thing that stops a good guy with a gun is a bad guy with a bigger gun, and you can see that there is no theoretical end to this cycle. Not only will all citizens need to arm themselves, but Mr. LaPierre’s inescapable logic will force them to replace their inadequate weapons frequently with arms that can respond to the latest threats posed by the bad guys, or by the good guys, in the case of those citizens who choose to play on the other side of the game. American companies that make and sell the weapons will prosper and grow into even greater powers in both the economic and the political arenas, at least until there are no Americans left. It is the NRA’s calm consideration of the incalculable economic benefit to be derived from a climate of constant fear and hatred that distinguishes its statements from the irrational appeals to mawkish sentimentality we hear from other quarters.
Nor should we accept any of the specious arguments from those on the other side who point out that other countries with much stricter controls on guns have much less gun violence. As any good patriot can explain, this has nothing to do with the laws. America has more gun crime only because Americans are much worse than people in other countries. Only our guns preserve us from our brutal and degraded American nature. If we had stricter controls on guns, the violence in this country would be apocalyptic.
As for the proposal that every citizen who has ever exhibited any signs of mental illness should be registered in a national database that would keep track of his movements, exclude him from a wide range of workplaces and neighborhoods, and be available to law-enforcement agencies, employers, school administrators, insurers, credit-reporting services, real-estate agents, and malicious hackers, you must remember that Mr. LaPierre makes this proposal because the NRA’s first priority has always been your freedom.