Paranoia is striking deep in today’s PostScript on the responses to Eugene Robinson’s despairing column about gun control laws that aren’t going to happen in this country anytime soon. He outlines the ones he wishes we had and says the alternative would be to promote a more caring society, which can’t really be legislated either because all our freedoms confer freedom to be a jerk.
Having filled the bunker with water to accommodate her new attack dolphin, Lotus (attack dolphins don’t require a background check), PostScript is feeling safe enough to venture out in search of interesting comments and more fish. So, since effective gun laws are just not happening for many reasons, all involving craven politics, and despair abounds, the only question remaining is: What else will we fail to do to prevent attacks like this? Commenters came up with three plans of action.
One nightmarish Big-Brother dystopia is still more plausible than gun control, says roaxle:
We really need some kind of mandated reporting for mental illness like we have for abused children. There is a lot that can and should be done to identify criminal psychopaths before they kill.
SageThrasher also wants some kind of preemptive takedown of sufficiently dangerous people before they do anything illegal:
Right now we “treat” the dangerously insane by waiting until they commit a heinous crime & then sending them to prison. A bad policy on many levels.
Betalisa responds with a rare note of reason, pointing out untreated mental illness is perfectly legal, as it should be:
WHO decides who is “dangerously insane”? Would you rather have a gun than freedom from easily being locked up in a mental institution just because someone else has decided that you might be a menace? And how little of a hint of menace gets you locked up?
ScottinVA has a totally different way of solving the problem, a solution we’ve been hearing more and more: More guns. All guns, all the time.
There is no scenario in which armed citizens would have made this any worse, and many in which it would have stopped him or at least minimized the carnage.
No one seemed to have any problem identifying the one from whom they should run. He was the guy with the muzzle flashes and the loud “boom”s.
Twenty pistols would have incapacitated the man, because the gear does not protect well after the first couple of hits. The shock of the bullets would cause pain and injury.
Okay, but PostScript feels she should point out: Once the 20 shooters start shooting at the killer, there are twenty guys with muzzle flashes and loud booms. How were the hero citizens to know, through tear gas, darkness and chaos, etc., that nineteen of the shooters are good and one is bad? Wouldn’t the shooters be shooting at each other, too? Across a lot of other innocent cowering persons? Might there not be a few additional, collateral casualties, including many of the well-intentioned vigilantes?
And the last point, which popped up more than once but PostScript would rather not quote, was that that preventing this sort of thing is not worth our time; the real issue is abortion.
Once gun control laws are off the table, then, as everyone agrees they are, what we need is a national plan to provide every zygote, at conception, with counseling and a handgun.