1 The Las Vegas Strip massacre has triggered so many dumb and unethical quotes flying around on social media and out of the mouths of elected officials that it’s hard to keep up: any of them could sustain a full post.
- Here’s one from Gloria Steinem, quoted approvingly by a feminist Facebook friend:
“How about we treat every young man who wants to buy a gun like every woman who wants to get an abortion — mandatory 48-hr waiting period, parental permission, a note from his doctor proving he understands what he’s about to do, a video he has to watch about the effects of gun violence, an ultrasound wand up the ass (just because). Let’s close down all but one gun shop in every state and make him travel hundreds of miles, take time off work, and stay overnight in a strange town to get a gun. Make him walk through a gauntlet of people holding photos of loved ones who were shot to death, people who call him a murderer and beg him not to buy a gun.It makes more sense to do this with young men and guns than with women and health care, right? I mean, no woman getting an abortion has killed a room full of people in seconds, right?”
First, we learn that no matter what the human tragedy, all some activist can think of is how it can further their own single issue obsession. With Gloria, that single issue abortion, even though there are no helpful or intellectually honest comparisons to be made between guns and abortions. Second, we learn that Gloria never grasped the old “two wrongs don’t make a right” concept. The various abortion-blocking measures she alludes to are all unethical and unconstitutional interference with a Constitutionally protected right, but she would joyfully inflict them on citizens trying to exercise their rights, because she doesn’t care about those.
- This one is more surprising and depressing: Matthew Dowd, a regular on ABC’s Sunday morning round-tables with George Stephanopoulos, meaning that he is presented as competent, historically informed, and trustworthy, actually tweeted,
“2nd amendment was all about having a militia available to protect the government from threat foreign or domestic w/out a standing army.”
This is not just wrong, but spectacularly and inexcusably wrong. Dowd is either lying, ignorant, or unable to process information. His nonsense has been used by anti-gun fanatics for decades, but the Supreme Court and the vast majority of Constitutional scholars reject it, concluding that the Bill of Rights, which all focus on individual rights that cannot be taken away by the government, would not include as #2 provision endorsing militias and nothing more.
The tweet should disqualify him from commenting on any gun policy issues from now until the stars turn cold.
- I decided that Rep. John Lewis (D-GA) has already been exposed enough on Ethics Alarms this year (as a result of his unethical and divisive boycott of President Trump’s inauguration) that I don’t need to hand him another Ethics Dunce, but this rant delivered during an appearance on MSNBC’s “Hardball” (which network has been more shameless in anti-gun ravings, MSNBC or CNN? Tough call…) is certainly worthy of the award:
“The American people will not stand to see hundreds and thousands of their fellow citizens mowed down because the lack of action on the part of the Congress…We have to do something…The time is always right to do what is right. We waited too long. How many more people will die? Would it be a few hundred? A few thousand? Several thousand? We have to act. We cannot wait.”
This should be enshrined in the “Do something!” Hall of Fame. Lewis never hinted at what exactly will end gun deaths, just that Republicans and the NRA are responsible for not doing it. This is pure demagoguery and designed to mislead and inflame his party’s Second Amendment hating base. “We have to act! We cannot wait!”
To do what, Congressman? Only one measure would have the results that you claim we cannot wait to enact: banning and confiscating all guns, and even that wouldn’t work.
Lewis has parlayed a well-deserved reputation for courage during the civil rights protest into a too-long career as an incompetent, irresponsible, hyper-partisan and racially divisive legislator.
- Oh, let’s do one more. We can’t ignore the Hollywood crowd, who shoot people on screen for a living, then lecture us about gun control. Here’s actress Patricia Arquette (“Medium”) on Twitter:
“You may have the right to have a gun but you don’t have the right to shoot it at people because you are simply angry…This isn’t about right and left it’s about people thinking they have a right to shoot people b/c they are angry.”
- Are you hungry for more? Here’s Nancy Sinatra (admit it: you were wondering why I had that video at the beginning…) sticking both of her boots in her mouth:
Yes, Nancy, the solution to gun violence is to shoot people for their political views.
2. And now for something completely different: In Catalan, which just completed a referendum on breaking away from Spain that went 90% in favor of “Catalexit,” many of the citizens who did not vote are complaining mightily about the looming secession. Once again, I have to blame the victims. There is some evidence that the Catalan public doesn’t favor breaking away, but the secession group is more passionate and pro-active. It appears that only those wanting to leave bothered to vote.
Well, that’s democracy. Citizens have a duty to vote and participate in their own government. It they can’t be bothered, that apathy is implied consent to let others decide how you are going to be governed. The New York Times quotes Noemi Aguro, 38, a supporter of independence who has no sympathy her neighbors. “They didn’t vote, they had the chance, they shouldn’t complain now,” she said.
There’s an ethics catch, though. Spain tried to block the vote, which it claimed was illegal, directing police to use “truncheons and rubber bullets” to enforce the national government’s order. This thrusts the ethics of the vote into chaotic territory, with such questions as,
…Should a crucial referendum held under such conditions be binding?
…Is it fair and just for voters who cared enough about the fate of their region to come to polls despite police state threats not be able to have their votes count?
…If the referendum results are declared invalid because voting was suppressed by police action, doesn’t that mean that Spain succeeded in using force to suppress democracy in action?
…Can we imagine more bone-headed and incompetent than a government fearing the results of a referendum using threats that are likely to suppress the voters who are likely to support that government’s position more than the voters who oppose the government?