Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Virginia Tech

The massacre at Virginia Tech has evoked the expected calls for more gun control. But does that make any sense?

How many students lives would have been saved if the professors or some of the students who were attacked or the student victims had been carrying guns? If the campus had not been an official “gun free area,” with the shooter had been stopped by someone else's gun before killing 32 people? We will never know.

The argument in favor of gun control goes like this. If gun control were effective, the shooter would not have been able to obtain the guns that he obtained. It was too easy for him to obtain the guns and the ammunition.

Gun control advocates presume that the shooter would not have been able to obtain the guns and ammunition by illegal means. If the shooter were determined to go on his rampage, what makes us think that he would not be able to get around the law. Just because a law bans some contraband, that doesn't mean that it's not obtainable. Oh yes, usually raises the price. It makes money for black marketeers. But that doesn't mean that the contraband is unobtainable.

On the other hand, the Second Amendment crowd, points out that if one of the students had had a gun, perhaps the shooter would have been stopped earlier. Perhaps fewer people would have died.

How likely is it that there would have been any guns in the classroom even if the school had not been a gun free zone? I suggest that it is pretty unlikely. Unless we were to force a professor to have guns, most people, professors and otherwise, would not carry them as a matter of course. I can't imagine a campus full of people walk around with guns and holsters at their sides. How likely is it that there would have been a student with a concealed-carry permit carrying a weapon to happen to be in one of the question classrooms attacked by the shooter? But, without the "gun free zone" designation, who knows?

One thing is for sure. The gun-free students and gun-free professors had no chance against a well armed and cold-blooded gunmen. How does that balance against the possibility of an irresponsible gun toting student who gets drunk or high on drugs and pulls out his firearm and begins shooting? I suppose that is the purpose of a "gun free zone," isn't it.

I do not think that restricting the sale of guns or requiring registration of guns would have mattered one way or the other to a determined shooter planning to go on a rampage. By all accounts, this was a long-planned rampage. The guns were purchased in March. The rampage occurred in mid April. A determined nutcase had plenty of opportunity to obtain a black-market guns if he wanted them.

The old saying is, if you outlaw guns, only outlaws will have guns. How true in the Virginia Tech case!

Update: From Glenn Reynolds writing in the NY Daily News:

In fact, some mass shootings have been stopped by armed citizens. Though press accounts downplayed it, the 2002 shooting at Appalachian Law School was stopped when a student retrieved a gun from his car and confronted the shooter. Likewise, Pearl, Miss., school shooter Luke Woodham was stopped when the school's vice principal took a .45 fromhis truck and ran to the scene. In February's Utah mall shooting, it was an off-duty police officer who happened to be on the scene and carrying a gun.

Police can't be everywhere, and as incidents from Columbine to Virginia Tech demonstrate, by the time they show up at a mass shooting, it's usually too late. On the other hand, one group of people is, by definition, always on the scene: the victims. Only if they're armed, they may wind up not being victims at all.

"Gun-free zones" are premised on a fantasy: That murderers will follow rules, and that people like my student, or Bradford Wiles, are a greater danger to those around them than crazed killers like Cho Seung-hui. That's an insult. Sometimes, it's a deadly one.

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

Weenie Sailors Dishonor Britain

The story of the British sailors continue. While most of the media give the British sailor a pass for their collaboration in the Iranian propagandization of their capture, there is outrage in Britain over them running to the medial to sell their stories. The Ottawa Citizen opines:

The honourable thing would have been to renounce their coerced behaviour, denounce the Iranians' use of them for propaganda, and acknowledge that anything they endured was nothing compared to the sacrifices others have made.

Instead, some ran to the media with their victim tales. The big moneymaker was 26-year-old Faye Turney, the only woman in the group. The Royal navy member reportedly sold her story for about $300,000 in a newspaper and television deal.

Tales of victimhood? Tales of the lack of fortitude?

What do the Brits teach their military about behavior when captured? Any dishonor to protect themselves? Or instead: give name, rank and serial number only.

To be sure, not all captured Americans soldiers have behaved as trained, but as a previous post has pointed out, American military people taken hostage by Iran did much better than those British sailors in upholding our honor.

Tuesday, April 10, 2007

Don Imus and Unforgiveness

Don Imus? Not a fan. Saying that a women's basketball team looked like a bunch of nappy-headed hos was uncalled for. so he groveled in apology.

The reactions of the Rev. Al Sharpton and the Rev. Jesse Jackson? Unforgiveness.

What are these guys, Sharpton and Jackson, reverends of exactly? Certainly not Christianity.

Christians forgive their trespassers.

Monday, April 09, 2007

Britain Military Gone Soft

As a citizen, who would you rather have defending your country: The British weenies who collaborated with Tom the Iranian Thug-in-Chief? Or the United States Marines held Hostage by Iran in 1979? Read the first hand account of one of those Marines.

What a difference!!

Thursday, April 05, 2007

Slip-Sliding

I was struck by the following quote from the AP report on the sentencing of Tarik Shah for supporting terrorism:
A prosecutor asked Shah to say he knew that al-Qaida was a terrorist group, but Shah, after a pause of several minutes to consult with his lawyer, agreed only that he knew that the U.S. had designated al-Qaida a terrorist organization.
What stunned me was that that was exactly the response of CAIR's Nihad Awad's in a television interview with pressed to answer whether Hamas was a terrorist organization. Birds of a feather, I guess.

Monday, April 02, 2007

A True Story

Read the incredibly moving story of an ex-Muslim here.

I was particularly struck by the following:
Q.5: 51
O you who believe! Take not the Jews and the Christians as awliya’ (friends, protectors, helpers, etc.), they are but awliya’ to one another…
I also found the above statement false. The evidence is in the Bosnia and Kosovo crisis; where Christian countries, waged war against another Christian country, to liberate Muslims. Many Jewish doctors volunteered to help the Kosovar refugees, despite the fact that during the WWII, the same Albanian Muslims took sides with Hitler and helped him in his holocaust against the Jews.

It became obvious to me that Muslims are accepted by all the people of the world yet our prophet wants us to hate them, to disassociate ourselves from them, to force them into our way of life or kill them, subdue them and make them pay Jizya. How silly! How pathetic! How inhumane! No wonder there is so much inexplicable hate of the West and of the Jews among Muslims. It was Muhammad who inseminated the hate and the distrust of the non-believers among his followers. How can Muslims integrate with other nations while holding these hateful messages of the Quran as the words of God?

There are many Muslims who immigrate to non-Muslim countries and are received with open arms. Many of them get into politics and become part of the ruling elite. We suffer no discrimination in the non-Islamic countries.
It is so true, contrary to the lies of CAIR, that Muslims, as people, are accepted in America by ordinary Americans. There is no widespread campaign of discrimination against people simply for being Muslims.

If there is any separateness experienced, Muslims in America have only their own radicals to blame.

And it is true for anyone: If you expect to be discriminated against, your attitude will probably cause fulfillment of your expectation.

Opposition to Voter ID is Racist?

I read a recent Mother Jones article (don't ask why) that noted that voter ID laws have a negligible effect on elections.  OK so far.  T...