Barry Snell almost gets it

I was directed to an opinion piece by writer Barry Snell entitled “Waking the dragon — How Feinstein fiddled while America burned”.  A lot of folks are telling me how this guy “gets it”.  I’m unconvinced.

For the first 90% of the piece, he does a really good job pointing out all of the farcical issues with the current “debate” on “gun control”–or what we more hard-core gunnies see as the latest attempt to abridge our Constitutional rights by those who would impose mob rule democracy on our Constitutional Republic.

But right there at the end, in his conclusion, he blew it.

Sleeping dragons and terrible resolve

I do not want to live through a
war in my own backyard. I do not want our children to grow up in such an
America, either. So anti-gunners: Please stop, I beg you. See the
writing on the wall before it’s too late.  

Yes, there is a terrible crime
problem, and yes, that problem sometimes involves guns — but it is the
perpetrator that is the problem, not the instrument. Yes, there is a
great divide between liberals and conservatives on the issue of guns.
And while I will be the very first person to criticize the Republican
Party on its many and frequent mistakes, and even stand with my
democratic friends in my disfavor of those things, on the gun issue it
is not the conservatives who are mostly in the wrong this time.

We want the crime and killings to
stop as much as you do, so to my fellow citizens who are anti-gun I
say: So long as you deny our humanity, so long as you malign our
dignity, intelligence and wisdom, so long as you seek to shade us under a
cloud of evil that we do not partake in or support, so long as you tell
us that because we own guns we are terrible people, you will prove
yourselves absolutely right in that we won’t come to the table to talk
with you.

And there will be no hope for
resolution but through victory by force initiated by one side or the
other, God help us, for we will not plow for those who didn’t beat their
swords into plowshares.

That third paragraph is the killer.  Barry, you were so, so close, but you missed it.  It isn’t that we won’t talk because they “deny our humanity” or “malign our dignity, intelligence and wisdom” or any of the rest of it.  We won’t come to the table and talk to these people because there can be no conversation.  Conversation implies communication, and that is a two way street.  I talk, you listen.  You talk, I listen.

With the gun grabbers, that isn’t going to happen.  That’s because this isn’t a philosophical discussion.  Civilian disarmament, which is what they really want (and you acknowledge it yourself, in so many words, earlier on), is the goal.  That’s because, as you also acknowledge, they are “commanding us to shut up, because we’re just a bunch of stupid radicals and liberals alone know what’s best for America.”  Render us powerless and themselves powerful, and we have no choice but to shut up–or die.

I don’t want to live through a civil war either.  I’m too damn old to be out running around in the woods playing Rambo.  I don’t want my kids to have to fight one–hell, I don’t want anyone or their kids to face that situation.  I don’t have to live through it to know that it will suck in ways we can’t even fathom.

But I fear it’s coming.  I not only fear it, but I’m scared to death of the prospect.  But I’m pretty sure we’re far gone down the road to it, and it will take Divine intervention at this point to stop it.  When half of our population “votes for a living”, when our elected masters take it upon themselves to begin denying us our rights for our own good, when the rich and powerful drive the economy into the ground for their further gain and working people become dust under their feet, it’s coming.  The questions are “When?” and “How bad will it get?”

We can hope for a relatively painless revolution, or perhaps one no worse than Russia in 1917.  We may get Adolph Hitler, Uncle Joe Stalin or Pol Pot instead.  Perhaps Mad Max may come riding in–or it may be the Four Horsemen themselves.  There’s no way to know.  We can expect that civilization, in some form or another, will reassert itself.  It always has, and we can hope that it will again. 

If we don’t get “lucky”, we can be certain that hundreds of years of progress will be, for the most part, lost.  Our ability to build the tools to build the tools to build the tools to build the things may well erode completely away, and we find ourselves living a 17th-19th century lifestyle in large part.

Hopefully we can keep the germ theory of disease and a few other important concepts.

Yes, there are some hopeful things out there, and I console myself with the thought that they are not the gutterings of a candle that is dying out, but the first flash of an even greater light that will take humanity out into the solar system and then to the stars.

I’m still getting ready for that long, cold winter, however.  Pray for the best, prepare for the worst.  That’s the old saying, and there’s a lot of wisdom to it.

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