Where In The World Is Southern Beale

Some very interesting comments on my gun control thread below, thanks to everyone for the dialogue. Mr. Beale and I are on the road for our annual late summer excursion so my ability to participate has been limited. However, I do read all of the comments, even if I can’t always respond.

Three guesses where we are (hint: it’s my most favorite place in the world, or at least, top three):

Peace

When I get back to Nashville my hope is to be able to devote more time to the blog. This summer was brutal, my work schedule was insane, and I decided to scale back and take on a lighter workload this fall so I can devote myself to other things. So I hope that means I can get back to doing some of my regular postings, like Good News Friday and the Tennessee Gun Report.

Anyway, again I am thankful to you readers who humble me with your intelligent discussion and willingness to read my silly rantings. You make this thing fun.

More travel pics to come, even though guess which idiot left her camera at home this time? Me! Cell phones can’t do the beauty of this place justice.

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Filed under travel

Why Is Gun Control So Hard

Umm, not exactly.

Umm, not exactly.


Another day, another horrific shooting in America.

Actually, not just one. This also happened today in Kentucky. And this in West Virginia. Not to mention this and this.

But no, these and all the other gun stories today will get overshadowed by the events in Virginia, which unfolded on live TV while viewers were taking their first sips of coffee.

Why is gun control so hard? Why, after every shooting, does nothing ever change? Despite the fact that large majorities of gun owners — not just people but the gun owners themselvessupport basic gun control measures like waiting periods and universal background checks, it doesn’t happen.

Why? Why is it always “too soon” to call for gun control after a tragedy, but nobody waited a beat to call for arming military recruiters after the Chattanooga shooting? Or arming teachers after Sandy Hook? In fact, action has been swiftly taken in several states to arm National Guard recruiters, even though everyone fails to mention that at least one of the “good guys” at the Chattanooga military base actually was armed. Apparently it didn’t do a damn bit of good, but let’s not let facts get in the way of a good talking point, shall we? We even have a Knoxville Republican wanting to give Guardsmen immunity if they use their guns and injure someone.

After every shooting we’ve loosened gun laws, instead of tightening them. And yet we have more shootings. So, that’s not working, obviously. Why can’t we try something new? Why doesn’t anything change? Here are some of my ideas:

• White people largely associate gun violence with “those” neighborhoods in “that” part of town, ergo it doesn’t affect them, it’s a problem for the Blahs. Even though this is factually untrue, that’s the general consensus, as portrayed in the media. So, “not my problem.”

• Coverage of mass shootings is sanitized. I understand there’s a delicate balance here, but throughout our history, pictures have done what words cannot. For example, it took this to change peoples’ attitudes about the Vietnam War and student-led protests:

capture-newseum-photo-894857-o

The video of today’s shooting went out across the internet, and was auto-played on every network and cable news homepage. While not bloody, it was shocking. It may shock people out of their complacency.

• We don’t know how to talk about a policy response to shooting tragedies. It’s always too soon to talk about gun control, but with an average of one mass shooting a day, the time will never be right. Conservatives like to claim the moral high ground with shaming headlines like this one:

TooSoon

No one wants to politicize a tragedy but no one also ever points out that calling for arming teachers, National Guard recruiters, airplane pilots, etc. is doing just that. If the other side can do it, so can we. It’s not exploitation, it’s called taking action to prevent the next tragedy, idiots.

• Rural areas dominate our representation in Congress and state houses. Guns are a different thing in rural areas than in urban areas. Yet gun legislation pretends this is not the case. For example, Tennessee’s rural-dominated state legislature has opened a huge can of worms for metropolitan areas (and state economic drivers) Nashville and Memphis. Ditto our Congress, which sees guns as some kind of RuralMurrica cultural touchstone, not the black market highway to urban gun crime that it is.

• History. If shooting 8-year-olds in their school, and a member of Congress meeting her constituents, wasn’t awful enough to get action, nothing will be. That’s an oft-repeated talking point but it’s also bullshit. Nobody thought the Confederate Flag would ever come down from the South Carolina state capitol, either. Change happens if you want it.

• Laziness. We’re a country of 300 million people. That theater shooting in such-and-such city was awful but hey, I didn’t know any of those people. I’ll write my Congress Critter later. But first, hey let’s watch The Bachelor!

Your ideas?

24 Comments

Filed under gun control, gun violence, Guns

Libertarian FAIL

That awkward moment when the Libertarian is captured thanking the taxpayer-funded firefighter for saving his house while wearing his “Less Taxes-Less Government-More Freedom” T-shirt:

11880667_1159655450716194_4757018081709924722_n

Hey kids, this is what a dumbass looks like.

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Congratulations, Kristen A. Harris! You’re Our 2nd Amendment Hero Du Jour

Responsible gun owner alert! A stalker who leaves a loaded gun within reach of her 7-year-old and walks around with it falling out of her pocket? Give her a Mom of the Year Award, too:

Squabble at KFC leads to neglect, gun charges for Rockport woman

KristenHarris_23030378_ver1.0_640_480
EVANSVILLE – A Rockport, Indiana, woman faces weapons and child neglect charges after police said her loaded handgun fell out of her pocket while she was arguing with her ex-boyfriend outside an Evansville fast food restaurant Thursday evening.

The man, who said he’s been in Evansville for about two weeks because of work, told police he was eating at the Kentucky Fried Chicken on South Green River Road just after 6:30 p.m. when he was confronted by 29-year-old Kristen A. Harris inside the eatery. The pair went outside and argued, according to the probable cause affidavit against her.

[…]

Harris reportedly left the scene, but was apprehended a short time later. When she was stopped, Harris had two children — ages 2 and 7 — in her vehicle with her. They were both in the back seat, according to police. Investigators noted in the affidavit that the older child was not wearing a seat belt and could have grabbed the gun, which turned out to be loaded and was reportedly lying on the front seat of Harris’ car when she was arrested. Police said they believe Harris left the children inside her vehicle when she went inside the restaurant.

So much fail. But did she have a permit for that gun? Let’s investigate:

During the subsequent investigation, police learned that the gun legally belonged to Harris but she did not have a valid permit to carry the weapon. A records search indicated that the process for Harris to obtain a permit was started but the fees were never paid, according to the affidavit. Harris reportedly acknowledged that she did not have a permit for the weapon but claimed she normally does not take the weapon out of her home. She said she took it with her to confront her ex-boyfriend because he “has acted crazy in the past,” according to the affidavit. Police did not disclose if Harris told them what the argument was about.

AH. So she didn’t have a permit because she hadn’t paid the fees yet. Just a few dollars shy of being one of our safest, most responsible citizens evah!

But wait, there’s more:

Harris reportedly told police that she knew the man was inside KFC because she had put a GPS device inside his vehicle. There is no mention in the affidavit whether the 26-year-old man knew about that device or not.

And a stalker, too. Slow clap, gun loons.

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Filed under gun control, Guns

Sickos & Sociopaths For Trump

Brilliant ideas from the Donald Trump For President crowd:

Still, others said they had plenty of advice for the man they regularly identified in conversation as “Mr. Trump.”

“Hopefully, he’s going to sit there and say, ‘When I become elected president, what we’re going to do is we’re going to make the border a vacation spot, it’s going to cost you $25 for a permit, and then you get $50 for every confirmed kill,’ ” said Jim Sherota, 53, who works for a landscaping company. “That’d be one nice thing.”

Jesus fucking Christ what is wrong with these people? Also, New York Times? You buried the goddamn lede.

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Filed under 2016 Presidential Election, immigration

Congratulations, Unidentified TX Man! You’re Our 2nd Amendment Hero Du Jour!

Chalk up another victory for freedom from one of our safest, most responsible citizens evah:

A 39-year-old parent of a high school student is expected to face a third-degree felony charge after a gun went off at Roo Stadium Thursday night.

The accidental discharge occurred around 9 p.m. at the end of the Meet the Roos event at the Ninth Grade Center campus.

No injuries or property damage resulted from the incident, according to Weatherford police.

Witnesses in section G reported hearing a gunshot and then seeing a man retrieve a pistol possibly off the ground, put it in his pocket and hurriedly leave the area, according to Weatherford Police CID Sgt. John Rudolph.

[…]

The man had no intention of harming anyone and it is believed to be an accident that occurred when the man put his hand in his pocket, according to Rudolph.

The man did have a concealed carry license, Rudolph said.

He gets extra bravery points for slinking home with his tail tucked between his legs and waiting for the police to ID him. I wonder if they taught him that in concealed-carry class>

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Filed under gun control, Guns

Back When We Were Great

Donald Trump talks a lot about how his supporters “just want this country to be great again,” a line he repeats so often that he might as well slap it on a bumper sticker (here’s a representative example.) What he seems to be saying is that at some point in our past we were great but we are no longer great and our lack of greatness sucks and has caused much consternation among people who buy the bullshit that Trump is selling.

However, I have yet to find anyone who has asked him when, exactly, this “great” period was. What era of American greatness would they like to return us to? Anyone?

Is Trump talking about back when we had Jim Crow laws and women couldn’t open a bank account without their husband’s permission? Is he talking about when Reagan was president and we were trading arms for hostages and ginning up war in the jungles of Central America?

Is he talking about all of those times when our CIA was overthrowing democratically-elected governments in countries populated by brown people? Is he talking about when our economy was inflated on the hot air and promises of hedge fund managers and Wall Street rip-off artists?

What is this fucking great time when we were all awesome that is so much better? Someone please tell me. Can you point to it on a calendar? In a history book? Or is it just some mythic time before we had a black president and a dysfunctional Congress and a general lack of comity in the public square?

Dying to know.

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Filed under 2012 presidential election