Tuesday, May 22, 2018
Gun Dogs: Sometimes Bad Boys Ride the Bullet Train
Face it. When you're a teenage boy looking to impress a girl, your friends, perceived enemies or strangers who already fear you, gun metal reflects in the sunlight as a pretty hot, sexy thing, almost like gold. A gem of status.
Guns have always been with us in this country, a society which never would have survived or held on to a particle of freedom without their potentially terrible but necessary qualities. You don't think George Washington possessed, cherished and used a gun at age 13, when boys, men and women acutely knew the difference between being firearm-safe and firearm-stupid?
This weekend I gave a gun-toting friend a book gift, a used volume I found in a bookstore, entitled, Guns of the Old West. Published in the mid-nineties using plates from the original 1960 edition, the volume was prepared as a special edition for National Rifle Association members. Apparently, these books were big doings for the NRA some 25 years ago, for the book was bound in pigskin and page edges decorated in gold leaf. The publication itself was replete with illustrations and descriptions of many a firearm which built and ruled the Old West. a history we cannot and should not deny.
Yes, of course guns have a dark side, otherwise they wouldn't serve two sides of the constantly throbbing coin of life.
When I was a kid riding the school bus one morning, so long ago, I noticed the absence of a particular boy my age. Later that day, we classmates learned he had engaged in an argument with his father, a public utility company executive, and shot his dad dead. Obviously, we never saw the boy again.
Years later, when I served in the Air Force, an airman whose family resided in Georgia near our base went off to visit an uncle one weekend, engaged in a vicious disagreement and the uncle shot him dead, shotgun style.
Wow, talk about keeping it all in the family. . .
But that was then, and now we experience a steady diet of school, college and other institutional shootings caused pretty much by young people hosting no familial relationship with their victims.
Which reminds me -- with the latest school shootings in Texas, we see that young instant TV personality and constitutional authority David Hogg has once again taken to his hamster wheel of commentary, exercising off even more words of whatever wisdom might be anticipated from a 17-year-old.
But what's up with these contemporary young folk, primarily boys with guns? It's not the Russians or the Chinese killing American school students, it's Americans killing Americans, and that's a little difficult to comprehend in the larger sense. Kids murdering kids and teachers, children and adults blown away in seconds by the juvenile psycho of the day. A little child shall bleed them?
We suspect these horror stories are not all that enigmatic. Extreme actions perpetrated by "nice," "quiet," "sweet" boys either on the spur of the moment or as a result of rigorous planning substantially reflect a don't-give-a-damn society built over a few decades. For one thing, the tendency, an almost desirable trend toward single parent families, or relationships where one parenting partner goes all but missing seems to have produced offspring with no concept of values or rules. The border between right and wrong is never established, particularly when a big-screen TV or super-violent video game placed in front of an impressionable youth can distort or add mind-numbing visions 24 / 7.
At the very least we wish Hollywood's denizens, currently so outspoken about gun carnage, would acknowledge it's their very industry whose employees can't work diligently enough to outmaneuver one another in producing the most violent -- and violently appealing -- motion pictures intended to satisfy -- or is that to entertain? -- minds both young and old which have grown to crave the hit.
We also wonder about the womb and chemical exposures, influences which affect miniature brains slowly growing in the assumed safety of embryonic fluid and nutrients passed from environment to mother to fetus (oh, I know, I'm destined for hell because I did not use the term, baby. . .). Our lives are increasingly awash in artificial chemicals adjusting us to artificial lives, and sometimes we think the only solution will be that damned killer asteroid waiting for us somewhere just beyond the horizon.
Generations of people, young and old, possessed firearms with few behavioral problems, but most of them were solidly grounded in some vestige of organized structure, be it family, religion or even military protocol. Today, all of these categories have gone bonkers and even the people we look to for answers have few answers.
But drugs, oh baby, we have drugs for everything, and we consult "mental health professionals" by the butt-load, they just itching to explain and help and treat and anesthetize and analyze and suggest and charge people and governments big dollars for all of it.
A gun case used to be a place to store a firearm, now it's a shooter's mental situation. Maybe a mind goes crazy when there's nothing to believe in anymore, or at least that's the premise. However, perhaps it's an instance of so goes the society, so go the youth. Are these mass-homicidal events evidence of a bitter societal end, or will somebody or something come to the rescue until occasions more destructive materialize?
Like it or not, bullets and gunpowder comprise a substantial amount of the mortar which established the USA's foundation. That a disturbing number of young people have commandeered traditional bullet train etiquette coldly and with insidious calculation begets a whole series of questions which may never be answered, but if answered, never solved. We are humans. We are the most incredibly devious entities temporarily anchored to the planet. Good luck with that.
What TV news barely reported about this week: When your televised advertising revenue depends tremendously upon a treasure chest of commercials touting class action lawsuits against mesothelioma, the bad product of the week or some injury acquired by somebody's sister's grandmother's aunt's nephew's dog, you're not about to give this goldmine up willingly. Unfortunately for TV stations throughout the land, this week the U.S. Supreme Court effectively, except where unions are involved, ruled that individuals are not required to take part in class action lawsuits -- which, as we all know, enhance attorneys outrageously while individuals usually get a few cents or dollars in return. We aren't attorney material, but as we understand this five-to-four court ruling, businesses and corporations can now breathe easier in the knowledge that class action lawsuits will no longer be initiated at, literally, the drop of a hat where a handful of people get together and concoct a lawsuit almost guaranteed to ruin a business and, at the very least, cause it to raise consumer prices substantially to recoup the hundreds of thousands or millions of dollars unscrupulous lawyers have drained from their bank accounts. In other words, frivolous lawsuits conducted by attorneys and law firms no better than thieves and thugs are suddenly in more jeopardy than ever, and that's a very, very good thing for America and we who, one way or another, pay for their "legal" robberies.
Obviously, TV ad executives watching the bottom line will probably faint dead away, because a significant source of income may need to kiss TV screens goodbye, or so we believe. As for those progressively liberal lawyers out there, claiming to be do-gooders with no ulterior motives -- looks as though it's back to chasing ambulances and handling bitter divorce cases, or running for public office in hopes of gaining revenge against us all.
Annoyances that won't go away: Hillary Clinton, the eternal electoral victim, is still out there speaking, though a lot of Democrats wish she would simply go away. Then there are the Obamas and their deal to produce "documentaries" and "features" for Netflix. We can hardly imagine how history will be distorted and enhanced to make the Obamas look like George and Martha Washington basking on a pleasant beach peppered with Marxist sand castles and associates of a similar mindset. If class action lawyer commercials aren't enough to make the innocent turn off the TV, this might just do it.