#694 – Dick Bernard: Guns, yet again.

Recently, it seems, I’m fixated on Guns. Mebbe so. It is an important topic. (Additional recent posts at Feb. 3 and Feb. 19, 2013)
I’m an active blogger; this is #694 since March, 2009.
Put the letters “Guns” in the search box, and up pop 27 blogposts which apparently use the letters “guns” somewhere within their text. I’m not inclined to argue with word search, but, of the references it gives, a half dozen of those posts were not about guns at all (#104, 465, 473, 533, 588, 598); three are by guest writers; seven are post the Newtown CT massacre. There are headings like Binghamton NY, Tucson AZ (Gabby Giffords), Aurora CO, Newtown CT, earlier sites of gun carnage by an individual (there are others I would have written about too).
The reader can decide if I’m fixated on the topic of Guns, or someone with a very rational concern….
February 21, I did make an appearance at the street theatre which was the Gun Hearings at the Minnesota State Senate, in the Hearing Room under the Capitol Rotunda. I wrote and have photos of the event here (scroll to the lower half of that post).
The February 22, Minneapolis Star Tribune, headlined “Groups battle over gun checks” on page B1 (you can read it here). (I notice, in the on-line version of the story, that they used a photo of the same guy I caught a little earlier in line – holstered pistol on right hip….)
Today’s editorial in the STrib was about the Gun issue.
Guns are hot. Deservedly so.
Of course, news in our society is predictable: “if it bleeds, it leads” seems still the mantra. So does conflict, as in “Groups battle over gun checks” (the STrib headline).
I was at the Thursday “battle”, and as best I could determine the only war was over who had the most buttons, and the gun side did win, it appeared. Maybe that’s why the guy is smiling in the photo, sporting his “Self Defense is a Human Right“:
(click to enlarge)
His button seemed more common than the more pleasant appearing opponents: “Minnesotans Against Being Shot”:
But my musing on this topic went in a differing direction when I saw the Star Tribune report on the hearing I had just attended.
In Minnesota, it is legal to carry a firearm into the Minnesota State Capitol: “When the legislative session opened in January, there were 523 [licensed permit-holders with right to carry weapons into the capitol]…”As of [February 21] that number had spiked to 723…By comparison, in 2012 there were only 56 new gun-carrying notifications during the entire year.”
(Star Tribune Feb 22)
There were lots of orderly people in those throngs waiting to get into the hearing on Thursday.
How many of them in the line were packing heat, like the now famous guy in the two photographs, mine and the STrib (see below)? (He seems to have been uniquely public about his right to bear arms.)

In line.  Note the holstered handgun

In line. Note the holstered handgun

What if all those 723 authorized to be armed and dangerous were in that line on Thursday, and their collective feelings of needing to defend themselves led to a group need to enforce their right to bear arms, and they did so?
What would happen?
Of course, nobody knows, but whether an organized armed insurrection to take over the State Capitol, or a Keystone Cops caper, the results would not have been pretty…and predictable.
“Self defense” works better in theory than it likely would in fact.
Gun sanity needs to replace the current rush to insanity.
Just my opinion.

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