Bringing Facts To A Gun Fight

10/11/2017 05:33 pm ET
Drew Angerer via Getty Images

What a surprise. A guy mows down more than 500 people with an assault rifle of some sort and all of a sudden Congressional Republicans, the NRA and their spokesperson, Donald Trump, are willing to have a “discussion” about gun laws. Charles Grassley, who never met a law protecting Second-Amendment “rights” he didn’t like, wants to hold hearings; Marco Rubio, who used a visit to Sturm, Ruger for a photo-op during his brief presidential campaign wants to insure that there are no ‘vulnerabilities’ in federal gun laws (whatever that means); and even Rep. Mark Meadows, head of the Congressional Freedom Caucus (a.k.a what’s left of the Tea Party) is open to considering a gun bill.  

Most everyone in Gun-nut Nation fell into line once Trump mumbled something on Tuesday about a discussion on gun laws as he was getting ready to fly to Puerto Rico before going on to Vegas the following day. There were some holdouts, of course, such as the nuts from Gun Owners of America who consider themselves to be the true holder of the flame for gun rights, but they can be ignored. As for Rush, he had to come up with some pathetic defense of Trump’s new “soft” position on guns, so he’s spinning the bizarrely-stupid idea that the president is “pretending” to be for a gun bill in order to get the left-wing media off his back.

And then we have the response of our friends in Fairfax, who rather than waiting a week and then blasting away which is what they did after Sandy Hook, have released a written statement supporting the idea that the ATF should review the accessory known as a bump-stock which can be used to make an AR or AK-style rifle fire full-auto even though the trigger is still re-set to its firing position after every shot.

So both sides are getting a little bit of what they want: the pro-gun gang aren’t discussing the banning of an actual gun and the gun-control crowd can finally say that the industry’s attempt to pass off assault weapons as something they call “modern sporting rifles” has just taken a big dent. But before the political posturing on both sides goes any further, there’s something you have to understand. Here we are a week beyond when the shots rang out, and we still don’t know whether, in fact, a gun with a bump-stock was used at all.

The cops who busted into the shooter’s room didn’t need five minutes to figure out which gun or guns he used in the assault. The floor was evidently littered with spent shell casings; look down at one and you instantly know the caliber of the gun. Then walk around the room, grab every gun in that caliber, put your hand around the barrel and the amount of heat coming off the carbon steel identifies the requisite gun. The cops were actually too busy taking pictures which were sold or given to various news websites to worry about the guns, which means this all-important crime scene was contaminated beyond belief.

And if you think I’m coming down too hard on the Las Vegas cops who reacted to the rampage in about as quick and effective a way as they could, think again. Not only do we have pictures of the guns floating around, but there’s also a picture of Paddock lying on the floor obviously very bloody and very dead. Who first posted this gem? Alex Jones – who else!

So now the entire political ruling class begins a debate about gun violence without having the faintest idea what they are talking about. What if the shooter was using a legally-purchased full-auto gun? What if it turns out that he bought what the gun industry would like you to believe is a “modern sporting rifle” and converted it into an automatic rifle without using a bump-stock? Engaging in a discussion about gun violence without any evidence-based information has become as normal as gun violence itself.

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