Saturday, December 15, 2012

A Petition to Put a Hot Tub in the Cafeteria

I'm not going to say much about the mass shooting in Newtown, Connecticut, because I don't care to add to the flood of reactive gibberish that is out there already.

My liberal law professor friend called for the repeal of the Second Amendment, saying that it "not relevant in today's society. A civilized society doesn't need armed citizens. We don't need a militia...." I had already been thinking along those lines myself -- that is, that the only way to get around the Second Amendment and the huge body of legal precedents that obstruct gun-control laws is to get rid of the Second Amendment itself, either repealing it or amending it. But phraseology like "relevant in today's society" and "civilized society" always set off alarms in my mind.  The bipartisan standby "We've got to do something!!!" is seldom far behind.  (I strongly urge that it replace IN GOD WE TRUST as the national motto.)

Then I got e-mail from Daily Kos, imploring me to sign their petition "asking President Obama to help start a national conversation about gun control.  "If we don't start talking now, when will we ever? And if the president doesn't lead the discussion, who will?"  We're talking, remember, about a president who has killed many innocent people during his time in office, and has joked about it; and who has yet to say anything remotely intelligent about any important issue, since his public persona is driven completely by marketing and PR considerations.  You'd have to be pretty slow to ask such a man for leadership in anything, except maybe killing more people, which he will do anyway; no need to ask.

Of course there's all the prattle about hugging kids, and praying; the picture above was up on Facebook last night.  It might, just maybe, help people far from the incident feel better.  As a thoughtful response, it helps to remind me why Life of Pi annoyed me so much: it demolishes any claim that religion deals with catastrophe and suffering better than alternative worldviews.  If religion is the opiate of the people, it's not an effective one.