Metafilter comment of the day.

August 20, 2009

It’s thoughts like these that keep me awake at night:

Scenairo: gun-toting person at Presidental town hall meeting actually draws his weapon for some reason. He is dropped by five sniper bullets coming from five different directions, all fired by secret service members. Other people present in the crowd with guns begin to fire back, not knowing what had just happened for certain.

This is not unforeseeable. The people carrying guns to the rallies are doing so because they want to make a subtle threat toward the politicians that they disagree with.

And yet, people wearing anti-Bush t-shirts in 2004 were ARRESTED for doing so.

Something is really wrong. I fear for our future. I had hoped that the Challenger explosion was going to be my generation’s equivalent of a Kennedy moment, but I no longer am sure that will remain the case.

I was alive but not yet three years old when Kennedy was assassinated.  9/11 was my Kennedy moment.  To this day I wake up and turn on the TV to see if anything else has blown up during the night.  I’m afraid to watch the news and more afraid not to.

It may be true that people have a right to openly carry guns.  I’ll concede that point, but it’s not enough for me.  What you have a right to do should be anybody’s lowest bare minimum standard of behavior.  Because what falls below that standard is what you should never do.

If you do have the right, and your decision making stops there, it means you don’t also care if doing it is kind, or helpful, or responsible, or smart.  And the people who don’t care about that stuff are the ones who scare the hell out of me.

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