Thursday, October 15, 2015

2nd Amendment For 2nd Class Citizens!

As a fan of Joel Hodgson from Mystery Science Theater 3000, I obviously have no problems with a sleepy-eyed protagonist, but even I have to wonder if Ben Carson's evident narcolepsy might not disqualify him from the presidency. (Why worry about that "3 AM phone call" if the leader of the Free World is just as likely to be snoozing face-down in his morning bowl of Maypo?)

But then I read about how, as a young resident at Johns Hopkins, he foiled the armed robbery of a Popeyes Chicken franchise, just like Clint Eastwood did in the 1983 Dirty Harry film, Sudden Impact.  The two events are so eerily similar, in fact, that I suspect Carson's heroics may have inspired the scene in the movie, although they obviously spiced it up a bit for the screen (in the picture, Clint blows away most of the criminals, then challenges the last one to, "Go ahead...Make my day," while Carson helpfully pointed out the cashier to the gunman, then breezed out, whistling perhaps, or munching on a biscuit [had to be one or the other, since I know from personal experience that you can't do both simultaneously; especially not at the dinner table when your dad's sitting within back-of-the-head-smacking distance].)

Ben wasn't bragging, by the way; he only pulled out this artifact of badassery to prove he wasn't blaming the victims of the Umpqua shooting when he panned their response by saying, "Not only would I probably not cooperate with [the killer], I would not just stand there and let him shoot me, I would say, ‘Hey guys, everybody attack him.'" Then, based on past performance, Ben would gesture at his fellow victims and advise the killer, "Shoot them! THEM!", and then probably go out to Popeyes for a Butterfly Shrimp Tackle Box™ ("8 butterfly shrimp, fries, biscuit & cocktail sauce". Granted, that may seem like a lot for one person, but take it from Ben, cheating Death works up an appetite; plus, as the sole survivor he's now eating for eight.)
Why tackle a gunman when you can Tackle The Shrimp!

Dr. Carson found himself on slightly less firm footing when he suggested that victims of the Holocaust could have nipped that whole thing in the bud by packing heat, but couldn't back it up by recollecting that one time in Baltimore when Nazis tried to ship him off to Treblinka, but he distracted them by pointing out the nearest Jew.

A lot of people suggested that outnumbered amateurs with hunting rifles wouldn't be likely to fare well against stormtroopers (the Nazi kind, not the Star Wars kind, because those guys can't shoot for crap), and since European Jews (and others marked as sub-human by the Third Reich) didn't know they were being removed to death camps (they were being "resettled"), they had little incentive to stage suicidal, Ruby Ridge-style last stands on their doorsteps. And of course, when armed resistance was eventually offered -- in the Warsaw Ghetto uprising -- it was rather quickly put down by an enemy equipped with artillery, mortars, machine guns, and all the other military-grade arms that -- even today -- only a select few of our bat-shittiest sovereign citizens have managed to stockpile.

Nevertheless, Dr. Carson remains committed to his Second Amendment As a Cure for the Common Shoah theory, and if anything, he seems inclined to double down on it. So rather than arguing with him, I'd just like to ask a follow-up question. Or rather, I'd like some journalist to ask it for me, since I'll never be in the same room with the guy.

1.  Should Japanese-Americans have refused to surrender their guns to U.S. authorities in World War II?  Please note, Dr. Carson, I'm not asking if the government had the right to confiscate their weapons, because as American citizens they were certainly entitled to the same Constitutional protections as their neighbors; my question is, should they have refused to give up their guns?

2.  When the government forced Japanese-Americans to abandon their homes and property, should they have violently resisted relocation, as you say Europeans Jews were morally obliged to do? In other words, would they have been justified in shooting any Sheriff's Deputies or doughboys who showed up at their doors, ready to hustle them into a bus? After all, they knew they were being sent to concentration camps (what we'd call "FEMA Camps" today) so could they, and should they, have stopped this historic injustice by taking up arms and fighting their oppressors, just as you retroactively counseled the Jews to do?

And if not, why not?

9 comments:

Li'l Innocent said...

It's Scott! Hey! How're they (your vertebrae) flexin'? If that isn't too hideously insensitive a question?

A whole cauldron full of historical type questions raised in that fantasy challenge of Dr. Ben's fantasy speculations, wow. I have been teased before on WOC for being too serious, but really, does anyone know what the laws in 1930s Deutschland about private gun ownership were? Different countries at different periods had very specific laws forbidding Jews to do this and that - another possible point of research.

I was watching a Brit TV drama the other day that is set during WW2 (Foyle's War, one of the finest series the English have come up with in recent times, btw) - during one episode of which a character is charged by the police with unlawfully discharging a firearm in a public place.

It's enough to make you burst into tears.

Psst, Dr. Ben - you need your head examined. I don't think you really want to be president - who takes "time off from campaigning" to go on a book tour?? - but you're not helping.

Katy Williams said...

The trouble with asking gun nuts difficult questions is they might shoot you, or one of their even crazier friends my drive by your place and shoot out the windows. The NRA and all those crazies have gotten away with a lot, including murder! because people are scared of them! I doubt they'd really like it at all if every American was armed. Nope.

Smut Clyde said...

3. When a future Trump-Carson administration forces overstayers and undocumented immigrants to leave their homes and properties, should they violently resist repatriation, taking up arms against the fascist bully-boys from Homeland Security?

Meanie-meanie, tickle a person said...

Different countries at different periods had very specific laws forbidding Jews to do this and that

Yeah. Like, say, working, walking around free, in some cases actually living...
In 1938 Adolpf loosened firearms regulations on everyone but Jews. A fact of which I'm sure Dr Ben is blissfully unaware of.

Agree on Foyle. One of my favorites. Brit TV has spoiled me for American fare, which FZ might have described as "incompetently written, badly directed (and acted) consumer entertainment things"...

grouchomarxist said...

Completely agree about Foyle. Most American TV is an "entertainment product", in the same sense that Cheez Whiz is a "food product".

This article from Salon has a quick primer on gun control in the Third Reich (and a link to a more detailed run-down) but yep, the Nazis loosened the Weimar-era gun laws. Jews and other undesirables were prohibited from owning firearms; party members were of course exempt from any regulations.

But really, as Scott points out, this idea that if only the Jews had had a buncha guns they would have scared them Nazis off is just plain fucking delusional. The gun fondlers are a cult -- with a distinctly brownshirt-y flavor -- and there's no limit to the stupid things cultists will believe.

Now, I own several pistols. Which are kept unloaded, and hidden separate from the ammunition, which is also hidden. (Believe me, with our clutter, no smash-and-grab burglary would be likely to unearth them.) And of course if I had children around the house this would all be kept under lock and key.

I have the pistols because I enjoy target shooting, which is something I've done since I was a kid. (It has something to do with growing up in the South, in a family where my Dad and brothers were hunters.) Not because I like to indulge in Dirty Harry/home defense fantasies.

I had no problem with submitting to a background check and wait period when I bought my Ruger target pistol. I have no interest in carrying these things around, concealed or otherwise. AFAIC, if the authorities are going to be stupid enough to allow such a thing, at the very least anyone who does want to walk around strapped should get a thorough background check, plus a psychiatric evaluation. And have to undergo rigorous training before they're given a permit. All of which would be repeated at regular, frequent intervals afterward, or they lose the permit.

Frankly, I don't think concealed or open carry should be allowed at all, except where the individual can prove a real need for self-defense.

Smut Clyde said...

In 1938 Adolpf loosened firearms regulations on everyone but Jews.

That is unpossible, for Carson has also assured us that the German people would have resisted Hitler's policies if only they had had access to weapons.

I fought the lawn. And the lawn won. said...

Rarely is the question asked: was it the Founder's Intent for black people to bear arms?

Gary McCammon said...

Re: question #2, no, because only white Libertarian guys are allowed to violently resist the evil occupation forces from Washington, DC. I mean, if you'd allow that, why not allow undocumented immigrants being deported forcefully by DHS to resist? The Second Amendment is only about Caucasians, after all.

Anonymous said...

ANNTI sez...

LAND-OWNING MALE CAUCASIANS, you mean...

And, y'know, until 1920, VOTING, too...

And 'til around, oh, TWO-THOUSAND-AND-ONE, same voting issue for black folks in Florida, as well...