Mon Feb 4, 2013, 12:17 PM
meegbear (25,438 posts)
The Rude Pundit: Observations on Insanity, Stalking, and Wayne LaPierre
Let us say, and why not, that you are a guy obsessed with a girl, a girl who once, in a moment of weakness, gave you her phone number, and perhaps you went on one date with her. She thought you were nice, but not her type, and, "Hey, have a good life; sure, we can be friends." But you are not a guy who gives up. You start to text her and call her, a little bit at first, but more and more frequently as she stops answering your texts, stops taking your calls. You follow her occasionally, seeing if she's meeting with other guys. You text dozens of time a day, you call her work, her friends, until eventually she takes a out a restraining order on you and you can be arrested for stalking if you contact her again.
If you work with the logic of the National Rifle Association and gun lovers, you are outraged. How can there be laws that prevent you from asserting your First Amendment rights to speak, to assemble peaceably? You never threatened her; you just caused her emotional distress, and, well, shit, isn't that her problem? Why should your rights be denied because they might cause harm to someone?
There's arguments about how broad some anti-stalking laws are, but, for the most part, they are accepted limitations on the First Amendment to the Constitution. Indeed, if someone, like this presumptive "you" (and, if this is really what "you" do, fuckin' stop it), were to continue to harass the victim, claiming you can do it because of the Bill of Rights, there's a good chance you'd be considered mentally ill and in need of treatment.
So it was that NRA Executive Vice President Wayne LaPierre and his combover of doom appeared on the show Fox "news" Sunday with Mike Wallace's loin fruit, Chris. The host actually treated LaPierre like a dangerous lunatic, which caused him to evolve from fish to lizard in the Rude Pundit's Media Figure Progression Chart. For is there not a point where, if you are so obsessed with something like guns, to the detriment of individuals, families, communities, hell, society in general, that you are actually, really mentally ill?
The Rude Pundit knows that 21st century America loves to put its freaks on display for us all to laugh at, but it's one appalling thing to mock the morbidly obese and functionally retarded family on Here Comes Honey Boo Boo. It's another level of appalling to put someone with mental illness on television or in a chair at a congressional hearing and take what they say as some kind of expertise. Listening to the NRA on guns is like getting housekeeping tips from the Unabomber.
On Fox, LaPierre continued to spin out the most extreme scenarios for which semi-automatic weapons might be used. "If you limit the American public's access to semi- automatic technology, you limit their ability to survive," he said. "If someone is invading your house, I mean, you shouldn't say you should only have five or six shots, you ought to have what you need to protect yourself -- a woman should. Not what a politician thinks is reasonable."
Look at that last part, "not what a politician thinks is reasonable." What does that mean? The Constitution is what politicians thought was reasonable. Every fucking law on the books is what politicians and the courts think is reasonable. Stalking laws and their limitations on the First Amendment are there because politicians think they're reasonable.
LaPierre advocates for armed anarchy, purely and simply, for the sake of preventing the government from saying, "You know, there's a few guns and a few kinds of magazines we have a problem with." You couple that with LaPierre's paranoia that President Obama is trying to figure out a way to take away everyone's guns, and what else do you need to diagnose a man or a group of people as insane?
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The Rude Pundit: Observations on Insanity, Stalking, and Wayne LaPierre (Original post)