You know what is perhaps the most infuriating thing to deal with in the realm of news and public debate?

An idea that is, either through extreme ignorance or deliberate mendacity, completely and easily verifiably wrong, yet still popular and oft repeated.

The perfect example from today’s headlines: the sniper and gun control, and especially the issue of “barrel/bullet DNA.”

I’m not going to use this space to repeat the arguments about how banning “sniper rifles” is stupid, unless you want to ban just about every gun, since a sniper rifle is not significantly different than a hunting rifle, one of the most basic kinds of guns owned in this country. Nor will I reiterate the well-made point that gun “DNA” is a ridiculous concept, since anyone with a new barrel or a nail file and a few minutes on their hands can completely change a gun’s “DNA” (If only real genetic manipulation were that easy, we’d be seeing apples the size of Buicks and chickens with 10 breasts and 18 legs by tomorrow) .

Rather, I will simply comment on how irritating it is that this idea of more gun control would have stopped the sniper, and that we need to enact new laws to stop such attacks in the future.

This isn’t like arguing about the war in Iraq. It’s not like debating the merits of social security privatization or school vouchers. It’s like saying the sky is not blue, but red . It’s like saying that the sun revolves around the Earth. It’s like saying that Michael Moore is funny.

All of the mainstream discussions about more gun control stopping the sniper have centered on the two points of banning “sniper rifles” and “gun fingerprinting.” And as long as the discussion is framed in this way, the people doing the talking are idiots, which means that recently we’ve suddenly got a lot more people who have revealed themselves publicly to be idiots .

If they wish to come right out and say “Let’s just ban all guns everywhere,” then fine. I welcome them to. I won’t agree, and I’ll vehemently point out the various ways that guns being outlawed increases violence and crime, but those are points about which people can actually have a meaningful argument.

But gun fingerprinting and banning “sniper rifles” are both non-issues, and every silly reporter or pundit who trots them out should be pointed out as the uninformed cretin that they are.

last update : 19-4-2018

Comments are closed.