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A tombstone in an old, Wild West cemetery in Arizona is chiseled with the last thoughts of a young gunslinger: “I was expecting this, but not so soon.”
Many politicians these days are hot to return to the gun slinging days of yesteryear. The answer to violent crime, they say, is simple: allow all law-abiding citizens to pack heat wherever they go.
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Sure enough, in May, Congress passed a law okaying concealed weapons in our national parks. Now, they say, families will feel so much safer knowing that if some Charlie Manson goes on a rampage at Yellowstone, vacationers from Peoria and Poughkeepsie will be ready to spring out of their minivans and gun him down.
Worried about your kid being massacred by a weirded-out wacko in math class? Hey, pack a piece in you kid’s backpack. Going across state lines on a golfing adventure? Carry your Glock as well as your wedge. Also, you never know who’s gonna be in a bar, so always keep your own shots handy. And wouldn’t church service be much more serene if parishioners felt that reassuring heft of a godly weapon in their pockets? Large numbers of politicos wave around the Second Amendment bellowing that Americans should be free to carry concealed weapons everywhere.
Everywhere? Well, they do make one particular exception to their John Waynish absolutism: Their own workplace.
The thought of an armed citizenry being allowed inside our national and state capitals cause these bellicose Wild West gunslingers to blanch – and to weasel on their position that concealed weapons make everyone safer. Indeed, they hide behind metal detectors and armed guards to ban gun-toting constituents from even entering America’s legislative halls.
If lawmakers are so adamant that guns belong in our schools and parks, why are our congress critters so afraid of the American people bringing them inside Congress?
“Arm the Senate!” www.washingtonpost.com, July 27, 2009.
“Senate votes down expansion of gun rights,” www.statesman.com, July 23, 2009.
“Guns and Forcing Congress to Fend For Their Own Safety,” Email from Tom W, July 27, 2009.