JEFF PEARLMAN

Coming October 2022: "The Last Folk Hero: The Life and Myth of Bo Jackson"

Guns, guns, guns, guns

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Two presidents on guns. First, the one Republicans (mostly) loved …

Then, the one Democrats (mostly) love …

Both sensible. Both reasoned. Both ignored by the modern NRA and the pro-gun movement. Without nuance. Without debate. Without internal dialogue. Just … they’re wrong. They must be wrong. They have to be wrong. Because the Second Amendment is absolute, dammit, and even though it’s an amendment (look up the meaning of the word, “amend”) and even though times change and people adapt, well, there’s no changing gun laws, or giving in, or trying anything new. Because that would be restricting the rights of citizens. Like making people wear seatbelts. Which has been just … just—never mind.

I have a horrible habit; one I struggle to suppress. When something happens with guns in America, I go to Twitter and argue with morons who think nothing should be done about access to firearms. Dolts like, well, these folks …

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And you know what happens? Nothing. They don’t bend and I become a lunatic. Why? Because I can’t stand this any longer. I just can’t. I don’t understand being so stubbornly wed to a position that—even when mass slaughter is involved—you refuse to bend. And I know … I know—conservatives will say, “Well, what about abortion?” Here’s my answer: I have bent on abortion. So have many people I know. Do I believe it should be legal? Yes. Do I consider it murder, per se? No. But do I also believe there must be restrictions on the age of the fetus? Yes, I do.

But what about you, Mr. NRA? Mr. Second Amendment? Would you bend a little, without freaking out about your rights being taken away and the government coming after your stash? Would you consider, perhaps, longer waiting periods? Or a strict limit on magazine size? How about mental health screenings for every person applying for a gun license? Or how about all guns need to be registered in a federal database? There are a million potential things we can try. But will you budge?

Answer: You won’t. Not until some lunatic kills 50 in a mass NRA meeting shooting. Actually, scratch that. It won’t work. Because after he kills 50, then someone shoots him—you’ll thank God a gun protected the survivors. See, that’s the thing. There’s no reasoning with you; no debate or negotiations. You won’t budge. At. All.

So here’s my solution: Let;s give NRA the state of Texas. All your members can live there. It’s huge, there’s affordable housing. Hell, you can even have Pres. Rick Perry. You guys have fun with your guns, shooting one another, listening to Lee Greenwood songs, eating large quantities of steak. Meanwhile, we’ll stick here in the U.S.A.

Where guns have been outlawed.

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