Sunday, January 27, 2008

Virginia guns down reform, while arms race heats up in national parks

Remember Virginia Tech? C'mon- it wasn't that long ago. A troubled student bought some guns (one from a pawn shop and one from a licensed dealer) and murdered 32 students, which led to a public outcry to eliminate the loopholes in the laws regarding gun sales and purchases. Imagine that! Some people actually thought that guns shouldn't be made available to nutball sociopaths.

Well, their voices were heard loud and clear , and the Virginia legislature responded by referring the matter to the House Militia, Police and Public Safety Committee, which, after due deliberation, killed legislation that would have required unlicensed sellers to conduct background checks on people buying weapons at gun shows. The reason?-- The killer didn't buy his weapons at a gun show. Oh, OK then. I'm thinking that maybe Virginia isn't a good place to attend school. Or visit.

Meanwhile, it seems we have an arms race about to spiral out of control in our national parks.In September, I reported that the National Park Service had placed an order for 700 Tasers, and speculated why the Park Service would need such weapons. (I still don't know)

Now we find that Tasers may not be sufficient for whatever nefarious purposes the Park Service has in mind, because 47 (!?!) Senators have written to the Secretary of the Interior asking him to lift the ban on carrying ready-to-fire weapons in national parks and wildlife refuges.

If, beyond all reason, this is allowed, poor Ranger Bob with his puny little Taser is going to be hopelessly undergunned. In order for the good Rangers to keep our national parks a safe, enjoyable destination for families, they will be forced to upgrade their weaponry to include Hand grenades, CS gas, howitzers, Tech 9's, and anything else required to win a firefight with the gun-toters. The gun contingent, of course, will not cede superiority to the Rangers, and will respond in kind. And so the race is on.

The insanity is making me crazy.

No comments: