The New Normal. Guns, The Flip Side. We need ’em.

Parody: something so bad as to be equivalent to intentional mockery; a travesty.

Welcome to the NEW NORMAL: Guns, The Flip Side. We need ‘em.

This is a revision of a post from Jan. 2013 after Sandy Hook in Newtown. Now there’s Mandalay Bay. If you didn’t believe it then, will you now?

Yeah, I just put out my 3-yr plan to get rid of guns, Mafioso style. As if that would work. Besides, nobody read it. Hell, Congress won’t even get rid of high-bullet magazines or assault rifles. So I started thinking about the real reason we need guns. Yes we DO need them. Sorry Bill Maher.

The problem is history, freedom and, most importantly, trust.

The history: the FBI estimates the  USA has about 300 million guns (and rising daily since Newtown). Yet now they say it’s 600 million. What a difference a few mass shootings makes.

Freedom: to use them anytime. We got ‘em we can shoot ‘em. So if you make new gun laws we will ignore them, just like the old ones. We don’t even pay attention to simple laws like stop signs, speed limits, or, making it more current, lying over the internet about our girlfriend dying of cancer to gain sympathy and more votes for the Heisman, lying about illegal use of steroids so you can win the Tour de France seven years running and make millions of dollars, lying to our constituents about taking money from lobbyist to gain office, beating our wives or children . . . I could go on and on, but you get it. I hope.

The last issue is trust. Why should I trust that I won’t get robbed walking at night in New Orleans, that my wife won’t be raped at night in Chicago, that someone won’t carjack me in LA? You know, I heard of a robber that forced their way into a home in Boulder, posing as a Mormon. We need guns because we don’t trust people. Not unreasonable. Did you know that there were over 11 million crimes committed in the USA in 2009. That’s one crime for every 100 people. What are the stats in your city? Murder rate, assault, rape, robbery, vandalism, drunk and disorderly, drug abuse, impersonating a Mormon? Lack of trust is in our genes, our country’s constitution, how the West was won (White Man speak with forked tongue), the CIA, our very jobs where everything has to be in writing about sexual harassment, sick leave, using cellphones, etc., etc., etc. We don’t trust our family, our friends, our priests, our bosses, our police, our military, or any other damn country in the world.

We have 300 600 million guns, the freedom to use them, either bad or good, and there are too many bad people out there to trust any stranger. Gotta have a gun. Simple. 

So, forget gun laws. They’ll never work.

Let’s focus on the insane. If we cure all of them, we will never have another Newtown, right? Are you shittin’ me? Do you have ANY idea how many people are on valium, lorazepam, Zoloft, Celexa, Abilify, Lunesta, Trazadone, Fluoxetine, Lithium, Aripiprazole, Quetiapine, Carbamazepine, Divalproex . . . and the list is literally endless. I bet half the third grade class in the good old USA is on Ritalin. How do you identify these “crazies?” Do you subpoena doctor’s records across the country to get a list of all the crazy people they’re treating? Once you have them all identified, how are you going to make them all better? You obviously know more about treating them than their doctor. Or is it just the ones that are not getting treatment? Okay, let’s round up all the crazy homeless people and put them in institutions. That will go over big, like the movie that made Jack Nicholson famous as a crazy man in One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest. Okay, fine, just put them in jail. Our prison system is not overcrowded. Much. Wait, you say, I just want to keep the crazies from getting guns. You need to get that MRI quick. You already forgot the first few paragraphs above.

So, forget curing all the crazy people. That’s out.

We are left with lots of guns, lots of bad people we need protection from, lots of crazy people who can easily get guns from good people, bad people, or Wal-Mart, because it’s a free country and nobody wants to enforce the existing gun laws or change them.

Maybe we should just require all those good people who have guns to keep them from the bad or crazy people. Make them prove how well they secure their guns, keep them under lock and key. Problem is then we have to find all the gun owners, go to their humble and sacred abodes and inspect their security systems. That’s out, too. Hell, the NRA won’t even let doctors ask patients if they are keeping their guns locked up.

So, forget keeping guns safe by any laws. Period. Lock that one away. Throw away the key.

We just have to rely on all those gun owners to be good people, keep their guns secure and make sure no crazy or bad people get ahold of their guns.

What a new thought. We’ve been doing that for over a century. Worked well so far. Back to square one.

Let’s face it: We are at the NEW NORMAL. Yep that’s it, folks. The New Normal is that schools, sports games, movie theaters, crowded highway underpasses, any place you used think was safe is now a danger zone for a crazy with an automatic weapon and a grudge. Or maybe he is just a smart psychopath and no one in the world will ever know he’s crazy. But he has a gun! (Could be a she, too. Don’t count them out. Think of how many abused wives and raped female veterans there are, not to mention all those repressed in jobs due to their sex. God help the man from a woman scorned. Women caught up to men with lung cancer, so why should this new cancer of the gun be any different? Give ‘em time. )

The New Normal requires the same thing we did after 9/11 with airport security. We need security in all those previously safe places, and more, roaming the streets at night in those bad neighborhoods, keeping us safe from invasions. The good thing is there will be lots of jobs for those veterans returning from Afghanistan. There are others we want to hire, too. Job qual: can shoot and likes to wear a uniform, a bullet proof vest, Taser, Glock 17, and enjoys patrolling around movie theaters or being close to little kids. (Hmm, that sounds a little crazy to me.) You might have to make a law at the school so they won’t be watching videos or playing games or Tweeting on their smartphones instead of patrolling. Another law. Geez.

The NEW NORMAL: The USA is a war zone. The only thing we have to fear is each other. Bring us your tired, your poor, your starving, your mercenaries. We have just the job for them.  

I don’t know about you, but this sucks. I’m going to buy a gun.

And then I’ll write another thriller with lots of killing and maiming and torture, how we can’t trust the CIA or our doctor, how an ordinary citizen hiding in your midst could be a serial killer, because that shit is here to stay and everyone loves it. (Tongue out, Nanny-nanny boo-boo.)

 

Milt

300 million. Guns or people?

A little less than 5 years ago I posted the below about Newtown. Since then, we’ve found out there are way more guns than 300 million

We have become a nation of gun massacres. We’ve blamed it on crazy people, on terrorists, but somehow the elephant in the closet keeps from being addressed: GUNS, GUNS, GUNS. Now we have a new shooting. Mandalay Bay in Las Vegas.

Gun owners say they need guns to protect themselves. How many of those at that country western concert at Mandalay Bey were gun owners. Didn’t help them a bit.

The shooter they keep trying to make into a crazed monster, but they can’t quite make it stick with this guy. He was touted as a nice guy, even wired $100,000 dollars to the Philippines to pay for a new house for his girlfriend’s family. Why would he do that, then kill all country western music fans at Mandalay Bay? Did he secretly hate the NRA and hope that killing some of it’s staunchest supporters would get some action? Wow! How stupid would that be. Or would it? We may never know. But we do know he had guns, and lots of them.

What is the common thread in all of these mass shootings? NOT CRAZY PEOPLE, NOT TERRORISTS, BUT GUNS, GUNS, GUNS.

5 Years ago at Newtown.

Yesterday, the tragedy in Newtown, Connecticut struck me and many other parents hard. My wife wept. President Obama shed tears at a news conference. Gun control advocates across the world harangued. What did the NRA do? Hid in a closet. No comment. Don’t call us to your gun control debate the morning after, Chris Hayes, because we want things to settle out before we say anything.

What do you think gun owners did? The same thing they did when Obama was elected president, when there was a mass shooting in Aurora, when Gabby Giffords was shot, the same thing they did and will do after every bad thing that happens related to guns: They go out and buy another gun, or two, or five, especially something that might be outlawed soon, like an assault rifle.

So the question I keep asking myself is what can we do now, right now, to keep another Newtown from happening in two days, or two weeks, in my town, to my daughter or my son the teachers, to my grandson with his whole life ahead of him? Can we take away every gun from every gun owner? Hardly. So there will still be three hundred million guns out there, in another two weeks, probably way more because all the current gun owners will go out and by more, fearing stronger gun laws in the near future.

Should we give every teacher and principal and movie-ticket counter a gun to shoot at anyone who starts opening up? Nope. They’d probably shoot the wrong person, or freeze up when called to action. Even trained police officers freeze and their aim is off when confronted with an assault rifle-toting madman.

The whole purpose, according to NRA members, for allowing us to carry guns is the second amendment: “the right of the people to keep and bear arms,” supposedly to prevent the military from taking over, allowing citizens to fight off an unwanted police state, to make those gun owners feels safer. Yet, over the years, Americans amassing three hundred million–make that 600 million guns has made a culture where we feel just the opposite—more afraid—and it is not from the military, or the police, it’s from everyday ordinary places: a movie theater, a grade school, a high school, a McDonald’s. We are afraid to send our kids to school without a cellphone to let us know if something bad is happening. We sit at the theater in an aisle seat to be able to run if someone starts opening up with an AK-47. And now we all want to homeschool our kids. They will never leave our sight.

 

Almost old enough to go to preschool.

How do you change a culture that believes they must have guns to protect themselves? You make that fear go away. You develop laws that prevent the police and the military from taking over. Haven’t we done that? Or do we still fear the police? The military? The government? If we trust the government to do the right thing, because, after all this is a democracy, THE DEMOCRACY, where we elected those officials we trust to do the right thing, then why don’t we let them protect us and we throw away our guns? “Not unless you pry the gun from my cold, dead hands,” says a gun owner.

We won’t get rid of the guns we have, won’t let the government come in and take them, so we’re left with three hundred million guns (Oh, yeah. I forgot, much more in a few weeks).

All I can think of is we bump up security in every place there might be a possible mass murder by a madman. We require everyone to go through a metal detectors at all schools, movie theaters, sporting events, super markets, department stores, restaurants, train stations, bus stations, business meetings, etc., etc., etc. We hire people who won’t freeze up when they must fire their guns, prior military; those that would be mercenaries in foreign countries will be back here, protecting Americans, and contributing to the local economy. Lots of jobs would open up, help immensely with the recession. And all those gun owners with the need to use their gun against a bad guy would be able to do just that.

Of course, there might be one or two bad apples in those security mercs hired to protect your kids at Columbine High School. They might have had an issue with one of the teachers when they were there, before they went off to Afghanistan, and now can get rid of a bunch of teachers in one fell swoop.

Hmm. Beefing up security might not work. Maybe it boils down to changing the culture, teaching people to deal with disagreements, with adversity by using something besides violence. And maybe it would help if we stopped selling weapons of mass destruction, like AK-47’s or other semi-automatic guns. Maybe, just maybe, if we three hundred million people learned to get along with each other, disagree without hurting, work out differences by talking and looking for peaceful solutions, maybe we would ignore those three hundred million guns, they would rust and become antiques. And if the United States of America, the most powerful country in the history of the world, could do that, maybe other countries would follow our lead.

I guess, in the end, it boils down to both things. We must beef up security right away, as much as we can afford, prioritizing the right places to hire extra people, the right people, and put in metal detectors, or personnel searches. At the same time we have to work on the culture of violence and need to have guns. It must come from leaders as well as parents, teachers and anyone involved in teaching about dealing with adversity, and anyone involved already with guns. Rethink why you own one, what would happen if the wrong person got it. Agree that we must tighten the laws of gun ownership so 100%, not just 60% of guns bought have a thorough background search of the potential owner.

We must continue to push basic human values of respecting one another without getting in their face. After all, what’s more important, those three hundred million guns or three hundred million people? A little love might help. Add music, some dance, and pretty soon we would all be partying instead of shooting. One could only hope.
And then there’s cookies.

Don’t fight. Have a cookie.

Have one, you might chill out. And if you haven’t hugged your grandson, your daughter, your son, your spouse, your friend, do it now. Trust me, it’s much better than holding cold steel.

If you haven’t contacted your Congressman about getting rid of guns, please do.

Milt

The next post is a follow up on this.

How to get rid of guns: The 3-year plan

This post was originally written after Newtown. I’ve added some things.

So here we are, one week after Newtown, one week after 20 children were killed in minutes by another man with a gun. Do we have any new laws about guns yet? Ummm. No.

Lot of talk. Yibber, yabber. “Make all those automatic rifles illegal.” Yeah that’ll do it. Probably get passed in 2013, or maybe 2014 or 2015, or maybe never–Yup!

We never passed a gun law against assault weapons after 2002 law was rescinded.

2017 Update on gun laws

Why haven’t we got any new assault weapon gun laws?

The NRA lobbies all those Congressmen who want to get elected with NRA money,  Texans and their oil money contribute to TV ads about why changing gun laws won’t matter. After all, “Guns don’t kill. It’s the people who pull the trigger, particularly crazy people.”

If there wasn’t a trigger to pull, no one could kill 20 kids in minutes with a gun. Not crazy people, not smart premeditated sociopaths, not teenagers with a grudge. Of course there are still bombs. There you go again, trying to change the subject. Let’s concentrate on guns.

I’ve got a great proposal to get action faster, in the next year instead of a decade. You see, I know how hard it is to get things changed in people. I see it every day. Ask someone to stop smoking to prevent a heart attack, a stroke, lung cancer, or worsening asthma in their kids. Nah, Doc, I like my smokes. But when they actually get that heart attack, or stroke, or lung cancer, or their kid almost dies in ICU from an asthma attack? Everything changes in a Marlboro minute. You just need motivation. Ask any mafia boss: Threaten their lives? You get action.

So here’s my Mafioso suggestion: It’s a three-year plan, gives gun owners a chance to get used to the new world.

First year, the kicker year:

Put a trace on all registered guns. Find out where they are in the community. Put their names on the internet. Top of the list, put anyone who owns an assault weapon. At the same time make a law that they have one year to turn those assault weapons in, or go to jail. If you turn it in in that year, you get a tax deduction. A BIG TAX DEDUCTION! BIGGER IF YOU TURN IT IN WITHIN A WEEK.

Now here’s the kicker:

On day 364, at the stroke of midnight, not a second longer, all those guns are taken, confiscated, by force if necessary, and the owner jailed, five years for every automatic weapon confiscated that is registered. Any illegal ones found—life sentence. Any resistance, shoot ‘em. If they are in public office, other than a legal gun-toting law enforcement officer, they get fired, no pension and put in federal penitentiary for treason along with a front page mug shot on the New York Times, and of course the internet.

I think after a year, instead of 300 million guns there will only be 200 million.

Second year: go after ALL rifles.

Third year: go after ALL the handguns.

 

Of course there will be holdouts, illegal ones at that. They get death sentence if illegal. Others, double time in jail, no parole.

After three years you might have a few hundred thousand guns out there. Now that’s action.

What about people who hunt? They can only rent a gun from a bona fide, licensed outfitter, and only for the time they are hunting. They can only practice at registered shooting galleries, be they outside or in, after first renting the gun there.

Who will enforce it? Why those we trust in law enforcement and the military. You do trust them, don’t you? You better. They will soon be the only ones with guns. As it should be.

Maybe a little harsh? Ask any parent of a Newtown kid killed. They will agree, and may want even worse, like maybe shooting the owners first born.

THE END RESULT: a country without guns.

How it worked in Australia.

How many police would we actually need? The police we had might actually be able to concentrate on the illegal guns. There might be a lot more urban families with fathers.

Granted, after the first year you might have more crowded jails. But I think if you were really serious, and the gun owners saw that, maybe they would give up quicker. Of course maybe you would have a war on your hands. But at least the war would be about something important, saving kids and innocent people instead of oil.

Milt

*** NEW NOVEL ***

 Welcome to the age of Genetic Modification of plants, animals and HUMAN BEINGS

Click on cover to FIND OUT MORE!Would you modify your daughter’s DNA to end war forever?

Anodyne Eyes is a sequel to Dan’s War and  The Next Daywith many of the same characters, though Jabril has a new twist!

 

Fill in below form to get a FREE copy of The Next Day, a post 9/11 sci-fi thriller that begins the saga.

Genetically modified bio-warfare viruses change fun loving Alex into a monster he hates, and an emotionally unstable Jabril into a monster he loves. Can Alex save the human race from Jabril?



Other Books and Short Stories

Other Novels

 

HUMOROUS ILLUSTRATED POEM ABOUT A BAD DAY FLYFISHING

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Click here to order TTFF on Barnes and Noble

                                                            

SHORT STORIES ABOUT VETERANS

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Excerpts

By Milt Mays

. . .
Should’ve stayed in the Navy. Shit happens, though.

Like that morning

The Hawaiian sea breeze cools my face, the sun warms my back and, son of a bitch, two aces! Life doesn’t get much better.

Air raid sirens crack the peace.

“Another dumbass drill,” Earl says, sitting cross-legged and staring at his cards. He’s our complainer. Gotta have one.

I stand tall and crane my neck. Planes fly in low, too low, with those terrible red circles on the sides. “Jesus!” I yell. “This ain’t no drill, boys. Those are Japs!”
Torpedoes and bombs, screams and explosions, wailing sirens, smoke and blood—it scares me, scares me dumb and deaf. . .

Short story in a collection called THE WATER HOLDS NO SCARS

 

The Water Holds No Scars

ALL PROFITS GO TO PROJECT HEALING WATERS FLY FISHING

The Drive-in Hole

By Milt Mays

Two things a man needs when he crosses into late fall: love and a good hobby. I guess there’s three. Warmth. You get that inside with the first two, but outside warmth becomes more important as the first days of winter approach. Guess that’s why I’ve moved my late fall fishing closer to summer. It gives me three out of three.

The oars creak, the September sun warms my shoulder, and I sit in the front seat of the wooden drift boat Scott made, changing my fly for the next hole on the Bighorn. In the first casts on the last hole, my shoulder reminded me of thousands in the past. Time also taught me it’s time for a hopper. . . . (click on above cover to read more)

SHORT STORY

IRAQ INJURED HIM, BUT NOT HIS SPIRIT

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By Milt Mays

He turns off the alarm with his good hand, the left one, and catches himself turning towards her, but squelches the initial instinct to give her a morning kiss. Maybe some day. Months after he returned, neither of them could figure out the best sleeping arrangements. But after a year now, it’s second nature to sleep on the right side of the bed. He can roll over, turn off the alarm and leave without her ever seeing his face.

“Wh …” She clears the rough sleep from her throat. “What are you doing? Why did the alarm go off?”

He sits on the side of the bed, his back to her, scrunching the toes of his right foot in the carpet. Oh, man. That shag feels good between the toes. Then the left leg interrupts. The sore spot on the center of the stump needs a closer look, but he’ll do that once he’s in the bathroom.

“Riley, it’s only six.” She sounds sexy, gravel in there and timbered low, serious. “Why’re you getting up so early?”  . . .

Wanna read the rest, click on above cover.

Thanks.

Milt