Sunday’s church shooting in Sutherland Springs, Texas, was still on the minds of conservative pundits on Tuesday. Commentary’s Noah Rothman wrote that the only honest debate to be had over gun control—given that the shooter was already legally barred from owning a gun—is over gun confiscation:
Liberal gun-control advocates without pretensions to mass appeal cite the government-backed seizure of Australia’s 650,000 guns in 1990 as a model to follow. Even Barack Obama praised Australia’s ability to “craft laws that almost eliminate mass shootings.” But these and other liberals speaking exclusively to liberals do not contend with the fact that there are roughly 462 times as many firearms in the U.S. today as there were in Australia in 1990, and they don’t address the constitutional amendment that must be crafted and ratified before this involuntary program is implemented.
To do so would be to confront the unfeasibility of their policy preferences. So the bastions of intellectual argument in this country are resigned to imagine and finger wag, all the while dancing around their true preference—one that would almost certainly result in fewer acts of mass gun violence. That would be the honest debate that gun control proponents claim they seek, shorn entirely of “diversionary” talking points. The problem for these self-styled advocates for honesty is that theirs is a losing proposition.
The Federalist’s David Harsanyi argued that bringing a gun to church is “a pretty good idea”:
I can think of at least two incidents off the top of my head in which church parishioners likely stopped a massacre because they had guns.
One was at the New Life Church in Colorado in 2007, when a woman named Jeanne Assam, part of a volunteer armed security team, shot an anti-Christian gunman who had already opened fire on parishioners and held a bag of weapons, 1,000 rounds, and a pipe bomb. The other was last year, when a 22-year-old church usher in Antioch, Tennessee named Robert Engle tackled a shooter and, despite head injuries, ran out to his car in the parking lot, grabbed a gun, and held the shooter at gunpoint until police arrived.
Even at the Sutherland Springs Baptist church, a man named Stephen Willeford managed to shoot Devin Kelley at the church, police officials said, and when the mass shooter fled Willeford asked another citizen, Johnnie Langendorff, to chase down Kelley, which he did until the gunman wiped out and shot himself. Perhaps Kelley was off to kill more. We don’t know.
National Review’s David French praised Willeford. “Willeford modestly says that he’s not a hero,” he wrote. “But he most certainly is. When the government failed — it failed to enforce its own laws, and its law enforcement officers couldn’t arrive in time to stop the slaughter — a private citizen stepped up. He risked his life to save those he could.” In a piece noting that Willeford had been an NRA instructor, the Daily Wire’s Ben Shapiro defended the organization from liberal criticisms. “Not a single NRA member has ever been tied to a mass shooting,” he wrote. “The NRA’s entire reason for existence is to ensure that innocent Americans can obtain weapons to defend themselves and their freedoms. But the Left’s conspiratorial view of the NRA matches their conspiratorial view of their opposition entirely: they believe that any group on the right with political power must be paying people off.”
Rush Limbaugh argued that day care may cause children to become mass shooters when they grow up.
Do you know something I’d like to know about these mass shooters? There’s a story in the Stack that I haven’t gotten a chance to get to here, but I would really love to know how many of these mass shooters went to day care? How many of them were separated from their mothers at age two, at age three, and were farmed out to day care centers?
There’s a story here from PJ Media: “Liberal Author Says She’s Being Blackballed for Warning about Dangers of Early Day Care — Erica Komisar describes herself as a political liberal. But, when it came to getting her book Being There: Why Prioritizing Motherhood in the First Three Years Matters published, let alone publicized, she was roundly rejected by liberal media outlets. Why? Because the social worker and psychoanalyst chose to stand with fact instead of political fiction in the ongoing mommy wars.
[...] This stuff, it all made me wonder just how many of these mentally disabled people or people with mental disorders, how many of them actually have been farmed out to, I don’t care who runs it, day care, state-run or not, during the early formative years. Family’s family for a reason. But the left has come along because the political necessities of feminism by design require women to abandon everything traditional about motherhood. Hell, even giving birth is now considered a sickness. A pregnancy is a sickness. It’s a societally imposed penalty. It’s just absurd.
In other news:
Conservatives took aim at communism on the 100th anniversary of Russia’s October Revolution. The Federalist’s Robert Tracinski wrote a piece titled “Why Won’t the Nightmare Dream Of Communism Die?” “If Communism represents the full implementation of a commonly accepted view of morality, we can understand the compulsion to make excuses for it, to claim it’s never really been tried, to forget its disasters and atrocities, to allow only a gauzy airbrushed version of its history, and to desperately wish that if we just tried it one more time and really did it right, we would finally reach the promised paradise,” he wrote. “We’ve done that for a full century, and even longer. After all, Communism was tried on a small scale, in voluntary utopian communities, for more than a century before it failed upward and took over entire countries.”
The Daily Wire’s video series, The Michael Knowles Show, devoted its opening segment to criticizing defenders of communism and the Washington Post’s Anne Applebaum, a former Slate columnist who wrote a piece warning about the rise of neo-Bolsheviks including, according to her, Donald Trump.
Vladimir Lenin is said to have called communist sympathizers in America “useful idiots”. The phrase refers to people like New York Times reporter Lincoln Steffens, who traveled to the Soviet Union shortly after the revolution and claimed “I have seen the future, and it works.” Or New York Times reporter Walter Duranty—I’m seeing a trend here—who won the Pulitzer Prize for publishing Stalin’s propaganda denying the Holodomor that starved to death seven and a half million people. Or Anne Applebaum, the Pulitzer Prize winning journalist who penned today’s insipid twaddle in the Washington Post. All allegedly expert thought leaders on a subject about which they wrote in such ignorance.