Skip to comments.Guns and the barometer of discontent
Posted on 04/22/2009 6:12:55 AM PDT by marktwain
You see it when tens of thousands of citizens turn out to protest in Tea Parties across the U.S.; you see it in military personnel compelled to form Oath Keepers, outlining orders they will not obey; you see it in a number of states debating sovereignty resolutions, in some cases even calling for secession; you see it in the number of people joining gun rights organizations; and yes, you see it in the number of people buying guns.
Simultaneously, just as during the Clinton administration, malcontents have increasingly inflicted mass homicides on the American people. Is it part of the same unrest? If so, what causes it? The economy? Hatred for the Obama administration? Right wing talk hosts? Or something more fundamental and pervasive?
GUN SALES BOOMING
Despite a foundering economy, untold media sources have documented the boom in sales of guns and ammunition since November. According to Time Magazine:
Data from the FBI's National Instant Criminal Background Check System, which the industry uses as a proxy for overall firearms sales, are also revealing. From November 2008 through March 2009, FBI background checks, which are required every time a federally licensed gun dealer makes a sale, rose 29.3% over the same period a year earlier. In November alone, checks jumped 42%, to 1,529,635, the largest monthly total in the decade that the system has been in place.
Similarly, states are reporting increased applications for concealed handgun permits. Florida recently reported being buried under a backlog of 95,000 applications, for which it hired 61 temporary workers.
Ammunition is so scarce that Internet rumors conjure conspiracy theories of Obama administration restrictions on ammunition imports, and a recent Department of Defense decision to crush once-fired cartridge casings rather than re-selling them to commercial ammunition reloaders caused such a huge outcry that the decision was quickly rescinded.
At gun shows, potential buyers form hours-long lines to get in, only to pay inflated prices for ammunition and semi-automatic firearms they assume the Obama administration will eventually ban. Noted one merchant at a recent show: You know, you can pretty much tell that some of the people buying guns here today cant afford it.
ITS THE ECONOMY, STUPID OR IS IT?
According to Time, the economy is largely to blame: Americans are afraid of this economy. As a result, they're getting locked and loaded, declares the magazine.
The perspective was echoed by the St. Petersburg Herald:
Once the economy gets bad, crime always goes up, said Bronson, a certified police officer. People get desperate whenever things are not going the way they feel like they should be going, and they'll do things they normally wouldn't do.
Really? Then why are people joining gun rights organizations, with no immediate economic or personal benefit? As leader of a gun rights group, I watched as, on election night, new memberships started pouring in through our web site. At gun shows, we sign up new members and volunteers at unprecedented rates. However, poor they may be when it comes to eating out and buying new clothes, they unhesitatingly drop several hundred dollars for upgraded memberships in Second Amendment organizations.
JUST OBAMA? NOT EXACTLY
Barack Obamas photo with the caption Gun Salesman of the Year adorns every gun show. As early as November 11 just a week after the election CNN reported:
According to FBI figures for the week of November 3 to 9, the bureau received more than 374,000 requests for background checks on gun purchasers -- a nearly 49 percent increase over the same period in 2007.
But attributing booming gun sales to Obama fails to explain the full phenomenon. If gun owners considered Obama such a threat, why did so many vote for him? As Ive note previously, when my organization did 26,000 phone calls noting the dangers of Obama to unaffiliated gun-owning voters, many called back to tell me I was wrong.
Why did the Oath Keepers form during the Bush administration? And why, when CNNs Susan Roesgen harassed Chicago Tea Party protestors, did one of them so aptly summarize their reasons for being there as:
This is not about Republicans or Democrats: This is about the government stealing our money.
As much as Obama may have compounded the problem, it predates him.
WHAT ABOUT THE INCREASE IN MASS HOMICIDES?
By now, youve probably heard of Richard Poplawski, the malcontent who murdered three police officers in Pittsburgh. According to the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, Mr. Poplawski, who told friends that he was afraid the government was going to take his guns and that police could not protect citizens during the economic downturn.
In Binghamton, unemployed 42-year-old Vietnamese immigrant Jiverly Voong, complaining that he could not find work and that his unemployment checks were only $200 a week, barricaded the American Civic Association and killed thirteen.
Criminologist James Allen Fox of Northeastern University posits that between 1976 and 2007, mass murders tracked unemployment rates. Clearly, what motivates malcontents to mayhem is often the same pressure facing us all. Adaptive individuals respond with a ballot; sociopaths, with a bullet.
But most of the murderers have not been unemployed, nor have they been vocally anti-government: Neither Obama nor the economy can fully explain the phenomenon.
PRESSURE FALLING RAPIDLY
What do organized protests, burgeoning gun sales and sociopathic violence have in common? They are measures of fundamental discontent.
Americans are fed up:
Theyre fed up with their hard-earned money funding government bailouts while corporate executives feel free to rape, pillage and plunder; theyre fed up with illegal aliens stealing the few jobs that arent off-shored to Mumbai; theyre fed up with being blamed for corruption and violence in Mexico
Americans are fed up with having government tell them what guns they may or may not own; theyre fed up with grandmothers getting strip-searched in airports to avoid offending the sensibility of Islamists; and theyre fed up with media elitists making the news instead of reporting it
Americans are fed up with the fast march to socialism embraced by the current administration, and they are fed up with the abridgment of their freedoms.
In the 1990s, conservatives riled against the liberalism of the Clinton administration; the first decade of the 21st Century was characterized by liberals chanting Bush lied, people died.
But the coming decade will be different: Beyond political activists at one end of the spectrum or the other, middle Americans are becoming increasingly disenfranchised. Adding fuel to the fire, along comes our friendly federal government with a report charmingly entitled Rightwing Extremism: Current Economic and Political Climate Fueling Resurgence in Radicalization and Recruitment.
And who exactly is guilty of what the report calls rightwing extremist hostility? Conservatives, of course, but also gun control opponents, illegal immigration opponents, and best of all, disgruntled war veterans.
[The Department of Homeland Security] assesses that the combination of environmental factors that echo the 1990s, including heightened interest in legislation for tighter firearms restrictions and returning military veterans, as well as several new trends, including an uncertain economy and a perceived rising influence of other countries, may be invigorating rightwing extremist activity, specifically the white supremacist and militia movements. To the extent that these factors persist, rightwing extremism is likely to grow in strength.
Neatly confirming what the American right has long believed of Obama that he regards his own people with greater distrust than Islamists the report stands to feed a disenfranchisement loop wherein the federal government distrusts citizens, feeding still more distrust of government until.
As a professional pilot, let me relay to you what I get in my weather reports. It refers to barometric pressure and its relationship to weather: Pressure falling rapidly. I dont know when the storm will pass, but my personal advice is:
Head for the cellar.
Very well written. Thanks for posting it!
Correct statement, but do you want to see what will be the trigger event, it is already happening. And it will not be the Right pulling the trigger.
Look at this map of job loss/gain 2007-2009)
Send a copy of this to each member of Congress and the pathetic usurpers in the Administration. Their quest for power coupled with their arrogance has rendered them clueless. They’ve become corrupt and blinded by their Elitism. Their disregard for American history and their failure to live up to the oath they took to protect and defend our Constitution has compromised the American people and left us vulnerable to our foreign enemies. God knows, we have enough domestic enemies at every level of government in this country.
Sorry, link error.
This should work.
ALSO, send a check to Simcox in Arizona who is running against John McCain in the Republican Primary, and a check to Toomey, who is running against Arlen Spector in PA.
MAKE A COPY of the check and mail it to the RNC, McCain and Spector.
I take it you’re a resident of the Republic of Texas?
It looks like Texas is the only consistent job GROWTH state on that map.
You are right on both counts.
I plead guilty to being a native Texan (some of my relatives were here during the Republic of Texas, but most of them came here during Reconstruction after the last Civil War.)
And yes, Gov. “Rick” stated this week at a Tea Party that 70% of the job growth in the last 12 months in the U.S. was here in Texas.
That said, in the U.S. in the last 12 months, the job growth to loss swing was 8,000,000 jobs. Very frightening data.
It doesn’t matter if every American has a gun and box of ammo if they don’t have the will to use them.
Map is a nice find. Good data!!
Your point cannot be emphasized enough, if and/or when the rubber ever meets the proverbial road.
Our founders gave all to bring about this country. I don’t think many would stand up like that now.
Maybe a lot will find the will one day.
Disenfranchised and disrespected. From my feeble mind, here is what I see going on. The new govt is spending way too much money that our grandkids will be burdend with. And it’s all make work junk. Won’t stimilate anything except our tax burden. Our president is getting in our face with “We won”. The message to us is sit down and shut up. Deal with it. They are looking to disarm American citizens at a time when crime is going up due to a downturn in the economy. There is a good chance that Mexico is going to spiral out of control, and the govt is labeling US as potential terrorists. Obama is sucking up to Chavez who is sucking up to Iran. We see all these things going on and we wonder, what country am I living in. It appears that the Constitution is endangered by people we elected to run the country. Our elected govt is pushing our economy to a state run institution and there are a lot of us that know they can’t run anything effectivly. Freddie and Fannie are great examples. This new govt is targeting American citizens who do not agree with them. Never before can I remember a political party in charge target the people who make the country work. We do our jobs, pay our taxes, stay out of trouble and try to make this country better off for our kids futures. But now, we have a govt that is working to destroy everything that makes this country great and replace it with policies and practices that have failed every time they have been tried. We are tired of being targeted and insulted. The tea parties were an initial steam release. I do not expect this govt to back off.
By the same token, it won't do them much good to have the will if they don't have the gun, and a case of ammunition. But we'll not really know about that will until and if the time ever comes.
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