The elephant in the room.

Nikolas Cruz, accused of murdering 17 people in the Florida high school shooting, appears in court for a status hearing in Fort Lauderdale, Fla. (Mike Stocker/South Florida Sun-Sentinel via AP, Pool, File)

Listen To You Tell Me Texas Friday 3/9/18


In the wake of the Parkland, Florida school massacre that left 17 people dead, almost all of the arguments being advanced by anti-gun advocates are completely wrong. Those arguments are wrong for the simple reason that they spring from premises that are completely false.

Anti-gun advocates start from the premise that if all civilian-owned firearms were to be somehow magically confiscated – an absolutely impossible task – society would become free of violence. Nothing in the blood-soaked pages of human history supports this premise.

Guns – often the tools of violence – aren’t the source of violence. Violent people are the source of violence. If somehow there were no guns, those violent people would resort to knives, baseball bats, tire irons, fertilizer bombs, trucks, cars and Lord knows what else to commit murder.

Guns aren’t the problem. FBI crime statistics make clear that the communities with the highest rates of legal gun ownership have the lowest rates of gun violence. Chicago, on the other hand, with some of the most restrictive gun laws in the country, leads the Western world in gun violence.

Anti-gun advocates have an almost religious belief in gun-free zones. Yet we too often are reminded that gun-free zones are among the most dangerous places on the planet. It is illegal to walk into a federal building with a firearm. It is illegal to walk into most public schools with a firearm. Yet federal buildings aren’t getting shot up while schools are.

That’s because “gun-free” federal buildings aren’t gun-free at all. They’re brimming with armed guards. But most schools are loudly, proudly and self-righteously gun-free. The message to a deranged individual couldn’t be more clear:

Come here and you will face no meaningful opposition in your quest to commit violence and mayhem.

Murdering crackpots who want to attack government buildings resort to other means. In 1995, Timothy McVeigh understood that he had little chance of doing any serious damage to the federal building in Oklahoma City using a gun. So he created a bomb using a rented truck and readily available agricultural fertilizer.

Do we thus need “truck control” legislation?

No matter how much we would wish it to be so, there is no legislation that will bring about the end of violence. Gun laws or not, existing law regarding opening fire in a school building could not be more clear. Yet Nikolas Cruz walked into Stoneman Douglas High School and killed 17 people anyway. Had there been some law on the books concerning the weapon he used, would such a law have stopped him? No reasonable person can make that case.

There’s an elephant in the room that everyone seems intent on ignoring and he has nothing to do with a lack of proper gun legislation. The elephant in the room is that a generation ago we didn’t have school shootings and now we have them with depressing frequency.

This elephant is a particularly large one. Leave him unattended to for too long and he will eventually crush us.

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Paul Gleiser

Paul L. Gleiser is president of ATW Media, LLC, licensee of radio stations KTBB 97.5 FM/AM600, 92.1 The TEAM FM in Tyler-Longview, Texas.

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5 Responses

  1. Richard Anderson says:

    Gun Control…It’s NOT About Guns…It’s About CONTROL. And THAT puts ALL Americans who cherish LIBERTY in peril as our Founders who were so wise knew. Thus they wrote The Second Amendment down, for all time, into The Constitution of The United States, to protect our citizens from tyranny, should that ever occur.
    The NRA is a champion of FREEDOM embodied in our Bill of Rights and I support their important good faith work in being a guardian of our Constitutional Republic and individual LIBERTY.

    The elephant in the room, in my humble opinion, is America must return to its Christian roots, by inviting God back into the public square, for His book, the Bible, is the foundation cornerstone of everything that is good, that is moral, that is righteous written down to guide us. No one can ever go wrong by embracing The Good News of The Good Book as the late Rev. Billy Graham and the late Pope John Paul II both knew.

    For I believe, JESUS CHRIST IS THE ANSWER, to the societal problems we now face.

  2. Mike Gauthier says:

    You sir, are correct in saying we have a very bloody history. If we go back far enough we will see that Cain slew Abel with a rock (some claim it was a spear). if only they had dismantled the NRA (National Rock Association), then Abel might have lived much longer.

  3. C M Solomon says:

    Paul, I hate to disagree with your choice of animal even though your metaphorical idiom fits the issue at hand. I know of several jackasses (a better fit and Democrat symbol) that would bite your hand off or chase you up a tree that would wreak havoc on any attempt to get along in order to do the right thing. The jackass Democrat reasoning to attack guns instead of violence perpetrated by evil persons is a DE FACTO tolerance of that evil since the evil itself is not condemned as the source of the problem. Furthermore, the lack of law enforcement and certain punishment is not practiced by Democrat infested jurisdictions (as you have identified). The true source of the problem is obvious. The newly minted Leftist Democrats don’t want to effectively address this juicy issue that they can continue to exploit for their political goals. Remember the quote by Rahm Emanuel (from Chicago) that said: “You don’t ever want a crisis to go to waste”, hence, their demand to BAN ALL GUNS. Translation: ignore the murder statistics and remove the right of self defense from the law abiding citizen and declare the Constitution and the 2nd Amendment dead.

  4. R. Eagleman says:

    There is not much I can add to the eloquent replies by Anderson, Gauthier, and Solomon. Therefore, let me offer one possible explanation for the presence of the elephant in the room. In my former life, I witnessed the administration of shock treatment for mental disorders, which probably was a major factor in the disbanding of many mental institutions due to being inhumane. Over time, these patients were “humanely”released into the general population with medications to control their behavior. A commendable idea in theory, but like so many of the failed social experiments, it only has a chance to succeed if the medications are actually taken. With no supervision, many of these individuals do not self-medicate, and represent a significant part of the elephant to which Paul reminds us did not exist a few generations ago. People with certain mental conditions should be in hospitals, which would not only help protect the public, but also help protect them from themselves. We have no idea how many are now part of our society, but from the number of insanity pleadings in criminal defense cases, there are too many. Since these individuals are more susceptible to acting on the violent stimuli of our current entertainment industry, it is only logical to at least consider this as a major contributing factor. How we put the toothpaste back in the tube will be a challenge for which I do not have a clue.

  5. Militia Man says:

    All by design. Need to ban guns? Make conditions ripe for mass slaughter, the “crisis” needed to achieve the leftist agenda.

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