Obama on Gun Control

*Posted by Joe Wooddell

In answering a question about gun legislation at his press conference January 14, 2013, Barack Obama stated, “If there’s a step we can take that will save even one child from what happened in Newtown then we should take that step.” Does he really mean this? I hope not.

Relatively few children are killed each year due to gun violence (not that every single one isn’t precious and important). Many more children (and adults) are killed in auto accidents each year. Every single day over the past ten years someone has died driving on Texas roads. Why not just outlaw cars? In fact, this would technically be more constitutional than what many are proposing in terms of gun control! It would save lives in terms of simple accidents, drunk driving, and pollution. It’s “a step we can take that will save . . . one child,” so why not do it? Because it’s absurd, that’s why.

I can think of lots of ways to “save even one child from what happened in Newtown.” We could build bulletproof tunnels from each person’s home to the neighborhood schools. If schools are not close enough to our homes, then we could just build more schools. If we don’t have the money to build more schools, we could just print and borrow more money. In fact, we could force our teachers to go nowhere else except to home and school, and their little tunnels would be the only way to get there. Of course, teachers couldn’t be married, because their spouse might get out of the tunnel and purchase a gun and bring it home, and the teacher might pack it to school for some reason. That’s okay. We would only hire single teachers, and fire them if they get married.

You don’t like the bulletproof tunnel, unmarried-teachers-only idea? Here’s another way to “save even one child from what happened in Newtown”: We could outlaw guns altogether. Of course, we’d have to have armed policemen (preferably federal policemen – some new national police force – since local police might have local ideas about politics, etc., which would not do at all) standing guard at every entrance of every school, along with metal detectors for every teacher, administrator, janitor, and student to go through. Why would we need this if guns were outlawed altogether? Because then all the law-abiding citizens would be gun-less, and only the criminals would have them. But wait, even a sufficiently brainwashed federal policeman might go nuts one day and start shooting up the school, or – God forbid – start using his power to take kids into back rooms and molest them. (I guess we could get rid of all the back rooms, and just have big, huge auditoriums sectioned off by strips of tape on the floor, where each class gathers, and where each administrator, janitor, or cook stores his or her wares.) No, never mind, that wouldn’t be necessary; I forgot: people are inherently good, and if just given the right education, training, indoctrination, and placed in the right environment all will be well.

Don’t like it? Okay, how about this: have every kid wear little kid-sized body armor. They could get sized up each year on the first day of school. The body armor could include little full-faced helmets with speakers and microphones inside. That way they could still communicate with teachers, etc.

On second thought, that reminds me: we could just put video cameras and monitors in every single home and just do school from home. Teachers could log in at their own homes, and stream live to kids in their homes. The parents could all be at work, and we could require that they lock their kids in a childproof room (complete with a toilet and drinking fountain), which has cameras in every corner, and no windows. We could pay for all the technology with the money we’d save from not having to have school busses. It would be great. There could be armed, federal policemen walking about in each neighborhood just in case the kid has a seizure or something; and again, the locked rooms would be bulletproof. Only the parents and policemen would have keys to the room. On second thought, only the policemen would have keys, since someone might murder the kid’s parent on the way home and steal his or her keys and then pose as the parent. So we could have a federal officer at every home checking identification.

Any of these wonderful ideas would “save even one child from what happened in Newtown.”

Seriously, what should we do? Answer: develop virtuous people. We should have serious discussion and debate about the objectivity of truth, goodness, and beauty, and help ourselves and others develop into virtuous people. We should respect the Constitution, teach children and adults about firearms, make it easy for law-abiding citizens to own them, and punish criminals consistently according to the Rule of Law. Believers, of course, should do all this prayerfully and with Scripture in mind.

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15 Responses to Obama on Gun Control

  1. Thank you, Joe, for making clear the absurdity of liberal’s knee-jerk reaction to a national tragedy by taking guns away from law-abiding citizens. Your post was funny and sad at the same time.

  2. Pat says:

    Obama/Imanuel rule of thumb, “Never let a crisis go to waste.” If you want to disarm the populace, just tap into the death of 22 kids. I agree with your last paragraph. Although, I think that we need to have a some responsible people who are trained to handle a gun in every school (not going into the details of who and how many), at least until we have developed the people mentioned in the last paragrah. I’m sorry to say, it may not be soon.

  3. grampawoody says:

    Well, let’s see now…don’t be too sure anyone died in the Connecticut incident. Remember the old saying, “Don’t believe anything you hear and only half of what you see.” I won’t go into details about this; as it would cover too much ground and has been discussed at length on various sites on the internet. And, in that regard also, weigh the figures. However, conditioning, indoctrination, lies, deception, platitudes, we’re looking out for you, etc. are part and parcel of politics. The sad fact of life in America is that we have undergone a sustained conditioning process since the industrial revolution (and some of you may know how far back that goes). Up until the age of computers in every home, before cable and satelite TV, before national public radio, before the beatnik era, there was some modicum of common sense in the American public. We were still reasonably patriotic and largely committed to the notion that God had his hand in everything. But once McCarthy was beseiged into oblivion and the anti-establishment mentality garnered strength and the Great Society was established and kids ran away from home by the thousands and atheism ran rampant, the making of a new world order became a viable reality.

    Countries around the world were falling prey to communism. Others didn’t want the connotation associated with them; so the concept was modified so that society could slowly become adapted to the idea. There is no need to document how everything was put into motion since books by the hundreds give that information. There was one fly in the ointment; and Japan was well aware of this during World War II. That is why they never considered a land invasion. America was an armed society. This is the very problem that thwarts the one worlders in their attempt to consolidate the mass of humanity into servitude to the man gods of the elite class. And, believe me, there is an elite class.

    The problem started when the elite class lost control of the servant class because the servants ran to America and formed their own elite. When the industrial revolution got into full gear, another class formed – the middle class. The middle class had a lot of clout albeit through unionization (whether controlled by the mafia or communists), money to spend (wisely or foolishly) and the power of the vote. They also had guns and understood the true meaning of the second amendment. They were constitutionalists and believed the Bill of Rights. Now we are old and dying off and the young have been conditioned to serve the state rather than the other way around. It is an imperative that before a new world order can succeed, the American public must be disarmed at any cost and under any pretense no matter the collateral damage.

    Law abiding citizens are the single biggest threat to a dictatorship. Law abiding citizens pay the bills that support the world. When those citizens realize the futility of their efforts they have but two options. As in Russia during communism alcohol and poor production or attempted escape prevailed since there were no means of resistance. This could be the fate of America were it not for the second option. And that is why it is so necessary for the elite to remove the only obstacle standing in their way. It will not be pretty. It is only the most faith hardened, God fearing believers who have any assurance of certainty; as many will fall away.

    • jdwooddell says:

      Thanks for commenting. I cannot confirm or deny anything you’re saying, in terms of factual claims. But I aim to continue working both legally/politically and spiritually toward everything good, true, and beautiful. My calling is to be faithful to my Lord, and to continue using my freedom to point people to Him. They are coming, one by one, from every tribe, tongue, people, and nation. I have hope, and hope does not disappoint. Yes I’m a premillennialist, which (in part) means I know things will worsten hellishly over time, but pockets of revival and renewal will happen. In the end, however, I am seeking a country not made by human hands, whose Architect and Builder is God. I’ll make this place the best it can be till then, and take as many with me as possible to the new place. I will not allow the enemy to distract or discourage me. I have limited time, so I can only read so much, so I’ll work on what He’s called me to do. Again, thanks so much for reading and commenting.

  4. Will says:

    Uh, . . . okay? A politician said something more for its rhetorical value than its literal meaning. Shocking! I’m more terrified by the absurd overreaction than the modest proposals actually put forward. The shrill, frantic tone of these irrational responses to every word out of Obama’s mouth is seriously putting me off conservativism and evangelicalism. . .

    • jdwooddell says:

      Thank you for reading and commenting. I certainly welcome the feedback. In the words of Charlie Brown after he thanked Violet for sending him a Christmas card (which she didn’t send), “Don’t you know sarcasm [or satire] when you hear it?!” I guess John Stuart, Steven Colbert, Jay Leno, David Letterman, Saturday Night Live, and the Left are the only ones allowed to use this genre. Yet another double standard.

      • Will says:

        Satire is often an effective way of making a point, but what is the point you are making? (I’m assuming, of course, that you are making a point, and that this isn’t just a long, tedious joke.) That Obama is part of an elitist conspiracy to establish a new world order that is trying to enslave us by taking away our guns? No, wait, that definitely wasn’t it. The point seems to be that Obama, hiding behind a veil of rhetoric, is proposing things that we shouldn’t be OK with. But, instead of a reasonable discussion of what those proposals are and whether they are a good idea (which is not obvious), we get a reductio ad absurdum of a sentence that was (obviously) not intended literally. This has nothing to do with genre (you can sing it in a country western song, for all I care). It’s just as trivial and disturbing as Glenn Beck alternatively screaming and crying about how liberals want our guns. Where are the voices the reason?

      • jdwooddell says:

        (Reply to Will’s Feb. 11, 1:19 p.m. comment):

        You say Obama’s notion that, “If there’s a step we can take that will save even one child from what happened in Newtown then we should take that step,” was “a sentence that was (obviously) not intended literally.” As president he does not have the luxury of making such silly statements. There are three options: (1) he did not intend it literally; if so, he shouldn’t have said it (he’s president; he’s held to a high standard); (2) he meant it in some sense, but spoke from his emotions instead of his reason, which is often dangerous (and foolish) for a president; or (3) he intended it literally (or at least more widely applied than you think), which would be scary. I’m in no position to judge his motives. I can’t think of another option. In any case it was foolish and/or dangerous. You imply we should expect such nonsense from “politicians.” Perhaps part of the reason they act (and speak) so foolishly is that so many people expect them to and don’t hold them accontable. You want me to give reasonable discussion of his proposals and tell whether they’re a good idea, but that’s not the point of my post. If one of our contributors wants to do that, or if someone wants to do so on another blog, great. I’m simply reminding readers how nonsensical it is to say, “if there’s a step we can take that will save even one child . . . then we should take that step.”

      • Will says:

        You hold the president to an impossible standard. As linguists and philosophers of language will tell you, what is literally said and what is communicated are often two (very) different things. What any reasonable person (who wasn’t looking for an opportunity to ridicule) would understand Obama to have said, and what he himself would have taken himself to have communicated, has none of the absurd implications of his statement taken strictly literally. Rhetorically, it is quite effective–it is difficult to object to preventing the death of children. Of course, it is not a good argument (it’s not an argument at all), and if he was trying for a good argument, then he failed. But, he wasn’t trying for a good argument. He is trying to pass a piece of legislation, which (in the world we live in, not in the utopian world of virtue) means rhetorically powerful, non-rational appeals to the public (most of whom couldn’t recognize a good argument), and backroom deal-making with politicians and lobbyists. Is this lamentable? Sure, but so is taking what someone said while speaking extemporaneously and willfully interpreting it more literally than reasonable in order to disparage the speaker. Where is the virtue in that? Recognizing is not consent. We need not approve how politicians work in order to understand, and therefore how to interpret what they say. I expect this kind of nonsense from politicians, because it is the only thing one can reliably expect. However, I expect more from evangelical and conservative leaders so I am discouraged and disheartened by the steady stream of malicious, hateful, absurd, and blatantly false accusations from supposedly virtuous leaders, all playing to the fears and prejudices of their audience. This kind of post is not virtuous or helpful–it does not offer a reasoned analysis of a topic of importance or a careful critique some position–it only feeds the irrational hatred of Obama. If this is the new culture of conservativism, then I don’t want any part in it.

      • jdwooddell says:

        (To Will’s Feb. 11, 5:04 p.m. comment):

        I simply disagree with much of what you say. I don’t think it’s an impossible standard. I do think the public can understand and appreciate a good argument, although you are correct that many people give in merely to powerful rhetoric. There’s nothing wrong with powerful rhetoric if it includes truth. Lots of politicians have rightly used both. Even Jesus (although I’m not calling Him a politician) used both! Also, I don’t know how literally Obama intended his statement to be taken; that’s not the point for me. Rather, he is held to a high standard, and should be accountable for what he says, and what he said was both foolish and potentially very dangerous (as my article shows). I would bet a lot of people unthinkingly actually agree with his statement, although they foolishly haven’t thought through what it means or where it could lead. My article attempts to show the absurdity of where it could lead. If there are vicious politicians and a public unappreciative of good arguments, I refuse to leave it that way. I aim to remedy both, in ways I think appropriate. I appreciate your input, but I think we just disagree.

  5. Pat says:

    Will,
    Maybe Joe should have just said, “seems pretty hypocritical to me.” Don’t you find it rather absurd that Obama condones the murder (and pushes for even more of it) of over 55,000 children, but he says he will do whatever it takes to save just one child. Why doesn’t President Obama make that statement when it comes to de-funding government dollars for Planned Parenthood? Maybe the President thought simplicity would be the best way to catch a public’s attention to an agenda that he has, because I believe this President thinks most of America is stupid. Therefore, I found this particular blog in the form of satire by showing how ridiculous Obama’s statement was a rather well stated piece of rhetoric.

    What conservatives and, more importantly, Christians have to watch for with this President’s statements are the “real truth” behind his words. Read some of the other blogs over the past year for more details in this area. This is not a “new” culture of conservatism, in fact, this is the culture that was in effect when this country was founded. This is Americans defending our inalienable rights that were granted to us under God and in the constitution, amendments and Bill of Rights.

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