Why Can’t Americans Get Real on Guns?

So now two lives have been claimed by people with hate in their hearts and deadly weapons in their hands. First it was Dr. George Tiller, and now a security guard at Washington’s US Holocaust Memorial Museum.

Holocaust MemorialMuseum

The guard’s name was Stephen T. Johns, and he didn’t have to die. America should have been able to keep a rifle out of the hands of a known racist and anti-Semite, James von Brunn. We didn’t, and this is what happened.

Von Brunn was known to law enforcement. Back in 1981, he tried to take board members of the Federal Reserve hostage by actually entering the system’s Washington headquarters. He was armed with a revolver, hunting knife, and sawed off shotgun. He did time for that one, which leads to an interesting question. If 88 year old James von Brunn had a history of drunk driving or driving erratically at his age, there would have been some effort to take his driver’s license away. So how does a man who went to prison on assault and weapons charges manage to procure a rifle, especially if his extremist views were known to authorities?

The answer lies in part in the power of the gun lobby. When they say “If you outlaw guns only outlaws will have guns”, they aren’t talking about James von Brunn. If the media does its job and asks how he got the rifle he used, the lobby will publicly wring its hands and decry the violence. At the same time, they’ll caution against blaming those law abiding citizens who have nothing better to do than blow off the head of a squirrel at 150 yards for “sport”.

Well, it’s time for a paradigm shift in that way of thinking.


It’s precisely because of those Second Amendment zealots that its easier to buy a gun in some states than it is to get a fishing license. We are reaping what we have sowed when it comes to George Tiller, Stephen Johns, or a young, innocent kid in the Bronx who gets caught in deadly crossfire.

There is no excuse for this. And by the way, don’t bet on the media asking too many questions about von Brunn’s rifle. They didn’t ask about Scott Roeder’s weapon in the Tiller case, so don’t expect anything different now. That’s how we operate here.


It’s Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell when it comes to guns. After all, it’s our sacred right to have them, whether we be racist or deranged.

white supremecist

Never mind the head scratching that goes on in the rest of the world when these events take place.

They’re wondering how America can lecture others about the need for restraint when it comes to weapons procurement when our own citizens are buying guns at a record clip.

I can’t figure it out. Can you?


5 Comments Add yours

  1. slamdunk says:

    Interesting perspective. I think the answer to your question is that guns have such a long history in the US that they are and will be forever part of the culture.

    Two additional comments:

    –Mr. Von Brunn appears to have had a long history of mental illness. It certainly could be argued that the mental health and/or correctional system failed him. If not, he would not have been wandering the streets planning murders.

    –The problem with comparing the DC shooting and gun laws to revoking drivers licenses is that lots of people drive without a valid DL. The laws are simply to punish them after they get caught. As such, there are lots of armed felons who are not supposed to have firearms.

    DC has some of the strictest gun laws in the country, but still suffers through a very high violent crime rate.

  2. Sad....so sad says:

    Unfortunately, humanity is a vile, murderous, hateful race; We kill for fun, we attack, torment and torture for fun, we degrade and enslave others of our kind and other creatures for fun and as a sign of dominance and we think we’re better than anything and everything in the cosmos…And anything that is better than us, we demonize and bastardize them to boost our egos.

    With America, unfortunately, because ‘carrying guns’ is in the constitution, there are so many gun owners that will never part with their precious ‘wands of death’ that it’s allmost imposible to make it illegal, and the innocents will get hurt or killed by some dickhead who’s excuse was “I lost my temper for a fraction of a second…it wont happen again, I promise!”

    Racism is a revolting thing. NOBODY is better than anyone else.

    I fucking HATE racism!

  3. Robert Cameron says:

    The right to bear arms has been pushed to absurd lengths by lobbying of the NRA and other powerful groups who claim owning military level weapons is a right. How insane can anyone be? Columbine, Virginia Tech, and hundreds of other tragedies, including yesterday’s, did not have to happen. Automatic and semi-automatic weapons are not used by hunters (I hope) and have no place in the hands of the genral public.

  4. p of v says:

    I had to give myself a timeout before I could write about this tragedy, I was so furious. I never heard of Stephen Johns before yesterday, but I wept for him.
    Nothing infuriates me more than racism.
    And if I read one more idiotic post that talks about gun-control in D.C., I’m going to lose it. What the hell does it matter if you can’t buy a gun in D.C. if you can take twenty steps past city limits in any direction and purchase an arsenal?

  5. sanda says:

    I am opposed to people owning guns.

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