January 11, 2010

Gun nuts vs. Indians

Charles Trimble:  Frontier mentality continues with guns[T]he most frightful and dangerous market is represented by paranoid yahoos who see enemies around every corner and behind every tree. These are people who are driven by fear--mostly fear of minorities whose rights they have trampled over the years, and fear of their own government’s every action to secure human and civil rights and opportunity for those minorities.

In the original American colonies and later the ever-expanding frontier, hunting was important to survival; but it was fear of Indians mostly that there was at least one blunderbuss in every home. And this persisted down through the years. Even as late as 1973 when the American Indian Movement occupied the village of Wounded Knee, many whites in a wide area surrounding Pine Ridge and other reservations drove around in their pickup trucks displaying racks of weaponry in the rear windows. Although it has always been in manly vogue to carry hunting rifles in the pickups, some of these were assault rifles that wouldn’t have left enough carcass for much of a venison dinner.

In frontier of the late 1830s there was great danger along the Oregon Trail and other routes westward. At demarcation points from Kansas City north to Omaha, booklets were being sold to the emigrants preparing for the trek; warning of Indian raids and giving advice on protecting against them; and, of course, selling guns to them. Gun sales boomed.

History tells, however, that Indians were no great threat if the pioneers would behave and stick to their routes.
And:Fresh shallow graves could be found all along the trail, as death was ever present. But most deaths came from drowning at river crossings, from wagon accidents, snakebites, and the dreaded Cholera that resulted from drinking the human and animal-fouled water. The biggest killer, however, was firearm accidents, those very same weapons sold to the immigrants to protect them from marauding Indians.

The same scare tactics used back then to sell weapons are being used today, much for the same purpose. Reports tell of a new arms mania, with gun shows overflowing, gun factories going flat out in production, and annual sales of guns in the U.S. reaching over $3 billion. Reportedly, Smith and Wesson stocks are up 115%, and Sturm/Ruger stocks are up 85%. Cabela’s arms sales are up 70%.

The following opening sentence of one report, however, causes me the greatest concern: “Barack Obama’s victory in November sent weapons sales shooting upward.” That report noted a major factor being fear that the new President would outlaw all guns. I would hate to guess what the other factors might be.
But Trimble guesses anyway:At least publicly, none dare mention Obama’s race in their attacks on him, but there can be little doubt that it is a prime factor among many of those critics.Comment:  Good guess. In the olden days, fear of Indians motivated gun sales. Now it's fear of other minorities--especially blacks, Latinos, and Muslims. Grab your guns because "they" are coming to get "us." First "death panels," then death camps, and finally a Communist/Nazi/fascist/Muslim dictatorship!

For more on guns, see A Well Regulated Militia... and Some Arguments for Gun Control. For more on conservative thinking, see Right-Wingers Foment Hate and Hate Abounds in "Post-Racial" America.

Below:  American "heroes"...

...and "villains."


dmarks said...

Is the New Yorker really a conservative publication?

dmarks said...

And the right to keep and bear arms is not just for white conservatives. Any any student of that rather important amendment in the Bill of Rights. the Second, knows.

Stephen said...

Oh great anybody buying a guy is automatically a racist just like how American violence is a 'white problem' right Rob? *Clicks sarcasm off.* In case you haven't noticed ring wing idiots also used the bush administration to fuel fear; just look at alex jones' nonsense and how militia nuts freaked out about the Bush administration. Let's examine one of your links shall we?


"Our culture tells us a hundred times a day that white and Christian is the norm and anything else is "different." From the white faces on TV to "In God We Trust" on coins, the message is that America is a white Christian country and anyone who doesn't like it can lump it."

What about the Black faces, Asian faces on tv and so on? You're employing pathetic cherry picking methods and the 'in God we trust' coin slogan is not a big deal; the concept of God is not exclusive to Christianity.

"Finally, Bob Herbert notes how Americans act upon our racial and religious differences: not with rational debate but with irrational violence."

In what alternate universe is that? Even the worst parts of our recent history look like child's play compared to what goes in other countries; compare the civil rights era to the Balkan wars for example.

Have modern American racists even close to matching the sheer hatred seen in third world nations? Of course not. The idea that America is a uniquely intolerant country is an inaccurate and bigoted lie which of course you believe, it reminds me of attempts to paint Blacks as being inclined to criminal behavior. Second of all Von Brunn is anti-Bush, against the Iraq war and hates neocons so your post is a tad inaccurate.

dmarks said...

Yes, there is nothing to the claim of "fear of minorities". And the gun buyers often do buy guns to protect themselves from their rights being trampled on.

When Trimble says "These are people who are driven by fear--mostly fear of minorities whose rights they have trampled over the years", he is airing a huge whopper that is so ludicrous.

Can he name even ONE instance of a gun owner buying a gun to protect himself or herself from a "minority" that this gun owner trampled on the rights of?

Expression of basic 2nd amendment rights knows no color. See this: see this

"In the olden days, fear of Indians motivated gun sales."

And yet, Indians themselves needed their guns too.