Recently, our good friend Jeff Knox of the Firearms Coalition penned an opinion piece on the Nice “assault truck” terror attack. His piece drew several satirical parallels to the tendency of the anti-rights zealots to immediately politicize every horrendous attack with calls to advance their citizen disarmament agenda, no matter how tenuous the connection to the reality of the event. We sent his article to our Alerts list of about fifteen thousand subscribers, to largely positive feedback. However, there were a few negative responses. “How could you be so insensitive?” some asked. “In times like these, we should remain silent, and respect the grief of the victims’ families,” others added. Still others mentioned that we should not attempt to politicize a tragedy, no matter what our opponents do. After all, we’re the good guys, right?
Is it to these folks that I address this missive. Allow me to digress for a moment …
As a NRA certified firearms instructor of some years, one of the things we try to convey to our students is “situational awareness”. If you’ve ever taken firearms training, odds are fair you may have come across something known as the “Tueller Drill”. In a nutshell, anyone interested in being able to defend themselves must learn how to determine how close is “too close”. During the development of the “Tueller drill”, it was determined that a bad guy armed with a knife or other contact weapon could cover a distance of 7 yards (21 feet) from a standing start in about 1.5 seconds, or about the same time that a trained individual could draw his holstered firearm and put two rounds on target. In short, a bad guy with a knife standing 21 feet or less away is “too close”.
What does that have to do with Nice and the politics of tragedy, you may ask? A fair question. The answer is that, much like in the “Tueller drill” scenario above, our opponents are already “too close”. The time to be “sensitive”, to be “silent and respectful”, to not “politicize tragedy”, has passed. The opposition will give us no such consideration. The fight is on, ladies and gentlemen. The battle has well and truly begun. In case you hadn’t noticed, these people have already made proposals ranging from removing your right to bear arms because you’re on a secret government list to front page editorials in the NY Times calling for banning entire classes of guns altogether. Much like the bad guy with the knife in hand, these people mean to do you harm. If you think they’re not serious, they you are NOT paying attention. Lack of situational awareness can and will get you in deep trouble.
Now that the bad guy is “too close”, you have to make a decision, and you have to make it quickly. You can fight, or you can let him win. Those are your only options. If he was going to negotiate with you, he wouldn’t be holding a knife. Same thing with the anti-rights zealots. If they wanted to “compromise”, they wouldn’t be talking about “gun bans” and “Australian style” gun control. People who want to talk do not hold a knife to your throat in order to get you to to do so. That isn’t “negotiation”, it’s “extortion”.
So the real question is, why do those of us on the pro-rights side keep responding to these terror attacks with the same old “quiet, respectful silence”, the same old “we won’t politicize this tragedy”, the same old “we won’t point out the idiocy of the other’s side’s arguments, because we’re the good guys” answers. It’s been said that one definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting a different result each time. I submit that we need to start doing things differently if we want to see different results.
No more silence. When another one of these attacks happens, and it will, because the bad guys aren’t going away, we need to make the point loudly, clearly, and immediately, that gun control kills people. We need to boldly state, right away, that make believe “gun free zones” are just hunting grounds for terrorists and other criminals. And maybe most importantly, we need to show the opposition’s proposals for what they really are. At best, stupid, useless, feel-good but do-nothing idiocy. At worst, anti-constitutional, freedom stealing, rights restricting garbage that should get them impeached and removed from office.
Remember folks, the bad guy is in front of you, knife in hand. You must decide. Stand and fight, or hesitate and lose everything. There is no third option.
Dave Kopp, AzCDL President