Guns, guns, everywhere there are reminders of guns


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Preacherman
May 16, 2003, 11:22 AM
From the Morning Call (http://www.mcall.com/news/columnists/all-5guns-4may16,0,6826197.column?coll=all%2Dnews%2Dcol):

May 16, 2003

Paul Carpenter

With gun control, America could be more like Mexico

Guns, guns, everywhere there are reminders of guns.

One highlight of the vacation I just completed was a visit to Tombstone, Ariz., where most of the main drag's architecture is stuck in 1881. It was great fun to relive the Old West, although a re-enactment of the gunfight at the OK Corral represented the most inept theater I have ever seen.

Later, I visited the Alamo in Texas, where Davy Crockett and others delayed the forces of Mexican tyrant Santa Anna long enough for other Texan rebels to organize a successful campaign of independence.

Between Tombstone and the Alamo, I fulfilled an ambition I have had for decades, since I first saw ''The Life and Times of Judge Roy Bean,'' which, as I have often noted, is the best movie ever made.

Langtry, Texas, is the site of the Jersey Lilly, the combination courthouse-saloon of the legendary frontier judge, who kept order in court with a six-gun. I learned there that much of what happened in the movie never happened in real life, but no matter — the legends are delicious either way.

The best part of my trip was to visit my mother, brother and other family in Sacramento, and then my daughter and her husband (and three of the world's seven greatest grandchildren) in Los Angeles. None of them packed guns.

But as I toured the vast deserts of the Southwest, one of the biggest news stories out there was from the Northeast.

The University of Massachusetts is being pressured, the story said, to get rid of its ''Minuteman'' mascot.

The Minuteman, you see, is politically incorrect because he represents self-reliant and armed citizens who clashed with Redcoats to begin the American Revolution. That image does not fit the ideals of people who favor gun control and feel that only government authorities should be armed.

The UMass story was hard to find in any regional papers after I returned, but there were other stories about guns.

One story, for example, bewailed next year's expiration of a ban on ''assault weapons,'' enacted in 1994. As I argued just before I left on my vacation, that ban is a hoax. Assault weapons have been outlawed since the 1930s and the 1994 law applies mainly to cosmetic features that offend political correctness devotees.

Locally, there was a shoot-em-up during a confrontation between two constables and some dogs. The owner of one of the dogs compared it to the gunfight at the OK Corral.

In the past, I have spoken harshly of some constables and the way they violate the rights of humans. Such issues do not seem to bother many, but there's an uproar over an incident in which constables shot three dogs, including a pit bull, that went after them as they served warrants (for parking violations) in Allentown. The pit bull survived.

Several stories have been published on the case, with one mentioning that one of the constables had a history of pulling his gun on people, including a man he shot and killed. Those episodes created relatively little publicity.

But defending yourself against an attacking dog, especially with a gun, is as politically incorrect as the Minuteman.

One of the other things I did on my vacation was to ride my motorcycle around southern Arizona. In the border towns of Nogales and Douglas, the only prominent signs put up by Mexican authorities warn that no regular citizen may be armed in Mexico. Only government authorities are allowed to have guns.

Mexico is an oligarchy that operates on tyranny and corruption, and government people want to keep it that way, so everyone but themselves is kept defenseless. You need only gaze across the border to see how well that system benefits most of its citizens — but there are people who are pushing America in that direction.

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