On the day of President Obama’s announcement concerning efforts at gun control, significantly I received, unsolicited, a shooter’s catalog in the mail. And I’m not talking about rapid-drunk bar drinks, or big-boobed girls. No, it’s a catalog for people that own, collect, have emotional affairs with, and fire guns. I’ve never ordered anything like that, so why this catalog was sent to me is a mystery.
            Still, out of curiosity, like Pandora I opened it up for a look-see. While it offered no guns themselves, (for perhaps legal reasons,) what was offered was a prolific variety of sniper scopes, laser range finders, and pages and pages of all kinds, sizes and flavors of ammunition. There were a variety of replacement gun stocks in ‘composition’ material, (including one in pink!) replacement pistol grips, and enough parts to assemble your own M-16.
            You could send away for a delirious variety of ammo magazines, including drums holding a hundred or more bullets. You could get an extending clip for your automatic pistol that holds three times the normal clip’s number of bullets – Oops! I mean ‘rounds’, in gunner jargon. And that ain’t all. There was pepper spray, motion alert sensors, shot-gun bandoliers, earplugs, hand exercisers (so you have the strength to pull the trigger,) climbing ropes and grappling hooks.
            I also noted identity-concealing face masks with built in goggles. There was also a dazzling variety of holsters, for carrying every kind of weapon from a shotgun to a Buntline Special. Some accommodated pistol sights. There were a lot of shoulder holsters so you could carry your personal defense weapon in concealment. Also available: an ankle holster for all you secret agent types.
            There is, in the catalog, a ridiculous supposition that much of this gear is for combating an anticipated zombie invasion. Hah! Hah! Hah! I would not want to be around the fool that is arming himself in belief that the zombies are coming. And I it is authentically intended to be a jest – I ain’t laughing, McGee!
            Among the concealable ballistics vests, there are ‘non-firing’ nuts-and-bolts replicas of historic guns. One wonders how easily they could be refitted to function.
            The question for me arises: what do you need a ghillie suit for? You can hide from ducks and deer in regular camouflage clothes. No; a ghillie suit, like much else in this catalog, is not about hunting. The fiction about protecting yourself from bad guys coming to take your stuff and ravage your daughters falls apart.
            The brush apes (my father’s term) that drool over this catalog aren’t thinking about robbers and rapists. They’re thinking about, planning and training for guerilla warfare; not defensive, but definitely offensive; probably against their own government and the rest of us, in their own back country paranoia.
            My sympathies here are entirely for the families of victims of senseless violence, enabled by such availability of these tools of mayhem. I don’t find sympathy for guys wearing T-shirts with slogans on ‘em like “jump into hell!” and “Kill ‘em all; let God sort ‘em out!” This attitude of savagery and the mentality of shoot-‘em-up can claim no justification from God, who commanded, unambiguously, “Thou Shalt Not Kill.”
            I’m no fan of guns; never have been, not since the cap gun cowboys-and-Indians days of my youth. I get no thrill out of hunting, though some of my friends do. I see no need for it, in these days of dwindling wildlife and well-stocked urban markets. But that’s just me. The Second Amendment says you can have a gun, so if you feel you need one, go get one. But what in the hell do you need a hundred-round magazine for? An automatic assault weapon is just that; for assault, not defense.
            Is your sense of self so weak, so inadequate that you need a gun to feel secure? I’d hate to be there when the dawn lights up to expose your delusion. Gun toters aren’t protecting anything. They’re provoking things. Guy wants to steal your stuff, he’ll figure a way to do it. My suspicion is that if you scratch the surface of these heavily-armed ‘defenders’, something ugly like racism will show up.
            I have to say, though, as I go through the catalog, that I marvel at the technology and the design. Some of these guns are beautiful designs, and I can appreciate that. But it’s just that when you get a new toy like that, and are enraptured by its beautiful engineering, you want to use it! You want to run out and just shoot something. I don’t want to be a target, so I simply stay away from it all.