Friday, December 04, 2015


Salon's Sophia Tesfaye is horrified at a new video release from the NRA's Wayne LaPierre:
“The age of terror”: NRA’s new fearmongering ad campaign equates American exceptionalism to more guns

... The ninth installment in the NRA’s “Freedom’s Safest Place” campaign features the group’s leader, Wayne LaPierre and is titled, “Demons At Our Door.” The ad was released just days after 56-year-old Robert Dear entered a Colorado Springs Planned Parenthood and shot 12 people, killing three, and days before this latest shooting rampage in San Bernardino. In it, La Pierre makes specific reference to “the age of terror” and goes on to fear-monger over the threat of terror and violence to promote the NRA. The ad is currently running prominently on Fox News.

“Innocents like us,” LaPierre says, addressing his NRA members directly to camera, “will continue to be slaughtered in concert halls, sports stadiums, restaurants and airplanes.”

“They will come to where we worship,” LaPierre warns as ominous music waves over blurred images of American everyday life, “where we educate and where we live.”

“But when evil knocks on our doors, Americans have a power no other people on the planet share,” LaPierre proudly proclaims, touting the Second Amendment. “Let fate decide if mercy is offered to the demons at our door.”

The ad is alarmist -- but, if this New York Times story is accurate, it's perfectly attuned to America's mood:
... As the long roll call of mass shootings added a prosaic holiday party in San Bernardino, Calif., to its list, a wide expanse of America’s populace finds itself engulfed in a collective fear, a fear tinged with confusion and exasperation and a broad brew of emotions. The fear of the ordinary. Going to work. Eating a meal in a restaurant. Sending children to school. Watching a movie.

Wendy Malloy, 49, who lives in Tampa, Fla., said she now worried about being caught in an attack on a daily basis, just doing what anyone does. “When my son gets out of the car in the morning and walks into his high school,” she said. “When I drop him at his part-time job at a supermarket. When we go to the movies, concerts and festivals. When I walk into my office. It is a constant, grinding anxiety. And it gets louder every single day.”

... In the aftermath of the San Bernardino shootings, coming close on the heels of the Colorado killings, The New York Times invited people to respond online about their fear of a mass shooting.

More than 5,000 wrote in. In addition, many others were interviewed on Thursday around the country: teachers and students and office workers, even some Army veterans who confided that they felt safer in war zones than on the streets of the United States.

People spoke of being spooked by gestures once ignored as utterly unremarkable. As one young woman from Massachusetts put it: “The guy in the corner always looking at his watch or the woman reaching into her bag too quickly.”

... People are able to recite with precision how often they think about a mass shooting touching them. Every day. Twice a week. Up to four times a day. Every other day. Every two weeks. Every time they’re in a crowded space. Whenever her teenagers are out. Every time she walks into her office and back to the parking garage. Every day. Every day. Every day.

For a 16-year-old in Berkeley, it is “almost constantly.” ...
To some extent, I understand the fear. On the other hand, I was here in New York for 9/11 and anthrax, not to mention the crack years a decade or so earlier. I got here in the bad old 1970s, and I'd grown up in Boston, which actually had a higher per-capita murder rate at the time. Part of me thinks, You now know that you could theoretically be killed at any moment? Welcome to my world. But I'm white, and I was always able to live in neighborhoods that, if not exactly safe, weren't the epicenters of fear. It wasn't that bad.

I don't know what to say about this. Yes, folks, you could draw the worst hand. This could happen to you. On the other hand, the odds are still in your favor. So live your lives.

In any event, conservatives have mastered the art of stoking fear and offering right-wing solidarity, or something similar, as the bulwark against the fear that's stoked. Want to be protected against marauding urban superpredators or undocumented Mexican rapists or terroristic Syrian toddlers with Ebola? Vote Reagan. Vote Trump. Buy gold. Stockpile dried food. And surround yourself with as many guns and rounds of ammo as you can possibly afford.

Now, if you keep the guns and ammo flowing the way the NRA insists we must, evildoers can eagerly join the arms race -- a group that now clearly includes homegrown terrorists. I keep being told on Twitter that the problem in San Bernardino wasn't guns, it was terrorism. Actually -- as any idiot can see -- it was both.

But fear is the national mood. The NRA ad above says, "I feel your fear" -- and adds that the gun demimonde is "freedom's safest place." In San Bernardino and Colorado Springs, it was terrorism's safest place, but never mind.


Glennis said...

"Innocent like us" says Wayne LaPierre??????

His hands are dripping with blood.

Leo Artunian said...

I remember when I was young seeing something on television that frightened me, and being convinced that that thing knew I was frightened and would hunt me down and do something nasty to me. But I was six, and I outgrew that kind of fear. It's just the flip side of egotism -- everything's about me, so obviously all that's evil will target me to wipe me out! Maybe it's time for everyone to read R. L. Stevenson's Aes Triplex again, and just get on with life.

Victor said...

And now, there'll be no need to get your fat (terrorist, or not) ass off your Barcolounger to go to a gun show or gun store to buy all the arms you need!

Watch your TV, and shop at home for your guns!

I wonder if the deliver to ALL neighborhoods, or are there some hoods that they don’t think are neighborly enough to ship guns to?
(If you know what I mean… And I think you do…)
My guess, though, is the love of green tops all other colors and religions.

After all, guns and bullets are colorblind.
Besides, guns don’t kill people. People do.
And more trite shite from a bull's rear-end, like that..................

Belvoir said...

I'm still waiting for someone to ask the loud gun-humpers publicly and preferably on live TV, "When has a 'good' guy with a gun ever stopped a bad guy with a gun?"

Seriously, outside of movies and other fictions, when has that ever happened? Ever? I mean, the NRA freaks are allowed to spout nonstop on tv about this fantasy macho hero scenario, and NO ONE ever, ever asks them when the good guy with the gun stops the bad guy with the gun. We've had thousands of mass shootings in my lifetime, often in places where "good guys" ought to have guns and NEVER has that stopped the killers. NEVER even a record of any "good guy" even trying. A Hollywood scenario, a childish rescue fantasy , sold to the masses by horrible people with a financial interest in guns and armaments and in people killing each other. We truly are a sick and sad and violent society, it's beyond doubt when the merchants of death and war are treated by our media as respectable voices. And opposition to things like guns and war are drowned out and excluded. It's fucked up.

Feud Turgidson said...

I think Victor's caught what's going on here a lot nearer the bull's-eye than Steve M.

You and I see this ridiculously biweekly or so pattern of public massacre horror, and we THINK we're seeing guns & ammo, spleens, gore, oozing brains, grievously wounds, torn up folks all moaning crippled up for life, blood so thick it's having trouble deciding whether to stay in liquid form or right away to hard into a lacquer or else spritz aromatically with the steam rising from bodies ripped open; we see DEAD people, and way too graphic evidence of how exactly they got that way.

But the Good Triggerfinger Folks at the multilevered marketing scheme known as the NRA and particularly in Big Shooter America Central, THEY see MARKETING OPPORTUNITY!

Gun-centric cooking shows, gun scout jammmerees, Handel's Messiah Locked & Loaded, Baby Jeebus swaddled in dispersion ceramic pocketed kevlar, 24/7 GunHelp Hotline:

'Just remember, that's toll-free G.U.N.-H.E.L.P. 486-4357, and for a limited time take advantage of our Hot Pocket Drop Guarantee: all you gotta do is order up and either we arrange to drone-drop you our latest A/R and a thousand rounds inside FIFFFF-TEEEEEN minutes, no matter where you are or how hot a hell zone you're caught up in, don't matter to us whether you're surrounded by Bad Guys with Guns or Good Guys with Guns, we don't judge, we just supply, or if we don't come thru: your funeral's on us!'

Stately Plump Buck said...

"Ammo akhbar, Guns are great!
in the NRA caliphate."