Gun Nuts, Terrorists and The Knee Jerk Reaction

Killing two birds with one cartridge of semi-automatic, high velocity bullets

By Tony Sokol

2015 might go down as one of the most fear-mongering year since the aftermath of the Twin Tower attacks in 2001. It seemed that once a week the news pummeled us with some version of the same headlines, mass shootings and terror attacks. And if it weren’t the headlines, it was the candidates. We watched President Obama almost lose his shit over gun violence in a televised speech that should go down with the Gettysburg Address if you keep tabs on that kind of thing. Of course, the right immediately lost their shit on Obama and any idea that there should be any kind of restrictions on gun ownership and offered more guns as the best solution.

After the California terror attack followed the Paris catastrophe, people lobbed charges that Obama wasn’t acting swiftly and decisively enough and suggested more guns. It seems every night we go to sleep with the same headlines and wake up to the same knee-jerk reactions. Every knee-jerk reaction breeds a counter-reaction. A lot of people read a story about a mass shooting and believe, in their hearts, that this could all stop if only guns weren’t so readily available. People who own guns may initially react by wanting to shoot these people, but stick to their guns about more guns. Politicians tend to listen to these people. I think it’s because they own guns.

Four out of seven people who believe that more guns will solve the problem of bad gun usage also get upset when the president doesn’t do enough about terrorism. I just made that up, but it is a statistic. Obama’s restraint is a prickly point to them. They want to be taken off the leash. Why don’t we unleash them and solve both problems? To paraphrase LBJ, butter them up with guns, make it all legal by giving them constitutional dispensation in the form of some kind of militia insignia and ship them off to take care of the terrorists. They say they know how to do it. They really want to use their guns and if they take their guns with them we won’t have a problem at home.

Ever hear stories about how people used to leave the doors unlocked without fear of being bludgeoned or shot or robbed? That past can be the future. Combine the two groups and they can take all their guns with them. Chances are they won’t get over any border patrol and many of them might not have passports, but they have guns and that will solve any problem. There are a lot of people in America who stock up on guns. A lot of them also keep more than a year’s worth of water, but that’s just another statistic and we’ve had enough of those. They believe it is a god-given right that Jesus Hancock wrote right in the declaration of independence. And they’re right, they have guns. Some of them have a lot of guns. And a lot of those guns are very big guns that shoot lots of bullets very quickly, making it extremely difficult to duck.

These people usually aren’t the hunters, who usually know enough about gun laws not to worry that their guns will be taken away. It’s about the people who want the really big guns. You don’t need an Uzi to go hunting no matter how big your barbecue is going to be.

It doesn’t make much sense to stockpile weapons under the old constitutional rules. There is no way an armed civilian militia would be able to overthrow the American government, regardless of what it becomes. No matter how many guns someone owns and no matter how many of their friends who own guns join them they will never match the fire power that the government can put together. I believe in revolution and would love to see some major radical change happen in my lifetime, but as a realist, I know everyone is outgunned. Partly because a lot of the people who own the guns would also have to fight the people who aren’t in the government who want to take away their guns.

I understand conspiracy theories and know fully well that one day on some holiday that falls on a Thursday, after all the guns are taken away, soldiers are going to come rushing into homes nationwide and ship law-abiding citizens off to the secret death camps that have been built under our noses. Left, right and center, we all agree the government is evil because government is evil. The very idea that some body of human fallout has risen through the slime of politics in order to have the power to tell other people what to do is evil. But we can’t shoot all of them, because they multiply in times of distress.

Personally, I think they best gun control solution ever offered in the history of history was by Chris Rock who basically said let everyone who wants a gun have a gun, but bullets? Those are gonna cost ya. Short of that, let them take their guns where they’ll do the most good, the heart of the land that wants to kill Americans who have guns. It’s a perfect fit. It’s where the oil is. It’s where action is. They can drive big SUVs. It’s like Texas without the booze, because a lot of that area is dry, and whoever gets sent over will have to abide by local ordinances. The second to last thing most Syrian or Iranian or Afghani police want to do is arrest a bunch of drunk Americans with guns flouting their second amendment rights and hatred of The Islamic State, but that can be interpreted as just another statistic.

Local ordinances would also include killing civilians. Sadly, most terrorists are actually civilians in that they don’t belong to a specific military unit. But even more sadly, all of the non-terrorists who aren’t in a specific military unit are civilians and the front line in any urban warfare. So the men who get shipped over will also have to abide by those rules and apply discretion. They can probably get through those problems in some advisory position in the mercenary trade. But if not they have guns and there’s probably a solution in there somewhere.

The best solution to a knee-jerk reaction to a complicated issue is to shoot it in the knees. If you think people who think like me are just potential not-so-innocent bystanders, you’re wrong. We’re just collateral damage.

Published January 7th, 2016

Tony Sokol is a writer, playwright and musician. He writes for Den of GeekThe Chiseler, and wrote for Altvariety,, Daily Offbeat. Dark Media Press, Wicked Mystic and other magazines. He has had over 20 plays produced in NYC, including Vampyr Theatre and the rock opera "AssassiNation: We Killed JFK." He appeared on the Joan Rivers (TV) Show, Strange Universe and Britain's "The Girlie Show."