My “Dumbness Victory” Or Fooling Fools for Fun and Profit

A few weeks ago I reported about an anti-rights propaganda film called Gun Fight

being shown on HBO throughout April and May. The film, which claims to be a balanced documentary showing both sides of the gun rights issue, is actually a “tingle up the thigh” commercial for the Brady Bunch, and their young rising star Colin Goddard.  

The film presented very reasonable-seeming anti-rights advocates in comfortable conversation, and very radical-seeming rights advocates ranting and railing.  They achieved this by sitting down and talking with proponents of gun control to get their side, and cobbling together snippets of rights advocates from rallies, protests, and hallway ambushes to get ours.  They did have footage of rights advocates carefully explaining our position, including several hours of interviews with me, but they chose not to use any of that footage.

I recently received some “fan mail” from an HBO viewer named John who wanted to let me know what he thought of my brief appearances in the film.  His note confirmed for me the effectiveness of the HBO propaganda and the gullibility of the public.  I enjoyed John’s comments so much I thought others might find them equally entertaining and edifying so I decided to reprint his note:

Jeff, I see lots of stupid people every day. But you are the dumbest of the dumb. I saw your ridiculous speech to the gunowners’ group on HBO, and the meanness factor gives you the dumbness victory over the rest of the pack.

“Whatever’s in front of you dies”? Really, it never makes sense to shoot to disarm or disable, like cops do? No one needs instruction about not carrying the weapon when they’ll be drinking…stuff like that?

A five year old knows enough? What’s going on with the many little kids we hear about– killing each other while playing with guns? Maybe they don’t know everything they need to know.

You really are a fool. Look, you’ve probably got a small dick..and no amount of over-compensation with all this cowboy gun-talk and shooting will change that. Grow up.

… and my reply:

Dear John, 

Thank you for your insightful note.  It’s amazing how much you were able to discern about me from such a short video clip.  I have indeed been a cowboy, both working ranches and riding rodeo, and I have guest hosted a radio program called GunTalk.  And yes, I did do a lot of shooting when I was growing up and I still do as often as I can.  There were a few other points where you missed the mark though.

First, you did not see my speech on HBO.  You saw a small, carefully selected segment of my speech.  Second, I did not say, “Whatever’s in front of you dies.” I said that whatever is in front of the muzzle of the gun when it is fired dies (or is killed, or is destroyed).  I wasn’t talking about tactics, I was talking about firearms function and safety: If a person knows that touching the trigger makes the gun fire and that whatever is in front of the gun when it is fired is going to be destroyed, or killed – as any 5-year old could tell you – that’s all a person with two brain cells to rub together really needs to know to be safe with a gun – everything else is just application of that knowledge.  Thus the core rules of firearms safety: Treat every gun as a loaded gun.  Never put your finger inside the trigger guard until ready to shoot.  Never allow a gun to point at anything you’re not willing to kill or destroy.  No adult – who knows what every 5-year old knows – has any excuse for ever mishandling a gun. 

Which brings me to my third point: What sort of instruction does any responsible person need regarding carrying a gun when they’ll be drinking? 

Responsible people don’t need government-mandated training and irresponsible people won’t benefit from such training.  This is borne out by the fact that states with no training requirements are statistically the same as states with strict training requirements when it comes to permit-holders involved in firearms-related accidents, mistakes, criminal activity, or general stupidity with guns – all of which are vanishingly rare among permit-holders in all states – because permit holders are by-and-large very responsible people.

Some of this might have come through in the HBO film had the director not taken only my opening “attention-getter” comments and left out the meat of my speech.  But that wasn’t what she was looking for.  She wanted to make me and others who believe in individual rights and responsibilities look mean and stupid while making gun prohibitionists look compassionate and wise.

 I was sure that American audiences were too savvy to fall for such obvious bias and distortions, but you’ve proven me wrong, John, and, as Benjamin Franklin put it, “Any fool can criticize, condemn and complain, and most fools do.”


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