One of the most amazing items within the horror of the Tucson shooting this past weekend is the abundance of firearms found in the US and how a whole, dumb-ass shitload of people think it’s their absolute right to carry one around, and, use it if necessary.
Guns are part of the American heritage — we will kill you if you get in our way.
A Small Arms Survey (PDF), conducted in 2007, revealed the US is the world leader in bearing firearms, despite a much smaller population and being pretty much on the wealthy side.
The US has between 83 and 97 guns per 100 people.
From the Christian Science Monitor on the survey:
The United States has less than 5 percent of the worldâ€™s population, but between 35 and 50 percent (270 million) of the worldâ€™s civilian-owned guns.
Americans buy about 4.5 million of the 8 million new firearms manufactured every year.
The survey notes that the US is an exception to general trends of lower ownership among wealthy countries, likely because of â€œpermissive gun lawsâ€ (at least compared to other wealthy countries) and a â€œgenerally positive gun culture.â€
If current trends continue, the US will become an even more dominant force in global gun ownership.
According to CSM‘s report on the gun survey, Iraq stands at about between 28 to 50 guns per 100 people; in Yemen, a chaotic place, has a estimated 32 to 90 guns per citizen — these places can be almost considered war zones, but what is Tucson?
The problem is the frightful ignorant.
Despite no talk from President Obama about gun control, a shitload of people were so convinced (by the bullshit talk from the wingnuttery) that it was true, gun sales increased: “People were rushing out to buy guns, because they were worried [Obama] was going to take their guns away,” Vizzard said. “He didn’t have a single proposal on the table for gun laws. It defies reason. It’s a culture unto itself.” (William J. Vizzard, professor of criminal justice at California State University, Sacramento, CA).
And the sale of the firearm used by Jared Loughner, the Glock 19, has gone out of the roof since Saturday.
According to the Washington Post:
One-day sales of handguns in Arizona jumped 60 percent to 263 on Jan. 10 compared with 164 the corresponding Monday a year ago, the second-biggest increase of any state in the country, according to Federal Bureau of Investigation data.
Handgun sales rose 65 percent to 395 in Ohio; 16 percent to 672 in California; 38 percent to 348 in Illinois; and 33 percent to 206 in New York, the FBI data show.
Sales increased nationally about 5 percent, to 7,906 guns.
A shitload of firearms.
And mostly under the radar on the Tucson shooting was the real story of Joe Zamudio, and why it’s so damn stupid and dangerous, this American desire for firearms.
People are calling Zamudio a hero for helping subdue Loughner — but what is the rest of the story?
But before we embrace Zamudio’s brave intervention as proof of the value of being armed, let’s hear the whole story.
“I came out of that store, I clicked the safety off, and I was ready,” he explained on Fox and Friends.
“I had my hand on my gun.
I had it in my jacket pocket here.
And I came around the corner like this.”
Zamudio demonstrated how his shooting hand was wrapped around the weapon, poised to draw and fire.
As he rounded the corner, he saw a man holding a gun.
“And that’s who I at first thought was the shooter,” Zamudio recalled.
“I told him to ‘Drop it, drop it!’ ”
But the man with the gun wasn’t the shooter.
He had wrested the gun away from the shooter.
“Had you shot that guy, it would have been a big, fat mess,” the interviewer pointed out.
Zamudio agreed: I was very lucky. Honestly, it was a matter of seconds.
Two, maybe three seconds between when I came through the doorway and when I was laying on top of [the real shooter], holding him down.
So, I mean, in that short amount of time I made a lot of really big decisions really fast. â€¦ I was really lucky.
In fact, Zamudio shoved the innocent guy against the wall, still thinking he was the shooter.
The chilling part of Zamudio’s story? “I clicked the safety off, and I was ready.”
Bullshit on luck.