Monday, November 05, 2007

Some Light Monday Reading

...on the plight of the English, and how they see the American experiment vis-a-vis guns, both via The High Road.
First up, we have this, from one English newspaper. Just a snippet:

...the United States is a deeply troubled society. According to the Violence Policy Centre, 29,569 Americans died by gunfire in 2004. When there is no war going on such a statistic is evidence that something is deeply wrong.
Against such a backdrop of catastrophe it is easy to portray gun-owners and their favourite politicians as priests in a cult of death. But a crude caricature takes us nowhere near understanding why firearms remain so dear to so many.
If a British Prime Minister was found to have a cupboard full of guns in Downing Street he could be arrested, but for an aspiring president it is almost a prerequisite for office.
This may change if Hillary Clinton wins the election and recalibrates the concept of the presidency but the gun will remain a regrettably destructive but enduring symbol of a nation’s otherwise admirable romance with liberty.

Ah, yes, statistics from the Violence Policy Center, that bastion of objective firearm policy analysis...
Personally, I think Michael Marks of the Fifty Caliber Institute was much closer to the mark when he described the VPC as "a small lobbygroup-for-hire, funded largely by Barbra Streisand." Quite telling that the writer went to the VPC instead of going to the Centers for Disease Control or the Department of Justice. Kinda tells you which way he leans, but then being an emasculated Brit that much is pretty well a given anyway.
As for the "regrettably destructive" symbolism of guns...I guarantee you a lot of Mr. Williamson's countrymen wish to hell they had some of that regrettably destructive equipment, as about 60 percent of house burglaries in the UK occur when the resident is in the house. In Texas that sort of thing tends to get people shot and I can't say that's anything but good. But really, I could probably write a book in response to what this guy says, but I find more and more that a raised middle finger and a hearty "Molon Labe!" sums it all up very nicely.

And then there's the following missive (and to whoever accused me of stealing it, I saw it here, you happy now?):

Dear UK,
What happened to you? When Germany threatened to bomb you out of existence, you cowboyed up and took to the shelters. You drank flasks of tea, sang ribald songs about Hitler, and pretty much won the spiritual war before the bad guys knew what hit them.
You died on the fences in Flanders in WWI; in WWII you ran operations behind enemy lines all over Europe that are still the stuff of conversation in military circles. Your bravery and fortitude were never in doubt.
You were once the greatest naval power in the world.
You were once a tiny island that extended its colonial reach to the farthest corners of the earth.
I came here to practice medicine at the invitation of the National Health Service. I see 30 - 40 of your post-war generation all day, every day. I see little but passive aggression and entitlement. I see statutory sick pay that has people going on extended sick leave because they "can't cope" (that's an actual NHS diagnosis by the way). I see people too cowed to ask their surgeons what body parts were removed during an operation. I see a generation of drones that will very likely never again rise to the occasion.
I see a small percentage of your elderly every day too. They are proud, vibrant people, brimming over with dignity. They often apologise for troubling me with their complaints since surely I have better things to do with truly sick people. They often have congestive heart failure, undiagnosed cancers, severe peripheral vascular disease. They don't weep when I give them bad news. They don't ask for special accommodation. They are as tough as hammered steel. They are the WWII generation.
The Flower of England is no longer your "yoof". It is your elderly. They are the standard bearers of what Britain once was. Once they are gone, in the next 10 years or so, you will be left with your weakness, your ineffectualism, your endless apathy that encourages the nanny state in which you live. You can't even dredge up the sincerity to vote in a decent government.
I'm contractually bound to be here until May 1st. When the clock runs out, I'll leave. I won't be back.
I'll sit in the US, which you often revile, and I'll know that as imperfect as it is, I'll be better off than you will ever be. You can sit on your beknighted little hunk of rock and descend into the quagmire of rules and regulations you've created.
Europe is better than you. The US is better than you. Whatever you were once, you are not now. You are little more than a convenient place to stop on the way to other places.
The United Kingdom. The irony practically writes itself.

And that's what happens when a society disarms. It removes the will to fight for those things worth fighting for, and it's going to be the death of England. I can only hope it isn't too late for the United States of America...