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Of all the ridiculous and underhanded tactics progressives are using to convince Americans we don’t need firearms, once of the silliest is exemplified in an opinion piece from CNN entitled, “Not Man Enough? Buy a Gun.”
The author of this piece, Paul Waldman (an extreme progressive, needless to say), played on an ad from Bushmaster to the tune of “Consider your Man Card Reissued” if you purchase one of their rifles.
Mr. Waldman apparently did not pick up on the notion that the Bushmaster ad was a joke. But neither did he consider whether the ad had merit: namely, Real Men own guns.
The implication is that men who take an interest in firearms are compensating for something they lack. “As we begin a long-overdue examination of where gun culture in America has gone,” writes Mr. Waldman, “we can’t avoid the way guns have become so entwined with masculine anxiety, as so many men seek to find their identity in instruments of destruction.”
I don’t know where Mr. Waldman lives, but I live in the deeply rural panhandle of north Idaho, sometimes called Redneckistan (that’s a joke, Mr. Waldman). Firearms of all shapes and sizes are as common as pickups. Around here, even the progressives are armed. In fact, to find someone who doesn’t own a gun is surprising, and usually elicits the question of “Why not?” It’s also worth noting that invasive crimes such as home robberies are notably lower here, because the bad guys know what will happen if they try to force their way into someone’s house.
So to those of us in rural America, equating manhood and gun ownership is comical in the extreme. Guns are merely tools, like hammers or chainsaws or tractors. They are used to keep one’s person and property protected against those who would violate it. And, like fine art or Elvis memorabilia, some people like to collect firearms … not as “instruments of destruction,” but as useful tools that have a variety of functions.
If someone wanted to break into Mr. Waldman’s home (which presumably contains no firearms), he would have little recourse except to wring his hands and say, “Oh, dearie me! Dearie me!” as he watched the intruders do whatever horrible things they wanted – because let’s face it, without the possession of the right tools, a man is virtually helpless. Fists are useless against firearms.
So why do men like guns?
Men are biologically programmed to be protectors, and protectors need the proper tools. An armed man is the first line of defense for his wife, children and home. But progressives view this attitude as retro, primitive and above all unnecessary. Mr. Waldman has apparently forgotten what a man’s function is.
Mr. Waldman also linked the popularity of 1950s Western movies to male anxiety. “For the post-war American male,” he writes, “an office job and a house in the suburbs offered few opportunities to prove one’s manhood, so tales of two-fisted cowboys wielding six-guns became irresistible.”
Um, Mr. Waldman, the 1950s male didn’t need to prove his masculinity. He already had, by fighting a war against some of the worst tyrants in history. Westerns weren’t popular because of six-guns; they were popular because they depicted men doing what men do best: protecting. Using the tools of their trade, heroes in Westerns fought the bad guys, defended homes, protected women and came out ahead at the end. Y’know, the old concept of “good vs. evil.” Yet progressives view this attitude as retro, primitive and above all unnecessary.
“It’s not enough to have a hunting rifle over your mantle,” sneers Waldman. “You need an entire arsenal, just in case the government falls, society disintegrates and you have to protect your cave – sorry, your home – from the marauding hordes.”
Let’s see – $16 trillion dollars in debt and rising, gangs roaming the streets, flash mobs, the knockout game … yeah, obviously we’re a bunch of deranged lunatics for thinking the government may fall and society is disintegrating. As for defending our caves, you’re right. That IS our intent.
But increased gun sales, Waldman implies, are solely because wimpy gullible men are falling for the slimy sales tactics of gun manufacturers who goad buyers into thinking they’ll become like John Wayne if only they’d buy a few more rifles. But let me put it this way: Who’s more secure in his masculinity? The man who buys the right tools for the job? Or the man who mocks others and wants to take the tools away lest anyone threaten HIS masculinity?
Progressives are so intimidated by scary-looking guns that they can’t see them for what they are: tools. Instead, they have to endow them with phallic characteristics. But as the saying goes, sometimes a cigar is just a cigar. Sometimes an AR-15 is just an AR-15.
Mr. Waldman and others like him support a powerful government and, by extension, powerless individuals. By mocking men who own guns, they cleverly avoid the real reason men (and women) should possess firearms: that an armed populace is capable of defending against a despotic government.
Why do you think the men in 1776 personally owned weapons that were equal or better than those of the British? Was it because they suffered from male anxiety and were compensating for something? Or was it because they knew they had a job to do? Because they had the right tools, we (the people) have a United States. Unarmed men couldn’t have done the job.
People purchase tools commensurate with the job on hand. If you’re building a house, you don’t use a plastic toy hammer. If you’re hunting deer, you don’t use a rock. If you’re defending your home against a robbery, you don’t use a kitchen knife. If you’re fighting a rapist, you don’t whistle. And if you’re defending your country against an overbearing and tyrannical government, you don’t use your fists. You use tools commensurate with the task.
So yes, men are “compensating” for something by buying and using Bushmasters: They’re preparing to defend against an increasingly tyrannical government trying to restrict the God-given freedoms of We the People.
That’s why men need guns: Because the government has them.