The Common Sense Language of Gun Control

Words have more power than just about anything. Words can get us married. Words can get us thrown out of bars. Words (in the form of outrageous lies) can get people elected to political office.

In fact, words have the power to change a discussion to a completely different topic.

As an example, look what words have done to the pro-choice / pro-life discussion. If an extraterrestrial NSA analyst was listening in on that debate, they might assume that the argument was over whether women had the right to buy Flintstone vitamins since the language speaks more to “healthcare” than abortion issues.

We don’t have to look far to see what kind of impact words have had on the gun debate.

Using our advanced underground particle literacy accelerator laboratory, located in an underground complex in the foothills of South Dakota, I’ve completed an analysis of words and their impact on the gun debate.

Impact of words on the gun debate

I think the phrase “commonsense gun laws” might be the most dangerous of them all. Using the phrase “common sense” is like a preemptive nuclear strike. When you throw out a term like “common sense” in the war of words, you’re immediately claiming the high ground and establishing your position as a given. It’s up to the opposing party to knock you off.

Heck, you can preface the most ridiculous of arguments with “common sense” to win virtually any debate.

“We should consider common sense solutions to America’s weight problem by doing things like banning large Cokes.”

“We should think about common sense solutions to fairness in reporting by putting Piers Morgan in charge of the FCC.”

“We should pursue common sense solutions to population control by deporting everyone who likes turnips.”

Part of the reason “common sense” is so dangerous is that it sounds so disarming.

So how do you go about fighting common sense? How do you overcome being the bad guy resisting the warm and fuzzy argument that’s based on common sense?

I like to use a technique developed here in the southern United States. It’s called the “bless your heart” attack.

Contrary to the point of this article the phrase “bless your heart” has absolutely nothing to do with words. It has everything to do with demeanor, facial expression and a voice dripping with high fructose corn syrup.

Delivered correctly, “bless your heart” delivers 25 megatons of nuclear insult to your target. (Tweet This)

Said to someone with the correct technique, it translates loosely as “you’re a tiresome lout and have the IQ of a can of spackle.”

So take a lesson. When someone tells you about commonsense gun laws, give your best politician smile and ask them to help you understand exactly how it represents ’common sense.

Example: “You’ll have to forgive me, I haven’t had my coffee yet today. How is that common sense exactly?”

One of two things will happen. First, if your opponent is simply parroting a talking point, you’ll expose them for doing so. Second, if your opponent has any knowledge of the subject matter at all, you have deflected the common sense preemptive strike and started an actual discussion, at which point victory is assured for you.

What’s the conclusion? Guns don’t kill people, words kill people! That’s just common sense.

While you’re here, why not grab a copy of my free eBook, A Fistful of Shooting Tips? It’ll help make you a better handgun shooter and the envy of your range in no time!

Phil’s Phobias, Urticating Caterpillars and the Gun Debate

One of the joys of publishing written diatribe for public consumption is the comments and feedback from the… internet. Consider this recent example.

Phil from Australia writes…

I’m glad I live in Australia, with controlled gun ownership, where all guns must be locked away. EG. I read a story where a 3 year old boy shoots himself…….go figure.

Well there you have it. A random anecdote trumps decades of factual data, at least in Phil’s mind.

But when you step back and look at a comment like this, it just illustrates the real challenge behind the gun debate. You see, Phil is not alone. Think about how many people have their views about gun policy shaped by random “I heard that…” anecdotes.

I heard about a shark attack once. But that didn’t stop me from taking showers. For long.(Tweet This)

If one invests about four minutes to research the gun debate, it becomes pretty darn clear that guns themselves aren’t the driving issue for crime. Gun ownership is way up. Crime is way down. When folks aren’t robbed of their rights of self-protection, crime falls. Accidents are at an all time low. The vast majority of gun-related crime involves convicted felons. Guns are used far, far more frequently to prevent people from getting hurt than for hurting people. Let me repeat that.

Guns are used far, far more frequently to prevent people from getting hurt than for hurting people. (Tweet This)

In other words, a rational look at the data to examine the pros and cons of gun use yields a clear result. Guns save lives.

So what has so much power to trump decades of historical data and cause people to hold so dearly to viewpoints that have no basis in fact?

Hint: It’s fear.

You see, the power of fear is mind-bottling. You know, just like Chazz Michael Michaels so eloquently explained. “You know, when things are so crazy it gets your thoughts all trapped, like in a bottle?”

Phil is a perfect example of the power of the fear mentality.

You see, Phil lives in a country where children are 94.3 times more likely to be eaten by a crocodile than win a regional spelling bee.

Well, maybe I made that statistic up, but I’m sure it’s happened at least once, so that pretty much settles the argument.

Conclusion? If you don’t want to become croc-lunch, practice spelling the word “insouciant.”

I decided to consult famed behavioral psychiatrist, Dr. Emil Shuffhausen, to explore Phil’s case further. Based on preliminary analysis, there are a number of other things that frighten Phil.

Australian Phil's Fears

Australian Phil’s Fears

 At risk of causing Phil more undue stress, I want to point out some other hazards of living in Australia.

  • 715 people died tripping, slipping and stumbling, which makes one think Fosters Beer should be locked away.
  • 26 Australians fell off chairs to their earthly end. Consider working in the Lotus position. Yoga is all the rage right now.
  • 58 people died just falling out of bed, although there are not footnotes on which activity immediately proceeded these tragic accidents.
  • Australians are equally susceptible to death from human bites as dog bites. No comment.
  • More venomous arthropod warning signs might be in order, as urticating caterpillars are more likely to kill than crocodile attacks or earthquakes.

But here’s the thing. People like Phil aren’t really concerned with all these other potential hazards. Why?

Fear dominates attitude towards guns because people don’t assign any potential benefits to gun ownership – they only consider the negatives. (Tweet This)

That’s right. When subconsciously evaluating the cost / benefit of various life activities, which might kill us, people always consider the benefit side of the equation for things like swimming, walking, sitting, sleeping and even keeping pet urticating caterpillars. Yes, any of these activities can be lethal, but that’s OK because a larger upside is perceived to balance the risks.

We all just assume there are plenty of benefits to sleeping, sitting and caterpillar husbandry, right? (Tweet This)

So Phil, and others like you: Be intellectually honest about the debate. There are always two sides to any decision. Even a fart has benefits, so consider the other side of the scale before opining on gun control.

Oh, and Phil. One more thing. Nine people died in Australia last year as a result of horse-drawn vehicle incidents.

I sure am glad I live in a country with controlled horsepower transportation, where New York’s new Mayor is banning horse-drawn carriage tours. (Tweet This)

 

Be sure to check out our book, The Rookie’s Guide to Guns and Shooting, Handgun Edition. It’s available in print and Kindle format at Amazon:

The Rookie's Guide to Guns and Shooting, Handgun Edition

The Rookie’s Guide to Guns and Shooting, Handgun Edition

Be sure to check out our newest book, The Rookie’s Guide to the Springfield Armory XD-S. It’s available in print and Kindle format at Amazon:

The Rookie's Guide to the Springfield Armory XD-S

The Rookie’s Guide to the Springfield Armory XD-S

Boiling Frogs, Gun Allergies and How To Influence Enemies

Starbucks gun debate

Having spent decades in the marketing field trying to convince people to buy things they don’t want, I get it.

I get that people become acclimated to ideas and new concepts as a result of continued exposure. So when open carry advocates claim that their aim is to desensitize the public to the presence of guns, I understand the logic. Look how well it’s working with the gutting of our Constitution.

Bend a fundamental rule of law here and there and before you know it, you can achieve some real progress! (Tweet This)

What I don’t understand is the rationale behind an “instant desensitization” strategy by staging “in your face” open carry gun parties in an attempt to influence the non-believing community.

Let’s consider a recent example.

Starbucks had a long-standing “gun policy” of… following local laws. If local law allowed open carry, fine. If local law allows concealed carry, fine. That’s a win for us folks. I don’t want businesses making individual decisions about my rights. I want them to worry about whatever their business is and to just follow the law of the land when it comes to constitutional issues. If they want to dis-invite me as a gun owner under their private property rights, that’s OK. It’s also my right to shop elsewhere.

But then idiocy reared it’s ugly head. The “other” side adopted a strategy of trying to force Starbucks to become anti-gun. Even though they were never pro-gun. They were, and are, pro-coffee. That’s it. And all it should be. Gun control proponents staged protests and media events to force Starbucks to take a political position that had absolutely nothing to do with their business. While I think that was a stupid move, I understand it. After all, they’re idiots. And desperate. Well, in fairness, they’re not all idiots. They’re just choosing to make decisions from a fear-based emotional perspective. Like NBC executives.

In response, some in the pro-gun community decided that the right defense was to be offensive. So they staged “Bring your arsenal to Starbucks” days and showed up with rifles on the backs, a pistol or twelve and perhaps a couple of MK-19 automatic grenade launchers. Because Starbucks would be thrilled to have the Internet Ninja Militia show up in their stores, fully armed, and spend five or six bucks on some coffee.  Boy did we show them!

The response from Starbucks was predictable. While reluctant to outright ban guns, they did issue a statement that they politely request gun owners don’t carry in their stores. What did we expect?

So why did this happen?

The short answer is that our side orchestrated and achieved a colossal failure of desensitization.

Think about it.

If you’re allergic to guinea pig dander and head to your allergist for treatment, they’re probably not going to lock you in a chamber with 12,000 of the squeaky little rodents and hope you get used to it.

That would be an epic failure of desensitization and would cost a fortune in guinea pig food. Instead, the doctor will give you a weekly injection of guinea pig pheromones, in gradually increasing doses, until your body learns to cope, or you start to become romantically attracted to guinea pigs. The process may take years. Eventually, you won’t break out in hives when sharing a bowl of timothy hay with a couple of abyssinian guinea pigs.

On a similar note, I’ve yet to see a frog jump into a pot of boiling water. All the boiled frogs I know chose to desensitize themselves by jumping into nice, lukewarm crock pots. Then they would hang out, have a glass of champagne and enjoy a gradual rise in water temperature. Another classic example of gradual desensitization.

The point is simple. If you want to acclimate someone to a new point of view, you need to do it gently over time.

No one decides they like liver and onions or Season 8 of The Bachelor after just one sitting. (Tweet This)

Our unworthy opponents in favor of gun control are masters at the desensitization strategy. It’s rare to find a public spokesperson calling for outright gun confiscation. But that’s what they all want. Instead, they propose bit-sized nibbles that are digestible by the uninformed. “Let’s implement just one common sense measure to increase public safety.” Or perhaps “We agree with the right to own guns, we’re just asking for more thorough background checks.” Unless you’re whacked out on Mighty Putty fumes, you know exactly what their long-term goal is. If you are whacked out on Mighty Putty fumes, please don’t drive. Or vote.

Heck, I’m in favor of legal open carry as much as anyone. If I see someone open carrying, I know they’re generally the least of my worries. But I’ve been properly de-sensitized. But someone like Piers Morgan? Or the average Starbucks customer? Not so much.

When a business is being extorted by the anti-gunners, just stop by, dressed in your normal fashion. Buy something. And tell them you appreciate them focusing on their business – not the yahoos boycotting for their cause du jour.

Remember folks, we can be right, and still lose. Just ask Sarah Palin. (Tweet This)

Top 10 Reasons SHOT Show Is Awesome

The range portion of SHOT Show is equally epic. What you see here is about 10% of Media Day at the Range.

The range portion of SHOT Show is equally epic. What you see here is about 10% of Media Day at the Range.

SHOT Show is an annual pilgrimage of fun, friends, work, pain, exhaustion, more work, more fun and certainly a lot more pain.

It’s infinite, seemingly boundless and more crowded than a buy one get one free bordello, but you still manage to frequently run into people you know among the 68,000 attendees.

I love it.

I got to thinking, which is always dangerous, about why it’s my favorite event of the year and came up with this list…

Where else but SHOT Show is a tactical raptor not even remotely out of place?

Where else but SHOT Show is a tactical raptor not even remotely out of place?

1. The people. There’s always a low-end, like the guy walking around with a t-shirt that said “Vagitarian.” Fortunately, the true class acts use most of the oxygen in the Sands Convention Center. Like this year’s Energizer Bunny, Pro Shooter Todd Jarrett. He was everywhere, all the time. Must be cloned… And this years Best Disposition Award goes to Team Smith & Wesson’s Julie Golob. I know she had an exhausting schedule, but you couldn’t catch her without a glowing smile. Theodoric of Nooge spottings are always a popular pastime and the rocker didn’t disappoint this year – he was all over, gun groupies in tow. Architect of the LaPierreCare Affordable Gun Act, NRA CEO and Executive Vice President Wayne LaPierre made time for some floor walking. But the very best part is catching up with industry friends – especially the ones you haven’t met yet.

2. Truth in reporting. It’s a refreshing break from the mainstream media. I looked and looked, but to no avail – Piers Morgan and Chris Matthews were nowhere to be found. Also, you’re too busy to turn on a TV, so you get a much-needed break from the state network propaganda political machine. Oh, and the press room? I did some quick math and estimated that the average reporter there owns more firearms than pairs of socks. My kind of company for sure.

3. Gun Control Debate. The only gun control debate was whether you can fit one or two fingers on the new Beretta Pico without the magazine extension.

4. New inventions! While new products from established companies are well publicized, SHOT Show is where you find the startups with a new idea. For example, this year, I ran across LabRadar. They offer a portable radar kit to track bullet velocity. Brilliant. Or perhaps Adaptive Tactical – makers of the Sidewinder Venom drum magazine kit for Mossberg pump shotguns. Can you say home defense innovation?

A low-rider mobile armory? Why not?

A low-rider mobile armory? Why not?

5. I spy. If you looked really, really carefully, you just might spot tiny stickers of flying, ummm, body parts, placed strategically by Top Shot’s Chris Cerino.

6. Dinner. Yes, there are lot’s of great dining opportunities in Vegas, but I’m talking about the NSSF State of the Industry Dinner. I started doing this a couple of years ago and now it’s a “must do” on our schedule. It’s a great opportunity to dine and schmooze with a couple thousand of your best friends. And the entertainment rocks. This year, it was the magic duo of Penn & Teller who pleased the crowd with a dose of humor and their always impressive magic bullets trick. They must know their audience!

7. Perspective. The announcement of a drum magazine for pump shotguns (Adaptive Tactical) was perceived as a good idea, not the end of all life on planet earth, as might be reported by MSNBC.

An honorable mention addition to the list might be the spontaneous happy hours that break out at many booths every afternoon, like this Crimson Trace 20th Anniversary celebration.

An honorable mention addition to the list might be the spontaneous happy hours that break out at many booths every afternoon, like this Crimson Trace 20th Anniversary celebration.

8. Wagyu beef. Wolfgang Puck had the foresight to open a Cut restaurant in the hallway between my hotel room and the show floor. Can you say steak butter? I don’t mean butter-flavored steak, I mean a steak with the consistency and flavor of warm butter. Thanks for lightening my wallet, Wolfgang. #SteakGasm

9. Contagion. It’s the most fun way there is to get the cold or flu. Picking up the same guns as 67,999 other people is a surefire way to do your own live rendition of the movie Outbreak.

10. The National Shooting Sports Foundation (NSSF) crew. These folks kill it. Every year. Having done far too many trade shows from the vendor side, I know exactly what it takes to organize and pull off an event of this magnitude. Yet you’d be hard pressed to find an NSSF staffer not wearing a big grin and looking to help you find your way. Not only is SHOT Show the place for vendors and gun retailers to meet and do business for the coming year, it generates “profits” for the NSSF that are turned around into productive programs like Project ChildSafe. Gotta love it. Thank you NSSF!

P.S. – If you’d like to check out more photos of SHOT Show 2014, just check out our Facebook SHOT Show album. We’re also adding pictures to our Pinterest SHOT Show board.

I Do Not Like Guns Here Or There, I Do Not Like Them Anywhere

Dianne Feinstein Dr. Seuss I do not like guns

More on the LaPierreCare Affordable Gun Act here.

Half-Cocked: What Did You Do To Get Banned?

Half-Cocked: What Did you Do to Get Banned?

President’s Gun Control Order Will Reduce Street Crime

New Gun Control Executive Orders to eliminate corporate jackings. Photo: FoxNews.com

New Gun Control Executive Orders to eliminate corporate jackings. Photo: FoxNews.com

The shooting community was stunned by two Executive Orders from the Obama administration earlier this week.

One of the proclamations effectively closes a secret loophole commonly used by street thugs, gang members, and the Reverend Al Sharpton. Under current law, legally formed corporations and trust officers are able to purchase restricted firearms such as short-barreled shotguns, automatic rifles and sound suppressors. The new Executive Order mandates finger prints, background checks and local law enforcement approval of officers and trustees before these legal entities can apply for special permits from the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives. Although the process is cumbersome, federally controlled and takes 6 to 12 months to complete, administration officials are convinced that low lifes and gang bangers are taking advantage.

“Fo shizzle!” whined one Crips member who declined to be identified. “I was planning a couple of jackings for sometime next spring or summer. I figured I would need to be strapped for that,  so I had my mouthpiece at the law firm of Rutherford, Collingsworth and Davenport drawing me up a Subchapter S Corporation. You need that to begin the application process for restricted firearms ya know. Obviously the benefits of limited financial liability of the partners and flexibility of taxable income distribution will benefit my fellow bangers too. Besides, the Bloods all use Limited Liability Corporations, so we didn’t want to go that route.”

Most gang members we spoke to were still in a state of shock, wondering how they were going to acquire restricted weapons now that the corporate and trust loophole is being closed. Many top 100 law firms are already planning for losses in billable revenue. “Losing thug life business is really going to hurt” moaned Commerce Winthorpe, Esquire, founding partner of the prestigious firm Winthorpe, Winthorpe and Fiddy Cent PeaceOut!, LLC. “We’re definitely going to have to cut back on complimentary mint juleps on Friday afternoons.”

Administration officials expect the measure to eliminate virtually all crime resulting from the loophole. “Today’s street thugs have gotten pretty sophisticated” explained an anonymous official. “They’ll plan a mugging 6-12 months in advance to allow time for setting up a corporation, completing the BATFE application, and waiting for agency approval to get a suppressed double deuce. The days of spontaneous jackings are long gone.”

While insiders won’t comment, many expect the next Executive Order will close the notorious non-profit museum loophole, believed to be the root cause of cannon, flintlock and gatling gun crime.

Half-Cocked: Obama Phones and Holder Guns

Half-Cocked: Obama Phones and Holder Guns

Even A Fart Has Benefits: Dealing With Gun Control Arguments

Even a fart has benefits. Gun debate.

Now that civil debate has gone the way of Sony Walkman cassette players, just remember this:

Even a fart has benefits.

In fact, it’s hard to imagine something that has no benefit whatsoever. Mosquitos? Yeah, they’re part of the food chain and they keep the OFF! Deep Woods people employed. Former Congressman Anthony Weiner? Why he singlehandedly made Twitter interesting for at least a month. And apparently he’s going to be the gift that keeps on giving now that he wants to run for Mayor of New York.

The hysteria over gun control exceeds that of the first nine rows of floor seats at a Justin Bieber concert. (Tweet This)

And its only going to get worse as Congress has (at least temporarily) shelved Hypocrite of Epic Proportion Feinstein’s new gun and magazine ban legislation.

You’ll continue to hear “common sense” arguments, mostly from Piers Morgan, but also from some of the other Mouseketeers on NBC, CBS, ABC, FOX, and CNN.

What you won’t hear, however, is the other side of these “common sense” arguments.

After all, someone smart and famous, like New Boy King Bloomberg once said something like “every action has a reaction.” Or maybe it was Bill Nye the Science Guy.

In any case, things tend to have two sides. Arguments, decisions, discussions, 45 single records and of course, politicians.

In other words, every decision has pros and cons to consider. Drawbacks and benefits.

Like a 45 record (for those of you younger folks, 45 records are kind of like harpsichords) every “common sense” gun control talking point has two sides.

Con: If a gun control measure can save just one life, isn’t it worth it?

Pro: What if some measure saves one life, but results in thousands more being lost? Oh never mind, that’s not a “what if” question. Somewhere north of one million people per year use guns to protect themselves from a violent crime.

Con: Guns killed (fill in the number of your choice) people last year!

Pro: Yeah, but most of them were bad. In fact, numerous studies find that upwards of 75% of gun related murder victims have previous criminal records. Perhaps that ought to be factored into the debate? You can also factor in the previous discussion point here. How many people were saved by using a gun last year?

Con: Guns only have one purpose! To kill people!

Pro: Seriously? Well it’s good to know that police carry guns for the sole purpose of killing people! Obviously this is not the case. But just for discussion’s sake, let’s suppose that’s true. Isn’t it intellectually dishonest to assume that a gun’s only purpose is to kill innocent people? Do you not consider the scenario of a gun killing someone who is trying to kill an innocent person?

Con: You want teachers to be able to carry a guns? What if one goes off???

Pro: Guess what? When teachers with concealed carry permits are disarmed at the front door, bad things DO happen. Can we have a rational discussion that considers evidence of “accidents” or concealed carry permittees suddenly going crazy versus documented uses that stop violent attacks?

We could go on all day about gun control arguments. The important thing is to insist on considering all sides of an issue before forming opinion, and especially policy.

Because everything has at least one benefit.

Even a fart.

A Second Amendment Fairy Tale…

A Second Amendment Fairy Tale

Once upon a time…

In a faraway land called Murrica, there was a great struggle, lasting many days and nights. You see, the settlers of Murrica were tormented by an insatiable and covetous evil troll known as George Threepence. While George lived across the great waters, in the hinterlands, he insisted on taxing the settlers with many fees and regulations. After all, he did not get the name George Threepence for his generosity.

Fed up with overzealous overdraft fees and parking tickets without representation, the villagers of Murrica were desperate to be free of the troll. They called upon a new leader, George Chiseled-Face for help. George Chiseled-Face had a plan. He knew that the good people of Murrica were well schooled in the use of magic kablooey powder and many of them maintained stores of it for their personal protection and other uses.

Without delay, George Chiseled-Face rode throughout the land of Murrica, yelling at the top of his lungs, “Militia! Militia! That means you – all you settlers of Murrica!” And it was in this way, that the people of Murrica had determined to organize themselves into a fighting force to oust George Threepence, the troll. For the people did not trust big armies like George the troll had. They preferred to call themselves up to service and yell “Militia!” with great enthusiasm as needs arose. It was most exhilarating!

Using their wits, a collection of farm animals and copious quantities of magic kablooey powder, the good people of Murrica, led by George Chiseled-Face and many fair and white-wigged princes, fought battle after battle with troll George’s Red Socks, until finally forcing them out at home plate.

Knowing the great responsibility that comes with independence, the settlers of Murrica began referring to themselves as citizens, believing that “serfs” and “settlers” were unbecoming descriptions for freedom-loving Murricans.

One of the first acts of the citizens of Murrica was to write things down on paper. These important ideas and observations were known as The Amendments. Even though the ideas written as The Amendments were thought to be so flipping obvious as not to need writing down, some of the older citizens knew better. Having fought trolls, gnomes and a few goblins in the past, the elder statesmen knew that some future idiot would try to change things because he thought he was really smart. Being very wise, all the citizens agreed on a bunch of Amendments over pizza, chicken wings and 14 gallons of hard cider.

The new citizens of Murrica knew the importance of being able to protect themselves against future trolls – whether said trolls came from across one of the great ponds, or from within. So they made it very clear that, forever and always, citizens of Murrica would maintain their stocks of magic kablooey powder.

This idea was so important to them that they wrote it down second, just after the idea about making sure they could always speak and write things down. This second idea, about keeping other people’s grubby mitts off their magic kablooey powder, came to be known as the Second Amendment.

Many years went by and the citizens of Murrica suffered growing pains, a few wars and the invention of the Shake Weight. But all in all, the Murricans had developed a pretty good system of government.

During this time, most Murrican citizens never forgot the importance of The Amendments, especially the second one. They knew that George Chiseled-Face and his assemblage of white-wigged princes did exceptionally well on the SAT tests and had provided them with wise and timeless governing principles.

Over the years, the industrious Murricans developed many wonderful uses for magic kablooey powder. Like making beautiful light displays in the sky. They learned how to harvest wild animals to make bacon and roast beef using the magical kablooey powder. They even developed sporting contests using magic kablooey powder. While these other activities with magic kablooey powder were interesting and useful, the citizens never forgot the real reason that magic kablooey powder was protected by the Second Amendment. For it had enabled them to gain and maintain their freedom from the penurious and irritable troll, George.

From time to time, a bold gnome or troll would pretend to be a Murrican citizen and try to erase some of The Amendments. Fortunately Murricans were a pretty independent bunch, and TV had not been invented just yet, so they had numerous hours of free time. They paid attention to current events and stopped these trolls and gnomes right in their tracks. During those times, it sure was hard to fool a Murrican citizen.

Years had passed since the last insidious internal troll infiltration, and some citizens has forgotten the importance of The Amendments. And of course, by this time, none of them were alive when Murricans lived under the oppressive troll-thumb of George Threepence. During this time, shows like “I Dream of Jeanie” and “American Idol” were invented and this caused many Murrican citizens to succumb to a trance-like state of unawareness and apathy.

Just then, a charming new boy king was crowned in Murrica’s capitol city of Deesee. While some Murricans were suspicious, many were entranced by his spell and ability to read poems from magical glass screen crystals. He filled his court with all manner of trolls, gnomes, goblins and even a few fairies. And all of them lived high on the pork in the glamorous capitol city of Deesee.

The new king also enjoyed the services of many court jesters who would do and say outrageous things in hopes of getting a few minutes of airtime on XBCNN, the boy king’s personal scribe network.

Alas, the boy king encountered many difficulties as the land of Murrica was in turbulent times. Murrica had maxed out its Capitol One Murrica Card and rather than make minimum payments, the boy king decided to take out payday signature loans.

The bottom line was that the land faced a serious shortage of doubloons – and this caused great consternation. Citizens were lined up like never before at the boy king’s court, demanding lower taxes, jobs and cell phones. Something had to be done! After all, the citizens of Murrica were not happy, and the king remembered that citizens in Murrica had magic kablooey powder. He was concerned that the citizens would revolt, as they did against George Threepence. The king decided to enlist the help of his court jesters to solve the problem.

The boy king’s jesters studied the problem for many suns and moons. They even consulted the Oracle of Soros, but the Oracle of Soros was too busy straddling hedges to be of much help.

Suddenly, the king’s prized magical talking donkey, Joseph, came up with an idea! “Perhaps we could disarm the angry citizens before they get entirely too upset! We could get our sorcerers to cast a spell on our subjects to make them believe that we’re taking control of the magic kablooey powder for their own good and safety! But of course, we will have all the magic powder. This will allow us to do what we think is best for the citizens without interference.”

The king was smart, and also a little bit sneaky, and thought Joseph the magical talking donkey had a wonderful plan.

The king proclaimed “Joseph! Gather all the other asses and implement this plan immediately! I will reward you greatly by allowing you to dine at my table with the minstrels from the western lands of Follywood Forest. They love to visit the royal palace and will entertain us and possibly stroke our egos. Perhaps the minstrels will assist you in your quest by making cheesy public service announcements!”

So Joseph went to work. First, he enlisted the help of some of his must trusted Rose Garden Gnomes. Sir Joe ManlyChin and Prince Patsy TooEasilyInfluenced were chosen to enlist the support of the majority of the Council of Inaction magistrates.  Joseph knew that he could also rely on the magical powers of fossilized bones buried deep in the Council Chambers. Legends bespeak that the bones are the remains of an ancient hobgoblin, Harry the Misleader, believed to be a founding troll of the Council of Inaction. The legends also say Harry’s bones would rattle occasionally during times of great political opportunity.

Joseph realized that not many people would listen to a magical talking ass, and knew that he needed to call upon the most enchanting sorcerers from the Teevee territories. He quickly dispatched his elves to locate them. After following a trail of New York Times clippings and Panera Bread crumbs, the elves found three of the most powerful sorcerers: WereWolf Blitzkrieg from the province of Concoction Narration Network, Boy Prince-in-Waiting Pierpont Morganstern and a sputtering goblin known as LudiChris Matt-P-U.

All had proven microphone-mojo magical powers of hysteria and would be most helpful with Joseph’s quest. Joseph then asked the sorcerers to concoct enchantment fables, potions and mystical moving pictures that would entrance, entertain, and numb the citizens into a perpetual state of blissful unawareness. So they did.

The king had much power, in his own mind, but knew that he would need to enlist the full cooperation of the Council of Inaction. For if the Council of Inaction agreed to the plan, the citizens would certainly not doth protest too much.

The big day of the Council of Inaction vote arrived, and the king, his court and all the Rose Garden Gnomes, trolls, sorcerers and minstrels were most joyful, as the boy king’s plans had never been thwarted.

But little did the king’s court understand that a gallant prince, Robin LaPierre and his band of Merry Riflemen, had been hard at work. Robin and his Merry Riflemen not only had knowledge of the magic kablooey powder, but even more importantly understood the powerful magic of the internet. For the internet had mystical power to shatter the sorcerers enchantment spells and deliver scrolls of truth to the citizens. While many citizens succumbed to the sorcerers moving picture spells, and continued watching reruns of The Bachelorette, a great multitude were able to see through the boy king’s evil plot.

Late in the day, the Council withdrew to the secret chambers to consider the king’s proclamation. Imagine the boy king’s surprise when many of his magistrates on the Council of Inaction defied his instructions! He stormed and stomped and made vile threats of retribution. But the good citizens of Murrica were not afraid. For they knew that with the magic kablooey powder came freedom and independence.

To this very day, the boy king and his trolls, Rose Garden Gnomes and other insidious villains try to thwart the well-being of the citizens of Murrica. But they remain vigilant and sure, thanks to The Second Amendment.

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