Tuesday, December 2, 2014

Don we now our kevlar armor!

Just so you know, that semiautomatic you
bought at Cabella's is going to do jackshit
against the T-800's hyper-alloy endoskeleton.
Say here's an unsettling thought: Black Friday sales of all the usual crap we Americans usually buy each other for Christmas were down 11% from last year while gun sales were up 12%. This, according to the FBI which counts applications to something called the National Instant Criminal Background Check System in order to get an idea of just how many of us are stocking up on firearms in anticipation of the Rapture or some kind of Robopocalypse. Apparently there were moments on Friday when they were averaging three checks per second. Three. Per second.

Total applications on Black Friday numbered 175,000, which sounds like a lot, but the FBI already processed 18,658,838 background checks so far this year. Oh, and that doesn't include guns sold at gun shows which, because they're on folding tables in a convention center, are technically collectibles. You know, like Beanie Babies or Pokémon cards.
I choose you, Beretta 9mm!
Incidentally, do people who hunt
know they can buy meat in stores now?
Look, I don't really understand gun culture, but isn't that kind of a messed up Christmas gift? Sure, some people hunt and for them a rifle under their Christmas tree isn't any weirder than say a pair of skis or a Vitamix (although a Vitamix won't go off accidentally while you're cleaning it). Fine, but I'm betting that not all of those 175,000 guns sold on Friday were hunting rifles. Some of them had to be of the 'git off my property,' variety. You know, the kind assholes bring to Chipotle?

"Uh, kid? You really don't
want to shake that one..."
Anyway, what I want to know is does anybody really give guns as gifts? And if so, what is their problem? Like, when you get a loved one a sweater or a toaster or something, aren't you doing so with the hope that they'll get some use out of it? What's the expectation when you give someone a handgun? That they'll get to repel a home invasion? Lead some kind of armed insurrection? I mean is there any scenario in which they get to make use of your gift that doesn't end with a SWAT team being called in?

I'm not trying to pick on gun enthusiasts and the bleak, paranoid world in which they live, but seriously, 175,000 guns in one day? I know they like to say that guns don't kill people, but really, they kind of do, so how about a gift card? Or maybe a nice scarf? Ok, a scarf killed Isadora Duncan, but the score is like scarfs: 1, guns: 79,932,123.*
Above: Why the rest of the world fears/laughs at us.
*Yes, I made that number up, but for real, it's a lot.

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