But Kids Shouldn’t Have Access to Guns!

Play stupid games, win stupid prizes:

Henderson, N.C. — A Henderson teenager shot and killed an intruder Thursday morning, according to the Vance County Sheriff’s Office.

When deputies arrived at 586 S. Lynnbank Road, they found a man lying in the yard. Michael Anthony Henderson Jr., 19, had been shot in the chest with a shotgun, deputies said. He was taken to Maria Parham Medical Center where he died.

Deputies did not say which of two people home at the time — teens ages 14 and 17 — pulled the trigger, but no charges are expected against them or their parents.

Police are now looking for the deceased’s accomplice. I wonder if in North Carolina he can be charged with murder, since someone died in the commission of the felony he was helping commit.

From the comments to the story:

According to other news sources, there was a 14 year old son and a 17 year old daughter home at the time. The son shot the intruder to protect his sister.

I’m sure Mr. Henderson was just a misunderstood boy hard at work getting his life on track.  According to this story:

Henderson appears on the Vance County court records system with a firearm charge and numerous driving infractions that had been due for hearings in District Court on Jan. 19 and March 15.

He also carried a record of numerous trespass, assault, affray, bodily injury and property damage charges against him, with offense dates spanning his late teen years including April and July of this year.

Henderson had been given a sentence of 16 hours community service for a Sept. 29, 2009, assault, then months later committed another assault on Feb. 23, 2010, for which he was sentenced to serve 30 days in jail.

Yup.  Choir boy.

UPDATE:  The 911 call.  Yup, the 14 year-old was the shooter.

Here We Go Again

In September of 2009 the website MomLogic posted a piece:  Gun Accidents Kill 500 Kids Each Year.  The gunblogosphere found it in May of 2010, courtesy of Damnum Absque Injuria.  Apparently a couple of propagandists journalists at the Denver Post recently discovered it, and took it as Gospel. Instapundit links to the blog Free Colorado where – professional journalist – Ari Armstrong did to the Denver Post writers what I did to the MomLogic column, only he went directly to the authors of the piece.  (I know I left a detailed comment there, but it’s gone now.)

At least he got a retraction out of the Post. I still haven’t seen Salon retract their much more outrageous “statistic” of 4,000 deaths a year.

And they keep telling us that the professionals have all these layers of editorial oversight, which is what makes them better than bloggers.

I don’t bloody think so.

“OK, That Was Awesome!”

This is what terrifies them – the smile:

Those are screenshots from this CBS News piece about the increasing number of female shooters in the U.S. – up 47% since 2001, according to the piece.  The shooter is CBS’s Katrina Szish, and I suspect that was her first experience with a firearm.

It probably won’t be her last.

That’s the smile you get from a new shooter – Every. Single. Time.

The anti’s are terrified of that – the realization that shooting is fun. Or as the interview subjects put it, exciting, empowering, relaxing.

Also from the piece:

Katrina Szish, CBS: “A lot of people would not expect shooting to be a sport that women would be interested in. And a lot of people would say guns are masculine.”

Lesa Ellanson, NRA certified shooting instructor: “It would depend on how you define femininity. I think a capable woman is the most feminine expression of power that there is.”

Which reminded me of this post from quite a while back. Unfortunately, it’s so old the links are broken, and the comments are gone, but I agree whole-heartedly with another subject of the CBS interview, Jill Kargman:

“I always dress up. I’m very traditional feminine in certain ways. But when I’m shooting a gun, I guess I feel empowered, and empowerment is sexy.”

Damned straight.

“A fábrica está fechada.”

Wretchard riffed recently about the decline in fertility among Western nations in If Tomorrow Comes, with several references to Mark Steyn’s repeated observations about the negative population growth in Europe.  Richard, quoting Steyn, blames it on socialism,

The problem as Steyn succinctly puts it, is that socialism not only “runs out of other people’s money”, as Margaret Thatcher once put it. It simply runs out of people. Future historians, if there are any left, will puzzle over how this came about. The economists will have an easier time explaining it. Through some process, socialism has apparently increased the discount rate to the point where the future is consumed for the sake of the present. Not only is investment taxed to feed consumption, tomorrow is hocked to pay for today.

If the fiscal deficit is the direct monetary expression of this high discount rate, the collapsing population is its equivalent demographic expression. Both are saying the same thing, in different terms. In incentives terms, the future is no longer real; so people don’t save up for it nor do they have any incentive to sacrifice for it.

I don’t think it’s quite that simple.  Take, for example, Brazil.  A recent piece in National Geographic, Brazil’s Girl Power, explores how that nation’s fertility rate dropped precipitously from 6.1 in 1960 to 1.86 in 2009. In Brazil,

where the Roman Catholic Church dominates, abortion is illegal (except in rare cases), and no official government policy has ever promoted birth control

this is a pretty astonishing change over what is essentially just a bit more than two generations. In addition:

And it’s not simply wealthy and professional women who have stopped bearing multiple children in Brazil. There’s a common perception that the countryside and favelas, as Brazilians call urban slums, are still crowded with women having one baby after another—but it isn’t true.

In a working-class neighborhood on the outskirts of Belo Horizonte, an unmarried 18-year-old affectionately watched her toddler son one evening as he roared his toy truck toward us; she loved him very much, the young woman said, but she was finished with childbearing. The expression she used was one I’d heard from Brazilian women before: “A fábrica está fechada.” The factory is closed.

The National Geographic piece concentrates on two primary influences: Television, and culture. Specifically, the effect television has on culture.

An example of the effect:

Encountering women under 35 who’ve already had sterilization surgery is an everyday occurrence in Brazil, and they seem to have no compunctions about discussing it. “I was 18 when the first baby was born—wanted to stop there, but the second came by accident, and I am done,” a 28-year-old crafts shop worker told me in the northeastern city of Recife, as she was showing me how to dance the regional two-step called the forró. She was 26 when she had her tubal ligation, and when I asked why she’d chosen irreversible contraception at such a young age—she’s married, what if she and her husband change their minds?—she reminded me of son number two, the accident. Birth control pills made her fat and sick, she said. And in case I’d missed this part: She was done.

So why two? Why not four? Why not the eight your grandmother had? Always the same answer—”Impossible! Too expensive! Too much work!” With the facial expression, the widened eyes and the startled grin that I came to know well: It’s the 21st century, senhora, are you nuts?

It’s an interesting premise, convincingly presented.  Strongly recommended.

Wretchard concludes his piece:

Imagine there’s no countries.
It isn’t hard to do.
Nothing to kill or die for.
And no religion too.

And then the music stopped. This was the silent scene where we came in at the beginning of the screening: the churches closing at the rate of two a week; the factories closing even faster. What Lennon failed to grasp was that any society that had nothing it would sacrifice for would find nothing worth investing in. And so here we are, dragging on the end of our smokes, tipping over any bottles that still might contain some wine. Because the vineyards are barren and will stay that way. The ultimate problem with “living for today” is that tomorrow eventually comes.

With Brazil, and I suspect most, if not all of the Western world, “living for today” is pretty much the basis of the decline in birthrates. Children? “Impossible! Too expensive! Too much work!”

Not worth the investment. It’s an economic choice, not necessarily a socialist one.

OK, Christmas is Over…

…back to the depressing, pessimistic stuff again. 😉

First, watch this:

[youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wp_RHnQ-jgU?rel=0]

Trust me, if you haven’t seen it, it’s worth your time.

OK?  Now, watch this:

[youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZG7F9G4AEak?feature=player_embedded]

Both are examples of large numbers of people performing coordinated acts. The first is, in a word, beautiful.

The second, frankly, creeps me the hell out.

The first required literally weeks, months, and in the case of the organist, years of practice to make that performance come off. The second? Merely required a bunch of willing minions.

Human beings, for the most part, are herd creatures. We have, as a species, a need to belong to something, to be a member.

It’s something I personally don’t do well. I don’t really grasp it. I’ve been asked several times why, if I like firearms so much, didn’t I join the military? Simple – I wouldn’t fit in, and I know it. Or I would, but I’d hate every second of it, which is essentially the same thing.

I watch hundreds, perhaps a couple thousand people doing what some disembodied voice tells them to do in a public park, and I cannot understand why. Yet I can understand the group performance of the Hallelujah Chorus. One is an exercise in mind-control. The other, an act of beauty.

But at the bottom, they both make use of the human need to belong.

And I cannot help but wonder if that voice had told those “two tribes” to kill each other, if some would not have tried it without thinking…

Grandma Got Indefinitely Detained

From the folks at Reason:

[youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ek1uqrwLmQk?rel=0]

In October of 2008, when I asked Rev. Donald Sensing if he still believed what he wrote in 2003, that:

When my children are my age, they will not be free in any recognizably traditional American meaning of the word. I’d tell them to emigrate, but there’s nowhere left to go. I am left with nauseating near-conviction that I am a member of the last generation in the history of the world that is minimally truly free.

He responded:

The demise of freedom in this country has accelerated even faster than I imagined back in 2003.

The only difference between the outcomes of McCain’s or Obama’s presidency is how quickly they will accelerate the robbery of the people’s rights, not whether they will.

No argument here.

Oh, and I am TJIC. I guess that makes me a domestic terrorist now?