Florida Gun Law is Perfect Progressivism
The state of Florida, responding to pressure from the leftist news media, leftist protesters, and leftist-indoctrinated teenagers, has passed a law supposedly aimed at preventing school shootings like the one in Parkland. The new law is a perfect example of the progressive ratchet in action: Government causes a problem, then decrees that the only solution to the problem is more government.
Under this new law, people old enough to be two-year veterans of the United States Armed Forces are now banned from owning guns.
Bump stocks, which enhance the rapid-fire ability of certain guns to a level still far below that of military-grade automatic weapons, are now outlawed — even though the Second Amendment was explicitly intended, at the time it was ratified, to ensure precisely that private citizens could and would own military-grade weapons.
And most fascinatingly of all, law enforcement officers are now granted new powers to seize weapons from people “deemed mentally unfit or otherwise a threat.” (How’s that for wiggle room?) In other words, summary gun confiscation is now justified if someone “deems” you “unfit” to possess a firearm.
But what happened in Parkland? A young man, after months of ominous and threatening behavior, reams of warnings and alarms about him from private citizens, and even reports of him actually committing a crime by pointing a gun at someone’s head — all of which went essentially unheeded by the police — finally snapped and shot up his high school. During the shooting, law enforcement officers on the scene failed to act, hiding in safety or refusing to enter the building to confront the killer, unquestionably allowing him to murder and maim many victims who would have been spared had those law enforcement officers simply had the courage and presence of mind to do the job for which they get paid by the people of Florida.
In other words, after all the hand-wringing and breathless “How could this happen?” analysis in the aftermath of this small-town crime, the most basic answer to that question appears to be this: It could happen because the local, state, and federal governments, at the levels responsible for such concerns, were completely derelict in their duty to the community, and royally messed it up, from the FBI phone jockey who responded with slap-worthy “Have a nice day” condescension to a young woman’s remarkably coherent and detailed (and desperate) account of the soon-to-be killer’s increasingly ominous online behavior, to the government agents who were the only legally-armed people on the Parkland school grounds but nevertheless hid outside the building in deadly cowardice to protect themselves — and later lied about where they thought the shots were coming from — while unarmed teachers, volunteers, and boyfriends, hearing the same shots, rushed into the building to try to save lives.
To flesh this out a bit, any rational analysis renders the following synopsis of what happened in Florida last month:
Government policies, instituted over decades, destroy the private family, leaving many mentally or emotionally vulnerable young men growing up without a father in the house to function as moral guide or disciplinary authority.
Government policies, instituted over decades, wrest the responsibility for child-rearing from parents, churches, and communities, and place it firmly in the grip of a progressive authoritarian “school system” that reduces whole generations of young people to assembly line products for the socio-economic machinery, while divesting them of any natural feelings of moral significance or higher purpose beyond serving the state; this process turns the teen years into a hellish pressure cooker of forced acquiescence and conformity to standards of “acceptance” and “belonging” that instill isolated or mentally weak young people with a fear and emptiness that, under the right conditions, is easily transformed into irrational hatred.
Government bureaucracy is built on the premise that only state “experts” know what to do about anything, such that ordinary citizens are to be palliated and ignored, rather than heeded and helped, as a direct result of which crimes that could easily have been prevented are committed merely because state agents refused to take multiple public warnings seriously and act on them.
Governments pack hundreds of young people into buildings in which weapons are forbidden by law, thus leaving those young people as easy and well-known targets for a criminal with a weapon.
Government bureaucrats and policy-makers officially teach young people to submit to threats, to hide and cower before violence, rather than to confront it effectively and collectively in order to overwhelm and subdue it.
Government agents with guns and the express duty of protecting the young people in a school respond to an armed man entering that school by hiding outside to protect themselves, leaving hundreds of unarmed innocents at the mercy of a semi-conscious madman with nothing but mass killing on his mind.
In response to this government-facilitated and -induced carnage, the only reasonable solutions are as obvious as they are unthinkable in our progressive age:
Stop incentivizing and facilitating the disintegration of the family.
Stop forcing whole generations of children into government indoctrination centers, in which life so frequently becomes a living hell relieved only by the mindless gratifications provided by the most cynical “capitalists” history has ever concocted: the drug, violence, and sex dealers of organized crime, social science, and the entertainment industry.
Stop expanding the government into a self-justifying administrative state behemoth answerable to no private citizen, and serving not any genuine public good but only its own endless appetite for bigger budgets and more micromanaging regulatory authority.
Stop trapping hundreds of young people in soft target buildings without any effective means of protecting themselves.
Stop teaching seventeen-year-olds to be meek and cowardly in the face of danger, and to feel and act like helpless children, rather than responsible young adults who are old enough to marry and only one year away from being permitted to vote and join the army.
Stop leaving schools at the disarmed mercy of government law-enforcement officers (and, as per this new law, specially-trained and -approved surrogates of the state) who are obviously as susceptible to cowardly impulses and deficiencies of judgment as anyone else, and who furthermore usually lack the emotional vested interest that leads many people in situations like Parkland to take brave action on behalf of people they know, rather than run and hide as those government officers did.
But instead of emphasizing any of those real solutions, the main focus of Florida’s new law, predictably, is to take more independence and liberty away from private citizens while putting more power in the hands of the State, along with social scientists and other bureaucratic “experts” working as agents of the State. (The latter is the meaning of the provision CNN cagily calls “additional funding for mental health services.”)
This, in a nutshell, is the progressive ratchet: Government creates the conditions for disaster; government facilitates said disaster through inaction and incompetence; government appropriates more power and money for itself in the name of preventing this kind of disaster; repeat.