Charleston shooting

Rand Paul: Mass Shootings Symbolize a 'Sickness' That Can't Be Fixed by More Government

Comments cater to religious conservatives without supporting a federal role in solutions.

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Psychosis is not contagious.
Credit: Gage Skidmore / photo on flickr

Jesse Walker just noted how President Barack Obama's response to the mass killing of a group of people in a chuch in Charleston, South Carolina—calling for more gun control—is likely not going to get him what he wants.

For the most part, candidates for president in 2016 are keeping their statements short and simple, offering condolences and prayers for the families affected by the violence. The Washington Post has a roundup of responses here. Hillary Clinton joined Obama's call for more gun control, and some candidates have canceled events in South Carolina.

Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) took a little bit of a different tack. Speaking at a luncheon for religious conservatives, Paul actually already pushed back at the "the government must do something about this" type of response. Via Bloomberg:

At the opening luncheon of the Faith & Freedom Coalition's annual Washington, D.C. conference, where he shared the stage with two other Republican presidential contenders, Paul went out of his way to address the massacre that left nine people dead in Charleston after a gunman opened fire in a predominantly black church.

"We had the shooting this morning," he said. The senator, who has been outspoken on the subject of racial violence, suggested that the problem is bigger and deeper than politics and policy.

"What kind of person goes into church and shoots nine people?" Paul  lamented. "There's a sickness in our country. There's something terribly wrong. But it isn't going to be fixed by your government. It's people straying away, it's people not understanding where salvation comes from. I think if we understand that, we'll have better expectations of what to expect from government."

Paul regularly approaches religious conservatives on the campaign with the attitude that there's something wrong or "sick" within American culture that is due to folks turning away from salvation. But unlike conservative busybodies like former Gov. Mike Huckabee or Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.), he doesn't seem as quick to call on more government as the solution to what ails America's morals.

Still, there's little evidence that there's anything resembling a "sickness" in our culture. American society is not getting more violent or dangerous. It's getting less. It's great that Paul isn't pandering to social conservatives who want to use government as a tool against non-believers, but maybe don't even pander to the fears either.

NEXT: Charleston Killer Apprehended, French Citizens Warned About Being Offensive: P.M. Links

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  1. Still, there’s little evidence that there’s anything resembling a “sickness” in our culture.

    I disagree, but I don’t think the “sickness” is people running away from salvation. I think the “sickness” is the fact that people think things like what Obama said about the frequency of these events in the US.

    The sickness is ignorance of the facts.

    1. But “Ignorance is Strength”!

    2. I sometimes wonder if it’s appropriate Obama be President. King of the Fools.

      1. He even thinks America is the Worse than Nicole.

      2. A so he IS King then. He will be pleased with your endorsement. “Now tell me about my Kingdom of which you speak. Is there a throne?”

  2. “What kind of person goes into church and shoots nine people?” Paul lamented. “There’s a sickness in our country.”

    “Dr. Paul misspoke. Obviously he meant to say ‘Our country has some sick people.'”

  3. it’s people not understanding where salvation comes from.

    But Obama’s words were useless.

    1. They were. More than that, actually.

      Next!

    2. Even without subscribing to religious orthodoxy as the source for salvation, it doesn’t seem beyond the pale to suggest that salvation does not come from murdering nine black congregants at a bible study.

      1. Outside of the religious context, it’s a useless statement. “Murder is bad”! Thanks, Rand. I really needed your opinion on the moral standing of murder. Let’s be real: it’s an attempt to show solidarity with the more religious wing of the GOP. Which is fine.

        1. Its funny, but people like to be reminded of basic truths after tragedy.

        2. Or, he actually believes it. Which, from a politician who breaks most of the rules governing how politicians act already, is fairly likely.

      2. it doesn’t seem beyond the pale to suggest that salvation does not come from murdering nine black congregants at a bible study.

        Nor is it beyond the pale to suggest that salvation doesn’t come from government officials in Washington, D.C.

        1. Both of which he said.

          He’s looking more like someone I’d vote for by the day.

    3. They weren’t useless. They were signaling/pandering to people who already support him. Paul’s were signaling/pandering to a different group of people who already support him.

      1. Yeah, Obama does have to get ready for his next election.

        1. Obama is the current standard-bearer and leader of the Democratic party. Of course he has to keep in the good graces of his supporters.

        2. When you state factually incorrect insanity like “This kind of violence doesn’t happen elsewhere, you know” there are actually only two possible outcomes:

          1. Obama actively believes this is the case when ‘this kind of violence’ only happens in the US despite that being historically and factually incorrect simply by looking at mass violence in ‘advanced'(I assume he meant Western) nations. In which case, he’s an idiot.
          2. You’re pandering to a base stupid enough to accept that.

          The only two options you have is fool or panderer. And considering Obama’s constant narcissism and vapid obsession with a legacy, I’m going with the second option.

          1. The only two options you have is fool or panderer.

            It could be both.

          2. Those suicide bombers/terrorists do not come from “colonialist” countries and are therefor given a pass by Obama. And stupid base is a given.

        3. He’s fucking up traffic in my town as we speak. Fundraising for the next election.

    4. Obama’s words were destructive. His words used an isolated tragedy to assault freedom. I wish Obama’s words were meaningless.

    5. Oh look it’s Tony back to spew more bullshit to try and undermine the Second A.

      He doesn’t realize that we know his intentions are the opposite of what he professes them to be.

      You have no credibility on the issue, asshat, but keep it up. The more you fuckers let the mask slip the stronger the opposition to gun control.

  4. “There can’t be a spiritual sickness in our country, because crime used to be worse!”

    Well, maybe the sickness existed back then, too.

    1. Meanwhile, the Eddie in your heads is telling you that only religious people can be moral.

      That Eddie in your heads is a real jerk!

      1. Is that Eddie from Ohio?

        1. Wow, I learn something new every day!

          http://eddiefromohio.com/index.php?page=bio

    2. Viewing human nature as a sickness doesn’t lead anywhere good.

      1. I can’t speak for the Senator, but I think this was a *metaphor* for a spiritual crisis.

        1. The only spiritual crises is that religion is used to make government policy.

          1. Ah, so socialism, progressivism, and environmentalism are religions?

            1. (of course they are!)

            2. Shouldn’t you be off somewhere wearing a cilice as atonement for your carbon related sins? The Pope seems to have commanded that you take environmentalism seriously and accept it in your heart as a moral problem Eddie. Are you mocking or rejecting the statements of your faith’s religious head?

              1. I’ll postpone comment until I’ve read the encyclical.

                What about you?

                1. I don’t need to read shit.

                  The pope is a fucking dirtbag socialist.

                  1. Well, duh. Christianity is pretty much the original Socialist Doctrine.

                    Jesus answered, “The foremost is, ‘HEAR, O ISRAEL! THE LORD OUR GOD IS ONE LORD; AND YOU SHALL LOVE THE LORD YOUR GOD WITH ALL YOUR HEART, AND WITH ALL YOUR SOUL, AND WITH ALL YOUR MIND, AND WITH ALL YOUR STRENGTH.’

                    “The second is this, ‘YOU SHALL LOVE YOUR NEIGHBOR AS YOURSELF.’ There is no other commandment greater than these.”?

                    1. Christianity is pretty much the original Socialist Doctrine.

                      I don’t know how in any way that pertains to who controls the means of production…

                      Now a quick search of the terms “free”, “freedom”, or “rights” in an online Bible will get you many, many verses to make you think otherwise…

                2. Shockingly you don’t actually need to read the whole thing to understand pretty clearly that Francis is discussing environmentalism as a serious moral problem that you, as a Catholic, should take seriously. The opening pretty accurately sums up his argument: humans have horribly damaged the earth through development, we need to do something to fix it and this lines up with Judeo-Christian ethics traditions.

                  Face it Eddie, the Pope is actively in favour of modern environmentalism. You don’t get to make fun of them and be a good Catholic, when they have the morally correct position.

              2. Eddie will be out for the rest of the afternoon buying a Prius, securing his place in heaven.

                1. Are you the one who keeps hanging around my rabbit hutch?

                  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ecWhXP2jM28

        2. Strange that our spiritual crisis has produced historically low murder rates.

    3. Well, maybe the sickness existed back then, too.

      Which would mean…things are getting better…

      moron.

      1. I know you are, but what am I?

        Whoomp, there it is*

        https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=b0YC3RpvE3M

      2. And shockingly that sickness being a constant in human history might negate the claims of an ‘spiritual’ or ‘religious’ individuals claiming to have a cure for it.

  5. Now, let’s see…large numbers of Americans want the government to use force in their behalf to disarm innocent people, to “redistribute” wealth to people the government deem more worthy than the original owners of the wealth, to dictate to small businesses who their employees and customers may be…

    But there’s no spiritual crisis, because the violence is wholesale (by government), not retail (by individuals).

  6. He’s pandering to the audience.

    There’s a “sickness” in human nature that makes some people more fucked up than others. It’s probably has some biological or evolutionary purpose. Some cultures find ways to suppress or channel these impulses better than others.

    Almost all of these mass shooters have histories of psychiatric disorders and are on meds. Not suggesting we need to institutionalize them or refuse the sale of guns to those with “histories”. I honestly don’t know what the solutions is, but it isn’t disarming the rest of the country or forced religious conversion.

    1. Good thing Sen. Paul opposes both.

      1. No shit.

    2. The solution certainly isn’t giving them a .45 for their birthday. WTF!

      1. I have a suspicion that the giver wasn’t all that much more well adjusted than the receiver.

    3. As true as that is, it seems like white supremacist culture was at minimum responsible for which targets he picked for his homicidal lunacy, and was very possibly a factor in pushing him over the edge from crazy to violent crazy. That’s a cultural sickness rather than a personal one (especially if, as some have speculated, he learned it from his parents).

      Of course, it isn’t really prevalent in the broader culture, so it falls into the “let’s teach men not to rape” category of idiocy. If you waste as much time trying to teach Salon-reading, privilege-checking white men not to be white supremacists as you do skinheads, because hey, vicious racism is a white problem, then you’re probably spreading yourself too thin to achieve anything (and insulting white people who hate racism while you’re at it).

    4. What makes you think it has biologic purpose? Complex human behaviors like this, while they have effects on life (extinguishing it in this case), are pretty obviously determined by thought, not life processes.

    5. Often the crazies just want to kill people. But they sort of know you’re not allowed to do that without a reason. So then they shop for a reason.

      Maybe its grammar like the gabbie giffords shooter, or some crazy ecological deal, or communism, or maybe its white supremacy.

      They just want a justification.

    6. Why is it that most of these guys that are mass shooters are men in their late teens to early twenties? Hmmmmm…. Maybe it’s because that’s when psychotic disorders start to manifest themselves. Schizophrenia is the classic one. This kid was schizophrenic. THAT’s the illness that is in our society. And it’s in every society.

  7. Paul regularly approaches religious conservatives on the campaign with the attitude that there’s something wrong or “sick” within American culture

    It’s an effort at framing. Paul is the only doctor running in this election (unless Bill Frist or Howard Dean jump into the race) and therefore he is the perfect person to elect in a sick nation.

    1. I don’t think so – given this quote from his speech (from the Bloomberg link):

      “Can government be the be-all end-all? The reason I ask is that I meet with pastors, and they’re looking at government for the answers. I look back at them and I say, ‘I’m looking at you for help.'”

    2. Supposedly Dr. Carson is too, but much as I admire the guy, I don’t think he’s got the temperament to be president.

      1. I did forget about Carson. But he is one of umpteen thousand GOP candidates, so I think I can be forgiven.

        Speaking of the insanely packed GOP field, it does strike me as an indication that the perception is Hillary is easily beaten in a general.

        1. I wasn’t calling you out. My thought was the fact that he IS forgettable (as a candidate) is a good thing.

  8. I welcome Paul’s comments even if I’m not religious at all. Politicians of the blue variety tend to rise up and offer bad state involved solutions that won’t prevent these sorts of shootings (or the more mundane kind).

    As a libertarian, I enjoy hearing a politician say that the solution to something has nothing to do with government.

    1. “I enjoy hearing a politician say that the solution to something has nothing to do with government.”

      That brings joy all by itself, yes, but since he references “where salvation comes from,” expect him to be relentlessly mocked by the left for not having a plan and being an “anti-science” backward fundamentalist who thinks prayer is the only solution to our problems.

      1. Obama will make reference to faith, too.

    2. I think you nailed it. There’s nothing wrong with pointing out that something might be a moral, rather than a political problem. To say that maybe the best answer to psychotic racists shooting up Bible study classes might be for people to pay closer attention to the injunction from nearly all religions to treat others with kindness decency and humanity, rather than have the government take away still more of our rights is something libertarians ought to be cheering.

  9. Rand Paul is being savvy in catering to social conservatives and the religious right. I remember people got bent out of shape when he alluded to gay marriage being part of a moral crisis in America. He might even believe this but it’s practically irrelevant. He could just go up and say, “Look, the government has no right to grant contracts two one group of consenting adults and arbitrarily deny them to others, so like it or not gay marriage is a go” and lose an enormous part of the GOP voter base who are ideologically blind to this truth. But if he couches it in this language of acknowledging their belief in a moral crisis while also decrying government overreach and connecting it to other issues that they support (like fighting gun control) then he can get a large number of them and still advance a policy of liberty (I’m not sure if this is his plan vis a vis gay marriage, but I’m optimistic).

    1. If he’s lying to SoCons to get votes, how do you know he isn’t lying to *you* about his support for freedom?

      1. “No, he’s too dreamy to care about those SoCon bitches…it’s my socially liberal left-libertarianism that he *really* loves…he’s just flirting with the SoCons now, but he’ll come back to me, I just know it.”

      2. Because there’s no point in trying to get libertarians on your side. We’re way too small a demographic to target.

        1. “He only makes eyes at those SoCons because he has to, but once he no longer needs those bitches, he’ll invite me to go to the prom with him!”

      3. Or, here’s a novel thought, he can be honest about both.

        I think the Vanity Fair cover with Bruce Jenner on it is symptomatic of a contemporary society that raises all manner of sexual perversion and bona fide mental health issues up as some righteous campaign of teh awesome. But I also don’t believe that the govt should have any role in preventing Vanity Fair from publishing dumb covers that seek to normalize the clinically insane nor do I think Bruce Jenner should be prevented from wearing lingerie and installing breasts.

        You are free to do whatever you want that doesn’t infringe another’s rights to the same. You are not free from criticism from the dwindling armies of the sane merely because you think you are special. I can cite a hundred other things that people should be allowed to do that I find abhorrent.

        1. There you go, I hope you run for President yourself!

        2. Or, here’s a novel thought, he can be honest about both.

          Correct.

          I have too many “God-fearing Christian” friends who get offended when I tell them all they want to do is substitute their rules for the progs’. “America needs to get back to God and God’s laws blah blah blah gay marriage blah blah blah drugs blah blah blah strayed from the path of righteousnes blah blah blah back to the Bible blah blah blah?”

          Paul’s saying, “Look, I get where you’re coming from and I may or may not agree, but you can’t use the government to force people to do what YOU want, either. Don’t come back to me and say I told you I’d carry your water for you because I won’t.”

          Not his fault if (per Notorious G.K.C.) they delude themselves that he declared his undying devotion then left in the morning without so much as a kiss.

          1. Ya been took!

            Ya been hoodwinked!

            Bamboozled!

            Led astray!

            Run amok!

            1. Oh, but _I_ can change him. He loves ME. not all those other bitches.

        3. Well put Sudden.

          Libertarianism is about principles and applying them uniformly. It is not a team sport, but I can afford to stay pure because I am not running for office.

          Anyway, using the word salvation was definitely a wink-wink to the religious crowd, but he may not have necessarily been using it the way they think. Even if he was, so what? I don’t haver a religious test for candidates, but I do have a second amendment test for them and he passes.

        4. Ah yes, the morals of the nation have been in decline since the Roman Senate failed.

          More like, too many people have always been suckers for the sensational & there have always been people willing to make a living by feeding the sensational to them.

        5. Dwindling Armies of the Sane. That may be the name of my next band.

      4. Maybe he is but what have I got to lose.

        Anyway, I think “lying” is too strong of a word. I’m saying he is acknowledging their moral beliefs while slowly (re)introducing the idea that more government power isn’t going to solve the perceived problems. Unless he’s actually come out and said he’ll never legalize gay marriage at the federal level, but I’ve never heard that.

        Incidentally this corresponds with my views on abortion *ducks*. That is, I’m morally opposed to it but politically ambivalent. I don’t believe that voting to ban abortion would solve anything because I think its vast support is indicative of a moral crisis and people’s moral support has to change rather than the government’s use of force.

        1. I’ll avoid the temptation, except to say that morally and legally, the government no more has the option of legalizing abortion than it has the option of legalizing lynching.

          1. It has no more the option of criminalizing abortion than it does criminalizing the slaughter of animals.

            1. Don’t forget infanticide.

              1. Hell yeah.

      5. Your painting me as a doe-eyed naif, Eddie, when in reality I’m just being a cautiously-optimistic pragmatist. I’m not blind to Rand’s inequities but it’s fucking Washington politics we’re talking about. The bar is in the goddamned basement.

        1. I can’t quarrel with you there.

          1. I can. The bar is not the basement. The bar was long ago melted in the Earth’s liquified magma core.

      6. SoCons are a shrinking, easily led pack of mostly pretty ignorant sheep and they are disliked by the rest of the country. The positions they champion are political poison and they have lost the war of ideas. That’s why you need to give them stealth dog whistles: they have no friends so they will latch onto anyone giving them a funny wink. The stealth part is to avoid alienating the normal people.

        1. Bear in mind that “normal people” support protected-class status for gay people by even greater margins than they support same-sex marriage. No being normal isn’t all it’s cracked up to be.

          And I’d like to see evidence that the “normals” actually want the government to subsidize single motherhood or adopt “common sense regulation of gun violence” – to cite a couple of government policies disproportionately opposed by SoCons.

          1. Oh, and another cause disproportionately supported by So Cons – school choice.

            Good luck relying on the “normals” to achieve that for you.

            1. The Libertarian challenge is to manipulate and play-off these groups against each other to get what we want. Gay marriage, guns, and school choice.

              1. I can’t argue with the conclusions you draw from your premises. That’s how every political group operates.

                But I hope you’ll be a bit more welcoming to SoCons as you work on matters of common interest – guns, school choice, limits on initiative-dulling welfare payments…

                For instance, you might want to put on a suit and tie and avoid saying stuff like “you ignorant sheep, I’m trying to manipulate you into working with me on this issue – what say you?”

                1. The left-libertarian approach sometimes strikes me as saying, “yes’ we’re for school choice and gun rights, we don’t want welfare to blunt individual initiative, we don’t want small businesses forced to serve customers or employees against their consciences…but we hold these positions for totally different reasons that you nasty, filthy SoCons, who are a threat to all that’s good and decent, so don’t even think of allying with us!”

                  1. I am no left-libertarian.

                    I don’t want SoCons as allies. I only want them to support our positions and support us.

                2. At this point I expect obeisance to libertarians from the rest of the right. You failed spectacularly during the Bush years. You need us more than we need you. Every single one of your doomster predictions regarding gay marriage or any other social advance has been laughably wrong. Every. Friggin’. Time.

                  Honestly I’m not sure it is worth the effort to work with conservatives. Too many of them really are as stupid as the left makes them out to be. They are easily led and don’t really like freedom. The issues where they agree with libertarians get put on the backburner in favor of border walls and keeping homos from marrying.

                  1. Really?

                    There was just a mass shooting, and the President basically admitted he couldn’t exploit the situation to get gun-control adopted. Who do you think is blocking these laws in the political arena – the Pink Pistols?

                    The school-choice laws that are being repeatedly adopted in state after state – do you think the SoCons were sitting on the sidelines, saying “oh, thank goodness the libertarians got those laws passed for us?”

                    The legal battle in favor of freedom of association for businesses – you think there’s any connection to the SoCons there?

                    1. (And not all conservatives are SoCons.)

                    2. Guns: that’s a big alliance encompassing a wide range of groups. Can’t really attribute the whole success to any one.

                      Schools: the SoCons are where again? They sure aren’t in NYC and New Orleans where school choice is or has made the most advances. Isn’t Kansas chock o block with SoCons? Doesn’t that state have a constitution mandating state education?

                      “The legal battle in favor of freedom of association for businesses” is something SoCons only give a shit about when it comes to baking cakes for gays getting married. I wonder why that is.

                    3. “the SoCons are where again? They sure aren’t in NYC and New Orleans where school choice is or has made the most advances.”

                      New Orleans was blessed with a destructive hurricane which destroyed the schools. So if every city could have a hurricane like that, then there would be no need for SoCons!

                      New York City has done some good work with charter schools, and in the absence of evidence to the contrary I’ll assume SoCons weren’t involved.

                      Kansas is a mixed bag: “Kansas has one private school choice program (tax-credit scholarships). The state has a limited charter school law. Kansas enables public virtual schooling. Limited open enrollment exists, only for interdistrict public school choice.”

                      So if Kansas is chock o block with SoCons, don’t they get to claim some of the credit?

                      http://www.edchoice.org/School…..te/KS.aspx

                      I’ve linked to this school-choice map without knowing whether it favors SoCon or non-SoCon states.

                      https://schoolchoiceweek.com/press/media-center

                      Bear in mind that the choice coalition includes SoCons, populations hurt by the current school system (eg, African-Americans), even some reformist liberals. Every little bit helps.

                    4. “The legal battle in favor of freedom of association for businesses” is something SoCons only give a shit about when it comes to baking cakes for gays getting married. I wonder why that is.”

                      Let’s consider the pure and principled motivations of the dope-legalization crowd.

                      Sincerely, you’re looking a gift horse in the mouth.

                    5. “Kansas is a mixed bag: “Kansas has one private school choice program (tax-credit scholarships). The state has a limited charter school law. Kansas enables public virtual schooling. Limited open enrollment exists, only for interdistrict public school choice.”

                      I’ve lived in the state for almost a third of my life and I’d describe it as populist more than anything. You have hardcore progs, fiscally liberal socons, and fiscally moderate socons. The few principled fiscal conservatives tend to be browbeaten into silence because the liberals are so loud and stupid. The republicans are intellectually useless because they tend to be the country club variety or the religious and economically illiterate variety. But they are more prevalent, so it remains a red state. It’s far from principled, though.

                      That said, Cytotoxic doesn’t know what he’s talking about as far as socons and education goes. They were at the forefront of the modern homeschooling movement.

                    6. “Kansas is a mixed bag: “Kansas has one private school choice program (tax-credit scholarships). The state has a limited charter school law. Kansas enables public virtual schooling. Limited open enrollment exists, only for interdistrict public school choice.”

                      I’ve lived in the state for almost a third of my life and I’d describe it as populist more than anything. You have hardcore progs, fiscally liberal socons, and fiscally moderate socons. The few principled fiscal conservatives tend to be browbeaten into silence because the liberals are so loud and stupid. The republicans are intellectually useless because they tend to be the country club variety or the religious and economically illiterate variety. But they are more prevalent, so it remains a red state. It’s far from principled, though.

                      That said, Cytotoxic doesn’t know what he’s talking about as far as socons and education goes. They were at the forefront of the modern homeschooling movement.

                    7. dammit the squirrels have been singling me out lately

      7. Judge a man by his actions more than by his words.

    2. He said what I would have said (and actually believe). There’s a good chance he actually believes it.

  10. Boy it’s going to be a long week of politicians pandering to bases…have we got anyone blaming violent video games yet?

    1. If people were informing themselves through watching the news (Fox excluded) instead of mindlessly playing CandyCrush…

    2. have we got anyone blaming violent video games yet?

      Not yet, but earlier today I had to resist the temptation to tear a TV off the wall in the break room at work when some asshole (think it may have Morris Dees) was on CNN bloviating about how supposedly the shooter had said something about “taking back the country” and that’s the same phrase that a lot of RETHUGLIKKKANZ use, so this is obviously the result of EVUL RIGHT WING RHETORIC.

  11. Commentariat: vote for Rand Paul please. Vote for him in the primary. Do what you have to do to get him in there.

    1. All else aside, Rand Paul is too short to be president. We remain apes, after all.

      1. But if he’s running against a woman, his shortness won’t matter right?

        1. Apparently Hillary is 5’7″ and Rand is 5’8″. I think that high heels could be a deciding factor in this race.

          1. The good news is Rand would look good in 4 inch stilettos.

            1. RULE 34 ACTIVATED

      2. “We remain apes, after all.”
        -Warty

        “Ape always pick strongest branch.”
        -Caesar, king of the apes

        “When people see a strong horse and a weak horse, by nature, they will like the strong horse.”
        -Osama bin Laden

        On the other hand, there have been plenty of short dictators, so…?

      3. We remain apes, after all.

        What is this “we” shit?

        1. Well, I’m sorry, there’s not a good word for sexy lady ape. Lemurs have pretty tails, though. Would that work?

          1. We all do the best we can with what we got

          2. Lemurs are prosimians, not apes, but yes, they are more attractive and better behaved. Sort of telling, really.

      4. Apes don’t read philosophy.

        1. Yes, we do, we just don’t understand it.

        2. Apes don’t read philosophy, They wright it!

      5. But he’s got good hair that that helps cancel out his lack of height.

    2. Do what you have to do to get him in there.

      DOJ presses “record”

      1. Are we talking about wood chippers again?

      2. Record button is redundant, we are always recording-NSA

    3. Do what you have to do to get him in there.

      Phrasing.

      1. Sorry, that is my conservative hawkish side talking…I have a lot of sides though. *puts tinfoil hat back on and screams out the window at the raindrops

    4. This. I really wish I was American so I could vote for him.

      1. I really wished I was British so I could vote for Nigel Farage.

      2. Vote for him anyway.

        You won’t be the only one.

  12. Still, there’s little evidence that there’s anything resembling a “sickness” in our culture. American society is not getting more violent or dangerous. It’s getting less.

    But it won’t be a perfect place until we can corral all those wayward guns who pounce on people like Puppet Masters and compel them to kill, like Tony suggested only a few posts ago.

  13. Jesse Walker just noted how President Barack Obama’s response to the mass killing of a group of people in a chuch in Charleston, South Carolina?calling for more gun control?is likely not going to get him what he wants.

    Especially because people with guns ?all 200 million of them? must hate black church goers.

    Oh, mark my words ?the little red Marxians WILL forward that argument. Trust me.

  14. Speaking of sicknesses

    Federal law prohibits people with pending felony charges from obtaining firearms. In February, Roof was arrested and later charged with felony possession of Suboxone, a narcotic prescription drug. He was released, and the case is pending.

    Because of his criminal record, Roof would not have been able to buy a gun from a store. Federally licensed gun dealers are required to run background checks on gun purchasers, and Roof’s pending charges should have turned up as a red flag.

    But Roof didn’t need to go to a dealership. According to his uncle, Roof received a .45-caliber pistol from his father in April for his birthday, Reuters reports.

    That damn GUN SHOW LOOPHOLE strikes again! Private citizens should never be allowed to conduct transactions beyond the all seeing eye of Big Brother.

  15. Speaking of vacuous platitudes

    In a speech clocking in at just over half an hour, Clinton started out by offering her thoughts and prayers to the nine victims murdered in one of the oldest black churches in the South. She then addressed what she called a need to end gun violence.

    “How many people do we need to see cut down before we act?” Clinton asked. “In order to make sense of it, we have to be honest. We have to face hard truths about race, violence, guns and division.”

    What about introversion? We must round up all the introverts!

    1. We have to face hard truths about race, violence, guns and division.

      In other words: “I use race and guns to promote division in hopes it will lead to violence and help my campaign.”

    2. cut down? incoming ban scissors or is that saws? screw it. ban them both. that will make us all safer.

  16. It’s people straying away, it’s people not understanding where salvation comes from.

    So the difference between President Clinton and President Paul would be that Clinton blames mass shootings on me because I’m a gun owner and Paul blames mass shootings on me because I’m an atheist.

    1. I’m sure you’ll be a disingenuous prick under either as president.

      Oh another difference: Clinton will take your guns, Rand won’t force Christianity on you.

      1. No she won’t. Aside from legal protections preventing her from doing so, taking away guns would mean she would have one less wedge issue to use in her reelection campaign. She would never do something like that.

        1. If any president were capable of breaching those legal protections, even a little, it would be Hillary.

  17. “Still, there’s little evidence that there’s anything resembling a “sickness” in our culture.”

    Really? Frustration and resentment permeate our culture and this comment-board. Everyone has a “those people” to blame for their anxious, unhealthy, unhappy condition.

    1. I think most people here just blame Nicole for their anxious, unhealthy, unhappy condition.

  18. OT: in the other thread there was mention of ‘no-go zones’ in Europe where immigrants have settled and supposedly turned the area in Escape From New York. This is an urban myth concocted by Daniel Pipes. He has recanted his tale.

    http://www.bloomberg.com/news/…..-zone-myth

    Can we please leave the fact-free xenophobic hysteria for Breitbart and the conservative blogosphere please?

    1. Tell that guy who dressed up like a Jew and tried visiting various places in France.

      1. A little boy was shocked at his appearance in his neighbourhood, he reports. ‘What is he doing here Mommy?’ he asked. ‘Doesn’t he know he will be killed?’

        Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/new…..z3dSaYTtlW

        1. Yeah, because France’s anti-semitism is totally a Muslim thing and not at all a French thing.

    2. Cabrini green in Chicago was a ‘no go’ zone. Ambulances didn’t want to go there because as first responders they would be shot at from the 18th floor as they drove up. There’s documentation of random bullet fire over 2 decades. I’m sure if you say this now you’ll be called a racist, but it’s the truth and well documented.

  19. “Still, there’s little evidence that there’s anything resembling a “sickness” in our culture.”

    Clearly this particular individual had some sort of “sickness”, and there are others out there that commit similar acts whose behaviour could also be described as a “sickness” without abusing the metaphor too badly. Of course such cases are rare, but rare doesn’t it mean “doesn’t exist”.

    1. I think he was referring to a cultural “sickness”, not an individual mental “sickness”.

  20. “Still, there’s little evidence that there’s anything resembling a ‘sickness’ in our culture. American society is not getting more violent or dangerous. It’s getting less.”

    I believe Rand was going for a “sickness of the human condition” angle to appeal to Christians per the “salvation” comment to follow.

    Crime is down over the past generation due to a complex array of incentives, but that doesn’t change the reality that people are basically souped-up chimpanzees neurologically prone to aggression and the occasional act of physical violence, the consequences of which weigh pretty heavily in the nasty conundrum we call the human condition.

    1. Also, bear in mind the violence people approve behind the cover of the ballot box by approving, for example, forcible redistribution of income, bullying businesses, bombing the shit out of foreigners, etc.

      Just because people are less likely to commit violence on the *retail* level, where they risk accountability, doesn’t mean they aren’t willing to promote violence on the *wholesale* level when they can’t be held accountable.

  21. I’m glad my church (a small one in an inner ring suburb of a big city, with a multicultural congregation) does not have a sign stating “blank blank church bans guns on these premises”. I assure you that some of us do bear arms, and that is a comfort.

    1. “And now we sing Hymn #45:”

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ht7mxF9XZiA

    2. Depends. Better be familiar with your state laws. Mine, for example, makes guns in church illegal unless the church has a policy stating they allow them. Key word here is “policy”. Must be a resolution, a vote and stated in church Council minutes. Otherwise, regardless whether the church cared a whit, you’re a felon.

      1. Something something 6-10 something something 6 feet under.

      2. That’s also the way it is in South Carolina. (Yes, another mass killing in a “gun-free” zone. Note how the media’s been all over that, right?)

        Texas says I can carry unless the church posts a 30.06 sign, and I haven’t seen one that does.

      3. I’ll look into it. I’m the chair of the church council, so it shouldn’t be too hard to get it into the policy docs. Thanks for the tip.

    3. Some of us bear hands, but don’t go to church whilst bearing a grudge.

  22. No way that will fly. It’s not an easy answer, and he didn’t come up with any scapegoats apart from “culture”. Do what the lefties do and blame society.

    1. Seems to me that blaming “culture” and blaming “society” are pretty much the same thing.

      1. No, “culture” means everyone but god fearin’ conservatives, and “society” means everyone but goodthinking (what is right jargon term? intersectional? antiproblematic?) progressives.

  23. Speaking about scapegoats, we need to round up all these quiet loners I keep reading about and isolate them from the properly socialized people they prey upon.

  24. you make $27h…good for you! I make up to $85h working from home. My story is that I quit working at shoprite to work online and with a little effort I easily bring in around $45h to $85h?heres a good example of what I’m doing.
    BEST HOME BASE PROFIT DEAL??????? http://WWW.TIMES-REPORT.COM

  25. Did we make it to the bottom of this thread without anyone bringing up Disturbed? Whee!

  26. “Still, there’s little evidence that there’s anything resembling a “sickness” in our culture. American society is not getting more violent or dangerous. It’s getting less. ”

    I see increasing government control. Seems pretty sick to me.

  27. mass shootings are the price we pay for freedom. They’ll happen as long as we have 2A rights, there’s always someone crazy out there. But no politician will ever have the balls to say it

    1. They’ll happen as long as we have 2A rights

      They would happen regardless. If all law-abiding were disarmed, there would be more. If all non-police/military were disarmed (somehow), there would still be mass shootings (Wounded Knee comes to mind).

  28. sorry Rand old buddy, but the only solution is more government. Something needs to be banned here…that will fix everything.

  29. sorry Rand old buddy, but the only solution is more government. Something needs to be banned here…that will fix everything.

  30. “What kind of person goes into [a black] church and shoots nine [black] people?” Paul lamented. “There’s a sickness in our country. There’s something terribly wrong.”

    The church is the one place African-Americans can find sanctuary from a hostile society. Someone who hates black people will go to that sanctuary and kill them. The sickness in our culture is racial hatred and an environment which facilitates violently acting out on that hatred.

  31. Sounds like a great opportunity for government to… fee-line its pockets.

  32. The fact that the culture isn’t getting more violent isn’t a good measure of its health. A terminally ill patient may not be violent but lethargic, as in our culture, where honest debate is becoming impossible. If the Catholic Church, for example, opposes the “right” of women to choose to use their money to fund their abortions, advocates of a publicly funded abortion service have the gall to call that opposition (which they certainly have a right to) an (illegitimate) attempt to restrict access to (probably the most distorted term imaginable) “reproductive health” services, Whatever happened to “between a woman and her doctor?”

    The culture is being hollowed out and Dylan Roof is, if anything at all, a hollow man: a kind of wraith, a vacuum that sucks in a swirling storm. The eyes are horrific to look at. A victim’s relative, through tears, forgave him. It is unlikely to do anyone good except she who did the forgiving. Dostoevsky’s burglar might have been haunted by the memory of being forgiven by the woman he killed but not this… thing. The difference between those two worlds is an indication of this culture’s sickness. And the descent is escalating rapidly.

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