Via The New York Times:
Homemade plastic guns are a reality, made possible by the proliferation of 3-D printing technology that was only getting started when the law was first passed by Congress and signed by President Ronald Reagan in 1988.
The expiring law bans guns that can pass unnoticed through a metal detector, and has been renewed twice in the 25 years since it was first enacted. But with the expiration date a little more than a week away, reauthorizing it has been caught up in a political standoff that has thwarted other recent attempts to enact gun safety legislation.
Here’s the telling bit:
The National Rifle Association, whose position will carry significant weight with many in Congress, has not publicly signaled where it stands. A spokesman for the N.R.A. did not respond to several requests for comment.
The NRA is kind of trapped. On the one hand, their corporate masters would very much like for homemade plastic guns to be made illegal. There is almost no money to be made there and their existence cuts into the profits of the gun industry.
On the other hand, there is no way to square that stance with the NRA’s phony public stance in “defense” of the Second Amendment. They have explicitly stated, over and over, that people need their guns to defend against the evil government and should be allowed to openly carry everywhere at all times. How do you do a 180 and insist that plastic guns are a danger to the public?
That is precisely what the PR boys at the NRA are trying to figure out right now.
I kind of feel bad for right wing gun nuts. Can you imagine going through life so afraid that you need a gun to cling to the same way a child needs a security blanket?
Make no mistake, that’s what this gun craze is: Pure right wing fear. They’re so terrified of the world that the only way they can get through the day is by fondling their guns and imagining killing the “bad guy.” The NRA certainly knows this and is making a fortune by capitalizing on it. Whip up the fear and the suckers will run out and buy more guns! And it’s totally working.
Take these quivering tough guys: America’s Last Flame. It’s post after post of “Look how unafraid I am! I am not scared! I’M NOT SCARED!” Pretty much every picture that doesn’t have a gun in it is about how they’ll fight for their freedom against the evil gub’mint. The rest are declarations of how much they love America, except, you know, for the part where the lawfully elected government needs to be overthrown. A very odd definition of patriotism if you ask me.
But I get the fear. I really do! The conservative movement has had the run of the country for almost 40 years. In that time they gorged on greed, intolerance and unearned privilege. The result is that America is in terrible shape and everyone knows who’s responsible. At the same time, the racial demographics of the country are rapidly moving against the right and the party’s almost over.
Right wing gun nuts aren’t really afraid that the evil gub’mint is coming for them. Or that Mexicans are going to kill them. Or that Negroes are going to rape their women. What they’re really afraid of is that they’ll be treated they way the right has treated everyone else for all this time. They know they’ve literally gotten away with murder for generations and that’s about to all end.
Is it any wonder they’ve been reduced to worshipping guns and dreaming of violent revolution? If they can’t win at the ballot box they’ll threaten to blow up the country if they don’t get their way! Bullying and intimidation have become the Viagra to cure their cultural and electoral impotence. Except it won’t work.
The closer they get to irrelevance, the louder and more frantic they’ll become. At some point, some small percentage of the right, pushed to the edge by years of fear-mongering and marginalization, will resort to terrorism. It’s almost inevitable. Domestic terrorism will be the only outlet left to them. When that happens, it will be ugly and horrible but it will be the death knell of the nightmare that is the modern conservative movement.