Another angry anti-government white guy with a gun. We’ve been through it all before, and we’ll undoubtedly have to go through it again and again because this is what the United States has become. It’s sad, pathetic, and completely fucking stupid — but there it is.
Another angry anti-government white guy with a gun. And yeah, race is a factor. Sure there are angry minorities, and anti-government minorities, and minorities with guns, and even angry anti-govenrment women with guns. And yeah, some of them go to a mall or a school or a fast food restaurant and open fire — but not very often, and when that happens people express shock.
Was anybody terribly shocked that Paul Anthony Ciancia — another angry anti-government white guy with a gun — went to LAX and opened fire? No, not really. I suspect most folks just thought ‘Here we go again.’ I suspect most folks could even make a reasonable guess as to how Ciancia was dressed and armed. Let’s see…angry anti-government white guy with a gun…I’m gonna go with black clothes or camo, a bulletproof vest, some variation on an AR-15, and a buttload of ammunition. And they’d be right.
We all know how this sad, stupid story will play out. There’ll be talk of tightening airport security, conservatives will blame a flawed mental system (while voting to cut funds for mental health systems), some folks might even suggest this is a ‘learning moment’ (but if we learned anything at all from the Sandy Hook massacre, it’s that we never really learn anything at all), and the lunatics at the NRA will raise funds by claiming the president will use this shooting as an excuse to ‘grab our guns’ and violate the rights of law-abiding gun owners.
They’ll ignore the fact that Paul Anthony Ciancia was a law-abiding gun owner until he carried his Smith & Wesson .223-caliber M&P-15 into LAX and started shooting TSA workers. Almost all mass murderers are law-abiding gun owners until they start killing people. By the way, I’ve got a shiny new quarter that says gun dealers are going to be selling a LOT more Smith & Wesson .223-caliber M&P-15s over the next couple of weeks.
The LAX shooting will disappear from the news in a couple of days. Most of us will go on with our lives and not give it another serious thought. But you know who will give it thought? Angry anti-government white guys with guns. We see this as a tragedy — no, not even that, really. We see it as just another in a seemingly interminable cascade of mass shootings. But angry anti-government white guys with guns see it as evidence of a conspiracy directed at angry anti-government white guys with guns — and they’ll get angrier and buy more guns.
Think I’m being pessimistic? Read this story on one of the most popular conservative ‘news’ sources, WND.com: Did TSA Know LAX Attack Coming? It’s conspiracy theory nonsense, but compared to the conspiracy theories posited in the comments, it sounds almost rational. If you have the stomach, read the comments. If you read the comments, the odds are you’ll feel a sense of despair. You’ll feel a sense of despair and you’ll turn away and probably try not to think about it.
And that’s one of the reasons we continue to suffer through these mass shootings. We’ve allowed a handful of angry anti-government white guys with guns to determine our future. They get angry and act, we despair and turn away. Until we get angry and stay angry and act on that anger, they’re always going to win.