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Last night, Jon Stewart devoted his show to talk about guns and gun control.

If some common sense firearms regulations might cut the number of these killings, why not try?
MARICOPA COUNTY SHERIFF JOE ARPAIO (1/7/2013): We have many, many laws pertaining to guns already, we oughta enforce those laws.

MAN AT GUN SHOW (1/7/2013): We already have laws banning murder, but we still have murders.

JESSE VENTURA (9/17/2012): Drunk driving.  Do we go to the Ford Motor Company and tell them, stop making these automobiles because people get drunk and kill people in cars?

No, but we do enact stricter blood alcohol limits, raise the drinking age, ramp up enforcement penalties, charge bartenders for serving drunks, and launch huge public awareness campaigns to stigmatize the dangerous behavior in question, and we do all those things because it might just help bring drunk driving rates down — I don't know — by 2/3s in a few decades.

(wild audience cheering and applause)

....

How about we keep all the guns except weapons designed purely to efficiently shred enemy soldiers?

NRA PRESIDENT DAVID KEENE (12/23/2012): We had an assault weapons — so-called assault weapons ban for 10 years. ... The Justice Department and others who studied it said it made no difference.

CLAYTON MORRIS (12/24/2012): That original assault weapons ban was ill-conceived and didn't work properly.

Well, you know what they say.  "If at first you don't succeed, fuck it!"

Again, none of these will ever be perfect.  We're not looking for some magic... flying solving projectile.  We're looking for a series of steps from different areas that over time can improve the situation.  As opposed to what we have now, which is legislative riders snuck into appropriation bills that prevent the ATF from inspecting gun dealers' inventories, and bills that make it harder to put disturbed individuals on "do not buy" lists, and laws exempting gun makers from any legal accountability for their product.

I mean, for... people, God forbid, McDonald's doesn't tell you how hot their hot steaming coffee is!  That happens, and you're taking the money train to McPunitive Damage Town.

....

Here's the problem.  Technology has democratized carnage.  And it's very weird to me that gun enthusiasts won't even entertain — let me amend that — some gun enthusiasts won't even entertain the idea of common sense law enforcement supported small-bore, so to speak, moves to try and rein in this violence.

What's really going on here?

REP. RICHARD HUDSON, R-NC (1/6/2013): We have a Constitutional freedom... the right to keep and bear arms in this country.
Yeah, yeah, for a well-regulated militia.  Not a personal arsenal free-for-all.  There's all sorts of stuff you can't have already: tanks, F-16 fighter jets, surface-to-air anything.  When that Constitution was written, people had muskets.  So, OK.  You can have all the muskets you want.  You can even have assault muskets for all I care.  Jazz it up with a bayonet, go fucking nuts.

But why is it that there is no other issue in this country with as dire public safety consequences as this, that we are unable to make even the most basic steps towards putting together a complex plan of action to slow this epidemic's spread?  What is really going on here?

STEVE DOOCY (1/7/2013): I think you, like a lot of people, Joshua, are worried that the federal government's going to come after our guns.
Now we're gettin' somewhere.  So this really isn't about the Constitution, or efficacy of regulation, or intruder defense; it's about how perilously close some people in this country feel they're living to a tyrant's rule.
JOSHUA BOSTON (1/7/2013): It's something we've seen happen time and time again in history — with Stalin, happened in Cambodia, and then of course, the Third Reich.  No one saw that coming until it was too late.

ALEX JONES (1/7/2013): Hitler took the guns, Stalin took the guns, Mao took the guns, Fidel Castro took the guns, Hugo Chavez took the guns!  And I am here to tell you, 1776 WILL COMMENCE AGAIN IF YOU TRY TO TAKE OUR FIREARMS!!!

(shocked and nervous audience laughter)

Holy shit!

No one's taking away all the guns.  But now I get it.  Now I see what's happening.  So this is what it is.  Their paranoid fear of a possible dystopic future prevents us from addressing our actual dystopic present.  We can't even begin to address 30,000 gun deaths that are actually, in reality, happening in this country every year, because a few of us must remain vigilant against the rise of imaginary Hitler.

Video and full transcript of the second segment below the fold.

We've learned in our conversation about this country's staggering number of gun-related deaths that it's based on a surprising amount of non-gun factors — God, media, and crazy people.

Wow, God, media, and crazy people.  That's a pretty busy graphic.  Can we streamline that, and yet also represent all three constituencies?

There you go.  All right.  I'm going to go out on a limb here, and say that this conversation is taking place between parties of good faith, and that all of us, on any side of the debate, are anti-massacre.  If some common sense firearms regulations might cut the number of these killings, why not try?

MARICOPA COUNTY SHERIFF JOE ARPAIO (1/7/2013): We have many, many laws pertaining to guns already, we oughta enforce those laws.

MAN AT GUN SHOW (1/7/2013): We already have laws banning murder, but we still have murders.

JESSE VENTURA (9/17/2012): Drunk driving.  Do we go to the Ford Motor Company and tell them, stop making these automobiles because people get drunk and kill people in cars?

No, but we do enact stricter blood alcohol limits, raise the drinking age, ramp up enforcement penalties, charge bartenders for serving drunks, and launch huge public awareness campaigns to stigmatize the dangerous behavior in question, and we do all those things because it might just help bring drunk driving rates down — I don't know — by 2/3s in a few decades.

(wild audience cheering and applause)

So, if we stop calling Senate votes during happy hour, that number gets even lower.

Like magazine sizes.  Smaller magazines for guns.  Make these crazy people have to reload more.

SEN. LINDSEY GRAHAM, R-SC (12/23/2012): Changing a magazine, I can do that pretty quick.
Yeah, but you're Fast Fingers Graham, the foremost gun enthusiast/speed origami champion in the world!

He made that in three seconds.  How he uses his heavily calloused gun hands to make such delicate paper art — why, it's a mystery.

All right, magazine restrictions won't help.  How about we keep all the guns except weapons designed purely to efficiently shred enemy soldiers?

NRA PRESIDENT DAVID KEENE (12/23/2012): We had an assault weapons — so-called assault weapons ban for 10 years. ... The Justice Department and others who studied it said it made no difference.

CLAYTON MORRIS (12/24/2012): That original assault weapons ban was ill-conceived and didn't work properly.

Well, you know what they say.  "If at first you don't succeed, fuck it!"

Again, none of these will ever be perfect.  We're not looking for some magic... flying solving projectile.  We're looking for a series of steps from different areas that over time can improve the situation.  As opposed to what we have now, which is legislative riders snuck into appropriation bills that prevent the ATF from inspecting gun dealers' inventories, and bills that make it harder to put disturbed individuals on "do not buy" lists, and laws exempting gun makers from any legal accountability for their product.

I mean, for... people, God forbid, McDonald's doesn't tell you how hot their hot steaming coffee is!  That happens, and you're taking the money train to McPunitive Damage Town.  But an epidemic of gun violence?  "Oh!  We can't!  Our hands are tied!  We can't do anything!"

We are a nation of overreactors to everything!  We have step-by-step childproofed this entire country.  20 years ago, a guy threw a rock over an overpass, and it hit a car windshield.  And now, every overpass in the country's like a habit trail, it's just got a giant 13-people thing!  Football stadiums have giant nets behind the goalposts so you don't get hit by the ball you're supposed to be watching!

We can't do anything about this?  How about we make assault rifles available, but only at shooting ranges?  Make guns less sexy so they won't be considered so cool by young people?  The next Jason Bourne movie stars Woody Allen, how about that?

(in Woody Allen voice) "I'm not really a gun person.  It's not so much the killing, but the loading and the cleaning.  It's just... it's a lot of work."

Or even better, creative sound editing to take away the cool gun factor.

(compilation of clips from Reservoir Dogs with silly sounds replacing gunfire)

See?  Those silly sound effects completely dulled my desire to get caught in a violent and bloody 3-way Mexican standoff.

And if you don't like any of those solutions, please, we'd love to hear yours.  There are no bad ideas.

REP. LOUIE GOHMERT, R-TX (1/4/2013): I refuse to play the game of assault weapon because that... that's any weapon.  It's a hammer, it's... article came out this week... the massive number that are killed with hammers....
(shocked audience laughter)

OK... uh, if you want to regulate... hammers, we could try that.  Would it be possible also to regulate bags of hammers, or anyone as dumb as that?

But aside from hammer control, which by the way, was a great M.C. Hammer album....

Do you have any other ideas for reducing gun violence?

NRA CEO WAYNE LAPIERRE (12/21/2012): The only thing that stops a bad guy with a gun is a good guy with a gun.
So the school principal with a gun is going to stop a guy with an assault rifle and a bulletproof vest.  You know, I don't think Principal Belding is as badass as you think he might be.

Here's the problem.  Technology has democratized carnage.  And it's very weird to me that gun enthusiasts won't even entertain — let me amend that — some gun enthusiasts won't even entertain the idea of common sense law enforcement supported small-bore, so to speak, moves to try and rein in this violence.

What's really going on here?

REP. RICHARD HUDSON, R-NC (1/6/2013): We have a Constitutional freedom... the right to keep and bear arms in this country.
Yeah, yeah, for a well-regulated militia.  Not a personal arsenal free-for-all.  There's all sorts of stuff you can't have already: tanks, F-16 fighter jets, surface-to-air anything.  When that Constitution was written, people had muskets.  So, OK.  You can have all the muskets you want.  You can even have assault muskets for all I care.  Jazz it up with a bayonet, go fucking nuts.

But why is it that there is no other issue in this country with as dire public safety consequences as this, that we are unable to make even the most basic steps towards putting together a complex plan of action to slow this epidemic's spread?  What is really going on here?

STEVE DOOCY (1/7/2013): I think you, like a lot of people, Joshua, are worried that the federal government's going to come after our guns.
Now we're gettin' somewhere.  So this really isn't about the Constitution, or efficacy of regulation, or intruder defense; it's about how perilously close some people in this country feel they're living to a tyrant's rule.
JOSHUA BOSTON (1/7/2013): It's something we've seen happen time and time again in history — with Stalin, happened in Cambodia, and then of course, the Third Reich.  No one saw that coming until it was too late.

ALEX JONES (1/7/2013): Hitler took the guns, Stalin took the guns, Mao took the guns, Fidel Castro took the guns, Hugo Chavez took the guns!  And I am here to tell you, 1776 WILL COMMENCE AGAIN IF YOU TRY TO TAKE OUR FIREARMS!!!

(shocked and nervous audience laughter)

Holy shit!

No one's taking away all the guns.  But now I get it.  Now I see what's happening.  So this is what it is.  Their paranoid fear of a possible dystopic future prevents us from addressing our actual dystopic present.  We can't even begin to address 30,000 gun deaths that are actually, in reality, happening in this country every year, because a few of us must remain vigilant against the rise of imaginary Hitler.

We'll be right back.

Meanwhile, after noting the price of the Forever stamp is going up by a penny, Stephen had another Cheating Death segment on anger and aging.
Stephen also talked about the controversy over torture in the new film Zero Dark Thirty.
Jon interviewed former Gen. Stanley McChrystal, which went long.  Here's the entire unedited interview in three parts.
Part 1
Part 2
Part 3

Stephen had on Minnesota Vikings punter (and UCLA grad) Chris Kluwe, who's been in the news for his outspoken views promoting gay rights.

BTW, in last night's interviews, both McChrystal and Kluwe also talked about the need for some kind of gun control in the U.S.  You can see from Kluwe's Twitter feed what his proposed solutions were.

Originally posted to BruinKid on Wed Jan 09, 2013 at 05:00 AM PST.

Also republished by Repeal or Amend the Second Amendment (RASA), Shut Down the NRA, and Electronic America: Progressives Film, music & Arts Group.

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