It was the first movie that I ever saw. Mom, grandma and I were in Carmel, NY and dad was on the road. It was summer and we had rented a little cabin for a week’s getaway from the city. There was one theater in the town with one screen and the movie that was playing that week was the classic, “Annie Get Your Gun.” The film, loosely based on the life of sharpshooter Annie Oakley, starred Betty Hutton and then film idol Howard Keel. I was too young to remember the film but I’ve seen it several times since and find it a charming, musical bit of fluff.
Sadly, today there probably would be little market for a film of this type. To begin with no one was killed in the movie. Worse yet, no cars exploded – because of course there weren’t any in those days – but they might, at the least have detonated a couple of horses. They didn’t. And worst of all was that our heroine was a gun toting sharpshooter who was able to get the best of her male counterparts. Shock. A woman being the champion rather than the victim. That simply doesn’t fit the current narrative.
“I worked out of desperation. I used to hit fast and run in hopes that people wouldn’t realize that I really couldn’t do anything.” – Betty Hutton
If I didn’t know the source of that quote I would have thought that it came out of President Obama’s autobiography.
Under the heading of “Never let a good non-issue die” we have former NYC Mayor Michael Bloomberg now engaged in yet another assault on gun ownership – purportedly to the tune of about $50 MM. That makes the Koch brothers look like small time pikers. Apparently His Eminence is going to direct these funds from his personal treasury to developing anti-NRA ads. This might prove to be yet another instance where in the interest of “doing good” the mayor might prove to benefit those whom he views as the source of all violence in America – legitimate gun owners.
There are a number of our incumbent Democrat senators who ware running against the gale force wind that Obamacare is blowing through the nation and who happen to represent either purple or red states where the electorate has long ago decided that legitimate gun ownership is a fundamental right, guaranteed by the Constitution. The mayor’s efforts to coalesce anti-gun voter sentiment might very well backfire in Louisiana, Alaska and Arkansas, to name a few states. So Bloomberg may be doing the GOP a great favor.
One of the (phony) arguments about guns is that their presence in a home significantly increases the likelihood that domestic violence is more likely to become fatal than if a gun were absent from the premises. But what we have seen over the last twenty years is a significant reduction in the number of fatalities due to firearms at a time when gun ownership has increased dramatically. Notwithstanding the less than riveting revelations that have been forthcoming from the Oscar Pistorius trial, there seems to be little to give credence to that argument.
Are women at risk in our society? Well, I hate to inform the uninformed, but life is a risk and we all drink from the same punchbowl – male and female. I cannot give you an exact figure, but of the women I know, probably at least half of them carry pepper spray in their purses. If they felt secure would there be any reason for them to buy what is clearly a self-defense weapon? Would they be more or less safe if instead of a spray they were armed with a small caliber weapon which they were trained to use, should the need arise?
It’s nice to believe that we can depend on our paid police forces to keep us safe from harm. That is if you don’t live in Detroit where the average response time for an emergency call (when their 911 service even picks up) is currently over an hour and a half. By that time your body has already begun to cool and the murderer is long gone. But Detroit is not an isolated instance where the police are so overwhelmed that they can’t act in an expeditious manner.
Las Vegas’ Metropolitan Police Department recently announced that due to the volume of calls, officers will not be dispatched to the scene of a traffic accident unless there are people who suffer bodily injury. If the police are currently so occupied with more serious issues than car wrecks, what level of safety might the ordinary citizen expect if something really serious, say a power outage, were to occur? In that event were I a store owner, I’d want to have some protection in my shop from the mobs which might seek to take advantage of the situation.
It would be excellent if we could rely on our law enforcement agencies to keep us safe from evildoers – and for the most part they do their best to fulfill their responsibilities and protect us. But in the event of something catastrophic, former Mayor Bloomberg (who has a paid, armed security detail attached to his person) might realize that – “Anything they can do, we the people might do better.”