On the Other Hand...
by Jim Davies
Freedom 6,000, Gun-Control 0
It's distasteful to refer to a human life as a "score", but the gun-grabbing lobby has been doing it for half a century or so, and to counter them one must unfortunately share their tactic. And one fact that stands out from the terrible events of 9/11/01, yet which has been carefully concealed by their friends in the media, is that their efforts contributed heavily to the loss of 6,000 innocent lives.
I might reasonably make that 6,300 - the estimate of total dead at this writing - because if the hijackers knew in advance that a significant number of passengers would be armed with handguns, they would have concluded that it would be impossible to achieve their benighted objective and never made the attempt. So I'm being generous to the gun-grabbers when I assume, in using the lower figure, that they would still have made the attempt, and still would have brought down four aircraft and so killed 266 people. [This was the initial estimate of the mainstream media. Ultimately the total was found to be under 2,800.]
Another article here shows how the 9/11 attacks were provoked by decades of US government foreign policy; had there been none, to favor one foreign group against another, then those attacks would never have been motivated to take place at all. But here, we can see how readily they would have been foiled anyway, if only domestic US policy had adhered to its founding principles of individual freedom and responsibility.
The prohibition of guns makes the victim defenseless. This is perfectly obvious and applies everywhere a thug commits a violent crime. He, the criminal, by definition cares not a fig what the law may say; so if he wants to carry a gun, he certainly will. That gives him a powerful advantage over his victims who wish to obey the law. As so very often with government action, the alleged intent of creating a law (to reduce gun violence) has precisely the opposite effect in practice. That's so obvious, that one wonders whether the true intent of the anti-gun laws is deliberately to favor the thug and terrorize the population, so making us all more dependent on government.
"Troopers", says the b-sticker, "are our best protection." Really? "Best", compared to what? Not compared to a loaded gun, that's for sure; the gun is on the scene at least ten critical minutes before the trooper. Yet the dumbing-down of each rising generation in government school is so effective that the victims themselves pay money to glue such idiocy to their bumpers.
Firing guns at 30,000 feet can be dangerous, no doubt of it. Stray bullets may kill fellow-passengers, pierce the aircraft skin so reducing pressure, or perhaps blow out a window which will decompress the aircraft suddenly. That in turn could suck some nearby passengers out, and endanger all aboard by rapidly lowering the temperature and losing oxygen.
Coffee, Tea or Handgun?
So accidental discharges would unfortunately lead to some loss of life that is not experienced today. Impossible to estimate, but admittedly not zero.
Now let's estimate what would have happened on 9/11 if the lead stewardess had said to each entering passenger "Welcome aboard! Would you care to borrow a loaded handgun for the flight?"
Absent handgun restrictions between home and departure gate, those who wanted one would usually have brought their own, of course; but let's assume that the newly-restored freedom extended only to the body of the aircraft, where the captain is in command on behalf of the airline. Hence the offer of a gun, just as a pair of earphones is offered for loan on many flights.
Let's also assume that only one passenger in four takes up the offer. On a plane with 80 aboard, there are therefore 20 handguns to counter 5 hijackers.
The murderers would have had the huge advantage of surprise, so unhappily their first few victims would have been killed - presumably, shot. Then, the momentum would have passed immediately to the defenders.
The head of each aggressor would have been turned to Swiss cheese before his mouth could intone "Allaaah be Praised!" (Another possible result is illustrated, after I wrote this, by the artist Bieser!)
Might one or more have taken over the controls, before the defenders could recover from the surprise? - yes, that's possible. Then a gunfight would have taken place in the cockpit, and that would have been especially dangerous. But the defenders would have won, with their advantage of sheer numbers.
Having subdued the attackers, the surviving passengers and crew would have had the formidable task of bringing the aircraft safely back to land; and yes, it's quite possible they would have failed. The courageous Mr Beamer and his friends aboard the United flight that came down in PA probably had a comparable struggle - but with bare hands against knives. They never could control the plane, but they did save hundreds of lives on the ground, as President Bush acknowledged in Congress eight days later.
Might it be generally feasible for an aircraft to be saved when all the flight crew is dead? - in fiction, certainly; a brave (and beautiful) hostess knows how to use the radio and is guided how to use the other controls by an expert (and handsome) hero on the ground. Today, a large minority of airline passengers has used Microsoft's "Flight Simulator" on their PCs and so gained a rudimentary knowledge of how to fly an airplane; so it's by no means unlikely that at least one could be found to achieve something similar.
But at worst, they fail: still, 6,000 intended victims on the ground would have continued to enjoy life.
Every one of those 6,000 was killed, therefore, by the gun-grabber lobby and by the Pols who do its bidding. How many more must die, before reason is restored and freedom is regained?
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