A Cautionary Tale

My neighbor Wayne L. is a stalwart member of our neighborhood-watch group and when he invited me over for a brewski the other day I asked him what he thought about the recent spate of mass-shootings. Now Wane is no shrinking violet and a strong supporter of the 2nd Amendment, so I knew he would have a strong opinion about it. I, admittedly looking to liven up a rather boring day, wasn’t disappointed. 

“Well Jim,” he said, “you know it’s the same old story. Neither one of them two teachers was packing heat. If you don’t prepare to defend yourself ahead of time, and that means plenty of ammo too, then they are gonna get you before the law can get there.” 

“Uh, who are ‘they’, Wayne? “Why, you know,” he said. “It’s a dog-eat-dog world out here. Our vital juices are under attack from all sides, and what makes it worse is that you can’t trust the libs to protect us. Nine times out ten, the cops are usually out-gunned and are gonna arrive too late to help. 

I told Wayne I was glad he was on our side and not the other. 

“I wouldn’t get too comfortable, Jim. You may not be aware that the danger is getting worse all the time. Bad guys are attacking in mobs now, rioters and illegals alike. Even the feds come in teams, you know. I think it’s about time we expand our thinking about self defense to include more than just guns. You know the 2nd says ‘arms’ and that obviously means more than just guns. Personally, I think it’s time for the PRPG. Made that name up myself,” he said proudly. “It’s the Personal Rocket Propelled Grenade. It would be smaller than the Army version, no need yet to be armor-piercing. Probably not much more expensive than an AR, I’m guessing.” 

“Sounds dangerous,” I said.

“No, Jim, not if you follow NRA guidance. You know, just the basics, tell the family not to stand behind you when you fire and make sure not to shoot, er, fire, at too close a target. The PRPG would fill the range gap when a pickup full of murderous illegals or an SUV full of controlling feds is coming at you full speed. There just wouldn’t be time to pick ‘em off with your trusty AR.” 

“Well, Wayne, I don’t have an AR, but I’ll take your word for it,” I said.

“Wouldn’t be such a problem if the feds hadn’t banned machine guns and even bump-stocks,” he said, “but that’s the libs for you. The libs are running the show now. Only a couple years to go . . .”

About Jim Wheeler

U. S. Naval Academy, BS, Engineering, 1959; Naval line officer and submariner, 1959 -1981, Commander, USN; The George Washington U., MSA, Management Eng.; Aerospace Engineer, 1981-1999; Resident Gadfly, 1999 - present. Political affiliation: Democratic.
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22 Responses to A Cautionary Tale

  1. SusanR says:

    If only our forefathers had known about today’s weapons …


  2. This guy sounds like a mental doppelganger of Brigadier General Jack D. Ripper in Dr. Strangelove. Did he talk about the “Communist conspiracy to sap and impurify all of our precious bodily fluids?” Although he no doubt would have said liberals instead of commies. These guys are scary. Better not say anything about the 2020 election.


  3. Jim Wheeler says:

    Here, another of my heroes of the past, Studs Terkel, reads a Mike Royko column.


  4. Satire has a way of describing the world. Long live The Onion.


  5. I didn’t either, Jim. I thought Wayne L. was just another lunatic. And really, if you disregard the words “well regulated” and read the 2nd to say that “arms” should not be regulated, then how do you reconcile that with saying he can’t have a howitzer or a PRPG?


    • Jim Wheeler says:

      Just so, Helen! How nice to hear from you again. It’s been a while since I posted, I know. Incidentally, I had a conversation with a person in the newspaper business yesterday that convinced me to withdraw my LTE to the local paper. They said that the “readership” is not the same as it used to be and that that opinions on topics like this have become terribly serious. There is no humor or tolerance left. I had visions of bullet holes in my front walls. I’m no coward but I have a responsibility to my wife.


  6. Daniel Digby says:

    I was surprised so few readers recognized your neighbor. I’ve always preferred Col. Erran Morad (not a Mossad agent) and his common sense approach to simple problems like mass shootings. I have to agree with him that arming teachers is stupid unless you’re willing to also pay them a police salary. While Wayne L.’s ideas about providing every classroom with bulletproof whiteboards or tapestries would certainly have prevented any deaths at Uvalde, Morad’s solution is so much simpler.


  7. Jim Wheeler says:

    FWIW, a short article in The Atlantic offers a clear argument for interpreting the first part of the 2nd Amendment, i.e., explaining . . . the root constitutional problem—that insufficient regulation of guns impairs the liberties of all.

    Liked by 1 person

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