Burch: The 'whiz-dumb' of the NRA

Thursday, January 10, 2013 at 10:05pm
By Michael R. Burch

I believe Tennesseans should carefully consider this small gem of wisdom from the pen of Mark Twain: “It ain’t what you don’t know that gets you into trouble. It’s what you know for sure that just ain’t so.”

It’s bad enough when we adults become the victims of our own irrational assumptions. But when our foolish beliefs lead to the deaths of innocent children, stupidity becomes infanticide.

Here in Tennessee, and throughout the “red” states, millions of people — dare I call them rednecks? — are full of the certain and unquestioned “knowledge” that “guns don’t kill people.” But this “fact” is not supported by the evidence of statistics, which tell an entirely different story: throughout the civilized world, where there are fewer guns, there are far fewer gun-related deaths. So it turns out that guns really do kill people, perhaps in the same way that high levels of lead in paint lead to more poisonings.

The Divine Oscar Wilde once said that the only sin is stupidity. I think we can safely say that 99.9 percent of Americans want to protect children from unnecessary suffering and death. But then it is beyond stupid for us to make it so easy for the deranged .01 percent to get their hands on assault weapons. Letting gun dealers peddle assault weapons and high-capacity ammo clips is like letting home supply companies sell lead-based paints. In both cases, many innocent children are going to die for the sake of a few pennies per share on some company’s bottom line.

So let’s make no bones about it: for the sake of their real God, the Almighty Dollar, the NRA and its political lackeys are going to cause the deaths of large numbers of American children, unless we stop them. Perhaps the NRA and its minions will not be pulling the triggers directly. But if I am selling drugs in your neighborhood, and children start dying of overdoses, am I “innocent” or a huge part of the problem? Obviously, easy access to the wrong things can kill, whether the products are drugs, lead-based paints, or guns and ammo.

Here are some sobering statistics:

A study in the Journal of Trauma and Acute Care Surgery found that the gun murder rate in the U.S. is almost 20 times higher than the next 22 richest and most populous nations combined. Among the world’s 23 wealthiest nations, 80 percent of all gun deaths are American deaths and 87 percent of all children killed by guns are American children.

According to the Children’s Defense Fund, in the 44 years since Bobby Kennedy and Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. were shot to death, bullets have ended the lives of more than one million people. In the civilized world, an extraordinarily high percentage of those deaths were American deaths. Children in Japan, England and 20 other industrialized nations were much, much safer.

The Virginia-based Violence Policy Center ranks Tennessee seventh nationally for the most gun-related deaths, at a rate of 15.03 per 100,000 people. Tennessee’s household gun ownership rate is about 46 percent, the VPC estimates. Hawaii came in last — which in this case means first — with a death rate of 2.82 per 100,000 and a household gun ownership rate of only 9.7 percent.

So in the U.S. and around the civilized world, there is a strong correlation between the ownership of guns per capita, and the rate of gun-related deaths per capita. I’m sure we could find similar relationships between the presence of other deadly items and deaths related to those items: drugs, lead-based paints, asbestos, cars and houses that don’t meet safety standards, etc.

But the dumb whizzes of the NRA and their religion-mad political allies don’t believe in facts, statistics or science. They are people of faith — blind faith. In the past, people like them used the Bible and the Constitution to “prove” that slavery was the will of God and the Founding Fathers.

Now they want to enslave us and endanger our children by forcing us to bow down and worship the Almighty Gun. But people of blind faith were wrong about slavery, witch-hunts and the sacrifice of animals and children to the gods. I, for one, am confident that they are just as wrong about this strange new idolatry.

Michael R. Burch is a Nashville-based editor and publisher of Holocaust poetry and other “things literary” at www.thehypertexts.com.

125 Comments on this post:

By: Loner on 1/13/13 at 8:38

Record warmth in the NE this morning, record cold in California....Has Dargent7's arrival in the Golden State put the meteorological jinx on the place? Darge....come in please....

By: yogiman on 1/13/13 at 8:45

Good morning, children. WOW!, I wish I was as smart as you kids think you are (I say kids because you act like kids so much). I would be one of the smartest guys to be known on this site. I'm amazed you all know more about me than I know about myself. What egos we have on this site.

Damn, if you say it's so, it must be because you say it is. It would be great if you knew the facts instead of your BS.

By: Loner on 1/13/13 at 8:47

Gotta go to church now...but, before I leave, I'd like to add this:


The Empire State triumphed once again....Miss Tennessee was in the finals, but the coonskin cap & buck-skin swimsuit thing didn't work out as planned....PETA objected.

By: parnell3rd on 1/13/13 at 8:48

The propaganda Mike Burch puts out whould make any Nazi proud.
How come you cannot site statistics of how many peoples lives are saved by gun owners?
How come you don't site statistics of other causes ot murder higher than gun related deaths?
How come you cannot site CDC statistics of more children drowning than being killed by guns?
How come you cannot use the Planned Parenthood statistics of 393,000 abortions they performed in 2012?
Why? Because you a hypocrite.

By: parnell3rd on 1/13/13 at 8:50

Ask01 said "remember gun owners you cold have compromised"
Ask01, Will you compromise on your 1st amendment rights? How about your 4th amendment rights? Do you want to give those up?

By: parnell3rd on 1/13/13 at 8:53

gdia gun sales are going up across the nation,not only in your white trash area.

By: parnell3rd on 1/13/13 at 8:56

Loner how is the crime rate in your city? High as normal. Your Mayor bloomberg rushes to judgement all the time. But he does not want to rush to judge people getting pushed in front of trains. He wants to reduce drug supplies in emergency rooms. How will that work if another 9/11 hits your city?
And how come there was not a ban on box cutter's after 9/11?

By: parnell3rd on 1/13/13 at 9:03

Planned parenthood reported 393,000 abortions in 2102 a record year for them. How come you libtards are not upset with this?
Abortion is protected by supreme court. So it is aok to murder a child.
Gun ownership is protected by US Constitution.
So in an abortion who do libtards blame for the death. The Doctor? The Mother? The Father?

By: Rasputin72 on 1/13/13 at 9:06

I have been listening to the opinions of my fellow man since childhood. The majority of the time the opinions seemed to come come from a platform of ignorance.

As an adult whose opinions and instincts have elevated me into the 1% while working and the. One and a half % as a retiree , I am convinced more than ever that the ignorant choose their own lot in life by the opinions that ignorance gives them.

I think it would be academically interesting and enlightening to have a forum where the certified net worth and age must be posted along with the opinion.

By: Ask01 on 1/13/13 at 10:19

Parnell3rd, I am pained to be the one to inform you, but we have, from my perspective, already compromised on most all the amendments.

When one considers the reams of law books and opinions from numerous judges and courts, many suffering from rectal cranial inversion, one can easily see a trail of compromise. It seems there are exemptions and conditions for each and every law, laws which I might add, are derived from the Constitution and attached Amendments.

I merely pointed out, to the chagrin of many it seems, accepting regulating assault weapons and high capacity magazines to avoid more stringent regulations seemed a small issue.

So I repeat, if laws are passed, and individuals must pass a battery of psychological testing, a background check without even a parking ticket, show positive evidence of having an uncrackable gun vault, and must post a million dollar bond in case their weapons are stolen and used in a crime, plus carrying hideously expensive insurance for the same reason, remember, I urged you to compromise. I like guns and target shooting also, but can realize the emotional tide is going to force government to take some action.

Let me toss out a few other possibilities, some fairly outlandish, but still, considering our elected representatives, not beyond the realm of imagination.

They could pass a law making possession of weapons by those under 18 or 21, not a member of the uniformed services a federal crime. That would certainly decimate the NRA Junior membership, wouldn't it? It is illegal for those underage to purchase or possess alcohol or tobacco, and most states restrict the age at which people can drive, ever edging the lower limit toward 18.

I could easily see the ownership of any weapon becoming legal, but possessing or home manufacture the ammunition being illegal.

The congress could, in a fit of whimsy declare the only weapons a citizen is allowed to own to be single shot weapons such as muzzle loaders such as were available when the Constitution was written.

Shall I continue? Much of my rant does border on the unlikely, I admit, but some never thought we would have integrated schools, either.

Compromise, or risk losing it all. Remember, at least one person posting here advocates total confiscation, by force if need be, prying the gun from a cold dead hand.

Have a wonderful day.

By: yogiman on 1/13/13 at 10:27

You must not understand, parnell3rd. It's okay to murder someone as long as it's official... especially if it's a baby that can't fight back to defend themselves.

By: Ask01 on 1/13/13 at 11:23

I do wonder what will happen to Rasputin72 when the Dean adminstration finalizes their almost certain scheme to close the Nashville Rescue Mission.

I cannot fathom the city allowing such a facility to exist within eyesight of their shiny new monument to ego, the MCC. I have little doubt we will read in the near future of plans to relocate the Mission somewhere, anywhere else except where tourists are likely to see the building and it's residents. Once in the suburbs, access to a public library computer will be severely limited.

I am also concerned for Rasputin72's financial security when the next probable step, banning street vendors selling The Contributor within a mile of the MCC. His financial empire will probably crumble to dust. Hopefully, he will not leap in despair from one of the overpasses, impeding rush hour traffic.

Considering the depths of his delusion, perhaps the best way to deal with him is not to address him and enable his descent into permanent madness.

Adieu, Rasputin72, may you receive the psychological help you so desperately need.

By: Rasputin72 on 1/13/13 at 12:53

ASK01.............I take it that you reject the idea of your ignorance.

I am told that acceptance of ignorance is common to many many deplorably ignorant and underclass humans.

Another theory is that constant masturbation leads to intellectual masturbation.

In any case, I still think that a certified net worth addendum to each post would be academically interesting.

I was in the world headquarters of one of Americas largest brokerage houses recently and was told by the President of the company that trying to manage the money of lotterywinners was one of the most difficult rasks that they had. The lottery winners tend to be as unsophisticated as yourself and the other members of the SimpleSix.

I thought that his choice of the word unsophisticated rather than ignorant showed some degree of respect.

By: Captain Nemo on 1/13/13 at 2:07

You are living proof of both theories Raspy old boy. You are deplorable and have mastered the art of self love. Since there is not enough lonely women in the world and none that could ever love you as you do and your four finger and thumb.

By: Captain Nemo on 1/13/13 at 2:29

Ask01, Rasputin was offer help a long ago,but after talking to him self he decided that there was one more qualified to know what is best for and to face facts that he is a failure was something he could not come to grips with.

By: Ask01 on 1/13/13 at 2:55

An excellent observation, Captain Nemo.

His delusions are entertaining at times. I suspect if he was ever where he claims to have been, the circumstances were likely his cleaning the toilets or picking up trash.

At least he, unlike some other trolls, provides some amusement, although his rhetoric is itself becoming somewhat predictable, tiresome, and unworthy of comment.

Have a wonderful evening folks, I have to return to the kitchen. The weekends are the only days I find time to cook and I take every moment seriously.

By: yogiman on 1/13/13 at 2:59

You are constantly criticizing Rasputin72, dumba$$, debauching him every time you "open your mouth".

My God, dumba$$, how smart are you when you can't even write a simple sentence and spell all of the words correctly? Did you even finish the 8th grade in school?

By: Captain Nemo on 1/13/13 at 3:10

He was like these forty 40 years ago Ask01, except he has gotten worse. It must be that he has running out of time and his life is such a failure, that he has resorted to this make believe life style.

He was a sad little boy,and a sadder as a old man.

By: Rasputin72 on 1/13/13 at 3:42

There is nothing better than knowing that you have agitated the class of people who are most responsible for the high taxes and the sorry state of affairs in this country.

NEMO........TPS did nothing to enhance your poor genetics. When the Samoan named you "Rat" he did not do the rodent family any favors.

By: Captain Nemo on 1/13/13 at 4:11

Still fishing old boy. I did not go to TPS and I never knew any Samoan. You must have a half brain like your hero yogi,to keep repeating the same old crap.

It just really get to you that you don't no who I am, but I know of your past and that your present isn't much better.

By: Rasputin72 on 1/13/13 at 5:43

NEMO.......Let us reduce this to a denominator you can understand.

If you are Rat Nemovitz then you definetely had some association with me as your paperboy

If you are not Rat Nemovitz then you have no association with me except thru thid forum.The Nemovitz family was the only totally white trash family on my route.

It could be that I had a a slight association with you when there was a septic tank problem on a farm I had in Nolensville during the 80s. There is no possibility that NES,Nashville Gas or COmcast would have ever hired you.


By: Captain Nemo on 1/13/13 at 5:54

Rasputin you are of the same calibre of stupid as yogi. It was 40yrs ago when we knew each other. You did not have a Paper route at that time.

So what part of no don't you understand?

Septic tank problems ? What did you get that fat head of stuck in the tank.?

By: Rasputin72 on 1/13/13 at 7:06

NEMO ......40 years ago I would not have been within a mile and a half of you physically or mentally.

I find. human vermin like you deplorable and an embarrassment to mankind.

40 years ago the odds of me having any dialogue with you would have to be as you performing some kind of service task for me or my company.

Are you or are you not Rat Nemovitz?

By: Captain Nemo on 1/13/13 at 8:22

How many times do I have to tell that dumb ass mind of yours no! Damn you are dumber than yogi.

40yrs ago you were hustling for penny's.

By: Captain Nemo on 1/13/13 at 8:24

Should have said stealing penny's