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Not Eudora   By Harry Welty
Published June 27, 2003

Sticking to my Guns 

 

I used to kill my friends with impunity as a kid. Sure, theyíd get up right after I shot them and yell, ďYou missed me.Ē But I knew better. My aim was true. Theirsí, however, sucked. They never touched me.

 

Then I grew up and followed the Apostle Paulís admonition to put away the childish things of my youth. I set aside my silver six shooters for politics or, as I like to think of it, making democracy safe for the world. To that end I became a Republican.

 

It has been a little awkward for me to discover that most active Republicans donít consider guns to be childish things. They are, rather, another opportunity to reduce taxes. The hundred thousand laid-off police of recent months are being replaced - for free - by gun toting, law abiding, citizens. (Except for the criminals and mentally incompetent consumers who buy guns before the computer data base on dangerous people is ready)

 

The idea is simple. Criminals wonít know which people to stick-up now that law abiding citizens can carry guns too. Of course, I never really worried about getting held up. Iíve gone 52 years without being mugged. I think I once met a guy who was mugged but I canít remember. The only people Iíve ever known who were negatively impacted by guns were suicides and jealous lovers who whacked their ex-girlfriends.

 

The Republican Party has come to view its Second Amendment rights with great reverence. AfterAmericaís two decade binge in producing cheapo Saturday-night-specials I can understand why self-defense has become so important. It is entirely appropriate that we have been led to the self-defense promised land by Moses himself, Charlton Heston, the increasingly senile past President of the National Rifle Association.

 

I donít know how our nation tottered on through most of the last century without these new found rights to carry concealed weapons. My Dad came home from his naval gun crew in WWII and never showed any interest in owning a gun. The same was true of my motherís father who came home from the First World War with shrapnel in his shoulder. He was content to leave his weapons on the battleground. These earlier generations didnít seem to feel that their Second Amendment rights were being infringed because concealed gun permits werenít being passed out like candy at a parade.

 

Minnesota has now joined over thirty other states in patching up this hole in our constitutional protections. In fact, theMinnesota legislature has done the other states one better. We have made it legal to carry guns in almost every public place imaginable, businesses, government offices, churches. {Please note: Due to what could only have been an oversight the Legislature exempted itself from the protection of armed citizens on the capitol grounds} Now property owners must tell visitors if guns are not permitted on their premises. Minnesotans can no longer presume that weapons are not welcome in places like churches. Apparently we have surrendered some First Amendment rights, for the free exercise of religion, to our Second Amendment right to bear arms.

 

My daughter's wedding is coming up this summer. Because the marriage ceremony is not an official church service we wonít have the right to turn gun toting guests away from the sacrament. This could add some spice to the pause following the ministerís traditional demand, that anyone present who knows why the marriage should not take place should speak up or forever hold their peace.

 

Bad Republican that I am, I printed up my own yard signs banning guns in our familyís home. I placed one at each entrance to my house as required by the newMinnesota law. I did not, however, place them at the correct height or distance from the doors. I suppose that made my signs illegal.

 

After they had been up for several weeks I offered to take them down before my daughterís wedding shower. I didnít want to put a damper on the party.  My wife, knowing the propensity for women at wedding showers to pack heat, told me to leave them up.  Iím glad to report that while my daughter received several very nice gifts there was no gunplay during the shower. The signs were a lifesaver.

 

Unfortunately, someone just stole our signs. We now feel quite vulnerable to attack. In fact, a caller to a local radio talk-show said our signs were an invitation for criminals to rob our house.

 

That was a shock. I guess the Republican legislators had no idea when they crafted their law that they were requiring businesses and churches to advertise their defenselessness for enterprising thieves. Well, just in case there are any bad guys reading this column, they should be forewarned. My signs may have read, ďThe Welty family bans guns on these premises;Ē but what they really meant was, The Welty family bans other peopleís guns on these premises.

 

Welty is a small time politician who lets it all hang out at: www.snowbizz.com