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As Long as We Remember...

February 18, 2013

Of meteors, drones, and AR-15s

Steven R. Berryman

Riddle me this, Batman: What do meteors, drones, and AR-15 “assault rifles” have in common? Answer: Obviously they all can kill, but there’s more; the first two can justify the third item.


Also, let’s not confuse “fear” with preparedness; it is not irrational for any citizen to consider the consequences of future possibilities that seem as unlikely as being struck by space debris.


Of course, it’s unlikely to be killed, struck by, or even to witness a falling meteor. You are far more likely to be hit by “blue ice” (frozen waste ejected from jet airplane lavatories) dropped on you from four miles high. There are several pending lawsuits against the airlines based on this rare event.


But history and archeology teach us that over the long course of time, major meteor events have shaped the earth, and have wiped out entire cultures, such as the Clovis people, North American ancestors who once inhabited our lands just 12,000 years ago.


Last week the exploding fireball over the Ural Mountains in Russia injured more than one thousand people. With a calculated force of more than 100 atom bombs, had it exploded lower in the atmosphere, or closer to a major American city, we know that a period of lawless anarchy would prevail. Looting and criminal activity would abound.


Recall the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina in New Orleans, when even the police went bad and turned on their own. Surely there was no 911 service for months.


And having an AR-15, or similar variant of automatic rifle, would provide quite the edge should roving bands of scavengers look for food at your residence. I assure you they would look elsewhere once your gun ownership was known.


And police surveillance drones – or unarmed UAVs (unmanned aerial vehicles) – would not be there to help you in some unlikely post-apocalyptic eventuality. Its advertised purpose is to spy on people.


Some localities, including Charlottesville, Virginia, are already enacting ordnances to preclude their usage. In an Orwellian scenario, some future government-gone-bad could monitor you in real time, without your knowledge and without a court order. Potentially anyone deemed to be a domestic terrorist could be summarily executed from above, as President Barack Obama has ordered already in foreign lands.


The symbolic AR-15 is the emblem of the current gun debate, as for some reason this federal administration is afraid of its own law-abiding citizens. Illegal machine-guns, and fully automatic assault rifles, as in a real “M-16,” have been illegal since the 1930s and the “Tommy Gun.”


There is a reason they want the citizenry to be less well armed. I am suspicious.


Citizens must be allowed to protect themselves from unforeseen eventualities, as we have clear and concrete examples of worst-case scenarios. Law and order can and does break down, certainly, predictably over the uncertain long-haul.


High tech can be used for devious purposes, such as warrantless wiretaps. Drones make eaves-dropping and even killing easy and also allow for cover by a pilot hiding many miles away, who is perhaps more likely to press the button, or pull the trigger on his joy-stick, as he has no fear of retaliation. He is not riding inside the drone!


As a famous patriot once said, when the people fear their own government, that’s bad; when the government fears its own people, that’s good. And we certainly have ample evidence that our current regime proceeds according to its own rules and agenda, circumventing constitutionally prescribed checks and balances, protected by a corrupt two-party system bent on their own well being over yours.


Be prepared. Your natural freedoms are preserved only on a “use ‘em or lose ‘em” basis.


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