Tag Archives: firearms

Gun Control and Cartoonists

As most of you should know by now, I am a Canadian. And as a Canadian, I actually know very little about American gun control laws. Yes, I know about the Second Amendment and have been somewhat in the know about the encroaching legislation brought about, more or less, due to the tragedy that befell Sandy Hook Elementary.

I also know about the National Rifle Association, whose job it is, apparently, to make sure that American citizens continue to have the right to bear arms. They also have a lobbying group called the Institute for Legislative Action [ILA]. Wikipedia let me know that members of Congress have ranked the ILA as the most powerful lobbying organization in the US for a few years in a row now.

Now I know what you’re thinking. “Dang, Evan, get to the point already. This doesn’t even have anything to do with comics, which are definitely your forte [and that you probably write about too much].” Well, dear reader, allow me to cut to the chase.

By cartoonist Jimmy Margulies. Also the image that Comics Alliance used, but hey, it’s perfect for the topic.

This morning Comics Alliance released an article titled “14 Editorial Cartoonists Make NRA Blacklist For ‘Endorsing Anti-Gun Positions.’” Its focus was a list that the NRA-ILA had put together of people and organizations who have been known to lend their “name and notoriety to anti-gun causes.” The reason they bring this to attention is that joining the National Black Nurses` Association and actress Catherine Zeta Jones are 14 political cartoonists. Described as being “journalists [who] actively editorialize in favor of gun controls laws” they are as follows:

The links provided for each cartoonist were provided by the article on Comics Alliance, and are super useful. Unfortunately, the link they provided for the NRA-ILA’s blacklist was much less useful. The problem is that the link [which you can check here] does not work, by no means due to the fault of the comics news site. It turns out that whoever runs the site has since taken it down.

But wait, there’s more!

Luckily for me [and, consequently, you], Internet Archive exists. By taking the dead-end link and throwing it into their “Wayback Machine,” I was able to retrieve the list, available for your viewing pleasure:

THE NRA-ILA’S BLACKLIST FOR THOSE WHO HAVE
OFFICIALLY ENDORSED ANTI-GUN POSITIONS

Does anyone else find it disconcerting that a) an organization that is known for promoting the right to tote firearms has a blacklist of any kind, or b) that they’ve since taken down this page due to it receiving media attention?

Since the NRA considers gun ownership to be a civil right they have dubbed themselves the “largest and oldest civil rights organization in the United States.” I’m not at all implying that there’s anything inherently menacing or threatening about their list, I’m questioning their transparency. If there’s nothing wrong with the list, then why take it down? Was it to hide the fact that there could exist a list so ridiculous that it lumps together R&B group Boyz II Men, actor Jerry Seinfeld, Ben & Jerry’s Homemade, Inc.,  and the Washington Post?

I’m not sure why it happened, but I’m letting you know that it did; what you do with this information is entirely up to you. It also has to do with comics on some level, which you know I can’t not write about.

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I Want My M16

Today, we’re going to be talking about guns.

Well, I am going to be talking about guns. I can’t speak to Evan’s convictions on the subject, other than that he favors the needler in Halo. I further understand that the word “Reporters” in our blog’s title may make my post seem like it is using journalism as a facade for promoting personal social and political views à la Fox News.

Your source for interchangeable blonde news anchors since 1996.

Despite this, the simple truth of the matter is that here at CWR, we do hold fairly strong views and don’t shy away from laying them out, be it calling out lousy comic book “artists” to demanding greater coverage of violence by the media. Granted, we have Fame/Shame Day here at CWR to more directly bash what we believe to be wrong with society and laud what we think is being done right, but the purpose of this post really isn’t either of those things. This is simply my own take on a current debate, submitted for your consideration.

Let’s get right to it.

I like guns.

And no, not in the obsessive way where I can tell you how many rounds a Beretta Px4 can hold, or why it’s important that the bullets from one hunting rifle travel marginally faster than those of another. I’ve never hunted anything bigger than a cockroach (which isn’t to say those weren’t some big roaches). I’ve never posted a photo of me and my gun on Facebook.

I don’t even own a gun.

So why do I like them? Why, in the face of all the recent atrocities committed with guns, would I voice any support for the alleged right to own a killing device?

I could spout all the old rhetoric and slogans of the gun-nuts.

If we take away guns, only bad guys will have them!”
Guns won this country’s independence!
“My right to  own a gun protects your right to complain about them!”

In addition to just being used-to-death, the simple truth of the matter is that all of those supposedly “tried-and-true” arguments have some holes in them.  There are countries out there with gun control laws more stringent than the US whose gun-related crimes are nevertheless low. Guns did help win this nation’s freedom, but so did the cannon and the battleship, neither of which could be found hanging above the average colonist’s mantle. And if we’re looking to face the facts, the same guns that supposedly protect my freedom could likewise take it away. Let the facts be faced, the gun owners of this nation are not some courageous bastion standing between me and an intrusive, all-powerful government.

So why support guns?

Because I like having a fighting chance.

Too often these debates get painted as black and white. Both sides point at each other and howl that a victory for their opponents would be on par with the rise of Cthulu.

I, for one, welcome our elder-god overlord…

Take it from any Black/Hispanic/Native American/Jewish/Etc. person living in the 1950s- access to firearms is not a guarantee of freedom, justice, and equality. And take it from someone who actually lived in a brutal dictatorship- a society without guns in no ways guarantees safety and security for you or those you care for. A gun is just a gun. It is not a magical freedom stick forged in angel tears and presented to you by the almighty. It is not an infernal, malicious, conscious beast that turns otherwise good people into psychopaths.

You’re thinking of board games

It is just a machine.

Cars kill people. Cars save people. Speaking for myself, I’d prefer to live in a world with cars. Dogs kill people. Dogs save people. I’d rather in a world with dogs. Hammers make good chairs. Hammers make lousy chairs, and I don’t care that it’s been years since I last used a hammer. For good or ill, I’d like to know that if I wanted to, I could walk into the garage and use one.

Same goes for guns.

They aren’t always safe. They aren’t always good. They don’t always protect me, but I nevertheless like to know that I can try to use them to do that.

It’s just something to consider.

This isn’t meant to offer all or even some of the answers- it’s just an alternate take on the situation I think wouldn’t kill us to discuss.

Think about it.