The Doors of Illusory Explanation & Mass Shootings

In the wake of the latest school shooting — did I mention that in the 19 weeks of 2018, we’ve had almost one school shooting a week with 16 having occurred? — we’ve had the usual litany of responses:

  • Hearts and prayers and thoughts and wishes,
  • Warm condolences from the Ol’ Pussy Grabber, one presumes,
  • Calls for immediate legislative action to do background checks, pass red flag laws, require gun owners to keep their guns locked up, and other well intentioned recommendations, and
  • The derpy solutions that focus on anything and everything other than guns.

This time the wretchedness of the derpy suggestions seems to be reek a bit more of sour asinine senselessness. It would seem that the Parkland kids have really turned up the heat on cantankerous chattering conservative class.

CrashTestDummies
Gun Safety

Given the sheer number of mass shooting since the inception of Ye Olde Blogge, I’ve written about solutions to gun violence before. Undoubtedly, I’ll write about it again. The solutions aren’t even particularly difficult. So, let’s do something different. Let’s psysplain the effect that red herrings and rabbit holes and empty promises have on the electorate. And, hopefully, we’ll all be able to resist their siren song to inaction.

We’ll focus on the encyclopedia of imbecilic, imprudent, and incautious offal that is being heaved upon us at every opportunity by the Lt. Governor of Texas, Dan Patrick. We’ll focus on his comments during his visit to Jake Tapper’s State of the Union on Sunday’s episode.

We need to — we need our teachers to be armed. We — you know, when you have — when you are facing someone who is an active shooter, the best way to take that shooter down is with a gun.

But even better than that is four or five guns to one.

Illusory Explanation

ParellelIllusion
The Illusory Explanation of Wingnuts

I’ve got one word for you, illusory explanation. You know what happens when you google “illusory explanation”? You get Ye Olde Blogge! That’s right. We’re number one when it comes to obscure search terms!

We hear Dan Patrick uttering this derp in his awe-shucks good ol’ country boy voice — any more that just makes me think of racist pedophile and kinda leaves me feeling creeped out — and think, That’s right, those armed teachers would swarm that evil deranged and not at all representative of his race as long as he’s white but definitely representative of his ethnic group if he’s from one of the browns with their guns blazing and he’d be finished right quick before he could shoot anyone!

We’ve seen it a thousand times on the TV. Matt Dillon, the Rifleman, the lads from Hawaii Five-O, Jack Bauer, and all those might-makes right white guys and the occasional “white” minority and woman always hit their mark. They can shoot the shoulder of the gun arm and disable a shooter at 50 yards! They can shoot ’em in the leg. In the ankle with that super clever under the car trick and leave the bad guy hopping. Man, that’s so funny when they do that. They can even see someone in the curved reflection of one of those chromed trashcans and shoot them from around the corner as their distorted image comes creeping up all evil like. Why wouldn’t a teacher be able to do that to?

Dan Patrick’s God-Feared “Common” Sense

Dan’s even got words for all you liberal haters who hate America and want all her children’s killed by brown immigrants after we disarm are the right-good god-fearing white Christians who will always do good because they are good so everything they do is good, right?

But had teachers been armed — there was a teacher next door, a Marine who saw what was going on, slammed the door, locked his door, protected his students. Some feel, had he been able to carry a gun, he may have been able to stop that shooter, had it been his choice.

If we liberals hadn’t forced that right-good marine next door to leave his concealed carry in his car, why he mighta coulda chosen to shoot that shooter dead instead of locking his door. See, how easy that woulda been? If only those meddling liberals would get outta the way and let Dan Patrick fix everything with his god-fearing common sense.

I mean, he’s a marine. And, none of his training has gotten rusty or been forgotten. Once a marine always a marine, right? A might-makes-right good-guy with a gun will always stop the bad-guy with a gun. We learned that from all those Lethal Weapons movies, right?

The Illusion of Truthiness

Honestly, all snarky, sarcasticky, profaney commentary aside. These things sound great. They are strangely convincing. It’s like they are sung by a saucy seductive siren right into your ear hole only then you remember it is Dan Patrick and then your genitals retract up into your body like landing gear. And that’s what it is designed to do.

FoxNewsGraphic
Fox News Illusory Explanations

The illusion of explanation is designed to offer a thin veneer of truthiness to whatever is being said and leave the listener satisfied with what was said. If all goes well, the listener — that’s you and me — walks away feeling like something has been explained and understood and the solution is well at hand. But, upon closer inspection, it ain’t.

Then you stop and remember this study from that liberal bastion, the RAND Corporation, that said NYC policemen, even the right-good god-fearing conservative white ones, only hit their target 18% of the time when that target was shooting at them! In the chaos of a live firefight, trained police officers are accurate only 18% of the time. And unlike the cartoon bullets in Who Framed Roger Rabbit, the rounds that don’t hit the target have to go somewhere. And, sometimes they go into bystanders wounding and killing them. When there ain’t no one shooting at them (ahem, unarmed black men), they hit at about 30%.

So, Dan Patrick wants you to imagine that a trained school teacher — this is a gun, point this end at the bad guy, pull the trigger — will be able to shoot and kill a live shooter  in a hall crowded with screaming and dying school children. Did you hear those videos from Parkland? What are they going to do, recruit fans of first person shooter games since that’s what most school shooters train with?

Then he’s suggesting that four or five teachers converge on the shooter all firing at once. With a less than 18% hit rate but bullets flying nonetheless, he thinks this is going to work. It ain’t. It is the epitome of illusory explanation.

Cultural dimensions Geert Hoefstede Groupthink Gun regulation Gun safety Gun violence Irving Janis Harlon Carter Henri Tajfel Situationalism
Guns, Politicians, the NRA & Votes

What he really wants is for you to shut up, go away, and curse those liberals who won’t let Dan Patrick arm every teacher in the great state of Texas. He, especially, don’t want you looking at his NRA PAC money.

Would that the good Lt. Governor had ended his derpty-do there, but no, he had other “good” ideas that he thought up with his very own thinking thing and pulled straight out of his ass to the utter amazement of Jake Tapper and his viewing audience.

Here are his infamous “door” comments:

…we need to get down to one or two entrances into our schools. You have the necessary exits for fire, of course. But we have to funnel our students into our schools, so we can put eyes on them….

You know, the Israelis have — have — have three focus on security. And that is to deter, detect and deny. And we have too many people who can get on to our school campuses with guns who are not deterred and are — and are not detected.

Again, this sounds reasonable: if we coulda looked at a kid walking into school wearing a trench coat on a 90°F 88% humidity (NB, I don’t know the weather that day, but I’ve lived in south Texas and in the greater Houston area), then maybe we woulda questioned him. You know like they do at the airport when someone is fidgety about taking their shoes and belt off.

And, now we’re off to the races, ain’t we? Is he really saying that the daily entrance to school should be like passing through the security check a the airport? Is he proposing this as part of his full employment program? That on its surface is just dumb.

He goes on with the dumb:

So, I am proposing that our new school designs are built that way, and we retrofit our schools. The average age of schools in Texas — in America, Jake, are 44 years old. Schools weren’t designed and built 40, 50 years ago to deal with today’s issues.

Does he realize that he’s just said that Texas hasn’t put any money into its schools for forty odd years? Maybe if he were proposing that we beef up our school counseling programs where we can (a) train teachers to be better aware of their student’s mental health needs, (b) provide trained mental health professionals on campus in sufficient numbers to provide appropriate mental health intervention when needed, and (c) have community mental health services that parents can avail themselves of when concerned about their children and don’t know who else to turn to, then we might have DETECTED this poor kid before he acted on his murderous impulses. Then, we might have DETERRED him before he brought his papa’s guns to school. And, then, we might have DENIED him the opportunity to shoot however many people that day.

This is the danger of this cynical use of illusory explanation. Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick knows darn good and well, he ain’t actually proposing any of this shit happen. He knows it is all just a red herring to get the stooges all riled up and arguing while he pockets more NRA PAC money.

He knows he’s created just enough of an illusion of truthiness around his “proposals” so that nothing will actually get done. And, god forbid that we actually do something so stupid as to arm teachers and a god awful bloodbath result during a mass shooting or accidental shooting or a teacher meltdown or a gun left unattended in a bathroom, then it will be the liberals’ fault for not allowing the program to be properly implemented.

 

Inequality
Reaching Across the Political Divide for Solutions

We need to do two things:  First, we need to shred the thin veneer of explanatory illusion and truthiness that coats this derp by being aware that it is derp. We need to point out the flaws in the reasoning and decry the logic that says an armed society is a safe society. An armed society is a fearful society. And second, we need to make all upcoming elections single issue votes on gun reform. These motherfuckers are happy to tie their base and gullible independent voters in knots with this bullshit. The only thing to do is vote on gun reform: either you’re for it or agin it, and if you’re agin it, you ain’t getting a vote. And, if you don’t do it, you don’t get re-elected.

The question is, are we woke enough to do that? Or have we been gaslighted into NRA nirvana?

 

10 comments

  1. Too bad these spokespeople (Politicians, radio hosts, etc.) who advocate an active armed resistance haven’t gone through a course of armed intervention on physical and mental training to deal with bad guys with guns. These courses are about a 5 day week long and are very intensive and then at the end of the course the instructors inform you that this rudimentary training is only the beginning and real life situations are always changing and fluid. These courses in armed intervention are to provide rudimentary skills so the individual being trained can serve under a seasoned combat leader.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Howdy Jerry!

      And, those skills degrade very quickly. They need to be practiced regularly to be improved and maintained. If we can’t even fund our textbooks and regular building maintenance, how are we going to maintain combat ready armed teachers?

      Not only is it an asinine proposal, it is one that keeps from actually addressing the real issue. It is evil incarnate because it is designed to perpetuate the status quo and exploits our natural human instincts and reactions.

      Huzzah!
      Jack

      Like

  2. And then cam another thought:

    “…There’s no right answer to the wrong question. Now what do we do?” ― Ursula K. Le Guin, Always Coming Home

    That is part of the problem with Illusory Explanation, it both arises from and leads others to ask the wrong questions.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Meanwhile, in a growing number of states, those teachers we are told to specially train and arm are striking, demonstrating, and marching on their legislators demanding a salary they can live on, funding for classroom supplies, repairs to UN-maintained schools, smaller class sizes, teacher’s aids, and, yes, more health and mental health services and resources for students and families. Some of them have even been promised maybe 10% or even 25% of what they need when not being accused of being stooges for wicked union bosses and Liberals who hate School Choice (i.e., for profit charter schools and religious indoctrination schools).

    I remember when I took my marksmanship tests in the Army, first with the M-14, and later with the M-16. These tests were done on the rifle range with stationary targets. These were long guns with adjustable sights. If I recall correctly, 70% was a good score. I don’t know what was considered a passing score with a side arm (in those days, the old .45 was standard), because I wasn’t an officer and didn’t get trained with that.

    BTW, there has been a report that the first person that young man in Santa Fe killed was a girl who had rejected his “persistent and aggressive advances” (I.e., sexual harassment). If so, we have another homicidal Incel snowflake, not a victim of bullying, not a poor crazy who suddenly snapped. And, he made sure to kill the Pakistani exchange student, striking a blow, I suppose, for keeping America Great, White, and Christian.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Howdy Bob!

      Meanwhile SCOTUS just struck down labors right to organize to challenge a private employer’s labor law violations. The only saving grace is that publicly employed teachers still can. So, McConnell’s theft of a Supreme Court seat that we, the electorate, let him get away with, pays off handsomely for his Super PAC donors.

      While the polls narrow, this all seems to be coming to a head in the November elections. God, I hope the turnout is breathtaking.

      Huzzah!
      Jack

      Liked by 1 person

      1. With you on that. And I noted that it was the SCOTUS usurper who wrote and read the majority opinion. RBG (may she live forever) gave the dissenting opinion from the bench as only she can.

        Liked by 1 person

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