was better / is better.
so how do i start? do you ever just remember? like, do you remember back when there were no school shootings? wait. shit. not yet. gotta get back to nostalgia. no more gun stuff. too much already today on guns.
back to my first super cool questch. do you ever just remember? sometimes i do. e.g. i'll be driving down a street in the suburb of my high school youth and i'll drive up a hill. a simple hill. but that hill will spark all these fond memories. like the one of the time i hopped on my bike after lifting the life-size space jam cut out of MJ from the family video while my dickhead pals distracted the pimply attendant and hurriedly rode away and up the hill like a cirque du soleil unicyclist because i lived in fucking mallrats. or else, where i crawled under the saloon-style doors that guarded the porn section (course) while my dickhead friends distracted the stoner attendant because i lived in fucking mallrats. and so i'm driving up this hill for the first time in 12 or 13 years and as i crest the hill i see a stoplight in the near distance and even worse i see a sign announcing that streetlight. what a wild thing. what a wonderful moment. that subtle difference. the stoplight where there once was none. and not only had they had time to install a stoplight since i last skimmed this street. but they had time to learn that the stoplight was problematic and they'd better erect a sign warning people about the stoplight in advance. and what else could possibly have happened on this street these last 12 years? remember that time we scotch taped the whole intersection, stop sign to stop sign, so cars couldn't see the tape, and would drive right through it, and we hid behind the bush laughing hysterically as they paused in the intersection and wondered briefly there? remember that girl whose house was just over the second hill, and how cute you thought she was, and how you dated for what felt like decades, and how you climbed in and out of her window when it was late, and how you both crushed on other people the whole time, cuz you lived in fucking mallrats? and i wonder how my old bandmates are doing. that drummer was always so fucking handy. i bet he's a mechanic somewhere.
i remember like this all the time. but why don't i remember how disappointed my ma was when i got arrested for such fucking with cars? or how the girl cashed in her crush card with a few of those other cute chaps? or how our band was utter goat shit and we constantly go into band fights because of it? because i'm nostalgic. i'm a major sucker for nostalgia. i constantly misremember the past. i puff it up and smile and drive wistfully happy until the the rumble strips start screaming at me to snap the fuck out of my bull shit dazed and confused memory.
but nostalgia. boy. powerful thing, that.
i can't help but wonder just how much nostalgia has shaped society. (which is deliciously ironic if you stop and think about it for a tic. stop. tic. tic. tic. ironic as f, right?) like, e.g.a.gain, jesus. i mean, jesus was super fucking cool: he could have done all sorts of bad shit. but his homies were super nostalgic for their buddy j who was a major player in the natural wine game in judea. soif, eat your heart out. and somehow he still found time to hone his fly fishing craft. obv jesus was one of the best fly fishermen of his time! he was also super into the hospitality industry. and he dressed like a shepherd which is, like, so LA nostalgia btw. and he was always slaying everyone in the ayahuasca circle with his parables. so course they all started writing about him after he died. but their memories of all the jesus stuff spiraled out of control. ends up the guy didn't just make natural wine, he turned fucking water into wine. and he wan't just a good host. he once fed 300 people with 2 fish and 5 loaves of bread. fuck you. oh... did you say fly fisherman? no no. he didn't fish. he was vegan. you misunderstood. he wasn't fishing; he was walking across the water because he wanted to.
and religion was born.
anyway. i haven't much else to say. other than the founding fathers did some terrible things. they owned humans. and only sometimes admitted, in private, how monstrous that was. but hey... remember the revolutionary war when "we" beat the english? remember the declaration of independence? remember the fife and the drum? remember "we the people..."? remember the right to free speech? remember the 3/5 compromi... wait. no no. not that one. but remember the right to bear arms? what glory! what exception! shining and beaming and bright on that hill!
anyway. since the arguments against more gun control fall to pieces when anyone with half an interest in the topic engages on it, the only point gun owners are left to make is that the bill of rights protects their unhindered right to bear arms. no matter how many innocent people die. and so the nra and its minions refuse even to explore the effectiveness of gun control measures against mass shootings.
but why? what kind of crippling fucking nostalgia are we suffering from? are we that incapable of understanding how flawed the founders were? that their work should be updated and repaired. they were a bunch of old white dudes doing their best. and they did a pretty good job. but there's plenty more work to do.
not to mention, wtf kind of amendment is the second one anyway? the only amendment that (1) protects a particular group of people (gun owners) rather than people generally, and (2) provides a reason for its inclusion in the bill of rights in the actual text of the amendment itself. have you ever read the second amendment? here. go for it. right here.
"a well regulated militia, being necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms, shall not be infringed".
(super happy that jefferson was as into lowercase as i am.)
anyway. read it again. "a well regulated militia, being necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms, shall not be infringed." think about that. this says that because a well-regulated militia is necessary to the security of our state, the right of people to bear arms shall not be infringed. does this seem like the blanket grant of a right to bear arms at all times and in all circumstances to all citizens? to me, it seems clear that the framers were thinking about their militias. equivalent to our armies. and the protection of the state against foreign enemies. or, shit, even local enemies. but nowhere does it require individuals to be free to purchase assault rifles.
what if we weren't so damn nostalgic about the men who founded our country? what if we acknowledged the good shit, and admitted the bad shit? i mean: less than 1/3 of this country owns guns. so why are sensible gun policies impossible to pass? i can only assume we too easily succomb to nostalgia about america. about our plenty radical and special and imperfect country. and the bill of rights and the framers and the second amendment all remind us of america. no matter how familiar we are with the text of the amendment itself. or with its history.
this is not the best of all possible scenarios.
was better / is better.