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The Most Farcical Conservertarian Reaction To Newtown: The Competition Ends Prematurely


We’ve had some strong early entries: Glenn Reynolds, “let us cite William Burroughs as an authority on the dangers of gun control”; Ann Althouse, “let us speculate about how Nancy Lanza conspired to help her son murder kindergartners, perhaps with Jose Padilla’s terrorist blinking acting as a go-between”; and let us nor forget Eugene Volokh, “an armed-to-the-teeth kindergarten classroom is a safe classroom.”

Megan McArdle, however, decided to obliterate the field:

I’d also like us to encourage people to gang rush shooters, rather than following their instincts to hide; if we drilled it into young people that the correct thing to do is for everyone to instantly run at the guy with the gun, these sorts of mass shootings would be less deadly, because even a guy with a very powerful weapon can be brought down by 8-12 unarmed bodies piling on him at once. Would it work? Would people do it? I have no idea; all I can say is that both these things would be more effective than banning rifles with pistol grips.

I…what the hell? Wait — it gets better!

But I doubt we’re going to tell people to gang rush mass shooters, because that would involve admitting that there is no mental health service or “reasonable gun control” which is going to prevent all of these attacks. Which is to say, admitting that we have no box big enough to completely contain evil.

Yes. Clearly the only practical problem with telling unarmed people to rush at people firing semiautomatic weapons rather than running away is that we would have to admit that gun control cannot entirely stop evil but merely substantially contain it.


Unless I am missing a very subtle parody of libertarianism, McArdle’s plan to teach children to launch banzai charges against mass murderers is the single worst solution to any problem I have ever seen offered in a major publication.

He understates, but close enough.

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