On Sunday night I got an email from a reader who I enjoy that read, “How about, ‘Don’t sell assault weapons to 18-year-olds.’ The blood is on your hands (and all the other gun and violence idolaters)!”
While I beg to disagree with him, this is a nation where – right now, this minute -- there are an estimated ONE TRILLION rounds of ammunition and over 300 million firearms. I can promise any and every attempt at gun control is absolutely ridiculous. Further, I can rely on every law enforcement officer in this country and every available statistical source to back up that claim. Anybody who thinks otherwise is sadly oblivious to what is happening in America today.
Further, the “Three Rule” has been statistically documented time and again – three shots fired, from no more than three feet away, in three seconds. The “Three Rule” has three very profound parts. That’s what happened in a Sunday drive-by shooting on Chestnut Street where one was killed and another wounded. There is no way it took any more time than it did to pull the trigger as fast as the shooter could.
A mass shooting, like four people who were shot Sunday in San Antonio? From start to finish – less than 30 seconds. The only way we’ll stop it is to shoot back. This is the only thing that ever worked in the Wild West, the Korean Conflict, South Viet Nam and in the mountains of Afghanistan. You must shoot back. And as Florida sheriff Judd just told us, “Shoot back a whole lot.”
Now, to prove my belief that any and all attempts to corral 300 million firearms is absolutely futile, allow me to share today’s lesson in reality. How would you like to buy a pre-owned firearm this very day? I can take you to one of several street corners in East Chattanooga, or Alton Park, or Orchard Knob, and, with $50 cash, buy you a “used” semi-automatic pistol.
The entire adventure can be done within one hour, give or take 10 minutes on either side. Go ahead, ask any police officer, sheriff’s deputy or Sessions Court judge and they’ll confirm it. Why? They see it happen every day. This is real-world stuff. This is black-on-black shootings. This is happening right now.
But let’s up the ante. Let’s go for what’s called on the street “an evil gun,” something really racy like a combat assault rifle. In Chattanooga, Tn., you can do it –easily -- in less than three days. No background checks. No registration. No driver’s license. No address. No identification. No nothing, the only paperwork is a short stack of “Benjamins” ($100 bills.)
Chattanooga’s “merchants” – who are never shy of inventory -- will sell to 10-year-olds, high school cheerleaders, funeral home directors, and – most importantly – those who take psychotropic drugs on a daily basis but who quit taking their medicines two weeks ago. You see, a “gun free zone” is actually “no rules apply.” Criminals break any rules they want, and to stomp your foot and demand they play fair is so totally ridiculous that anyone who believes in such folly is guilty of enabling it.
My, sellers cannot be stopped. They are at every street corner in poverty neighborhoods. They have heroin, ready available. Marijuana for sale is so easy it is ridiculous. Opioids … as many as you want. Oh, you can’t afford them. No one can. But, brother, they are for sale, as many as you want … unless you would like to consider today’s cheaper alternative – heroin. They even lace “the horse” with a touch of fentanyl. And, hey, it is conveniently packaged for the discerning buyer. Please – this is in Chattanooga, right now, this morning.
It is an easy process to acquire a ‘bad gun.’ You first must realize that anytime any commodity or object is “controlled” or against the law, a market is immediately opened. As long as there is a buyer and a seller for anything under the sun, the market is available and will flourish. We can outlaw guns, and outlaws will buy guns as easily as they can fill a gas tank. That is not just a saying, it is a fact.
The only “rule” in a street buy is “empty chamber.” Never, ever buy a gun that you know may be loaded. It’s bad karma, particularly if the seller knows you have a wad of cash in your pocket. (Hope you get robbed instead of killed.) No, you make sure you can see if – on the weapon for sale -- the clip is out and the slide is back. Don’t worry about bullets – you can buy all you want at Walmart or Sportsman’s Warehouse in the time it takes to walk in and walk out.
Now let’s say you have no contacts. Let’s assume you have no record whatsoever and don’t know any hoodlums. Simple. Jail records and arrest reports are publicly reported every day. You study any list and you’ll find several of the arrested who have weapons charges. Dial 4-1-1 on your cell phone and – presto – you’ll soon get a phone number for guys desperate for money.
You scope out the arrested and soon you can find where they live, the amount of their bonds, where they work, and even their circle of “associates.” Trust me, with all of the Internet resources, a 10-year-old can connect the dots. Just try it -- it’s so easy. I promise, any house wife or truck driver can do this.
Every single person who is ever arrested needs money – cash. Some will sell you their mother. And, no, you can’t trust a one of them – they are criminals. So you deal the cards to their need – cash – and you emphasize you can do a deal within just hours. See how this works? You have a driven and desperate seller. Play to your strength … not his … and the score will be quick.
Once you identify your primary, then you search out an intermediary. Stick with me here. You find a guy on ‘the edge of wicked’ who has had a scrape with the law and doesn’t flinch. He’s your pick-up guy. It is easy to find a steady perimeter guy -- he’ll be happy to pick up “the package” for a fee – what’s $100 to be made with an hour? And the $100 you pay for his role in the middle is a little like life insurance for you.
So now you approach the seller. But, first, you go to Walmart and buy a cheap ready-to-use cell phone for less than $50. This way, since the phone is not registered nor identified, no call can be traced and the number that is shown on the crook’s cell phone might as well be in Chinese.
“A close friend of ours gave me your number and I am looking to do some business. I know you need some quick cash and I need a ‘bad’ gun … I’m thinking you may know where there is an assault weapon for sale. No questions asked, cash on delivery. I got a guy who can meet you. Why don’t you sniff around and see what you can find? See what’s the best price out there … but what I really want is an Annie Honeybee 47, (slang for AK-47) you know…”
Now the game is on. Is it ever. “I’ll call you back and get your best price in a couple of hours. My man can meet you with the money … make sure the gun isn’t loaded, the slide is back, and the clip is out. My guy gets nervous but this way he doesn’t worry.”
“I got some other calls out so we need to hurry … (drop one or two names you found from the arrest report from the week before)”
Call back three hours later … let the bait perk a little. I guarantee you the guy will have found an assault rifle. I’m thinking $500 is a good price but the ‘seller’ will try for $200 more. Don’t bicker too much. Make everything easy. Four hours later you are holding a 49-model Kalashnikov. You instantly grab a short clip of NATO 7.62 and immediately jack the slide, now holding a “five hot.”
You can buy 7.62 NATO rounds anywhere. Best place is gun shows. That’s where you can buy an adapter … just a piece of curiously-bent metal … that can turn your AK into a fully automatic. Just hold the trigger back and the gun will fire continuously. That’s illegal in the United States … but our mass killer could give two petunas and a rip.
So now what? You have an AK-47, as many rounds of ammo as you want and as many blank clips you can
fill, and you sit there until it is time for show business. I don’t know if they hear voices, have an itch, or whatever. All of a sudden something triggers our “lone wolf” to make his move with as much ammunition, lack of warning, and every other misguided motivation that can be brought to bear.
If you believe some senator from Iowa has the answer by banning automatic weapons, or some lawmaker from Oklahoma who demands we enforce “gun free zones” will stop this carnage, you have no conception of the truth. Good guns will stop bad guns. Anything less is an insult to the criminal and a travesty to every victim.
Shoot back at the shooter. Shoot back a lot. Or, prepare to be shot.