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A good guy or bad guy?

August 9, 2019

In the old westerns, it always was easy to tell the good guys from the bad guys. Those today who grew up on those westerns, and who seem to think they are living in one, overlook that the NRA is telling good guys to act like bad guys. Should you openly carry a gun into Walmart? Yes. The NRA has been successful in modifying American law so that is now legal in many states. Even if it is a high-powered, semi-automatic weapon? Yes. Even if you are decked out in body armor? Well, that might be useful if you are trying to protect the public from a mass shooting. Or, if you are a wacko, making a trial run before doing committing one. Who knows which was the case yesterday in Missouri?

One reason open carry was broadly outlawed for so long in the US was precisely so that people acting like bad guys could be arrested and charged. We have no way to read someone’s mind and tell their intent. But the law can look at visible behavior. Even when imperfect, that still can be useful in shaping the character of public environs.

Update: Dmitriy Andreychenko says he was just demonstrating his 2nd amendment rights, like any good wingnut. Missouri prosecutors are charging him with making terrorist threats. It will be interesting to see if that charge holds. Other than going about armed like a soldier, what was the threat?

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