Tag Archives | mass shootings

Breaking: It All Depends on Whose Ox Is Gored

A recent mass shooting—22 people killed at a Walmart in El Paso by a gunman who left behind an anti-immigration manifesto—has led some to demand that white nationalism be labeled as a terrorist threat to be cracked down on by the federal government. The United States continues to employ a staggering arsenal of armed forces, […]

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Don’t Feed the Trolls

I have taken my time writing about the massacre in Christchurch, New Zealand, in part because I don’t think it’s a good idea to be panicked by rare and unusual events, particularly mass shootings, which are often intended precisely for the purpose of gaining publicity for the shooter’s poorly thought out pet cause. But the […]

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A Giant Effigy of Marx

Five Things You Need to Read Today 1. Jaw-Jaw Is Better Than War-War I recently responded to a claim, reflecting the conventional wisdom of the Trump-era right, that “ideas and persuasion are insufficient” for the pitched culture war we are currently in. This is often expressed in the conviction that scribblers like me are useless […]

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Liberty and Security, Again

Every time there is a school shooting or some other high-profile act of violence involving a gun (this time at a school in Florida), everybody pretends that America has never before bothered to consider the tradeoff between liberty and security—and that we haven’t long ago settled the debate on the side of liberty. There are, […]

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The 72-Hour Rule

After the mass shooting in Las Vegas last night, it’s time to invoke the 72-Hour Rule for shootings and terrorist attacks. The rule is: offer immediate sympathy and aid for the victims and their families—but shut up about the political implications and for crying out loud stop trying to score partisan points for at least […]

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Terror-ism

After posting the previous note, I came across a quote (by way of Megan McArdle) that makes a similar point to the one I was making. It’s a line of verse from Samuel Johnson: How small, of all that human hearts endure That part which laws or kings can cause or cure! That’s not exactly […]

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There Oughta Be a Law

This and the next note will (hopefully) be my last comments on the Newtown massacre. It’s not a subject any of us is eager to dwell upon, and it is elevated into a weeks-long national obsession only because of the political advantage some people are trying to extract from it. I argued recently for putting […]

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