|from the s.f. gate
||[Oct. 24th, 2003|10:28 am]
A little lucidity would not go amiss
Now is the time. The National Rifle Association is the group. Their weird,paranoia-thick blacklist of thousands of famous names is the place. And oh my yes, you need to join in. |
This ain't just any blacklist, mind. This isn't BushCo carefully marking down, in his most favoritest red crayon, the hundreds of millions of names of those who oppose mindless imbecilic wars. This isn't Lynne Cheney making note of all media outlets that have pointed out how her daughter is a devout lesbian and sending each of them nasty little notes threatening to refuse them access to Dick's secret underground love bunker.
This is an epic, absurd, wondrous, seething, beautifully detailed 19-page beast of a thing, a true monster list packed with the names of an incredible assortment of top-shelf celebs and organizations and columnists and artists and
activists and publications and corporations from all corners of the culture. Are you on the list? No? What are you waiting for? After all, it's incredibly easy to join.
Simply put, the NRA's "most hated" list consists of anyone who has at any time and in any way opposed the organization's gun-lickin' agenda. Translation: anyone who has ever supported antigun legislation or safety locks
or the Brady bill or the assault-weapons ban, or even mentioned that they thought America's fetish for violence and guns might be a bit, you know, excessive and dangerous and spiritually devastating -- perhaps followed by a
casual mention that they, like most of the civilized universe, think Charlton Heston is pretty much a crusty gun-sniffin' loon. Yep, that would do it for sure.
Oprah. Britney Spears. Bruce Springsteen. Julia Roberts. Sean Connery. Mike Myers. Julia Ormond. Mary Lou Retton. Matt Damon. George Clooney. A&M Records. The American Academy of Pediatrics. NBC. Stonyfield Farms Yogurt. The American
Medical Association. The St. Louis Rams. Motorcycle Cruiser magazine. Hallmark. All on the list. And that's but a fraction.
Religious organizations and doctor's groups, children's-advocacy groups and fashion designers and the YWCA and a thousand other names, a veritable cultural smorgasbord, a huge and impressive cross-section of the nation, all on the list of those the NRA has to really, really watch out for lest they start banding together to imperil your God-given right to blow the living crap out of people
with a 9mm Glock.
And you might think, glancing down the list, that it's just comical and sad how the nation's most powerful and paranoid gun club sees no self-mockery in this, no hint that in creating such an impressive catalog of its "enemies" and
revealing just how extensive is the list of intelligent and thoughtful and creative people and organizations who all find some sort of fault with its gun-fetishizin' agenda, they might just be revealing how pitiable and warped
their cause actually is. You might think.
You would be very wrong. NRA Rule #1: Abandon all sense of irony and perspective, ye who cock 'n' load here.
This is what makes the NRA the NRA. This is why people join. That sense of being intensely persecuted by those outside their club. That bitter resentment at all the so-called liberal bias aimed at them, a feeling that no one understands them or their love of guns and that everyone is out to get them and desecrate their beloved Second Amendment, and therefore all the NRA's oppressed AWM (Angry White
Men) gotta stick together lest Barbra Streisand swoop in and take away all their armor-piercing ammo.
And, furthermore, goes the NRA thinking, if everyone's not armed to the teeth at all times in every situation, why, some masked Laotian gangbanger will almost certainly break in to your tract home and steal your depressed teenage daughter
and buzz-cut her hair and make her listen to lots of Indigo Girls. Guy's gotta be prepared, right? High five.
Maybe you are not on the NRA's list just yet. Maybe you want to join the blacklist and add your name to the thousands who look at the NRA and feel, well, not really anger, not liberal outrage, not even mistrust or disgust.
But more like this overwhelming sense of sadness, and embarrassment, and twisted empathy, this acidic knot in the gut at all the ignorance and misinfo the NRA seems to wallow in and engender in its members, what with the 32,000-plus
gun-related deaths in America every year, even as the NRA actively works to reverse the assault-weapons ban in Congress and absolve gun makers and dealers from any liability and protect your right to buy the same high-powered Bushmaster rifle used by that murderous D.C. sniper.
Because remember, to extend the NRA's favorite saying, guns don't kill people, gun-happy sociopaths weaned on ultraviolent media coupled with the NRA's very brand of fearmongering and paranoia and intolerance and anticultural loathing kill people.
You want to be on the NRA's list, even if you're not famous? You want to be an honorary member, in spirit, right alongside Maya Angelou and Jack Nicholson and the Kansas City Royals? It's easy! Here's how:
-- Laugh at fear. First and foremost. The NRA really, really hates this, when you are not afraid of "furriners" or gangbangers or drug dealers sneaking into your suburban home at any moment to molest your goldfish and hold a sari to your
head and make you praise Vishnu.
-- Refuse myopia. It ain't Us vs. Them. It ain't Guns vs. Hugs. It ain't Kill-'em-all vs. Can't-we-just-be-friends. No one says skeet shootin' ain't fun. No one is trying to take all the guns away. Just the ones that shoot 100 rounds per
second and can take out a tank at one mile and can wipe out a playground full of screaming kids in eight seconds.
-- Make a note of how in one recent year, guns murdered four people in New Zealand, 19 in Japan, 54 in England, 57 in Australia, 66 in Switzerland, 151 in Canada, 373 in Germany, and 11,798 in the U.S. Note how the NRA hates stats like
this. Send this note to all your friends, using the subject line: "Fun data to toss around at a GOP party or when scoring Vicodin for Rush Limbaugh."
-- Applaud loudly at the end of "Bowling for Columbine," which does more to bind the NRA to America's culture of fear and hate than any movie in history, and makes former NRA chief Charlton Heston look far less like a macho gun-gropin'
hero to be cheered, and more like a sad, woefully uninformed curmudgeon to be pitied.
-- Note, finally, that the NRA blacklist is positively teeming with people and organizations that do tremendous good in the world, poets and artists and comedians and healers, promoters of peace and well-being and education. Choose
to become one of them, participate in the culture of creation and juicy positivism as opposed to one of fear and ammo and a warped vision of the U.S. as this modern, hyperviolent gun-totin' Wild West.
Voilè! -- the NRA will automatically assume you are a vile tofu-suckin' liberal threat to the sanctity of deadly handheld weaponry, and, much like the vast majority of the positive and less gun-obsessed world already is, you'll be on
the list in no time. And, really, who wouldn't want to be?