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Jerome Christenson: We have met the terrorists…

Jerome Christenson: We have met the terrorists…

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Jerome Christenson

Jerome Christenson

“Stupid is as stupid does.” Forrest Gump

I really just don’t get it…how stupid are we?

Like a bad joke, the story always starts the same, “A guy with a gun walks into a…”

Pretty much ends the same, too.

Over and over, same start, same end.


After all the years; all the headlines; all the wasted thoughts and prayers I’m too tired of it to be angry, too numbed to be shocked. All that’s left is shame and disgust, and a certain dull-eyed amazement at how we can still be so stupid.

It’s not that Ben Franklin, James Madison and all the other guys in knee breeches and powdered wigs were stupid men. They were trying to make a nation out of a few hard pressed colonies hugging the coast of a hostile continent and recognized that out on the thinly settled frontier there were well-armed leftover British, French and Spanish, not to mention aggrieved Indians and various and sundry bandits threatening peace, life and property. To bring and keep order, the new country would have to depend on its citizens, thus “A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.”

The guy who shot up the supermarket in Boulder wasn’t contributing to the “security of a free State.”

For that matter, the costumed clowns who carried AR15s into the Michigan state Capitol were no “well-regulated Militia.”

Take a look around. We’re not threatened by bears, wolves or hostile Indians anymore. The arms we “keep and bear” kill our neighbors, kill our children, or we use them to kill ourselves.

“Protection.” That’s the word I keep hearing. But what exactly is it so many of us are so afraid of? I don’t get it. People who tell me that in order to be safe they need to have a gun with them all day, every day live in the same town I do, shop at the same stores, drink in the same saloons, drive the same streets, sit in the same church. How is it that in all these years I’ve yet to find myself in a situation that a .45 carried in my waistband would have improved – and that’s true for darn near all of us. Still, we like to imagine we’re really the Lone Ranger, Matt Dillon, Dirty Harry and Daniel Boone instead of a bunch of overweight, out of shape, Walter Mittys, a bunch of civilian would-be Barney Fifes who shouldn’t even be trusted with a bullet in our shirt pockets.

Stupid. We’re so damn stupid. Forty thousand dead last year stupid.

There are millions of guns out there. Too many guns. It’s not high noon at the OK Corral. A Colt Single Action isn’t a Peacemaker anymore. It’s long past time to regulate, register, license and … yes … confiscate.

And no, that doesn’t mean America will become the Fourth Reich or some other totalitarian fantasyland. So far Japan, Canada, the whole damn EU, England, New Zealand, Australia (Crocodile Dundee got enough testosterone for ya?) all manage to be lands of the free and homes of the brave without packing heat to go to the mall. Oh, and all the folks that think they’d be some sort of 21st century Minutemen? That takes a special kind of stupid. Them, their buddies and their squirrel guns are taking on the 101st Airborne … riiiiiiiiiight. If you think you’re gonna take on the U.S. government and Fleet Farm is your munitions depot, well you’ve been reading too many comic books and watching too many cowboy movies. Your F-150 against their M1 Abrams – that ain’t gonna be pretty.

Stupid. So damn stupid.

Last year they counted 611 mass shootings in America – shootings where four or more people were shot or killed in a single incident not including the shooter. And 94 days into 2021 we have seen 104. We have met the terrorists and they are us.

And nothing will be done.

Forget the thoughts and prayers; just don’t try to tell me we’re not stupid.


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