The tattered old apologies by the way of hunting and target shooting and even self-defense are absent. Guns now are the symbol of a license to hate the other: the liberals and the media and the rest who are part of a “socialist wave.”

… To an astonishing degree, [this] argument has become bald and brutal: you are the gun that you own.

… [O]ne can read in Friday’s New York Post that a desire to own an AR-15, in its cultural context, is “no different from wanting a Louboutin or a Birkin bag.”

… A lethal weapon designed solely to devastate a human body and explode the organs inside is, as a matter of inarguable fact, nothing in the world like a Birkin bag. It is odd that the same people who are usually so ready to condemn any form of moral relativism are so eager to embrace this kind. It’s wrong, they often tell us, to say that this or that element of Islamic practice is just “their culture”; but we should tip-toe around people who keep military weapons of mass killing…

… Martin Luther King, Jr., was a man of infinite patience, committed to peaceful change. This meant that he was opposed to acts of violence against bigots. It did not mean that he thought that there was a respectable case to be made for violent bigotry. If you do not want to be thought complicit in the mass murder of children, the best way is to cease to be complicit in the mass murder of children.

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