Newmann: A modest proposal |

Newmann: A modest proposal

The governor of Colorado signed four new gun bills into law the other day … and immediately put himself in Holy jeopardy.

In response to the signing of the bills, Taylor Rhodes, the executive director of the Rocky Mountain Gun Owners, said, “We’re talking about constitutional freedoms here, we’re talking about things that are guaranteed by God and enshrined in our government.”

Well, who would have guessed that the Almighty had such an interest in guns? But you certainly don’t want to mess with a divine guarantee.

So, maybe the safest thing to do (and not risk heavenly retribution) is to forget about any controls or regulations … and just provide firearms to everyone. Seems like the most practical — and simple — solution to this thorny issue.

Some folks have suggested mandating that, due to the abundance of school shootings, teachers should be armed. Well, there are only so many teachers … and a whole lot more kids. So, to heck with having to be 21 to purchase a weapon. Why not just arm all the kids? Of course, this could cause a bit of undue mayhem at recess. But nothing a bit of education couldn’t sort out. However, there’d have to be one proviso: kids under six couldn’t have AR-15s. The recoil might damage their teeth and lead to undue dental hardships for their parents.

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As far as the rest of the populace … well, since we all know that guns don’t kill people because people kill people, no worries. If everyone had a firearm, we probably wouldn’t have the same carnage that we face now. Any miscreant could just be dealt with on an individual basis. Say the kid next door rolls a ball into your yard without your permission. That’s invasion of your property and you have every right to defend yourself. Same if a stranger rings your doorbell or drives up your driveway unannounced. And, if you happen to be out in your own backyard shooting off your AR at midnight and the neighbors ask you to please stop … hmmm, that could probably be construed as an unlawful request. And worthy of an immediate visit to their house, AR in hand, to set them straight on the illegality of their request.

There’s also really no reason to have background checks since, if everyone else has a gun, you’d be totally disenfranchised if you didn’t. So any check of your history or mental state would be discriminatory and would probably violate your Constitutional rights — and, by way of Mr. Rhodes, your divine rights, too. Thus, background checks could definitely go by the boards.

Speaking of mental states, seems like quite a bit of the gun violence (violence being such a nasty and pejorative word) has been blamed on mental illness. So maybe it’s time to get a bunch of weapons psychologists involved so they could start gently educating folks that it’s OK to be a bit cuckoo … but just not too cuckoo with a firearm. We certainly don’t want to single out folks with trigger issues and make them feel bad. Plus, taking weapons away from people predisposed toward mental and/or emotional problems would only cause more angst for them. And probably create even more problems. So let’s just be inclusive with these folks. And let them buy or keep their firearms.

Of course, by now the governor has probably had time to reflect on the error of his ways and will, undoubtedly, rescind these draconian bills.

After all, it’s one thing to sign earthly measures. But quite another to take on heaven in the process.

Tom Newmann splits his time between Edwards and Queenstown, New Zealand. He has been going winter-to-winter since 1986. He was also a journalist in Missoula, Montana, at the Missoulian for quite a few years. Email him at

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