If you spend a lot of time on Facebook, or Twitter, as well, you are exposed to a steady flow of chatter that at least one other person has found amusing or enlightening.
In light of our nation’s most recent mass shooting an interesting observation began making the rounds. Published originally (as far as we can tell) in early 2013 by a writer named William Hamby at the Denver-based website, www.examiner.com, the “meme” — as they like to say on the Internet — goes something like this:
What if gun rights were regulated like abortion rights? Here’s a list of just some of the hoops you would have to jump through before you could own a gun:
Only one store in the entire state would sell guns. (See: Mississippi, Arkansas, North Dakota, South Dakota, and Wyoming for states with only one abortion provider.)
You would have to fill out an enormous personal background check including intrusive personal information that has nothing to do with your ability to own or use a gun. Then you’d have to wait at least 72 hours and come back to the store. (Remember, it’s the only one in the state. You better hope you don’t live on the other side of Wyoming.)
Upon your return, you would have to sit through intensive mandatory counseling. Your counselor, regardless of his personal beliefs, would have to tell you that gun ownership is actually a bad idea, and that it would negatively effect your mental health to own a gun. (This, despite there being no scientific evidence to support the claim.)
Next, you would sit through a gruesome movie showing the actual aftermath of domestic gun crimes. You’d see people with half a head. You’d see dead children in their beds. You’d see the bloody aftermath of a school shooting. You’d be shown statistic after statistic warning you that you would be contributing to this morally degenerate sanctioning of murder.
If you lived in Virginia, you’d have to come back (again) for an invasive and uncomfortable fMRI (which costs around $300 out of your pocket) to ensure your honesty in answering all the background check information and your intentions to use your gun responsibly. (The writer explains that this was as close as he could get to the invasive transvaginal procedure included in the recently passed Virginia bill — this was written in 2013.)
And by the way, if you were married, your spouse might have to sign off on your gun ownership.
Once you jumped through all these hoops, you could buy a gun. In a week, if you wanted another gun, you would have to start over at Step 1. No exceptions.