Dirty Magazines in Vermont

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Column by Alex R. Knight III.

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When I was a kid, my mother (or more likely, one of her boyfriends) kept a stack of dirty magazines hidden in a closet. Of course, always the curious type, I found them one day, said nothing about it, and then sometime later, shared them with my friends. Being about six or seven years old at the time, I eventually got caught, was to some degree reprimanded for this premature incursion into the realm of adults, and the magazines disappeared after that. But that wasn't a problem. In those long-ago days of yesteryear before there was an Internet, my buddies and I still got our hands on any number of Playboys, Penthouses, Hustlers, and other men's magazines of the day with relatively little hassle and fair regularity. We learned plenty about sex and female anatomy from them. My only regret, in retrospect, is that I didn't live out the deniability cliché and actually pay more attention to the articles and fiction. There were plenty of both in those mags back then, and by some great writers too – both already famous, and up-and-coming.

But the immediate point we can take away from this, of course, is that prohibition, in any form, doesn't work – not then, and not now. And it won't ever, in fact. Where there exists a market for goods and services, whatever those might be, such things will be available. Government intervention can only make them more expensive and/or more difficult or dangerous in quality and to obtain. Never can bureaucrats outright stop them. In fact, many times the bureaucrats themselves become corrupted, and participate in the trafficking. Further lesson? Markets always win. Always. There are scarcely any exceptions to this.

Thus it is that I and at least a few hundred thousand others – millions, really, in all likelihood – look upon recent Vermont (of all places!) anti-gun legislation with disgust, and not a bit of sardonic humor, as well. In sum total, all three bills which passed through the virulently Marxist legislature and to the desk of a spineless, lying turncoat of a governor (Phil Scott), will initiate the following: Allow police to confiscate firearms on the basis of a mere domestic violence accusation; allow police to confiscate firearms if they feel an individual may be likely to harm themselves or others; ban bump-stock devices; raise the age for purchasing any firearm to 21; require federal background checks for all firearm purchases (including private person to person sales); ban ammunition magazines above 10 round capacity for rifles and 15 round capacity for pistols. They will also make felony crimes out of existing misdemeanor statutes such as threatening or being on school grounds with intent to harm.

Of all these recent abominations – which destroy 277 years of virtually pristine and unique Vermont gun freedoms – the ammunition magazine capacity ban ranks arguably as the most egregious, since it will most frequently and most intrusively affect average Vermont gun owners. That said, since pre-ban magazines will remain perfectly legal – may even be brought out of Vermont and back in again legally – and since the vast majority of magazines manufactured carry no production date or serial numbers stamped into them, this law is also quite happily unenforceable. All the more so, in fact, by virtue of the fact that most police in Vermont are opposed to this idiocy in the first place, and many of them have openly sworn to never make any attempt to enforce it. Would that they would issue the same pledge with the same fervor towards any number of other government edicts (read opinions of bureaucrats backed by violent force), but that is another matter for another time.

So suffice it to say that standard and high-capacity ammunition magazines in Vermont will become like the pornographic magazines of my youth: Officially banned, but unofficially available everywhere – not the least sources for which, I expect, will be readily found at all gun shops right next door in sales-tax free New Hampshire – and only to the detriment of good, honest Vermont business owners and a handful of out-of-Vermont Internet vendors. Moreover, because of this bureaucratic arrogance, untold numbers of such ammunition magazines and feeding devices are pouring into Vermont as I write this in staggering numbers. I mean incredible quantities. At day's end, there will be enough such magazines in Vermont – suited to every conceivable make, model, and caliber of firearm – as to make the US military look like a Los Angeles street gang. Once again, prohibition only equals unintended consequences, and never the intended results. Had the insufferable Mongoloids who conceived this foolishness (primarily a one Martin LaLonde of South Burlington) taken a moment or two to engage in something at least resembling thought, they might've realized that such a ban would only backfire, causing ten or 20 times as many ammunition magazines to enter Vermont than if they had just left well enough alone. But it's wrong, I suppose, to credit the people calling themselves government with any real intellect anyway. Their chosen career path and belief system prove their intellectual inferiority at face value.

And then there are books...

Since we're on the subject of magazines, and thus literature (of a sort, anyway), it might be of benefit to observe that, guns and ammunition being inanimate objects all, the true potential for danger arising from them stems from thoughts and ideas – and these of course from the user of the firearm, and not the firearm itself. So if we're going to talk about banning inanimate objects, ought we not discuss banning books instead of guns?

Consider that, for all the guns involved, it is quite a compelling argument to be made that not one of them would've ever been raised in violence in any number of past situations had it not been for the publication of, as just a few examples, Mein Kampf, The Communist Manifesto, The Holy Bible, The Torah, The Quran, Chairman Mao's Little Red Book, or Thomas Paine's Common Sense. There exist, without question, countless others – with undoubtedly far more to come in the future. And since these books, these sets of ideas, have fueled such violence in the past – and continue, in many cases, to do so in the present, should people not be prevented from having access to them?

If the lessons of prohibition above cannot convince the self-righteous advocate of government force (and they rarely or never do), then they likewise will fully fail to grasp the irony and hypocrisy of opposing censorship, yet embracing gun control. Such is the substandard nature of statists and statism.

Such is also the reason why their efforts, and their philosophy, must be rigorously opposed and fundamentally rejected at every turn by those of us who possess the intelligence to see them for who and what they are, and the self-respect to demand to live in liberty.

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Alex R. Knight III's picture
Columns on STR: 143

Alex R. Knight III is the author of numerous horror, science-fiction, and fantasy tales.  He has also written and published poetry, non-fiction articles, reviews, and essays for a variety of venues.  He currently lives and writes in rural southern Vermont where he holds a B.A. in Literature & Writing from Union Institute & University.  Alex's Amazon page can be found here, and his work may also be found at both Smashwords and Barnes & Noble.  His Facebook page can be found here.  Receive Alex's occasional Tweets here.