A day or two ago, I noticed on my stats that this blog had received a couple of visits from Tucson in Arizona, which just happens to be the home of our beloved friend Mr Kevin Baker. I didn't think anything much of it until I recalled that part of Baker's initial reaction to the Cumbrian massacre last year was "I wonder what James Kelly will have to say about all this", apparently thinking that such an incident ought somehow to have made me question my belief that easy legal access to guns is a bad thing, as opposed to...well, confirming that belief. Was he really delusional enough to think the same thing as a result of dozens of murders in Norway carried out with legally-obtained firearms? I have my suspicions. After all, we learn on his blog that the problem in Norway was not Breivik's guns, or even his extreme right-wing ideology - no, it was simply that the victims "ran away". Baker quotes another blogger who said this -
"When (the shooter) began shooting, everyone ran.
That last factor alone is responsible for almost all of the dead. A tight group of young men taught to run at danger instead of away from it could have overpowered him almost at once."
And then he adds his own observation -
"Yes, had a group of young men charged the shooter, some of them would have been wounded or killed. But no one charged the shooter, and literally dozens are dead."
Jesus. Quite simply...Jesus.
Now, I'm not going to claim that the Kevin Baker Fan Club are ideologically fellow travellers of Breivik, because the Norwegian is a Christian fundamentalist and as I understand it Baker is an atheist. And of course one is a mass-murdering psychopath, and the other is a non-violent blogger. But, all the same, you wouldn't have to look far to spot the overlaps between the KBFC's own angry, paranoid rhetoric and Breivik's. Bearing that in mind, and also the fact that yet another legal gun owner has just done something that legal gun owners supposedly don't do, you might have thought that if we can't hear anything sensible from the direction of Tucson, Arizona, at the very least a period of dignified silence and reflection might have been in order.