Varmints and Such

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Here is my solution for young men, boys even, who want to use an AR15-type weapon: Join the Marine Corps or the Army and tell the recruiter you want to go into the 300 MOS — infantry. I guarantee any young guy who wants to shoot will have a lot of time with the M4 assault weapon. You might even go into a war zone and will be expected to kill people. Get your sights lined up on one or more evil-doers and pull the trigger. Bam! Head shot!

The big difference between going into a war zone to kill people versus going into a elementary school and killing 10-year-olds: The people in the war zone will most likely be shooting back, trying to kill you. The school children and their teachers are just trying to hide from your ugly ass.

Actor and Uvalde, Texas native Matthew McConaughey spoke to members of the media at the White House Briefing Room.

Uvalde, Texas pediatrician Dr. Roy Guerrero, testified about caring for the wounded and then trying to identify the dead. Guerrero was able to stay calm, even when he said two of those children had been decapitated —DECAPITATED — by the killer’s 5.56 NATO rounds. Let that sink in …

On the same day the Uvalde survivors and doctor were testifying before the House Oversight and Reform Committee,  we heard this new talking point from GOP senators: AR15s are good for varmints! Senator John Thune (R-SD) told reporters Tuesday, “In my state, they use them to shoot prairie dogs and, you know, other types of varmints. And so I think there are legitimate reasons why people would want to have them.”

Senator Bill Cassidy (R-LA) said, “”If you talk to the people that own it, killing feral pigs in the, whatever, the middle of Louisiana. They’ll wonder: ‘Why would you take it away from me?'”

Several other GOP members of Congress expressed similar attitudes.

As MSNBC host Lawrence O’Donnell often says, the GOP wants to continue shielding the gun lobby and ensure the conditions are such that American mass murderers are the best armed killers not in military uniforms.

Kimberly Rubio, the mother of shooting victim Alexandria “Lexi” Rubio, was sitting next to her husband, Iraq War vet Felix Rubio when she described their daughter Lexi to the members of the House Oversight and Reform Committee.

Rubio also pointedly focused on those that oppose gun safety regulations, saying, “We understand that for some reason, to some people — to people with money, to people who fund political campaigns — that guns are more important than children,”

Rubio then spoke to the parents of the future who will undoubtedly go through what she and her family are experiencing. “Somewhere out there, there is a mom listening to our testimony thinking, ‘I can’t even imagine their pain,’ not knowing that our reality will someday be hers. Unless we act now.”

But, you know, as Senator John Thune and so many other members of the Trump GOP Party said, they need those AR15-style assault weapons  for, “killin’ varmints and such.”

Varmints like me and my older brother Rick, May he rest in peace. See, when we were young and impressed, we would go out after midnight during the summers, with our friend Doug, and eat the blueberries and raspberries from the neighborhood gardens, along with some fresh veggies. We also had a couple of wrist rockets that could send nice steelies — shiny steel marbles — a quarter mile or more. Our steelies made a lot of noise … okay, maybe some of our neighbors probably thought Doug, Rick and myself were varmints and such. An AR15-type weapon could have taken care of us varmints, but good!

When my two older brothers (Carl and Rick) and I were young teenagers we were required to spend some time on Uncle John’s dairy farm. Anyone who ever had to muck out a cow barn knows what that means. I also spent some time with my Aunt Erma and Uncle Joe, up in Spooner, Wisconsin.

From L-R: Tim, Carl and Rick in 1992 (Tim Forkes)

In both locations if you wanted to hunt varmints and such we did it with a .410 shotgun or a .22 long rifle. I once asked why I couldn’t go out shooting varmints and such with a bolt-action .30-06. Uncle Joe looked at me like I was daft and said we didn’t need such a powerful gun for hunting varmints and such.

So when I hear a U.S. senator say people need the AR15-type weapon for hunting varmints and such, I can’t even laugh. It is an insult to my intelligence and I can’t imagine just how cruel an insult it is to every parent that heard the news that their child has been murdered. To hear that their young daughters were so horribly disfigured by the AR15-style weapon they could only be identified by DNA matches, or, sadly, one girl’s green Converse High-Tops with a heart drawn on the right shoe. And what? Their daughters and sons are less important than guns? Their sons and daughters are no better than varmints and such?

I just want to give the finger to everyone  and anyone that claims they need a NATO 5.56 round for hunting raccoons, possums, squirrels — varmints and such.

Miguel Cerrillo, whose daughter was one of the mass murderer’s “varmints” that day, but managed to survive, told the House Oversight and Reform Committee that he hopes something is done because “schools are not safe anymore.” Via a pre-recorded video his daughter Miah spoke to the committee about using her friend’s blood to smear all over herself to hide from the killer.

A while ago I promised the publishers I would refrain from dropping F-bombs. So, just know that I’m sending a big F-U to senator Thune and his fellow NRA lackeys in Congress who claim people need AR15-style weapons for killing small animals. Let’s be honest about why the vast majority of AR15-style gun owners have that weapon: It feels pretty damn cool to be standing their holding what looks line an M4 weapon, pretending they are some special operator in the SEALs or Army Rangers or USMC Recon. In reality, they are over weight pretenders.

Kimberly Rubio, who is a reporter for the local newspaper, the Uvalde Leader News, said something that should linger in our thoughts until the Congress addresses this epidemic of gun violence. Rubio said she and her husband dropped off ther daughter at the school, promising to take her out for ice cream to celebrate Lexi’s straight A’s. Kimberly and Felix watched their daughter walk into the school doors. Rubio said, “And that decision will haunt me for the rest of my life.”

Her testimony and that of all the men, women and children that testified before Congress should haunt us for all time. We should also remember what Mrs. Rubio also said: For some in Congress “guns are more important than children.”