America, we’re glad you’re here. Come in. Sit down. Make yourself comfortable. Can we offer you a drink? Sorry we’re all out of Kool-Aid. Russia was here earlier and they drank us clean out. We’ve laid out some of your favourite snacks for you. Don’t worry they all have high-fructose corn syrup. We know you have a sensitive stomach.
So America, we need to talk…
America, there’s no other way we can say this. You have a problem. As your friends we can’t in good conscience hold our tongues any longer. We tried to be patient with you, we really did. Each time you spiralled out of control in some self-destructive moment of madness we all thought okay this time America has hit rock bottom. This time America will realise that something has to change. But we’ve seen it happen too many times now. And you never change.
First, let us confess something of our own. The rest of us, we talk about you when you aren’t around. We do it quite a bit actually. And look, it’s not something we’re terribly proud of. So it feels good to finally admit that to you. We realise now that we have kept our feelings to ourselves for too long, snickering and whispering behind your back at your recklessness, shrugging our shoulders saying, “crazy America, what you gonna do?” But now we understand that we have just been enablers. And that has to stop too.
So, the first thing we need you to do is admit you have a problem. You are completely out of control. You are an addict. That’s right. You’re addicted to guns. I know you don’t like hearing it, but it’s the truth. This is an intervention. It’s so long overdue, if it were a pregnancy it would be leaving the womb with osteoporosis.
Now we know what you are going to say, so don’t even try to give us any of that Second Amendment baloney. THE SECOND AMENDMENT DOES NOT GRANT YOU THE RIGHT TO BEAR ARMS. Sorry, we’ll stop yelling now.
We know this is a tough one for you to accept so let’s step through it. The amendment says: “A well regulated militia being necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed.” You adopted it way back in 1791. Do you remember what the deadliest weapon on the planet was back then? The cannon. That’s right, that old thing you fire off every now and then to salute things. When cannons were the most advanced tool of warfare, militias were indeed necessary for national security. But times have changed. You have grown up. We all have. Now you have a stockpile of some 2,000 nuclear weapons, fighter jets that fly faster than the speed of sound that can take-off and land on ships, and drones capable of killing targets thousands of miles away via remote control. In 1791 the steam train hadn’t even been invented yet. In the twenty-first century militias have become so redundant the English language doesn’t have a word strong enough to emphasise it. Maybe the Germans have one? They have a word for everything those Germans.
So if militias aren’t necessary to the security of a free state then we’re sorry to say it means that your right to keep and bear arms can be infringed. And no, we’re not saying you have to give up all of your guns: just most of them. You can keep the ones you need on your farms, to arm your police force, you can even keep some for hunting, though you know we don’t really approve of that, but we’ll save that discussion for another time. But guns for self defence? No, absolutely not. They all have to go. Every single one of them. Guns in your urban centres should be about as common as chicken coops in backyards. You don’t still do that do you?
To be honest we don’t even really understand how you became so addicted. Sure, we all experimented with guns in our younger days. But then we grew out of it. You say you are a frontier country and reminisce about the days of the wild wild west; think guns are part of your DNA. But that’s just the addict in you talking. It’s nonsense. Those were your teenage years. When you had long unwashed hair and had to go outside to use the bathroom. You outgrew all of that. Why not this too?
And look, owning guns doesn’t make you look cool. It certainly doesn’t make you look tough. To be honest, to the rest of us it looks like you’re overcompensating for something. If you know what we mean. Let us put it another way. When we see you standing there with all of your guns we kind of think of you as that short, fat, bald, 50 year-old doing 40 in his secondhand convertible. You think that looks cool? No, we thought not. Do you really want to be that guy?
You’re always telling us that you are the ‘home of the brave’. We sometimes laugh behind your back when you say that. Sorry about that. Guns are not the weapons of the brave. They are the comfort objects of cowards. You think its brave to have an arsenal stockpiled in your basement? Or as you sit there on your porch, cradling your gun in your lap, cocking it half-crazed whenever the shadows move. Sorry, no chance.
Now, we know this isn’t going to be easy for you. So maybe just start off slowly. Try to stop saying trite things like ‘guns don’t kill people, people do’. They just make you sound stupid. And, oh yes, now that we think about it, the N.R.A.: you two need a divorce. Like stat. We know you think they love you but they don’t. They hate you. They hate everything. Well, everything except for guns. They get off on the power they have over you; how all they have to do is snap their fingers and you come running. Somehow they have convinced you that the right to bear arms is some universal, inalienable, fundamental right. These rights are concepts, not possessions.
You are like a battered spouse. They have systematically destroyed your self-esteem (hard to believe I know). But they’ve convinced you that you’re nothing without them. They are bullies. They are you past, not your future. You just need to end it.
So how about it? Are you willing to admit you have a problem? Everyone makes mistakes. God knows the rest of us sure have. No, we’re not looking at you Germany. But America, we’re here for you. We’re here to help. All you have to do is ask.