You see, this is why we shouldn't elect bizarre businessmen to high office.
Sen. Ron Johnson, R-Wis., was interviewed on "Fox News Sunday" and host Chris Wallace asked him whether he would find acceptable a ban on high-capacity magazines for assault rifles as a means of limiting the amount of killing crazy people might do in movie theaters.
Nope. Those magazines, that can hold up to 100 bullets and enable a killer to fire about once a second, are a constitutional right, Johnson said. Besides, it would be almost impossible to limit access to those weapons and attempts to do so infringe upon our freedom.
I guess I should have expected as much.
We have a certain class of politicians in this world who think there can be no restriction on the rights of people to own as many guns as they wish, load them up with as many bullets as they wish, and carry them wherever they wish to carry them (so far, no one has actually suggested a constitutional right to use those guns to murder people).
These tend to be the same politicians, incidentally, who have no qualms about telling a pregnant woman she has no right to an abortion. Restrictions on individual freedom seem to begin and end at the barrel of a gun.
Johnson seems intent on carving out for himself a wild west reputation. In his world, the rich and powerful will be free to do what they want and the meek and poor will be free to cower.
What's worse, I fear the guy really believes the nonsense he keeps spouting.
And that would be all right with me if Johnson was a United States Senator from Alabama or from Alaska or from some other state where we expect bizarre characters to be elected. I'm not against a healthy exchange of ideas, even of dumb ideas.
What bothers me is that Johnson is a United States Senator from Wisconsin, which means he represents me.
It is just embarrassing to be represented by politicians lionized by Fox News.
Johnson, incidentally, does have a solution for the kind of mayhem illustrated in the Colorado shootings and the solution does not involve limiting a person's right to own assault rifles generally best suited for war.
In his Fox News interview, Johnson said we have to reinvent our schools so that they teach values. The kinds of people who murder others in movie theaters are "sick, demented, evil" people, the senator said. In order to stop them we have to start teaching morals in our homes and schools.
Do you really think the fact that a former honors student goes berserk , booby traps his apartment, and then goes on a killing spree is because no one taught him right from wrong?
I don't. I think the guy was insane. And I'm not sure there's all that much society can do about insane people. Often, we don't know about them until they carry out some tragedy.
But there is something society can do about allowing anyone who wants the right to purchase assault weapons and to purchase thousands of bullets through the internet. We probably can't stop them completely since the Supreme Court seems hell-bent on protecting the individual's right to bear arms.
But we can limit their ability to accumulate those arms and to accumulate the bullets used to kill so many innocent people.