The New York Times today did something it had not done since the Harding administration: it published an editorial on the front page. It did so not because it had a rational argument to make, or a useful policy to advance — it had neither of those things. Why, then, would the Times make such an extraordinary gesture? It can best be understood as an act of purely religious defiance, no different from the jihadi’s cry Allahu Akbar! It is meant to rally the faithful, and to embolden the Gray Lady’s mujahedeen for the wet-work lying just ahead. And that’s what it will be, because in the editorial the Times makes an outright call for the confiscation of guns — something that simply will not happen in the United States without an application of state power that would almost surely lead to blood.
We read (my emphasis):
Certain kinds of weapons, like the slightly modified combat rifles used in California, and certain kinds of ammunition, must be outlawed for civilian ownership. It is possible to define those guns in a clear and effective way and, yes, it would require Americans who own those kinds of weapons to give them up for the good of their fellow citizens.
Why is this neither a rational argument nor a useful policy prescription? Writing at Reason, Brian Doherty explains. I thank him for saving me the trouble.
This is not the only leftist lunacy in the mainstream New York press today. At the Daily News, one Linda Stasi has written a despicable article in which she bitterly reviles one of the people murdered in San Bernardino for his conservative opinions. So dark is her hatred that she refuses to count him among the victims.
I will not link to it. That a major New York newspaper would be so reckless as to print such a thing — more importantly, that the editors of the Daily News feel that the political climate in New York is such that it could publish such filth to the general approval of its readers — shows how dangerously charged the atmosphere is getting.
Finally, as long as we are on the subject of guns: a little while ago a commenter here posted an oft-repeated claim about the frequency of mass shootings. There had, he said, been “337 mass shootings in America so far this year, with a combined death toll of 431”. I meant to debunk this at the time, but never got around to doing so — so it is with particular satisfaction, given today’s front-page eructation by America’s “newspaper of record”, that I am able to refer you all to none other than the New York Times for a rebuttal.