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COMMENTARY

Social breakdown

Steve Comus

What we know and how we knew it are borrowed thoughts from yesterday’s world. Now we have to deal with today’s version and it won’t be as pretty.

The gun-buying frenzy when the COVID-19 pandemic broke out early this year has not subsided. Fears about the pandemic now seem to fade, replaced by angst over the horrors of devastating riots and anarchistic mobs.

As the anarchists, Communists and other subversives continue to cause mayhem in cities that are unable or unwilling to do their jobs by keeping the peace, there is a parallel rising tide in the hinterland that promises their homes and property will not be destroyed by those who would trash civilization as we know it.

Unlike the subversive destruction in cities the silent majority remains homebound, avoiding conflict for the time being. But millions more now have the means to defend their homes and families regardless the threat – pandemic or anarchistic.

There are a whole lot of “somebody done somebody wrong” songs being sung out there these days. It’s a never-ending daisy chain of discontent.

I remember the protests and riots of the ‘60s and ‘70s well. I broke into journalism covering them. Today’s unrest shares some things in common with them but there are distinct differences, as well.

Racial problems and their resulting unrest is one common denominator. It seems as though the country hasn’t solved that challenge yet.

There are people who feel they are shortchanged because of their race. But there are differences between political public protests that exercise First Amendment rights and riots sparked by anarchists and others who want to tear down the country.

For a number of years now, socialists, Communists and other anarchists have been doing all they can to trash this society. They have done everything from attempting to erase and then rewrite history to bullying the citizenry in ways that stifle free speech and the exercise of individual rights.

There is one thing about mob violence: It will not stop itself. If left unfettered, it will spread and become more violent, more destructive.

If government and law enforcement agencies cannot or will not put an end to the illegal violence, someone else will because the citizenry is not about to be held hostage in their own homes by criminal mobs.

Another huge difference between riots now and decades ago is the COVID-19 pandemic. Although the pandemic itself doesn’t seem to have stunted public protests and riots, there is one part of the overall equation that has changed from previous years.

Because of fears of what the pandemic might bring, there are now millions more citizens who own guns than there were before the pandemic – and there were a lot of gun owners before COVID-19.

It is interesting that the first-time gun buyers instinctively wanted the means of self-defense, even before the widespread rioting since. They obviously sensed that the virus could put them in jeopardy in ways far beyond becoming infected. They sensed potential social breakdown and it looks like their instincts were on-target.

Although there are isolated instances where citizens and guns have played a part in the riots, the fact is that the citizenry is packing heat. Should rioting come to their doorsteps, they have the means to stop the insanity in its tracks.

Right now, it is a most awkward time for this country, which potentially is on the edge of social collapse. Before, there was law and order. Now, there is riotous chaos in cities across the land. This in the wake of calls to end policing.

There never is a clear-cut point in time when the situation switches from peaceful to full collapse. Between those two parameters is a period of confusion in which enough of the social institutions still function to see attempts at enforcing laws, even if only inconsistently. At the same time there is enough lawlessness that it is unsafe for the citizenry to venture outside as they would do in “normal” times.

That makes it a truly ugly time because at that point there is no justice. The orchestrated bullying of the anarchists is mob rule. Chaos replaces order.

Much of the public discussion in recent times has focused on police actions, which have caused death or injury, and the demonstrations and riots that have followed. Technology has allowed for instant judgment by a diverse citizenry comprised of dueling viewpoints, each of which already had a chip on its shoulder.

It has been no accident that anarchists have seized the moment, fomenting the kinds of chaos it takes keep the flames of discord burning brightly.

Similar sequences of events have played out in cities throughout the country. Authorities do something that results in harm to an individual, protesters amass to bring attention to the matter, anarchists coopt the mass gatherings and turn them into riots.

Longstanding, systemic racism is cited as the base problem in this current social discussion in which the Trump administration is blamed. If that is so, then why did it exist when the Trump administration took office? If it has been longstanding and systemic, why was it not already solved by previous administrations? Particularly by the Obama administration?

Social discussions of firearms have for so long been dominated by the gun grabbers, who are allies of the anarchists, that now whenever guns are discussed in the media and social media, there is a call for “control” of these beastly devil’s works known as firearms.

Nowhere is this more evident than during discussions about the millions of new, first-time gun buyers. Chicken Little has gone berserk when this topic comes up, as commentators warn that the sky certainly will fall when all of these newbies mishandle their guns. Yet months and months continue to go by without a hint that there is a significant increase in accidental shooting incidents.

Unless law and order are restored, militancy and the destruction it spawns is assured. The difference will be that so far, the militancy has been limited to the anarchists. If chaos continues, it will be a two-way street. Let’s hope for a return of order.

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