Click amount to donate direct to CounterPunch
  • $25
  • $50
  • $100
  • $500
  • $other
  • use PayPal
It’s your last chance to make a tax-deductible donation to CounterPunch in 2017. Help us gear up to fight the status-quo in 2018! Every dollar counts!
FacebookTwitterGoogle+RedditEmail

A Method to His Madness: Stephen Paddock and the 2nd Amendment

by

Sometimes, the effect of an action betrays its motive.  Amongst the most remarkable consequences of Paddock’s horrific crime is that the NRA has, for the first time in the recent history of mass murder in the USA, actually come out in favor of gun control legislation.

What?  Does this mean that Paddock was not a criminal but a revolutionary?  In fact, the very definition of a terrorist; though incomprehensibly a “white” man who loved country music and who “studied arguments for his right to own weapons under the US constitution” according to an acquaintance, as reported by the Guardian on October 4th.

According to this logic, Paddock did it, not in order to declare his “right to bear arms”, but rather to force the gun control industry and their puppets in Congress to actually respect the 2nd Amendment.  Paddock, who suffered from a “God complex”, according to other reports, unleashed hell-fire on his own people to punish them for their ignorance of “his” laws, and to target the client base of the NRA to force them to look past the profit motive.

As someone whose “grasp of detail about the 2nd amendment seemed superior”, according to the boyfriend of Danly’s sister, Paddock would be familiar with the landmark case District of Columbia vs. Heller (2008).  In that case, which struck down a DC ban on handguns, the Supreme Court was clear that the purpose of the 2nd amendment was to protect the right of self-defense, mainly in the home; but did not extend to the right to keep and carry any weapon whatsoever or for whatever purpose.

Clearly “bump stocks” are not needed for self-defense in the home, nor is the stockpiling of some 23 or more guns including AK47’s to be smuggled into some den of iniquity in Vegas for the purpose of mass murder.  By making a mockery of the failure to respect the goal of a “well-regulated militia” established in the 2nd Amendment, Paddock calculated that he could single-handedly bring the NRA to its knees. And he did.

This should not surprise us because Paddock was a professional gambler; an expert at calculating risk and reward; who applied these skills in his meticulously planned, and ironic, “revolution”. But he was a gambler with a sense of justice, however merciless. He wasn’t a corporate boss, or a mechanic when he worked for the Post Office, the IRIS and Lockheed Martin; he was an “auditor”.  He was an expert on the enforcement of regulations, who had honed his skills in the regulation of weapons in the Defense Industry.

He was also the son of a bank robber, from whom it would seem he had inherited psychopathic levels of insensitivity.  His action was in this sense a symptom of mental illness, not “pure evil”. But there is no treatment for psychopathology, nor is it even acknowledged by the criminal law as an illness, though it is no more the fault of its victims than is schizophrenia or obsessive-compulsive disorder. The problem is that, unlike the neurotic who mainly tortures himself, the psychopath leaves such a devastating external trail a destruction behind him, literally in this case, bodies strewn in a field.

Paddock was similar then to other political types like Hitler, Stalin, and Nixon (perhaps even Donald Trump?)  But the emerging post-modern revolutionary is different in that he is not a party man.  He is instead a “lone-wolf”, an anarchist of the violent school, for Paddock has shown that today one man can bring down an empire like the NRA, something that in former ages it would have taken an army to achieve.

More articles by:
December 14, 2017
John W. Whitehead
Surveillance That Never Sleeps
Pam Martens - Russ Martens
Roy Moore’s Loss: a Victory for the Young Girls of America
Eric Toussaint
Debt is a Determining Factor in History
Kenneth Surin
Selective Impressions of the New Zealand-Aotearoa Conjuncture
Liaquat Ali Khan
Appropriation of Jerusalem
Jack Rasmus
Is the Bitcoin Bubble the New ‘Subprime Mortgage’ Bomb?
William Sanjour
How the Once Tiny Waste Management Industry Captured the EPA and Became Very BIG
Devin Currens
Hey Mainstream Environmentalists: If You’re Not Embarrassed, You’re Not Paying Attention
Courtney Myers
“Me Too” Movement Gives Twitter Fuel to Trump’s Fire
Mel Gurtov
Momentum for Talks with North Korea?
Julian Vigo
Student Loans, The Indentured Servitude of the 21st Century
John Carroll Md
Do Jimmy Kimmel and Haiti Have Anything in Common?
Brian Foley
How to Stop Trump
December 13, 2017
Gabriel Rockhill
The U.S. is Not a Democracy, It Never Was
Jim Kavanagh
Zionism in the Light of Jerusalem
John Davis
The Epic of Our Awakening
Linn Washington Jr.
The Shadow of Smuts on Trump’s Jerusalem Declaration
Timothy M. Gill
The Global Retreat From Human Rights in the Trump Administration
Robert Fisk
Trump’s Shameful Decision on Jerusalem
Lance Olsen
Natural Variability isn’t the Final Word on Climate Science
Robert Jensen
In Patriarchy, Sexual “Misconduct” Not Surprising
Cesar Chelala
Living in New York, Missing Home
Mike Bader
Grizzly Bear Goal Not Yet Achieved
Steve Horn
India May Ban Petcoke, One of Dirtiest Fossil Fuels Exported by Koch Brothers
December 12, 2017
John Pilger
Why the Documentary Must Not Be Allowed to Die
David Rosen
Politics Trumps Religion: The Immorality of Republican “Christian” Morality
Ken Levy
Apparently, Child Rapists Deserve the Death Penalty, But a Child Molester Deserves a U.S. Senate Seat
John Wight
Trump’s Jerusalem Ploy
David Swanson
Sun Tzu: The Ass of War
Ramzy Baroud
The ‘Last Martyr’: Who Killed Kamal Al-Assar?
Doug Johnson
Are Polls Showing a Win for Accused Molester Roy Moore Accurate?
Andrew Bacevich
A Harvey Weinstein Moment for America’s Wars?
Robert Dodge
Saving Humanity From Itself
Binoy Kampmark
Pakistan, US Drones and Idle Threats
Tom H. Hastings
Leave it on The Table Again?
Cesar Chelala
Living in New York. Missing Home
December 11, 2017
Oscar Oliver-Didier 
The Invisibility of Poverty in Puerto Rico
Patrick Cockburn
Trump’s Jerusalem Decision Risks Uniting the Entire Arab World Against the US
Uri Avnery
From Barak to Trump
Robert Hunziker
Dying Ecosystems
Paul Tritschler
The Year Without Summer
Ramzy Baroud
What Trump Has Done: The Entire US-Middle East Political Framework Just Collapsed
Francis Thicke
What Does “Organic” Mean?
Franklin Lamb
Foreign Proxies Prematurely Boast “Mission Accomplished” in Syria
Mike Whitney
Petty, Backstabbing by Washington Sinks Russia’s Olympic Dreams
FacebookTwitterGoogle+RedditEmail