Death and Taxes And Derrick Bird

It emerges that Cumbrian mass-killer Derrick Bird was inflamed by money-problems. A combination of an inheritance vendetta which wouldn’t look out of place in Shakespeare or Dickens, and a resulting tax situation which threatened to land him in jail, not unlike Al Capone. He killed his twin brother... Any critic reading that or seeing it on stage would harrumph about cliches and sharpen his pen for the critical slaughter. But it happened, like mashup of the book of Genesis, King Lear and Bleak House.

This surely teaches us that the main reason people still go nuts and kill everyone in sight is because of money. And the more central money becomes to our lives, and all the status and power and ‘respect’ it delivers, the more deranged we are likely to become when we feel cheated of it.
And when we have a gun under the bed, we will use it, just to prove to the world that we deserve respect, as we understand it – namely as a direct result of the amount of money we possess. Which is a reversion of cause and effect and retreat to primitive superstition, or borderline madness, as it’s also known. Such is the talismanic power of money, and of course, guns. The two go together like bacon and eggs or the Stock Market and BAE systems.
If we’d had a nuclear arsenal under the bed, we would use that to destroy the world. But luckily, at the moment, we don’t consider that the individual possession of atom bombs is helpful to anyone’s protection. They are considered unnecessary. The same is true of guns, especially in Derrick Bird’s case. And the burden of proof for would-be gunsters should be on them to demonstrate need in order to be granted a licence. Derrick Bird did not need a gun, and if he hadn’t had one, he would not have killed as many people – no matter what his crazed mind had press-ganged him to do.
The alternative is simply too close to a police state. The applicant of every licence to be investigated down to their toenails, and their psychological profile analysed and computer-projected to reveal the forehead-tattooed crack-head lurking in the future – (where applicable, naturally, only ten percent of gun owners will ever suffer any form of serious clinical mental illness). It is the current burden of paperwork in the application procedure which enabled Bird to slip through the net. This is because policy still panders to a microscopic minority of gun-fetishists and fossilised adolescents who cannot live without their regular dose of action at-a-distance. Without the magic wand of ballistic power. The so-called ‘sportsmen’ (and women).
Screw them all. Their arguments are infantile and brutally callous, a real revelation of how the power of fire-power corrupts, just as political power does. An insight into how a troubled mind like Derrick Bird’s can be distorted even further by the House of Parliament he had under his bed. Owning a gun can help make you into a killer, if that’s what you want. It also allows you to bi-pass all democratic social conventions with a simple wave of the hand. If you don’t like democracy, or paying taxes, or persuading people you are right by force of argument, simply blow them away because they would do the same to you. Money can help with all those annoying interventions of other people’s lives on our own too, but guns help get money. And money gets more guns. It’s a harmonious, organic, symbiotic relationship in the capitalist ecology. Isn’t that nice?
Derrick Bird was a very sick man. But not necessarily much more so than most of us today. We live in a very sick society indeed, in case anyone had forgotten. We need people to be ill enough to make the wheels go round. Which means that even the clergyman’s daughter peddling home to her cup of tea after evensong could perpetrate a massacre like this, given a gun. Nobody can guarantee their future sanity. So nobody should have gun to go crazy with unless they can demonstrate that they actually need it for their living.
That would eliminate acres of paperwork, and save money all round, Mr Clegg.
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