As far as the New York Times and the rest of American Progressives are concerned, those Americans who insist that they want to exercise their Second Amendment rights for self-protection are delusional and, quite possibly, nascent psychopathic killers. Guns are bad. Really, really bad. The evidence is irrelevant because . . . yes, guns are bad.
Except that guns aren’t always bad. While your average Progressive understands that they’re obviously a bad idea when people use them to protect themselves, they’re a very good — indeed, an innovative idea — when Africans come together with guns to protect elephants.
I am not delusional (nor am I a nascent psychopathic killer). The New York Times practically vibrates with excitement as it describes the way Kenyans have armed themselves and come together to protect elephants from poachers:
From Tanzania to Cameroon, tens of thousands of elephants are being poached each year, more than at any time in decades, because of Asia’s soaring demand for ivory. Nothing seems to be stopping it, including deploying national armies, and the bullet-riddled carcasses keep stacking up. Scientists say that at this rate, African elephants could soon go the way of the wild American bison.
But in this stretch of northern Kenya, destitute villagers have seized upon an unconventional solution that, if replicated elsewhere, could be the key to saving thousands of elephants across Africa, conservationists say. In a growing number of communities here, people are so eager, even desperate, to protect their wildlife that civilians with no military experience are banding together, grabbing shotguns and G3 assault rifles and risking their lives to confront heavily armed poaching gangs.
Villagers are also turning against poachers because the illegal wildlife trade fuels crime, corruption, instability and intercommunal fighting. Here in northern Kenya, poachers are diversifying into stealing livestock, printing counterfeit money and sometimes holding up tourists. Some are even buying assault rifles used in ethnic conflicts.
The conservation militias are often the only security forces around, so they have become de facto 911 squads, rushing off to all sorts of emergencies in areas too remote for the police to quickly gain access to and often getting into shootouts with poachers and bandits.
“This isn’t just about animals,” said Paul Elkan, a director at the Wildlife Conservation Society, who is trying to set up community ranger squads in South Sudan modeled on the Kenyan template. “It’s about security, conflict reconciliation, even nation building.”
You can read the whole thing here but, if I understand it correctly, the Times isn’t just excited about the elephants (although that’s important). The Times is also thrilled about is the fact that, when African villagers form armed militias, they can protect themselves from crime, economic destitution, and hostile neighbors — all as a byproduct of protecting elephants.
Hey, I’ve got an idea!
Let’s import a few hundred elephants into various American cities, such as Chicago, Detroit, Washington, D.C., Los Angeles, etc.. Then, when Obama and his team go after American guns, we no longer have to rely on something as outdated as the Second Amendment to protect American gun ownership (it’s just for muskets, for Gawd’s sake!). Nor do we have to drag out all those tired old statistics showing that, as John Lott trenchantly puts it, “More Guns, Less Crime.”
Instead, when the Obama government shows up on our doorsteps, demanding that we disarm ourselves, we can talk in language the Progressives understand: “If you take away our guns, hundreds of elephants will die needlessly! Use a gun; save an elephant.”