All in good fun of course, after all, there was laughing (by Daley) and everything! The ensuing conversation between the demagogue of Chicago and the reporter reveals why the Founding Fathers put their faith in us, not in the government.
But even I was a bit taken aback this morning when the mayor grabbed a rifle and threatened to shoot me.
The mayor was holding a press conference to discuss what the city was doing to prepare for the Supreme Court’s expected decision to overturn the city’s gun ban…Guns are one of the mayor’s favorite soapbox topics—he regularly goes out of his way to point out that he despises gun manufacturers and “extremists” like the NRA…
But even supporters of tough gun regulations—myself included—have to admit that it’s not clear how much they reduce violence. Despite having some of the most restrictive laws in the country, Chicago is a national leader in shootings and murders, and the mayor himself noted that “we’ve seen far too many instances in the last few weeks” of firearm violence, including the shooting that left a cop dead last night…
So I asked: since guns are readily available in Chicago even with a ban in place, do you really think it’s been effective?
“Oh!” Daley said. “It’s been very effective!”
He grabbed a rifle, held it up, and looked right at me. He was chuckling but there was no smile.
“If I put this up your—ha!—your butt—ha ha!—you’ll find out how effective this is!”
For a moment the room was very, very quiet. I took a good look at the weapon. It had a long bayonet. (Was it seized during the Civil War?)
“If I put a round up your—ha ha!…Next will be hand grenades, right? We’ll say that hand grenades are OK. I mean, how far can you go in regards to mass weapons? To me, any gun taken off saves thousands of lives in America. I really believe that, I don’t care what people tell me. You have to thank the police officers for seizing all these weapons. We lead the country in seizing weapons. This is unbelievable.”
I had to agree.