I got my gun, a .22 bolt action rifle, when I was thirteen. My father insisted that I first had to take and pass an NRA gun-ownership class. Seemed reasonable to me. I still have that gun.

Today, if I want to do people’s nails or cut their hair, I have to take classes, pass a test and get licensed. If I want to fix toilets, same thing. Drive a car, same thing. But many people say that it’s just fine to let anyone — anyone — buy a deadly weapon without any training or proof that they know how to handle it safely and that they are not paranoid schizophrenics.

How to you categorize that mindset — crazy or stupid or both? In a way, but not really. Those people actually want guns so that they will have the ability to wage war against the government. The “self-protection” they say they need the guns for is code for their having weapons to use against the feared “black helicopters” and “UN invaders” and “big government.” Scratch a “no-rules” gun person and you will reveal, at some level, an anarchist.

Graduate of Stanford University & U.C. Berkeley Law School. Author of 17 novels and over 200 Medium columns on Economics, Politics, Law, Humor & Satire.

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