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William Carter: Guns in City Hall

It’s being discussed among Our Leaders the possibility of overturning the ban on guns in City Hall and I couldn’t be happier because, by God, as a City worker I’m tired of not being allowed to tote around a physical representation of how much of a natural-born badass I am whenever I’m summoned to Human Resources to pee in a cup to prove I am – still – peyote-free or when I’m running extension cords for the annual lighting of the City Christmas tree.
 
How else are people expected to be impressed with the facts I’ve seen every single Bruce Willis and Clint Eastwood movie ever made at least 18 times apiece and that I’m pretty sure I know Kung-Fu when my soft-bellied, bald and bespectacled outer appearance belies those facts? Allowing me to carry a gun under my City-issued, fluorescent-orange vest will clue everyone in to my inherent manliness and, too, only enhance your, Dear Citizen, feelings of safety in the presence of my should-otherwise-be-obvious-but-obviously-isn’t-obvious bad-assery. 
 
Are we forgetting, too, people, the countless incidences of James Bond-like villains bent on world domination beginning their quest at a discussion of right-of-way easements in Our Town during a board meeting who could have easily been stopped dead in their tracks if only each and every alderman or some other City employee had been locked and loaded at the time? I haven’t forgotten because I can, and will, if pushed, argue that the absolute absence of such incidences up to this point in time does, in fact, prove them to be countless. And who among us can assure it’s not just a matter of time before some armed and irate H.O.A. gets tired of mailbox restrictions placed on their neighborhood by City Hall and decides they just “ain’t gonna take it no more,” and retaliate with force? 
 
No one … that’s who.
 
Another thing we must consider is the peace of mind of the men and women in Our Town who work daily by the motto of “To Protect and Serve” – our police officers. Their reliance on their constant training and mandatory certification on the firing range has to be small comfort – small, I tell you – compared to their knowledge that back-up in a fire-fight from a civilian in the room – an alderman, maybe who has as much training as he/she could find time for on weekends between soccer practice and scraping that stuff off the grill and making sure all of our developers are well-fed and taken care of – is only seconds away if needed. Don’t think our police officers blithely underestimate or don’t appreciate the value of crossfire from an undetermined source while focused on the perpetrator of the determined source in a crowded room of – mostly- unarmed people, either, because I’m pretty sure it can be proven statistically that in a situation like that, more bad guys get shot than good guys. 
 
Whatever the case, freedom ain’t free, folks.
 
This column, though, is not about guns or gun control but, rather, about Our Leader’s courage in taking steps to protect all of us from things that have a miniscule chance of happening by scaring the bejesus out of all the folks who, naively, thought it was okay – natural, even – to walk through the world without worrying they might be shot in City Hall by an armed, total stranger who was mad about his water bill or that he couldn’t get a permit to build a man-cave on his own property.
 
The following is a only a partial list of other, equally as threatening things we didn’t know we needed to be protected from that I would strongly encourage Our Brave Leaders to address after they’ve successfully taken away our reasonable expectation not to be shot in City Hall:
 
• Sky-divers whose chutes don’t open
• A re-make of “Cool Hand Luke” starring Justin Beiber
• Banana pudding made with off-brand vanilla wafers
• Growling crotch crickets
• The possible cancellation of “The Walking Dead”
• Ugly puppies
• People who get too close when they’re talking to you
• Old doughnuts
• Bart Durham commercials
• Salad bars
 
I could go on but I’m experiencing a weird drop in my testosterone-level.
 
Maybe I need to re-load.
 
Either that, or watch “Die Hard”… again. 
 
William Carter is a longtime Franklin city employee and published author. He may be contacted at wcarterfranklin@aol.com.

Posted on: 6/20/2013

 
 

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