What’s Wrong With Those Texans?

That’s the question the Associated Press asks, following the school shootings in Santa Fe: “School shooting may not bring change to gun-loving Texas.”

Guns are so hard-wired into Texas culture that last week’s deadly rampage at Santa Fe High School is considered unlikely to result in any significant restrictions on access to weapons in the Lone Star State.
[T]he state’s 20-year dominance by the Republican Party all but guarantees the meetings will be dominated by calls to boost school security and “harden” campuses — an idea backed by the NRA — instead of demands for gun restrictions, said Cal Jillson, political science professor at Southern Methodist University.

What’s interesting is that the AP never hints at what “gun restrictions” the State of Texas ought to adopt. Indeed, it becomes obvious that the AP reporter, speaking for liberals and the mainstream of the Democratic Party, doesn’t much care: any restrictions will do.

In the Santa Fe case, the murderer, Dimitrios Pagourtzis, was too young to buy firearms, so tightening of firearms purchasing procedures wouldn’t have applied to him. The guns he used belonged to his father who, as far as we know, purchased them legally and would have been able to do so under any regime that has been proposed. The AP actually admits that the “gun restrictions” advocated by the Left would have done no good:

Dimitrios Pagourtzis, 17, is jailed on murder charges in Friday’s attack. Authorities said the Santa Fe High student opened fire with his father’s shotgun and .38-caliber handgun.

Gun control advocates around the country have long pressed for such measures as expanded background checks and a ban on assault rifles and high-capacity magazines, but such measures would probably have had no effect on the Santa Fe High shooting.

“Probably?” Those measures certainly would have been ineffective. But it doesn’t matter: in the AP’s eyes, resistance on the part of Texans to taking futile steps is blameworthy, while the one action that probably will work, most of the time–guarding and hardening schools as potential targets–is dismissed as “backed by the NRA.”

What the AP essentially admits is that virtue signaling is an end in itself, divorced from any intent to actually achieve any positive result. But then, why, exactly, is it virtue?

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