2nd AmendmentDaily Duh

Cell Phones Ain’t Guns

Today’s Dai­ly Duh comes to you from Slate via Han­nah Riley, and it’s a fas­ci­nat­ing dis­play of cog­ni­tive dis­so­nance:

In most fed­er­al and state pris­ons and jails, cell phones are a big no-no; get­ting caught with one can add years to your sen­tence. Han­nah Riley thinks that’s got­ta stop, and she actu­al­ly has some pret­ty good points before she cross­es the Duh Coun­ty line:

  • If you’re serv­ing a 6‑month sen­tence for some mis­de­meanor, but get caught with a cell phone, adding 12 years to the sen­tence is insane.
  • Prison erodes and destroys rela­tion­ships with friends and fam­i­ly, which rais­es the recidi­vism rate.
  • A sher­iff in South Car­oli­na bud­get­ed mon­ey to pro­vide jail inmates with cheap cell phones, claim­ing it increas­es safe­ty.
  • Yes, inmates can and do use unmon­i­tored phones for run­ning gangs, smug­gling drugs, extor­tion or arrang­ing mur­ders.
  • But pro­hi­bi­tion is use­less. If you’re in prison and you want a phone, you can get one.
  • Also, cell phones are just amoral tools. It’s sil­ly to blame a tool for bad things peo­ple do with it.
  • To sum up: The pos­i­tive social ben­e­fits of cell phones in prison out­weigh the neg­a­tives. We should seek ways to lever­age the good things and squelch the bad things.

These argu­ments sound an awful lot like 2nd Amend­ment sup­port­ers say­ing guns are just tools, and it’s sil­ly to go after the tools rather than the bad guys, and we can’t abol­ish guns, so let’s find oth­er ways to reduce crime, and by the way: the pos­i­tive ben­e­fits of civil­ian gun own­er­ship far out­weigh their crim­i­nal usage.

So what does Slate have to say about guns? Any­thing pos­i­tive, or even open to dis­cus­sion? It is to laugh. We have now crossed the Duh Coun­ty line.

Slate loves gun con­trol, and they have a seri­ous hardon for the AR-15. Search for “AR-15” on Slate; I did and found more than 40 arti­cles say­ing:

(Sor­ry; I mean “Awomen.)

Con­sis­ten­cy, thy name is not Slate.

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