A modest proposal

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In view of last Friday’s Supreme Court ruling on Roe v. Wade as well as its ruling Thursday regarding the already sparse restrictions on guns, I have a modest proposal: Every person who wants to buy a gun that can take a life should be subject to the same restrictions and humiliating treatment a woman endured if she wanted an abortion.

Let’s start with a mandatory 48-72 hour waiting period; parental permission (or court order if you are under age); obligatory lectures to ensure that gun advocates fully understand the implications of owning a weapon that can kill; and mandatory screening of a film demonstrating the damage a bullet does to a human body.

In order to buy a gun, people would have to travel hundreds of miles to find the nearest gun shop, take time off from work and stay overnight in a strange town in order to obtain a weapon that can take a life. They might even have to sleep in their car if they are poor.

Having made the decision to own a weapon that kills, gun buyers/owners would be forced to walk through a gauntlet of people screaming at them about “life” and having gruesome pictures showing the damage bullets do to a human body shoved in their face.

If taking “pre-born life” is banned it makes sense to ban weapons that can, and do, take the actual life of thousands of the “already born” every year.

Planned Parenthood clinics provide life-saving low-cost health care for women and babies as well as providing reproductive health care services and contraception for men and they actually do save lives.

Preventing unrestricted access to guns also saves lives.

If access to abortion can be restricted or banned on the grounds that a zygote, blastocyst or an embryo is viable “life,” perhaps those six Supreme Court judges who have broken their promises to uphold precedent or Roe v. Wade should turn their eyes to guns so that millions of the “already born” do not have to fear for their lives as they shop, work and go to school or a cinema.

Kathleen Mary Tepper

Homage to Jonathan Swift’s famous 1729 satirical essay of the same title.


Piberman June 28, 2022 at 5:43 pm

Every years some 600,000 to 800,000 abortions occur (CDC, Wikipedia). Some are late term. That’s equal to yearly death rate for cancer and also for heart disease.

Every year 30,000 die by autos. Another 100,000 by illegal drugs. Some 10,000 violent gun homicides in our large cities. We accept those costs as “doing business”.

FBI UCR and US Treasury Alcohol etc figures find very few gun crimes are committed by licensed adults over 21. Almost all gun homicides involve illegally owned weapons. Some 100 million are estimated in circulation.

Even if all the 300 million legally purchased guns were removed criminals would still have a 100 million at their disposal.

There is no serious analogy between abortion and gun homicides. Abortions in America typically involve the mother’s consent. Even late term when fetuses could survive pre-mature birth. Gun homicides typically take place in our major cities where illegal use/possession oft doesn’t involve any penalty. In CT we have 150 gun homicides annually with relatively few using illegally owned weapons facing jail time.

CT remains an abortion free State. Not affected by the recent SCOTUS decision. CT has also one of the lowest gun homicide rates in the nation. Gun homicides and abortion are completely different social issues. One involves taking a life of another person(s) using firearms. The other involves a mother aborting a child. Ending abortion completely would have no bearing on gun homicides.

Citizens have strong views about gun homicides. But we suffer far more deaths from autos and illegal drugs. Gun homicides are typically done by strangers. Abortion is typically done by request. Apples and oranges.

BTW there are countries like Japan where gun homicides are virtually unknown. So is individual gun ownership. No one seriously studying the issue sees eliminating guns in America as a viable solution to gun homicides. We’re a violent society. Witness TV, movies, web, media, etc. We even love football – a violent sport.

Tom June 28, 2022 at 7:34 pm

The supreme court didn’t ban abortion. The supreme court made no comment regarding what is a viable life. Your article is preposterous. Go and learn what the supreme court actually did and get back to us.

FYI I’m pro-abortion.

Taxpayer June 28, 2022 at 10:39 pm

Your logic makes perfect sense if not for the 2nd amendment. You have to remember that gun owners are typically very paranoid and will go to great lengths to get their weapons while thinking they are “protecting themselves”. Look no further than the incarcerated Ellen Wink who many suspect would be in a better place if she hadn’t obtained a firearm to begin with.

Bob Schumann June 29, 2022 at 6:13 am

Many suspect Ellen Wink would have certianly gone “to a better place” if the guy she murdered also had a gun.

David McCarthy June 29, 2022 at 9:09 am

I had to wait several months to get my permit to buy a gun while living in Norwalk. Granted once I received that, I could buy one in a matter of hours, considering the background check. Of course being of legal age is a requirement as is a day long course run by a state certified trainer. So, regardless of the facts (abortion hasn’t been banned, day after pills are on Amazon, gun rights are actually in the constitution) as hard as you’ve tried, you’ve described what potential gun owners already face….absent the hundred mile drive, which, let’s face it…no woman is facing that, either, given the number of orgs willing to mail abortion inducing pills. This issue is still being used to fearmonger and raise money….

Priscilla Feral June 29, 2022 at 10:13 am

“A Modest Proposal’ is fun to read, and its arguments outweigh a pundit’s who imagines we should be doomed to live in a violent culture.

Japan’s, Europe’s and Canada’s gun regulations exist because they don’t want to be a gun-addicted society flooded with too many firearms because the upshot of that is what we suffer with in the U.S.

Turning to health care and women’s rights, the insane Supreme Court majority’s catastrophic decision to overturn Roe v Wade endangers the lives of millions of females, with emphasis on poor women and women of color. And it’s the first time in U.S. history of the the Supreme Court that a fundamental constitutional right has been yanked away. The right of women to make decisions about abortion, contraception and the right of privacy including same-sex marriage, will be on the ballot in November. We fight until November and call on Congress to immediately pass the Women’s Health Protection Act to restore nationwide protections for abortion.

David Muccigrosso June 29, 2022 at 11:35 am

Making a bunch of false equivalences to support your own sincerely-held belief isn’t an “homage” to Swift’s satire. It’s just rank mimicry.

Swift was making an intentionally extremely outlandish proposal to mock elites who wanted to treat Catholics capriciously.

Kathleen is mostly proposing things that real gun-control advocates already regularly propose. She had 1-2 that went outside the Overton Window, but Swift was *entirely* out of it.

If this were English class, I’d give it a C; the only things that save Kathleen the D or F are the competent grammar & spelling, and that she demonstrated at least a superficially complete understanding of the source material that I’d expect from your average public high school senior.

Ben G June 29, 2022 at 12:28 pm

Let me start by saying I FULLY support abortion access for women. Even late term so long as the mothers life is at risk or there is some other major factor.

Let me end by saying this is one of the most absolutely preposterous things I have ever read. The Supreme Court didn’t ban abortion, it let the states decide their own laws since there is no specific mention of abortion in the constitution, very much unlike guns which are explicitly protected by the second amendment.

over 50 years to codify abortion access via a federal law and it wasn’t done, even when the “pro-abortion” party had majorities in Congress to do so. There is your problem.

RFN June 29, 2022 at 1:04 pm

Hmmm- lets not forget that many millions of law abiding gun owners are Pro-Abortion. In today’s polarized society, your common sense plan may be a ticket to changing their stance…..

Kathleen Mary Tepper June 29, 2022 at 2:46 pm

My essay was SATIRE, not false equivalency, there is a difference!
The poem below is not satire.

To live in America is truly amazing
In shops and schools, you’ll find guns ablazing
The US is proud of the 2nd Amendment
But the Founders could hardly have been transcendent.
Could they envision a land with no weapons restriction?
Where guns are now the national addiction?
No, they wrote a precatory clause
Requiring citizens to obey sensible laws.
A “well regulated” militia is what they meant,
Not an AR-15 sold to some malcontent.
The NRA loves military weapons a lot,
You know, the ones that blow holes in tiny tots.
They don’t want gun regulation to be even cursory,
Though those guns kill kids barely out of the nursery.
It’s people who kill, not guns, says the NRA
Guns just allow “people” to have their own way.
The obsession with violence doesn’t stop at our shore
Our weapons of destruction bring “shock and awe”,
To countries that have done us no harm,
Though it gives merchants of death a shot in the arm.
The military industrial complex of which we were warned
Has, without thought, been utterly scorned.
And then, at the end of each brutal day,
We hear pundits remind us to hold vigils and pray
To stop the carnage, I would pray (if only I could),
Sadly, so far, prayers do no damn good.

Justataxpayer June 30, 2022 at 6:02 am

What I find most troubling about this article are the comments afterwards surrounding Ellen Fink. I wasn’t there when that shooting happened. I don’t know here by more than name. Some real deep seated haters.

RFN June 30, 2022 at 8:44 am

If you wrote a similar poem regarding legalizing abortion – you could just copy the last two sentences from the poem:

“To stop the carnage, I would pray (if only I could),
Sadly, so far, prayers do no damn good.”

Food for thought…..

James Cahn June 30, 2022 at 11:12 am

My false equivalence comment was a joke.

In “A Modest Proposal” Swift claims to solve the burden of poor people and their children on the rich by suggesting that we can eat the children. He goes on, hilariously, to point out that there will be a bumper crop of kids about 9 months after Lent which will serve the double benefit of not only being able to have plenty of roast children to nibble on but also helping to throttle the population of Catholics.

They say a joke isn’t a joke if you have to explain it. I assumed everyone had read “A Modest Proposal” and it was obvious. My mistake. Apologies.

Kenneth Werner June 30, 2022 at 12:20 pm

RFN, it may be “that many millions of law abiding gun owners are Pro-Abortion,” or maybe not. What is your source for that statement?

RFN June 30, 2022 at 6:08 pm

Simple statistics:
2020 census 258 million adults in US
30% of adults in US own a firearm ( Pew Research )
Thus 77.4 million adults in the US own a firearm
Latest Gallup Poll : 55% of US are now pro choice
Assuming the Gallup and other polls are not deselecting
firearms owners in their polling, 55% of the 77.4 million
firearms owners would be Pro-Life. Therefore 43 million firearms owners would be Pro-Life. If there was massive error in all the polls and statistics there would still be millions of firearms owners who support pro-life.

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