If your husband or boyfriend goes shopping and comes home with, say, a slow cooker, you stand a chance of getting supper. If, on the other hand, he comes home with a gun, you stand a chance of getting shot.
Me, I’d rather take my chances with a slow cooker type of guy any time. Not that guys are my thing. No, really. They aren’t. I swear.
Don’t get me wrong. I like the idea of guns. I like the idea of twitching my index finger and a split second later, 300m away, a paedophile’s head explodes like a pumpkin. Not that pumpkins explode. Although it’s not impossible. Perhaps exploding pumpkins are the Pentagon’s new secret weapon in the war on terror. Cheaper than drones but slower and not as manoeuverable.
Speaking for myself, because nobody else will let me speak for them, I would prefer to see a situation where we returned to throwing rocks at one another.
Our penchant for resolving disputes through the hurling of projectiles began two hundred thousand years ago when we evolved into Homo sapiens. Or, as the lunatic fringe would have it, six thousand years ago when an invisible policeman made a man from dust and a woman from the dude’s spare rib.
Sure, I’ve thought about getting a gun at different points in my life. I grew up around guns. No, wait. Those weren’t guns. I don’t know what the hell they were, but I still see their rat-like faces grinning at me when I close my eyes at night.
My father had a gun. Two guns. He was known as Tommy “Two-Guns” Trovato. No, he wasn’t. His name isn’t even Tommy. I don’t know why I said that. But he did have two guns.
One was a .22 rifle and the other a Walther PPK. He told me it was the same gun James Bond used. So when he first invited me to join him on a shoot, I almost wet myself with excitement.
Would the girls have names like Pussy Galore? I hoped so. I also hoped they would be gentle with me. Even though I was big for my age, I was still only nine.
The shoot turned out to be three Castle beer cans against a sand dune near the mouth of the Umgeni River. He hadn’t brought the rifle because he thought me too weak to lift it. I still am.
“Here,” he said, thrusting the Walther PPK into my tiny hand. “Pretend those cans are Soviet troops trying to outflank the German army at the battle of Stalingrad.” He’s a bit of a Nazi at heart. But then, deep down, aren’t we all?
I pulled the trigger and the metal beast barked and bucked, almost breaking my delicate wrist. It felt good. Not because I was shooting, but because it was such an exhilarating example of cause and effect.
Pull on this little thing and, instantaneously, something wild and inexplicable happens. It’s why boys love magic. It’s also why they love masturbating.
“Stand closer,” he said. I kept missing. It was ridiculous. I was wasting the entire month’s food budget on ammunition but my father wouldn’t let me stop.
“Squeeze the trigger, don’t pull it!” he shouted, steadying my grip. “Let’s try a bit closer.”
With the barrel eventually resting lightly against the can, I pulled the trigger. This wasn’t target practice. It was an execution. He never took me shooting again.
Years later, I redeemed myself by killing half a million FAPLA troops while parachuting from a burning helicopter and then, riding down the Kunene River on the back of a crocodile, I drove the Cubans out of Angola and brought the National Party government to the negotiating table. You can thank me later.
You know what I really like? Knives. Throw a gun at someone and you’ll just make him angrier. But throw a knife and there’s a chance he will think you’re some kind of Triad-trained knife-fighter and take cover, giving you time to run away and hide.
Also, knives are shiny. I like shiny things.
We are all capable of killing. Some, like the British royal family, do it for sport. Which is silly, really. Foxes contribute more to the economy than some of the yobbos who sponge off the welfare system.
Don’t give me that. They are not victims of circumstance. They are fat, lazy bastards. I know because I spent a fair bit of time in the UK doing jobs they didn’t want to do because the dole paid more.
We need to ban guns. Yeah, yeah. I hear you. Do that and them yellow-eyed motherfuckers are the only ones gonna be left holdin’ guns ‘coz they don’t care for no motherfuckin’ bans.
What you do, then, is ramp up the sentencing laws. Whether you’re bust for housebreaking, speeding or littering – if you’re found with a gun, you go to jail for 25 years.
We might need another 30 or 40 prisons, so build them in the Karoo. There’s nothing else going on out there. Shell can put them to work in the fracking fields.
Or don’t ban guns. Instead, the government embarks on a campaign to arm the nation.
Indigent families and the mentally handicapped qualify for state-subsidised guns. Government schools offer weapons training as part of the curriculum. Death skills, perhaps, as a counterpoint to life skills.
Bottle stores run mid-week specials. Trigger-Happy Tuesdays! Buy a .38 Special and get a bottle of Klipdrift free!
Forget about background checks. If you can tie your shoelaces, you’re eligible to own a gun. If you don’t have shoes, you will have to perform some other competency test.
You could be asked to count to ten, for instance. If you can’t get further than five, you’re fit only for a small caliber pistol. Go all the way to ten and you can have an AK-47.
Shooting someone when you’re drunk will be considered a premedicated act and no charges will be pressed.
Similarly, murder and homicide cases will not be prosecuted if the suspect uses the infallible “I-thought-you-were-a-burglar” defence.
In the interests of justice, this will apply to everyone.
For example, a bank robber shoots a security guard and is arrested. If the robber says, “I thought he was a burglar”, the police will be compelled to release him.
Let’s start by making Mshini wam our national anthem.