Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Seven And Thirty

In New York, tax slaves are officially worth one-quarter of a government overlord.

Now and then you hear someone mention that during the slave era in American history, blacks in the South were worth only three-fifths of a full person. Paradoxically, or perhaps counter-intuitively, it was Southern slave owners who wanted to count black slaves as full people, for the purpose of congressional apportionment (while denying them the vote and most basic human rights). Northern abolitionists wanted blacks not to count at all, in order to deny the South congressional seats, and both sides agreed to a compromise of three-fifths. Regardless of how the fraction was arrived at, the idea of an antebellum slave being worth three-fifths of a full person has stuck. Today in New York, an ordinary citizen is only worth seven-thirtieths of an elite government employee (who is, ironically, still referred to as “a servant of the people”). That is .233 if you do the division. Less than one-quarter; and one-quarter, if your math is rusty, is less than half of three-fifths. How did I arrive at the 7/30 ratio? Because today in New York, the proles are only permitted by their masters to own ammunition magazines with a maximum capacity of seven cartridges. This scant number, while the government elites are guarded by phalanxes of armed bodyguards carrying standard-capacity thirty-round magazines in their own semi-automatic “assault rifles.” Clearly, these elites consider their own lives to be worth four times more than ours.

I doubt that any members of the New York Legislature who voted for the new gun control law understand why the number seven is significant, compared to, say, six, or eight, or ten, or any other number up to and beyond thirty. Let me explain why it matters. Entire broad classes of firearms will be rendered illegal or not, depending on that arbitrarily chosen number.

For example, setting the number of allowable cartridges at seven means that thousands of New Yorkers who brought an M-1 Garand rifle home from World War II and Korea, or their heirs, will never again be allowed to fire them. This was the rifle wielded by Walt Kowalski in the film Grand Torino, when that dangerous old man growled, “Get off my lawn.”

More by Matt Bracken at westernrifleshooters here

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