A Dragonfly in the Ointment

Ramblings and Rants


Marysville, California, USA
March 11
Title? No one said there would be titles!
No, thanks, I'm a loner
I'm 45 years old, married for 22 of them, and the mother of 2 teenagers. I'm a software test engineer by profession, and rather geeky. I've spent almost my entire life in Northern CA.

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JULY 23, 2010 11:43AM

Armed Society, Part 3, Another One Bites the Dust

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I have been remiss in not posting more about the case the of the woman who was killed by police after she aimed at gun at a census worker and then the cops. My previous posts are here and here.

A few weeks ago the corner determined that the woman had mixed alcohol and anti- depressants. She had also apparently talked of suicide, though the corner stopped short of calling this a suicide by cop. However it does not take a genius to know that mixing drug and booze is a very, very bad idea.

Now we have the census worker’s side of the story. Basically, the census worker was just trying to do her job and had the crap scared out of her by a drunk, belligerent, armed nut case.

Just what was going though that woman’s head as she pulled a gun on an unarmed Census worker, we will never know. Was she afraid of crime? Is that why she carried a gun to the door? Or was she a Fox News fan who had been whipped into a frenzy of antigovernment hatred and pulling a gun on one of THEM gave her some small feeling of power when she was basically feeling powerless?

Prior to this article, many commentators had put forth the theory that the dead woman was simply protecting her property. Unfortunately, the gun lobby has many people convinced that there is a criminal around every corner and behind every bush, despite the general crime statistics that say crime is down. The fiction that one must be armed and ready at all times is going to lead to more incidences like this. This attitude has resulted in armed and untrained people are wandering the streets, convinced that if any bad thing should happen they can go all Dirty Harry on some perp’s ass. Unfortunately the lack of training means that they couldn’t recognize a real perp without a nametag and think whipping their gun out is the solution to every problem.

The other theory is that it’s Glenn Beck’s fault. This area is so Red it’s more like vermillion. Tea Party rallies are a popular past time, and my family likes to joke that President Obama only got 3 votes in this county, mine, Mr Flys’ and our son’s. Despite the fact that the local air force base is the major employer, and a sizeable percentage of the population is retired military, this is anti-government territory, and it will be until the black guy isn’t running things anymore. Since the dead woman made the remark that they weren’t doing the census, this theory might hold some water.

Regardless of her reasons, a depressing number of commenters on the newspaper’s forum think that the woman didn’t do anything wrong; that it’s perfectly OK to point a gun at someone in your home. Frankly, I think the world is little bit safer now that one of them has taken one for the team. I know the dead woman is not the kind of person I would want as neighbor. Hopefully a few of these people will be forced to confront their idea that a gun is the solution to every problem before someone blows away a kid selling wrapping for the school fundraiser.

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Thanks for bringing this to light. It seems that where there are multiple, and shaded, explanations of how and why something like this occurs, there are always those who are eager to massage the facts to fit their polemic.

Maybe we'll never know the true answer here, but we do know that, by implication, census workers have been demonized by propagandists desperate for new enemies to present on next week's show.
Hi Steve, thanks for the comment. Quite a few of the local do feel like the demonization of the census workers by certain elements have played a part in this drama since those elements are quite active around here. Unfortunately the woman’ family is too busy blaming the cops to give us much insight into her state of mind. They were apparently unaware the she was taking anti-depressants.