Mardi Gras Without The Ammo

A relative of mine sent me a joke on Mardi Gras morning via email that at first glance, seemed pretty funny, in light of how much we use digital media to communicate:

“A man received the following text from his neighbor: I am so sorry Bob.  I’ve been riddled with guilt and I have to confess.I have been tapping your wife, day and night when you’re not around.  In fact, more than you. I’m not getting any at home, but that’s no excuse.I can no longer live with the guilt and I hope you will accept my sincerest apology with my promise that it won’t happen again. The man, anguished and betrayed, went into his bedroom, grabbed his gun, and without a word, shot his wife and killed her. A few moments later, a second text came in: Damn autocorrect.  I meant ‘wifi,’ not ‘wife.'”

Yeah, I laughed.

But I immediately started thinking how many people have flown off the handle, pulled out their guns and done something in anger that was dumb, and off-the-cuff, without thinking about it.

Or how many people-usually young men-have a beef with someone else over an unpaid bill, a girl (or guy!), or a drug deal gone wrong that they carry a gun and use it, at will.

St. Charles Avenue shooting during Mardi Gras in 2009. (Photo: Toledo Blade)

I’m assuming that’s what happened over Mardi Gras weekend, when there were three reported shootings (two of them fatal) in downtown New Orleans, leaving one person seriously wounded and two young men dead, at a rap concert in Mardi Gras World.

I think that’s what always happens; it’s just too easy, too convenient to acquire and keep a deadly weapon.

I’m sure that the pro-gun, second amendment, NRA-brainwashed people will jump all over my contention that we do not have to have guns as an integral part of our culture., especially in Louisiana: “Sportsmen’s Paradise.” It’s so very clear that we would have a lot less violence in our city-and our country-without being able to possess guns, legally or illegally.

This morning, there was a full page ad in the local paper for a gun store in Prairieville, that advertised “sport rifles” (something pretty damned similar to an AK-47) that were on sale with “bonus” 800 rounds of ammo. A “sport rifle”? How many rounds of ammo are required to take down a deer—that is, if you must hunt for sport?

Please. This is just ridiculous.

Selling weapons and ammunition like these to the public should be criminalized. Why are these weapons legally sold?

We’re lucky that this year the gun violence was contained to a couple of incidents—at least the ones that the media reported (I tend to think there are more, but they’re not being reported). There were no shootings on St. Charles Avenue this year, thank goodness. Personally, and I’m certainly not making any predictions here, but all it would take is one crazed moron to shoot someone on a float. I’d bet we’d see some changes then.

It’s my dream to see New Orleans become a gun-free city. That way we could all go to concerts, Mardi Gras parades, and walk down the street without being afraid some jerk won’t be using his handgun—or his AK-47 with its 800 rounds. And I’ll bet not only locals but tourists will breathe a big sigh of relief.

Music, not guns. Celebrations, not ammo.


  • dk in pa

    You said it perfectly, Jan. Living outside Philly it’s shootings all the time. And there is a huge suburban deer problem. But like you said…how many bullets do you need to take out a deer. And you can buy it all at Walmart. I saw camo Easter eggs today. Camo is sportsman..but originally war clothing. Something’s not right about that.