Gunpowder and Alcohol Don’t Mix

That was a bromide the NRA spammed around in its literature back when I was learning about firearms as a pre-teen.  Having no interest in or experience with booze, I found it confusing; now it makes a lot of sense, whether or not the slogan actually affects anyone’s behavior.  Gun violence is mostly just one form of alcohol violence.

Why is this relevant? Well, those carefree college years in Texas are about to get a lot more bracing and focused, as the state is ready to allow guns everywhere on campus, open and concealed.  I take my opinions about firearms and risk from Mark, pretty much as given, and I’m guessing this won’t produce an explosion of gun violence generally.  However, in Waco, there was just a rehearsal for what happens when drunk young men in cult-like exclusive organizations convene with lots of guns around.  I have pretty high odds that Texas will enthrall us with a fraternity party bloodbath in the not-too-distant future.

[Cross-posted at The Reality-Based Community]

Washington Monthly - Donate Today and your gift will be doubled!

Support Nonprofit Journalism

If you enjoyed this article, consider making a donation to help us produce more like it. The Washington Monthly was founded in 1969 to tell the stories of how government really works—and how to make it work better. Fifty years later, the need for incisive analysis and new, progressive policy ideas is clearer than ever. As a nonprofit, we rely on support from readers like you.

Yes, I’ll make a donation

Michael O’Hare

Michael O'Hare is a Professor of Public Policy at the University of California, Berkeley.