Opinions, Context & Ideas from the TPM Editors TPM Editor's Blog

The Red Dawn Fantasy

Red Dawn of course refers to the very entertaining film in which The Wolverines, a bunch of kids from a rural western community, heroically engage a division of Cuban paratroopers and their Soviet advisors who invade the United States at the start of World War III.

If you ask those who insist they must own one or more assault rifles and semi-automatic pistols with high capacity magazines, the answer you'll hear over and over again is: I want to be ready to defend America against the Commies, the terrorists, the immigrant invaders, the United Nations, and yes, even the government of the United States of America. That's the Red Dawn fantasy.

It's time we saw it for the paranoid delusion it is, and stop giving craziness the legitimacy of the Second Amendment. The gun debate shouldn't be about whether we need armed guards in every school, movie theater, and place of worship. I shouldn't be about hunting rifles or weapons for home or personal defense. Take the Red Dawn fantasy out of the equation, and we'll have no problem coming up with a sensible gun policy in America. But as long as it persists, and as long as we let a delusional minority dictate the terms of the debate, we're accepting more mass shootings as the price we have to pay.

About The Author


Josh Marshall is editor and publisher of TalkingPointsMemo.com.