So, in news that the events at Virginia Tech make infinitely less humorous, David Light, Yale ’09, was recently arrested for a bunch of–or what the pretentious would call “a cache”–of guns at the frat house he was living in (Sidebar 1: For anybody in the Yale know, chalk that up to one more shady thing that went down at Beta. I’m just saying). I mean, if the guy hadda had nine glocks, that would have been more than ample reason to throw the bracelets on him, but he was well-prepared for any possible scenario in which he’d need to pull a Kurt Russell and escape from the Elm City. We’re talking an AR-15, an AK, some other Russian rifle that I’m sure does damage and a shotgun with the accompanying four to five thousands rounds of ammunition. And that’s just the stuff you need two hands to hold. Of course, what weapons possession charges would be complete without the discovery of hazardous chemicals? Mr. Light definitely covered all his bases.
Now, the popular and easy thing to do is call this guy a psycho. I find that to be a little too easy; sure, the guy had weapons, some of which were illegal. But if we go on the logic that this man–as far as the law is concerned– who had his guns discovered after acting like a reallllllllllll asshole in his house must be crazy, I find myself wondering who should have guns in their possession. Am I saying the guy did the responsible thing? No, he was, at the very least, acting like a drunken idiot, and while he should be prosecuted for illegal possession of weapons that does not mean he is clearly insane or was bent on shooting up Yale. Honestly, I’d say he was a dumbass with some of the world’s worst judgment and timing.
But let’s get back to my basic question. Who should be allowed to have guns? Who isn’t crazy if it’s found out they are gun enthusiasts? When I think about it, I can’t think of too many people who I feel comfortable having guns, cops included. And that has nothing to do with the police brutality angle and everything to do with the fact that, for the most part, those cats cannot shoot and don’t have the discipline to discriminate and keep their heads when the shit goes down. Gun enthusiast plus terrible decision does not automatically equal crazy person. Sometimes it just equals stupid.
While I find it extremely plausible that this dude is a perfectly well-adjusted person that did something reaaaaaaallllllllyyyyyyyyy reckless and uncalled for, I am right now going to completely reverse field in order to make a point. This guy could have been a complete pyscho just waiting for the streets being full during Camp Yale so that he could take some target practice at innocent people from an elevated position. And with weapons store like he had, it would be a minute before that situation got neutralized. If I recall, the kid at Va Tech only had two handguns and he did a gruesome amount of damage. And let us not forget that Mr. Light, a science enthusiast, had some hazardous chemicals in his possession for who knows what purpose. Even if he was completely harmless as a person, the scenario makes him completely dangerous. Possession of illegal weapons is just not a good look. And you know who’d probably agree with me? Everyone who knew and didn’t say boo about it.
The thing that nobody seems to be discussing but that I find the most troubling is that multiple people knew about these weapons and didn’t say shit, not until he started acting crazy. Granted, I don’t expect everyone to have a working knowledge of Connecticut statutes, but I’m willing to bet that any state that has Blue Laws probably doesn’t allow guerrilla revolutionary items in their midst. I just have my doubts. No; people knew about this and didn’t say anything because he was an involved guy who didn’t make his love of weapons a secret and was a “top notch” student. If he was nuts, all he had to do was hide in plain sight because nobody wants to be the one to point the finger.
Believe it or not, we live in an extremely polite society. Unless the decision to say something is easy, people will remain silent. Indeed, “Stop Snitchin’” is nothing new. Reading the Yale Daily article on it was extremely illuminating in that regard. Consider:
* The guy who eventually called the cops knew about the guns several days earlier. He was a a visitor, and you can probably make the argument that he did more than anyone considering, after hearing gun shots and seeing Light withe gun–which Light said was filled with blanks, he attempted to go the polite route and talk the situation out privately before alerting the authorities. All things considered, I don’t think that’s so terrible.
* Another student, who didn’t know Light like that, saw him walking up the stairs of the house with two rifles and saw another high-powered rifle which he felt were suspicious. Did he say anything to anybody at all? No.
* A guy who lived above him freshman year had heard about the guns from Light’s suitemates. He apparently kept the collection in his dorm room. Just for clarification, it should be mentioned that guns aren’t exactly allowed at all on the university premises.
I find the third point to be the most appalling. Now, don’t let all this outrage about not speaking up fool you. I do still believe in keeping your mouth shut when appropriate. I’m gonna have to go ahead and say that bullet point three was not a shut mouth situation. Call me a snitch or whatever, but, if FRESHMAN YEAR a mufucka I don’t know like that has a weapons stockpile taking space where my shoes should go, I’m gonna holler at him (very, very nicely). If he didn’t remove the shit, I’d have to let the right people know because…I don’t have much of an interest in having my face shot. I like my face. And I’d rather not trust the fact that homeboy was just a “weapons enthusiast” and keep my face than trust it and one day find myself breathing out the back of my head.
You know what’s most frightening about the whole thing? Despite all of my teeth-gnashing, I find it utterly terrifying that any one of those people could have been me. I could have easily been the person who said, “Nah, Dave’s a good dude,” or “Shit, Dave’s my boy and none of my boys are crazy like that.” Granted, I probably would’ve suggested he not keep the guns in the crib, but, if he was personable enough, I probably would have left it at that. Would’ve thought it was a great story to tell other people. Tell ‘em this dude I know collects guns, even has a mufuckin’ AK. Of course I’d preface the story, assure people that he wasn’t some nut–’cause you know if he was or appeared to be, that’d make me a nut by association, then I’d launch into it, probably sprinkling in one of Dave’s rifle range stories for effect. Then, before moving on to some subject or another, we’d chuckleand say something like, “Man. Dave’s a wild boy.” Crazy, right? Peace to Edmund Burke.
Penultimate Thought: Michael Vick apparently doesn’t have an interest in playing professional football either.
Final Thought: I sort of miss not having a cell phone.