There’s a post over on Metroblogging New Orleans that is causing a lot of fuss, in part because it’s advocating shooting looters on sight. I personally think that’s a bit extreme, but I’m not there in that situation and don’t know how bad it really is. There’s more discussion in the comments about what that means and what is considered a looter but it’s a pretty sparky statement none the less. What I can say is that bands of armed looters roaming the streets is a damn good argument that the general public should be armed, and able to defend themselves. I think it’s fairly clear to anyone reading first hand accounts that it’s a total mess there, complete governmental failure to protect the people. Honestly, between knowing how quickly things degraded in Florida last year and riots that have happened here in LA, I have little faith that if something like this happened anywhere else in the US things would be any different. In LA for example, if there was no power, no water, no phones, no grid at all, I don’t think I’d feel secure that the already-stretched-too-thin police force would be able to protect me, or anyone else. And with the majority of the public having never seen a gun in person, I think most people would be fair game for anyone who decided they were going to go out and start taking things. I wonder how that situation would differ if the location was Switzerland where every person age 18 and over is required to own (and know how to operate) a gun. Of course that’s the extreme opposite and I’m sure there’s some middle ground that makes more sense but it’s an interesting situation unfolding right before our eyes here. I mean, basically, a huge city that was full of people last week now doesn’t exist, and in it’s place is outright anarchy.