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Freedom, yeah!

September 8, 2013 - Harry Eagar
In Iowa, sheriffs issue carry permits for firearms to blind people, because what could possibly go wrong?

As it happens, the story does not relate any incidents in which blind people shot kids for playing in apple trees, which suggests something, I guess. Though perhaps not this:

"The National Federation of the Blind generally opposes vision-related restrictions, because as its director of public relations Chris Danielsen points out, 'presumably [blind people] are going to have enough sense not to use a weapon in a situation where they would endanger other people, just like we would expect other people to have that common sense.' ”

A bit of backstory here. Iowa has had a history of militant blindism which, despite its sometimes comical aspects, probably was a good thing for many blind people who are capable of more than traditional charitymongers were willing to allow. On the other hand, maybe shooting in public is not one of them.

Of course, the same objection can be made of sighted people.

When I was in college I rented a room in a boarding house that had some aspects of a Tennessee Williams play. Each Sunday, the landlady, her sister and her sister's husband drank iced tea and played canasta on the front porch.

And each Sunday, the landlady made the same complaint, that her other sister (who did not attend) had thrown her life away by marrying a blind man.

In fact, her sister seemed to have a fine marriage to a man who made his living as an administrator in the state office for the blind and who was able to travel the country alone on business. The landlady's sighted husband, on the other hand, had been dead for over 30 years, and she was a secret lush.


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