Palm Beach County Supervisor Apologizes Over Gun Joke

People are way too sensitive these days.

While there are undoubtedly some very tasteless jokes–I’ve got a dark sense of humor, so I may still find them hilarious–there are others that don’t really cross any real lines. However, some people still want to get offended by pretty much everything.


Take this comment made by the Palm Beach County school superintendent:

Palm Beach County Superintendent Michael Burke apologized on Wednesday for what he called an “inappropriate” comment he made one day prior about guns.

During a back-to-school breakfast hosted by the Chamber of Commerce of the Palm Beaches on Tuesday, a woman in the audience asked Burke if there was anything the community could do to support students and the School District of Palm Beach County during this challenging time.

“Yes, send lawyers, guns, and money please,” Burke jokingly said, which was met by a roar of laughter and applause from the crowd.

Burke then quickly backtracked on his comments.

His backtrack was not to send guns, but lawyers and money wouldn’t hurt.

Now, as Burke said in his apology, his comment was simply a reference to a Warren Zevon song. It shouldn’t have had people upset. And yet, they were. Apparently, even mentioning guns is forbidden now. You can’t even mention them in reference to a freaking song, for crying out loud.

Of course, for some people, this is no big thing. For pretty much everyone reading Bearing Arms on a regular basis, it’s no big thing. I mean, it’s a reference to a classic rock song that even if everyone doesn’t know, should at least be able to look up.

But nope. He said the g-word, and that simply can’t be allowed.

Folks seriously need to lighten up.

Yes, I get that this is in reference to schools, but so what? There’s absolutely no way anyone with any reasonable amount of intelligence could have taken Burke seriously, so again, it’s a joke.


But guns aren’t allowed to be the subject of a joke, even if it’s a song reference. That’s because guns are evil, didn’t you know?

For a while, I’ve spoken about the stigmatization of gun owners, an attempt to stigmatize guns and gun ownership to the point where it’s not even talked about in polite company. The idea is to make gun owners feel isolated; as if they don’t really fit in within their communities. The desire for tribal affiliation that exists in all of us to some degree will kick in and people will start thinking the right way because they’re not allowed to find out their neighbor is also a gun person.

That’s really what’s going on here, too.

See, Burke mentioned the forbidden subject. More than that, though, he didn’t mention it in a way that was deprecating or insulting. He used it in a context where it sounded like a good thing, and that just can’t be allowed.

So here we are now. A man had to apologize for a joke that didn’t hurt a soul, all because some people have their knickers in a twist about guns.

They need to get over it.

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