4:17 pm Jul. 24, 2012
The New York Post followed up the Aurora shooting massacre with an uncharacteristically awkward editorial, at once conceding the point that it's not a great idea to allow virtually unrestricted sales of militarized automatic weapons while also sternly cautioning would-be gun-controllers to respect the Second Amendment.
As a piece of advocacy, the Post editorial was pretty much useless; rousing language signifying nothing, in terms of a discernable position on gun control.
(Perhaps relatedly, Rupert Murdoch's tweet on the topic—"We don't need AK47s to defend ourselves. Nobody does."—was perfectly clear.)
Thinking there might be something more definitive to be said about what might be called the Urban Conservative position on potential new gun laws, post-Aurora, I called the normally responsive Manhattan Institute to set up an interview with an expert on law enforcement and guns.
I didn't presume to know what they'd say. The Manhattan Institute is conservative, and nationally, conservatives generally take the N.R.A. line that Guns Don't Kill People and more regulation isn't the answer. But the Manhattan Institute is particularly New Yorky in its approach to muscular law enforcement—Broken Windows Theory was conceived there—and the haphazard proliferation of combat weaponry (unlike, say, aggressive application of stop-and-frisk) certainly isn't part of their formula for law and order.
They politely but firmly declined to provide anyone to address the subject.