Zombies And The American Gun Culture

“The Walking Dead” is a television phenomenon that merges seamlessly into the American gun culture. It’s theme is essentially “murder without guilt”: the basic premise is: “all the bad guys are no longer human and all the good guys carry guns.
If only it could be that easy.

Zombies haves replaced “The Simpsons” as America’s most favorite dysfunctional TV stars. Not just a dysfunctional family, but thousands of brain-eating undead zombies!

Why zombies? What is it about animated corpses that resonate so much with the public in general? The TV series is the new pop phenomenon: we see zombies in TV, movies, comics, and even in a Sears ad campaign. Sears no longer sells guns, so it now advertises (whimsically we suppose) a “zombie trap” as an alternative.

The Walking Dead” has become a phenomenon, especially with America’s gun culture. Gun forums are full of “zombie” discussions: “what’s the best gun for shooting zombies” or offering zombie related shooting products. The Michigan Firearms Examiner’ declared ”Zombie Week” In honor of Halloween.

But, why Zombies? Why not real threats like “criminals” or “terrorists”? What is it about fighting animated corpses that resonates so much with the public in general and the gun culture in particular?

Apparently it’s violence without guilt or the need to justify or validate. Zombies are “no longer human”; and they’re UGLY! Unlike real humans, there is no question about the “assumption of innocence”, they are obviously guilty so there is no questionof guilt, and no need for justification. It’s always “open season” on zombies.

Or as one gun owner stated: “They’re already dead, so no ethics are involved. Zombies are a metaphor that lets us think ofourselves as heroes”.

If only it could be that easy in real life.

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