15 February 2006

Thirty yards. Thirty yards is ninety feet. The reason why shotguns work is that the little shot pellets spread out as they travel. That means that when they are a foot away from the muzzle of the gun, they are very close together, and they spread (generally) about six inches to a foot radially for every three feet they travel. Or one foot per yard, or two yards. For the sake of argument, let's say they only spread six inches per yard, or a foot for every two yards. Naturally, gravity and friction act on the pellets and screw up the nice circle thing and the pellets spread in a sort of lopsided fashion after a while.

Ninety feet. Thirty yards. The pellets spread a foot every two yards. Assuming a starting diameter of zero, just for the sake of simple mathematics here, that means that the shot from Cheney's gun had spread to a pattern approximately fifteen feet in diameter.

I'm sorry. No. THAT would not put a man in ICU. Furthermore, the doctors say there are still many pellets inside of him. That's not being "peppered", that's being SHOT. The article on Yahoo says there could be as many as 200 pellets inside of him yet. That many pellets, or even HALF that many pellets, dense enough to all enter a man, means that Whittington was a heckuva lot closer to Cheney than the witnesses said, and therefore within visual range.

Furthermore, hunting conventions dictate that when hunting birds, such as quail, one does not shoot one's gun at less than a forty-five degree angle to the ground to prevent just such an accident. One also does not ever sweep and fire, nor does one shoot behind oneself.

Even furthermore, the party who is operating the firearm is responsible for its operation AT ALL TIMES. That means being sure about at what you are firing. Additionally, when flushing quail, all members of the hunting party are meant to be in a line, more or less, and only shoot in an approximate 150 degree arc in FRONT of the group.

That means that Whittington coming up BEHIND the group is not a reason for him to be shot.

THAT means that The Vice President Screwed Up. Accident? Sure, maybe. Probably. Should he own up that he Screwed Up? Yes. If I hit a pedestrian with my car and it's an accident, it's still my fault because I was driving the car. The Veep is not special because he is a rich politician. Personal Responsibility, people.

Oh, and Whittington was thirty yards away just like I am secretly Charlton Heston.


Blogger Citizen said...

This incident, as long as the guy doesn't die, is a somewhat humorous indictment of the whole administration. If he does end up dying, then it becomes a very sad indictment of the Bush White House (and Cheney should go up for involuntary manslaughter charges at the least).

4:57 PM  

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