Doofus Of The Day #1,075 and #1,076


As a firearms instructor, I’m steaming with anger at the moment, having read two accounts of lives needlessly thrown away through unthinking carelessness and utter stupidity.  Both earn Darwin Awards, but those concerned are no longer in a position to learn from them.

Case One, in Michigan – Doofus #1,075:

A 50-year-old man died when he accidentally shot himself in his head after a witness asked him to to “stop playing” with a gun last weekend in Pontiac, the Oakland County Sheriff’s Office said.

. . .

Authorities interviewed the victim’s brother, girlfriend and a friend, all of whom had been at the home when the incident occurred. The girlfriend told them she had asked the man to “stop playing with the firearm shortly before the victim put the gun to his head and pulled the trigger,” according to the release.

Case Two, in Tennessee – Doofus #1,076:

A man was shot and killed Friday night in the parking lot of a Hermitage business after a robbery “prank” for a YouTube channel went wrong, according to Metro Nashville police.

. . .

When officers arrived at the scene … 23-year-old David Starnes Jr. admitted to shooting Wilks.

Investigators were told that Wilks and a friend approached a group of people, including Starnes, with butcher knives while participating in a “prank” robbery for a YouTube video. 

Starnes, who told officers he was unaware of the prank, said he shot Wilks in defense of himself and others, according to the release.

How unbelievably dumb do you have to be to do things like that?  And why do the news media persist in calling the subsequent death “accidental”?  It’s not accidental at all – it’s the deliberate, foreseeable consequence of a really stupid act.  In both of the above cases, the deceased are solely responsible for their own deaths.  Nobody else is to blame.  That makes the “victim” in reality the perpetrator, if you want to be pedantic about it – and I do!

What’s more, how did the late Mr. Wilks miss the fact that Tennessee has a large proportion of concealed firearms carriers among its population?  It would have been over even more quickly had he acted around this part of northern Texas.  I guaran-damn-tee you that at least half the bystanders within effective range would have enthusiastically joined in the feu de joie the instant they saw his knife.  We don’t mess around up here.

Incidents such as these are a freebie handed to the anti-gun movement, which asserts that many people cannot be trusted with guns.  As far as the two deceased are concerned, it’s hard to argue with that.



  1. Reminds me of Einstein,who once said that he was not sure whether the commonest thing in the universe was hydrogen or human stupidity.

  2. I wouldn't put incident two in the "people can't be trusted with guns" category, since the person at fault wasn't holding the gun. It's in the "play stupid games, win stupid prizes" category.

  3. Agree with Tom but I'd add that "can't be trusted with" assumes that all people should live out their natural lives and that their decisions should not affect how long those natural lives are. In a more prehistoric time they both might have been posing with "dead" sabertooth tigers without checking to see if "dead" was an accurate description. The cave paintings might then have passed on the message that people were too dumb to have spears.

  4. Why does it make you mad? It's just Nature flushing the gene pool. I think idiots removing themselves from society should be encouraged, preferably before breeding, of course. 😉

  5. Then there's the young lady who styled her hair with Gorilla Glue.

    She's actually suing the company, and I wouldn't be surprised if she ends up winning.

  6. None of this should get your panties in a twist. People die all the time from doing stupid things. Sometimes as stupid as looking down at a text message while driving.

    And agree with Tom that any connection to misuse of firearms is pretty attenuated in the second case (seems like the firearm was properly used) and unproven in the first (hey, maybe he wanted to kill himself!)

  7. I admire your sense of humanity, but I line up pretty much with the other commenters. #1 might have been stoned, suicidal, or a terminal idiot; it's hard to tell from the snip. (I wonder whether there is backstory that might explain an otherwise inexplicable event.) #2? Definitely terminal-stupid. Zendodeb is fond of pointing out that stuff can happen in states that are not New Jersey, Connecticut, etc., but either that word isn't getting out or the perps think their invincibility cloaks are working just fine.

  8. Robert Heinlein wrote about how stupidity was the one "crime" that although the victim cant help being stupid, comes supplied by Nature with an automatic death sentence… first case sounds like he was bent on suicide with witnesses, 2and was as you described, stupid guys doing stupid things in stupid places..exactly as John Farnam has warned against for DECADES.

  9. While it's amusing to refer to flushing the gene pool and otherwise ridding us of idiots, incidents such as #1 take a tiny chip out of our defense of guns. I wish the idiots would find a different tool.

    As for #2, I wonder where You Tube ranks on the number of annual fatalities.

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