Well. there's a bit of blue sky off to the northwest, so there's hope yet!
Meanwhile. over at Snowflakes in Hell, Sebastian has found the one person who proves categorically that I'm wrong about firearms being a 100% polarized issue! Okay, snarky comment aside — and hey, I haven't made any snarky comments in quite a while...sigh — believing in the standard distribution curve is probably more valid than believing in the Easter Bunny, and there is a constant need for contrarian opinions...remember, speak truth to power! My opinions are based on decades of time in the trenches, which doesn't necessarily translate into me being 100% right 100% of the time.
I would like to point out that in the first few decades of the battle against the antigunners, the pro-gun strategy was to "prove" to the uncommitted middle — the 80% bulge in the middle of the curve — that we were sane, responsible, thoughtful citizens deserving of our gun rights. How'd that work for us? The problem was that we kept giving incremental ground to prove we were "reasonable;" the amazing thing to me was that the other side has never given one single inch, not even the smallest increment.
I tend to believe in the words intoned by John Houseman as the crusty contracts professor in the Paper Chase movie years and years ago: "Contracts are the basis of all civilization." And a contract is a meeting of the minds, where the parties involved have discussed/argued/whatever the issues and moved to mirroring positions of agreement. At any point in the past 50 years, including now, we could have come to a meeting of the minds with the other side, had they been willing to modify their positions in the slightest. They haven't done such, because this is a religious, rather than a political, war. It is and always has been not about guns, but about control.
As far as the great bulge in the middle, it is better understood as a weathervane, blowing first right, then left, driven by prevailing winds in the media, in entertainment, in the fleeting currents of popular culture. Ted Nugent's unrelenting, entertaining, line-in-the-sand personality has done more to sway the middle to our side than all the thoughtful reasonableness of the last 50 years. Again, my opinion...your mileage may vary.