In an attempt to do something constructive before my day spirals into chaos, I like to hit the gym around 5:30. At that hour, the only viewing options are typically CNN, local news, and VH1. Anyone who has ever tried to get cranking on the elliptical while watching pre-dawn traffic reports will understand why I opt for the music videos. Though 20 years older than your average Adam Lambert fan (OK, 25 years), I appreciate any programming that will get my blood pumping that early.

All of which is by way of explaining how I became a closet VH1 junkie and stumbled across what I feel may be among the most significant cultural trends of the moment: lethal breasts.

I realize the economy is still in distress and Afghanistan looks grimmer by the day, but I can't help wondering what it portends for the republic that the latest hits by two of today's hottest video phenoms, Katy Perry and Lady Gaga, both feature their stars sporting what may best be described as gun bras.

In most ways, the videos could not be more different: Gaga's "Alejandro" has a dark, dystopian, angry, not-so-vaguely fascist feel. Perry's "California Gurls" is a fluffy, cheeky, candy-colored, titillating confection. As best I can tell, the offerings have only two things in common: 1. Neither woman can dance worth a damn. 2. Toward the end, both singers bee-bop around with their boobs locked n loaded. In Gaga's case, we're talking shiny black, strap-on machine guns that wobble menacingly but don't discharge. In Katie's, we get candy-cane-striped whipped-cream cannisters that fire ecstatically at Snoop Dogg. Forget Madonna's '90s-era cone bra; these are mammaries of an entirely different caliber. 

The development becomes even more engrossing when you consider that Perry and Gaga recently got into a verbal smackdown after Perry dissed the calculated-to-offend blasphemy in "Alejandro" as the equivalent of a fart joke. My god, can you imagine the money to be made if someone could convince these two ladies to go at it while wearing their respective gun bras? The mind reels.

What does it all mean? Hard to say at this point. And, if one were intent on picking nits, I'd feel compelled to note that, by the standards of Serious Journalism, it takes three examples to make a trend. But I am confident this is a sartorial statement whose moment has arrived. Indeed, with much of the electorate all hopped up on tea and anti-government rage, I suspect tis only a matter of time before gun bras of all shapes, colors, and cup sizes go mainstreamespecially among NRA types.

If that doesn't make the 2012 electoral cycle more exciting, I don't know what would.