Uncontrolled Guns

There have already been many stupid things said about what happened in Colorado and certainly there is more to come.  I understand why the citizens of Aurora don’t want the name of the killer spoken; our society has made a fetish of murderers for far too long, but we will continue to do so. While a fascination with darkness and madness is understandable as simple curiosity, violence is easily romanticized and made to be more significant than it is, which is nothing more than an animal act. Conversely, our most noble human acts are often derided and mocked; for some, witnessing  selflessness is discomfiting as it mocks their cynicism in a way they cannot accept so they try to return the insult yet hilarity rarely ensues.

Guns exist and because they exist they are necessary for free societies. Tools cannot be uninvented any more than Santa Claus can be re-believed in (though there are rare and notable exceptions to this notion amongst isolated island societies). The proliferation of nuclear weapons to nations such as India, Pakistan and North Korea demonstrate that no technology can be contained indefinitely; eventually every genie escapes their bottle. Any adult who believes that human beings would abandon a tool as widespread and useful as guns are may as well believe that humanity would do without the wheel or fire. This does not mean that guns should be distributed to everyone, but it does mean that no practical solution to the over-proliferation guns can include the elimination of guns. This also means that the fear of having guns taken away by the government that the NRA stokes in its members is histrionically irrational.

In large part this is why it has not been possible to have a rational conversation about guns in the United States for the past quarter century or more; witness how the most fervent uncontrolled guns advocates were out angrily yelling about the notion of anyone even talking about any changes in the law despite this psych patient being able to legally obtain assault rifles and absurd amounts of ammunition completely legally. When the advocate for uncontrolled guns may or may not have shit his pants to avoid military service and suggests that the solution to the problem of crazy people shooting up movie theaters is for the patrons to be armed, it is time to reconsider our position as a nation. Our politicians have been bullied by the most extreme faction of the NRA into total submission-during the Obama Administration there has not been a single new proposed law or policy curtailing gun trafficking or ownership, yet sales have been through the roof as the myth of a government hell bent on taking their guns away permeates the culture. In the same way the right is complaining about taxes when they are at the lowest rates they have been in generations, the gun lobby perpetuates a myth of persecution even as guns flood the nation.

What are your ideas on the subject? I’m genuinely curious.

5 Responses to “Uncontrolled Guns”

  1. Disarming America is incredibly foolish, I agree. I’m not sure if I follow the bullying congress into staying away from gun control argument. I just think politicians know gun control political suicide in America so they won’t touch it with a ten foot pole. It was too easy for Holmes to obtain his tools of destruction, but any law other than an outright ban would be a deterrent on a chicken wire fence level for these crazies, and at what cost? It just makes it that much more difficult for the 99.999% of people that acquire guns for legal use and would never in a million years dream to use one for harm.

    I know you’ve heard this argument before Winston, but I would love to hear your thoughts on it, so I will throw it out there. Guns don’t kill people, people kill people.

  2. Yes, guns don’t kill people; people kill people. People kill people with guns, knives, ropes, baseball bats and hammers. People kill people with bombs, missiles, mines and machine guns. People kill people with antifreeze, cyanide, and morphine. There is no stopping an individual who is truly committed to the act of killing from committing said act.

    However . . .

    Gun regulation is a necessary thing in our particular society, the society that has more gun killings than any other society on this planet. Does that fact alone not speak volumes? I live in a state that used to be the main corridor for gun traffickers on the east coast: Virginia. That’s another statistic that conjures no pride.

    Personally, I am very divided about guns. I have only shot guns twice, and both times that I did I enjoyed it. But I do not own a gun. I have considered buying a gun, but have never found a good enough justification to spend the money that I could spend on a new purse on a weapon. Having said that, do I believe that no one should own a weapon? No. Do I believe that there should be tighter controls over gun ownership? Yes. Do I believe that anyone not in the military should own assault weapons? No.

    We can only guess at what the Constitution’s framers were truly thinking when they drafted the second amendment. It was a different time. Assault weapons with huge magazines did not exist. The firepower of today was generations away from being invented and built.

    What’s my point? I don’t know. I only know that countries that do not have lax gun control also do not have the same number of gun-related homicides. There has to be a correlation.

    • It’s a bit of a catch 22. I know for certain I wouldn’t want to live in a country that doesn’t allow civilian gun ownership. Do we really need 100 round drums for an assault rifle? Well, in today’s society absolutely not! But that doesn’t preclude that it won’t some day be necessary.

      Gun control certainly is a tough issue!

  3. […] Teahouse of the Furious Buddha ‘Fearlessly the idiot faced the crowd, smiling…’ « Uncontrolled Guns […]

  4. Yikes. Let us step in it, shall we? Yeah, people kill people with all sorts of things. Guns make it much easier to kill a lot more people in a lot less time. Which is, of course, what they were designed for. I live in Iowa, where gun ownership is high (mostly hunting rifles) and gun violence is considerably lower than the national average. Which means our gun owners are, by and large, responsible. We still have mass shootings (case in point, the one at the University of Iowa in the mid 1990s), but fewer of them. We are also less diverse than other states, and less poor.
    I don’t believe any sort of gun ban (except maybe the assault weapons ban) will stop this sort of thing, but the AW ban might have discouraged it in a couple of cases. Perhaps legal limits on how much ammo one can buy/possess? Banning those 30-100-round magazines? (Maybe. It would have helped in AZ.) Certainly, registering large ammo purchases might help law enforcement pinpoint some red flag cases. If someone is determined to senselessly kill a large number of people, chances are they will find a way to do it–but bombs take time to set up, and it’s really tough pushing someone out a window.
    Personally, I do not own a gun because I think they’re more trouble than they’re worth–if I require home defense other than living in a well-lighted, safe neighborhood, I shall purchase a nice high-end taser, because I prefer my defensive weapons to be non-lethal.

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