Precisely, My Dear Huck @NRA
I am in full agreement with you that the adults in the life of Tmorej Smith are responsible for his death and I believe they are criminally negligent. However, I extend responsibility to the adults in the community and society that make it possible for little pink loaded handguns to be lying about in houses where 3 year old children are playing. Yes, the adults are in that home are irresponsible, but we as a society could have done more than we do for that kid, and I’m not talking about an intrusive nanny state telling you how to raise your kid. I’m talking about an organization of zealots that’s endangering us all. The NRA has been fighting in legislatures state by state to get gag orders on pediatricians to prevent them from asking about guns in the home, which is in many ways the zenith of the paradox of their absolutist position; they are tacitly admitting that guns are so dangerous to have in a home that they don’t want doctors to study or even ask about them because such data would only reveal that their anecdotes of grey haired nuns liquidating packs of rapists with her AR 15 aren’t exactly representative of the actual outcome of gun ownership when we do it the NRA way.
In no way do I advocate for or think that simple gun bans or confiscations should be something on the table in this conversation. I agree with many of the premises of what most gun owners believe; that a gun is a tool, and that a tool is inherently morally neutral and the use of the tool is the responsibility of the user. However, in the case of weapons, I believe it is reasonable to hold the makers and distributors responsible for how these specific tools are marketed and used; tools such as aircraft and automobiles are subject to all sorts of restrictions, requirements and licensing that try to balance safety with maximum freedom of use for the individual. Currently Boeing is being prevented from flying planes because their batteries keep setting themselves on fire; is this a case of a socialist tyranny or a useful referee? Currently it has become clear that the widespread proliferation of assault rifles is leading to horrific mass killings by disturbed individuals; is this a UN plot to disarm the US populace or maybe we need to look at how we’re doing things a little more closely, with open eyes and a fresh perspective all around.
The genie is out of the bottle on this kind of technology, though, and once the 3d printer becomes commonplace, we are going to have a whole new kind of armaments issue to deal with. It’s why it’s a good idea to try and change the culture now before it is far too late, and by ‘change the culture’, I don’t mean get rid of guns, because I fully understand and accept the reality of their proliferation. What I want is to move the culture closer to where people like you and Kenny are, where guns are respected as a very dangerous and important tool that are not to be treated recklessly and require disciplined responsibility to wield. Not something to drunkenly wave around in a deranged tantrum.
Do you grok me, brother?