Let’s Deal With the Reality of Guns

Guns
Firearms on the floor are harmless, it takes the hand of a lunatic to make them deadly.

Now that Christmas is over, I think it’s time to deal with the reality of guns, and in fact the reality of mass killings of all kinds.  Some of this came up when I was listening to the latest episode of the ReapSow podcast.  I had been warned that the last third was a liberal anti-gun fest and, certainly it was, but I kept asking myself why they were focusing on what they were focusing on.

But first, a bit of history from me.  I’ve owned many guns in my life, although currently I don’t.  I have had handguns and shotguns, I’ve hunted, I’ve shot target, I’ve done a lot of things.  I have yet to shoot anyone human or have any desire to do so.  My guns all languished in a gun safe at my grandfather’s house for years.  If I wanted them, I could go and get them, but I never really had to worry about securing them.  Just after my youngest daughter was born, my grandfather died and they asked me to see to the disposal of his firearms since no one else wanted them.  I could have brought mine home, heck I could have kept all of his as well, I just didn’t have any interest so I let them all to go a firearms dealer.  I’ve never seen the point in owning another firearm again since, although I have nothing against it.  I’m generally neutral on the concept of firearm ownership.  I think it’s important that people be able to do so if they wish, I don’t think owning them is the end-all, be-all of rights in America.

But don’t tell that to the liberals, they’re convinced that all conservatives are gun-owning monsters.  They want to take away people’s guns.  They’ve been proposing legislation that will eliminate personal ownership of “assault-style” weapons, ignoring the fact that in this particular case, such a ban would have been useless, he was carrying regular pistols and a shotgun, it would have made no difference if his Bushmaster, the only gun that could possibly fall into the “assault” category.  Take that away and you’ll have a crazy person opening up on people with shotguns or handguns.  It won’t stop the carnage, just slow it down.  Some liberals have come out with their real wishes, eliminating all guns of all kinds from the hands of American citizens.  That’s just absurd and betrays wholly irrational thinking.

I think the funniest event to have come about as a result of the Sandy Hook shooting, TV personality Piers Morgan spoke out in response to a guest on his show, Larry Pratt, the executive director of Gun Owners for America.  Actually, it wasn’t in response to Pratt, since he didn’t actually allow Pratt to speak much, he just went into one of his typical anti-gun rants, ignoring anything Pratt had to say.  In fact, Morgan called Pratt an idiot.  This has sparked an online movement to have Morgan deported back to his native England, which is really laughable because the same Constitution that guarantees us the right to own guns also guarantees Morgan the right to free speech.

That’s unfortunate because Pratt, as I heard him interviewed later, had some really valuable points to make.  The fact is, gun control has been a massive failure worldwide.  There have been studies done that show that the nations with the most stringent gun control laws are also the countries with the highest murder rates.  Take Norway, for instance, which has the highest incidence of gun ownership in Europe and also has the lowest murder rate in all of Europe.  Contrast that with Sweden and Denmark, two countries with few guns but astronomical murder rates.  Russia, a country that virtually eliminated personal ownership of firearms has a murder rate four-times higher than the U.S. and 20 times higher than Norway!  Clearly, just  getting rid of guns doesn’t stop murders, it is implicated in making it worse.

The funny thing is, I keep hearing people from England and Australia going off about how we should just ban all guns and violence will just vanish.  These people aren’t dealing with reality.  Let’s look at Australia for a moment.  The entire country has a population of less than 23 million.  That’s considerably smaller than the population of the state of California alone.  It has a land mass of 2,941,000 sq miles compared to California with 163,700 sq miles.  So you have 60% of the population living in 18 times the space, you don’t comprehend that when you pack people in like sardines, you’re going to get violence.  When Australia gets up to 414 million people, we’ll talk.  Even if we’re talking about big cities, you’ve got Sydney with a population of 4.6 million in a city that is 4,689 square miles and Los Angeles with a population of 3.8 million stuffed into 506 square miles.  You figure it out.

Schools in the U.S. have been declared gun-free zones, why do you think that people who want to run amuck and kill people go there?  It certainly hasn’t stopped gun-wielding psychos from heading off to the local school with a load of firearms, has it?  And now, there’s talk of hiring armed guards to stand watch at schools.  So much for the gun-free zones, huh?

The fact is, it doesn’t seem like any of these people on either side are really concerned with getting to the core of the problem, they just want to limit the carnage when someone does flip out.  Take away the guns and you’ll just have people resort to knives.  As I said before, Russia has a phenomenal number of murders, but very few with firearms.  People will stab, strangle, poison and beat their victims and do so in numbers much higher than anywhere else in the world.  Sure, one individual can’t easily stab a dozen victims but that’s of small comfort to the people who actually get stabbed.  Maybe some creative lunatic will just take to using a chainsaw, then liberals will want to ban those too.

Nobody wants to handle the real issues though, the fact that we’ve got inner cities packed in like sardines, the fact that parenting in this country has  gone to hell and the fact that we’ve medicated the crap out of our children with drugs that might as well have a warning on the label reading “this medication may cause mental breaks that lead to school shootings”.  But we just don’t want to deal with any of those things, they require telling the people that they’re a bunch of fucktards that shouldn’t be breeding, it’s not good for getting re-elected.  It’s much easier to go after inanimate objects.

It just  doesn’t change the fact that guns don’t kill people, people kill people and if you take away the guns, they’ll just find something else to use.

10 thoughts on “Let’s Deal With the Reality of Guns

  1. I'm not sure where your negative views on liberals are coming from, but I'd like to present myself (a gun-owning liberal) as a counterexample. I do not believe that conservatives are gun-owning monsters, and I have no desire to take away anybody's guns. I do not think that restricting the sale of certain firearms, magazines, or ammunition is necessarily a bad idea, but it seems like little more than a band-aid measure. Without many non-firearm related measures, it is hard to imagine it doing much good. Besides, it seems a bit late now. Even if certain products were removed from store shelves, nobody outside of right-wing media is talking about attempting to remove these weapons from the homes of everyone who currently has them.
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    1. I hate to say it but it\’s certainly not anyone on the right who is advocating not only assault weapon bans, but banning all guns everywhere. I went looking and came across articles on Huffington Post and elsewhere advocating that we forcibly collect all guns from everyone, everywhere. There was some guy on HP that wanted to collect 2 billion guns worldwide, whether people wanted to give them up or not.

      It does tend to be a liberal thing. That\’s not to say that all liberals support it, we have to remember that \”liberal\” and \”conservative\” are just labels that we assign to ourselves, that doesn\’t somehow generate a hive-mind.

    1. At best, it's a stopgap measure, it doesn't solve the problem and it reduces the freedom of the innocent, while still allowing the guilty to run rampant with reduced results. Sorry if that's not satisfying to me, especially when the real goal, stopping the guilty altogether, isn't even being pursued.

      1. I agree that it is not the end all be all, it certainly shouldn't be all we should do, but some gun control laws are prudent. There is some level of gun that we would agree the general public should not be able to have, say an RPG launcher. The question is just about where we draw the line, should assault rifles be on the list of allowed or disallowed guns? It seems to me they should not be allowed, my understanding is that they aren't really suitable for hunting and they seem ridiculous for home defense. I just don't understand what their legitimate purpose would be. Given that there is such potential for carnage, I would want a good reason to keep them around.

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        1. I honestly don't know that assault weapons, which is a really stupid name for them because they're certainly not military grade, ought to be banned at all. We keep seeing shootings that are using regular shotguns and handguns and all anyone talks about is assault weapons. Nobody talks about the fact that we've drugged the shit out of our kids with medications that cause the symptoms that lead to these shootings in the first place.

    1. Agreed, but then again, you\’ve got people on the left who don\’t want anyone to be held accountable for their actions. They hate guns, but they also don\’t want anyone to go to prison. Nothing is ever their fault. No one is ever to blame for the bad things they do. They want to let people out early and treat prisons like country clubs, forgetting that this is supposed to be a punishment, not a vacation. People should want to stay out of prison, yet we have a ridiculously high recidivism rate because the prisons are far too nice. You can\’t stop criminals until you recognize that they are criminals and stop treating them like they\’re not.

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