Please Take My Guns


I have to say that, on a personal level, I don’t care for guns. They strike me as a symbol of the fragility of human life, and they ARE made for the express purpose of killing. I suppose I’m not opposed to hunting, although it’s not something I would ever do myself. Gun culture in general, though, is just foreign to my own experience and beliefs. I’m sure the vast majority of gun owners are decent people who would never harm another human being without cause, and I don’t particularly want to be drawn into a debate with someone who’s heavily armed. {g} I do have a few questions, however:

1. Is the concept of the heroic person with a gun who thwarts a robbery or a mass murder like the one in Colorado all that realistic? Or is it more likely that another person firing a gun in such a situation would just cause more chaos?

2. A common argument is that, if we ban guns, only criminals will have them. Well, criminals plus the police and military, I guess. This is true, but wouldn’t stricter laws at least make it harder for the criminals, and maybe stop some law-abiding citizens from BECOMING criminals? Any reduction in gun violence is a good thing, right?

3. How does competitive shooting at a range or whatever count as a practical use for guns? What’s practical about that? Maybe my anti-sport bias is showing there.

4. I’ve occasionally come across the argument that the citizens need guns in case we need to take down the government. Is this really at all realistic? The government has access to much better weapons, and I don’t think a few gun-toting liberty lovers would stand a snowball’s chance in Hell against it.

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2 Responses to Please Take My Guns

  1. Right, being married to a gun nut I can give you some answers (though I don’t know how good they are, they’re just Answers). I appreciate your willingness to discuss rather than just outright dismissing All Guns And People Who Have Them Are Wrong, which I’ve seen so much of lately and it’s really AWKWARD… but anyway.

    1. Depends on the person. Jason says he recommends that anyone who has ANY DOUBT they’d be able to actually shoot a person in self-defense if it came to that SHOULDN’T carry a firearm for defense. It WOULD make the situation worse/ add to the chaos. Early on he kept trying to convince me to get a concealed weapons permit, but as he got to know me better he now says I should definitely NOT. He’s right. I’m a decent shot, but I definitely don’t think I could shoot someone even in self-defense. Jason on the other hand I’d trust in such a situation. He’s clearheaded in crisis, very observant, and an excellent shot. He compares carrying his concealed weapon to wearing a seat belt. Chances are, you’re not going to NEED that seat belt, but if you get in an accident, you’re going to want it on. IF a crazed maniac burst in to a public place and started taking people out, Jason would feel awful knowing he’d be CAPABLE of stopping the situation but not having his gun on him to do so.

    Of course, how do you separate the people like Jason who COULD do it from the blowhards who think they know what they’re doing from movies?

    2. I’m fully with the majority of gun-rights folks on this one. Most gun crime is done with illegally-owned guns anyway, and is usually done in connection with other crimes anyway (like drugs. Hey, they’re illegal! None of THEM are about!) I don’t see the point of a gun ban. But I do think the NRA (regardless of being generally for gun rights, I DO think the NRA is a ridiculous money-grubbing and obviously politically-biased organization) is a bit too defensive about restrictions on GETTING guns. People DO need background checks everywhere, not just at stores– gun shows and such too, and personal sales should be regulated. I’d also be in favor of mandatory safety training/testing– like you need a licence to drive a car, you should also get one to own a firearm. Even Jason admits that would be a good idea, even though he’s kneejerk defensive about this issue otherwise.

    3. Yeah, that’s your anti-sports bias.

    4. It’s mostly a paranoia thing, I think, but all the same, the first thing a totalitarian regime does when they come to power is ban guns. I mean, a lone gunman can STILL take out an Important Leader even should said Leader have access to the button that launches the nukes. And that IS the point of the second amendment (many other arguments? Not so much. But THAT one IS the point of it). Sure the government has huge weapons of mass destruction, but citizens can still do something if necessary. Katniss started a revolution with a handful of poisonous berries. Okay I’ve gone fictional here. Never mind.

    That doesn’t change that the EXTREMELY paranoid can think they’re defending the country from a totalitarian regime just because they don’t approve of some policy or other. But…

    There’s another argument along these same lines, which I never see discussed. The anti-gun people always say “You don’t need them for protection! That’s what the police are for!” These folks almost invariably turn out to live in cities or large suburbs. In rural areas, no, one CANNOT depend on the police. Somebody broke into your farmhouse and is threatening your family? How soon is help going to get there?

    Okay I’d better go before I run out of room.

    • Nathan says:

      Most gun crime is done with illegally-owned guns anyway, and is usually done in connection with other crimes anyway (like drugs. Hey, they’re illegal! None of THEM are about!)

      I’m all for loosening the anti-drug laws, but I do have to say that their illegality is probably stopping some people. I hear drugs are easy to get, but that doesn’t mean I know how to do it.

      The anti-gun people always say “You don’t need them for protection! That’s what the police are for!” These folks almost invariably turn out to live in cities or large suburbs. In rural areas, no, one CANNOT depend on the police.

      It’s not like you can always trust the police with guns either. Hell, think back to Rodney King and you’ll realize you can’t even always trust them WITHOUT guns.

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