Rob, Ordinarily I'd be downtown by now, shooting pictures, but it's hotter than blue blazes out there, so I'll stick around and philosophize.
An easy supply of guns isn't the problem. The problem is people who use guns to perpetrate crimes.
Humans have armed themselves since long before the beginning of recorded history, and they're not about to stop now. The arrival of guns -- even ancient wheellocks and flintlocks, made a huge difference in human interactions. The gun revolution was even more striking than the introduction of the English longbow, which revolutionized warfare. Then we progressed through a series of minor revolutions such as breech-loading, rifling, etc., etc., and finally developed the Gatling gun, the water-cooled machine gun, the tommy gun -- so Chicago criminals wouldn't be left out of the march of progress, and Wegee would be able to get his gory pictures -- and eventually learned how to produce the ultimate weapon by disrupting atoms.
There's no way to limit the number of guns. If you make gun manufacture and possession illegal in one country, guns will be manufactured in another country and smuggled in by criminals for criminals. If you make gun manufacture and possession illegal in every country in the world only criminals will manufacture guns, but you can be sure they'll manufacture them just as they manufactured booze during U.S. prohibition.
When a jurisdiction tries to limit the ability of honest people to arm themselves, what they're actually doing is trying to make sure only criminals have guns, though in sane jurisdictions they insist that their enforcers -- the cops -- are armed. But what's the difference between an armed cop on the corner and an honest man who's firearm trained, alert, and carrying a weapon? The only difference I can see is that the cop is "sworn." When I was mayor, during big downtown events we'd sometimes use a group of volunteers called the Colorado Mounted Rangers to help keep the peace. My police chief would grumble about "hobby cops," but the Rangers were well-trained and responsible. One of them was a deacon in my church.
You're right. Only people in combat need assault weapons. But people who don't know anything at all about guns will call any rifle -- semi-automatic or even single-shot -- with a flash suppressor or a pistol grip an "assault" weapon because it looks hairier than the semi-automatic rifle next to it that's mechanically identical. I don't know about other countries, but in the U.S., full automatic weapons of any kind, and rocket launchers, are outlawed.
Guns don't kill people. People kill people -- either deliberately or by "accident" through ignorance. And people kill people with guns, knives, garrottes, baseball bats, crowbars, shovels, automobiles, etc., etc. If you lock up or execute all the people who want to kill, you'll solve the problem, but you won't solve it by futilely trying (to) rid the world of guns.
Well said. I've carried a Glock 15-clip .40 cal for years (under my car seat when I am driving, in my back pocket when I am hiking, etc.), and have yet to kill someone, for the simple reason I have no desire to
. In the same fashion, I have never tried to rob someone or wrongly deprive them of their possessions, because I know right from wrong and have no desire to do so. I simply carry my pistol for self-defense, not
the intent to harm another person (or animal for that matter) without cause.
"The right to keep and bear arms" is every man's right in a free society. In fact, Florida just passed a law legalizing concealed weapons on all of the Florida State Parks, which is as it should be. Lots of things can happen out in the middle of the wild, and IMO only a fool would go miles out into the wilderness without
a gun. Same thing in a so-called "civilized" major city.
Sure, a gun is a lethal weapon, this is nothing new. But it takes a human decision
to make it so (that, or human stupidity, in the case of accidental shootings/suicides). I have never in my life wanted to kill an innocent person. Never would such a thought or impulse cross my mind, because I do not have an evil heart or an addled mind. However, if I were presented with a very real danger to me or my familiy, I would unhesitatingly pull the trigger defending my own life, property, or loved ones--and wouldn't lose a wink of sleep over it. The way I see it is if my own life, or the lives of my loved ones, or if everything that I have worked hard for, were being put into jeopardy by a social deviant intent on taking what is not rightfully his to take ... that it's the aggressive deviant
who needs to be culled, not
the person minding his/her own business and lifestyle.
As much as we like to think otherwise, this world is as potentially brutal as it is beautiful. A person of sound mind and strong heart appreciates and strives for the beauty, but is aware of and prepared for the brutal. By contrast, only a person of addled mind or weak heart cannot see/appreciate that the need for preparedness is as real as the capacity to appreciate the beautiful. Therefore, this "Oh my gosh!"
reaction to the sight of a man with a gun is nothing but the de-masculinization of men in our society. This is, after all, the end aim of "big society" is to create sheeple
out of men, not
to give them a sense of empowerment. Depending on the authorities of society to protect onself is a fool's form of protection, for unless you have a cop posted to every man, in every place, there is no real protection. And it's not about "living scared" either; again it's simply about preparedness. And as far as being "caught" with a gun, I would rather explain to any officer "why" I have my gun ... than for him to have to explain "what happened" to my next-of-kin because a situation arose where I really needed to have it onhand but did not.
And as for guns being "responsible" for accidents and suicides, this is patently false. Guns do not move and they don't make decisions, only people do, therefore all such tragedies involve follies in human decision-making
because "guns exist." IMO such foolish people who "accidentally" kill themselves or others are nothing but the culls of life, eliminated by the unsoundness of their own minds (or the unsoundness of their parents' minds, in the unfortunate cases where stupid parents leave their guns accessible for their under-aged/untrained children). Thoughtlessness is a defect
in an adult, that often comes with serious consequences. So why get rid of the "guns," and disarm the intelligent and vigilant in the process, as a "cure" for either evil or thoughtless stupidity in defective people? Further, and as has been pointed out many times before, when any person is hell-bent on either murder or suicide there are plenty of other ways to achieve these ends besides using a gun. (And I say that as a person whose best friend shot himself 16 years ago. I sure do miss my friend, but it was his bipolar disorder
that prompted him to commit suicide , not
"his gun." For another fact is I know of a different man ... with the same bipolar disorder
... who killed himself by jumping off a bridge.) Therefore, here again, we see that the disordered mind
was the problem, not
Because these same kinds of undeniable facts will always
add-up in the same way, if analyzed properly, I will never
agree with the belief that intelligent, vigilant people of sound mind and character should be "disarmed" by society ... as some kind of alleged "prevention" for evil (or disturbed) people from harming others or themselves. Such evil/disturbed people will always find another way, while the innocent person will be robbed of his best defenses. And the great irony is, this kind of "reasoning" (of limiting the freedom of the sane and the good, to achieve a false
reprieve for the evil/defective) is its own form
of addled thinking ...
PS: Sorry for the rant ... oh, and nice photo of the old-timer & his dog Russ