1. Owning a gun is one of the most basic civil rights.
It is human nature to rule or be ruled. Without constant vigilance against such ideas, we inevitably drift into an unconscious acceptance of a permanent ruling class. Throughout all of history, citizens were subjected to the laws and rules of kings, the Church, oligarchies, and tyrants.
The establishment of a government of, by, and for the people was unprecedented, prefaced by the idea that men are created equal, that men should govern themselves.
But when you give up your ability to protect (and provide for) yourself to a government, you acknowledge that they are better, smarter, and more capable of handling things than you. You have, in essence, decided that men are not equal after all. The ruling class knows better, and only the ruling class can be trusted with guns.
2. Guns are the great equalizer.
One of the NRA’s earlier programs was to arm black men in the South, so they could protect themselves against attacks by the KKK. Their aim was to give the power of self-protection to the powerless.
Gun rights supporters are often painted as angry hicks with Confederate battle flags flying from their pick-up trucks. But many gun owners are actually women, who acquire a gun to protect themselves against attackers. In many cases, gun ownership gives someone who would normally be victimized the chance to fight back.
3. Banning guns in the U.S. would have the same net result as Prohibition.
The Volstead Act was difficult and costly to enforce, and it introduced a whole new criminal class. Prohibition was enacted to reduce crime, the negative health effects of excessive alcohol consumption, and to promote a cleaner lifestyle for all the citizens of the U.S. But it ended up increasing the problems it meant to abolish. So would a gun confiscation.
4. Laws should not be passed because bad things happen.
If you feel a bit less free in the U.S. than you did 20 years ago, this is the reason why.
Smoking bans, speed limit laws, drug laws, child booster seat laws, health insurance laws, tax laws, OSHA regulations, EPA regulations….we’re getting to the point where virtually everything is illegal, where everyone is breaking some kind of law, like those criminal masterminds who sell lemonade without having a public health inspector check their kitchen, lemons, sugar, and storage.
Why do these laws exist? Because at some point and some time, someone got hurt (or someone in a position of power imagined someone getting hurt), and in an effort to stop the possibility of anyone getting hurt again (think of the children!), these laws and regulations were passed to keep us all very, very safe.
5. You shouldn’t punish good people for the actions of the bad.
The bad behavior of a few often leads to laws and regulations that constrict the freedoms of everyone. Those laws are ineffectual, because they only target those who actually follow the law. They don’t work. They’re only symbolic. Bad things are still going to happen. But, you know, we’ve got to do something! So tyranny creeps in with our emotional need for action. It is the slow and steady deterioration of our nation.
6. Mass shootings are this century’s version of serial killers, which were last century’s version of marauders, not the outcome of the freedom to own a gun.
The new M.O. for young men hoping to make a name for themselves (and that is 95% of their motive) is to acquire guns and shoot as many people as possible.
These individuals are selfish, immersed in a world of sin and solipsism, Godless, and supported by a cultural obsession with the fickle immortality of having the media say your name. The freedom to own a firearm has nothing to do with it, nor is it an indication that the sky is falling. Men (and women) with blood-lust and blunted empathy, who do terrible things, have existed since the beginning of time. They will always exist.
7. Firearm abuse is just one of many things that kill us.
If you’re going to creep down the path of making laws for safety, how far are you willing to go?
There are a lot of things that exist with the potential to hurt people. Should I start naming some of them?
Cars (in 2012, 33,561 died in car accidents)
Depression (40,000 suicides in 2012)
Sex (in 2012, 13,712 died of AIDS in the U.S.)
Medicine (17,000 prescription drug abuse deaths in 2012)
Food (600,000 heart disease deaths per year)
Alcohol (88,000 alcohol related deaths per year)
Work (4700 on the job deaths in 2014)
And finally, we have Guns: (8,855 gun related homicides in 2012 – add in accidental gun deaths for a total of 12,000)
Clearly, we live in a dangerous world. And banning guns is only going to make us a little more safe . . . well, if you could actually confiscate all the guns, stop all illegal gun activity, and stop guns from being smuggled over the border with Mexico, that is.
Maybe, instead, we should acknowledge that it is not a tool that causes evil but people who do evil things. Then we could expend our energy on fixing that, as opposed to letting it fester, so we have to keep moving down the list of banning things that could harm us.