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Thursday, December 3, 2015

In Which We Talk about What We Talk about When We Talk about Guns

What really gets me is that, if you slice through the hyperbolic rhetoric--"Obama's a-comin' for yer guns!!!"--the actual proposals that most people talk about when they talk about gun control are things you would think the vast majority of people--Democrat or Republican, black or white, rich or poor--would have very little problem with: Close loopholes that allow people to avoid background checks when buying guns at gun shows.  Require people to undergo training before being licensed to carry a gun.  Maybe require gun owners to carry insurance.

It's not accidental, by the way, that many proposals mirror regulations generally associated with automobile ownership.  A standard (and oh-so-tired) argument put forth by gun enthusiasts is that, if we want to save lives, we should ban cars not guns.  A specious argument, of course, as almost nobody actually talks about banning guns, merely regulating them and making it more difficult for sociopaths to amass arsenals.  But still, if we're going to compare guns to cars, I'm all for that.  If we simply regulated guns as much as we regulate cars, we'd be well on our way to solving the mass shooter problem.

If it will make the enthusiasts happy, I will go on record (as I have before) as a proud liberal and say that I have no desire to see guns confiscated.  If it makes you feel safer to keep a gun in your house, fine.  I will even say that I understand the gun owners' concerns about legislation that would ban a particular type of gun or limit the number of guns a person can own.  I don't agree with those concerns, but I understand them.  To go back to the car metaphor, most people would take issue with the government limiting the number or type of vehicles a person can own.  So in that regard, I understand a person being troubled at the thought of government officials restricting his/her right to own, say, a small army's worth of guns.  Probably not as troubled as I am by wondering why someone would feel the need to own said small army's worth of guns, but troubled nonetheless.  Still, I would point out that different types of vehicle--motorcycle, boat, truck--require different types of licensure.  Maybe a person who wants to own a military-grade semi-automatic weapon should go through greater training requirements than a person who simply wants to pack a derringer.

My point is, I am willing to concede that some of the points made by gun-rights activists have merit.  Now, could the NRA return the favor and concede that some of the points made by those of us who simply want to live our lives without constantly wondering if we will be the next victims of heavily armed sociopaths also have merit.  Can we please find some common ground and do. . . well, something?!?

1 comment:

  1. Let me make this simple:
    1. The NRA is controlled by, and FUNDED by, gun manufacturers
    2. Gun manufacturers SELL guns
    3. ANY restrictions on guns is a restriction on gun sales
    4. To go back to cars: SUVS are far more profitable than small cars because they add a few more doodads to the small car base that cost very little, but allow manufacturers to charge LOTS more and make HUGE profits (but people started to get smart)
    5. Assault weapons, et al, are the SUVs of arms manufacture
    6. If we appeal only to morons in our gun propaganda, only morons will back the NRA... but there are SO MANY of them
    7. Have I ever mentioned Louis Gomert?