Going Home to Newtown

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  1. “If I lived somewhere like Montana or New Mexico, far from a reliable police response and among large animals that have remained stubbornly undomesticated, I might own a gun myself.”

    I live 4250 feet from the police station. It’s all residential. In ideal conditions, the police can get here in under two minutes. And indeed, they have, when there have been car crashes in front of the house, and that time a knife-wielding man almost broke in trying to attack us. Less than two minutes. That is about as fast as police responses get. And I still will not live here without a gun. When someone is actively trying to hurt you, two minutes is about 117 seconds too long. You may very well have but a few short seconds to protect yourself, whether you live 1 mile or 100 from the police. It isn’t just those who live in the sticks who need to be able to defend themselves in a matter of moments.

    “The same tired pro-gun bromides are trotted out, easy to refute but impossible to impart to those who refuse to traffic in logic.”

    The truth of the issue is that there are no logical arguments in favor of gun control. There is no statistical correlation gun ownership levels and homicide levels, whether comparing the US to other countries, or comparing US states to each other. The evidence is that any laws – short of complete totalitarianism – have been no better at keeping guns out of the hands of criminals than they have been at keeping illicit drugs out of the hands of criminals.

    “intentional misreading of our own Constitution to justify access to the tools of slaughter.”

    The Constitution is pretty clear on the issue: The ownership and possession of arms is a natural right, and the government has no business abridging that right. And it’s not just the Constitution saying this. It’s also the words of the framers themselves. It’s in the words of journalists of the time. It’s in the case law the entire time up until the 20th century.

    “Those who continue to argue against reasonable regulation”

    Those who assume there is such a thing as “reasonable regulation,” are willfully blind to the ethical hypocrisy of gun control, and have substituted emotion for reason when addressing the problem.

    The problem with gun violence does not, in fact, have anything to do with guns. There are 80 million gun owners in this country, and only a very small percentage of them ever use or attempt to use them to hurt innocent people. Nor is this even an issue of access to mental health treatment. Mentally ill people are only slightly more likely to commit a violent crime than those not mentally ill. Psychiatrists aren’t any better than the rest of us at knowing who will commit a violent act. In countries with less access to mental health treatment, mass killings are not more of a problem. To help see the issue of America’s problem with gun violence, take your eyes off of our guns for a moment. The US has a higher rate of non-firearm homicides than other developed nations have regardless of weapon used. The problem of gun violence isn’t guns – it’s violence.
    What is different here is culture. Men are taught from a very early age that being tough is more important than being gentle. They are taught that men shouldn’t show emotions other than anger, confidence, and disgust. They are taught that destruction is an appropriate response to frustration. It’s not caused by movies and video games, but it is reflected in them. Fixing this broken culture is the only viable solution. I like that the GMP does address this issue. But the repeated anti-gun articles – as touching and heartfelt as they are – are barking up the wrong tree.

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