I am extraordinarily anti-gun. I would love to see them all immediately outlawed for all citizens, and after some period of time (once the unregistered and otherwise illegal ones have been mostly gathered… 15 years?) to have police stop carrying them on routine patrols, as well. I have a master’s degree in criminal justice, and once upon a time I could cite statistics about how rare it actually is for citizens to successfully defend themselves with personal firearms, particularly in the situation of a home invasion… how impossible it is to justify a gun as a safety measure but also to store it safely (i.e., locked up, bullets locked up separately, etc.)… how puritanical our society is about sex but casual we are about violence… I don’t have the statistics anymore but I’m still a strong proponent of “gun control,” though “eradication” would be a better word.
I don’t much understand the general resistance to gun control. I attribute it mostly to insecurity and unrealistic thinking. The insecurity seems to be an underlying American trait, and many of us compensate by digging in our heels and insisting that no one even consider restricting our actions or perceived rights in any way. My belief is that the writers of the Constitution never intended for private citizens to own guns; I think “the right to bear arms” has to do with the right to form a militia in the case of oppression or war, and the right of people with reason to own one… hunters, once upon a time, though now I’m skeptical even on that count. I’d be willing to have a compromise: a sort of game preserve, only open for hunting, where the hunters store and keep their guns always on-site and there are clear boundaries outside of which the guns and bullets must not go. And the unrealistic thinking has to do with most of the pro-gun arguments I’ve heard, about the ability to protect oneself and a gun’s contribution to the security of their home and society.
I already realize that this is going to make some people unhappy, many of whom I like a lot and whose opinions I respect. I’m not interested in proselytizing or bringing anyone else over to my point of view; I didn’t go to law school, despite kick-ass scores on the LSAT, because I simply don’t enjoy topical debates like that. But it’s been on my mind – mostly because Baino posted a comment to last Friday’s post that got me thinking, and instead of flooding her inbox with my rambling, I posted it. I’m secure enough in my opinions to be willing to irritate those who aren’t secure enough in theirs to let me be.
pssst… what movie is the post title from? The followup line is, “Skill against skill alone.”