Ah… just another in a long string of anti-firearms blogs. Well, I hope not, but it probably will be. Here are some comments I have heard or read, and my responses:
“Guns don’t kill people, people kill people.” How inane is that? Of course it takes a person to pull the trigger, but how can they pull the trigger if they do not have a gun in hand?
“Guns protect our civil liberties.” How can a gun protect anything if it is not wielded by a person? How does this reconcile with the previous statement? I doubt it can do either.
“…more guns, not fewer, provide true security” NRA position. Putting guns in schools is going to do what for education?
“…schools should decide for themselves how to protect their children.” NRA President David Keene. Why should they need to protect against guns, given the two previous statements?
“From my cold dead hands..” Charlton Heston. A two-faced liar, Heston was more in love with his publicity and prominence than with reality. Heston once supported strong gun control legislation, but saw where the better publicists, and money, were. Heston was unable to rationalize his decision to switch, nor could he say when he changed his mind. He also stole the phrase he made iconic, and when directly challenged once about it all, he became abusive, which was recorded on camera. Not your average nice guy. A meaningless phrase that is really as threatening as it can get.
Astonishingly, the idea of having more guns in the community, which makes them available to people who should not have guns at all, is not going to make people safer at all, seems to escape the NRA and a lot of other people as well.
The UN is talking a treaty to reduce arms in the world, the NRA is going to fight it. How crazy is that. It is a $70billion business that kills more than one person minute 24/7, and these clowns want to not just continue it, but expand it? As the world’s largest selling terrorist weapon is the AK47, which is not manufactured in the US, why would they want to not support a ban?
The largest consumers of weapons has to be governments and terrorists and drug cartels. Governments use weapons for war, then sell the surplus to terrorists and drug lords. The terrorists and drug lords are then used by Governments in campaigns to spend even more money on armaments that eventually wind up in the hands of the very people they are trying to wipe out. The terrorists are also used to undermine civil liberties in all nations, and drug lords are used to fill prisons with other idiots. The US has a number of security acts of Congress, rationalized by the Senate, signed into law by the President that just tread all over the US Constitution. Australia has something similar, but we do not have “Amendments” to protect civil liberties, we have “common law”, which has been extinguished by similar security acts of Parliament.
The “Drug War” is well and truly lost, but no-one is publicly saying it- it is being downgraded in favour of terrorism. We no longer hear about drug busts or shoot outs or meth labs exploding, terrorism is far more prominent in the media and public conciousness.
The real trouble is that once a Government gets a taste for that kind of power, it becomes seriously addictive. In short, it is impossible to get that legislation repealed or changed without a challenge from the highest court in the land.
President Obama made it clear in a speech earlier in 2012, that the US Constitution did not apply to non-US citizens. No wonder Julian Assange is worried, after all, he has had more than one commentator, several politicians and advisers call for his assassination. Incitement to murder non US citizens is OK, apparently. What difference is this situation with that of Salman Rushdie and the book “Satanic Verses”. Rushdie was supplied protection by the British government for years. I cannot see the same for Assange, but I can see him being murdered. So much for the constitutional rights of anyone who is not an American. While we are on the subject. Why has his own Government, Australia, abandoned him to the vagaries of the Swedish justice system? Prosecutors already dismissed the matter once, so why has it been resurrected? There has to be causes not publicly announced, or mentioned in the British extradition court case. It should be obvious to anyone by now that there has been no negative consequences to anyone other than Assange. Freedom of the press be damned here, by the looks of it. If Assange is hunted for distributing documents leaked to him that the New York Post and other press blatantly published, then why have they not been held to account? More than a double standard here I think.
Guns and government, media and fear, all these things are, I suggest, products of the US reinvention of the tribal mentality. A once successful and now indolent society that is turning on itself. Cannibalism is never a pretty sight.
EDIT: Jack Reacher has just been released in this country and the first reviews are pretty ordinary. (Well, OK, film critics deserve a serve every now and again for the fatuous tripe they often write but it is the lack of understanding they frequently display that I find so mind-bogglingly inane.) Jack Reacher is a violent film, based in violence where violence is the answer to everything. That is the message inherent in US movies since before John Wayne. Sure, violence is entertaining, it can be funny, it can be poignant, it can be frightening, shocking even, but it is still violence. As long as it is that stylized and completely unrealistic violence of one man, or woman, taking on many, who can forget Uma Thurman in the Japanese tea-house, or John Wayne at the Alamo, or one on one Peter Griffin and the chicken, violent, but funny too. When it is too realistic, some will think that violence is the only way to solve their problems. Guns are accessible, guns are solutions to problems, that is a key issue that must be dealt with.
Very violent films, like some of Sam Peckinpahs’ movies, others like “The Godfather”, “Reservoir Dogs” “Kill Bill”, are not always indifferent to the effect of that violence. Too many movies are, or their “anti-violence” messages are too obscure, or too bland, to be clearly meaningful.
Another key issue is the essential ethics of the position that are being taken. Note, ethics, not morality, are the key. Is it ethical or unethical to continue with what is being done, as the answer to weapons seems to be even more weapons?