News or Popular Topic Commentary


Gun Control in the U.S.A.

This is another divisive issue in the United States.  People have a good bit of emotion invested in either side of this issue…they are passionate about it.  And for good reason - for some, a gun is a valuable tool which helps provide food and/or a source of enjoyable recreation.  For others, a gun is a very dangerous and perhaps even evil thing which should not be available to anyone except a government’s military.

When something like the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting in Newton, CT, December 14, 2012 happens - the murder of 20 young children and 6 adults by an evil young man named Adam Lanza - and guns are used as the instrument of their death, people grieve and are rightfully angry and ask the question, “Why?  Why did this happen?  Why is my child dead?”  And then they rightfully are looking to place blame somewhere.  Sadly, even if the person who killed the child(ren) is dead, it generally does not alleviate the desire for blame to be assessed and for something else to be done even if it will not bring back their children nor punish the person who perpetrated the act.  A loss of a child is a horrible thing to experience.

People on each side of the issue, I have observed, are generally unwilling to listen to those on the other side, just like most issues that divide people.  People who are defending their side of the issue, I have observed, often are unreasonable in both their arguments as well as in their treatment of the person who they might be disagreeing with.  Labeling other people instead of a reasoned discussion of the issues is the normal way of human communication.  Demonizing those on the other side of the issue is also the normal way of human communication.

Generally, the two sides of gun control are represented by those who believe there should be very few, if any, restrictions on personal gun ownership – and those who believe that guns are the primary problem causing violence.  Can the reader see that the two sides are in a basic disagreement before the arguments even start?  They are not arguing apples and apples, but apples and oranges.  Let us clarify this important truth.  A balanced, apples-to-apples argument would be:

A. Those who see guns as merely a tool with many valid uses and believe that there should be little government control over personal firearm ownership and usage.

 (This view is generally held by people who use guns for valid purposes or know those who do);

Versus

B.  Those who view guns as a very dangerous tool with few valid uses – and often used wrongly - and would like a good deal of government control - many laws, rules and restrictions - over private citizen gun ownership and usage.

(This view is generally held by urban people who do not own guns nor do they know people who use guns for valid purposes). 

As you can see, how the gun is used is not part of that balanced issue.  Why?  Because guns don’t cause violence, people do.  Guns are a tool that can be used by people responsibility or irresponsibly, or for good or for evil.

This issue is unbalanced due to the two perspectives that dominate it.  Instead of a debate on gun ownership rights, it is a disagreement between those believe they have a right, as a private citizen, to own guns, and those who believe guns are the cause of violence or are so dangerous in-and-of themselves that they ought to be heavily regulated.  To frame the argument another way – those who believe people ought to be able to own and control a tool, against those who believe the tool is the problem.

Just recently, there was an important discussion on a major news network with the president of the U.S.  The phrase most often used by the president to frame the debate or discussion is “gun violence”.  This phrase is often used by  those who generally are against private citizens having more freedom regarding gun ownership and usage.

The phrase, “gun violence” is at best misleading and at worst, erroneous, confusing, biased and harms clear thinking.

The phrase supports those on the side of the issue that believe that guns are evil not people.  People that believe this will often focus on the tool instead of the perpetrator.  You will hear them talk about the ‘bullets slamming into innocent people’ or other such language.  The purpose of focusing on the tool instead of on the person who used the tool to perpetrate violence, is because those who take that side of the issue have no real/clear solutions to the human problem of violence, and thus they focus on something they can do – which is to take the tool away or restrict the tool.

Again, the simple truth is that guns are not violent, people are.   Or said another way, guns don’t perpetrate crimes, rather people do.

If ‘gun violence’ is an accurate way to represent human violence, then ‘fist violence’ and ‘knife violence’ and  other such tools used by violent people to harm others should regularly be spoken about.  In fact, there is much more ‘fist violence’ happening on a daily basis than gun violence.  It just so happens that fists are not as effective in harming people as guns.

The point is that VIOLENCE should be the focus and it should be a discussion separate from the tools used to perpetrate the violence.

In other words, to have separate discussions about “fist violence” and “gun violence” and “knife violence” etc. would be irrational, since fists and guns and knives don’t harm people by themselves since they are merely tools.

Dear reader, tools are not violent, people are.

A gun or a fist or a knife NEVER just jump up by themselves with the intent to harm a human being.  There is ALWAYS a person who picked up the tool with the intent to harm another person.

To deny this is irrational and sadly proves that there are bigger problems than even violence, namely people refusing to acknowledge what is true…like people having a delusional perspective like human beings are basically good.

So, how come ‘fist violence’ or ‘knife violence’ are phrases that are never heard?  Because those who control the mass media are generally against gun ownership and want to avoid the simple truth that people are the cause of violence, not guns.  Or because those in the mass media who are for responsible gun ownership get caught up in the emotional arguments of their opponents, allow their opponents to frame the discussion, or can’t articulate the truth clearly or are unwilling to do so.

If we can’t properly identify a problem, then we will never be able to solve it.  What is behind the tool?  A person willing or eager to use violence to get his/her way.  What  is behind their act(s) of violence?  Loveless-ness empowered by selfishness, self-pride or fear - the basic ugly flaws of we human beings, are the problem.  Read the rest of this web site to find the solution to those problems, because laws or political philosophies or governments or ideologies or policies or religion or mental health sessions are not going to solve that problem.  Only faith in the Right Leader will solve that problem.

In general, those who are against private gun ownership have a belief that people are essentially good, and this belief runs counter to reality and the fact of violent people harming or killing other people.  They really don’t want to face the fact that people have darkness and evil in them and are the cause of violence, because that is a contradiction to their general belief that human beings are basically good...and by extension, that they do not have darkness in them, for their self-pride will not allow that.  So, when they are faced with a young man murdering children, they focus on the tool used to avoid the truth about the perpetrator.  They will also find all kinds of excuses and justifications based on psychological beliefs, as to why the person who murdered those children ‘was mentally ill’ and thus not really at fault.

It was announced that the federal government is planning to spend one-half a billion dollars on “mental health” services to try and prevent violence like occurred at Newton CT.  That is largely a waste of resources, because the government doesn’t have the answers or resources to solve the fundamental problem of removing evil in people…money cannot solve that, nor can the silly psychological philosophies that the ‘mental health professionals’ rely on and employ in their work.  In fact, working from a wrong belief that people are essentially good – which almost all of the psychological doctrines which ‘mental health’ professionals believe - will undercut any effectiveness for a solution.

The concept of ‘mental illness’ is grounded in a belief that people are basically good, and only some ‘illness’ causes them to act badly.  So, it is the ‘illnesses’ fault, not the person’s fault…ANYTHING to avoid the simple truth that people are inherently evil and need something to overcome that, because that points to a place where they don’t want to go…namely, spiritual or metaphysical truth and ultimate accountability.  Those who are set in their self-pride or fear or selfishness simply will NOT let go of their essential belief that people are basically good, because if they did, they would have to use the mind they were given to pursue that, and that pursuit, if done well, WILL LEAD to concepts like “guilt”, “punishment”, “accountability” or ultimate justice.  These concepts are incredibly unpopular with a people who have turned away from the simple moral truths of human existence and have placed themselves in a cage of self-pride and fear and selfishness.

Perhaps the most unreasonable or irrational view on this issue is held by those who believe that the tool is the problem and is the CAUSE of the dead and injured people, NOT the person acting violently.  However, there are also many voices on the NRA side – those who want as few restrictions as possible to private gun ownership – who are also unreasonable.  For example, certain guns are clearly designed for hunting, a reasonable use of a gun – to provide food.  These guns – classified as ‘long guns’, as opposed to hand guns – typically have limited bullet/cartridge capacities since a good hunter will only need a few shots to kill the prey.  These guns have features appropriate for hunting animals, like longer barrels for improved accuracy, etc.

There are also long guns which are designed for killing people, are styled after military weapons, and have appropriate features like large magazines that can hold many bullets/cartridges.  It is NOT reasonable – in a functioning democracy where the people elect their leaders  – for private citizens to own military/kill-people type long guns.  At this time, it would be unreasonable to believe that the United States is not a functioning democracy.  I did not say an ideal or perfect democracy, but rather a functioning democracy.  The fact is the people are still choosing their leaders even while the people increasingly don’t know what a good leader is.

Hand guns primary purpose is to be used against other people, whether in self-defense or in wrongful violence.  They cannot be reasonably argued to be needed for hunting.  Therefore, hand guns should have been strictly regulated from the beginning of a nation’s forming, but sadly, they have not been in the U.S.  so the reality is they are widely and generally available to anyone who wants one.  Obviously part of the solution to hand guns being used for wrong purposes is to aggressively take them away from people who use them to perpetrate violence.  Put strict control laws regarding handgun ownership and usage in cities.  Control the sale of hand guns to law abiding citizens only, and remove hand guns from illegal circulation at every opportunity.  Provide harsh punishments for the perpetrator when a gun is used in illegal activity.

The basic problem is that there are many people who will use a gun to commit crimes and violence.  Therefore, the best solution should focus on taking guns away from these people and keeping these people from getting guns.  Buying, selling and trading rules need to be in place to help accomplish that.

This issue needs people to compromise to achieve what can be achieved without solving the basic problem of people controlled by fear and its child hatred and thus loveless-ness.  Since the people of the U.S. have turned away from the Resource that can solve evil and hatred, they are left with controlling the tool often used to accomplish their hatred.  In other words, more and more people will be acting out their fear and hatred using violence, and if a gun is available to them, they will use it.  Therefore, the only solution that can bring any relief is to seek to control the tool used to perpetrate the evil.  The fact is that guns are very effective tools for killing people, and thus can be rightly characterized as dangerous.  It is reasonable for dangerous tools or substances – like explosive or certain chemicals, etc. – to be regulated.

If human beings were in fact basically good, there would be a lot less violence and guns would be used properly for only useful and good purposes.  Unfortunately, this is not the world we live in.  Therefore, it is a true statement that if guns are outlawed, then only outlaws will have guns.  And if only those with a propensity to use violence have guns, then what do you think will be the result?

Pandora’s box has been opened, so to speak.  Guns – dangerous tools that should only be in the hands of responsible, good people – are available to all people.  Therefore – while it would be better if only the good people had access to guns – it is too late for that so it would be irrational to take the tools away from the good people knowing the bad will possess and use them.

So, given these facts, here is a reasonable solution much of which is already recognized and being worked on:

  1. Have very harsh penalties for people who use guns to perpetrate wrongful acts.  If a gun is purposely used to harm another person, ultimately amputating hands or fingers would be both a just punishment as well as an effective deterrent;
  2. Work diligently to control the sale, purchase and trade of guns to make sure only responsible, law abiding people possess them. 
    1. Aggressive search and seizure of guns from known felons in urban areas;
    2. Use background checks, waiting periods, etc. to accomplish this;
    3. Implement harsh penalties for illegal sellers of guns;
  3. Make illegal the sale, purchase or trade of guns which have features that allow for killing many human’s quickly;
    1. Removing use-against-people type guns from availability in the market place – all military style use-against-people long guns as well as hand guns in high crime areas;
  4. Have much less control over long gun usage in rural areas where hunting is part of the way of life for many, and much more control in urban areas where gun usage is almost always going to be of the use-against-people nature.

Key points to remember in this debate:

…are worthless and a terrible waste of resources.

The issue of gun control is a relatively minor issue regarding human life.  Please see the rest of this web site to see where sound reason leads to the most important issues of human life like the purpose of life, what does a human life lived rightly look like, how am I supposed to live my life, does God exist and if he does, what is He like and what does He want of me, and what is true love and how can I live a life characterized by true love?  What will become of me/my soul when my body dies?  Do I have the ability to set my after death destiny?