American Culture

More guns isn’t the answer to America’s gun problem

The gun violence that plagues the US has a simple answer. Contrary to the opinions of gun fundamentalists, It’s not “more guns.”

What is it with gun rights fundamentalists? They have a singular answer to every question about crime and violence in America – more guns.

Church shootings? More guns for parishioners.

School shootings? More guns for teachers.

Burglaries? Home invasions? More guns for homeowners and renters.

Carjackings? More guns for drivers.

Muggings? Vehicle attacks? More guns for pedestrians.

Robberies? More guns for shopkeepers.

Domestic violence? More guns for women.

Attackers with knives? More guns for everyone!
What’s next, more guns for jaywalking? More guns for speeding? More guns for gingivitis?

Except that if you try to pull a gun in a carjacking or mugging, the criminal will probably kill you before you can get it out.

Except that arming teachers is a moronic idea that will only lead to more dead children.

Except that adding guns to a household with domestic violence increases the chance that the abused partner will die by that gun – even if it’s her gun.

Except that guns in a home increase the chance of successful suicide and fatal domestic violence, all to allay fear over something that is a miniscule probability.

About the only situation that doesn’t call for more guns is suicide. Suicide by gun is a tragedy to these people, but it’s clearly a result of mental illness and not the gun’s fault. Except that’s not what the data says – suicides are far less likely to be successful when the attempt doesn’t involve a gun.

And the gun fundamentalists want to be able to take their guns everywhere too. No so-called “gun-free zones” like schools, government buildings, museums, churches. If guns aren’t allowed, then clearly it’s a soft target for a criminal with a gun, right? More guns in more places.

It’s always about more guns.

And they’re completely predictable when it comes to gun laws too.

Universal background checks? They might screen out legal buyers accidentally, or prevent a gun fundamentalist from selling to anyone he/she wants to, so they’re bad.

Licensing? That’s just a way to make a government database of gun owners, and that’s against the Second Amendment!

Mandatory gun insurance? We already have laws on crime and those aren’t enforced properly, so start there. Second Amendment!

Waiting periods? They might prevent a woman from protecting herself from an abusive partner with a brand new gun! Second Amendment! And pay no attention to the domestic violence data….

Assault weapon ban? That’s a “modern sport rifle” to you, and there’s feral hogs around here. Heller decision! Second Amendment!

Maximum magazine sizes? Target shooting is annoying when you have to change your magazine every 10 rounds. Feral hogs. Second Amendment!

Untraceable guns (ie 80% receivers)? Those aren’t gun parts even though you can’t use them for anything else. Second Amendment!

3D-printed plastic guns and magazines? Those gun-free zones like airports will be safer if someone can concealed carry a plastic gun in to protect travelers from a lunatic with a gun. Second Amendment!

Restrictions on felons? This is about the only one some gun fundamentalists agree with, but for some reason most of the gun fundamentalists who agree with these limits are white while most of the ones who don’t are black. Funny that….

Last I checked, the Second Amendment wasn’t a blank check to own any gun you want. The Heller decision was poorly ruled, but even it said gun restrictions were legal. As if the plain text of the Second Amendment was unclear on that fact (it’s not).

And now we have gun fundamentalists cheering the armed parishioners who stopped another Texas church shooting before it got really bad (“only” two dead) instead of addressing the root of the problem:

Too many easily accessible guns.

Guns don’t make you safer. They don’t make me safer. They don’t make anyone safer. That’s the experience of the entire rest of the world that’s not actively at war, that has a functioning government, and/or that isn’t awash with violence due to drug money from the US.

You want less gun violence, have fewer guns. It really is that simple.

I’m not sure what it’ll take to convince gun fundamentalists of that, though. They’re worshipping their idol of steel and lead and smokeless powder, and they’re just as misguided about their idol as the Israelites were about their golden calf.

1 reply »

  1. Someone should Photoshop that golden-calf scene from The Ten Commandments and put a gun up instead of a calf. It would be perfect.