note: They say you should never write angry, or you should never write when you aren’t detached from the subject, but I guess I will break all the rules and do it anyway…
A while back I wrote a post about how causes like Occupy, Anonymous, Medical Marijuana, and bit torrent all have in common, and what happens to the very best ideas. Those who stand for what is good in these things are used as patsies by those who seek to use the cause, the technology, or the situation for personal gain.
This week the world has been saddened by the mass killings of children in Newtown, Connecticut and the mall shooting in Newport Beach. It’s incredibly sad to think that 20 very innocent children had their lives taken by one whackjob armed with his mother’s gun collection. It’s incredibly sad to think that this is so easy, that it keeps on happening without end.
What comes out of it? Well, President Obama said the typical “we gotta do sump’tin”, and that set off the gun lobby in a very predictable fashion. Watching mental midgets like Alex Jones cry out that they are “coming for our guns”, and seeing the almost endless parade of pro-gun wingnuts cheering him on is enough to make anyone cringe. These are people who should be contrite and concerned for their fellow citizens, but they are not. They are worried only about their rights to bear arms, no matter what harm is done to others as a result of their person desires.
Yes, for the gun nuts out there, I understand. By taking a poorly written clause of the constitution and spinning it just so, you have the right to bear arms (just which militia are you part of, anyway?). However, I think that this standing on the head of a legal pin to own something that has little positive benefits and pretty much only negative benefits seems almost self-defeating. I cannot think of a bigger contradiction in life than someone who wants to be “safe from all the guns” by owning a gun. The proliferation of weapon toting criminals in the US is exactly as a result of the gun culture that exists. According to a US Dept. of Justice, Bureau of Justice Statistics, Guns and Crime, 4/94 report, there are 341,000 handguns stolen each year in the US (and that is old data, the current numbers are likely much worse). That means 341,000 guns on the black market, with many of them ending up in the hands of criminals. So what do the pro-gun people suggest? The best way to fight all of these guns on the street is to buy more guns – which get stolen and end up on the street.
This is a perfect example of where a “legal right” to own guns has been subverted by those who seek to arm themselves to the teeth against whatever and whenever, to the point where it no longer makes any sense. It seems to have the horrible knock on effect of allowing the marginal and the sick in society to get their hands on “legal” weapons, and to perform horrible, unspeakable acts with them.
I have yet to have a single pro-gun person justify gun ownership without making self-referencing points. We need guns because of all the guns type stuff never makes much sense to me. Your desires of unlimited gun ownership without much responsibility has left the US awash is weapons, where ever street corner hood and every housewife in a minivan is packing heat. The results are there, 20 innocent children and a handful of brave adults dead because a Mom decided that it was good to have a pile of guns around a house with her mentally unstable child. The desire to use all of the limits of a “legal right” without considering the longer term implications is really the problem here.
Oddly, when I visit sites like Torrent Freak and read the discussions about piracy, I find the same sorts of people that I find in pro-gun groups. These are people who are standing on the heads of legal pins, hiding behind the well intentioned and reasonable people, hiding behind a “cause” to further their own personal needs and desires. The right they claim to be fighting for is “free speech” but the reality is it’s more to do with their own desire for “free consumption”, without considering the longer term implications of their actions. Just like the gun lovers, poke these people (seemingly mostly younger people) with a stick and watch out for the reaction.
What is truly sad is that the US (and much of the world) has degraded itself down to a series of bizarre legal absolutes. You MUST have absolute free speech, you MUST have access to weapons, you MUST be allowed to do anything you want… and all of it without much consideration for others. It’s “me me me” in a screaming chorus like the seagulls from Finding Nemo – and equally moronic. The true nature of society is that your actions have repercussions on other people. Your decisions to arm yourself or to take what is not lawfully yours has implications beyond the scope of what your are considering when you look at it from your selfish, self-serving point of view.
Those who trade away tomorrow for short term pleasure today ruin it for all of us. For 20 children in Newtown, they don’t get that choice. Too bad the Alex Jones types of the world can’t get off their high horses long enough to see what their steed is trampling on.