Monday, February 19, 2007

Telling it like it is

It is no secret that I think that gun control laws are just about the silliest things ever. I know a lot of people, even close friends of mine, disagree with my opinion. That's OK. It is pretty obvious to me that with the inexorable decline in expectations of personal responsibility and the concurrent restriction of legitimate weapon ownership in many places around the world, things have gotten much less safe in recent years. On the one hand, societal attitude towards criminals seems to be: "There, there, you poor thing. You can't help it that you are an irresponsible asshole who preys on others. It's our fault. We as a society made you that way." Then, at the same time, we prevent honest, law-abiding people from protecting themselves against these miscreants. It is true: Wherever the ownership of firearms is criminalized, only criminals will have guns.

I always read the news releases of the Libertarian Alliance in Great Britain with interest, because their director, Dr. Sean Gabb, isn't afraid to tell it like he thinks it is. I don't always agree with him, but I do admire his spirit and his dedication.

Consider Dr. Gabb's statement in a recent pro-gun-ownership news release: "In fact, the only people who have no guns are the respectable. Those who do commit assaults are no more likely to obey the gun ban than they are to stop listening to horrid music or to wash their hands after using the toilet."

Great Britain has some of the most restrictive gun laws on the planet. It hasn't helped. A Reason Magazine article discusses why at length.

It hasn't helped here in Canada either, or in U.S. states where it is difficult or impossible to own guns for self-protection.

The positions on the topic, pro and con, are widely available. I am familiar with both sides, having discussed the subject many times with very bright and vocal friends who don't agree with me. I wonder how many people who react viscerally and negatively to the notion of legitimate gun ownership really know all the facts.

Probably not many.


  1. I'm pretty liberal in most ways, but agree with you on the gun control issue.

    Here in Montana, small household arsenals are the norm, however, our murder rate per capita (1995- 2005) was one of the 6th lowest in the US.

    Rape numbers are also low. I guess it's not as much fun raping and pillaging when odds are the woman of the household has a .357 in her nightstand.

  2. Good points, Laurie. Here in London, Ontario, historically one of the safest places around, there have been several home invasions recently, break-ins and thefts are out of control, and even murders are not uncommon. Why? 1.) No-one can protect himself effectively because kitchen knives and pea-shooters are ineffective against armed intruders and 2.) no-one ever gets properly punished for anything. It's disgusting.

  3. I'd like to totally disarm every one of those leftist mealy-mouths regurgitating the gun control propaganda, and set them down in the middle of south Chicago, IL or Los Angeles, CA for a whole night.
    What would you bet they wouldn't be a problem in the morning?

    The only difference between a Leftist and a Communist, is the Communist knows what he is doing!

  4. The problem is that the trend appears to be to keep anyone from thinking or acting for himself or herself. Somehow, the logic goes, decisions made by our elected are bound to be more reasoned and more effective than our own might be. And so we become ever more dependent on a state which claims to be able to help us and protect us, but in the long run does neither. A bankrupt government cannot support an entire nation after the so-called rich have been milked dry, and the police have never been able to, nor can they now, protect everyone effectively. Usually, they can only react to something that has already happened. Then, it is already too late.

  5. For a period of time my husband was a Federally licensed firearms dealer. During that time there were many laws passed and measures taken which lawmakers thought would solve the problem.

    My husband always made the point that only law abiding citizens would follow the new laws and it would make no difference to the criminal. In addition he pointed out that there were more than enough laws already that would help if they weren't being ignored.

  6. luckyzmom: your husband may have read a book called Unintended Consequences by John Ross which describes, in the form of a novel, what can happen (and indeed is happening) in the United States when anti-gun sentiment causes people to lose all reason and law-abiding citizens are targeted and persecuted by the BATF and other governmental agencies. It is a truly scary read, and at about 1,000 pages will keep a reader spellbound for a long time.

  7. I am very liberal.. but do agree on the issue of gun control. There is a weapon in my home. One of the things my ex did was encourage me to learn how to use a gun. It's just a tool after all and all the emotional content surrounding it doesn't make sense to me.

    Removing people's right to own a gun is not going to stop criminality.



  8. I don't know much about the gun registry, except that here in Alberta, I don't know anyone who agrees with it.

    All I can say at this point is: I have known a great deal of criminals. None of them had their guns registered. Funny... come to think of it.. none of them had guns that they themselves had originally purchased.

  9. Hmm.. that almost read like it didn't have a point.

    Hmm.. I guess that would be an effective way to explain my thoughts on the registry.

  10. The gun registry has been a monumental waste of money and human resource. And what has it accomplished? Less than nothing. There are more murders in Canada now than ever, at least in my part of Canada. And yes, Penny, you're right, the deeds are rarely done with a legal firearm.

  11. The way I look at it, had someone been allowed to carry a concealed weapon on May 28th, 2005, my stepdaughter may have had a chance to survive the gunfire that killed her and two others. The defense has been granted numerous continuances and it will be almost 2 years since her killer was arrested and put behind bars before he is actually tried for his crime.

  12. I agree, Les. An American friend of mine has, just be showing his weapon, deterred mischief-makers several times. When someone accosts you on a dark street somewhere, do you really know that it is only your wallet that they want, and that they will go away peacefully when they have it? No. Many individuals these day seem to engage in violence for its own sake. Your safety and comfort are the last things on their minds.