Monday, June 13, 2016

An interesting question

And one that cuts to the heart of partisanship over principles: If the Orlando shooter does not represent all Muslims, then why does he represent all gun owners?  Now folks could easily say gun laws, preventing killings, it's different.  But I'd be interested to see how they say it is different.  Clearly they would.  They would not say 'because we love Muslims but hate gun owners!'  Even if that was the case, they wouldn't be stupid enough to say it.  So it is a good question, if not a bit snarky.

Of course the opposite could be asked.  If we shouldn't use him to represent all guns and gun owners, then why should we use him to represent Islam?  I'm not saying there aren't answers, but I would be curious to see who had the best ones.

Just kicking things around.  I had hoped to avoid plunging into the politics of it all for at least another day, but almost the entire planet seems to have moved to full blown punditry, so I figured I'd join in.


  1. Alright, this may be long, but bear with me. (also using "you" in the sense of 'whoever is reading' not anyone in particular)

    I look at right as anything you can do freely. If I take you and drop you in a remote field in the middle of nowhere, you will be able to speak anything and everything you want, worship anybody you want (except for those faiths that require human sacrifices, that would be hard to do alone), expect privacy, and so forth. If another person is dropped into the field with you then without requiring anything of the 2nd person, the two of you could talk about how great the field is (freedom of assembly) or share news about the field the other person is from (freedom of news). Those are all rights.

    Anything one has to put effort into is a responsibility. The 4 vital being shelter, water, food and defense. You can stand in that field and shout to the heavens "I am a human being! I have a right to water!" and it will not create rain clouds nor induce rain. You can stand in that field and shout at the ground "I am a human being! I have a right to food!" and not a single stalk of corn will sprout at your feet. No, all of that requires work. You have to construct your shelter, you have to get water, you have to get the field to grow. But because you work to get those things, they are then yours and you have a right to defend them against any man or beast that feels like taking it away.

    Now of course after countless years, we humans have figured out that we can trade responsibilities. If you've got some primo water, and I've got some primo ground, you can give me some of your water and I can give you some of my crops and we're better off for it. That's freedom of trade.

    ANY TIME the government LIMITS us from performing these responsibilities then it must be up to the government to compensate for the difference. If the government says, "you cannot grow food here" or "this kind of food here" then it is up to them to say "here is your food."

    Thus, if the government says, "you cannot defend yourself from attackers" then it must step up to provide the protection I am now denied.

    If they want to take away guns, then the government will have to become more invasive and restrictive on privacy so that it can ferry out threats faster or provide everybody with round the clock bodyguards. And part of that protection might be "don't let in new people we don't know much about and could be a threat."

    Though I also think the question is kind of wrong too. We could probably handle immigrants fine if the entire culture wasn't set up about how awful, bad and wicked America is. That probably doesn't do much for assimilation efforts (notice how often these bad actors are SECOND generation) so until we fix that, it just seems best to stop all immigration from everywhere for awhile.

  2. Though I also think the question is kind of wrong too. We could probably handle immigrants fine if the entire culture wasn't set up about how awful, bad and wicked America is.

    I think we could handle many things better if our entire culture wasn't set up around that mantra.

  3. That sir, is the billion dollar wisdom right there. ;)

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  5. He doesn't represent all gun owners. He represents disturbed people on law-enforcement watch lists who under no circumstance shouldn't be allowed to buy a gun.

  6. If there was a way to keep the guns out of his hands in a way that was laid out and followed due process and didn't compromise law abiding gun owner's abilities to possess means of self defense, I absolutely agree. The problem is that part of the post where so many are heaping scorn and contempt on gun owners in general. And it's not just secular sites. Go to some Catholic sites to find out how he merely represents the lot of gun owners in America. Which is why some gun owners would be justified in wondering how fair such laws would be, if those advocating laws that would have kept guns out of his hand seem hard pressed to distinguish between him and the rest of the gun owners in America. Especially when you have a Justice Dept. running around, bolstered by the media, in suggesting the real threats to America are those rascally right wingers (that would be those folks who cling to their religion and guns). A way to keep guns out of his hands? Sure. But it requires more honesty and perspective than I"m seeing right now for so many who are calling for that very thing.


Let me know your thoughts