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Response to DanTex (Reply #75)

Mon Dec 19, 2011, 05:36 PM

88. "Philosophy" or "the most important point to me"

 

I missed the humor of your post.

But the underlying philosophical issues don't depend on who happens to be sitting on the supreme court, or even what it says in the constitution. And this always trips up the pro-gunners. Because part of pro-gunner indoctrination involves memorizing long lists of talking points about the second amendment. But when asked to actually give a philosophical justification for why gun ownership should be considered a fundamental civil right, alongside things like free speech and fair trials, beyond "becuz its in da constatooshun", you just get blank stares.

Philosophy?!!! How about this. You have a right to life, but not a right to the means to procure food. You have a right to marry, but not to the means to seek a suitable life partner. You have a right to an education, but not a right to freely examine all views on a subject. You have a right to work, but not a right to procure the necessary tools.

Silly catch 22s.

The anti-gun "philosophy" generally admits that you have a right to life. Some will even admit that you have right to defend yourself. But they will deny that you have a right to effective means to defend yourself. In DC, your "intellectual" brethren had a law that even though you could have a long gun in your house, it had to be disassembled or locked up. You could not load it, even if you or you family was under lethal attack. That is the "philosophy" of gun control, the actual law defended by gun control "philosophers."

People interested in reading about the "philosophy" of gun control in the real world can read my OP here:

http://www.democraticunderground.com/discuss/duboard.php?az=view_all&address=118x170607

Gun control's "philosophy" is that the best way to protect decent people is to insure that they are disarmed in the face of violence. It's self-refuting.

But, regardless of what the framers thought, or how Scalia decides to interpret it, the most important point to me is that, gun ownership, in today's world, has nothing to do with maintaining and participating in a functioning democracy or a free civil society.

Finally an honest statement. Hilarious, but honest. Who cares about the Constitution or the intent of the people who wrote it? Who cares about the history or the proper interpretation? The real point is you and your personal opinions. The honesty, late as it is on the scene, is refreshing.

I am forced to agree that—to you—that is most important. I agree that—to you—Ms. Parker, one of the original people on the DC case that became the Heller case was free. I agree that—to you—a person can be free while she is under direct and credible death threat from a drug dealer and forbidden by law to have the means to defend herself. I agree that—to you—having the technical right to defend oneself while being legally denied the means is compatible with "free civil society." I agree that your premise—your personal views are the important thing—is compatible with your conclusions.

A gun is an object, which can be both useful and dangerous, and it should be regulated as such, without all the hyperbolic talk of "freedom" and "tyranny". As I pointed, there are plenty of free, prosperous, democracies in the world with rational gun laws (almost all of them, in fact), and the people in places like the UK and Canada would simply laugh if you suggest that thousands of them should die every year for the sake of "gun rights".

Again, I must agree that—to you—people who, like Ms. Parker, are required by their legal systems to depend on the goodwill and mercy of felons are living in free societies.

And the reason that pro-gunners insist on elevating gun ownership to the level of a civil right, is that the NRA line can't possibly survive any kind of rational cost-benefit analysis. If we look at the amount of good that comes from overly lax gun laws in terms of self-defense, recreation, etc., and then weigh it against the negatives in terms of death and violence, it's not even close. It takes just a few seconds of comparing the US gun violence situation with other nations to figure this out.

Hmmm, correlation equals causation? Once again, I must confess that this is true—TO YOU.

The problem, though, is that, there is no plausible reason that gun ownership should actually be considered some kind of fundamental civil right that is inherently more valuable than public safety. The right to free speech, or fair trials, these are fundamental rights that are worth sacrificing some safety over, because they are essential to a free democratic society. But gun ownership? Please...

So being able to speak freely against the proliferation of drugs (which is what garnered Ms. Parker her death threat and attempted break-ins) is crucial to a free society? I agree. The drug dealer's right to a fair triail if he managed to kill Ms. Parker is crucial to a free society? I agree. But the right of Ms. Parker to defend herself with an effective weapon when a drug dealer tries to follow up on his death threat, that is not essential to a free society?!!! This is where we part company. I can only agree that that is so TO YOU (and your fellow traverlers in Europe, Canada, the Joyce Foundation and the like).

A person who is required by law to die rather than load a weapon is not free. No amount of spin will fix that reality.

But given that we're only talking about what makes sense TO YOU, I must concede that you are correct. That is the way things should be—TO YOU.

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