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On making my world a safer place

Here’s the lead to a piece written in March entitled “why the gun is civilization“:

Human beings only have two ways to deal with one another: reason and
force. If you want me to do something for you, you have a choice of
either convincing me via argument, or force me to do your bidding under
threat of force. Every human interaction falls into one of those two
categories, without exception. Reason or force, that’s it.

In a truly moral and civilized society, people exclusively interact through
persuasion. Force has no place as a valid method of social interaction,
and the only thing that removes force from the menu is the personal
firearm, as paradoxical as it may sound to some.

When I carry a gun, you cannot deal with me by force. You have to use reason and try to persuade me, because I have a way to negate your threat or
employment of force. The gun is the only personal weapon that puts a
100-pound woman on equal footing with a 220-pound mugger, a 75-year old
retiree on equal footing with a 19-year old gangbanger, and a single
gay guy on equal footing with a carload of drunk guys with baseball
bats. The gun removes the disparity in physical strength, size, or
numbers between a potential attacker and a defender.

The rest isn’t very long. I encourage you to go read it.

(via Samizdata. I hear that Neil Boortz read this on the air recently, although he got the source wrong. I wouldn’t know. I don’t do talk radio. I do know that Marko the Munchkin Wrangler is going on my list of blogs I check in on occasionally.)

{ 5 } Comments

  1. Ken BuchananNo Gravatar | November 20, 2007 at 7:23 am | Permalink

    More sticks, more stones, to break more bones, makes the world a safer place? Yeah, right. If you want to make our world a safer place, an excellent beginning would be to remove all of the guns and ammo. I know… that’s not going to happen. It makes more sense than giving everyone access to a firearm!
    This is a well written article. It’s a load of crap but, still, very persuasive. If someone were to put a gun to my head, in an attempt to convince me otherwise… it would still be a load of crap.
    (Even if I too had a gun and could get the drop on him!)

    (sigh) Peace. -K.

  2. cziltangNo Gravatar | November 20, 2007 at 8:21 pm | Permalink

    One of our fundamental differences. I’m convinced the argument is correct. I’ve quoted William Ralph Inge before: “It takes in reality only one to make a quarrel. It is useless for the sheep to pass resolutions in favor of vegetarianism, while the wolf remains of a different opinion.”

  3. Rat JrNo Gravatar | November 25, 2007 at 4:22 am | Permalink

    Who was it that said guns weren’t dangerous it was the bullets? … Or something to that effect? Was it Chris Rock? Personally I’m in favor of guns, they are pretty and being a girl, I wouldn’t mind having on when up against mugger. Cause I suck at fighting and I’m not going to get close enough to anyone to bite them. It’s either shoot them and run or just run and scream my head off.

  4. ColeNo Gravatar | July 6, 2008 at 1:28 am | Permalink

    I used to be firmly in the guns-are-evil camp, but my opinion has changed since the days when the first person to tell me their opinion on something had my unwavering support and I actually started researching both sides of an argument.
    Guns do make it a lot easier for someone to hurt another person, for whatever reason, but what really has to be looked at is the reason. If you ban guns that doesn’t totally eliminate them from society, those who really want them and will do bad things with them will still be able to get them through illegal channels. So now only the criminals have guns, granted not most criminals, as most wouldn’t have those kinds of connections or money, but those who simply mug old ladies don’t always carry weapons either, as a 300lb. dude can kick an old lady’s butt without a knife or gun, and if he does get caught the mere presence of a weapon will add thousands of dollars and years to his sentence. But even if your common criminal no longer has a gun, they are still a common criminal, and still intent on causing harm, and they will, with a lead pipe if they have to. Gang members will still fight each other, only now they have to do it with knives. Innocent people can still get pulled into those frays, they can still die by being stabbed to death because they wore the wrong color in the wrong neighborhood. Perhaps it would be worse because a person wearing the wrong color bandanna won’t get their quick death by bullet through the head, but instead gets treated to a full minute of having a knife repeatedly stuck in their gut and then left to bleed to death.
    Other countries who have banned guns have a much lower rate of crime, in all areas, that includes crimes where people only got beaten up and crimes where nobody got hurt. Some countries who have just as many guns as here also have much lower crime rates, and a fraction of the number of deaths from guns, even after taking into account population. Some countries who don’t have guns have twice the number of crime related deaths a year, they’re just not by guns. America doesn’t have more violence because we have more guns, we have more guns because we have more violence. Taking away the guns doesn’t eliminate or even reduce the amount of violence perpetrated on one person by another, it just changes it.
    On a personal note, I think giving people intent on harming others a gun is more humane for the victims (unless, of course you know they’re intent on hurting someone, then you should just stop them altogether), given the alternative of being beaten to a bloody, still half-alive pulp by a bat.

  5. cziltangNo Gravatar | July 9, 2008 at 9:26 pm | Permalink

    Interesting. I’ve heard a lot of arguments about guns, both ways, but I have to say this is a pretty unusual combination. I am especially intrigued by the “we have more guns because we have more violence” line. I’m not sure I agree, but it is definitely food for thought.

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