Guns for Everyone!

5 05 2007

From the NYT:

In March, for the first time in the nation’s history, a federal appeals court struck down a gun control law on Second Amendment grounds. Only a few decades ago, the decision would have been unimaginable.

I’ve always been one to believe that guns don’t kill people, people kill people.  That being said, I don’t see guns as particularly useful.  I think that it is the culture around ‘the gun’ that needs to go.   Idealy, we need to eliminate the need for people to use guns to kill other people.  I don’t mean just teaching everyone martial arts, but rather the culture of violence that seems to be so large in the United States.  In western Europe the number of people killed each year by guns is significantly less than in the United States.  I don’t think that it is because there are stricter gun laws in Europe.  I think people just aren’t as violent.  We can learn a lot from our European counterparts.

And no, I don’t support the NRA, nor do I own a gun, let alone many guns, as to necessitate an entire rack.

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2 responses

14 05 2007
katetribbett

I think the whole Bowling-for-Columbine-culture-of-violence arguement is pretty weak. I tend to think that gun violence has a lot more to do with poverty and poor social services (areas in which the US falls far below Europe). I would think the arguement that Europeans are just less violent is pretty shallow and fails to look to the last 1000 or so years. Maybe they just like organized mass violence whereas Americans prefer smaller scale violence.

15 05 2007
Mitchell

I would point out that the Columbine shooters were not subject to ‘poverty and poor social services’. That being said, I don’t neccesarily disagree with you. I don’t think though that you can say there is a direct link between poverty and gun violence.

The United States has a unique relationship to guns, perhaps going back to that whole civil war thing. Despite Germany’s recent history, which I believe you referred to, they still do better in per capita number of gun related deaths than the United States. It’s not because Germany is more wealthy than the United States – in fact Germany ranked 13 places lower than the United States in the 2006 UN Human Development Index.

I stand by the idea that we have a cultural problem in the United States. It’s not that we have rappers rapping about shooting people, or that we have violent video games – it’s that we produce an inordinately large number of people who see violence as a viable solution. It shows a level of immaturity that we should be embarrassed about when we compare ourselves to the Europeans.

here are links of where i got my numbers:
http://www.nationmaster.com/graph/cri_mur_percap-crime-murders-per-capita
http://www.infoplease.com/ipa/A0778562.html

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