Friday, January 4, 2013

Don't Believe the NRA, an Op-ed

Op-ed in the Shore News Today

To the editor:

“The only thing that can stop a bad person with a gun is a good person with a gun.” No one is better than the National Rifle Association at coming up with simple canards designed to mislead the public to a bizarre result. We’ll soon see how many Americans are gullible enough to buy it.

Even though the NRA would like that simple ditty to be the last word, just think about the unintended consequences. When I take my grandchildren up on the boardwalk to go on the merry-go-round it would not make me feel safer knowing all the adults in the crowd were packing guns. Even good people lose their tempers. Are you likely to have more violence or less if lethal force were just a pocket away?

The other fear gun worshipers use to separate you from your good sense is to create a dangerous threat to something you highly value like an “attack on the Constitution.” If the Second Amendment were strictly interpreted, the only ones with a constitutionally protected right to a firearm would be those serving in the National Guard (today’s “well regulated Militia” that the second amendment plainly states is the basis of the right to bear arms). If you doubt this just read the second amendment. It won’t take much of your time because it’s only one sentence long.

Other mind tricks used to scare you: The “slippery slope” argument is the standard choice for anyone with a losing case on the merits. It goes like this: If we regulate the access to automatic firearms or “cop-killer” ammunition the next thing the evil government will do is take away your hunting rifle. Apply the same logic to setting the driving age at 16. What’s to stop them from lowering it to 9? Therefore there should be no driving age restriction. Logical, but absurd.

Ask yourself who benefits if you feel you need a gun to protect yourself. People who sell guns will sell more of them if they sell more fear. And people who are afraid want you to feel the same way. If you feel constantly under threat, then that slow simmering anxiety will soon become normal to you. Just replace it with the pleasure of holding a gun. You’ll feel so in control. It’s a persuasive reason for owning a gun.

Personally, I don’t share those fears. And the pleasure part has always seemed a bit creepy to me.

Jim Tweed
Ocean City

1 comment:

  1. Typical idiocy from someone who knows nothing about guns, the law, human rights, or much else.