Monday, March 4, 2013

Guns!

I hate the gun argument that is going on in our country right now.  I am a supporter of President Obama, but I think he is wasting a lot of political capital by fighting this battle.  The appropriate place to discuss gun violence is not on a legal level, but a cultural level. I believe guns--any kind of guns--should be obtainable by a U.S. citizen. I also believe that drugs--any kind of drugs--should also be obtainable. Prostitution should be legal. Anyone--documented or undocumented--should be allowed to work and live in our country, visa or no visa. Gay marriage, straight marriage, and polygamous marriages should be legal. Abortion should be legal. Private schools should be able to teach whatever gobbledy gook they want, but they should receive no public funding, including bussing. Churches should be able to teach whatever gobbledy gook they want, but--like any business--should have to pay taxes.

In civil matters, the best way to change things is through social engineering, not laws. The law should always respect an individual's rights to pursue happiness, and make their own decisions, however dubious. Laws should protect individuals against discrimination, and should not only promote equality, but also justice.

In the areas I have mentioned above, any change a single citizen or group of citizens would like to see effected cannot be effected legislatively. We are a stubborn people. We fetishize violence. We are macho. We are backwards in some very real ways. We are reactionary. In many ways, gun rights activists are like teenagers: the more you nag them about their transgressions, the more they love their transgressions. The more you legislate their behavior, the more they fantasize about their role as some sort of revolutionary hold out.

Read 'Nudge' by Cass Sunstein. That is how social change of this variety effected. The culture must change, and then the guns will fall away. The culture changes--in regards such as this--through conversation, not laws.

I would much rather see President Obama spending his political capital on economic justice and social justice (positive actions), rather than spending his capital on legislating behavior (negative actions).

After all, it was he who opined that the constitution was a list of negative rights (things the government couldn't do to you) rather than positive rights (things the government could do for you).

Let's see more of that.

All of that being said, I think all of the president's executive orders on gun violence (abhorred by the right) were completely reasonable, and totally underwhelming.

2 comments:

Jeff said...

as always, we disagree on some philisophical levels, however i think, overall, what you are say is less govt. involvement in our day to day lives and let us live. on the same token, there needs to be less govt. dependency. our socitey has has turned to such a point that people think the govt. owes them something. I'm a firm believer in working for what you want and not looking for some govt. handout. there is a time and a place, i'm sure, where some folks need assistance, but too many have become dependent on it and too lazy to help themselves. I also agree that TPOTUS has way better stuff he needs to be spending his time on. like this continued financial crisis that he refused to address in any real way. A pay cut for janatorial staff in DC? really. How about a pay and benefeit cut for folks in the house and senate. How about cutting them to part time pay since that's all they work. Congress and house was never intended to be a full time position. it was a position of honor helping the people of the once great nation. They have become the biggest handout receivers of all. Cut their pay and make them get their own health insureance like the rest of us. that would save us a fortune.

Lodo Grdzak said...

I don't support the NRA, but I dont (in principle) support the assault weapons ban either. I guess like most things, I don’t give a crap one way or another. If USA wants to ban assault weapons, right on. I wouldnt fight the movement, but I wouldn't wake up early to help it either. One thing I would have to ask my more arty friends out there is if they'd ever accept having one of their works or performances banned or heavily censored by a government due to concerns over inciting violence. Or perhaps the “perverse” nature and ramifications of the content. Spike Lee’s “Do the Right Thing” (probably his only good movie) was barred from certain theaters and show-times due to concerns about inciting violence (the movie ends in a race riot while Public Enemy's Fight the Power plays in the background). And the great Henry Miller had several books banned (!) based on the allegedly “deviant content of the writing.” Well, I don’t think we should be making laws in the U.S. based on how the most retarded, aggressive, superstitious, or psychologically damaged person is going to react or mis-use their freedom. We assume the individual is intelligent, respectful, and has his senses. And if we don’t assume that, where are we?