A reader emails regarding the gun control debate and in particular the Piers Morgan vs. Alex Jones.
So yeah.. just got through reading the reporting about this and finally got time to watch the full broadcast:
To be honest, after watching that, I think most pro-gun advocates need to let that one slide. I’m sure the pro-control crowd, given time to see more than just the highlights and soundbits, will want some distance.
You don’t have to print what I’m saying here, but you’re welcome to if you like - if you want to blog it, that’s your call, cut and paste as you see fit.. grab what you need. If you’re re-printing, just include the statement from myself that I try to live, act and comment from a neutral position – I’ll hear out both sides then make my own judgement. I don’t comment from the left, right, or center, nor do I subscribe to their mailers – only what I personally believe, regardless of political fanboi-ism.
I’ve wavered on my (very ‘not matters much at all considering I don’t have a US citizenship’) opinion of the whole US firearms debacle. I don’t believe that civilians have a “need” for firearms like the “civilian” modified AR-15. I’m highly aware that 70-odd% of firearms violence is caused by hand-guns, not Assault Rifles. I’m well aware that considering it’s political and historical ramifications, the 2nd Amendment must be upheld.
But what exactly are the ramifications of that 2nd Amendment; what did those founding fathers mean; and what do those sacrosanct passages really entitle a gun owner to?
The full debate between Alex and Piers uncovers a lot – and it’s not the conspiracy about serotonin re uptake inhibitors.. or any other crackpot idea that Jones can make some money off now that Ron Paul isn’t being fucked over for his financial benefit.
In case you missed it.. “INFOWARS DOT COM!!!”
Alex Jones is the Alexei/Lucia Maria of US Gun Politics. He’s the example of the absolute worst of the argument, that level that Colbert doesn’t even reach in his satire. The problem is that one side uses reason, the other froths at the mouth- and because the former engages the latter, the latter is enabled.
I’ve spent time among the Ron Paul crowd, arguably the most Republican of the GOP. I’ve spent time among the Obama people, who are the Clinton people, who are the Carter people. And to look at both of their arguments, I see the flaws in both.
The Democrats are reacting, which they should, but in the wrong areas: I personally think they’re on the right track with universal background checks, particularly in the area of mental health, and closing loopholes like the “Gun Show Loophole”. But they’re reacting too late, to political footballs that are simply a hot topic to earn a vote.
The Republicans are reacting, which is, I guess, all they can do.. defend the 2nd Amendment, and manoeuvre around that basic premise. The problem is that their current argument (see Wayne LaPierre’s comments and their notorious press release) falls apart when they compare themselves to other countries – ie: video game consumption per capita.
I think the issue, that nobody wants to address as a potential political landmine, is the question of “Why are Americans so much more prone to deciding to go out in a ‘Blaze of Glory’ by shooting up a school before they top themselves? Is our national culture a bit… ‘fucked’?”