Guns, gun control, and their discontents

I’ll be up front; I don’t give a fuck about folks’ right to own guns. I do, however, care a lot for a little old thing called the Bill of Rights. To weaken any of its protections is to weaken them all. The Second Amendment has already been weakened to mean only guns. 2nd Amendment crusaders are effectively gun crusaders. The 2nd Amendment refers to “Arms” with no reference to guns. The gun nuts stood by while daggers, spears, blow-guns, swords, nunchuks, crossbows, switchblades, blackjacks, throwing stars, etc… were made illegal (this short, off the top of my head, list  are all illegal in the US or parts of the US.)

A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.

No mention of guns, but if arms includes guns, logic dictates that it also means every arm less lethal than the most deadly firearm that we qualify for protection. With this understanding, it is clear that we have already lost 99% of our 2nd Amendment protections. Gun nuts do not care about the 2nd Amendment, they care about guns, machismo, and a pseudo-patriotism (which serves to justify the other two.)

That leaves me very little sympathy for the NRA and its minions.

On the other hand, behind the histrionics of the other side of the debate, is little else other than anti-ruralism.

Some numbers may help to illustrate this. Guns account for approximately 36000 deaths, 60% of these are suicides and 3 percent are accidental. This leaves around 13500 gun homicides a year.  As many people die from automobiles, falls, or accidental poisoning as die from all of guns and suicide exceeds them all. All of these other dangers can be lessened without infringing further on the Bill of Rights. If you really cared about saving lives, why not reach for the low baring fruit? Mostly because the anti-gun folks aren’t as anti-gun as they are anti-gun culture.

So, neither side really garners sympathy while both support the Orwellian concept of a national database of the mentally ill. This leaves me in the awkward position of not caring about guns while simultaneously opposing further restrictions on them.

In short, gun nuts need to become weapons nuts to gain my sympathy, while anti-gun nuts need to amend the Constitution to gain my sympathy. Until then, I can only feel contempt for both sides of the debate.