Without a greater awareness of the mechanics of reality – whether on a philosophical, spiritual, or religious level – how could one ever measure the amount of evil (read: wrong doing/crime) in a society without a gauge on whether or not “evil” can transmute form and outlet itself through another channel.
Who is to say that if a gun is not available to a disturbed person that his crime doesn’t manifest by way of a fertilizer bomb? Where is the defining metric on this that an anti-gun perspective must have in order to be certain that a ban on firearms is the solution?
To me, this current conundrum of gun rights points to a deficiency in the understanding of the spiritual mechanics that govern our reality. This deficiency – is entirely enabled by America’s predilection toward religiosity, and its enmeshment with politics that self-sustain the problem in a bio-hazardous sphere.
Our rights were endowed by the creator…..the 2nd Amendment to the Bill of Rights gives us the right to bear arms…..If you’re a Christian you believe God gave you this right and if you are a Christian you are more likely to be on the Right – and here is where a dangerous opportunity to subscribe to cattle-thought is created. It’s a double drug dose of “fitting in” – both by party and religion – (and by further extension – nationalism) that becomes irresistible to the type of person who was already inclined to lull into organized thought-forms, gaining comfort and community in a life that is on cruise-control when it comes to independent thinking.
But the caveat here is this: although the aforementioned cast of characters is primarily responsible in the enabling of gun access, they are not primarily responsible for the gun crimes that are committed.
This reveals quite a fascinating philosophical vacuum:
1. the money to support the gun lobby comes from wealthy right wingers for whom conviction of gun related homicides are next to nil.
2. the people who are not only more often the victims of gun related violence, but also the perpetrators of gun violence are people who A) aren’t supposed to have guns in the first place and B) don’t pay the most money towards the platforms that support gun rights.
So if the availability of the gun itself were the problem, shouldn’t the rate of criminality be the same wherever guns are showing up?
Not unless inanimate objects can somehow take dominion over man and choose who and when they want to kill.
I often hear people outside the US criticize America’s high gun homicide rate as if it is only made possible by our right to bear arms. They often point to irrelevant comparisons like Nordic nations where gun violence is an extreme aberration and almost never occurs. But no one ever talks about how homogenic societies are not stimulated to commit gun violence. On the matter of individual gun crimes (as opposed to mass shootings, which I believe occur for entirely different reasons), It typically takes a divide between a shooter and a victim to catalyze violence, and in a homogenized society there simply aren’t any. In Norway, almost everyone is racially and ethnically unvaried, speaks the same language, are closer in economic cast in their mixed economy, and are irreligiously dispositioned. They are not, The United States of America, with 300 million people strewn across every imaginable economic incarnation, gradation of education, and every other adjective you can metric a population with. But differences alone still cannot account for what is an astronomical firearm related death toll as compared to other nations of the First World. Canada for example, has also a racially and economically varied populace and a high rate of gun ownership, but only 1/100th the number of annual deaths from firearms as compared to the US. What have we been missing from this equation?
Our genetic makeup.
I believe that the melting pot of American DNA has been seasoned with people who have certain personality traits, which many studies show to be genetic, but would influence nurture just the same. There are genes common in the formative peoples of America; lending themselves to similar behaviors in whom these genes are present. I.e.: go-getter gene has dark side of violence, conqueror/explorer gene has weak spot of becoming a non-descript terminator. Breaking points attach to these alleles and the problems we’re seeing are where those breaking points are. So how did this arise…..
- 1. America has traditionally been seen as the preeminent staging ground for success and freedom. This would be attractive to and attained by emigrants who most doggedly pursued that vision. What types of personality traits would people who left behind the life they knew, sailed for months, started a new life with little support in a new world, and actually succeeded, have? Drive, doggedness, determination.
- 2. Continued fighting and conquering: if not the British from the east then it was the Native Americans from the west, but they all had to be mowed down. What traits would 150 years of tumult, combat, conquering and slaughter attenuate in a person? Perhaps resiliency, survival instinct, and triumph.
Now, whilst ambition and force can certainly have their proper applications, what do you suppose is the dark side of someone whose traits are dogged determination, survivalist, and combative? They might be ego, fear and violence. As our society has been tempered over time, there is less of an outlet for the surges of aggression that these traits we still harbor apply on personalities. Sometimes those impulses are transmuted to athleticism, hunting, or video games. Sometimes they are not transmuted in a healthy way at all, and an act of violence is where it culminates. That is why the aggressive impulse is still salved by defensive behavior, such as owning a gun in the first place. Look how much Americans love football. Look at how aggressive football players have to be. Look how much the NFL loves guns (80% ownership rate). The gun is the manifestation of the trait.
There is always a new Wild West lurking in the medulla oblongata. Today it is Big Brother and/or someone else with a gun. America is still becoming. There are many groups and viewpoints vying for a realization of their vision of America to become the dominant one. This unspoken stance/motive is embedded in our collection subconscious and culture. And it’s what keeps our ‘perimeter defenses’ activated. We are perpetually in threat-assessment mode, which means we are running old instinct scripts like alerting our tribe to something that is different, feeling fear and then attacking it.
But, a balance must be found. Although our fears can be irrational and unconscious, the world is imperfect and some immunity most be maintained so that we can be protected against worst case scenarios without always having to dwell on them.
Appalling as the rash of recent gun crimes have been, I do not believe it is wise to interpolate them into the cause to revise our right to bear arms. I think people are overlooking a real time example of what can happen to a civilian population if they cannot defend themselves from a tyrannical government: Syria. 26 dead is a tragedy. 60,000 dead is incomprehensible, and would alter life forever if it happened here. Our right to bear arms, when it is administered with the right dose and methodology, works exactly like a vaccine against a larger danger.
The gun itself ought not be the measurement of gun violence. It is a far more complex amalgamation of human inclinations that inform the larger picture of what the having of a gun will mean.
If I point at a woman downtown and yell ‘witch’, nothing will happen. That wasn’t always the case. …And this is due to an evolution. They do happen. Religion has either created or endorsed nearly every societal ill that has befallen us. From manifest destiny, to slavery, to women remaining subservient, to diminished LGBT rights to now this – a consensual misappropriation of blame for gun crime. It was just ‘evil’. And that’s it. Don’t think past that point you’re done. …It’s all you have to say. Never mind an actual examination into why these aberrations occur, just use the matter to further the agenda of Religious Regressives to corral the masses toward religion by prodding them with fear and the abdication of having to think. Meanwhile, the real causality loop lies between mental health concerns and a legal age limit that needs to be adjusted. But these tributaries that cause and permit gun crime will remain unaddressed as long as people are done with their examination of the matter before they’ve started it, having concluded it was ‘evil’, and under the purview of the churches. And perpetrating that lie just allows us to create a villain and line them up as the next person to shoot, which is our new favorite pastime in America.
….The notion that one is adult enough for any concern of life when they are 18 – or 21 if it’s titties – is anachronistic. ..Amazing that if you’re 18 you’re old enough to acquire an instrument to easily end a life, but you’re too young to peek at dangerous titties.
If we could reexamine this antiquated standard, that at 18 one is permissed into all of adulthood, a reduction in gun crime would occur quite organically.
I propose two new (additional) standards to be met before gaining the privilege to bear arms:
1. applicant must be a homeowner -or-
2. applicant must be 30 years of age or older
It is not evil that is causing people to go into schools and the like and open fire. It’s mental illness. And forms of schizophrenia are being realized as the most frequent common denominator in otherwise unrelated criminal demographics or possible motivations. A requirement for a gun owner to be age 30 would mean that they are statistically past the point of likely onset of schizophrenia, which 75% of the time develops between ages 16 and 25. This should be screened for in schools like scoliosis, and people should be given preventative health care that is so badly needed but thwarted by a fear of mental illness stigma. Add to that the noxious notion that it is all caused by ‘evil’ and you’ve got a wide open schism for these outbreaks of mass violence to keep occurring.
Furthermore, the laxation in gun law allowing civilian ownership of assault caliber weaponry is indefensible. There is no nobility in the fact that a boy wants a toy. You are not in a trench staving off invasion from deer. The combat weaponry and armament that is available now would provide more firepower than some classes of warships at the time the 2nd Amendment was added. It isn’t in keeping with the spirit of the amendment to believe that boys have ‘rights’ to such toys. You can defend you and yours, you can arm yourself and take your spot in the South Shall Rise Again militia, but you cannot, singlehandedly, feel entitled to amassing a private armory that mirrors the imagined grandeur of your (actual) tiny penis.