In the wake of last Friday’s tragedy, I have seen the best and worst of people, as is usually the case in the wake of these seemingly endless national crises. My heart goes out to the parents and families who lost loved ones on that day. There is nothing in this world that can compare to the loss of a child, and I am grateful for the fact that I am not fully capable of understanding that pain. Our lives are indeed rare and precious gifts that should not be taken lightly, nor ever treated cheaply.
Each time we have one of these horrific events unfold, (and believe me, noticing that there is such a thing as a context here which includes the phrase, “each time,” is in itself something terrible,) we have a group of people who lead an evil charge which in itself is almost as insidious as the crime itself. The leaders of this movement feign sorrow and grief as a pretext for their own political gain. I do not know what the political leanings of the victims of this tragedy are, nor do I care. That is not what’s important here. What is important is that immediately after the events of Friday unfolded and while those family members were still numb with grief, the anti Second Amendment crowd went into overdrive. Members of the media sent twitter messages to surviving family members trying to solicit anti gun segments for their various talking head television shows. President Obama went to Connecticut on Sunday for a photo op with the grieving families and to deliver his speech supporting an initiative to legislate away our right to bear arms. Senator Feinstein this morning thought that now, the time was finally right to introduce legislation again, that would seek to end gun ownership in America. Any opposition to the mob mentality now capitalizing on the raw emotions of a nation in mourning is of course going to be painted as cruel, callous, and part of a mentally unstable fringe, (while we all no exactly how well reasoned mobs tend to be.)
Just a couple of thoughts however for my esteemed friends of the political left, who lie awake at night hoping for the next American Crisis to unfold, so that they might be able to convince a newly frightened mob to trade away their Constitutional Rights for the illusion of that warm and fuzzy feeling of security. These thoughts are also aimed at my friends in that mob, those who are sincere in their grief, and are prone to being swept away with the knee jerk reactions so unfortunately prevalent in the national reactions to these types of tragedies. One, unspeakable crimes of violence committed by one citizen of the world against another are as old as man kind itself. All previous attempts to simply legislate this behavior away have met with the same success as banning guns would. That is to say, no success what so ever. For those of you who are Christians or Jews, when Cain killed Abel, back during a time that predated hand guns, he managed to make 25% of the world’s population a victim of violent crime, and he did so in one of those vaunted, “gun free zones.” For those of you who are not Christians or Jews, 5000 years ago, in a book written by man which attempted to give an ethical guidance through allegory to their fellow man, some wise leaders realized that humans taking other humans’ lives in a violent manner was a problem and used one such story as an attempt to show that people should refrain from such behavior, even though 5000 years ago, the entire planet was a, “gun free zone.” What the author of the Bible happened to be, be it God or Man, was insightful. The Bible realized that people will be committing these senseless acts of aggression against each other, and further realized that it is not society as a whole who bears responsibility for their heinous acts, but the individuals who commit these unspeakable acts of evil themselves. It was Cain who killed Abel, and not all of society.
In that same book, written thousands of years ago, were some important pieces of legislation. Those of you who are Christians or Jews believe that the Ten Commandments come from God. One of those Commandments is the prohibition of taking the life of another. those of you who are not Christians or Jews, you can at least recognize that this book which attempted to lend ethical behavior to its readers through faith, also included a law prohibiting this exact type of violence. Murderous rampages were every bit the problem before guns were invented as they are today. The major difference of course is who we blame. In ancient times, we had the wisdom to blame the perpetrators of those crimes, rather than the abstract of society as a whole. If the blame lay strictly with the perpetrator, then it would not be possible to inflict a mob with a sufficient amount of fear in order to have them vote away their own freedom. That’s the reason behind the impassioned pleas to finally do something designed to prevent these heinous crimes from being committed.
The problem of course is that we will never be able to magically legislate Utopia. this is the flaw of the political left, and with the frightened mobs who follow their lead. There will never be that perfect society. No matter what the form of governance, economics, or how our societies are put together, there will be some contradictions. Not everyone will be happy all of the time. Our society of limited government, self determination, and freedom is no exception to this universal truth. Comparing what we have to Utopia, while not comparing it to the alternatives being offered up however is a huge mistake on our part, should we fall for this. I have seen the argument proffered recently that the Second Amendment is somehow an infringement to the ideals set forth in the Declaration of Independence. Putting aside for the moment the fact that this entire line of thinking is silly at best, let’s take a moment to analyze it. First, the Constitution is the law of the land, while the Declaration if Independence is not. Secondly, The Fourth Amendment recognizes our right to be secure in our homes and persons, and to defend ourselves against those who would seek to take our homes, possessions, or very lives from us. The founders of our nation knew that Utopia was not possible, and that evil does in fact exist in this world. British soldiers traipsing about the countryside and disarming the colonists was after all one of the primary reasons that the colonists decided upon revolution. It just so happens that the founding fathers recognized that it is the Second Amendment that allows the remainder of the Bill of Rights to continue to be in existence. There is a reason why the political left wants to rid us all of our ability to defend ourselves, and that reason is it limits their ability to rid us of our free speech, right to be secure in our persons, houses, papers, and effects, our right to be protected against unreasonable searches,seizures, or confinements.
Rate’s of violent crimes have neither increased nor decreased at all in those societies that have formerly allowed private gun ownership and then banned guns. There are plenty of examples of this having taken place in our world recently. England, Canada, Australia, and Japan have all rescinded their citizens’ right to bear arms. Much like the Biblical example given above, it has done nothing to mitigate the true cause of senseless violence. Crime rates have stayed the exact same. The reason is simple, it is people who commit these unspeakable acts, and it is people alone who bear this responsibility. People, with our ability to rationalize, show great acts of compassion simultaneously with great acts of evil, are the one constant in each of these situations. We can not simply be legislated into being nice all of the time. Gun legislation will not be able to do anything with that fact. All that will happen is that we will limit our ability to defend ourselves when the inevitable does happen, that people will continue being people, no matter what rules we pass in order to alter that fact.
Schools are a, “gun free zone,” which simply means that whenever one of these sick evil individuals decides to demonstrate to the rest of us exactly how cheaply they view human life to be, they will choose that exact location for the tutorial, for that exact reason. Lanza doubtless knew that his mom’s elementary school was the one location where he could shoot up the place unfettered by people shooting back at him.
Life was considered cheap by Adam Lanza, and his ability to procure weaponry was nothing more than an obstacle to be overcome for him. If it had been impossible for Lanza to find a gun, life still would have been considered cheap to him. Cain would still have killed Abel, irrespective of what he had at his disposal.