Fear mongering despite reality: the right to self defense

There is something about guns:

“What if someone who spies you walking down the street thinks you look suspicious? What if you become a target for would-be George Zimmermans? Or what if the man you argue with, or potentially insult or offend, even unintentionally, is armed and irascible—and the argument escalates?”

“The gun-rights movement claims it is a staunch defender of the peace, contributing to and bolstering law and order. As gun rights are currently advanced, nothing could be further from the truth.”

“LaPierre’s argument for being armed boils down to this: Americans are on the verge of—or already sinking into—a state of anarchy, where it is each man for himself. In that state, “the government can’t—or won’t—protect you…Only you can protect you,” he warns.”

“The cumulative effect of these efforts is a society where security must be upheld or enforced by individual gun owners, who could misperceive what justice demands in any given situation. Our police have a hard enough time with this task. Consider the controversies in Ferguson, Missouri, and Staten Island last year, where unarmed black men, implicated in minor crimes, died because police used excessive force.”

“A common feature of the many police shootings perpetrated over the last year, and highlighted in the media during and after Ferguson, is that police now assume their suspects to be armed. Given the state of affairs the NRA has fostered, this may be a prudent and understandable assumption. But it also means police are instinctively cautious, hostile, and all too ready to use their weapons against ordinary citizens. In an over-armed society, we may also expect to see a steady uptick in the number of cases involving police brutality or excessive force. And then, as the NRA would have it, the government is most fully and clearly the people’s enemy, too.”

How Gun Rights Harm the Rule of Law – “Second Amendment activists are redefining the public sphere, and with it, American democracy” by Firman Debrander provides an illustration of how modern debate is often not much more than irrational argument. In terms of the quote above, consider that the assertions about the Zimmerman and other cases are contrary to fact and that the assertion about the “gun-rights movement claims” is an ad hominem straw man. There is no substance in the essay. There is only fear about what is imagined might be that hasn’t any historical basis to support it. 

The facts are that the increase in legal gun ownership has resulted in a decrease in crime and that gun control laws have not been show to have any influence on whether or not the police will encounter armed criminals. The redefinition of American democracy lies at the feet of those who insist on redefining the second amendment and impugn the character of the American citizen by asserting that they will become violent criminals unless restrained by a benevolent government. 

Just how can you debate anything with someone who wants his own reality no matter how distant it is from the truth on the ground?

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