March 29th, 2006 07:13 PM
I too dropped him what I hope was a polite note. If he responds I'll post it if worthwhile. Everyone else has pretty much covered the foolishness of this kind of thought pretty well.
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March 30th, 2006 09:27 AM
I'm sending him this, as soon as I compose a short, sickeningly polite note:
By Rev. Andrew Sandlin
I haven’t discharged a firearm in twenty years. I have never, if memory serves, shot a handgun. Friends of mine who can best be described euphemistically as gun aficionados (Brian Abshire comes immediately to mind!) classify me as significantly less experienced than tender-foot in my "firearms skills." Aside from Biblically justified killing (for instance, capital punishment and the immediate defense of life), I abhor violence. I am not a member of the National Rifle Association, or even Larry Pratt’s Gun Owners of America, though I would be quite proud to be a member of the latter. My views on gun ownership do not, therefore, spring from any obsession with guns themselves, with their use, or with the damage they can easily produce. I have always found the pen and pulpit more effective weapons than guns.
Nonetheless, I suggest that the 1999 shootings at Columbine, Atlanta, and Ft. Worth reveal a glaring problem in the United States: an insufficient number of citizens carry guns. Crime, of course, is decreasing overall in this country. However, violent shooting sprees on unarmed citizens seem to be on the rise—at least they are getting much greater publicity by a ubiquitous media, hungry for a story of any kind, or perhaps even interested implicitly in championing the gun control banner. Ironically, however, these murders should lead us to think in quite the opposite direction: armed citizens are exponentially less likely to be shot than unarmed citizens; therefore, more law-abiding citizens need guns. This is so simple that only the "deep thinkers" in the secular universities and media could miss it.
The Rationale of Gun-Toting
When you and the other guy are both carrying a firearm, and when you have no particular desire to get shot, it’s quite prudent to avoid assaulting the other guy, whether physically or verbally. This is not, of course, an ironclad rule: Today, Mafia and gang members are not deterred from shooting others of their own kind merely because the latter are carrying firearms. Civilian war is an aspect of their modus operandi, and guns are simply a part of that equation. The problem with these murderous men (and all other murderers, for that matter) is their hearts, not their guns. As long as there are guns, wicked men will find and obtain them. If every last gun on the earth were confiscated and destroyed, wicked men would create them. If wicked men could not create them, they would create other lethal weapons (like bombs) from household items. Murder by firearm is a hamartiological (sin) problem, not a firearm problem. 1
Unless gun-toting murderers are on a simple kamikaze mission, they are not interested in forfeiting their own life simply to take someone else’s. In other words, they do not consider it desirable or inevitable that they be killed in the process of killing somebody else. If they know that the other guy is surely carrying a firearm that can end their life after they pull the trigger—or as they are preparing to pull the trigger—they might have second thoughts about their murderous intent.
Responsible Gun-Toters Save Lives
Take Columbine, Atlanta, and Ft. Worth as examples. If in each of these cases, the adults who were targets or victims of the murderous assault had been carrying firearms, it is almost certain that many lives could have been saved. Responsible citizens trained in the legitimate use of firearms could have wounded or killed the murderers long before each wreaked as much damage as he did. Would this plan have prevented all these murders entirely? Probably not. But a number of individuals would be alive today had responsible adult citizens been carrying guns and been willing to use them in a crisis. (In the case of the Ft. Worth church murders, I already hear the plaint, "What? Carrying guns into church, the sanctuary of worship?" I am reminded of the Early American Puritan settlers, ambling to church with a Bible under one arm and a musket under the other. "But those were different and much more dangerous times. Why, the settlers could have been attacked by savages at any time!" Hmm . . . .)
After the Atlanta shootings, Thomas Sowell perceptively wrote:
When people ask emotionally, "How can we stop these things?" the most straightforward answer is to ask: How was it [sic] in fact stopped? It was stopped, like most shooting sprees, by the arrival on the scene of other people with guns.
It is the monopoly of guns by people with evil intentions that is dangerous. Some of the most dangerous places in America are places where strict gun-control laws provide assurance to violent criminals that their victims will not be able to defend themselves.
What if every third or fourth person in that building in Atlanta had a gun available at the time? Under such conditions, it is very unlikely that Matt Barton could have shot 22 people before he was stopped....
The one thing that so-called "gun control" laws do not do is control guns. They disarm potential victims. People who do not care about the law can always get guns in a country with 200 million gunsand more coming in, both legally and illegally.
We can’t even stop millions of human beings from coming into this country illegally—and a handgun is a lot smaller than a person. That basic reality is not changed by politicians and media loudmouths who appeal to emotions and symbolism by crying out for more gun laws. You can always pass feel-good laws and ignore their actual consequences. In fact, we have already done too much of that on too many other issues.
The biggest hypocrites on gun control are those who live in upscale developments with armed security guards—and who want to keep other people from having guns to defend themselves. Affluent homeowners pay to have private armed security patrols cruising their neighborhoods. Many of them are also for gun control. Of course you don’t have to have a gun yourself when you are paying other people to carry guns for you. But what about lower-income people living in high-crime, inner city neighborhoods? Should such people be kept unarmed and helpless, so that limousine liberals can "make a statement" by adding to the thousands of gun laws already on the books? 2
If anybody should be allowed guns, those in low-income neighborhoods should. This is, not coincidentally, the very location about whose "proliferation of guns" liberals howl. We need to get more guns into the hands of law-abiding citizens—wherever they live.
This is not a "solution" to firearm murders. As long as men are not fully sanctified, there are no "solutions," only trade-offs. 3 Since limiting or forbidding gun ownership to law-abiding citizens would only assure their vulnerability to law-breaking citizens (and a law-breaking state, for that matter), the best way to diminish firearm murders is to put guns in the hands of the potential victims and teach them how to use those guns responsibly.
The Legitimate Use of Power Protects Life
Simply put, in civil society power is a deterrent to evil. (This is one of John Calvin’s "uses" of the law: it restrains evil men.) Many of the people today calling for the confiscation of guns on the grounds of a proliferation of gun-related violence were the same ones twenty years ago calling for the United States to disarm itself in the face of "nuclear proliferation" with the Soviet Union. They envisioned all sorts of apocalyptic scenarios by which the nuclear weapons of both nations could destroy every individual on earth "seven times over," or some other such idiocy. The fact is, however, for nearly four decades not a single American was harmed by a Soviet nuclear weapon and not a single Russian citizen was harmed by an American nuclear weapon. If, alternatively, the United States had disarmed itself, it would have been vulnerable to blackmail in the face of a regime bent on worldwide communistic domination.
Deter firearm murder; buy more firearms.
1. Andrew Sandlin, "Hamartiology and Gun Control," Christian Statesman, Vol. 140, No. 1 (Jan.-Feb., 1997), 5-6.back
2. Thomas Sowell, "Gunning for Guns," Jewish World Review, August 5, 1999, http://www.jewishworldreview.com.back
3. idem., A Conflict of Visions (New York, 1987), 25-27 and passim.back
Rev. Andrew Sandlin is Executive Director of Chalcedon and Editor-in-Chief of the Chalcedon Report and The Journal of Christian Reconstruction. This article was used with permission from Chalcedon Report
Try not. Do or do not, there is no try.-- Yoda
G4W is now, be "Vigilant Always" - Bruce, (vet)USASA, NRA, IDPA, USPSA, IHMSA, & USCCA!
March 30th, 2006 09:46 AM
An outstanding article; I've never read it before. Thanks for sharing!
Originally Posted by Agencyman
USAF: Loving Our Obscene Amenities Since 1947
March 30th, 2006 09:58 AM
Agencyman thats an excellent article from that minister, well thought out and presented. I hope (unfortunally don't expect) the newspaper reporter will thoughtly consider it.
Last edited by greg2536; March 30th, 2006 at 02:13 PM.
I encourage peace and carry one!
March 30th, 2006 02:04 PM
well I could only read about half...couldn't get through it all. infuriating.
--people ask why I carry, and I show them this picture. I think it says it all.--
NRA Certified Instructor--many disciplines
March 30th, 2006 02:30 PM
What we need
Amen to all that has been said above. Sadly too many people in my generation have failed to learn or were not taught two very important concepts: responsibility and accountibility. I'm the one making the choices and I'm the one that has to take the blame for it in the end. I can cry about my lot in life and blame it on MTV, etc. OR I can do something about it. I've read in posts here before where someone has mentioned how getting a CCW or CWP "mellows" them out and I agree. I'm aware, responsible, and accountible and maybe a few more in my age group should stop listening to the liberal media and quit playing the blame game.
"Never turn your back on a threatened danger and try to run away from it. If you do that, you will double the danger. But if you meet it promptly and without flinching, you will reduce the danger by half. Never run away from anything. Never!"
-- Winston Churchill
March 30th, 2006 02:45 PM
Amen! Thanks for sharing that.
Originally Posted by Agencyman
April 2nd, 2006 01:51 AM
I sent the author a brief, polite email. Everyone should take a moment to do the same. Imagine if we bury him in politely worded emails.
Here it is:
Dear Mr. Jamieson,
in your article "The price a culture pays for its love of the gun" you
claim that the guns used at the after-rave party in Seattle should be
blamed for the murders.
Humans have been killing fellow humans since the dawn of time. Guns are
just one tool among many. Before guns were invented (a very recent event
in human history), people murdered with knives, swords, axes, clubs,
stones, rope, chemicals... even with their bare hands.
You propose to implement "stricter gun control, restrictions on some
weapons, more thorough background screening of buyers, plugging of
loopholes and tough penalties for guns that are used in lesser crimes".
Do you really think that Kyle Huff would have just stayed at home if he
had not had any guns due to stricter "gun control"? Do you really
believe that a person who is determined to kill someone can think of
only one tool for the task - and will simply give up all efforts if that
specific tool is not available?
I do not think so. If guns are not available, murderers simply revert to
more old-fashioned but equally proven killing methods.
You say that the "Problem is, people keep killing people with guns". But
the sad truth is: People keep killing people - with their minds. If they
have the will, they WILL find a way.
That is how it's always been, long before there were guns. And no amount
of "gun control", registrations, restrictions, etc. will change that.
Especially since criminals do not care whether they can own guns legally
or not. They're up to no good anyway, so they might as well buy guns on
the black market.
"Gun control" only disarms the law-abiding. The only lives that "gun
control" saves are the lives of murderers. Bought and paid for with the
blood of their defenseless victims.
"So this is how liberty dies. With thunderous applause."
- Senator Padmé Amidala, "Revenge of the Sith"
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