Was Asked my Opinion Today
I've been very quiet at work on guns for a while, not to mention I was gone for a while until today. This morning, an acquaintance at work that I have spoken with occasionally approached me on the subject of guns. He said he had overheard me and some of the other guys talking about going to the range and it had inspired him to dig his handgun out and go to the range over Christmas.
He went on to say, "I want to ask you a question because I value your opinion. I'm also very interested in your response because I'm sure you've been asked this already. With all of the talk about assault weapons, why does anyone need a rifle like that?"
My response (in a very calm and professional manner):
"Why does anyone need alcohol? Cigarettes? Or a car that will go 100 miles per hour? Any of those things kill way more people each year than so called assault weapons, yet most anyone would argue it is a right. Should the government ban auto makers from manufacturing a car capable of exceeding the highest posted speed limit in the US? I mean, it's illegal to go over that, so why do they do it? If you enjoy alcohol responsibly, does that make you guilty because someone else can't? No. No more than one crazy person with a gun makes responsible gun owners guilty for what they chose to do. Punishing the innocent will not deter the ones intent on becoming the guilty.
Now for an answer that isn't another question. Would you agree that most people calling for a ban of these weapons would argue that only military and police need them? (He replied "Yes."). So, we can establish then that you, or whomever would be making such an argument, affirm the police do indeed need them (he replied "Yes.") OK. Who do the police deal with day in and day out that they need these weapons? The general public...the same general public that we deal with day in and day out. They're not out there in foreign lands fighting armies, they need them to deal with the general public. Why is it they need them to deal with the same people that we don't? (He had no answer.)
He then said, "How many times have people had to contend with large scale lawlessness?" I said, "Do you remember the riots after the Rodney King incident? Communities were abandoned by the police and left to fend for themselves against armed mobs. How about the chaos after Katrina? There may not be many, if any, times in a person's life when they need a gun but when that rare time comes nothing else will suffice."
In the end, he said, "You make some very good points and you articulate them well. Now I know how to respond when someone asks me the same question."
Was Asked my Opinion Today
Outstanding post. Thank you for sharing.
Re: Was Asked my Opinion Today
I like your level headed response to your co-workers question. If only you'd have converted an anti.
I do agree, we are hard pressed to turn those so entrenched in emotional thought that they cannot understand reason.
It can be done, but requires much time, patience, and gentle perseverence.
Thanks, we need more of this calm, professional, reasonable thought disseminated.