Monday, June 22, 2015

About Recent Events

I have, in general, kept quiet about the whole Charleston, SC shooting because
  1. my regular readers doubtless know my feelings on the matter anyway, and 
  2. it's really tiring having to make the some arguments that fall on the same deaf ears.
I have however felt the need to say something to counter, or at least address, all the invective being thrown at gun owners. This manifested in a series of  Facebook posts yesterday that were complete nothing statements like "As a responsible gun owner, I feel it's my duty to inform everyone in Charleston that I like pie."  And while that was good for laughs on Der Lederhosen, it struck me at being insufficient for this blog. 

Then I came across a very interesting article (courtesy of Sebastian), and I knew what I wanted to say. 

Dear Gun Control Adherent or Undecided Reader:

I, like you, was shocked and horrified about what happened in Charleston last week. Two days after that, though, something else occurred which also shocked and horrified me;

A seven-year-old boy is reportedly among the three people killed in Austria by a man who ploughed his car into crowds in the country’s second-largest city and then reportedly started stabbing people.
A witness told the Wiener Zeitung newspaper that dead bodies were left lying face down in the road after the vehicle sped through streets near the the historical Herrengasse in Graz.
The killing only stopped when the driver parked his battered car outside a police station.
More than 30 pedestrians, including three children, were hurt at several locations during the rampage and 10 victims were in hospital with serious injuries. One patient was in a critical condition on Saturday afternoon.
Now, I am certain we can all agree that this is a terrible tragedy. 

However, I put it to you: If, after reading this, you do not feel that Austria needs to immediately implement stronger, "sensible" car control legislation in order to prevent tragedies like this from happening again, then I wish to congratulate you:

You are now thinking like a gun owner.

After all, you didn't get in a car and run into 30 people, killing 3 and seriously injuring 10. So why should the government restrict your car-driving rights? Why should the kind of car you own be regulated simply because some vicious jerk decided he wanted to hurt a lot of people?

This tragedy was performed with an SUV, but no one is seriously considering banning, restricting, or regulating SUVs. When people are killed by arson, no one seriously considers banning, restricting, or regulating matches and gasoline. So why, then, should we law-abiding and responsible gun owners be penalized when one jerk decides to shoot people?

If, however, you are now thinking "Hmm, yes, more car regulation would be a good idea," I would like for you to carefully consider the following questions:
  • Are you willing to give up your car in the same way you are asking gun owners to give up their firearms? After all, it could be reasonably asked that who, in an urban area, needs a private vehicle? Regulated public transport or specially trained and vetted taxi operators would suffice.
  • Are you willing to accept licensing and restriction upon internet access and electronic devices simply because they might be used in terrorism, or in cyberstalking, or in child pornography?
  • At what point are you willing to say "Enough is enough! These are my rights and I will not tolerate more encroachment upon them. I have committed no crime; I will not tolerate being punished for the criminal acts of others" ?
You need to know the answers to these questions, because eventually the attitude of "Pass more laws to prevent human behavior" will result in you losing something which is important to you. And when that happens, dear reader, you will discover how little-c conservative you are regarding this change. 

To which I will say: Welcome to our party. 

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