The arguments for or against the ownership and possession of firearms are all too often justified on the merits of whether they are necessary for defense or sport. Ultimately the question of gun ownership is a moral decision of whether individuals should have sovereignty and freedom to choose for themselves. Similar to political ideologies for or against limited government, those on either side of the issue are often worlds apart philosophically. Ultimately some believe in the freedom of the individual to act for themselves, while others believe that freedom is being free from the responsibility of having to make such choices. Ultimately some feel it to be a form of slavery when the normally natural conditions of personal responsibility and choice that life affords are denied them through artificial means. Others consider the liberty to choose responsibly or face harsh consequences as burdensome and relish what they deem a more carefree lifestyle of being taken care of by others, e.g. a supposedly benevolent state.
I will focus the remainder of this discussion on the deciders, i.e. those who want to act rather than be acted upon. Those who want to be acted upon rather than act for themselves wouldn’t want to be burdened with thinking for themselves anyway. Like those chained to the walls of the cave of Socrates’ famous allegory, only the deciders have the courage and faith to think for themselves and see reality as more than just a shadow of what it really is.
The first question that a decider might ask themselves is this: If an individual chooses to defend themselves with guns, engage in peaceful recreational sport and/or practice with firearms in anticipation of future military or other peacekeeping endeavors, why should society restrict them in such choices by the imposition of gun control?
An argument has been made against guns that asks why should we allow guns if we don’t allow citizens such weapons of war as grenades and rocket launchers? Such arguments fail to pursue the obvious followups to this question. Why wouldn’t we trust the ordinary citizen with grenades and/or rocket launchers etc. if there was a war on American soil? If citizens of our country were holed up in an embassy under attack would we deny such men and women these weapons of war? Certainly such weapons would be a grave responsibility for the average citizen in times of peace, but wouldn’t we be just as alarmed if our police officers carried rocket launchers and fragment grenades while on duty? So the real question that should be asked is: should the common citizenry surrender their personal sovereignty and trust and rely solely on a police force to protect them? This leads to such questions as: can police be everywhere at all times? What if one or more policemen turn rogue and abuse their entrusted power? Are police necessarily more responsible than other citizens?
While there are many well trained policemen, there are enough numerous bad examples of handling guns by policemen.
For example: The site http://www.ktvu.com/news/5441146/detail.html
contains a story posted November 30, 2005 about an Oakland police officer who injured himself by an accidental discharge of his gun.
Here’s a blog website that has information about more accidental gun discharges including a link to a video of a DEA agent teaching kids about gun safety and accidentally shooting himself in the foot!:
Some advocate that even policemen shouldn’t have guns that are lethal. This implies the question of whether deadly force is sometimes necessary. History has demonstrated that deadly force is sometimes necessary. Take the following story for instance:
April 27 2009:
Sheriff: Man killed 2 deputies after stun
PENSACOLA, Fla. — Two deputies killed by a soldier they were trying to arrest for beating his wife exchanged multiple rounds with the man who began shooting while on the ground after he was shocked with a stun gun, authorities said Sunday, a day after the men were killed.
“When that Taser released after five seconds, he came up shooting,” Interim Okaloosa County Sheriff Edward Spooner said.
“He went from just being disagreeable to using deadly force in a matter of seconds. It was a very aggressive move with a concealed weapon on his part.”
Spooner said that between 30 and 40 rounds were exchanged between Cartwright and the two deputies.
Investigators were working to determine the extent of 28-year-old Joshua Cartwright’s military and militia weapons training, Spooner said.
Cartwright was killed by deputies in a neighboring county after he fled a shooting range parking lot near Crestview where he killed deputies Burt Lopez and Warren “Skip” York.
Some may certainly think that these arguments are beside the point, that once we rid the world of guns, that things will be safer. This argument is as ridiculous as saying that once we rid the world of matches the world will be safe from fire! Ultimately when it comes to ensuring peace and security for ourselves and our families we shouldn’t sacrifice our personal sovereignty and freedom in the process. This is mentioned in the following blog:
http://ntconservative.wordpress.com/2008/01/10/security-vs-liberty-pt-2/ which paraphrased the following quote from Ben Franklin:
Those who would give up essential Liberty, to purchase a little temporary Safety, deserve neither Liberty nor Safety.
Michelle Malkin has a page that explains how this quote from Ben Franklin has often been misused by the liberals: