For the sake of this blog, I frequently read through the news and other blogs regarding topics related to self-defense and the prevention of violence and victimization.
I have often found way too many posts about gun-related politics. I have even come across many blogs dedicated solely to gun-related politics. Pro-gun bloggers make posts about all sorts of shootings and incidents while claiming that more guns would have prevented them by enabling the victims to defend themselves. Anti-gun bloggers make posts about the same incidents and say that more gun control would have prevented them. Plus both make random posts simply supporting or opposing gun control.
Personally, I dislike having to sort though those posts. I see too much focus on guns, and I doubt gun control or the lack of it will prevent much violence and victimization.
For example, 17,000 murders take place each year in the United States. I highly doubt that more or less gun control will change the number very much. Most of the statistics shown about guns seem highly politicized and mostly irrelevant to me.
I think we need less focus on guns and the politics involved. When guns are illegal, murders, rapists, and other assailants can use illegal guns or commit their deeds without guns. When guns are legal, very few people actually possess them anyway and even pro-gun people generally support legally disallowing access to criminals and other mentally unstable people.
We have more important issues. We need to put our resources into finding ways to reduce violence and victimization. We need to forget about changing the legal status of guns and instead find a way to stop murder and rape.
Anyway, I feel like simply summing up how I feel about guns theoretically. (I do see the irony considering my previous comments.)
I support the legalization of personal guns for self-defense for two main reasons. Firstly, I support freedom as a top priority–believing it most helpful to most individuals and to society as a whole. Secondly, for those who oppose gun ownership, I believe they can better reduce it through persuasion rather than coercion. I feel the same way about other victimless crimes such as drug possession and prostitution. These actions do not inherently include an act of victimization.
If someone owns a gun or takes drugs, but the person does not hurt anyone else, then I say we let them. Regardless of whether they own a gun or take drugs, if they try to attack someone else than I say we physically stop them.
When people exercise their freedom stupidly, I do not want it taken away. You may think it stupid to take drugs, own guns, or to commit other exercises of freedom. However, I generally believe that you can best stop these in a persuasive way rather than with the coercive power of illegalization. For example, public service announcements, advocacy groups, and so on can inform people about the dangers of drugs, guns, and such–thus trying to convince the people to voluntarily give up the supposedly bad habit.
What do you think?