Some questions about guns

Huh?I am not American, nor do I live there, so I am very circumspect in what I say about that fine country.

What goes on behind another person’s borders is, after all, none of my business. However, I hope I might pose a question in the interests of academic enquiry, a question of reason and logic. I hope this won’t be perceived as sticking my end in where it’s not welcome. This is not a judgment, after all, it’s a yearning to understand.

The question goes out to all the advocates of gun ownership, and it goes like this. It is a cornerstone of gun advocacy that we need guns for self-protection. If this is the case, can you explain why we in Japan or Britain, where there are no guns, don’t get shot all the time?

Think about it. Take your time. I’m not going anywhere.

And while I’m on the subject, we hear much of the right of citizens to own guns. Can you clarify: do citizens have a right not to get shot? I ask because we don’t hear very much about that. Which carries greater legal and moral weight, the right to carry guns or the right not to get shot?

As I say, these are questions of logic, an honest enquiry into how things work, not an assault on or criticism of America.

In other words, please don’t shoot the questioner.

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About chrispagefiction

Author of the novels Weed, King of the Undies World, and The Underpants Tree, and story collection Un-Tall Tales; editor, freelance writer and all that stuff. At heart he is a London person, but the rest of his body is a long-term exile in Osaka, Japan.
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One Response to Some questions about guns

  1. It’s impossible for me to answer your question, because it’s difficult for me to judge what “get shot all the time” means.
    Are shootings a public health issue? Yes
    Should we do everything we can to reduce them? Yes
    Death by poisoning and motor vehicle are bigger health issues. The fact that we don’t have such a visceral emotional reaction to the daily poisoning death toll tells us something about how the media chooses to portray things. It doesn’t. It ignores them.

    do citizens have a right not to get shot? -Yes.

    Which carries greater legal and moral weight, the right to carry guns or the right not to get shot?
    -Most places in the US do not allow the open carrying of guns, so generally the right not to get shot carries greater weight.

    Due to the way the US became independent from Britain, it included a provision in the Constitution to allow a kind of reset button. If enough citizens get angry enough and show up with enough power, then the government is wiped clean and we start over again. Many Americans view this as a sort of fail-safe and would resist any attempt by the government to remove it.

    I don’t own guns, but I also would never trust the US Government to have a monopoly on violence. I think recent history proves me correct on that on both the civilian police and military side of things.

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