Thursday, December 17, 2015

Jonah Goldberg warily circles around the truth of things without getting there. "Why The War On Guns Has Failed."

From Herschel Smith: "Guns were never really the issue. It was always all about control, as it is today. Guns give the power of self defense, against home invasion, muggings, beatings, active shooter situations, and yes, against tyrannical states. Nuclear weapons (to answer the usual critic of this position), which no one knows where to detonate because enemy and friend are intermixed everywhere, are no match at all for fourth generation warfare in the neighborhoods, streets, hollows, valleys, highways and mountains of America. Don’t ever underestimate the power of guns to hold tyranny at bay, and since the gun controllers don’t, they always try to change the subject to safety, righteousness, or anything else. Jonah is on the right track, but he just isn’t quite yet there, and hasn’t quite completed his journey."


Anonymous said...

The journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step.

I figure Mr Goldberg is about a mile into his thousand mile journey.

B Woodman

Chiu ChunLing said...

"But what Jonah misses is that while there may not have been a moral underpinning or ideological foundation for smoking, there is for gun ownership."

It's not accurate to say Jonah misses it. He just doesn't acknowledge any grand philosophical importance to it beyond the fact that guns have significant practical utility. Which means that "if more effete urbanites owned firearms just like us uneducated country bumpkins," they would approach the question of gun control with that utility in mind and would probably not be losing ground by looking like idiots every time they talk about the subject. We shouldn't forget that America once had almost no gun control, and it is the anti-gun culture which is an aberration in our history. While some of it was produced by impoverished urban immigrants from Europe (where the peasant/nobility class distinction between those permitted arms and those forbidden them has never died out), the 'effete' anti-gunner isn't a first or second generation European immigrant barely scraping by on mill-work anymore. It was the product of a generation that grew up with gun control.

But that gun control was put in place by people who knew guns in a more practical sense and believed that "commonsense" restrictions were in order. So Jonah has been proven alarmingly right, by the prior history that gave us the anti-gun legislation we're now rolling back.

The fact of the matter is that, while the Second Amendment provides that the right to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed, there is room for defining what constitutes an armament suitable to be born in the defense of a free state. I think it would be cool if private citizens were allowed to own Davy Crocketts. But I can't make an iron-clad argument that they are really suitable to be born in the defense of a free state. For one thing, they really stretch the definition of "man-portable" right to the limit, and I don't believe that one can reasonably posit an unlimited personal right to bear weapons which can't actually be born by a person. For another, they also aren't very suitable for use in defense of your own territory, or for personal defense at all, given how very dangerous even the most successful use is to the user (and the territory in which it's used).

So I would support commonsense restrictions on exactly what someone was legally permitted to do with their Davy Crockett, even though I'd still favor letting private citizens own them. Having a law that says you have to keep it disarmed and heavily secured against unauthorized access does not seem like an infringement of the Second Amendment to long as nobody is exempted from those rules (especially officers or agents of the government). I wouldn't accept the same judgment about, say, short barreled shotguns, because they obviously have practical self-defense utility even if they aren't standard military kit. But what constitutes an armament suitable to be born in defense of a free state does involve a judgment, make no mistake.

Chiu ChunLing said...

And when both sides are equally informed in their opinions, there will be a real debate about the subject, and reasonable parties on both sides will have to recognize that there are limits. Cigarettes will probably never make the cut for protection as an armament suitable for defense. Most firearms that don't blow up the user or the entire surrounding area probably usually will. People's ideas of what "blow up the user or the entire surrounding area" will evolve as society becomes comfortable with weapons that were previously considered "shockingly dangerous". Heck, maybe we'll all have personal shield generators in the future and setting off a Davy Crockett will just be a matter of making sure you don't become liable for too much property damage in the process.

Which will be fun. Or maybe I'll just watch someone else do it, and we'll all whoop and shout and then fly home with our personal anti-grav boots.

Anonymous said...

In the aftermath of this whole thing coming to a head, and we all know someday it will, "progressives" and their ilk must be treated like the Tories of Revolutionary times. A ticket out of here to anywhere in the world that will have them, as they are no friend of liberty. That's provide we win , of course. And if not, then they can live in their state-run utopia as slaves for eternity.

Anonymous said...

This quote is the essential message that needs to be taught to the next generation of gun owners. Simple & succinct.
Bravo to Herschel.