Wednesday, December 19, 2012

The Gun Control Debate: My Thoughts

I get the different perspectives of this argument.

Most of it revolves around fear and trust: fear of losing something or someone, and a trust of each other and that the 'right' thing will be done.

Those that are for the right to bear arms, have a fear of the impingement of their "rights" and fear for personal and social protection, but deeper, likely a fear that somehow this country will slowly transform into George Orwell's "1984" or Nazi, Germany. I get it. I too, don't want to lose what's great about our country.

While I also get it that we can't just stand as the "innocent" bystander to the most heinous of acts, and just point to the individual as the problem. It's a fear that the easy availability of guns can get into the wrong hands, and so the government should at least make an attempt to protect its people of something like the school shootings from happening again.

Without guns, some acts may never occur or might substantially diminish the horrendous outcomes of them. Although, with guns, the exact same can be said. A gun is a tool, and with all tools, different domains and users determine their deeming morality.

A gun and it's many different forms are the products of what we might call technological progress. With that, one of the challenges I see is the different ways we define "progress" in general as a human species. Is it technological, biological, or ideological? Are those even separate?

The current state
The reality is the technology of guns is here, and will likely never go away regardless of their regulation. In that case, I ask, has our biological and ideological progress kept up with our technological progress? Can we, should we, will we be able to handle the presence of guns.

I don't think there is a 'right' solution, but I do know that we, as individuals, have a responsibility to give an effort to make our local communities/ecosystems better through our connections and actions. I particularly like Kwame Brown's ideas for action that he recently shared in his post, Friday in Sand Hook: My Thoughts.

Moving forward
One, of my many questions, is: at a fundamental level, is a gun necessary for life?  I would say this is, arguably, contextual. Guns are for destroying life, and/or protecting it... depending on how you view it.

How we've handled guns, and will handle guns (as with any tool, and all matters) moving forward is going to be dictated by our level of respect for life - all life, not just human life. Guns create major headlines, but there are also far deadlier killers and threats happening quietly all around us and inside of us (and this issue has similar argument sides as the gun control debate)... like I said, a respect for life.

The following video has circulated quite a bit in the past few years, and the focus has often been on the hunting method and humans ability to display great endurance... yet the part that breathes into my soul the most is from the 6:00 minute mark on - in the face of killing and death, the hunter knows the true purpose of killing, and takes great care to show his sincere empathy and respect for life, and his connection to it. He understands. He understands he's not 'above' or 'below' life, but embedded within it.