Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Why do Americans Need Guns?

Americans have a long history of gun ownership. The founding fathers built the right into our constitution in the 2nd amendment.
A well regulated militia, being necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms, shall not be infringed.
The U.S. constitution is not a set of "guidelines" made for the government to overstep when it feels like it. It doesn't say, except automatic weapons, or except only in their private residence, and it doesn't say except only with a permit. This is for a very particular reason; democracy only works if the government fears it's constituents. Does our government fear it's constituents?
http://www.dallenrose.com/?p=1022 <8/27/2013>
The police are becoming heavily militarized. Many of them think of themselves as soldiers instead of protectors of the public. The war on drugs causes the police viewing the public as their enemy rather than the people they serve to protect. At the minimum, individuals should be able to buy any weapon that a SWAT team can buy as a partial check against corrupt police. Here is a map of all of the SWAT team mishaps [2].

But what about all of the accidental gun deaths each year? Accidental gun deaths are the result of irresponsible people. But it's not the governments job to protect us from ourselves. I oppose all laws meant to protect me from myself. Why should I give up my liberty and rights because some idiot accidentally shoots themself?

There are three rules to guns that would solve all of the accidental shootings:
  1. Don't point a gun at anything you don't want to shoot. 
  2. Always treat a gun like it's loaded.
  3. Store your guns in a safe place where somebody who doesn't know the rules cannot access them.
In addition to protecting us from our own government, guns act as a deterrent for criminals.

Lets assume criminals are the only reason we need guns. If you really dig into the ideology of anti-gun perspectives and pro-gun perspectives, the argument has elements of idealist vs. realist. An idealist would ask:

Would less people shoot each other if there were no guns?
Yes. If there were no guns, it would no longer be possible to shoot somebody. We should remove guns from society. If we start banning guns, we will be moving in the right direction as a society.
A realist would say:
Yes, but we can't take guns away from everybody and we can't keep them off of the black market. So the best thing we can do is empower responsible people to protect themselves from criminals.
Believing in an ideal society is an admirable goal, but an ideal society is realistically impossible. There will always be corruption in a power hungry government, and there will always be criminals with guns. We need to make the best decisions given our practical limitations.

Do you want to control your own safety, or do you want to rely on 911 to keep you safe?
Calling 911 when there is an intruder is not the best option. If somebody is breaking into your house, you may only have 30 seconds to act, and I believe you have the right to defend your property from an intruder. Calling 911 and talking out loud to somebody on the phone will give away any tactical advantage you might have against an intruder. Also, the police won't get there for at least 5-10 minutes. At that point, you and your family could be dead. Intruders should be shot on sight.

How many robberies do you think there would be if everybody had a gun for home defense?
Actually, we can answer that question by comparing the United States, to Switzerland. In Switzerland, every male is given an assault rifle for their military service. Switzerland has a robbery rate of 36 per 100,000 people, while the United States has a robbery rate of 234/100,000. The U.S. has 650% higher robbery rate than Switzerland. [1]

Americans need guns for two main reasons; to defend themselves from criminals, and to defend themselves against tyrannical government.

[1] Source: http://www.stephenhalbrook.com/articles/guns-crime-swiss.html <Accessed 8/27/2013>
[2] Source: http://www.cato.org/raidmap <Accessed 8/27/2013>