Guns are more important than people in America. There’s no “here” here. Nobody is going to go first, and just do what is right for the country.
During the Civil War, when soldiers — who were not professional soldiers, but conscripts or volunteers who came to the battlefield as members of a state militia — when soldiers would step up to the skirmish line, they knew that the first row of soldiers to advance would almost certainly be killed in short order. They just did it. It’s impossible to overemphasize the courage of the Civil War soldier, North or South.
That kind of courage no longer exists in America, except for the isolated individual, here and there. And, especially, it doesn’t exist among gun owners. Those guys in France, who disarmed the nut ball. In America, the American gun owner would have said, “I wish I had my pistol,” and sat silent. Those guys gave a lesson that went unlearned: what is needed to maintain order without firearms is courage. The modern American gets courage from a gun, the way the coward in a Hollywood movie gets it from a bottle. So weakened has become the American citizen’s fortitude, that he needs to take his gun with him to buy a burger at Burger King.
Less than 30% of homicides are committed by strangers to the victims. 30%. Three out of four people murdered in America, will be murdered through violence by someone they know.
Of violent crimes committed by strangers to the victim, less than 10% involve the use of a firearm. The violent criminal with a gun is a scary monster with psychological impact, but no empirical validity. The person in possession of a firearm is more likely to use it against family or friend, or himself, than to use it in commission of a crime or in defence against a crime.
If gun owners decided to support background checks, regulation of the size of magazine clips, creation of a database to track gun sales, requirements for safe storage and transport, licensing for gun ownership, and insurance requirements, could we reduce the amount of homicides by firearm? Damn right, we could.
It’s not going to happen. The wife shot by her estranged husband, the bloody corpses of little children strewn about a school, the moviegoers lying in pools of their own blood, the neighbor girl shot in the head by the toddler who found Daddy’s gun under his pillow, — those deaths are the price gun owners are willing to pay, the suffering gun owners are willing to inflict on others, to maintain their right to keep and bear arms.