Transcending the LawSteven Lieberman
Transcending the Law
“I left my gun alone and unattended for an entire day, and not once did it go out on it’s own and shoot someone.”
That was a humorous tag line from an internet meme a while back that was designed to show the logical failings of anti-gun legislation that imposes restrictions on weapons, largely based on cosmetic features.
This came to mind the other day as Sandy and I were having breakfast and discussing the disparity between the events in Dallas and Louisiana, and the open carry activists that were parading near the Republican Convention in Ohio.
I mentioned to Sandy that I had heard the Rev. Jesse Jackson being interviewed on Fox News in preparation for the Democratic Convention. Harris Faulkner had asked him something regarding the turmoil regarding the DNC and their email scandal. He had responded that it was a distraction that took peoples mind away from the issues of racism, inequality, and easy access to weapons of war.
She pressured him about the whole “weapons of war” thing.. and he stated that the tragedies that occurred in Dallas and Louisiana were both open carry states. (Somehow “open carry” and “weapons of war” are logically connected.)
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She stopped him and pointed out that Ohio is also an open carry state, and that in Ohio there were no incidents of violence.
He quickly changed the subject.
Sandy sipped her coffee and mused that a sense of entitlement causes certain people to behave a certain way. Deny them what they feel is there due and they become agitated. Any population will have a percentage that is psychopathic…why would the entitlement population be any different? While most of this group will scream and yell, a small percentage will engage in violence.
This makes sense on a certain level. But entitlement is a broad category. There are those that by virtue of their age feel they are entitled to certain societal benefits. Others, that have labored for years at a particular endeavor feel they are entitled to the fruits of that labor. Yet, historically the incidents of violence are limited around the entitlement class.
I responded that I felt the most dangerous threat was not so much the entitlement class, nor the prevalence of weapons. (The latter being one of the more asinine concepts. Firearms have been around for only about 500 years. We as a species have been killing each other, often en masse, for thousands. Blaming a gun for the death of an innocent would be like blaming a baseball for a broken window.) Instead, I suggested the most dangerous threat to our current world was “self supremacy”.
The peace of Ohio was virtually guaranteed, since the activists that open carry operate within a framework that all agree too and is inclusive. The tragedy of Dallas and Louisiana were also foreseeable, because in both instances the killers operated as agents of a supreme power that was under assault from an illegitimate civil authority. The same would go for the killers in Germany, France, and Orlando.
If the State of California were to arrest a Federal Officer going about his official US sanctioned business the outrage of the officer, as well as the Federal Government itself would be palpable. Our civil society is predicated on the acceptance of Federal Supremacy. The officer, has an established entitled expectation of respect and support from his colleges at the State level. When this is breeched a pathway opens towards violence.
The extremists of the world feel that their empowerment comes from a power greater than the government, greater then the innocent people that ultimately become their victims. Be it Allah, God, Gaia, Mother Nature, or the “Pastafarian” Spaghetti Monster… their empowerment, and their expectations of compliance… (read: entitlement) drive them towards their violent acts.
The Reverend Jesse Jackson would have far preferred the simple answer that that the access to guns, and the right of the people of open carry were the causes of extreme crime.
It is hard to explain that the the problem lies not with the tool, but rather with the people. People that feel empowered by their perceived superiority, and transcendent of laws.
Sandy agreed and likened it to a school yard game.
Children develop complex social rules when it comes to school yard games. When the bully attempts to disrupt the game the children do not try and constrain him to the rules of the contest and the established penalties for fault. The bully does not feel that the rules apply to him. He is not interested in participating in the game. He wishes to disrupt it.
Why would the bully that wishes to break up the school yard game spend anytime at all worried that his chances of winning the game are now in jeopardy because of his actions?
Likewise, why would a law preventing the use or ownership of a firearm have any effect on the behavior of an individual that feels that they are empowered by an authority superior to that of society?