11 March 2011

Emissaries of Despair

Here's the thing.

A gun is regressive. And belief that guns are essential and offer you recourse to real protection is erroneous.

I will not convince you of this.

A gun is a tool of death and as such stands against hope which I believe is what "progress" (as defined as "betterment") represents.

A common defense: guns don't kill people, people kill people. This is specious of course and has no real meaning as it is simply a reduction that admits of ALL killing tools.

We forgo the particular in this kind of reasoning.

I can easily argue that all guns are tools of death (I believe that is a true fact but I'd entertain dissent); as a consequence I conclude that all guns are detrimental as they have no other attribute. I will not argue that guns are evil as that requires agency. Guns are a tool that creates opportunities to manifest what is detrimental to human being.

I cannot easily or readily argue against all use of violent force or coercion. I do believe there is, if not a "right", at the very least a natural propensity to defend one's life. Fight or flight--either can be a form of defense.

Now, it's about here that folks go off the rails. We begin to create scenarios and situations where tools of death make us safe against others who mean us harm. We then pit tool against tool in order to create a kind of balance of death expectancy.

To me this is only a kind of gamble. Two guns of the like-make and operating efficiency may be equal in their death capacity; but we must still contend with human facing human. There is never a "same" in this equation.

So, we are back to you and I meeting as beings in the world and bringing our perceptions, knowledge and understanding to bear.

But I think the logical extension to matching weapon for weapon is that we have to believe that humans are always in a state of expectancy that amounts to "kill or be killed".

If you ultimately believe that humanity reduces down to that then you cannot readily argue against any action and cannot create any kind of ethic or morality that works against the ultimate belief--otherwise your beliefs are always, at their core, in conflict.

Kill or be killed gives us our degraded state. If this is this is your belief then there absolutely is no exalted state; there is no divine spark inherent in a maker's creation. Unless that spark shines out in order to kill--to be the last man standing.

I don't think most of us want to believe this and yet this is what we enact it daily when we use guns and buy guns and carry guns; We carry our potential destruction. We hold death-expectancy in our hands.

I take a similar view of the organized religions of which I have more than a passing knowledge. It is always kill or be killed, assimilate or die, masked as our God loves you, believe and be saved from eternal damnation ("the unknown" or "undiscovered country").

This kind of thinking comes out of a desire for Power over others...Power is AGAINST everything. Power is Fear of Everything.

There is no hope in Power and there is no hope in its emissaries or their tools.


  1. I think in identifying a general "kill or be killed" mentality you have identified the true draw to the gun. Guns make killing easy and detached. We further perpetuate guns as toys by creating video games that allow us to shoot up people/places with no consequence, giving our young people toy guns to play with. We don't want their to be any consequences. But furthermore, if you play with guns you can imagine yourself shooting, and you can detach yourself from the reality of killing. The more I think about it, the more inane it seems to breed a culture of plastic gun toting toddlers.

  2. Truly...it is a further amazement to me that those who claim the right to use the gun do not wish to alter the elements of culture perpetuated by this kind of thinking. Toys and guns; games and guns; play as war and war as play.

    The society we live in is detached from nearly all of our organic processes. All things/ideas/actions function as abstractions until they can be pursued in criminal court or until they bloody your own stoop.

    Even people are abstractions.

    Perhaps the gun is now the only way that people feel their lives are concrete.

  3. I don't disagree, but at the same time it's hard to conceive of the idea as guns as a symbol of concreteness, as I have never had a thought about a gun, owning a gun, needing a gun. It's just such a bizarre and foreign concept to me.

    I think we struggle to understand our relationship with guns because they became embedded in our culture from its onset. Obviously the context of guns in America has changed and is no longer applicable. Like technology, or maybe as a basic, original technology, our founding fathers had no idea what the implications of introducing gun ownership as a "freedom" would be to American 250 years later.

  4. I don't have a relationship to guns. When I was about 12 or 13 I should a bb gun that was a hand gun--that sucker was heavy. I didn't ever do it again. I don't remember liking or hating it...I just didn't ever give it another thought. I didn't go home and ask my dad for one for xmas or my birthday.

  5. By "our" relationships with guns I meant America's relationship, not you or I.

  6. I know, I was just qualifying myself as a commentator on guns. A gun is an idea to me. A bad one.