Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Google-ize Airbender Guns

Random Thoughts
I really hope that "Google-ize" doesn't actually become a word because torturing a proper noun so it can be used as a verb like this makes me want to vomit.

I'm not narcissistic enough to be an atheist.

Fast food fried chicken is the sarcophagus inside the food pyramid. Tasty, but made of death.

The Last Airbender's Soup Catcher
I love Avatar: The Last Airbender, (the original animated series, not the live action abomination by M. Knight Shyamalan) but...Aang grew up and grew a douchey looking chin strap. That's not right. You'd think Katara would have had something to say about that. Maybe she compromised. He could keep the beard if he shaved...somewhere else. On second thought I'd rather not think about it.

Don't take my guns, bro! 
Recently a friend posted this image on facebook:

At first I read his comment as "I wish I understood this more," which I liked right away before I reread his comment and realized that he was actually saying, "I wish more understood this." After thinking about it for a little while I did something I almost never do in general, and have never done on a friend's post; I "unliked" his update. My views on our right to bear arms and gun control are complicated, and sometimes I don't fully understand them myself.

On one hand, a man much smarter than me once said, "An armed society is a polite society. Manners are good when one may have to back up his acts with his life." There's something to that, and I genuinely believe that people should be allowed to defend themselves.

On the other hand, if everyone is wandering around armed they might be more inclined to engage in vigilante justice. There was an example of just this kind of shenanigan in the news recently when an armed neighborhood watch captain (seriously, what kind of neighborhood watch has freaking guns), shot and killed  an unarmed seventeen-year-old high-school student.

Are guns necessarily bad or evil? No. Guns are a tool, like a hammer or a screwdriver. They are arguably more dangerous than a hammer or a screwdriver, but guns are fundamentally just another kind of tool. Is our right to bear arms important? Yes. Does it make me feel safer? Hell no.

Look at it this way: Anyone who opts for a career that will require them to carry a gun professionally, whether military, law enforcement, or even personal security, undergoes hours and hours of training before they are full qualified to do so.  Now, of the people who will buy weapons this year, how many will take even a basic gun safety class? Never mind taking home defense classes that just might mean someone not shooting their daughter's boyfriend when he sneaks into the house at midnight. Can anyone really trust their safety and the protection of their rights to the guy down the street who bought a gun just to exercise his second amendment rights?

I'm not against more people owning guns, and I'm not even really against people carrying them publicly. That said, there needs to be some measure of accountability for owning and carrying something as potentially lethal as a gun.

I would feel better if I knew the gun owners in my neighborhood had completed a gun safety course, had spent some predetermined number of hours at a range, and some kind of course in defensive shooting before they were even allowed to bring the gun home. I would feel better about the gun owners in my neighborhood carrying weapons publicly if I knew they had met even more rigorous standards before being issued a permit to carry. Last, I would feel better about people owning guns and carrying them publicly if there were very, very serious consequences for harming another person with a gun.

Our right to bear arms is an important part of the freedoms we enjoy, but the responsibility that comes with it must be taken very seriously.

1 comment:

  1. "I suppose it is tempting, if the only tool you have is a hammer, to treat everything as if it were a nail." -Abraham Maslow.