Eight people have thus far died as a result of American’s latest mass shooting, which occurred at a Fed Ex facility in Indiana last night. Prior to Covid, America averaged one mass shooting per day.* Why is it that millions of Americans (nearly all of them Republicans) appear to value owning firearms over ending the violence? These are their arguments:
1) The Second Amendment to the Constitution guarantees the right of every adult American to own and carry guns: 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. (This amendment predates the existence of a standing army.)
2) Gun violence is the price one pays for living in a free society.
3) Guns don’t kill people; people kill people.
4) In the absence of guns, we would be unable to protect ourselves, our families, and others who are in danger.
5) If the government took away our guns, killers would use other lethal methods, and no one would have a gun with which to stop them.
6) Democrats are, in reality, power-mad Communists, who want to take away our guns in order to: (a) Institute a Communist-style dictatorship; (b) Force God-fearing Republicans into labor camps; (c) Raise our children in indoctrination camps.
7) Americans are God’s Chosen people, but He will only help us to the extent that we are willing to help ourselves. He has given us guns with which to do this.
8) The reason that America has the world’s highest rate of gun violence (outside of actual war zones) is that we own too few guns. If every last adult American was armed, violent crime would be exceedingly rare. As the National Rife Association puts it: The only answer to a bad guy with a gun is a good guy with a gun.
9) Every adult is morally obligated to own at least one gun and to know how to use it. States, counties, and municipalities should have the freedom to make gun ownership and training mandatory.
* A mass shooting is an incident in which four or more people are shot, not including the shooter.