GUNS:RE: Self Defense

From: John Calvin (
Date: Sat Jan 20 2001 - 16:33:53 MST

>Alas, I am just an outsider trying to figure out why your attitude is the
>way it is. America's apparent romance with guns is really very poorly
>understood around here, and I think I am now able to understand it somewhat
I think that the first step to understanding is realizing that it is not "Americas" Romance with guns. We are a very diverse people. I have noted in many arguments, (of which I will refer to yours specifically in this post)a gross stereotyping of the various sides. Anecdotaly, the vast majority of people I know do not own guns. Of the individuals I do know who legally own guns of any kind I would not characterize a single one of them as a "Lunatic". Notice that on a mail-list with a large number of people only a small few respond to your posts who are "Pro-Gun", and even they constitute a range of opinions rather than a single POV.

so, in the interest of clearing up some misconceptions.

"America" does not have a love affair with guns.

Not every American is a Gun toting Lunatic, a sizable majority of american citizens do not own handguns at all.

Those who do own and carry handguns, are not all paranoid loons just looking for someone to shoot. Many of us who do enjoy shooting have never seen a gun fired outside of a practice range.

Civilians with guns are not always dangerously untrained in the use of weapons. I know several police officers and have learned from them that many of my friends who are handgun enthusiasts are better trained in the use of a firearm than many officers of the law.

Bands of armed criminals do not roam every street in the cities of America. While there are admittedly areas of several cities where crime is rampant, the media in general has done an injustice to the US in characterizing our cities as constantly existing on the edge of anarchy. In 31 years living in the US I have only heard gunfire on the streets of any city I have been in on 3 occasions, and I have always lived in large cities.

and one final personal (and emotionally based)opinioned, I find nothing morally justified in preventing a lawful citizen from defending themselves against an unlawful attacker. Firearms are a very efficient mode of defense.

I once saw Barbara Wlaters interview a death row inmate(sorry don't remember who). She asked him what he thought would happen if somehow ALL of the guns could be made to somehow dissappear. He laughed and said that would be great "'cause then he and a couple of friends could go into your house armed with baseball bats and make whatever we wanted you to."

John Calvin

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