Re: Guns [was Re: property Rights]

Ian (
Fri, 28 May 1999 01:48:43 +0100

>1) What possible extropian/ transhumanist merit can this pointless slanging
>match have?

What's the point of living forever if you live in a totalitarian state? It seems that we do not want merely a higher QUANTITY of life at any cost, but a higher QUALITY of life as well, no?

>2) Have you pro gun activists got any idea how completley mad you sound to
>non Americans?

Have you any idea how deranged you sound to non-Americans like me? You definitely do NOT speak for us "non-Americans" (now there's a group without common opinions if ever I heard of one). If it hadn't been for the example of freedom which America once represented, democracy would have taken a hell lot longer to achieve here in Europe (and don't give me the french for chrissakes).

>but just because something is written in your
>precious constitution or your bill of rights does not mean that it is the be
>all and end all, that it is simply the only thought worth entertaining and
>no alternatives shall be brooked.

The U. S. A. is flawed as a country, but its constitution (if only it were respected) is a far better basis for a country than any other I know of. Perhaps you know of a country with a better constitution than the American?

>Times change, and laws must
>change with them. To advocate extropian beliefs on the one hand, and
>dogmatic adherence to a quite clearly imperfect constitution on the other
>hand seems somewhat at odds to me. But excuse me if I am stepping on your
>constitutionally protected toes here, I mean no harm, I'm just curious as to
>how you can rationalize this.

Exactly what parts of the constitution do you think we should discard as being outdated? The freedom of speech? The right of people to assemble peacefully? The freedom of religion? The right, when accused of a crime, to be informed of the nature and the cause of the accusation, the right to a speedy and public trial? The right to be secure against unreasonable searches and seizures? (which is not respected by federal law enforcement agencies)

The constitution is not America's problem. The problem is that with every year America deviates more and more from the ideas and ideals set out in the constitution.

>As for the merit of this discussion on the list, is it something along the
>lines of:
>*I'm looking to the future, but I'll shoot you if you get in my way.
>Or maybe:
>*Well, shucks ma, the end times are a-comin', let's arm ourselves to the
>teeth and head for the hills.

Don't tell me that you have never heard of self-defence? Or perhaps you regard self-defence as morally reprehensible? It seems that self-defence doesn't really have anything to do with the constitution either. I'd be in favour of self-defence even if it were un-constitutional. It's a matter of ethics.

A concerned non-American (involuntary non gun owner. Give me liberty and I'll get me a 1911 in a jiffy. Obviously, I hope I would never have to use it against people, but to me it seems preferable to have a gun and never needing it, to needing a gun and not having it).