I guess I’m not over this yet. I am NOT going to immerse myself in gun control or the gun culture, but this has been playing more and more on my mind as I’ve looked further into the issue. So I’ve still got one or two things to get out of my system. This one’s more about Australia than the US.
Quite a few people have offered the “why don’t they ban cars?” line in the gun control debate. Cars have been used as lethal weapons in some instances with courts deciding that the intent to kill was indeed deliberate. It’s quite a small number of cases compared to gun deaths, but it happens.
However, I think the car argument is a diversion in the debate on gun control. Pro-gun people seem to want to talk about one of these two issues only if you talk about the other as well, as if they’re inextricably linked. They’re not. They CAN and should be debated separately as one has nothing to do with the other.
People do use cars the wrong way, though. Here’s an Australian example shown on one of our current affairs TV shows late last year. The following video is truly scary stuff. The video goes for just over 8 minutes and I’d urge you to watch it all.
Pro-gun people in Australia would like to see freer access to firearms. Some would like to see access to semi-automatic weapons and/or concealed carry laws introduced.
Sooooooooo, imagine the guy in the black ute with a gun. In fact, imagine both of these guys carrying guns.
How do you think this would have ended?
Road rage is a serious problem in Australia but personally speaking, I’d prefer that authorities crack down on drivers rather than permit everyone to carry firearms. Pro-gun types will argue that Mr Black Ute might think twice about his actions if he knows there’s a chance the other guy is armed. But if that’s the case, we have to assume Mr Black Ute is armed as well. Even if both these guys had weapons, my educated guess from seeing both men on the screen is that Mr Black Ute is going to act first and he’s not going to be backward about doing so.
And how would you like to be one of the motorists surrounding these guys? It was already bad enough for other motorists as the situation unfolded without firearms. What if you add some flying bullets into the mix? One of the things that gets missed in the gun debate here in Australia is the right that people who aren’t into guns have to the quiet enjoyment of their lives without the threat of people around them being armed. Paranoia about (fire)armed self-defence is one of the achilles heels when it comes to this issue and it’s one thing we’re (thankfully) free from to a large degree here in Australia.
Personally, I’m glad Australia is the way it is, with guns under a relative level of control. I’m glad they’re generally not carried unless they’re about to be used for a legitimate purpose. I don’t want people to feel as if they have to carry a gun because everyone else is, and I don’t want people like the guy in the silver ute facing the barrel of a gun if someone like Mr Black Ute goes off his rocker.
And yes, of course this bloke should be charged and taken off the road. It’s common sense. Throw the book at him. What he did was stupid beyond comprehension, but can you honestly say he deserved to die for it?
Keep your comments civil, please. Pay heed to the comments policy because it will be exercised without regard for which side of the debate you’re on. Warning first, then expulsion. This is intended to be an informed discussion, not a slanging match.