[Marxism] Forwarded post on gun control

Louis Proyect lnp3 at panix.com
Sun Dec 10 06:47:08 MST 2006


From: "mo" <<mailto:leoneill at optonline.net>leoneill at optonline.net>
To: <<mailto:marxism at lists.econ.utah.edu>marxism at lists.econ.utah.edu>
Sent: Saturday, December 09, 2006 4:03 AM
Subject: Gun control, justice & meat

No wonder liberals have such a bad rap when they are so casually dismissive
of something that is really quite necessary for a lot of people living on
the raggedy edge, and is a pleasuable pasttime to boot."

"Hunting as a sport should also be taken seriously. Of course we were always
taught as children not to kill what you wouldn't eat, but I would say that
our family primarily used hunting as a recreational activity. I don't see
this as significantly less important than using it as a source of food or
income; people need to be entertained somehow"

"I've actually met very few in my 30 years of working for  a living where
someone *doesn't* own a firearm of some sort, and this includes some 
white-collar clerical
jobs as well. To a large degree this is an expression of the fear and 
alienation
that is almost total across the working class today. Feelings of
atomization, alienation, isolation from neighbors, etc. It's all part 
of this formula."

"Gun control is a liberal's wet dream."

I diagree with the 3 writers quoted. I strongly feels we--all of us--need to
fight for sane, strict gun control. Of all the industrialized and
transitional nations, only America has refused to face the need for
regulation of gun & amno ownership, their sale, storage, use and distribution.
As someone who lives in a rural area, grew up hunting, I am very familiar
with all the glorifications of guns, listing tradition, legacy, manly
comraderie, father-son bonding and most speciously food gathering. I do not
doubt that the thrill of the kill is fun..I grant you that stalking, braving
the elements, its conducive fantasy of power, its illicit savagrey (drinking
still warm blood,) the lively skill of eye-finger-balance coordination, in
short its sport as entertainment.is not without its fans. But guns are not
just inanimate amalgam of steel, (guns don't kill) but machines expressly
made to deliver efficient. lethality. The fact is that hunting has fallen
so precipitiously in popular participation that the gun manufactureres, gun
merchants and gun owner organizations are sponsoring all kinds of contests
with neat give-aways, ipods etc to recruit kids to take up hunting and
target shooting. They spend a great deal of money on proslyestizing shooting
as a sport and are trying to reintroduce it in the schools (Columbine didn't
help,) because they see the handwriting on the wall.

Where I live everybody, well most male ones, used to hunt, just 30 years ago
most every truck was decorated with rifles across the rear window. Now few
still hunt and when they do kill game they invariably give the meat away to
food pantries or friends, neighbors. Hunting is very expensive. Not just the
guns, but the ammo, the license, the safety classes, the LL Bean
camoulflogue outfits, the thermal underclothing, heavy duty boots, rope,
tags & all the outdoor equipement, Beef, chicken, turkey, lamb, pork, even
bison is cheap. It doesn't take hours of messy, bloody work to throw a hot
dog or steak on the barby. It is also a very expensive sport and gun club
membership is not cheap..My brother hunts, but his kids refuse to, nor will
they eat venison. These all are the least important reasons we need to
strictly control guns. I think people should be able to hunt and target
practice. Canada has greater percentage of hunters than in America, as does
Norway, Sweden and several other countries. Yet they all have very stringent
gun control laws. Gun control does not interfere with hunting or sports
shooting.

The gun manufacturers have gotten laws passed to remove them from liability
from product injury through their political affiliation with right wing
groups.from the NRA to the fundies to the wako survivalists defending their
homestead from black heliocopters..Why it is necessary to control guns is
their overwhelming disruption of society and the large costs resulting from
serious, crippling injury and death. The injury from guns is not just
physical, but social and economical, inflicting fear and diminishing
commerce and hindering communities from organizing effectively. The record
of guns throughout the US. and in other countries is a disgrace.adding
to the misery of the poor and working class in neighborhoods without
adequate law services and resources. Criminal gun manufacturers and
merchants have supplied illegal guns, smuggled into to all the cities large
and small in the U.S. Central America and the Carribean with the government
turning a blind eye just as do with cigarette smuggling to Canada and Europe..
Guns have hard won their baneful reputation and distaste from the 
American people.

It is nonsense to believe Republicans win elections because liberals favor
sane laws enforcing gun safety, protection from injury and violence
reduction. Guns provoke violence, fear and danger that has been successfully
preyed upon as standard Republican mantra of law and order to divide working
people, exacerbating racial, gender and class divisions. Even a sizeable
portion of NRA members favor stricter gun control. No, Repubs win because
they are practiced at cheating, lying and stealing & connerie. But it is
sheer insanity to argue like gun manufacturers who put up large amounts of
money to state legislators (where most gun laws are passed) that any citizen
should be allowed to own and use 50-caliber rifles, of very high velocity
that were  issued by the military specifically for shooting down 
aircraft. Remember
the gun manufacturers argued strenuously all the way to the supreme court
that citizens should be able to buy their machine guns when a decision was
made in the 1930s to uphold the federal laws banning them.

In fact, guns offer scant self-defense and it is most often delusional to
believe one would necessarily have a loaded, cocked gun available during a
break-in or mugging or assault. In fact guns are more often used against
people living in the same residence than used against criminal strangers or
intruders. Guns do kill people and so do bullets and so do people who
properly use them. Our nation could pass laws that would supervise the
manufacture of guns all along the food chain to stop illegal gun running
and small arms smuggling all around the world.

Lagre numbers of guns are stolen each year because of lax or non-existant
enforcement or ineffiective laws assuring proper storage. Stolen guns loom
large in communities all across the nations. In several nations guns must be
stored at the local police station when not in use for hunting or sports
shooting, they are signed out and signed in. To protect children from scalding
injuries, manufacturers of office water coolers have more governmental
regulatory control over their design and manufacture than do guns.  Yet
thousands of children are shot and killed each year from playing with guns
not properly stored or used in anger against a family member, stranger,
friend or themselves.

It is an abdication of logic, of responsibility, and the denial of all
evidence to not fight for strict gun control. I know I will not convince the
gun advocates of my view and I do not want to enter into the very
complicated linguistic, historical and legal discussion of the
Constitutionality of the right of a well regulated militia to bear arms.

It is not surprising to see the quote about a liberal's wet dream in a
discussion of guns as many believe old lore of their sexual powers
conferred.Power is a mighty aphrodisiac Sexual attributes.are embedded
by language, literature, the iconography of art. After a pistol 
shoots its wad,
it is hot and hard indeed, but its sexual effervesence seldom brings healing,
build community or reduce injury and death or reduce the enormous
costs of not regulating them more stictly. China, Russia, Cuba have
had strict gun control laws since their revolutions. Unless you argue
for anarchism, it is folly to believe that the ubiquity of readily available
guns are anything but harmful to all societies, it is folly to believe that
readily available guns will forward revolutionary change against capitalist
reaction. --mo






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