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A gun is not a talisman

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A gun is not a talisman

Unread postAuthor: jagerbond » Tue Dec 15, 2009 6:36 pm

I was lending my copy of Handgun Primer out to someone who thinks all guns are dangerous....

"Because the gun has become a symbol of power, a certain mystique has built up around it. There are two great myths about the firearm.

One is that the gun is an evil talisman that will turn kindly Dr. Jekyll into evil Mr. Hyde. This is the myth alluded to when people say, "You shouldn't have a gun in the house, because you or someone else is likely to murder a friend or relative in a fit of anger." To be sure, people given to homicidal rage should not have access to deadly weapons ... but the weapon itself does not change the personality of a normal, well-adjusted human being.

The opposite myth is that the gun is a good talisman that wards off evil. "I feel safe now that I've bought a gun," says the typical victim of this delusion. In fact, the gun is an inert piece of metal, a projectile launcher, a remote control drill -- nothing more and nothing less. It is properly used as a piece of safety-rescue equipment, but so functions only in competent hands, and it functions best in a systems approach to personal safety that includes locks, alarms, dogs, unarmed combat training, and above all, a practical and non-paranoid approach to safety awareness.

Like all the characteristic advances of mankind, such as the automobile, the gun is an instrument, a tool that extends the will of its human owner. Used properly, it is benevolent; used incompetently or with evil intent, it becomes a terrible engine of destruction. The gun has no personality, no soul, no magic. Only a fool fears the gun itself; the wise fear evil people and foolish ones who use guns to do hurt. Only a fool believes merely having a gun will keep him safe; wise men know that the defense handgun is merely a tool for protection of the innocent, a tool that can turn on its owner as savagely as a loosely gripped chain saw if handled by a person who does not know how to use it."

Written by
Massad Ayoob
Handgun Primer
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Unread postAuthor: McCoytheGreater » Tue Dec 15, 2009 8:13 pm

Couldn't agree with Mr. Ayoob more. Guns don't kill people. Idiots with guns kill people. I was taught at a young age (8) to respect firearms, not to fear them.
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Unread postAuthor: maverik94 » Tue Dec 15, 2009 8:48 pm

I agree also. Where I live, pretty much everyone (Including my family) owns at least one firearm. I think there has been only one homicide involving a gun in my county since I can remember. (Though sadly I knew someone who took his own life with a handgun).
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Unread postAuthor: kjjohn » Tue Dec 15, 2009 9:03 pm

I strongly agree. I definitely believe that a gun can be very dangerous if in the hands of an idiot or homicidal maniac, but can be as safe as other everyday objects when in the hands of an experienced, mentally stable person. Without guns, I would become a very depressed person :) Massad Ayoob sounds like a wise man.
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Unread postAuthor: ThegunGuy » Tue Dec 15, 2009 10:57 pm

I wrote an essay about guns and gun laws once. it basically said the same thing.

If the American politicians tried to ban guns we would have a civil war on our hands.(If anyone needs to rise up against their government for being oppressive call me)

By the way I'm getting a necklace that holds a .22 mini revolver and a matching belt buckle.

Edit: By the way homicidal maniacs are more likely to stab you or club you to death than to shoot you.
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Unread postAuthor: jook13 » Tue Dec 15, 2009 11:22 pm

In my small town in the middle of Arizona, guns are just a part of life.

I remember when I lived in the big city of Phoenix I would see a person with a pistol at their side once in a while. People seemed to be so nervous when they saw that. I was more wierded out by their reaction to seeing a gun than seeing a person with a gun.

My favorite quote is "If you outlaw guns, then only outlaws will have guns."
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Unread postAuthor: rcman50166 » Tue Dec 15, 2009 11:39 pm

ThegunGuy wrote:If the American politicians tried to ban guns we would have a civil war on our hands.(If anyone needs to rise up against their government for being oppressive call me)


I think you are looknig for revolutionary war. Civil war implies the people against the people, while a revolutionary war is the people vs the government. Also banning guns would be against the Constitution of the United States. There would have to be an amendment made which would never fly today. Too many citizens own guns.
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Unread postAuthor: jackssmirkingrevenge » Wed Dec 16, 2009 12:02 am

Can't argue with someone whose surname spelt backwards is Booya! :D
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Unread postAuthor: McCoytheGreater » Wed Dec 16, 2009 2:01 am

Which raises almost a whole new question. What should the interpretation of "Right to Bear Arms" be? Did it only apply to the time when the bill of rights was written? Does it mean our country has the right to go to war? Or does it mean eveyone can carry a gun if he or she wants. I think that it means everyone has the privileged of owning a gun.

Thoughts? Comments? Death threats? (direct all death threats to McCoytheLesser)
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Unread postAuthor: CpTn_lAw » Wed Dec 16, 2009 6:19 am

It is true however that possessing a firearm put -in the mind of the angry one- a new tool to realize whatever sick act he/she might do. But apart from a gun, many many things can be used as murder weapons, knives, frying pans, pliers, almost everything (well...certain things like TP do not apply) can be used to injure someone.
I absolutely reject such phrase as "respect a firearm". I would replace it by, "know yourself". You don't respect a screwdriver, yet you do not fear it. You don't respect a hacksaw, yet you don't fear it. When you know what you're capable of, when you know where there's danger or risk, that is when you have to be SAFE.
The fact guns are so feared I think comes from many reasons. It's unpersonal, you don't touch the person.
Stupid people should not be allowed to have guns. That is something I think is true, now it would be totaly impossible to make tests to categorize people in that way. Look just at how homosexuality is still not accepted by so many people? Imagine now categorizing people as "not allowed to handle firearm device" for low intelligence profile?? Come on, that will never happen. Stupid people, irresponsible people, sick people,maniac people will always have guns. We can't change it.
On the other hand what we can do, is make sure that we do not fall in that category, that we safely use whatever POTENTIALLY dangerous item we use, and that we teach people around us how to be safe.


Now i gotta go to uni.
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Unread postAuthor: kenbo0422 » Wed Dec 16, 2009 7:05 am

The gun is a tool. Without guns, our armies would be fighting with swords and spears again. If guns were never invented, our swords would be the concern of governments. It happened in Scotland, and quite a few other places in the past.

But, as the wise man said, the weapon isn't to be feared, it is the wielder. When a mind is deranged enough to commit acts that even make me gasp (I've been in some REALLY nasty situations), then that fear of the unknown is what makes it even more intense.

We were taught to use our weapons like an expert, and we did. What always befuddled the enemy was that they never expected to have to look out for what wasn't considered a weapon.

The point is: Outlawing any kind of weapon won't take away the weapons. The mindset of the protected masses is that the power in those weapons are too dangerous to control, so they must be eliminated. Then what? Spud pikes? :D
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Unread postAuthor: psycix » Wed Dec 16, 2009 7:45 am

Nice piece of text, its all true!
Guns don't kill, people do. If someone wants to kill, a gun can be used, but a car, kitchen knife or baseball bat are also viable options. Thus, the lack of a gun will not stop a murderer.
While in the hands of a normal person, a car, knife, baseball bat or gun will be used as a recreational device. (Racing, cooking, baseball, target shooting)

jackssmirkingrevenge wrote:Can't argue with someone whose surname spelt backwards is Booya! :D

:lol: Nice one!
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Unread postAuthor: Brian the brain » Wed Dec 16, 2009 4:09 pm

I must parrot by saying I agree with the first text.

However..there is a difference between a car and a gun. :roll:

The first is a means of transportation, the second, being a weapon, was invented with the sole purpose of ending someone's life with it.Or some animals life ofcourse.

Clear and simple.

This is what scares some people.
It raises the question: why would my neighbour ( or anyone else) need one?Why did he buy it? :shock:

A question that would not be on anyone's mind if it was a car he bought.
(Well, apart from environmental issues.) :wink:

Not all people understand you can have fun with a gun.
And correct me if I'm wrong, but aren't the deadliest firearms most appealing?
Even to those ( 99%) who do not intend to use it for evil.
There will always be this duality to it.
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Unread postAuthor: psycix » Wed Dec 16, 2009 4:18 pm

The first is a means of transportation, the second, being a weapon, was invented with the sole purpose of ending someone's life with it.Or some animals life ofcourse.

Then explain spudguns. Designed to have fun. Taking people's lives is the least thing a spud gun is supposed to do.
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Unread postAuthor: ramses » Wed Dec 16, 2009 4:22 pm

rcman50166 wrote:
ThegunGuy wrote:If the American politicians tried to ban guns we would have a civil war on our hands.(If anyone needs to rise up against their government for being oppressive call me)


I think you are looknig for revolutionary war. Civil war implies the people against the people, while a revolutionary war is the people vs the government. Also banning guns would be against the Constitution of the United States. There would have to be an amendment made which would never fly today. Too many citizens own guns.


I doubt it, considering how various handgun bans, "assault weapon" bans, etc. have gotten through.

As to the interpretation of the 2nd amendment, when it was written, muzzle loaders and revolvers were allowed. They were also the weapons the military used. This meant that the people could fight a reasonable war with the government at any time. I am all for widespread availability of "assault weapons", if not actual assault rifles, maybe even a license for 203's, etc. The idea was to make the government fear the people to some extent, and I doubt the military will fear a bunch of people with only semi auto weapons, whereas they have access to the AC130's, Reapers, etc. And the fact that they monitor all communication. The thought of a revolution is laughable!

That sounds a little radical, I know, and if criminals had 203's we would be seriously screwed.

All that said, I would rather be shot to death than beaten with a baseball bat. And the nonviolent purpose for a gun would be a remote drill. Even look at Remington nailers!
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