Thursday, June 12, 2014

Something You May Not Be Able To Solve...

Someone I know asked about guns "What do you think the solutions might be"...

Well, depending on how you define the 'problem' I am not sure there is a solution..

In order to try and even have a conversation (the exchange of ideas, viewpoints and suggestions arriving at a compromise vs just pontificating) that results in limits to gun ownership something would need to happen that to be blunt I don't think can happen...

The people who would never own a gun and would never have a desire to own a gun need to convince those who own guns that they fundamentally have no desire to take their guns away.  Without that there is not going to be any sort of true conversation. Because lots of gun owners feel that the end state folks want is for them not to have guns.

According to Pew about 37% of Americans say they or someone in their household owns a gun.

But wait, that's less than 50% so the folks who don't have a gun in the house are the majority so they should be able to influence the  political process no matter what the 37% wants.. Well the reality is that you don't need a majority in order to defend or even promote a position if you are well organized, the defenders of a right, law or program used by a large number of people are almost always more successful in keeping that right, law or program than those seeking to change it (without court intervention).  This isn't unique to guns by any stretch.

But when it is considered by most who utilize it as a right, then it becomes that much harder to change. If you consider it a right or a wrong interpretation of the 2nd amendment is irrelevant. Because people feel it is a right, the courts have generally said it is a right and the courts have generally looked askance at all sorts of restrictions for quite some time.  Once someone is basically told something is a right and is convinced it is a right it is that much harder to modify later.

Also gun ownership tends to be regional, there are about 4.9 million people in Indiana over the age of 18, over 1.4 million of those folks have a handgun license. Restricting anything that almost 30% of voters in any unit of government are willing to go to the trouble of getting a license to do is a challenge pure and simple.

Convincing any group that limits on all of them (even if those limits would never apply to them personally) to protect people from a statistically very small number of that group is a challenge. You figure that out, there are all sorts of  'problems' you can fix.

The thing is however, I am not sure that is possible.

That all being said, better mental health options, treatment and insurance can only be a net positive on a whole host of issues in our society...

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