Gun Control or Heart Change…Which is Really Needed?

"Sin is the issue, and that’s why problems exist, including tragic shootings. We need to stop offering bandages and substitutes and address peripheral issues." - Parker Reardon

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Aaron Blumer's picture

EditorAdmin

I'm weary of hearing this kind of "either the gospel or social efforts" false choice. Take just a second to do a basic internal consistency check. Looking at abortion, we can accurately say "sin is the problem, not...[ fill in the blank]" therefore we need more gospel preaching, not laws and regulations. But we don't say that do we?

You could pick any number of other examples. Widespread vandalism in your town by gangs of idle youth roaming the streets at night? Sin is the problem, but we want curfew and anti-loitering laws. Innocent people killed by drunk drivers? Sin is the problem, but we want stiffer or more effectively enforced impaired driving laws. The either-or reasoning doesn't hold up.

Keep in mind also, that in the "gun control" debate what we're talking about mainly is more rigorous background checks, smaller ammo magazines, 'red flag' laws, and closing the 'gun show loophole.'

These are indeed bandaids, but when you have a disease, you treat both causes and symptoms, not one or the other. Bandages are not "substitutes" for cures. (As for 2nd Amendment, I think we obsoletized it long ago by (1) making the U.S. military the mightiest and most advanced in the world. Which was also necessary. But nobody with an AR15 (even an illegal full auto one) could stand against them for long, nor could a local militia. And if one takes the view that 2nd Amendment is actually only about armed self defense, then rejecting the regulations above on those grounds is equally weak. (2) By ceasing to be a virtuous society. We don't have an ethical center anymore and you can't hand highly efficient killing tools to just anybody.)

Views expressed are always my own and not my employer's, my church's, my family's, my neighbors', or my pets'. The house plants have authorized me to speak for them, however, and they always agree with me.

Jonathan Charles's picture

Even the heart of the regenerate person is able to sin.  Until glorified saints live in the New Heaven and New Earth in the presence of the Godhead, we need laws in this present world to restrain sin.

Consider what gun control has accomplished in Australia: https://youtu.be/-2Arc3c8Pc8

Our country has a unique relationship with guns.  Tens of millions of minds need to change before there will be the needed changes of laws.

Dave White's picture

Let's get rid of ALL the guns!

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Consider this ... we can't even account for the illegal aliens in the US

Biden says no one needs a 9mm ... this statement informs us that banning the AR is a 1st step.

dgszweda's picture

I think some people in the media and in other countries have no clue as to the culture in the US around guns.  I know a few people who have over 100 guns and 50,000 rounds of ammo.  This guy is a bit crazy though

https://youtu.be/x4l4EiFkHxk

 

Aaron Blumer's picture

EditorAdmin

Joe Rogan on Gun Control: ‘Only Criminals Are Gonna Have Them’

I've heard some relatively strong arguments for doing nothing to increase regulation of gun possession. I used to think the "only criminals..." argument was one of them. But I made the mistake of reflecting on that a little and it quickly crumbled. I'm the last person who would say "We should be like Europe" in general, but in specific cases of policy and outcomes, it's not like gun control hasn't been tried anywhwere. It has. There are certainly tradeoffs, and some of the stronger arguments are those focused on what a people loses in exchange for what it gains. But we should look honestly at what it gains. In UK nobody gun massacres elementary schools. More to the point, it isn't true that "only the criminals" have guns there. It's a nice simple bumper sticker sort of claim that seems to have a lot of punch of you don't think about it too much. But it's paper thin. In UK, the police have guns (well, some of them do).

Some realities to keep in mind: only a small percentage of the population are criminals; only a subset of those are violent criminals; and only a smaller subset of those are willing to kill people. It's unlikely that in the U.S. we'd ever reach a point where more criminals have guns than police have guns. But even if that ratio fails, "only criminals" is ridiculous claim. 

Views expressed are always my own and not my employer's, my church's, my family's, my neighbors', or my pets'. The house plants have authorized me to speak for them, however, and they always agree with me.

Larry's picture

Moderator

Looking at abortion, we can accurately say "sin is the problem, not...[ fill in the blank]" therefore we need more gospel preaching, not laws and regulations. But we don't say that do we?

Actually something very close to this was said very recently here at SI (which I admit was a bit of a shock to me, even after all these years of reading SI). It is a very common view among evangelicals that we should not overturn Roe and outlaw abortion because it won't work anyway but rather work to give options to these ladies.

dgszweda's picture

Don Johnson wrote:

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Category:Mass_shootings_in_the_United_Ki...

Well if we look at just the 2020's we have 30 mass shootings in the US (141 killed and 208 injured), and 1 in the UK (6 deaths and 1 injury).  The population of the UK is 67M, the population of the US is 330M.  So the US is about 5x the size of the UK.  The number killed is 24x the amount in the UK and the injured is 208x the amount in the UK.

While there are other mass shootings, the magnitude and quantity are uniquely a US attribute.  The vast majority of US school shootings are under the age of 18.  I do think we need to do a better job in the US in restricting weapons to those who commit these crimes.  The ease to get a weapon is a bit scary.  I totally think we can have common sense gun control that doesn't restrict a single type of weapon to a law abiding, low risk individual.

Larry's picture

Moderator

While there are other mass shootings, the magnitude and quantity are uniquely a US attribute. 

This is likely not true. The US appears to be lower than the global average: https://crimeresearch.org/2018/08/new-cprc-research-how-a-botched-study-...

56th per capita in shootings and 61st per capita in killings.

Some significant quotations:

By our count, the US makes up less than 1.43% of the mass public shooters, 2.11% of their murders, and 2.88% of their attacks. All these are much less than the US’s 4.6% share of the world population. Attacks in the US are not only less frequent than other countries, they are also much less deadly on average.

In fact, John Lott’s careful analysis of a very large data set – 437 – pages – shows that the proper number is about 2%, less than the U.S. share of world population. 

The US is, according to the GTD. responsible for less than one percent of all mass shootings (0.69 percent) since 1970. 

What is also missed is a story like happened last Wednesday, the day after Uvalde, when an armed citizen in WV shot and killed someone who had an AR 15 and was firing rounds into a crowd, preventing any deaths or injuries. Without that armed citizen, we are looking at another mass shooting while waiting for people with guns to come and help. It is similar to other stories.

In the end gun violence is a horrific tragedy. Nothing minimizes that. But we need to be clear about the data.

Larry's picture

Moderator

There have been 17 mass shootings in the US just in the week since Uvalde.

What the data behind this claim?

Ken S's picture

Larry wrote:

There have been 17 mass shootings in the US just in the week since Uvalde.

What the data behind this claim?

I think the number is based on the government standard for mass shootings being 4 or more victims in one place/incident. I just googled "mass shootings in US since Uvalde". Lots of info available, and it seems the long Memorial Day weekend was filled with shootings.

Newsweek

CBS

 

Bert Perry's picture

Mass shootings rightly get a lot of press, but the bulk of murders are actually due to the drug trade and gang activity.  (well, those not involving abortion, that is)  

How to fix that last bit?  Well, some thoughts I've got are:

  • Complete a border fence and enforce immigration law, especially for expelling violent criminals 
  • End provisions in the tax and welfare codes that discriminate against marriage
  • Figure out how to punish crime in cities without just alienating minorities (paging Joel Schaffer....)
  • Figure out why so many people love their drugs (ODs kill about 5x more people than does murder....I suspect a lot of these may be quiet suicides)

Aspiring to be a stick in the mud.

pvawter's picture

I find the use of the term "buyback" to be inaccurate. Firearms purchased from a 3rd party cannot properly be bought back by the government. Maybe "incentivized voluntary disarmament" is a better term, or "fleecing the sheep." Smile

Don Johnson's picture

dgszweda wrote:

 

Don Johnson wrote:

 

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Category:Mass_shootings_in_the_United_Ki...

 

 

Well if we look at just the 2020's we have 30 mass shootings in the US (141 killed and 208 injured), and 1 in the UK (6 deaths and 1 injury).  The population of the UK is 67M, the population of the US is 330M.  So the US is about 5x the size of the UK.  The number killed is 24x the amount in the UK and the injured is 208x the amount in the UK.

While there are other mass shootings, the magnitude and quantity are uniquely a US attribute.  The vast majority of US school shootings are under the age of 18.  I do think we need to do a better job in the US in restricting weapons to those who commit these crimes.  The ease to get a weapon is a bit scary.  I totally think we can have common sense gun control that doesn't restrict a single type of weapon to a law abiding, low risk individual.

I am simply countering the claim that there are "no mass shootings in the UK" - see Aaron's comment. Nothing more.

Canadians likewise act smug on this point, but we've had our share as well.

Maranatha!
Don Johnson
Jer 33.3