Friday, January 25, 2013

Response to a tragedy, "thank you."

Violent, senseless acts of violence in our society pain many of us deeply. If they don't bother us, at least a little bit, something is wrong with us. 

To read a heartbreaking "thank you" from the daughter of a woman who was murdered reminds us that these tragedies touch more than just the victims hit by bullets, or witnesses to the act. 

It's important not to just "do something!" in the wake of such tragedies. Something surely must be done, but we should, as the author  of the linked article said, work towards "good policy based on good reasoning. Not the quickfire of emotion."

Unfortunately, some misplace their blame on the tools, rather than the person. Hence the phrases "gun violence," "gun murder," "gun crime." This takes our attention away from the actual causes of these tragedies, and doesn't move us any closer to a solution. This is evidenced when you review crime statistics around the world after gun control has been implemented (even total bans on entire classes of firearms in the UK and Australia), and see there has NEVER been any significant or consistent reduction in violent firearm-related crime. 

As painful as firearm-related tragedies are, it is a disservice to the victims and their families to continue to push for new laws which would not have saved their lives, and punish the rest of society in the process.  

False is the idea of utility that sacrifices a thousand real advantages for one imaginary or trifling inconvenience; that would take fire from men because it burns, and water because one may drown in it; that has no remedy for evils except destruction. The laws that forbid the carrying of arms are laws of such a nature. They disarm only those who are neither inclined nor determined to commit crimes.
-- Cesare Beccaria, as quoted by Thomas Jefferson's Commonplace book


1 comment:

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