GUN RIGHTS ARE PERSONAL POWER RIGHTS
Federal attempts to limit gun rights are a direct assault on personal autonomy at a time when Americans are being encouraged to have less and less autonomy. The psychological significance of arming oneself includes the intention to defend one’s property and family. It requires SELF-possession to possess a firearm for SELF-protection. And that’s the real reason that radical Democrats want to take firearms away from Americans or prevent them from acquiring them.
What are some of the ways the federal government and state governments have already shown its hostility toward personal power? Here are just a few:
- Mandatory shutdowns of private businesses during the pandemic, despite unclear evidence of a public health imperative to do so
- Mandatory use of masks, despite unclear evidence of their effectiveness
- Initiatives to increase taxes
- Resistance to ensuring that only American citizens vote and that all votes are counted
- Failure to protect private property in the face of riots
- Failure to reinforce the border, thus depriving every American of the rights and privileges of citizenship that are purchased, in part, via paying taxes
- Continued application of draconian drug laws to imprison Americans
- Refusal to address the core reasons for the surge in violence in America, including a failed mental health care system (which, if rebuilt, would actually rebuild the autonomy of individuals by restoring their health)
- Arbitrary limits on parental rights and the substituting of the “state as parent”
The truth is contrary to what those who wish to destroy individual liberty assert. Here are some relevant facts that fly in the face of proposed gun control measures:
- The cities most plagued with violent crimes, including murder, are in states with the strictest gun control measures, like Chicago.
- The worst episode of school violence was not committed with a gun. It occurred in 1927 in Michigan and was committed using explosives. Thirty-eight children, along with teachers and the school superintendent and others were killed.
- While suicides in the United States most often involve guns, the rate of suicide in the U.S. is less than 1/5 that of, for example, South Korea, where suicides almost never occur using a gun. Hence, it stands to reason that taking guns away from U.S. citizens won’t stop suicide; it will just stop people from using guns as much. The suicide rate, I would predict, would stay exactly the same (or get worse, since people feeling disempowered is never good for their mental health).
Here’s another lie of those who want to step on the free will and rights of others: Those who have suffered a mental illness should never have guns. That’s preposterous, given that estimates place the percentage of Americans with a diagnosable mental illness at about 25 percent. Only an infinitesimal number of those Americans will commit violent acts of any kind. There are countless police officers and hunters and military personnel who never hurt another human being, despite having been treated for depression or anxiety or attention deficit disorder or another of the over 300 psychiatric disorders catalogued in the (far-too-trusted) Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Psychiatric Disorders (DSM). Suggesting they generally can’t be trusted to own guns is preposterous.
It’s time for Americans to realize that actively resisting the encroachment by government upon their human rights is a way to turn the pain of government overreach into personal power.
Dr. Keith Ablow
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