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Gun Control or Gun Freedom from a Biological Perspective

I have to admit this is a new angle on the issue I haven’t seen before in the media. The article is one of those middle ground articles, and one of my areas of disagreement is that the debate are at dogmatic poles. It only seems that way because the media doesn’t know anything else, and their reporting on the issue sucks. In truth, we’re currently at a middle ground, and will have reached a consensus when one side can no longer move the debate to one side or another very much. I tend to view the role of the courts in this whole affair as eliminating the outliers (like Chicago, New York, New Jersey, etc) and forcing on them a basic respect for the right, while perhaps letting them get away with a bit more in the way of controls as other places. One of my big beefs with these middle ground people is a lack of understanding that politics just doesn’t work like that. Politics arrives at a middle ground, because people on both sides struggle, and reach the limits of their political power.

UPDATE: Bill Quick of Daily Pundit:

You stand there without your gun, and I’ll attack you with a club and beat you to death. You obviously don’t need a gun because I don’t have one. Or if you’re weak enough, I’ll just beat you to death with my bare fists. No weapon needed.

Heh. I wonder how much middle ground he could find in that scenario. I think there was actually a lot of wisdom wrapped up in the old saying that God may have made man, but it was Sam Colt that made them equal.

8 Responses to “Gun Control or Gun Freedom from a Biological Perspective”

  1. Zermoid says:

    From the article:
    “We have to be careful not to adopt a media mindset about outlier tragedies. That mindset hinges on a cognitive error known as availability bias – the most accessible and available information becomes top-of-mind and disproportionately influences the debate.”

    I would add that the media also has a negativity bias, that they tend to gravitate towards negative stories, especially about guns, while ignoring positive stories like the use of guns to prevent crime.

    The recent stories about the guy who shot a man who was stabbing people randomly at a store, the guy who shot a man who decided to shoot up a church, and the old guy who stopped a armed robbery at the internet cafe, all barely were mentioned in the mainstream media, but one guy succeeds in killing several people in a victim disarmament zone and they can’t stop talking about it.

  2. mac says:

    It seems the author knows about as much about biology and species survival as I do: very little. The article takes a couple of dodges towards gun control and then backs off, concluding with the dogmatic gun control/gun rights “poles are not aligned with our biological reality;”

    Um…WTH?

    Here, let me try.

    Cooperative groups may suppress individual wants, needs, and even safety, for the greater common good. Exceptionally fit individuals, can be cast out of the group if those individuals diminish the fitness of the group as a whole.

    Criminals are outside of these cooperative groups. They threaten group survival, though some may appear to be part of the group. This is why it gun rights are in line with cooperative, rather than competitive groups. The more people who are armed, the greater the group’s survival chances.

    Gun control is the purview of competitive survival. Those few born with exceptional strength, size, cunning, and ruthlessness do not want to compete with their lessers. They’re terrified that all the power they’ve amassed could be taken away by an ordinary person. This explains why they simultaneously want to restrict firearms for the masses, yet keep themselves heavily armed, whether personally or by proxy (police, security).

    The above paragraphs are pure fabrication. I have no special education in species survival or psychology. I took what little I’ve read in pop biology and psychology, applied logic, and constructed an argument to illustrate my perspective. It’s likely drek, though it could be right for the wrong reasons.

    Most probably, biology doesn’t impact the gun control/rights debate beyond fear and survival emotions. That doesn’t make both sides equivalent. Gun control is still wrong.

    • Alpheus says:

      Humans are weird. We embody so many conflicting values, it’s rather funny.

      Voluntary cooperation is crucial for our survival; our ability to live in family units, and in larger tribal units, are likely what made us who we are.

      On the other hand, competition–both friendly and otherwise–is also what made us who we are. On a previous thread here, a couple of months ago, someone made the comment, “if only we were peaceful–imagine how advanced we would be!” Someone else pointed out that the *great majority* of our technological advancement was the result of tribes continuously fighting one another; indeed, the history of metallurgy is also a histor of arms-racing. For that matter, it is theorized that we are intelligent, precisely because of the social competition for leadership of the tribe, and for dealing with politics in general!

      The Left likes to think we are basically good, and that it’s society corrupts us; the Right (particularly religous nuts like me) tend to believe that each person is inherently evil, and that we need to be on-guard to make sure we don’t fall into evil; and there seems to be this attitude that these are conflicting viewpoints.

      Overall, I think both viewpoints are right: individuals are born naturally good, but this good can be corrupted by society; individuals are *also* born naturally evil, and without society’s influence, individuals will become corrupt. For the most part, people’s innate goodness overrides the evil, and where it doesn’t, rational self-interest can tap into our natural evils (like greed and fear) to help keep us in line–so government is largely unnecessary (and thank goodness for that! I would *not* like it if I had to be followed around by a cop every moment of the day, to keep me in line!).

      But heaven help the society that embraces the corruption in each individual, rather than try to limit the damage it can cause–such societies have arisen in the past, and have proven to be self-destructive.

  3. Alpheus says:

    “””Let’s begin with a dogmatic “gun ownership at any cost” stance and see how it fits in the competition-cooperation scheme. This stance is predicated on the belief that someone out there is either already trying, or will try, to do you harm and take what is yours. That “someone” could be another person(s), or it might be the government. The main point is the stance is rooted in a pure competition mindset. To survive, one must have better weapons to fight off competitors who would do you harm and take your resources.”””

    I’m not quite sure what it is about this paragraph, but I find it deeply offensive. Perhaps it’s this notion that this represents a “pure competition” mindset…when the reality is, we can cooperate all we want, but there will *always* be those few outliers who are going to do more than just “compete”, but downright *kill* you, and they *might not* even do it for your resources, but just for their own personal pleasure!

    Indeed, if the “Let’s legalize guns” meme were so competition-only, and the “let’s control everything” so cooperation-friendly, then the Brady/VPC shills would have the upper hand! But the NRA and friends have succeeded so wildly, because of cooperation among gun activists.

    Also, this idea that we can find “middle ground” with people who want to take away our rights is also absurd. It will *always* result in limits to our rights. I recall someone discussing how you would find common ground with terrorists:

    — TERRORIST: We want you all dead!

    — NEGOTIATOR: But we want to live! How about you only kill three-fourths of us?

    — TERRORIST: NO! We want you all DEAD!

    — NEGOTIATOR: Ok. Well, how about half?

    In the end, any attempt to find common ground results in innocent lives lost, and the Terrorist will *still* not be satisfied. It’s also process that, if iterated, *will* result in most everyone dead!

    And so it is with Gun Rights, and rights in general (for these shills aren’t satisfied with taking *just* our gun rights away–erosions of free speech, freedom of association, the right to be secure in our possessions, even our very right to life–are all fair game, in trying to establish a gun-free culture): every demand that those Brady/VPC shills make is a “good first step”; and after any given step is made, they *immediately* talk about making the next step. I do not want to seek common ground with such shills; indeed, I enjoy seeing their tears, and listening to their shrieks of terror, as their political ambitions are crushed under our relentless defense of our rights and freedoms!

    • GMC70 says:

      “indeed, I enjoy seeing their tears, and listening to their shrieks of terror, as their political ambitions are crushed under our relentless defense of our rights and freedoms!”

      Yup.

      What is best in life (at least, as to the enemies of freedom)? See it here. It’s never been said better.

      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6PQ6335puOc

  4. Ken says:

    I wonder if the antis fully comprehend the strength of the pro-gun coalition–and yes, it is a coalition, not the monolithic group of Larry the Cable Guys they think it is. The fact is that very few antigun strongholds are more than 50 miles from overwhelmingly pro-gun areas; a majority of pro-gunners are at least a five-hour drive away from antigun strongholds. Most pro-gunners are relatively traditional blue-collar workers, as opposed to the “lazy redneck” stereotype; a large minority are white collar types.

    It isn’t the demographics of Republicans, or even independents, that cause the Democrats to shy away from this issue. It’s their own demographics: over half of Democrats have a favorable view of the NRA. Contrary to common belief, it wasn’t the 1994 GOP landslide that caused the Dems to drop gun control like a hot potato. It was the much more muddled 2000 election–specifically the post-election polls that showed that they had lost numerous states over the gun issue, while winning exactly none from it. Those swing states they did win, such as Michigan, were in spite of the overall drag on the ticket due to their gun control support.

    Incidentally, this is one reason why I hold “moderate” Republican pundits in such low regard. They claim to be interested in making the GOP more electable. Yet on this issue, they typically align themselves with the radical left–and yes, any position that is opposed by 68% of the American people is radical left. I agree that the GOP should move to the center–and the defeat of anti-gun extremist Richard Lugar by Richard Mourdock, from the pro-gun mainstream, suggests that they are doing just that.

  5. WallPhone says:

    Ants to Yacks, social animals are likely to be armed.

  6. James Nelson says:

    People who think violence would go away without guns are historically ignorant. Not even Chicago equals the normal level of violence and murder in a medieval city pre gun powder. No guns means that the young, strong and wealthy can prey on who they like. Swords are only effective if you can afford the massive level of training it takes to be proficient. KungFu movies aside, even a trained man doesn’t stand much of a chance against multiple opponents.
    I could say more, but Marco has said it so much better with “Why The Gun Is Civilization”. Go read it, I’m the just guy in the background yelling “Yeah Marco.”

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