Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Who's really in control?

I’m confused,  and I know what you’re going to say…

You’re always confused, so what’s new,

very funny.  

But on this issue, I am truly stymied by the rhetoric that continues to force a wedge between the good people of this country. 

This particular issue is about gun control, and right off the bat I have a problem, why do guns need to be controlled?  Shouldn’t we be asking for the people who use guns to be controlled? 

I know it’s a small thing, the difference a word makes or a simple statement but it’s in the words that we derive meaning and the meaning of gun control is to control the inanimate, a non-thinking piece of metal.  The word control is a noun and it means the power to influence or direct people's behavior or the course of events.  Kind of like the way I try to control my dog, I do try but in the end, he always gets his way and it seems to never be my way.  So much for control.

This term “gun control” has been bantered about for some time and for all that time no one has thought to question the phrase itself.  It is an incorrect phrase, in a sense a non-sequitur, there is no logic in the very premise of the statement making the very statement invalid.  The term control refers directly to the actions of a person or persons with the motivation to alter or regulate a stated or observed behavior.  

I would be less confused if the statement referred to the need to control the buying power of a person or the ability of a person to use a gun, or even the more broad approach that discussed the overall citizenry in specific terms but to attempt to put controls on a gun or a group of guns is illogical.  

Understanding the statement is not the problem, we all know what the statement is trying to convey.  But with so much at stake, whether you’re a gun loving liberal or a gun fearing conservative the issue is clear, some want to take away the rights of ownership and curtail the use of guns, the purchase, sale, and distribution while others want to be free to own, sell and distribute, (sounds like a drug dealer).  

Two obviously diverging points of view but the gun itself has nothing to do with this issue.  It must be agreed that the persons involved are the ones who need the control if controls are truly needed.
The other day I was swinging a hammer at some unsuspecting nail.  I’m actually pretty good with a hammer but on this occasion, my attention slipped as did my hammer hitting my hand.  I tell you, at that moment I thought it would be a great idea to have some controls on that errant hammer, especially since it caused me great pain and harm.  I can see no better law than to curtail the rights of that hammer, making sure that hammers around the world are controlled and regulated; my hand hurts and I want that hammer punished, banished, melted down; maybe we could have a hammer buyback program, I would gladly sell this instrument of torture back to the city or county…

The point I’m making is that people need to be responsible.  Hammers don’t kill people, hammers kill guns…oh, wait I think I have that wrong.  Hammers kill people with gun…No that’s not it either.  Hammers and guns have rights people don’t…sounds good but still not right…I think you get the idea.  The idea of control when directed toward the individual would not sit well with the American public, so it’s so much easier to talk about controlling guns and hammers.  Guns don’t complain and I actually still need my hammer so it’s not going to complain, especially since I hit it against the cement and taught it a lesson it will not soon forget.

The real lesson here is in the politicization of a simple issue.  If they wanted to control gun use why not simply say “we want to control the people who use a gun?”  I for one would be overjoyed to hear the truth of that statement, I might not like the plan toward their attempts to control me but at least I would know what they were really trying to do.