DANIEL S. writes:
The New York Times published an opinion piece on Friday by a certain Wendy Button, a single, middle-aged woman and Democratic operative (i.e. the model feminist). Button was the victim of a home break-in at one point and said she considered buying a gun to defend herself in the aftermath. She reconsidered after suffering from a bout of depression in which she apparently struggled with suicidal impulses. The entire point of her column from what I could discern is that she wants gun control so that people who suffer from depression will not be able to commit suicide by shooting themselves (as if someone determined to end their life would not find some other method).
The message that I took away from the article is that the feminist lifestyle leads to depression, the progressives want the state to micromanage their lives (and ours!), and that liberals will find any weird or absurd excuse to abolish the Second Amendment.
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Kevin M. writes:
A number of years ago I knew a man, first name Joe, who was a building inspector for the state of Massachusetts. He was working on his Ph.D. in philosophy at the time, and to make a very long story short, he was one of a very small number of dedicated liberals for whom I had significant respect. He was easily one of the most brilliant men I have ever met. His colleagues claimed that when he gave testimony in court on building code violations, he has drawn opposing counsel to near tears with his photographic memory of the Mass building code. One of his passions was reading history books on the US Prohibition era. He knew the Volstead Act better than Elliot Ness did. He claimed to have read over ninety books on Prohibition.
One day, I think it was a week after Superbowl Sunday, he is visiting me and my roommate in Newburyport along with eight other men and the topic of guns comes up. There had been some mass shooting or multiple homocide in the news, and, being Massachusetts, all the reporters are screaming how we need to abolish the Second Amendment. Everyone knows Joe is a Kennedy-loving liberal and so we all know he’s going to chime in. And he does.
“If anyone ever succeeds in getting the Second Amendment repealed, you all need to run for your lives. Seriously, sell the house, grab the kids and get out of this country with all the cash you can. They get rid of the right to bear arms, and you’ll have a full-blown civil war within ninety days.” And then he gives us a lecture that spanned around 45 minutes on how if we thought Al Capone was a problem, we had no idea what would transpire when the US gov’t not only made buying a gun illegal, it sought to collect the millions of guns already out there.
If I had videotaped what he told us, I could load it onto YouTube and I would bet one of my kidneys it would have 50,000,000 hits in less than 30 days. A liberal philosophy student who studied Prohibition and earned a living inspecting buildings made a case for the Second Amendment that utterly floored everyone in the room. I’ll bet highly placed Democrats are thinking like the Saudi royals and have escape plans in the event the moron liberals actually get the Second Amendment repealed. Not even a second 9/11, not even a nuclear one, would tear this country apart faster than making guns illegal.
Thomas Osborne writes:
The arguments against the Second Amendment (there must be so many Founding Fathers rolling around in their graves that I am afraid that the New Madrid Fault will suddenly make the worst earthquake the nation has ever known) continue to be even more horrifying, and when we come to the type of a person who wants to control our lives because they can’t control theirs, I feel that these are examples of people who really do need to be institutionalized. Put all those FEMA camps to good use! Those people are begging for it. If they want to have the world of The Hunger Games, let THEM populate the enslaved laboring districts. And then leave the rest of us alone.
It’s very easy for a person to “toy” around with the idea of suicide. Perhaps everybody has done it at one time or another in their life. I know that I used to think that if wanted to kill myself, how would I do it? For sure, I would take the easy and painless way out, and that is via the exhaust pipe of my car while enclosed in a garage. I understand that it would be a calm and peaceful way to go…just fade away into sleep. Those who kill themselves by horrifying methods must actually be demonic, for they have demonstrated an amazing amount of hatred toward the most precious gift that a person can be SURE that he or she has. (Dante must have described some circle of Hell where those people will immediately go.) And I put using a gun to blow away oneself to be in that “horrifying” category. Either that, or they have never had any experience with a gun in their entire life, pulling that trigger with it pointed at themselves must be the first (and only) gun shot they ever made. Why I say that is when I was deciding what kind of a gun to buy, I became a member of a shooting range where you could try out all sorts of different guns. This shooting range was indoors, behind two layers of doors, and when you went in there, you had to make sure that both doors weren’t open at the same time, because the noise of the gunshots is too loud, which was detrimental to the people working in the nearby office. You have to wear ear-protectors and eye-protectors when you go in there, because otherwise you can (and most likely will) damage your own hearing, and possibly hurt your eyes, as well (from the gunpowder).
You attach your target of a “man” to a cable, press a button, and the target flies backward into a dark depth until it is at a distance that you want it. You take careful aim, strongly holding the gun the way the handgun course taught you (preparing for the immense backward force that will result), and then squeeze the trigger at a sure, steady, even pressure. The resulting EXPLOSION is amazing; I don’t think a non-gun user really has any idea. There is a quick explosive ball of fire about a foot in diameter issuing out the gun barrel, along with an attendant spray of gunpowder. It blew me away to think that THIS much destructive force was exploding only about four inches from my fingers. It gave me an immense and intractable respect for what this instrument can do; it’s like holding the head of an angry anaconda in your hands. I realized that never, never, ever would I aim that thing at MYSELF. Do I have an unusual amount of love for my body, my life, and God who gave me this life? Maybe so, but the force is so great that I wonder what kind of danger will lead me to even pulling this trigger when the gun is aimed at an assailant. I am sure that I will do so if I need to, but believe me, the situation would have to be very, very serious. This is not easy or casual.
In my view, the very best “gun control” imaginable is for a person to actually shoot a gun. That is when you realize what it is that you actually have in your hands. All this other stuff is just false imagining and seeing useless images in movies and video games, which are just fantasy. If the government really wanted fewer shooting deaths, they would require that every citizen own a gun and shoot it at a shooting range regularly to keep up that high level of respect for its power; that’s when you realize that you NEVER actually want to shoot a person unless you absolutely have to.
Oh, and one other thing about suicide, and further proof to me that it is demonic. If one really decides that death is the solution to their misery, why wouldn’t they finally step out of their distasteful life and pursue that dream that they always wanted, but were too cowardly to attempt? They would have nothing to lose. How empowering would that be for them, to just disappear into the world that they really wanted, totally risk free, because, well, they were going to kill themselves anyway, so why fear any failure? But no, they wouldn’t even consider something positive and affirming like that, which means that they ARE nothing. Their wish is to blow to bits the precious cells of this phenomenal creation that they represent. To me, there is only one force in creation that thinks that way. And we should not be ruled by people who are under the thrall of that force.
Wendy Button says: “According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 38,364 Americans lost that fight in 2010 and committed suicide; 19,392 used a gun.” That’s slightly more than half. Half of all households already have a legal gun. Many, many more have illegal guns. Would the half who used a gun to commit suicide, not have committed suicide in some other way, as did the other half? If you want to kill yourself, as Laura Wood said, you’ll find your method.
But, I can’t imagine someone not spending a good deal of time agonizing too, about their method.
There is an element of certainty, immediacy and convenience associated with suicide by a firearm. Other methods: hanging, poison, drug overdose, drowning, jumping from a height, opening of veins, etc; all provide time for terrified second thoughts; too late, but you know it may happen. An almost casually placed bullet into the head is immediate and is assumed painless. No chance to regret. I do believe that, as a practical matter, using a gun is an obvious best choice if you have one. But, a commitment to kill yourself isn’t usually spontaneous. People have plenty of time to plan. Acquiring a gun is no big deal. Having a gun already is not the commitment.
In the case of adolescents, suicide is often an impulsive act and I am not at all dismissive of concerns that readily available guns may result in more suicides, though I do not accept the argument that this risk justifies the sort of legislative gun control favored by liberals.
Gun owners should be sensitive to the inherent impulsiveness and mood swings of adolescents and of anyone who is mentally unstable. I was just reading the other day — unfortunately, I don’t have the time to dig up the link right now — that between 1950 and 1990 (the same may be true today), suicide among teenagers was highest in the Rocky Mountain states, where gun ownership is high, and the most common method was gunshot, typically by males. It is common sense that gun owners should exercise serious caution when they live with adolescents or anyone who is prone to mood swings or mental instability. While there are many other methods of suicide, a gun provides the most effective means and just because someone chooses that method does not mean he really wants to die.
Daniel S. writes:
It had not occurred to me earlier when writing my comment, but I realized upon rereading my comment that Ms. Button is casting suicide in a negative light, as something to be avoided and possibly condemned (why else should we seek to thwart it through gun control?). And yet, is not suicide merely another free choice in the worldview of liberal individualism? Why is suicide any more regrettable than having an abortion or frequent casual sexual relationships? Why is it any of our business to try to hinder those who wish to take their lives? It is their body after all. Are they not free to chose to do to it as they will provided to inflict no physical harm on others? Isn’t that the entire underpinning of liberal morality?
I would quote Fr. Seraphim Rose here:
Man’s freedom has been given him to choose between the true God and himself, between the true path to deification whereon the self is humbled and crucified in this life to be resurrected and exalted in God in eternity, and the false path of self-deification which promises exaltation in this life but ends in the Abyss.
The nihilistic, narcissistic feminism of Ms. Button can only but lead to a state of suicidal despair (how many “empowered” feminist women are dependent on antidepressants after all?).