No Gun, No Respect…

Smith & Wesson Model 60 .38 Special revolver with a 3-inch barrel
The most common type of gun confiscated by police and traced by the ATF are .38 special revolvers, such as this Smith & Wesson Model 60 .38 Special revolver with a 3-inch barrel. (“S&W 60 3in“. Licensed under Public Domain via Wikimedia Commons.)

First off, I’m not anti-Second Amendment (if you’re an American (of the U.S. persuasion) and you don’t know what the Second Amendment is then that’s a problem)…

See, I live out in the sticks and I had to call 911 once because I thought there was a gas leak somewhere in my house and all I got to say about that experience is that our military overran countries faster than it took the emergency responders to get to my house.

It’s not their fault – I just live out in the sticks.

Heck, I found out then that I can’t even call my 911 operator direct. My 911 call goes to somewhere across the border and that operator has to re-direct it back into my state to a different operator.

I can only wonder what would have happened if that 911 call wasn’t for a gas leak (a false alarm, fortunately) but for a home invasion instead?!

You can feel me, right?

So yeah, I’m all about owning a gun as a means of protection of last resort.

But then again, I’m a nice guy.

I can be trusted with a gun.

When I say I am a not a gun-slingin’, trigger-happy nutjob with “adequacy issues” you can take my word for it…

But as for the rest of you all…

I’m beginning to wonder.

What the heck is going on out there?

Unfortunately, it has become my unfortunate belief that we, as a nation, are now just too mean and too rude and too disrespectful and, most dangerously, too short-tempered (what’s up with all the road rage?) to have so many guns – both legal and illegal – locked and loaded and at the ready out there, just itchin’ to mediate our every issue and altercation, however slight.

Something has got to change.

I mean, come on… There were over 11,000 murders committed with a gun in 2013 (according to the Centers for Disease Control (via Wikipedia)).

That’s a lot of humans made dead from mean assholes with guns.

So if we, as a citizenry, are so danged mean and so danged armed, just think what it must be like to have to try to police all of us in an effort to maintain good order and discipline in a society where that kind of anachronistic, Mayberry-like behavior is now shat upon.

Nowadays, it must be pretty darned scary to be a cop.

No wonder they all jack themselves up like Special Forces operators gone wild.

Have you seen some of these Rambo cops?

In-f’n-tense, they are…

It’s hard to believe – and even sadder – that it takes so much firepower to patrol our streets.

Seriously, we have an Intra-Arms Race going on between we angry civilians and the feeling-threatened-and-under-fire Po po, you know, the overly-aggressive-stoppin’-and-friskin’, tank-drivin’ Five-Oh.

Geez…

And then when you throw race into the mix of a messy situation where the police are a majority of the time of a majority skin tone and the citizenry they are bringing their good order and discipline to are of a minority skin tone…

These days someone usually ends up shot.

Just like last night at the protests in response to the first anniversary of the Michael Brown killing.

Look, I’ve written about these things here before and, like then, I don’t have any answers.

But when it comes to race and racism, I do know, despite what my Merriam-Webster dictionary app says, racism is all about power and who has it.

And the fact is, White male Anglo-Saxon Protestants have and, for the foreseeable future, will continue to have the power in this country.

For the record, here is what my app says racism is:

1: a belief that race is the primary determinant of human traits and capacities and that racial differences produce an inherent superiority of a particular race
2: racial prejudice or discrimination

Now, I don’t disagree with what the app says, but in the national grand scheme of things, whose racism is going to hurt more – a WASPy dude’s* or a Black female’s?

Sure it may hurt our WASPy dude feelings that others not like us don’t like us just because they don’t look like us because they are racists of the first or second order, or both. But overall that’s all their racism will do to us – hurt our Privileged and Guilt-ridden White feelings.

Unlike our racism, theirs won’t keep us out of a job.

Or out of a loan.

Or out of a home…

Their racism just doesn’t have the power to do all that harm like ours does.

And sorry to burst your bubbles white racist females, you may think you’re superior to others because of your skin tone, but thanks to our historically patriarchal and sexist society (a subject worthy of a post of its own), you just don’t have as much “clout” to harm as we WASPy dudes have.

Man**, this is depressing.

What is most depressing about it all is how it all feeds off of each other…

The racism increases anger.

The anger increases violence.

The violence increases fear.

The fear increases gun sales.

The gun sales increase death rates.

The increasing death rates increase police presence.

And on and on…

Like I said, I have no answers.

But I do have a voice…

And, for what it’s worth, here I am using it to, if not provide solutions, at least discuss the problems.

Anyway…

This entire unfortunate, depressing post reminds me of that intense scene from the movie Grand Canyon, starring Danny Glover and Kevin Kline, where Glover’s character, a tow truck driver, comes to the aid of…

Ah, what am I trying to explain it for? Just go ahead and watch it…

Peace, y’all…

And remember, Being Nice is a skill that, to be effectively employed, must be continually practiced.

*gender specific
**non-gender specific

Advertisements

47 Replies to “No Gun, No Respect…”

  1. Wonderful post Kurt… Now if we could just get the rest of America to take it to heart… Thank you for discussing the problem… It needs a whole lot of conversation… Loved the clip also… have a ‘peaceful’ evening…
    Michael

    Liked by 2 people

  2. I suspect that this post has to do with the recent publicity in the prejudice of law enforcement. Hands down, some of the recent news articles show a sickening prejudice. I use to work for a local emergency management agency that did not of 2014, hire the diversity of the community. And I grew up with Italian gansters on the police and fire roster and my family were the one who was threated by the mafia and police for helping certain others. I did anyway, because I could. We may or many not be a long way from canceling out prejudice, but I do not blame communites or race. I blame the individual who holds an attitude that they have a right to yield a gun other than self defense. I blame the person who is so narcissistic that he thinks he has a right to kill someone outside of his own life being saved (or someone elses in immediate jeapordy), be it cop or anyone of any race, gangs, mental illness, miltary or citizens. It is not prejudice per say, as in Chicago most fatalities are done by someone of thier own race, it is hate and the loss for the significance of life. We lost communities, and then the state, and then the nation… when one thinks his individual actions do not affect another. Truth is, we are all significant in influence therefore affecting the community in one way or another, a group of people who are affected by your choices, whether family, friends, town etc. No self respect and the respect of community responsibility, and boundaries – is what is at stake when we all dig into our caves as individuals. Guns, they are only an easier way to kill more easily (pull the trigger, doesnt matter how physically weak you are) and more people at a time. It is a problem, usually with non registered gun owners. Easy suicide or stolen guns is more of a problem with registered gun owners. But the reality is anyone, of any race or distinctive group, crosses the boundary when guns are for anything other self defense – violence, hate, racism etc. And if a cop’s life is in danger, shoot to protect. If a citizens life is in danger, shoot to protect. If your life is in immediate danger, shoot the perpetrator without getting sued for it. Having said that, too bad we can yell and hollar about gun control without even noticing the kid in the neighborhood who gets raped and beat up for crossing the street into a ‘territory’ on the way home. If the US wants to get serious about gun control, then get serious about making gangs a classified terrorist group, period.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you for taking the time read and, especially, for leaving such a heartfelt, thought-provoking comment, tmezpoetry. So much to consider so instead of trying to respond to each of your points, all I’ll say in response is something I usually say in regards to our responsibility towards the environment, but it seems to be appropriate for all that you’ve conjured in me; and that is: No one can do everything, but everyone can do something. The thing is deciding what that something will be…

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Great post. I don’t know what the solution is either except for the fact that I really do feel that we’ve all lost touch of what a community is. We have no more sense of community. I mean the kind of community that helps one another, the kind where we can count on each other for the little and big things. Trust is gone. It’s every man for himself. It’s competition. It’s who is has more. How many degrees we’ve got and what type of clout we have in person as well as social media clout. I think this all ties in to racism. Because we have no community, we all feel isolated and we feel like it’s every man for himself. And if you’re the right ethnicity these days, it’s true, you are privileged to an extent.

    We do have to own a gun now because we fear for our lives but that’s where our country has gone. I have family that are cops as well and they’re not white. And no, I’m not really close with them. Regardless, I will say that you are right, it is very hard being a cop these days. I don’t know, I think that it all comes down to feeling like you are a part of a community and if you are then you’d feel like you can trust your neighbor, you can trust the man down the street, you can trust. Period. In some parts of this country, maybe community exists where racism isn’t an issue, where people are friendly and trustworthy and open and no one feels the need to own a gun. But, I don’t know where that city or town is and I’m not sure it exists.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Well said, lpmu. Thank you for saying it. You know, I don’t think there will ever again be such a thing as “community” as we used to know it. Nowadays we essentially gerrymander our communities, both in life and on line, by a self-segregation of sort; and not just by race, but, like you said, by our economic rank, social status, and acquired educational and professional credentials. A lot of it has to do with our upbringing and the socialization process we were put through; but some of it is due to a combination of fear, ignorance, and intellectual laziness.

      Sigh…getting depressed all over again thinking about it. :)

      Thanks again, my friend. I appreciate you taking the time to leave such a thoughtful comment.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. No problem, I enjoy reading great writing. Speaking of which, I noticed that you talk about self-publishing and etc on your blog. I am scheduling a post to come up in the morning about that very topic it’s called “To Self-Publish or Not Self-Publish.” As I am a bit conflicted with it and wanting to do research. Just thought you might want to check out my post and maybe even provide feedback on the subject.

        lilpickmeup.com

        Thanks and keep up the great, unique posts. :)

        Liked by 1 person

    1. Well then, I guess it’s a good thing you all up there only require common sense and don’t require an amendment that “prohibits the making of any law respecting an establishment of religion, impeding the free exercise of religion, abridging the freedom of speech, infringing on the freedom of the press, interfering with the right to peaceably assemble or prohibiting the petitioning for a governmental redress of grievances,” such as our First Amendment does.

      BTW, it’s our somewhat nonsensical Second Amendment that “protects the right of the people to keep and bear arms.” But since you live in Canada, why would you need to know the difference between two amendments to the U.S. Constitution, especially when all you need up there is common sense? :)

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Here in India very few people would want to own guns ; generally criminals have them … your situation in the USA must be aligned with human liberty etc. And I agree with your comments on WASP control of minorities in the US. But as I see it from hinterland India, guns are dangerous business unless tightly controlled. Thanks for the post — it is illuminating and written with a very refreshing clarity.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Kurt,

    I meant to leave a message at your welcome site–but it was just too crowded, and I can see why–your “about” page is the most unique I’ve ever seen! I just wanted to say I appreciate your following my blog.

    Here’s how I feel about handguns: I would feel much safer if every driver had a handgun in the front seat, rather than a mobile device. Because if every driver had a handgun, he/she would know how dangerous it was, and wouldn’t use it. But almost no driver seems to know how dangerous a mobile device (cellphone, iPhone, Smartphone, Blackberry) is–so he/she uses it behind the wheel all the time. As a result, I would be willing to bet that more people die by mobile device usage behind the steering wheel (or walking across the street with a mobile device, or bicycling with a mobile device) than by handgun usage.

    This is why–in my opinion–the most dangerous invention ever is not the handgun but the mobile device.

    Once again, I appreciate your following my blog–and I apologize if this comment is a bit too lengthy.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Kurt,

      I meant to leave a message at your welcome site–but it was just too crowded, and I can see why–your “about” page is the most unique I’ve ever seen! I just wanted to say I appreciate your following my blog.

      Here’s how I feel about handguns: I would feel much safer if every driver had a handgun in the front seat, rather than a mobile device. Because if every driver had a handgun, he/she would know how dangerous it was, and wouldn’t use it. But almost no driver seems to know how dangerous a mobile device (cellphone, iPhone, Smartphone, Blackberry) is–so he/she uses it behind the wheel all the time. As a result, I would be willing to bet that more people die by mobile device usage behind the steering wheel (or walking across the street with a mobile device, or bicycling with a mobile device) than by handgun usage.

      This is why–in my opinion–the most dangerous invention ever is not the handgun but the mobile device.

      Once again, I appreciate your following my blog–and I apologize if this comment is a bit too lengthy.

      Like

  6. A well-considered post on a handful of delicate, sensitive, and difficult positions facing our country. The right to a well-armed, *well-regulated* citizens’ militia, the right not to be shot for one’s skin color or driving ability, the difficulty of being either a minority or a policeman in the country right now. The general degradation of our public civility and the rising meanness of our citizenry, a culture where every minor affront is the cause for angry public rants and villainous slanders. Power, and its abuses. None of these are easy problems to solve, but you’re right: even if you don’t have the answers, it’s important to have the discussions. Keep talking!

    Liked by 2 people

  7. You said, “Unfortunately, it has become my unfortunate belief that we, as a nation, are now just too mean and too rude and too disrespectful and, most dangerously, too short-tempered (what’s up with all the road rage?) to have so many guns”

    You hit many nails right on their heads. I don’t think we’ve seen nuthin yet. The Federal Government is going to be starting austerity programs. People will not be dancing in the streets. The wild west revisited, why don’t nobody want to be sheriff, huh?
    Thank you

    Liked by 1 person

SAY IT LIKE YOU MEAN IT!

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s