Random Thoughts About Gun Owners, Anger Management and Hurricane Sandy

This is a tale of two gun owners. Gun owner A is a bit meek and a bit of a geek. Deep down, he’s a mess. His father was cold and distant and slightly embarrassed by his son. His mother was profoundly . . . unreliable. Gun owner A suffers from self-loathing and anti-social tendencies; based on an unconscious belief that people don’t like or respect him. At the same time, gun owner A’s something of a Clint Eastwood wanna-be. He dreams of vindicating himself by taking down a bad guy. Bottom line: he’s got simmering anger issues . . .

At some point, an interpersonal conflict escalates out of control. Could be a parking lot dispute or a domestic disturbance. He snaps, draws and fires; killing an innocent person in an uncontrollable rage. He knows he shouldn’t have turned to his gun but he couldn’t control his temper.

Gun grabbers think all gun owners are some sort of variation on this theme. Not to put too fine a point on it, they consider armed Americans ticking time bombs. Spree killers like James Holmes and Seung-Hui Cho are just like you and me, only slightly more unstable. But not like them (gun control advocates). Obviously. Because they don’t own guns.

In other words, “there but for the grace of gun control laws go thousands of potentially murderous Americans.” Whether that belief is based on psychological projection or a profound [mis]understanding of the human condition depends on your perspective. But there’s no question that antis believe in restricting gun ownership to prevent “senseless” tragedies born of unchecked emotions.

For contrast, let’s imagine gun owner B . . .

Gun owner B is a bit of a nerd and a non-conformist. Deep down, he’s a survivor. His father was proud of his son but was busy putting food on the table. His mother worked hard for the money. Over the years, gun owner B has learned how to cope with stress. Despite his expertise with firearms, he doesn’t see himself as society’s “sheepdog.” Bottom line: his family is his first priority.

At some point, an interpersonal conflict escalates out of control. Could be a parking lot dispute or a domestic disturbance. He does whatever he needs to do—walk it down and/or walk away—to keep the situation from escalating to physical violence. He’s not a coward. He simply know that an uncontrollable emotional/ballistic outburst would endanger himself and his gun rights. And thus his family.

Gun grabbers scoff at this characterization. They consider it delusional; gun owners who believe they can control their temper and not go off half-cocked are kidding themselves. We’re all amoral animals underneath. All it takes it the right stimulus and BANG! The red mist comes down. How many bloody news reports or episodes of Jerry Springer does one have to watch to establish that “fact”?

Having lost numerous battles to ban guns in America, the gun control industry now attempts to thread the needle on the issue of psychological fitness. They claim they want to craft laws that prevent the “bad” (i.e. mentally unfit) people from getting guns while allowing the “good” (i.e. sane) people to have access to armed self-defense. To the point where psychological testing is on the table.

No really. Here in Rhode Island local police chiefs attempted to include a formal psychological test in the concealed carry permitting process. That didn’t fly, but the Providence cops still interview applicants to determine their suitability. And personally interview the applicant’s three references.

Make no mistake: when licensing authorities ask for letters of reference or reserve the right to deny a license to carry based on the applicant’s “character,” they are operating under the assumption that the applicant is crazy until proven sane. Because gun control advocates genuinely believe that we’re all crazy, underneath.

There’s a wider point here about the antis’ view of society. They consider government a necessary restraint on the individual’s fundamentally amoral/selfish underpinning. Without government—complete with a monopoly on force—chaos. You can see this perspective in the MSM’s coverage of Hurricane Sandy’s aftermath, with their focus on government aid (or lack thereof), rather than individual and communal self-reliance and initiative.

I digress. When it comes to guns and anger, there are two truths which I hold to be self-evident. Shooting is an extremely good way to relieve stress. And the government has no business trying to prevent mentally unfit Americans from becoming legal gun owners or obtaining a concealed carry license.

As Cybill and the girls prove in the clip above, the first proposition is easily proved by a trip to the gun range (as scary as antis may find the anger management piece). The second assertion is not provable per se. Nor does it have to be. According to the Second Amendment to the United States Constitution, the government is barred from infringing on Americans’ right to keep and bear arms.

Psych evals are a clear infringement on our Constitutionally protected firearms freedoms. Who would do the testing? What criteria would they use? Who rates the tests? What’s the appeal process? How long would a “ban” last? Would anti-depressant medications be considered? There are lots of ways it could go wrong.

In fact, the whole “common sense” psychological evaluation process is guaranteed to run afoul of the antis’ Catch-22. Anyone who wants a gun for personal protection is mentally unstable. Hence they shouldn’t have one. Application denied.

I’m a cynical person. I trust no one unless I have to (e.g., airline pilots). But I have faith in my fellow man. There are plenty of people I could depend on in a crisis to help me and/or my daughter, as I would help them. People with both character and self-control.

Despite what you see on TV, as the entitlement class shows its ingrained passivity in the face of life-threatening danger, I’d go so far as to say that most Americans have these qualities. Strangely enough, the ones I know who possess them to the greatest degree carry a gun.

comments

  1. avatar barnslayer says:

    This is all BS. The police are not qualified to make psychological judgements. Look how often the “experts” get it wrong granting parole to known offenders. The truth is any sort of vague evaluation is an opportunity for a permit to be denied. Similarly are police run safety tests. If the top brass, mayor etc. don’t want you to have a gun permit… these tests/evaluations are their means to an end.

    1. avatar Gregg says:

      This – I couldn’t agree more…

    2. avatar Gs650g says:

      The cops have crazies in their own ranks who need to be flushed out.

  2. avatar bontai Joe says:

    Having personally survived hurrican Sandy, and seeing my “fellow man” behave while waiting in gas lines, watching the news of looters on Staten Island and Long Island, I am sure that if it already hasn’t happened, that we will see somebody shooting somebody else over 5 gallons of gas, or stealing water. Folks in Staten Island are mostly riding on their last raw nerve, and “his holiness” the dwarf mayor of NYC ain’t doing much to help the situation. His VERY public decrees about how the NY Marathon must go on and it’s need for porta potties and generators were more important than the needs of the citizens of his city angered a LOT of folks. He did finally cancel the race, but I suspect that someone on his staff must of grabbed him and convinced him that he was going to be killed if he didn’t. I hope we see some stories of gun owners protecting others from criminals, but I fear that we will see stories about folks being shot for cutting into a line for gasoline. Things are not good here, even in eastern PA. Folks from NJ and even NY are driving out here to get gas, buy gas cans and ice, and they are not very polite about it. Local folks are getting angry about not being able to get supplies because the out of staters are gobbling everything up. This is a real “preview” of exactly what will happen around here should the poop really hit the ventilator. The city dwellers will be coming to my neck of the woods the instant their supplies run out and try to take my stuff. I now know that I don’t have enough ammo, and need to stockpile more other stuff as well. for those of you that don’t believe this, you had best watch the news, because it is happening. We have a HUGE population of people right now, screaming, “Where is my FEMA trailer? Where is my city provided food and water? I want my free stuff right now!!!” All because they are taught to believe that they are intitled to it. Where as folks in my area stockpiled food, water, gasoline, batteries, etc several days in advance of the storm, My neighbors are out with their own truck and tools cutting up fallen trees, repairing their homes and not waiting for some entity from the gubment to come and do it for them. Totally different culture.

    1. avatar barnslayer says:

      I’m in north Nassau County in a very liberal area (is that redundant?). Dittos everything you said! We just got power back last night. Tons of folks still in the dark and worse. I’d like to add, Bloomberg is a self-important bastard and Chris Christie is a turncoat whore. Thanks God for transistor radios.

    2. avatar barnslayer says:

      Dittos on everything you said. I’m in north Nassau.

    3. avatar JPD says:

      Your experience from Sandy is predictable. Your evaluation of your fellow man is also on target.

      Here in Texas we see the same thing when a Hurricane, flood, or Tornado comes through.

      I volunteer for Red Cross and in the ER of a local public hospital. The numbers of unprepared, selfish, stupid, entitled people is beyond belief.

    4. avatar Diorama says:

      Amen, brother. God bless!

    5. avatar Hoth says:

      Grasshoppers vs. Ants. As always in situations like this.

    6. avatar Matt in FL says:

      bontai, I’m a little late getting to this thread, but I totally understand where you’re coming from. I’ve lived all my life in Florida, and to be honest, my disaster preparedness has been pretty much nonexistent, despite living through several dozen hurricanes, some of them major. I’ve always been pretty much able to pick up and go if the need arose. If my apartment was wiped out tomorrow, there’s a dozen places I could go, from in town to Virginia. I’ve nothing tying me to this neighborhood or city, or even state.

      That said, I spent much of this weekend researching preparedness for myself. Not because I’m afraid of the lights being off if a hurricane came through. I’m still not worried about that. I’m worried about the people around me, and how they will react when the lights go off. Seeing how the people in NY/NJ have behaved gives me more concern than any hurricane that’s ever swept over my house. My preparedness leans decidedly toward the self-protection side of things. Or at least it will, when I’m done. This storm was an eye-opener for me.

  3. avatar JPD says:

    Well written, thoughtful article..

  4. avatar ST says:

    “Gun grabbers think all gun owners are some variation on this theme. Not to put too fine a point on it, they consider Armed Americans ticking time bombs.”

    To continue the above theme, the “gun grabbers” know their own emotional state, and realize at a core level that if they got angry enough THEY would not hesitate to use a weapon to coldly murder a fellow person.

    This isn’t a healthy attitude, as an immature but well meaning person considers the very thought of violence in any form offensive and resorts to psychological avoidance tactics like displacement to maintain the personal impression that they are a “good person” because , natch, good people are *incapable* of violence.

    We get some unpleasant side effects from all these mental gymnastics.Since all violence is considered repugnant, even when soldiers and cops do it for the good of the community violence is still wrong (remember theres no such thing as “good violence), which begets the common left-leaning hostility observed towards military and police agencies. It also generates the common refrain that only police and military should carry weapons ,because the necessary use of violence is something which is best delegated to a government agency which is as far out of civil sight and interaction as possible. Again, look at the movements by some colleges to remove military ROTC squadrons from their grounds.

    The next ugly side effect is their perception of the common man. Since good people are incapable of violence life should be peachy for them , but in fact this causes a problem for the emotionally crippled.How can these emotionally hurt people KNOW everyone around them is a good person? They cannot very well meet and interact with all 300 odd million people in the United States of America to determine someone’s good or evil nature. They thus must rely on an outside entity to do the vetting for them-enter psychological exams and Brady Background Checks, stage left. Now they can relax knowing that if they’re not making sure only good people own guns, someone on the government payroll is.

    OH! But Holmes passed his background check you say? Cho too?

    Crap.They’re still left with the problem of making sure 300 million people aren’t bad news. The most efficient way to solve the problem is to blanket deny everyone and ensure only the people they’re *comfortable* with are armed. Comfort is assured by long, expensive drawn out permit processes that accomplish the goal of ensuring only a “good person” who is thus incapable of violence is allowed a firearm. This factor is why shall issue CCW setups with police agencies handing out permits to people they are friends with doesn’t bother the anti gun camp-if you know the Chief of Police well enough to get a permit you meet the “good person” criterion , or you wouldn’t be buddies with the Top Cop.

    For more proof of this situation, note that anti-gun people usually don’t mind if close friends and family are armed. That status quo is OK because the emotionally immature person knows the individuals closely enough to judge them as “good people”, so instead of a government agency doing the vetting they’re close enough to judge for themselves. My NYC-born ex gf was like this-hated guns and everything to do with them, but accepted me carrying them.

    The above points to the source of our national problem with gun control as a matter of mental maturity regarding the nature of violence. The system of adverse firearm legislation and cultural support of failed gun control policies stems from a collective group of anti-gun people who all share in their failure to understand and manage their own violent tendencies, and thus think all of humankind is incapable of doing so themselves until proven otherwise.

    1. avatar 40&2000 says:

      I work with a fellow who is very antigun. Whenever the subject comes up he states that he used to own guns and every time he owned one he’s used it. He has told me a few stories about pulling them on people (in self defence). When I point out that he was doing dumb things with dumb people in dumb places he doesn’t respond. When I point out that I have bee around guns my entire life and never pointed one at a human being he doesn’t have much to say either.

      1. avatar DerryM says:

        @ST Your expansion on what RF wrote is very good and I agree with both you and RF.
        I would add that the basically negative view of people the anti-gunners project is reflected in the Government, as well. It runs counter to what the Founders thought because it essentially denies that Government gets its legitimacy from “The Consent of the Governed”, which was a central theme in the Founder’s thinking.

        Now, the Government we have authorized is telling us that we are “not (intellectually or morally) fit to govern ourselves and cannot be trusted to think and act intelligently and morally” in the society we enabled and authorized at the founding of the Republic. This is the essence of what we are being told by the progressive/socialists in society and in the Government as they seek to disarm us, which is only a first-step to undoing other Rights under the guise that the Government and Rulers “know best” what is good for the People (Governed).

  5. avatar Diorama says:

    Sigh… Here in Europe many countries already employ the psychological exam as part of the medical exam needed in order to get a firearms permit…

    1. avatar Pascal says:

      In Europe most of the population believes in submitting to the will of the gov’t. And sacrificing liberty for some false sense of security. The financial crises should have taught them that giving more to the gov’t takes away more from individuals, but that lesson was lost. Instead European society would rather be ignorant and polite versus taking back their liberty.

    2. avatar jwm says:

      Because in europe owning a gun is a privilege and not a right. You must jump thru whatever hoops the G tells you to or your privilege gets revoked. In America gun ownership is a right written into the constitution and BOR.

      We have those among us that think the American gun owner is granted the privilege to own by the state, but that’s why we are vigilant and not open to compromise on our rights.

    3. avatar barnslayer says:

      Interesting username Diorama. Are you a fellow 1/35th enthusiast?

  6. avatar gloomhound says:

    Why no psych evals to use a twitter account?

  7. avatar Soccerchainsaw says:

    To ST’s point that anti’s consider us “ticking time bombs”, in a way we think the same thing about the anti’s. That’s one reason we prepare the way we do. While reacting to criminal activity may be more likely, we are also preparing for the SHTF situation that may come. We don’t know exactly what will trigger it, but when the SHTF the anti’s will join the mob demanding what we have.

    I remember a corporate training exercise that put us in teams and gave us a scenario to work through as a team to come up with the best solution. It was supposed to show how a team could come up with a better solution than an individual. We were supposed to prioritize the importance of various supplies and tools. By the end it was clear to me that if I were in that situation with those people my 1st priority should be to commandeer the gun so as to control the situation and keep the idiots from getting everyone dead. So the anti’s out there probably think I shouldn’t be anywhere near a gun…..

  8. avatar Anonymous says:

    Gun grabbers think all gun owners are some sort of variation on this theme.

    And gun owners seem to think that all anti-gunners are some sort of variation of Communists or Nazis.

    Just read the comments on this web site: being anti-2nd amendment == closet totalitarian, but hating the rest of the Bill of Rights does not disqualify one from being an advocate of freedom and paragon of liberty.

    If Hitler 2.0 or Stalin 2.0 promise American gun owners that they could keep their guns, a lot of American gun owners would gladly join the Nazi 2.0 or Communist 2.0 Party.

    Not that this hypocrisy is limited to the Right. I could (and do) say the same thing about liberals and their pet causes; e.g., if Hitler 2.0 or Stalin 2.0 are pro-abortion, a lot of Donkeyrats will join the Nazi 2.0 or Communist 2.0 Party.

    Human beings have an amazing ability to rationalize their beliefs.

  9. avatar tdiinva says:

    There are two models of criminal behavior. The rational actor theory and the random actor theory. Supporters of the right to self defense believe in the first theory while self defense opponents are committed ot the second theory. That’s why we focus on criminal behavior and they focus on the aberrant behavior of spree shooters. There is a valid test to show which theory is correct and that is the ratio of spree shooter homicides to total homicides. I will leave the calculation of that ratio to the reader as an exercise.

  10. avatar bontai Joe says:

    Yep, the storm wasn’t all that terrifying, it is the behavour of some of the people that has me a little anxious. I’m glad to see that gas stations in NJ are coming back on line, and that power is being restored to some areas, although I have heard of some folks getting estimates of electricity restoration as late as Thanksgiving in my area. Lots of damage from falling trees.

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