guns in safe
Dan Z for TTAG
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Fighting the never-ending battle against ever-more gun control laws is a matter of winning hearts and minds.

[A] huge segment of the American population…is growing increasingly alienated from a set of visceral understandings that are foundational to our worldview and our way of life. For the most part, people who think gun control might be a good idea aren’t sinister fascists, they’re not “hopeless liberals”, and they’re not die-hard communists. They are well meaning sentimentalists who haven’t thought things through at a deep level, and they’re surprisingly open to earnest dialogue.

Yes, there is a political battle to be fought on the narrow issue of gun control. But more importantly, we have an opportunity right now to open the hearts and minds of our friends, neighbors, and relatives to a broader perspective while people are asking some important questions.

At the deepest most personal level, a firearm represents the power over life and death. For a society that blissfully turns a blind eye to the dead animal on its plate, that is a very frightening thing. It feels most comfortable to cede the responsibility over life and death to the government (in the person of policemen and soldiers), even though ceding that responsibility makes us less safe in the end and – more disturbingly – strips us of a basic human dignity.

The choice to take up arms represents acceptance of ultimate personal responsibility. If you understand this, if you live this, you have it in your power to make the world a better place when you share your understanding with others. Mature people of good faith who viscerally understand their place in the world build communities that are rooted in a goodness that transcends political regime.

– Evan in a post at

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  1. Most people today are ruled by emotions.common sense, logic and reason have gone down the toilet

  2. Lost me at “For a society that blissfully turns a blind eye to the dead animal on its plate”.

    10,000 plus years of meat eating made humans what we are today.

    • Yes, but we don’t see it happen. Most people never see an animal die. We don’t see death. The butcher doesn’t even do it. He just cuts it up, covers it in plastic. Kids see animals as cute, not dinner. (I’m talking city/suburban people.)

      • I’ve lost count of how many gophers, ground squirrels, rabbits, raccoons, birds, etc. I’ve personally shot over my lifetime. Never do it for fun or “sport”. Only if they encroach on my property and refuse to be deterred from eating from my garden – or in the case of raccoons, being destructive. Some will get the hint and skedaddle when I attempt to shoo them away, but some do not and return as soon as I disappear from their sight. So I send them to the hereafter in a humane way, which means a quick head shot with the ‘ol .22.

        No, I’ve never hunted elk or moose, though I would have no problem with it if I ever had to.

        Hope I never, ever have to shoot a 2-legged intruder.

      • Carrots are bad for rabbits. Too much sugar. They should only be given as a treat, not as a regular part of their diet.

    • Look there is nothing wrong with eating meat. But the industry as we know it is disgusting and cruel. Plain and simple. It needs to change.

  3. Meh the majority support some gun control. even the majority of gun owners. I meet fudds all the time. You refute one aspect of it and the goal post moves to different gun control.

    It’s like psychics. I show several examples of them being debunked and they tell me “Well yeah some people lie about being psychics not mine though.” It doesn’t really matter. I can’t debunk each and every psychic out there because it would be impossible to meet them all or put the time into it.

    People are frustrating. I can’t spend every hour of every day explaining why each individual piece of gun control is wrong to millions of people. How ever that is what is often required. Of course there are exceptions to that. (I’m super tired so if I am not making any sense just ignore me)

    • Biatec,

      Your comment makes perfect sense to me.

      You are simply stating a fundamental principle with slightly different words and examples. That principle: a LOT of people operate on emotion, fantasy, and their whimsical notion of virtue. And the only way that you can ever build a coalition with such people is if your message resonates with them on an emotional and “virtuous” level.

      That principle is extremely problematic for several reasons:
      (1) We cannot build a coalition with a person/s who requires an emotional appeal that directly contradicts our objective.
      (2) We have no way of knowing which emotional or virtuous appeal may resonate with any given person/s.
      (3) Even if we found an emotional or virtuous appeal that resonated with a given person/s, their emotions and whimsical notion of virtue can suddenly change, our message no longer resonates with him/her/them, and we lose our coalition.

      We have to stop treating this like we are dealing with reasonable, stable, informed, and well-grounded people. We are not.

      We do NOT spend ginormous amounts of resources trying to win the hearts and minds of thugs, rapists, and murderers. We simply lock them up or put them down when they attempt to violate us. We should apply the same mindset and actions to gun-grabbers and their agents/proxies when they attempt to violate us.

    • I got into it with my boss because he just would not shut up about this. He says things that should never be said in the work place, and when he brought up guns, even though he hunts and owns guns, I just had enough. He overheard me telling a coworker/friend about my AR and some other issues about home defense and self defense that we both agreed on, and he came out of the wood works chiming in like he always does. The only reason it got brought up at all was because the coworker straight up asked me for advice on a conceal carry, and only because they saw me at a range one day and we just clicked from there… Anyways, boss pissed me off. I try to be very tactful with him and most the times just walk away or keep my mouth shut, but that day… that day I had enough. He is a FUDD from hell. One thing is for sure: He will never bring the subject up around me again, or chime in on a convo like that. There have even been times since that he has visually shut himself the fuck up mid sentence. It’s great. I know he is the kind of person you could never convince the benefits of owning “military style” weapons, and it truly is a lost battle unless SHTF then it could possibly change, but I certainly feel like I won a battle of some sorts 😉

      I am easy to get along with too. I can talk to my boss all day about fishing, and other random shit. But some things… a leader should never bring up in the workplace. There are plenty of leaders I have seen eye to eye on tons of things, and the same goes for when I was a leader in the military with my soldiers. Some, you can just bullshit with on everything, and others, you need to be very careful the subject matter you discuss around them. Like I said, my current boss, is just the kind you only want to have simple conversations with. Very sheltered and just an all around awkward guy to be around.

  4. “For the most part, people who think gun control might be a good idea aren’t sinister fascists, they’re not “hopeless liberals”, and they’re not die-hard communists. ”

    You are totally WRONG. They ARE all these things and worse, they are cowards.

    • The soccer mom who is afraid her son/daughter won’t come back from school without GSWs is a “sinister fascist”?

      Wow. Dat logic. Throw that shade there buddy because it’s working so bloody well.

      There are seven basic human emotions. Five are negative. Associating guns with the negative emotions, and helping others to make that association, furthers gun control. The antis do that and posts like yours do to.

      Therefore, you must be an anti. Clearly you’re not just misguided in your approach to other people. No, you’re an anti. A cowardly communistic sinister fascist.

      See how that works?

  5. This is why it’s important to take a liberal shooting. Let them shoot and see what being a responsible gun owner is all about.

    • And thats the problem. This all or nothing mentality has us defending even the irresponsible ones including all those facebook, instagram, and youtube idiots that cant even follow the fundamental safety rules let alone show respect for this right.

      Unless some middle ground is reached, I fear that “nothing” is going to be what’s left (no pun intended)

        • That is not for me to decide, I am not an expert on legislation. However, I am sceptical that all of the proposals on the table are nothing more than a “gateway” bill with the ultimate goal of changing the constitution. I think those that are most opposed to all proposals regarding firearms are those who would lose the most profits.

      • “Middle ground”???

        Are you prepared to compromise some of you (and by extension, our) rights? Are you okay with reaching this fabled middle ground and giving up 20% of your rights today so that the shrill anti-gunners will stop yelling? And when they come back next week, will you give them the 20% of what you have left, as they will expect? And another 20% next month?

        This is exactly what’s been happening since 1934. You must work for the NRA.

        • Not at all, not a fan of them right now. This article is about “Ultimate Personal Responsibility” and yet there are many out there who do not respect or abuse the rights that we (at least still in some states) enjoy. I believe those proposing control measures are trying to target those individuals and unfortunately we get caught in the middle. I’d love to hear ideas on getting them out of the hands of those who dont deserve the right to even touch a firearm in my opinion, otherwise it is just up to those officials who probably never handled one in their lives, understand the difference between us and those who do not respect the ultimate personal responsibility. That is what I mean by middle ground.

        • “I’d love to hear ideas on getting them out of the hands of those who dont deserve the right to even touch a firearm in my opinion…”

          That’s the problem right there. You’re subjecting a person’s right to the litmus test of your opinion. That’s exactly what politicians do, and what 2A supporters complain about.

          You and I will not get them out of anyone’s hands, period. All these attempts at pre-emptively blocking or removing from certain people is what’s resulting in all the rest of us being subjected to unconstitutional and intrusive tactics such as background checks, waiting periods, ERPO confiscations, etc. The only way to truly mitigate crime is to allow all citizens to be armed as they deem necessary, which will either (1) deter would-be criminals from acting on their impulses for fear of their own lives or (2) result in them being taken down/out by others in the area and removing the threat immediately before further harm can be committed.

        • “Are you prepared to compromise some of you (and by extension, our) rights?”

          That’s not what he said and nothing he says implies that’s the message you should take from his post. If you inferred that from reading his post then you did so strictly because you wanted to.

        • @strych9,

          I don’t know what text you were reading, but that’s exactly what he was alluding to. When he suggested that middle ground must be reached, how did you surmise that he didn’t mean “middle ground”?

      • Believe me, we are nowhere near “all” when it comes to the right to keep and bear arms. In some places like California and my home state Illinois we are actually much closer to “nothing”.

        There is no middle ground. We are way past it and sliding towards “nothing” every year.

  6. The problem with Libertarians Liberals and the Left is they really don’t believe in personal responsibility. The perfer the Welfare Industrial Complex and its “gun free zone” public housing projects. They hate the church or synagogue that holds people to account for their misdeeds. When this country had more religion it also had a smaller prison population.

    Or just take the religion out of the equation. “Back in the day” you could shoot criminals dead with no questions asked. Now you have to have lawyers and a two year court trial.

    • What does religion have to do with that? The death penalty is biblically supported, and was a mainstay for murderers for millennia until only a few decades ago. It’s our Lefties among us who clamor for compassion for the poor misunderstood criminals who commit horrific acts against their neighbors.

      • “What does religion have to do with that?”
        Because religion imposes self control on its believers. In general non believers don’t believe in self control. They want a very large government to control the population.
        Say what you want about religion. The bottom line is, It imposes self control. All levels of government was smaller. At least is was over one hundred years ago.

        • Okay, that at least clarifies it for me, as your previous statement appears to suggest otherwise. Thx for that.

          Yes, religion/faith does generally bring about a society that practices self control. And I certainly prefer a small community with local government than any metro area. As a community grows larger, the powers that be assume more control over their constituents, as those constituents in turn become less connected with the civics that govern them.

      • That’s the natural consequence of insulating oneself in an artificial environment like a city. The loss of knowledge about the way things really are turn people into foolish clowns, who say things like: “Why does that man need to hunt? Why doesn’t he get his meat in the store where no animals were harmed?”
        So insulated from the world, because they’ve been paying someone else to do their killing for them for so long, they forget that their burgers were alive once. Yeah, the words; “clownish fool” fits them pretty well.

        • Yep, as foolish as people saying ‘my vaccines won’t work unless you get vaccinated too’. Knute, you’ve proven that even troll-bot profiles can post accurate things from time to time.

        • That’s rich, pg2/Vlad. You talking about troll-bots and slamming Knute(ken) about it.

        • “Yep, as foolish as people saying ‘my vaccines won’t work unless you get vaccinated too’.”

          One-trick-pony pg2 at it again.

          Do you *ever* talk about guns, dude?

    • Libertarians prefer gun-free zones and welfare-states? Where do you come up with this stuff?

      • Show me where the Libertarians publicly support the PRIVATE church welfare support system? Instead of the government Welfare Industrial Complex? The church /synagogue imposes self control on it members. Libertarians use to believe in holding people accountable for doing, IN THEIR OWN WORDS, stupid behavior.

        Like debilitating drug use.

        Now they are nonjudgmental. They are incapable of saying anything negative about smoking dope or any other substance.

    • I understand that three ‘L’s sound better than two, but you should look closer into that whole libertarian thing. If there is someone who prefers small government and high personal responsibility it’s libertarians. (Not necessarily Libertarians.)

      • Send me a Link to a Libertarian who says smoking dope is stupid. I know they want it legal. Show me where they say it’s a stupid thing to do.

      • Also send me a Link where the Libertarians say theft is wrong.
        Because they do support Tech companies stealing the content of people like Hickok45. His property was returned. But others have had their property stolen by YouTube, Facebook and others.

  7. “Owning And Using Firearms Demonstrates the Ultimate Personal Responsibility”

    This says it all, there doesn’t even need to be an article…

    • I disagree. I find the whole article to be flawed. Gang bangers, drug dealers, armed robbers, rapists own guns, but I’d hardly call them responsible. Responsible people choose to own guns legally because they already are responsible. They choose to educate themselves and their families about safe and legal practices because they are responsible. They have the responsible attitude to practice that safety. They avoid conflict and yield arguments because they know they carry the awful responsibility of lethal force and know the moral and legal ramifications of its misuse. They don’t whip out their guns and start firing when they get cold fries at McD’s or feel disrespected. Unless a person has a responsible mindset, or is trying to get one, any knowledge you want to impart will be ignored, or they won’t put what they did manage to learn into practice.

      • If more people were shot dead on the spot when they pulled out a gun because they got cold fries, they would do it a lot less.

        Insulation from consequences has been a problem for far too long.

  8. Fighting the never-ending battle against ever-more gun control laws is a matter of winning hearts and minds.

    This strategy is insufficient because we cannot ever win the hearts and minds of some people no matter what we say or do. Our nation’s Founders recognized this unfortunate fact which is why they codified the Second Amendment.

    By all means the First Amendment should be our primary/default strategy to end assaults upon our fundamental, inalienable rights and human dignity. And when the First Amendment fails to end those assaults on our rights and human dignity, the Second Amendment becomes our primary strategy.

    • Must be an oddball or an airsoft. No cylinder latch, and the frame and backstrap are two pieces. Probably an airsoft or pellet gun. Why it needs to be in a gun safe, I have no idea.
      Just to organize all similarly shaped objects together maybe?

      • The pic is credited to Dan Z so I hope he’s trolling about the comments and can enlighten us !

        • I certainly can. That’s no airsoft gun (I don’t own any).

          When my favorite uncle died a few years ago, he left me four revolvers. Three beautiful Smith & Wesson Model 19s from the early 1970s in almost-new condition.

          He also left me the gun you see in the photo: a High Standard Sentinel Deluxe .22 9-shot revolver (R-107). It has a 4″ barrel and a trigger with a pull weight of about 15 lbs (haven’t actually measured it). From the serial number, it was made in 1968.

          Not a bad gun to use for new shooters in single action.

        • Thanks! Since there is no cylinder release how does it open or stay closed, just springs and friction?

  9. When the movie ‘Idiocracy’ was released it was an outlandish farce. It has become more pertinent daily. Gun ownership is a big responsibility but compare the accidental deaths due to poisoning from household chemicals and overdoses from prescription drugs left unsecured. It all boils down to personal responsibility which no one wants to accept, even parents of young children.

  10. Owning And Using Firearms Demonstrates the Ultimate Personal Responsibility…..Really? Dan your not even close on this one. There are many things that can take a life but until you have Children THAT is the Ultimate Personal Responsibility. The so called parents these days are told to leave their cell phone in the back seat so they won’t forget their kids in a hot summer car & kill them….Cuz they will never forget their phone. I was 8 when I was responsible enough to own a gun & 13 when I was going out hunting by myself.

    Responsibility….is all about how you were raised & what your values are !!!

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