Gun Control: Stupid is Easy; Thinking is Hard


If I recall my high school Latin correctly, “Si Hoc Ergo Iste” is translated as: “If this, then that.” In other words if this is true, then that [which is something else] must also be true. Where the idea of stupidity comes in, is where a statement is declared but the stupid simply stop short by not applying the same line of reasoning to a similar situation. They fail to do so because critical thinking is difficult at best and arduously and painfully taxing at worst. In fact, it is to be expected that stupidity would be far more common than critical thinking. Now lest you think I am being harsh by using the word stupid, notice what Albert Einstein said about human stupidity: “”Only two things are infinite, the universe and human stupidity, and I’m not sure about the former.”

To my point: I have received, on numerous occasions or have heard many times, the following assertion [or some variation thereof]: “Guns don’t kill people. People kill people.” As a gun owner myself, I find the statement to be offensive to my own sense of intellect. This is often the response many gun advocates present when attempting to explain their resistance to various gun-control measures. The statement is at best witty but as Voltaire stated, “A witty statement proves nothing.” Or the gun statement is at worst and most certainly, damn stupid.

More exactly, of course, guns in and of themselves do not kill people. But people use guns to kill people! That is like saying, “Arsenic does not kill people” — unless you consume it, stupid!! So you keep it out of the reach of children. If you do not, you could be charged with neglect or abuse. No court would accept your defense in not keeping arsenic away from your children if you stated, “Arsenic does not kill people; people kill people [or themselves].”

But getting back to my Latin, si hoc ergo iste. If guns don’t kill people then logically, nuclear weapons don’t kill people. Yet, the United States and several other nations do not want Iran to have nuclear weapons. What would any person with at least some semblance of intelligence think if Iran asserted its right to have nuclear weapons by saying: “Nuclear weapons don’t kill people; people kill people.” Do you think the NRA and its followers in Congress would accept that argument? Yes, but only if they were stupid. But somehow when it comes to guns, that argument seems to have weight even though it is just as stupid. Furthermore, if the above statement about guns not killing people is true, then why not let the mentally ill and criminals have guns? After all, “guns don’t kill people.”

The statement that guns don’t kill people is mindless and insulting to anybody who has at least two cents worth of intellect. Yes, it is a witty statement — easy to recite and requires no thought. It is something the stupid can repeat while thinking they sound profound. No wonder it is oft repeated.

To be sure, there are better arguments one can pose in opposition to gun control legislation [whether the arguments can withstand rigorous scrutiny is another matter] but using the above argument, I would think, should be insulting even to the most ardent gun advocate — unless the advocate is stupid.

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Published in: on December 20, 2015 at 8:59 PM  Leave a Comment  
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