Common wisdom has it that within the week, I'll shoot up my school. Are you ready to pick up the Seven Day Challenge with me?
I knew you were.
On a more serious note I am, as some of you know, a proponent of a right to keep and arm bears.
This apparently is not a popular view right now as I found out the other week in what ended up a rather heated discussion. I won't go into my arguments (when every second counts, the police are just minutes away, getting granny on equal footing with the 16st hooligan, etc. — and yes, I'm also a proponent of women learning krav maga) in depth — they're not new; if you're not convinced by now, you probably won't be without a cataclysmic event that I wouldn't wish on you. Be that as it may, the interesting point of the conversation was that both sides' arguments hinged on positing morally suspect masses:
anti "carry concealed" laws: Think of all the crazy people! (Who would then also have guns, on top of the hardcore criminals who already do.)
pro "carry concealed" laws: Think of all the crazy people! (Who we need to be able to defend ourselves against.)
In the end, we were all hoping for some utopian Lala-Land were guns are no longer needed; it's just a question of, Do you trust the state/police to protect you appropriately until then? When the self-defense articles in the criminal code explicitly suggest that sometimes, your safety may be up to you?²
Here's the thing: aside from the question whether people who've never been in some assault/rape/robbery/… situation shouldn't STFU about things they know nothing about, doesn't common fairness imply that if it's a draw (haha), argument-wise, they lose? After all, "pro gun" is about more rights, "anti gun" is about fewer rights. Shouldn't you have to present a very tight argument when making the case for less freedom?
In other news, my pacifist parents dropped in at my Berlin, Germany HQ for the first time the other week. They were in the Big City for nary an hour before a drug raid (plainclothes cop busting dealer) happened within arm's reach from them. It was pretty hilarious. It was hilarious because they never were in any real danger, and it is mildly funny in a bittersweet way because discussing real dangers often does not get through to people, whereas a semi-flashy and unexpected situation that is, in fact, quite safe may do the trick.
* Note if you will that for a snap shot, I was rather lucky with how the composition came out. : )
* Rejected titles: Does your feminism have teeth? — alluding to the fact that feminism that relies on the kindness of strangers is somewhat impotent —, and Bad people with good aims.
¹ Yes, the gun is unloaded. And if you look closely, you'll see that I in fact show that no round is chambered. So yeah, epic fail at that "pseudo-tough poser" deal, but I'm a stout believer in not stupidly waving your piece around. Take out the tool, do your shooting, then put the tool away.
² I'm all for the Lala-Land. I'm all for solving conflicts peacefully. I just see that when the mob goes bananas, like in the Parisien banlieue, they often aren't after a peaceful solution. What's more, they often don't even go after those they deem responsible, but set their own neighborhood on fire instead. Guys, I'm all for addressing your cause. I'm not for becoming a random victim of your cause.
The thing is, the way the Germans are practicing deploying their army in the interior makes me lose faith in their faith in peaceful solutions; it looks more like practicing for the day when the unwholesome coupling of dignity and employment has driven a sufficient number of people close to or over the edge.
On a semi-related note, this is almost the poster case for gun-based self-defense:
It's also the sister of one of my favorite colleagues surviving.
SAS interprets the Second Amendment as recognizing the pre-existing natural right of individuals to bear arms as tools of self defense, and promotes gun safety and marksmanship among their members. They focus on community outreach, women's firearm shoots, women's personal safety training, and political advocacy. Citing FBI crime statistics, they assert firearms are the only reasonable means of self-protection, especially for women, people of short stature, people with disabilities, and the elderly.
The group's slogan is "Self defense is a basic human right."