ISSUES
Tai-Chi Tu
Tai-Chi Tu

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Issue 6:

Guns





"A gun is a tool Marian,
no better or no worse than any other tool,
an axe, a shovel or anything else.
A gun is as good or as bad as the man using it.
Remember that.”


The character Shane from the classic American Western movie "Shane" 1





“…from my cold, dead hands.” 2


Charlton Heston





"If we are afraid to defend our freedoms,
perhaps, we didn't deserve them..."





[This essay is, in no way, an endorsement of the NRA 3 , or of any groups whatsoever; it is an expression of my own opinions, conceived in my study of human psychology and human history, from ancient times to the present. I have seen how history tends to repeat itself, even though sweet sounding words can make people believe the opposite. Our society, and the organizations it has bred, have created a climate where Shane's and Charlton Heston’s words (above) are important for all of us, not because of any ideology, but because we are a people conceived in diversity, and the absence of ideology. It is the current destruction and distortions of love that makes the threat of violent action the only means now available to us to save us from ourselves – just as Julius Caesar and his legions kept the Roman Republic alive! If we would ever, finally, rid ourselves of the killings and atrocities our societies present us with today, we must continue to keep this threat of violence, that unfortunately, today, keeps a free people free! 4 ]



Let’s get something straight, from the very beginning: GUNS DON’T KILL PEOPLE – PEOPLE DO.

Inanimate objects are not the reason people are killing other people. They have no minds, or motives within those absent minds, to direct them to aim the gun, or pull the trigger. All the troubles in our societies today, begin and end, with PEOPLE! In fact, it is the armies of countries, that do the most killing, in wars today, so if we want to disarm, why aren’t we disarming the armies of those countries? Or, why are we still giving so much aid to other countries to buy arms (especially, when we cannot even afford to pay for the medical costs of our own citizens)?

If you say that the availability of arms, makes killing more likely, then why haven’t we stopped the sale of tobacco – a poison, that has killed and maimed more people then all the guns and wars put together – a poison that has left whole generations of invalids, and, as a result, driven the costs of medicine sky high; a poison that has no beneficial effect whatsoever, except to make its sellers rich? Or, how about cars or trucks, for that matter; after all, if one wants to kill a large number of people, just aim your car or van at a group, and mow them down; it’s that easy! 5 On 9/11/2001 they flew an airplane into a building, are we going to ban airplanes too?

There are thousands of objects that hold the potential of killing people, if used in a way to facilitate that potential. The cause of all murders begin and end in a human mind, and that mind holds the culpability for the actions it initiates and carries out.

Let’s stop the hypocrisy; as long as we have a society that isolates, and abandons many of its citizens, yet, at the same time, makes others into kings that buy and sell other people, there will be security for no one. As long as we look to charity, to make up for all the harm our citizens are now suffering, and all the pain they are now feeling, none of us will feel safe. As long as our religions divide us with dogmas that have transformed love into a type of judgment that contains conditions and provisos, instead of welcoming all with open arms, just because they are fellow human beings, we can never even be happy, let alone feel secure.

We can ban guns, then knives, then tools, cars and trucks and even fertilizer and ammonia, but the people, who want to get even with this world, will find a way to do it. So, lets look where the real blame lies – not even in the motives of those sick people – but in the society that created those motives. A sick society, that has forgotten just what society really is; that has forgotten what the human in humanity means. A society that has changed the golden rule into the golden farce, where its citizens will sell their souls for a buck, and don’t give a damn about anybody, not even themselves anymore. A society where trust no longer exists, and hope has become a tragedy for most, instead of the thing that holds out opportunity for all.

But even more, there are very important reasons to keep this society with its guns – and one of those reasons stems from all the problems I have mentioned above, a painful, yet tragic reason – that is very important, just because of the sickness our society is currently experiencing. And, that reason is the possibility of the loss of all our freedoms. So far, we have only mentioned the sick individuals at the bottom of society, not the sick individuals in high places. The sick, greedy and power hungry individuals, that have enthroned themselves as masters of our people, through the power that government and money has given them. The would be Napoleans, Mussolinis and Hitlers that would take this already sick society, and even make it sicker, in stealing all freedom and choice from it, just as the endless list of tyrants that fill the pages of history, always has.

In a society of laws, which is what we are suppose to be, it is deterrence, which gives the law power; but behind deterrence, is the threat of force; and today that means force of arms, as sick as that may be. And, yes, as sick as this may all sound, the pages of history, and even the constant revolutions in the world today, all show us that there still is a need for an armed citizenry; not to actually hurt, but to present the potential of hurt, if it is indeed needed – the threat of arms, that same deterrence of possible armed uprising by a people, for that same people.

In my wildest dreams, I would not, or could not, ever imagine the government of the United States of America, voting to approve the legitimacy of a motto 6 that more or less says – to be an American, you must believe in God – yet it has happened! In light of this appalling abridgement of the most basic and human of all freedoms, the freedom to believe what you want to believe, or the freedom to think what you like, the government of the United States of America has stooped to the legislation of human thought by elected government officials! So, what is next – armed guards at every door, making you think only what the government tells you to think?

This tells us all, that we must all be ready to protect ourselves from the possibility of the legislation of all our freedoms into myths! If we give up our own private weapons, this will regrettably only accelerate! It is the threat of arms that keep these would be megalomaniacs at bay. It is this same threat that keeps the Supreme Court from legislating away all our freedom. Make no mistake, we are still a people only a few steps away from tyranny, by the very same masters this free society has enthroned by its "bought and paid for" form of freedom.

But there is still an even more pressing need for those arms, on a day to day basis. And, that need is created by the sick society we have built around the God of money; the very same society that I have described in other essays 7 ; and, that need it has created, is survival!

In a society, where jealousy has grown to enormous proportions, and trust has all but disappeared 8 , the threat of home invasions, kidnappings, thievery and even piracy has grown to unprecedented proportions. To survive today, a family must have a quick and readily accessible means to defend themselves, in a split second, so to speak. Why, because the police cannot provide protection from these types of things; and, because there just isn’t enough police to go around; in times of weather catastrophes, like those that happened in New Orleans and New York City. Even further, the riots in the sixties (that Charlton Heston sited) that many cities experienced, and the unstable financial situations of major financial institutions today, which may collapse at any time, combined with the “debt ceiling” problems, make the likelihood of riots and lootings, all the more possible and probable right now! In a society of this kind, we must always be ready to defend our families!

So, how do we cope with a society that is such a threat to itself – yet is so untrustworthy – that we do not even trust it to own the very weapons it needs to protect it from itself?

We begin, by realizing the cause of all the problems; not weapons, but people – us! And we fix the people, by fixing the institutions that have stripped society of the trust it needs to become a society once again. Religions that divide us, instead of uniting us; the economy, that has put us in competition with each other, instead of showing us the way to unity and cooperative harmony. And we value people as people again, by bringing unity back into the definition of society, so people will not feel so isolated and alienated that they must kill themselves and others to show us how bad they feel. And we keep our weapons, to show the haughty that all the money in the world cannot save them if they would try to strip us of our humanity.

I once said, in an essay that detailed the decline of trust in another Republic:

“Caesar failed because he attempted a physical cure for a spiritual malady. His attempt was the only means available for him because of the limited outlook of his civilization. Christianity has broadened our outlook. And yet today we are still attempting to cure a disease of the soul with armies; is it no wonder the disease only worsens?” 9

That “disease of the soul” that Caesar tried to contain has even gotten worse today; it has infected all our societies, and even that same Christianity that was to be its cure, to the point that we will not even have societies, if we ignore it. So we must protect ourselves, to keep our societies, while we try to fix that disease. And that means keeping an armed citizenry, to deter those, who, in their arrogance, would even think of further spreading that disease.

The real solution to this, is creating a society that follows the dictates of what America was always conceived to be: a society of many different people, united in the belief that the expression of this difference is that same expression of the freedom they all enjoy; a responsible freedom, that allows freedom to be tempered by limits that respect humanity, and whatever beliefs humanity believes that does not harm other human beings. Unfortunately, today, we must now use the threat of the force of arms, to, perhaps someday, allow us to live without any arms whatsoever!





[A further note added April 14, 2013]

This issue about “guns” is really not about guns at all, but about an issue that has been around a very long time. Way back, at the very beginning of the Bible, in the book of Genesis, where Adam and Eve are thrown out of the Garden of Eden, this very same issue was under scrutiny. The tree that God told Adam and Eve not to eat from might be considered a “gun”; and Eve’s picking the apple from it, the use of that gun to harm another person. It all boils down to why the human being can’t control his or her free desires from doing something to jeopardize or harm themselves or others. In the Garden of Eden Adam and Eve had no wants or cares of any kind whatsoever – they were literally as close to perfection as humans can ever get – yet they decided to throw all of this away to exert their “free” wills.

Today Democracy has again brought mankind into a situation where something like the Garden of Eden is possible; yet the same idea of “freedom” is getting in our way, as it got in the way of Adam and Eve. Yet we are not scrutinizing the real problem, but once again trying to ignore it, by blaming inanimate objects, and passing laws that only make it even more likely that those bent on hurting others will find other ways to succeed; just as prohibition didn’t “cure” alcohol addictions, but brought about even worse problems, like bootlegging, speakeasies and organized crime syndicates with the power to buy political clout.

For many years now, mind altering drugs like pot (marihuana) and cocaine have been illegal, yet the drug epidemic has not only grown, but has caused a whole law enforcement bureaucracy (with its own economic, social and cultural impact, and corruption) to spring up, which in its turn, only seems to worsen the problem. In fact, a whole country to our South (Mexico) has even been engaged in an economic and cultural revolution of sorts, because of all of this.

But, what all of this really shows, is that making the ownership or use of any potentially harmful agent or thing illegal, in itself, does not address the real problem of why people are using these things, in a way that is harmful to others, and even themselves. The causes of the motives behind the dangerous use of these things, by such increasingly larger segments of our populations, are the real problems with which we never seem to deal.

Why? It is mainly because Big Business, and the government and the political parties, Big Business now owns, has found it exceedingly lucrative to avoid going after the true cause of the misuse of these potentially harmful things. Crime itself has now even become a big part of our economies, and the law enforcement industry and government bureaucracies, which are now a major segment of this economy, would essentially disappear if we truly worked on eliminating the real causes of the problems. So, it is easier to sidetrack us, by attacking the “things” themselves instead of those causes.

And, there is the added benefit that they might even succeed in disarming our citizenry entirely, and thereby make us totally defenseless, so that they can pass whatever laws and “decrees” they want with impunity, without ever even asking our permission; and, in turn, face no risk of revolution, which is what really keeps a free people free.

But for now, Congress has settled for a law to provide some background checks for guns. Background checks for arms sales are not in themselves a bad thing (as the NRA would have you think), but they are, once again, an expensive, and essentially useless cover up of the real problem, just as the illegal drug law enforcement bureaucracy has become; they may be useful in some prevention (because guns, at this point, are still not banned), but they will not solve the problem I mentioned above, just as the all out banning of drugs has not solved the drug use problem, but actually increased it (remember, as I said above, we once banned alcohol, but saw that repealing that ban worked much better). But, what we must ensure is that these background checks do not turn into a type of profiling of gun owners (here, I agree with the NRA).

At the end of the day, the real problem comes down to this: Why can’t our populations be trusted to not cause harm to themselves? Why can’t we get a real hold on what freedom really is, so that ALL of us can feel equal, and realize the dreams we all want to realize?

The answer, which no one wants to hear, is that we have created a society whose most vital societal institutions are based on the attainment of power and wealth at everyone else’s expense. We have, in fact, created societies, which are not societies at all, but populations created to mutually destroy themselves. Our whole history, as a species, has again and again shown this. What began as a trend in the individual, group and the Nation, has now become a global trend throughout the human species.

The cure is to rethink what our priorities in society will be; how we should truly create a society that does not rank its citizens according to the superficialities of power and wealth, but according to merit and true worth. And determine wherein true worth exists. We can start by eliminating as many groups and artificial divisions as possible, and bring this society back into the united whole a society was meant to be. Partisanship is destroying us on every level of our civilization, and that is because our values are values which destroy unity and incite partisanship, by their very nature. A society or even a group which does not trust itself, cannot exist, let alone prosper, yet our governments, religions and economies are all founded on this very thing – a trust of no one but themselves. We have, in turn, lost the very foundation of society – trust – in the very same institutions that society depends on to exist.

We cannot even continue to exist as a species, if we disown the very thing that our species has created to keep our species a viable species – trust – the societal glue that holds together all social undertakings. Harmony and cooperation are the things that a society and even an economy and government must have to function; but they are built on trust, the very thing our values have totally eliminated from all our societies. We cannot have a thing, yet disown it; yet that is exactly what all our societies are doing. As long as we cannot trust each other, and our government seeks the cure for this by further dividing us from each other, through political dogmas, parties and raising up themselves as masters over us, we must continue to guard our rights by keeping the threat of revolutionary action a real option through an armed citizenry. And, while we do this, we must also try to make our leaders understand that they cannot continue to evade the true cause of the atrocities that become ever more prevalent in our society, by deflecting attention to the matter of banning the inanimate instruments used in those situations, instead of focusing on the causes that have caused the human component to act irrationally.

If Adam and Eve, who had found perfection, could not refrain from hurting themselves, do we have any chance at all? I tend to think this was the whole purpose of Genesis in the Bible, namely, to show us that although free will can at times lead us astray, it can also show us that we have the power within us, because of it, to deflect that urge into something useful instead of harmful. The God of Genesis knew this, and showed Adam and Eve that knowledge entails responsibility, and that responsibility always comes with freedom. Society showed us that that responsibility is a shared one, and even greater when it represents ALL. God gave Adam and Eve the freedom to actually be God, but they could only achieve that state by realizing the heavy responsibility this freedom entailed. Today that responsibility is a shared responsibility, and it is trust that holds us all together, yet our religions, governments and economies have destroyed that trust between people; and our media and the new technologies have become worst than guns, in devastating innocent people with rumors and lies. Freedom either resides with ALL, or it does not exist; a freedom that divides, instead of uniting, is not freedom.

If we cannot ALL own weapons, without unjustly causing harm to others, then we do not possess the kind of freedom that Democracy demands; something is seriously wrong, and it is not the ownership, but the effect of society on the owner. And that effect is through society’s major institutions, which have destroyed the unity and trust between its citizens through a false freedom that has abandoned all responsibility, and created a society of MASTERS and SLAVES!




FOOTNOTES

To return to note's origin click the footnote number at left



1 The Movie "Shane" Copyright 1952, 1980, Paramount Pictures.



2 Heston said: "I'll give you my gun when you pry (or take) it from my cold, dead hands."



3 I once belonged to the NRA; but I am afraid that the NRA has only become a lobby for the business side of guns; not the true spirit behind an armed citizenry that a free people, in today’s world, truly needs to keep it free. Guns aren’t about politics or parties or religions or anything, but the survival of ourselves, our families and the freedom that originally made this country. Today, the threat of violence is the only thing that keeps us from losing what little freedom we have left.



4 This essay, in no way, contradicts what I have said about The Military Industrial Complex, that President Eisenhower warned us of; in fact, this is, today, the only defense against this Empire seeking structure that would allow the megalomaniacs to take away all our freedoms, in the ploy of inventing enemies that don’t exist. Today, in the supposedly freest society on earth, we have lost control of our own government, which was created to defend us. This has happened because our free press is no longer free, but taken ransom by the empire builders that would pervert all freedom into its opposite, by addressing ideologies, instead of the individual problems all free peoples face. In introducing these belief systems they distort the concept of freedom, and tie it to whatever ideas they would enforce. Throughout history this same thing has happened, and now even religions have been introduced into the mix, to try to make us believe even God has his own ideology! But the same force drives all of this: the greed and want of unlimited power to surrender the concept of the ALL, to the whims of the FEW! And their methods are division through ideology, stealth, deceit and distortion; as it always has been, throughout history.

[Added January 27, 2013] The current assault weapons ban bill is an attempt to begin the gradual disarmament of all weapons from private citizens. Using the term “Assault Weapons” this bill makes people think that it is a bill to prohibit fully automatic “machine gun” type guns, when, in reality, it targets semi automatic rifles, with actions similar to the popular 1911 Colt pistol; this is a purposeful misdirection, which will then lead to removing all pistols and rifles from the public. So the politicians will have free reign to do whatever they want to do, and legislate away not only our rights, but even our free thoughts as human beings.

Here is the one and only reason for the rights of our citizens to bear arms, the same reason this country was created, in the document that gave us our freedom, The Declaration of Independence:

“... that whenever any form of government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the right of the people to alter or to abolish it, and to institute a new government ... as to them shall seem most likely to effect their safety and happiness."

This gives us that purpose, to always be able to keep a bunch of Masters from ever again ruling over us, as they once did before we took the steps to free ourselves from them. This is what all Americans must continually remember today, as the Masters, once again, try to lead us into surrendering all our freedoms to them.

True, the Monarchies and their inherited hierarchies no longer threaten us. But a new threat has grown out of this greed our prosperity and its money based hierarchies has built through the economy; that, and the organizations of religions, which have warped love into a way to make any hierarchy take on legitimacy with God’s sanction; these are the new threats a society of greedy “True Believers” has grown, to threaten the very existence of society itself! But, the same solution must always be there, when we finally wake up one morning to find all our freedom and prosperity gone (just as Republican Rome did the day Caesar died; and revolutionary France did when Napoleon started his Empire); the same one those founding fathers of this country recognized when they wrote those words above: a people equipped to take back those freedoms by force of arms, if the need arose.



5 Note: On August 3, 2013, at Venice Beach California, the very thing I mentioned here happened. A young Italian woman on her honeymoon was struck and killed, and eleven others wounded, when a car driven by a derelict homeless man went berserk on the boardwalk, striking anyone and anything in its path. This was not a terrorist attack, as the news agencies are trying to hint; or anything, but another case of an alienated individual trying to take out his revenge on society by killing anyone near him.

Once again, this points to the real reasons, our politicians and religious groups are trying to sidestep by blaming inanimate objects. These real reasons (alienation and poverty) are generating anger against society, worst than any terrorists’ group’s revenge – the actual breakdown of our societies themselves!



6 The motto, found on our money: “In God We Trust”; see, also my essay “"In God We Trust"; Which God?.”



7 See my essay Societal Solutions Prelude The Distorted Outlook Of The Criminal Society.”
and my essay: Trust



8 Part of this problem is that because of special third party interests, the courts and medical systems have let the problems of mental illness escalate to a major issue in all American cities today, because of the spurious ruse of depriving people of their freedoms. The freedom to live as vagrants or homeless derelicts is not freedom, but the coarseness of a society that has made medicine into a racket that looks on money as more important than human life. The huge number of simple schizophrenics living on the streets today as homeless vagrants has become a blot on everything American freedom is. Many of these people should be confined to mental hospitals for the rest of their lives. Our criminals get better medical care than our citizens do today!



9 See my essay: "The End of the Roman Republic – The Decline and Fall of Trust"







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Tai-Chi Tu
Tai-Chi Tu

Originally Published:

January 22, 2013

Revised:

July 25, 2014