Which Shall We Treat, the Problem, or Symptoms?

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“One Voluntaryist’s Perspective” is an original bi-weekly column appearing every other Monday at Everything-Voluntary.com, by the founder and editor Skyler J. Collins. Archived columns can be found here. OVP-only RSS feed available here.

Voluntaryists are not pacifists, though they do encourage strategic pacifism on many fronts. In regards to the private ownership of weapons (from clubs to firearms), it is the perspective of this voluntaryist that such a “right,” that is, the right to self-defense by any advantageous means possible, precedes all state constitutions, their amendments, and ultimately the state itself. Likewise, the right to say anything one wants to say, be it friendly, libelous, slanderous, or seditious, so long as one has permission of the owner on whose property they are standing when they say it (or write it), precedes the state. Having said that, what’s all this talk about gun control and deporting Piers Morgan?

The Gun Control Debate

For decades, libertarian commentators have written thousands and thousands of words extolling the evils of the state restricting or prohibiting the private ownership of firearms. One book in particular argued quite persuasively (and empirically) on the fact that “more guns” equals “less crime” in society. Basically, “the people” have a right to defend themselves with firearms from both private and public criminals. Many a despot first disarmed their citizenry in order to carry out more effectively their butchery. Hitler was pro-gun control. That should tell you all you need to know about the “virtues” of gun control.

Why the debate now? Actually, the debate has never really gone away. With every psychopath that shoots up a school or a mall, the debate is once again given mainstream attention. Both media pundits and opportunistic politicians seek to bolster their popularity by weighing in on the debate, usually on the side of the proponents of gun control. Is it any wonder that the state and it’s goons would only want guns in the hands of the state? Unfortunately, the attention they’re getting is distracting everyone from the real issues. Why should anyone want to shoot up a school and murder innocent little children? What is it about such a psychopath’s history that would motivate him to do that? Was he beaten as a child? Was he spanked? Often? Was his mind deprived of it’s much needed freedom of inquiry? Was he drugged? Is he on legal drugs now? In other words, the problem isn’t that he’s using a gun to commit his crimes (a knife was recently used the same way), the problem is his desire to kill innocent people. The gun control debate can’t answer that. But maybe the schooling, drugging-kids, spanking, and mental health debates can.

The Piers Morgan Debate

CNN news anchor and British national Piers Morgan has been the subject of a WhiteHouse.gov petition calling for his deportation. His crime? Expressing his negative view on the 2nd Amendment to the U.S. Constitution. His real crime? Nothing. Clearly he has a right to say whatever he wants. The idea that he should be deported for it is idiotic. No, he should not be forcefully deported, but nor should his views be entertained. If you don’t like what he says, turn him off. It’s that simple. To resort to force makes you no better than those who seek to forcefully deprive you of your firearms. Put him out of business. That’s the peaceful and nonviolent solution to the problem of pro-gun control celebrities (or anyone else, for that matter).

Final Thoughts

The real issues here are much more serious than whether or not members of society have a right to own firearms. They have to do with how we raise our children, how we take care of each other, the state’s myriad interventions in the economy, in health-care, in the pharmaceutical industry, in education, and in every other area of importance in society. Would atrocities like the Sandy Hook Elementary School massacre be committed in a free society? Maybe. Maybe not. But I’m confident that if it had, we’d be treating the problem, and not the symptoms.

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Skyler J. Collins (Editor)

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Founder and editor of Everything-Voluntary.com, Skyler is a husband and unschooling father of three beautiful children. His writings include the column series “One Voluntaryist’s Perspective” and “One Improved Unit,” and blog series “Two Cents” and “Items of Note.” Skyler also wrote the books No Hitting! and Toward a Free Society, and edited the books Everything Voluntary and Unschooling Dads. You can hear Skyler chatting away on the official Everything-Voluntary.com podcast.

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