When you boil the gun arguments down, it seems to me that it comes to this:
Those on the right are afraid of totalitarianism/socialism/communism. If you put restrictions on guns, it will be a slippery slope that will lead to the government having total control and people not being able to defend themselves (on a small scale, with the badies with guns on the street or in our schools, and on a larger scale, from the potential corruption of rule of government). Taking away any gun rights at all feels like one step closer to burning the second amendment. They see countries whose citizens were disarmed and then were completely helpless against evil, totalitarian leaders, and they don’t want that here.
Those on the left are afraid of anarchy. They are seeing too much freedom to own too many needlessly high powered weapons that weren’t even around when the second amendment was written in the first place. They don’t believe this is what the second amendment was intended to provide for and they feel we are on a different slippery slope, with a trajectory straight into total chaos and needless death. They look at other countries, who have strict gun laws, and don’t see the problems on the scale that we have in America with gun violence. They believe citizens do not need to own guns, to the extent that they can own them now.
Both don’t want to see needless death, but they are on polar opposite sides from each other, as far as how to deal with the problems we face.
There is an almighty divide of patriotism, pride and passion between them.
Both feel so strongly about their positions that they wind up calling those on the other side awful names and even damaging or destroying relationships because of it.
Both sides, whether they realize it or not, have one thing in common. Both reactions and both ideologies boil down to fear. Fear is the driver behind all of this. Both want to protect people from harm. Both fear the harm. But both have different thoughts on how that protection can and should happen.
I teach my children that when they have an argument, they need to come together and work things out. Each side needs to give a little and come to a compromise that will help to resolve the issue, instead of continuing to tear each other apart by refusing anything the other has to say and by not listening to anything aside from their own opinions.
If our kids can do it, we can do it too….
I’m asking our society in general, right now, how do we come together so that we can fix the fear that we all share and want to be rid of so passionately?
That’s the first step.
One thing I know. This infighting is not doing anyone any good. It is tearing us further apart and if we don’t stop, it will rip our society in half.
It will take us working together to solve this issue.
Will you take the first step toward the other side, in the name of the common desire for safety, or will you stand on your high ground and dig your heels deeper into your own ideals and then get nothing done except creating more distrust and pain between the two sides?
The thing is, if you dig your heels in, you won’t be able to see the living and breathing human beings on the other side of the chasm we have all created for ourselves. You are too far away from them to hear their hearts. You assume they are stupid or traitors for believing as they do, but you won’t get close enough to them to get into their skin and to read the story they have lived, through their eyes, instead of your own.
How do we do it? How do we take those first steps?
(By Christi Brown)