Guns and Gun Culture Can Be the Sought-After Causes Themselves

Guns and Gun Culture Can Be the Sought After Causes Themselves


I am frustrated with Republicans who to a person avoid responsibility by saying we cannot discuss gun control, but must aid and comfort the victims. They also must examine every aspect of the shooter’s life to find some other cause than the availability of weapons of mass murder. I don’t think the murdered, wounded, and scared to death survivors want us to ignore who and what caused this largest of all US mass murders.


It was clearly caused by those who made massive gun and ammunition possession permissible, uninhibited by record keeping. It was caused by making assault type weapons, which can fire hundreds of yards, legal. It was caused by selling devices that converted semi-automatic weapons into rapid fire weapons. It was caused by the Gun “Culture” in its fullest meaning.


The brain is as imperfect an organ as any other in the human body. Because the brain is such a much more complex organ, it is much easier for it to lose its balance.  If someone has narcolepsy, they would not be allowed to fly an airplane, drive a traiin, or a car. Many drugs can cause depression in some people, and they are warned and monitored for them. Unfortunately, 19,000 suicides a year by guns results from temporarily imperfect mental states, where guns are not forbidden to or removed from such people. Some people who are contemplating suicide due to fates or situations where they are upset about what is happening to them, may want revenge against those who they see as leading a more charmed life. The fact that we make essentially a small nuclear arsenal available to them in the form of massacre guns and ammunition is OUR fault, not that of the mentally-out-of-control people for using it.


Guns are the means that a person becomes a Marvel Superhero with Superpowers. Our current decade-long movie culture is based on such Marvel heroes with super powers. Guns give us the God endowed power of deciding life or death. They greatly enhance the power of the mean and cruel in our society, and not the peace-lovers. Video games with guns give enthusiasts trips into exercising such power. The easy acquisition of actual assault weapons gives dictators and rebels cruel control over large regions. In gun culture, people brag, and exult, in obtaining ever more lethal weapons. The wealthy exult in hunting ever rarer species.


Our American history was based on taking possession of lands and societies, and enforced mining and exploitation of mineral wealth. It enforced slavery, and destruction of the native Americans, throughout both North and South America. The US was expanded from the thirteen colonial states by the westward expansion into Indian lands. The western states were taken from Mexico through wars.


The gun industry owns the NRA, and through monitoring, funding and election threats now controls the Republican party, and intimidates the Democratic party, except where there are determined Democratic states. The NRA has a no-holds-barred maximally aggressive posture to allowing no challenges to unrestricted gun ownership, even ones that a majority of society and even gun owners feel are reasonable, and would increase the public’s safety.


While claiming that it is not the time to do politics, the Republicans tabled a bill that is mainly a direct threat to first responders, which allows the sale of silencers, and of armor piercing bullets.


Is it time to discuss gun control? If not now, when? If not us, who?

About Dennis SILVERMAN

I am a retired Professor of Physics and Astronomy at U C Irvine. For a decade I have been active in learning about energy and the environment, and in lecturing and attending classes at the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute (OLLI) at UC Irvine.
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