Well, I’ve been temporarily blocked at Quora.com for violating their “Be Nice, Be Polite” policy. Can’t post there until October 30. In the mean time, I guess I can still post here!
If you’re unfamiliar, Quora is a site where anybody can ask anything, and anybody who joins up can respond.
Ran across this jewel over there and thought I’d share it. The question asked was, “What will it take to radically change America’s gun culture?” Like there’s only one.
Seems this guy thinks he’s struck upon something original.
Avoiding getting dragged into the gun control debate and attempting to answer your original question, I would say there are at least two options, both of which would be lengthy and difficult in application. First, like cigarettes, the government could embark on a long term effort of making gun ownership and gun use difficult and expensive, while propagandizing against equating guns with generally positive terms such as “liberty” and “freedom”, instead instilling in future generations the association of guns with negatives such as “murder” and “anti-social”. Realizing that a goodly number of people holding social and political power in the US are themselves gun nuts, you can imagine this is a remote possibility. Equally problematic is the idea of revolutionary change in the US which removes all notions of American exceptionalism, militarism and conservative ideology from popular thought.
Summing up, the two paths I see involve public “shaming” of gun people in the same manner as smokers are publically(sic) shamed today, or the active suppression of what I think are really defining characteristics of America: conservative ideology, religious ideology, fierce individualism, a tendency towards conspiracy theory, a preference for violence as a solution to social and individual problems, and mistrust of government. As you might guess, I’m not optimistic.
As Instapundit once said, “It’s pretty irritating, being shamed by people who have none themselves.”
He apparently doesn’t realize that his prescription is precisely how it was done in the UK. I have to wonder, though, at what form his “active suppression” would take. What’s most interesting to me however, is what he himself describes as the “really defining characteristics of America,”
- Conservative ideology
- Religious ideology
- Fierce individualism
- Mistrust of government
You begin to understand Barack Obama’s appeal to people like him when Obama promised to fundamentally transform the United States of America.
They’re ashamed of it. They hate it.
So yeah, I do think they’re un-American. They admit it themselves.