The Sandy Hook School Massacre
The tragedy at Sandy Hook school in Newtown, Connecticut, where a lone gunman slaughtered 20 children and 7 adults, demands action - effective action. The burning question is how to prevent such slaughter in the future, without the law of unintended consequences making things worse.

The crucial question is obvious: What caused so many deaths? The enormous number is actual the unintended consequence of the existing law: - it disarms citizens in and around schools, another egregious example of government failure. Teachers and administrators at Sandy Hook were legally denied the right to carry guns, so they had no means to protect themselves.

As the New Scientist says: In the US, knee-jerk positions for or against gun control have until now won out over careful consideration of the evidence. In memory of the children who died at Newtown, it is time to put these divisions aside and begin a sensible, meaningful discussion about how to solve a terrible and complex problem.*

A Solution without Unintended Consequences
The USA needs a solution without such unintended consequences. Yet gun-control advocates want ever more laws making it ever more difficult for school staff to protect themselves and their students. Let's look at the big picture:

  • What gun policies have been tested and proven across the world?
  • Would a wholesale policy of banning guns work for the entire USA?
  • Could encouraging each state to create their own solution allow comparison to highlight the difference in effectiveness?
  • How well does eliminating guns actually work elsewhere in the world?

Eliminate All Forms of Oppression
Beware oppressive people. You want what you want, and you want the freedom to do that. The trouble is criminals want the same. They decide that they want what you have - your possessions. Criminals believe it's unfair that you should have it when they don't, so the way to remedy this unfairness is to take it from you, by force if necessary.

Beware oppressive governments. What are the consequences of believing a politician who aims to put ever more power into the hands of government? Remember that Nazi German dictator Adolf Hitler (Nazi: NAtional soZIalismus, National Socialism party) was elected and re-elected by people who ignored his behavior and instead believed his eloquent spin. As Hitler famously said, "What good fortune for those in power that people do not think."

Does banning guns eliminate violence? Now that the UK government has a near-total ban on guns, the British Telegraph newspaper reports that: The United Kingdom is the violent crime capital of Europe and has one of the highest rates of violence in the world, worse even than America, according to the European Commission ... The total number of violent offenses recorded compared to population is higher than any other country in Europe, as well as America, Canada, Australia and South Africa.**

The simplistic answer to the problem is just to ban all guns. But, since no law is 100% effective, isn't this misleading? Criminals by definition don't obey the law. The UK experience from banning guns demonstrates that simple answers to complex problems rarely work. In contrast, Switzerland has automatic weapons above every fireplace, and is one of the safest countries in the world.

Do you have the right to protect yourself?
Should governments stop their citizens protecting themselves from criminals? Yet to ask this question is to ignore the cause of the problem: If the government did the job of protecting its citizens properly, the people would have less need of guns to protect themselves.

The need to do so is another egregious demonstration of Government Failure - the failure of US governments to do their fundamental job of protecting their citizens effectively. Governments have arrogated so many tasks that they seem to be incapable of doing any of them properly. This insight suggests the solution to government failure: Rather than trying to do even more, should governments do less?

The long-term answer needs to carefully take these and many other different viewpoints into consideration. All the questions listed above need answers. What does experience show to be effective in other countries around the world? What does not work? What will?

* The quote from the New Scientist is at:

** The quote from the Telegraph is at:

© Copyright worldwide Cris Baker, All rights reserved. Republishing welcomed under Creative Commons noncommercial no derivatives license preserving all links intact, so please +1 and share this widely!

Food for Thought
"You cannot build character and courage by taking away man's initiative and independence. You cannot help men permanently by doing for them what they could and should do for themselves."

- Rev William JH Boetcker, 1873-1962, renown orator, American spiritual leader, author of The Ten Cannots that emphasizes individual freedom and responsibility

Author's Bio: 

Cris Baker has much practice in overcoming adversity, he's been screwing things up for years! Why suffer the consequences of your own mistakes? Now you can benefit from real knowledge, crucial know-how gained from his vast experience with extensive pain and suffering!

Explore your right to protect yourself, avoid being manipulated by others, discover how to overcome your self sabotage, and improve your enjoyment of life!