The whole subject of gun control baffles me. Of course, those who know me will tell you that this is because my astigmatism is so bad that I can’t hit the broad side of a barn on a clear day – so gun control is at best nominal when the gun is in my hands.
The other type of gun control baffles me too. I grew up in a country (Portugal) at a time when guns were very tightly controlled. I’m not sure what the laws were, but I know that if you were a private citizen and needed a gun for defense, even if you were, say, transporting gold in your car and had received threatening letters, your chances of getting a license to carry were… infinitesimal.
So… My dad taught all my friends to shoot in grandma’s backyard. Guns? Well, I used to be offered guns for sale every time I went into the train station to go home from school. (I guess school made me look like I really wanted a gun. Oh, wait. Yes, it did. Well, you can’t blame me. First, it was an all girls school – I want the idiots who write about peaceful all female planets to go to all girls school, as a girl, for a day – and second this was the school where I studied many things but they were all Marxism.) I never bought any simply because dad had told me that the safest person would be the one I aimed a gun at. (And I knew he was right.) But they were right there. I got offered guns more than I got offered drugs. (Though that might have had something to do with how upset I looked.) This, in Portugal, in the seventies, meant that there were guns available on the street at every moment and for every price.
The idea that government can keep something that everyone knows is available out of the public’s hands is insane. At most they can keep law-abiding (and fearful of trouble) but not out of the hands of criminals and those inclined to mischief.
Which, of course, makes you wonder why it’s such a popular idea over most of the world.
I have a theory about that. The greatest fear the people in charge have – always – is of a peasantry capable of opposing them and imposing their will. (This has been made worse, of course, by the American revolution and our dangerous ideas of a government by the people…)
So while gun control is a really bad idea for keeping the guns out of the hands of bad actors, or preventing crime, or whatever it is, it is a very good idea to keep the civilians from having weapons that could oppose the army or other state-endorsed people. And so, they sell it as saving us from crime, and they keep pushing.
Which is why we shouldn’t let them rolls us. Because it doesn’t do anything we want it to do, but it does render us defenseless in front of the statist leviathan
It is a danger to our life, our liberty and our pursuit of happiness
And though I’m still very bad with guns, my characters use futuristic guns very well in my book Darkship Renegades, just out from Baen, and in the upcoming book – also from Baen – A Few Good Men, the first book of the Earth revolution.