"Good Men Project" Prefers Smiles To Self-Defense

I confess, I didn’t know much about the Good Men Project before I stumbled across this insipid column by a guy named Tim Clark bemoaning the fact that the state of Ohio is considering several pro-Second Amendment bills, including a Constitutional Carry measure. Supposedly the non-profit is all about examining “what it means to be a good man in today’s society,” but their idea of what a good man truly is apparently revolves around accepting without question every dogma of the Left.

I won’t get into the site’s hot takes on reparations, “outdated paradigms” of relationships, or “toxic masculinity,” though they’d all provide good fodder for my non-2A colleagues at Townhall Media. Instead, on today’s Bearing Arms’ Cam & Co we’re focusing specifically on Clark’s call to disarm in the name of the greater good.

Lest you think I’m being hyperbolic in my description, let me quote the conclusion of Clark’s piece:

… this movement toward a more heavily armed, bellicose society is troubling. What are we so afraid of? The only answer I can come up with is each other. And I guess that makes sense considering how quickly we are rushing toward a society armed to the teeth and waiting for a chance to practice a little state-approved vigilante-style self-defense.

I would like to see a bill come up for a vote requiring everybody to smile at a stranger. It would make everybody a lot happier if we could make kindness a mandate. It would save a lot of lives if we could make tolerance a law.

What if we could stop all the incessant whining about individual liberties and recognize we are part of larger group with responsibilities toward the whole? What if we could engineer a world where people, all people, felt carrying a gun was foolish, expensive and dangerous?

Nah, that’s too crazy. It will never work.

Well, at least he’s right about one thing. It is crazy to seriously think about “engineering a world” where nobody felt the need to carry a gun. After all, in order to do that, you’d have to remove the threat of armed criminals entirely, and no one’s quite been able to figure out how to do that. Instead, gun control ends up targeting legal gun owners, while criminals generally pay no mind to laws that make it a crime to own or carry a gun, no matter how restrictive they may be. Even in England, which banned handguns back in the 1980s, shootings still take place. In fact, “gun crime” is on the rise in the United Kingdom, just as it increased in New Zealand last year after the country imposed a sweeping gun ban and compensated confiscation scheme.

Besides that fact, Clark is seemingly oblivious to the fact that we’re not “rushing towards a society armed to the teeth” and ready to engage in some vigilante justice. We’ve always had the right to keep and bear arms in this country, and throughout our nation’s history, many of us have chosen to do so. Clark is conflating legal gun ownership with violent crime, which doesn’t make him a good man. It just makes him a gun control activist.

Clark may have embraced a utopian ideal of a gun-free world, but here in the real world we know that individuals acting in self-defense and in defense of others are a good thing. Take this case out of White Settlement, Texas this past weekend, when a man tracked down his wife and kids at an apartment and threatened to “shoot the door down” in order to get to them. After firing a blast from his shotgun through the front door of the apartment, the wife’s brother returned fire with an “AR-style rifle,” killing the man and saving several lives in the process.

Clark presumably only sees two bad men here; one who was prepared to inflict violence on his wife and kids and one who was prepared to defend them. Their diametrically different intentions matter less than the fact that they were both armed. For Clark, gun ownership itself can turn a good man bad. For me and millions of Americans, however, the gun itself isn’t the issue. It’s the evil (or good) that lurks in the hearts of men that makes all the difference.