While I vehemently disagree with most gun control proponents, I rarely doubt what they really want. No, it’s not really about control, not for most folks on that side of the fence, anyway. They really do think that gun control will save lives. They buy into the idea that guns are somehow responsible for gun violence and that if you take away the guns, violence will be reduced.
I even understand how they think violence will be reduced, mostly because they believe that while the same people may well be violent, they won’t have an efficient tool with which to hurt others, thus reducing their ability to be as violent.
Now, I think they’re wrong on every aspect of it. I said I understand it, not that I agree with it.
Understanding your opponents is very important. It’s good to know where they’re coming from so you can debate them effectively.
Meanwhile, in an article about the gun control fight, I came across a quote from a member of Moms Demand Action regarding the protests in Richmond on Monday.
“All over the country – Red States, Blue States, Purple States – are more aware of gun violence,” said Laura Hudson with Moms Demand Action, in a phone interview.
Hudson says the demonstration in Virginia and pushback in Arizona won’t deter their efforts.
“It’s a temper tantrum because we’re trying to pass laws that will save lives,” said Hudson.
A temper tantrum, huh?
Well, it’s good to know the opposition is taking our arguments seriously, now isn’t it?
Couple this with anti-gun lawmakers referring to gun rights supporters “little kids” and the media doing their level best to paint us as white supremacists and what you see is that reasonable debate is becoming less and less possible.
Richmond was an effort to remind Virginia lawmakers that gun rights supporters exist and aren’t in favor of anti-gun policies. While Democrats have decided already to ignore what the protesters had to say, it was still important. It’s something those in swing seats will have to consider if they want to remain in power.
But at all points, we respect that the vast majority of them are well-meaning if, ultimately, wrong. Oh, we slip up from time to time. I know I have, and I’ve done it in print, which is awkward, but I also don’t dismiss the entire gun control movement as petulant children upset at not getting their way on a regular basis.
That courtesy isn’t returned to us.
At the end of the day, we have to remember that we’re not trying to change their minds. Their minds aren’t likely to change. Nor are ours.
The debate is about swaying the middle, those who may have a position but are open to new information. Calling a massive protest a “temper tantrum” isn’t likely to play as well with those folks who may not agree with the protestors but at least understand they have concerns.
So please, Ms. Hudson, do continue. Continue to alienate those you want most on your side but who aren’t there yet. Make it clear that you have no respect for anyone who doesn’t completely agree with you.
We on the gun rights side thank you for your support.