SHOOTING DOWN GUN VIOLENCE – POST #7

There’s been an observation which was pounded into my head many years ago that has led to some unique insights in my life, and that observation has been –

“There are no right answers to the wrong questions.”

This means if no legitimate answers will ever be forthcoming, no matter how many times or the manner in which the question was asked, then the question itself must be changed. All too often we subconsciously insist on remaining stuck in a loop, blindly convincing ourselves we are not in a flawed environment and thinking that if we explore long enough, an exit will present itself.

Now, there is another philosophy I also turn to when looking for life’s solutions, and it involves changing one of the worst questions anyone can ever ask which is, “How can I please everyone?” It’s universally agreed that this path is a dead end, but this doesn’t stop vast numbers from foolishly pursuing what is obviously an impossible task. Not only is it massively unrealistic to even contemplate, I think it’s next to unachievable to even please a majority of people. How then must the original question be altered so that a viable outcome presents itself? If pleasing everyone is completely nonrealistic endeavor, then how’s this for the next best alternative, “Is it possible to piss off everyone equally?” I’ll bet after you’re done laughing a light bulb will start to go off. Here’s the logic of this approach. If it is indeed possible to take an issue and come up with a solution that pretty much upsets everyone on both sides of the aisle, then that solution has strangely caused balance between opposing forces.

I’ll let that sink in for a second…

With this new methodology in mind, let’s apply it to the hottest topic in the United States right now, gun control. First off, for the Love of God, stop calling it “gun control.” It’s insulting right out of the gate, and nobody who owns one is going to align with the idea of being “controlled.” I suppose we could say “There’s no right reaction to the wrong tactic” which is damn close to asking a wrong question to begin with. So, before we go any further, let’s find another more agreeable and sensible headline to the issue. How about calling the topic at hand “firearm responsibility”? Does that sound both less aggressive and more on point? For one, almost everyone thinks being responsible is proper behavior, and personally I prefer the term firearm instead of gun because it’s more descriptive of the function of the item. There’s power and purpose in communicating the correct vernacular, so this step is vital.

Eliminating guns in the United States is, for the moment, folly, therefore pointless and a waste of time and energy. There’s way too much push back from those who both own and manufacture these items. On the other hand the fact that there are approximately two and a half guns for every man, woman, and child in the country (816 million…) is a horrifying realization to those who are uninterested in personal use or ownership. Before we delve further into the subject, let’s look at the law that allows arms.

The Second Amendment says this –

“A well regulated Militia being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.”

Here is where we come to an idea which will piss off everyone when a solution to the clash between those who favor and those who oppose, is sought. Here is where we finally reinforce the first four words of the Second Amendment. On one side are gun owners who insist on keeping their guns. On the other side are people who insist on disarming potential threats. Here’s an idea that will do BOTH at the same time…

Let’s put high regulations on the type of AMMO people can buy.

You want to keep target shooting? Fine, you qualify for all the non-lethal bullets or cartridges you want. You’re a hunter? Okay, you qualify for rounds that will do the job for you, however, the shells will be marked with a lot number and when you want more, you’ll need to turn in a certain spent percentage to get more. Does this sound drastic? Does it allow guns to stay in the hands of gun owners? Does it violate the Second Amendment? Does it bother you that no one will be forced to give up their arms? Does it make you mad just reading this? Good… because here is where we will start building respect for the rights of those we disagree with, which is the real problem un this country right now.


I’m well aware, and actually agree with the observation often repeated by advocates that “Guns don’t kill people, people kill people.” The same can be said about… vehicles. Approximately two thirds of the people in the United States have driver’s licenses. That’s big percentage when you eliminate the numbers of elderly and underaged. In any case, as a responsible citizens, we are in agreement nationwide that those who get behind the wheel (private properties not included here) are required to have passed an aptitude test before they are allowed on public roads. Not only that, if they comply with the law, they are ALSO required to carry insurance so that those who are victims of all manner of accidents have a safeguards in place for situations of irresponsibly or unforeseen incidents. It’s also well known that if you drive more complicated and larger vehicles, then a certificate proving increased competence is required along with higher insurance rates. Now, do people indeed drive without either licensing or insurance? Of course, happens all the time. Laws don’t keep criminals from conducting illegal actions, but that’s not the point. Here’s the REAL point. Would the elimination of both licensing and insurance for drivers also lead to an increase of highly irresponsible behavior including a huge jump in the death rate on the roads of our nation? What a stupid question. We have laws in effect because it’s agreed upon by EVERYONE that the absence of said laws would lead to total chaos, so do me a favor, keep this argument in mind the next time you spout “guns don’t kill people, people kill people.” If we approach firearm ownership with the same sensibilities as we do vehicles, then does this not now bring into focus as well as enforcement those first four words, “A well regulated Militia…”?    

And by the way, one more thing…


The idea we have “rights” is not what most think it is. The truth of the matter is ALL rights, even if they are given, are kept by earning them. The reason this is true is because the opposite is true, all rights can be lost. How? Through irresponsible behavior of course. Jails and prisons are full of people who are proof of this observation. Gun ownership is no different because no one would agree with the notion that irresponsible people should have access to lethal methods of solving problems or expressing themselves.

Have fun arguing this solution because in the end, we’ll all end up on the same side because of it.

Please follow my blog, comment and share as you wish.

With Love and Compassion, Daniel Andrew Lockwood

THIS WORLD IS WORTH SAVING

Do you agree?

.

If so, I want this and the rest of these posts to go viral. Where’s the harm in asking? PLEASE share, PLEASE care, PLEASE let others be aware. I WANT FEEDBACK, I will acknowledge anything said with sincerity and kindness. Let’s begin discussions that REALLY will bring about action.

.

Contemplate this FACT for just a moment and you will see how little energy it takes to change things.

“Never-doubt-that-a-small-group-of-thoughtful-committed-citizens-can-change-the-world.-Indeed-it-is-the-only-thing-that-ever-has.”-Margaret-Mead

What a powerful truth this is, because once known, how difficult can it be to follow through? I intend to try, and I don’t even care if my name is attached to the final outcome. This journey we are on isn’t about fame, power, or wealth. It’s about “what if?” What if we stood as one and lived to help each other? What if we actually stopped fighting long enough to see our harmonious visions come to fruition? I intend to die supporting this philosophy.

Do you?

I do not see a world better off without people. We are miracles. We are the opposite of the entropic nature of the universe. We have the power of choosing unification over selfishness; each of us a part of the whole. We have the means to alter our destiny for the better. We can put aside petty differences fueled by false lines drawn in the earth.  We are not animals with pure instinct and we have the means to choose an evolved co-existence. We can come together for a better good. We can combine our resources, dreams, desires, and hopes to either step down into the abyss and be forgotten by time as Earth continues it’s voyage through the cosmos, or we can step up to the stratosphere and beyond in search of new meaning and resovle. I choose the latter.

How indeed do we find those causes that move us to our best destiny? What will fuel the next celebration be that unites us as a planet?

What I’ve attempted to lay out here are parameters for world changing incidents. Please feel free to ask me to alter the following in any way. This is a work in progress and therefore subject to addition or subtraction as you wish. I am completely open-minded; no ego in play what so ever.

.

First Observation- What world events have changed the planet for the better?

  • The man who stood in front of the tanks in China’s Tiananmen Square
  • The crucifixion.
  • Rosa Parks refusing to give up her seat.
  • Nelson Mandela’s incarceration and subsequent release that led to the end of apartheid
  • Gandhi’s hunger strikes protesting British rule over India.
  • Harriet Tubman and the Underground Railroad.
  • July 20th, 1969.
  • The fall of the Berlin wall.
  • The discovery of penicillin.
  • The world-wide web potentially allowing an equal voice to almost everyone.

This next entry is a post I put on my other blog that represents to me just what we can accomplish in such a short amount of time.

statue-of-liberty

TWENTY REASONS WHY I KNOW THE WORLD IS A MUCH BETTER PLACE THAN IT WAS ONLY 150 YEARS AGO….

  1. Indoor plumbing.
  2. Soap, bathing, deodorant, and a general acceptance toward a cleaner lifestyle.
  3. The 40 hour work week.
  4. We don’t gather in the town square and watch people get hung for lack of entertainment anymore.
  5. The accessibility to a highly educated and well informed life (past even the most scholarly of people) is literally lying in wait to be absorbed at libraries and the internet for FREE.
  6. Refrigeration. It has been suggested that this is the most important invention since the wheel. I agree.
  7. We as a world are recognizing more than ever the potential equality of every human.
  8. More people are working on more solutions for those who suffer than ever before.
  9. The ability for one voice to be heard around the world is easily within the grasp of those who seek it. All change throughout history has started this way, and now it can happen at the speed of light.
  10. Medical advancements have not only relieved hardship and misery from millions, the average life span has been extended so further progress in all areas of existence can be explored by those who survive.
  11. Radio, television, movies, and now the internet now brings to even the most remote regions of the world our capacity to express beauty, art, and our common threads in the form of music, imagery, and literature.
  12. The idea of freedom is the magnetic pull that seeks to unite all mankind. It expands daily and will not be stopped. Hope grows in the minds of those who never dared think it.
  13. Self-help, community support, and 12 step groups have given countless sufferers a path out of darkness that never previously existed.
  14. The electrifying of the planet has done more to bring comfort and convenience into our lives than almost anything else.
  15. The scientific community as a whole, from micro-technology to space travel, drives us to continued exploration of of our boundaries, both inside and out. These achievements perpetuate unity and purpose.
  16. We are finally recognizing we cannot continue exploiting our support system, a.k.a- the planet itself. “Saving the Earth” is NOT about whether or not it can overcome our abuse, it will. I’t’s about whether or not we will be on it when it eventually does. We are finally seeing we can only s**t  where we sleep so long.
  17. A largely unrecognized step in our recent evolution is the rise of humor. From visual media to literature, from stand-up comics to comic strips, we have embrace the desire to share and perpetuate laughter.
  18. Feats of engineering have improved almost everyone’s lives. Roads, buildings, heating and air conditioning, all forms of transportation, etc. are part of a better, more connected, world. The list is vast and continues to grow.
  19. Prejudice is waning and forgiveness is growing.The treatment of groups that were once trod upon for ethnic, political, spiritual, mental, and sexual issues reasons is slowly fading away. In return these groups are learning to release the hate they have expressed towards their oppressors and move on into lives of self-empowerment; dropping the need to blame or accuse current situations on past events.
  20. The beauty of our universe is being revealed in ways never before dreamed. The magnificence of this infinite painting that God has so eloquently created is beyond description. If united we can look upon this and realize just what a miracle it is even to do so, then perhaps we have a chance to grow beyond our differences and continue in peaceful coexistence.

Do I know there are circumstances in the world that need to be erased? Do I know the aforementioned conditions are not everywhere? Of course I do. The goal here is NOT to dwell on problems, but solutions. Please feel free to add to this list and make it grow. Focus on what is already good and getting better. This isn’t a wish list, it’s a recognition one. The dreams of today are the cradles of our children. May future generations have the hindsight to thank their ancestors better than we have.

.

Second Observation -What are the Common Threads?

  • Public (NOT protests, rallies….big difference; don’t fight against someone else’s agenda, stand up for your own. I.E.- don’t fight against violence, stand up for peace. This approach is an absolute must.)
  • Always passionate, focused, and unifying in nature.
  • Anger, hostility, and bitterness towards others is not allowed.
  • Large sacrifices are usually involved either before or eventually that consist mostly of time, patience, money and sometimes even life itself.
  • There always seems to be an underlying element of spirituality (not religion.)
  • The cause is usually about freedom, unification, or exploration (equality, independence, human rights, expression, or just plain old curiosity.)
  • People are drawn to the cause; there is magnetism to the message (the turn of the century labor strikes, civil rights, the hippie movement, etc.)
  • It makes good media.
  • It makes the “bad” guys look foolish. The more “they” try and stop progress, the more they put their own necks in the noose.

Now we simply “reverse engineer” the specifications mentioned above to find further experiences that fits the boundaries set up by previous events.

As this blog progresses WE will try to come up with some examples of what might help mankind within the “rules” set up above. I do not want to do this alone, surely there are others who feel as I do. Please send in suggestions, Some posts will be funny in nature, some serious, some will be slight, some extremely powerful, but I guarantee all will be entertaining. The goal here is to generate one post per month and we will see how it goes from there.

My first entry past this introduction will address the possibility of creating thousands of jobs in the United States all without hardly spending a dime. Everyone I’ve pitched this idea to has demanded I go public with it. Perhaps it will find traction here if you are willing help.

Ideas mean nothing without action. Dreamers gather seeds while visionaries plant gardens and recruit workers to tend them. Am I asking a lot? Yes, you better believe it. Stepping up to save this beautiful planet is not something that’s going to be easy, but in the long run won’t it be nice to know that this is where it started?

Please follow this blog. Comment and share as you wish

With Love and Compassion, Daniel Andrew Lockwood