Roland Thigpen (jenius@unspacy.org)
3 Mar 2000 14:14:39 -0000


On Fri, 3 Mar 2000 20:49:40 +0800 Federico Makabenta <yenm@iconn.com.ph> wrote:
>This is OT but, just a question for Americans on this list. I'm personally
>curious.
>
>Personal observation: I've heard Americans blame violence in media. However,
>I really believe that some blame should be put on advocating stricter gun
>control policy. Is "the right to bear arms" worth defending for Americans?
>If so, why?
>

You really should place the blame where it truly lies: In the ineptness of many parents nowadays.

As I was growing up, my family had many guns in our home. They were always in a gun case, under lock and key. My father taught me about the purpose of such weapons when I was no more than 6 (and about that time I held my first gun, unloaded of course; then he showed me how to load and fire it), and I had always watched whatever I wanted to on tv (A-Team, war movies, cartoons, whatever). My parents taught me early on the difference in right and wrong, as did the church. I never felt the need of carrying a gun anywhere, and I loved my parents so much I never wanted to dissappoint them by doing something that was wrong. Now, I may not have been a "typical" child, but I had friends who I would go out with me and practice shooting, archery, what not, but we never went out of control with it. We never felt the need to go out and kill those who had done us wrong (and hell, I was the one everyone picked on in school, so I had plenty of excuses). And the friends I am talking about were!
 brought up in much the same way as myself. It also helped that one of my uncles was a police officer, and also had a hand in teaching me gun awareness.

So, I say once again, blame the parents and the child's upbringing.

As for gun control, and the right to bear arms, I will defend it to my last breath. As a belt of father's quotes, "You can have my gun when you pry my cold dead fingers from around it." Now, saying this, it should be known that I do not own a gun as yet (I will when my father passes his down, but not before in all likelyhood). I will tell you why I say that I approve of the right to bear guns. One night, many, many years ago, my parents and I returned home to find that our house had been broken into, and several items (including some of my dad's guns) had been stolen. Had we been at home, or had we returned while the burglar(s) had still been there, who knows what might have happened? The burglar might have been armed, in which case there might have been a shoot out, or he might have been unarmed which would have meant that we could have held him at gunpoint until the police arrived (and there was a cop that lived the next street over). It is situations such as this that make !
me truly believe in the right to bear arms. After all, the criminal element will always find some way to get what they want. How can we protect ourselves from them if we don't have the tools to do so?

>I may not have a great grasp of the issue since I come from another country.
>But I've not heard the responses of anyone here blaming easy access to a gun
>in the house to be of prime concern. That's why I believe blaming the media
>is ridiculous from this POV.
>

I believe I have covered this above.

>I do believe that people make too many inferences that the media is to
>blame. Japan survived with one of the lowest crime rates in the world while
>series about war (like Gundam) were shown on TV. Only recently has an
>upsurge in a new breed of criminal been noticed. Serial killers and sex
>offenders have started popping up there, but the blame has been placed
>squarely on police ineptness - not really blaming violent media like Gundam.
>But I do agree there's a greater sensitivity there now with regards to
>what's shown in the media.
>

I personally have never believed in blaming tv or other media for the stuff it gets blamed for. I have known people who refuse to let their children see anything that has any violence in it whatsoever. This is doing nothing more than hiding the child's head in the sand, and not preparing them for real world realities. And then there are people such as myself, who have been exposed to almost every type of movie, tv show, etc. from a young age, and have had no problems seperating reality from fiction.

>Another Q: How will you guys from the US of A, as Gundam fans react or
>defend Gundam Wing if it does get a backlash from incidents like this?
>
>Fed
>

It will, and it will be stupid idiots that don't really know the first thing about how to bring a child up right that will be doing the blaming (because after all, it can't be their fault their child turned out as s/he did). One thing you have to realize is that in America, it is all about pointing fingers and finding scapegoats (cynical aren't I?) in most cases. People are unwilling and/or unable to accept the responibilities for their actions. It is sad, but true. I for one, try not to do this. I try to place the blame were it truly belongs, whether on myself or another.

Perhaps it was a matter of my upbringing?

As for defending Gundam Wing, I don't know. It would depend on the arguements used against it. Time will tell.

Roland

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