Thursday, 18 April 2013

Carry guns - but not real ones

As a general rule, I try to avoid having a serious point to my blog posts.  That's not what my blog is about.  It's main purpose is to satisfy my need to be creative, and hopefully it entertains some people along the way.

But here we go anyway.

So, the US Senate has blocked a plan to carry out background checks on people that want to buy guns.

Interesting, isn't it?  How different countries approach issues?

In this country, for example, when I was to help out with groups of schoolkids doing cycling proficiency training, I had to have a CRB (Criminal Record Bureau) check to ensure that I was safe to work with children.  Personally at the time I felt it was a little over the top, because I wouldn't be alone with a child, but then I wasn't a parent then, and as a parent now I'm automatically more cautious about my son and who spends time with him.

And yet in other countries, people are welcome to carry around chunks of metal that cause death by pointing it at someone and pressing a trigger - without checks!  Fascinating.

I haven't done the research as to why owning guns increases the risk of people being killed (it kind of seems obvious to me - Cracked did some work on it though) but it seems fairly obvious to me.

We all have emotions.  We have good days, and bad days.

Some people have really bad days.

If you're having a really bad day for whatever reason - it could be that you are more prone, for whatever reason, to suffer really really tough days, or it could be that something really bad has happened to you - would you want to have access to a gun and the ability to use it?

Personally, no way.  I generally consider myself to be fairly level-minded and I do try to look after my own wellbeing (mental health is generally overlooked when people consider their health) but regardless of that, I wouldn't want a gun in the house because I wouldn't want to be responsible for it.  Being able to cause death that easily is not an ability I want.

 "But you play games with guns!" people may cry.  Indeed, I do.  I've posted links on my blog (and will again - probably this week because I'm buying Counterstrike: Global Offensive!) of photos where I've 'killed' someone, or more commonly where they've 'killed' me.  But it doesn't mean that I want to have a real gun to do it.  And if you think video games create violence - have a read of this.  I can find a session of Modern Warfare 3 to be a relaxing way to offload some stress.  It doesn't make me want to carry around a selection of weaponry in real life.  If you wanted to, you could argue that chess is violent as essentially two armies fight it out to 'kill' the other sides king. It doesn't mean that your argument is logical.

So, that's my view for what it's worth.  I don't think myself guns should be available to the general public (as funny as it was to watch a guy shooting his daughters laptop - I'd rather sell the thing as a punishment).  Of course there's a risk for the guns that are already out there being used, but we've got tightly controlled restriction on guns in the UK since 1997 (but still there's a lot of opportunity for people to own a gun if they really want to), and we have one of the lowest rates of gun homicide in the world.  I wouldn't for a moment say that the UK is perfect because it isn't, but at least guns aren't something that I worry about when my son goes to nursery.

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