A Proposed Solution to the Gun Debate

I rarely share my opinion on matters of debate because I am, quite frankly, a neurotic people pleaser. Sharing my opinion would mean entertaining the possibility that someone might not like it, and therefore in my mind, not like me. The thought of someone not liking me is up there with the thought of having needles poked in my eye – something I’d like to avoid. But, I’m going to bite the bullet (pun intended) and share my opinion, here,  anyway.

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I’m not sure exactly when it happened, but at some point, the “United” States of America seems to have become a divided nation of red states and blue states. Red states associating with conservative ideals, and blue states holding more liberal ideals. I am from Wyoming, and live in Texas – two extremely “red” states. But in my wanderings through life, I have come to identify with several “blue” state ideals.  Having friends and family ranging from one end of the spectrum to the other, I do my best to evaluate both sides of an argument as equally as possible. Trying to see things equally from both sides, however, has been disadvantageous for me. Disadvantageous in the way that jumping into a medieval torture chamber is disadvantageous. My mind is pulled and stretched into so much cerebral discomfort that I am forced to take refuge in ice-cream and baked goods.

This is what I’ve done with the gun debate. I want to fully understand where each side is coming from and why (ice-cream is standing by).

Those who are opposed to gun control feel that it would be a violation of the 2nd Amendment right to bear arms. Guns, they argue, function as a means of home protection as well as a line of defense in the event of a hostile government take-over. “Guns don’t kill people. People kill people.” The fact that Mexico has some of the strictest guns laws, yet maintains some of the highest rates of gun violence is another argument against gun control. These concerns are valid, and I can appreciate where they come from, but my work in the field of suicide prevention has led me to take a serious look at the other side of the debate as well.

The Centers for Disease Control listed firearms as the #12 cause of all deaths between 1999 and 2013, representing 1.3% of total deaths in the United States. They were also the #1 method of death by homicide (66.6% of all homicides) and by suicide (52.2% of all U.S. suicides) gun control – ProCon.org.

Seeing that guns are the #1 method of deaths by suicide stands out to me because at one point, I struggled with thoughts of suicide myself. Although it’s been quite some time, and I now turn to Ben and Jerry when I feel stressed, it wasn’t always that way. I recall how useless and hopeless I felt when I was in the midst of my deepest depression. I really thought the world would be a better place without me. Those thoughts became all consuming. They clouded my judgement the way driving in a snowstorm clouds your vision. You can’t see 5 inches in front of you let alone see a light at the end of the tunnel. I did not have access to a gun when I was at my lowest, but I’m not sure what might have happened if I did.  Eventually, the storm cleared, and I was able to get through my depression and start to heal, but I still don’t feel that owning a gun is the right method of home protection for me. While I respect the rights of those who do choose to use a gun, I would like to propose an alternative, possibly equally effective form of weaponry for home protection: The Archer’s Bow and Arrow.

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The bow was an important weapon for both hunting and warfare from prehistoric times until the widespread use of gunpowder in the 16th century (1). Firearms became the favored means of warfare weaponry because soldiers could easily shoot at each other from behind barricades, and they required significantly less training to use than did bows. Archers thus became obsolete on the battlefield. But, the bow and arrow still functions as a highly effective weapon for personal protection (this information was derived from wikipedia here and here).

If you’ve ever watched the Walking Dead, the character Daryl’s use of the cross-bow is a perfect example of this. Not only is he able to ward off loads of zombies, but he holds his own with that cross bow when it comes to able bodied attackers as well. Then, there is Katniss Everdeen who managed to overthrow an oppressive government with a single arrow in the Hunger Games Trilogy.

While I say this partially in jest, I can’t help but wonder what it would be like if we were a nation of archers.

Mass shootings would probably be a bit more difficult, and I can’t recall the last time I heard of a bank being robbed at the point of an arrow. I couldn’t find any statistics on homicides or suicides by bow and arrow, but I’m going to guess they are fairly low.

Replacing something that works as instantaneously as a firearm with something that requires just a moments more thought, isn’t going to solve all issues of violence, but it may help to minimize the damage of some of these issues.

Due to the complex nature of human behavior, I don’t think there is one, cure-all solution for the gun debate, but I do think those who wield a bow and arrow for personal protection are incredibly bad ass.

Disclaimer This post is intended for entertainment purposes only, and is by no means intended to function as a political platform. However, if it were, ice-cream would be included as would baked goods. 

(1) https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bow_and_arrow
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31 thoughts on “A Proposed Solution to the Gun Debate

  1. Definitely the most entertaining post on the gun issue I’ve read. 🙂 Serious content but also a humorous edge. The thought of me with a bow and arrow makes me chuckle. But the thought of me with a gun makes me cringe. So yeah, I’m game!

    Liked by 2 people

  2. I love the Walking Dead – not for the zombies but for the human condition. I also loved the Hunger Games and hope to come day learn how to handle a crossbow. I live in CO, was born and raised in WI and came from a hunting family. A number of my friends are hunters. We barter for foods with them. As the saying goes, its not the gun that kills people – it is the people. Until we can fix that, I will keep my right to bare arms. But nice article!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Correction: gums aren’t the the #1 metyhod of suicide, only the most effective. The statistics of deaths by guns makes it clear that availability of guns increases numbers of deaths. it’s a problem. there are a quajillion guns already out there and they’ll work for a long time. The 2nd amendment, in my opinion, is outdated and should be amended. Today, if the government wanted to enter your house, your gun would be little use against a drone attack. Unless you wanna live in a bunkhouse in Oregon. And then…

    Liked by 2 people

  4. In the 1590’s the Koreans unveiled a new weapon in defense of their homelands against the Japanese called the Hwacha. The Hwacha was capable of firing 200 fire-arrows at once raining death and torture upon their enemies. But mass shootings, or in this case, mass military casaulties became a fact of life even well before the birth of Alexander the Great in 356 BCE. So… here’s my proposal!

    Replace missles, arrows, bullets, artillery shells, et al… with cupcakes or Hershey Kisses, preferably Almond Kisses for some real crunch! Our battly cry???

    “Kill ’em with Sweetness!” 😉

    Disclaimer This comment is intended for entertainment purposes only, and is by no means intended to function as a political platform. However, if it were, cupcakes would be included as would Hershey Kisses!

    Liked by 2 people

  5. The suicide issue is one that makes this more complex, but my position has always been that people can have whatever guns they want on their own property to protect their homes and their family there. But once they cross their property line and are out in the world, we have a right to limit what they can bring out with them into our communities. The reality is that the 2nd amendment linked the right to bear arms to a well-regulated militia. Well-regulated means the government has the right to regulate the use of arms as it relates to that militia. There is no absolute right to bear arms as the NRA and its allies would like us to believe. And because of that, I believe we are well within our rights to limit arms out in the community in very significant ways.

    And, yeah, I would love it if the right attached to archery rather than guns.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. I remember being a pretty good bow and arrowmaster when I was in fifth grade, so I think if we all went back to the bow and arrow times, I would be in much better shape of defending myself than right now with all the guns. And by the way, I’m a peacekeeper/people pleaser too. And I can’t stand that about me.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Worth a try. Perhaps even go back further and try pelting stones 🙂 Have never understood who people with guns are protecting themselves against. Other people with guns, right? So if both of them did not have guns would it be better or worse?

    Liked by 1 person

    • Great point! Who are people with guns protecting themselves against other than OTHER people with guns? I like your idea about pelting stones, too 🙂 This makes me think of slingshots as well.

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    • I like your idea about pelting stones. It made me think of a slingshot, too 🙂 Although they are still “weapons” mass shootings and accidental deaths would likely not be as common as they are with guns.

      I agree and wonder who people with guns are protecting themselves against? It must be people with other guns. It seems very circular!

      Liked by 1 person

  8. 1. Great admission. A “personal” blog suits my personality too, because I don’t like to take up divisive political issues for fear of not being liked. Having said that, occasionally an issue has riled me enough to write about it, (eg I wrote a post about violence against women, & another about a major newspaper blatantly promoting plastic surgery), but they are exceptions.
    2. For some weird reason, I had not managed to pick up previously that you live in the US – I pictured you with a British accent! Isn’t that weird? I will now have to adjust your accent accordingly, to a long Texan drawl….who knows why I even need to picture your accent, when it’s me reading your writing, but there you go. That’s how my mind works apparently.
    3. Even adjusting the laws so that automatic weapons are tougher to come by would surely help the stats in the U.S. Here in Australia, laws around automatic weapons were changed in about 1996 after the Port Arthur massacre and since then, according to the common definition of a mass shooting as 4 or more victims, there have been no mass shootings.
    4. For another awesome display of archery I recommend a really trashy show on Netflix I’ve been watching with my teenage daughter, called Teen Wolf. Allison is the heroine and she rocks a bow and arrow!

    Liked by 1 person

    • I have actually always wanted to have a British accent, so I am rather glad you pictured it that way! 😀 I’ve actually only lived in TX for 5 years, but several other states in the US before that, so my accent is probably most like…Utah 😀

      I was really blown away by your point number 3! Thank you for sharing that. I actually didn’t know that. I think it is a very good testament to what adjusting guns laws can do!

      My husband proudly watched the whole 1st season of Teen Wolf 😀 I think I’ll have to check it out!

      Liked by 1 person

  9. If all the world could only replace bullets with Chunky Monkey nuggets…seriously…

    And on a serious note, I absolutely loathe guns. I’m of the belief that as I go through this world, I have an invisible shield around me, and wherever I go- it’s protecting me. If I’m ever out walking and a bullet flies through me, I’m pretty ok knowing that it was definitely my time to go! I don’t see me ever buying a gun to protect myself, you know? And like you, I’m just not down with having a gun in the house. (On the flip side, I do support people in their rights to own guns, however. I mean, I was born in Texas you know! :0)

    Back to my pink moscato. 😉

    (Pink moscato wine by “Barefoot” is the 2nd best wine I’ve ever had. You’ve got to try it. Out of 4,224 5 star reviews, it’s at a steady 4.8. Put little Jr. down for a nap and have a glass or three. You won’t regret it! Sooooo good….) x

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    • The wine sounds lovely! I have had Barefoot, but never the pink moscato variety! I must try it! I didn’t know you were born in Texas! Where in TX? I have only lived here for 5 years, so I don’t know if I count as a Texan…but, I think being born in TX does!

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      • Yep, you can say you’re a Texan. If you can be around that many cowboy hats and bad accents (for 5 years straight), you’ve earned your redneck stripes.

        I was born in Ft. Worth but moved to Indiana when I was 3 and I’ve been in this corn-blasted, cow-infested hell-hole ever since. I so wish I would come back home. It’s just in my blood. I still go barefooted everywhere! :0)

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  10. So far, I have lived in WY, AZ, MA, CO and TX with significant chunks of time in SD and CA throughout my life. I think I feel most at home in CO, but TX is growing on me 😉

    Like

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