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Old July 27, 2018, 02:04 PM   #1
Prof Young
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People who hate and fear firearms . . .

I've had a long FB "conversation" with one of my former students who is vigorously against guns.

He stereotypes hunter as people who just want to "rip animals to shreds" and he is sure that the "only conclusion" one can make of someone who owns a lot of guns is that they must be up to something "dangerous." So it's been an interesting look into the mind of someone who hates and clearly fears guns without really knowing much about them.

I've tried to keep the discourse civil and clearly pointed out the areas where we have agreement. I've had to explain the difference between semi and full auto. I pointed out that he'd bought into the Hollywood stereotype about hunters being a bunch of rednecks ready to blast away at anything that moved etc. And the revelation that Jerry Lewis owned a small arsenal was a good response to his "only conclusion" about people who owned a lot of guns.

Unfortunately the end result seems to be that he has bailed from the debate.

It seems to me that we fight for the second amendment on two fronts. The major "battle" lines are in the legislature and the courts and in the election campaigns. We fight the legal battle to maintain our right to bear arms in all the variations that we should have for that right.

But the second front while much more quiet and subtle is nonetheless as important. Our person to person interactions with those who are anti-gun must be as civil yet proactive as we can make it. If someone stops listening or engaging in the debate make it be on them. We must keep our person to person discourse civil and polite and logical and if the anti-gun person bails on the debate. It's on them. And when they are ready to talk again . . . so are we.

Life is good.

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Old July 27, 2018, 02:21 PM   #2
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Every right has its inherent responsibility. People who own guns have the responsibility to use them safely and wisely. Same as people who own cars that can go 200 mph have the responsibility to use them safely and wisely. If I collect Mustangs or Firebirds, it does not mean that I want to go on a cross-country racing spree like Cannonball Run. If I own 50 firearms, it does not mean I am going on a mass shooting spree. It simply doesn't follow. But there are those in the media and anti-gun rhetoricians who would have you believe this, and they claim the right to say these things under the Bill of Rights.

It is possible to win the rhetoric battla, but it has to be wide-spread and not just in the courts.
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Old July 27, 2018, 02:50 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Prof Young
I've tried to keep the discourse civil and clearly pointed out the areas where we have agreement. I've had to explain the difference between semi and full auto. I pointed out that he'd bought into the Hollywood stereotype about hunters being a bunch of rednecks ready to blast away at anything that moved etc. And the revelation that Jerry Lewis owned a small arsenal was a good response to his "only conclusion" about people who owned a lot of guns.

Unfortunately the end result seems to be that he has bailed from the debate.
That, unfortunately, is the nature of hoplophobia. As you probably know, a phobia is an irrational fear. Hoplophobes have an irrational fear of guns and, when the fear is irrational, rational discourse is usually impossible. Your former student disengaged because his mind exploded. He is unwilling to give up his fear and loathing of firearms, yet he can't deal with the truth that none of his reasons for said fear and loathing have any basis in reality.
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Old July 27, 2018, 03:05 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dr. Young
I've had a long FB "conversation" with one of my former students who is vigorously against guns.
...Our person to person interactions...
I don't know if it's funny or sad that we count FB as person to person.

It's a rare person who can discuss his passions in a civil and temperate way; passion and temperance aren't natural allies. It's too common that people express barely examined prejudices with fervor.

Want the optimist's view of your former student leaving your argument? He understood that his position needed work and had the uncommon sense to stop typing while he worked on it.

The nice thing about personal discussion over time is its incremental quality. You may not convert this fellow into a shooting enthusiast, but he could accept that people could want to have a firearm for rationally based reasons he can understand, but not share. That would be a victory as an advocate and a teacher.
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Old July 27, 2018, 03:36 PM   #5
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I just ask them questions and let them draw their own conclusions. It's too damn hard to change a person's mind. Lead them with questions.
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Old July 27, 2018, 04:12 PM   #6
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There are more than two fronts in my opinion,,,
And I'm getting too old to want to waste energy on any of them.

A third front I immediately think of are those who I call the cowards,,,
They wouldn't take up arms to defend their own selves or families.

Read Jeffrey Snyder's "A Nation of Cowards" to see who I am talking about.

I agree wholeheartedly with Prof Young in that we must remain civil in our discourse,,,
Unfortunately the anti gun folk (whatever their front) have no such scruples.

And to tell the Gods honest truth,,,
I'm just too danged tired of dealing with them.

In over 40 years of firearm advocacy,,,
I don't think I've turned even one anti to a pro gun stance,,,
And if I'm being critically honest I don't think I've swayed many moderates either.

In the past 15 years I have convinced some younger people that guns aren't evil,,,
But this is due to my job where I work with a slew of college undergrads.

Many (most?) of them start with anti-gun philosophies,,,
But many of those I've been able to take to the range for some plinking,,,
And I've actually managed to sway their thoughts to guns may not be so bad after all.

But with adults I've not had anywhere near that level of success,,,
I honestly can't think of even one rabid anti-gunner whose mind I've changed.

So as I move into my senior years and nearer to my retirement,,,
I'm going to leave the open/overt advocacy to people younger than I am.

To paraphrase an old saying,,,
I'm tired of trying to teach pigs to sing,,,
It's only wasting my time and is annoying to the pigs.

Aarond

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Old July 27, 2018, 05:21 PM   #7
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Just my opinion, but . . .

I think the answer is right there in your OP title: "People who fear and hate . . ." The people you're talking about are operating from a position of emotional response. Not logic, or rational thought. "Fear and hate" automatically drive logic and reason right out the window and pretty much necessarily put "illogical thought and irrational response" in the driver's seat.

Case in point: I recently had a similar discussion with an acquaintance, who we'll call "Sara." Sara is allegedly a Mensa-level intelligence, with multiple Masters degrees in psychology, mathematics, and something else, and a PhD in statistical analysis, I believe. Long story short, I brought to her attention that although gun-ownership has increased nearly 100% from 30+ years ago, gun-related homicide has fallen over 49% over the same time span.

Didn't make a dent. In spite of the fact that I could show her several articles/charts from sources including the FBI, Scientific American, CNN, even the CDC, she refused to admit that the above was fact. Just flat refused.

It was very much like talking to a Flat-Earther (I've actually run into TWO of these morons). My point being that "Hate" and "Fear" trump intelligence, nearly every time.

On the other hand, I personally converted two formerly anti-gun people into pro-gun people merely by taking them shooting. I'd hazard a guess that again this had nothing to do with logic or reason. They simply enjoyed the experience (emotional response).

Like I said, just my opinion.
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Old July 27, 2018, 05:42 PM   #8
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The cave man hid in his cave from the wind, storms or thunder. Not understanding or having misinformation about gun keeps a lot of sheeple hiding & too scared to even openly talking about guns. There is a guy at work that said he was scared of me just for talking about guns.
There are still some that hide inside from thunderstorms so I not sure if we can reach everyone with the truth about guns.
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Old July 27, 2018, 05:57 PM   #9
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My wife grew up in a house with a cruel and irresponsible gun owner. She hates guns and I am sympathetic because they were used as an instrument to terrorize her when she was a girl. Consequently her attitude with me and guns is "I trust you, but I don't want to see them." They stay locked up and I clean them when she isn't around. I shoot at a range and I don't talk to her about my hobby. It's a bit of a bummer, but I am not going to try to inflict what I enjoy on her.

I think that's an important thing to remember as gun owners. Violence involving guns happens a lot. That means a lot of people have trauma related to guns. That should not give them the right to infringe on our rights, but it should give us some sympathy to stuff like hostile reactions to open carry events and fear about guns.
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Old July 27, 2018, 05:59 PM   #10
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Most people I've run into who are serious-anti's have never shot a gun. "Xenophobia", fear of the unknown.
I (usually) offer to let them go shooting with me, their choice of handguns or Barrett .50.
Virtually all want to shoot the Barrett. They also seem to have a blast and they all want slow motion video of them shooting a .50 BMG.

Most also realize that guns don't go off by themselves.

A few have considered taking classes and getting a gun.
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Old July 27, 2018, 06:28 PM   #11
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Most of the anti-gun propaganda comes from two sources.
The liberal media and the public school system.
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Old July 27, 2018, 07:09 PM   #12
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I know people who are anti-gun because their first contact with guns were related to suicides or homicides. There are some pretty base level emotional reasons to hate and fear guns if they only meant death to you. But these people make up a small minority of those who support restricting our rights. I think it's more important to focus on those who hate and fear the right to bear arms. That's an important distinction to me.
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Old July 27, 2018, 07:27 PM   #13
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Quote:
Hoplophobes have an irrational fear of guns and, when the fear is irrational, rational discourse is usually impossible. Your former student disengaged because his mind exploded. He is unwilling to give up his fear and loathing of firearms, yet he can't deal with the truth that none of his reasons for said fear and loathing have any basis in reality.
This happens all the time with the current crop of Anti-American Socialists (aka "Progressives"); and it is not limited to just guns. These folks are the least informed, most easily manipulated and intolerant generation in the history of this country.

As mentioned above, arguing with these folks is like trying to teach a pig to sing; it never works and only aggravates the pig.
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Old July 28, 2018, 01:43 AM   #14
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One of the things that make people hate and fear guns is something the psychiatrists call "projection". Apparently its a very common human trait, but not a rational one.

They don't know anything about guns (other than they kill), they don't trust themselves with a gun, so therefore, they can't trust anyone else with a gun, either.

Of course, they are "trained" that a uniform and a badge nullifies the risk of gun possession, though there are those who believe the police shouldn't have guns, either.

Such a large percentage of our population lives in cities and urban areas that the only exposure to firearms is negative (use by criminals) and the fantasy use of guns on their TV and game screens.

As someone ( a short Jedi?) once observed, ignorance leads to fear, fear leads to anger, anger leads to hate, and hate leads to the Dark Side....(or something like that...)

One cannot open a closed mind. Only they can do that, and few closed minds are interested in opening.
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Old July 28, 2018, 10:12 AM   #15
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A couple of years ago, I had a dialogue on FB about guns with a lady who was not on the far rabid left about guns but didn't like them and decided to blindside me with all sorts of incorrect drivel. I took the civil position of discussing it with her over several days. She was actually starting to tone down her stance, though still far from being pro gun.

Suddenly, one of MY buddies jumped into the discussion and blasted her with a ton of pro-gun hatred and vitriol and she switched back to a hard stance against guns, even more so than she had started with. I was pretty well stunned by his comments and promptly blasted him and I haven't see him since.

Crazy happens on all sides. I agree with OP 100%. It's not WHAT we say, it's HOW we say it.

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Old July 28, 2018, 11:03 AM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Prof Young
Unfortunately the end result seems to be that he has bailed from the debate.
That is a common human response when our irrational beliefs are confronted by reason. Very few folks will openly admit to being wrong.

We see it all the time on this very forum. There will be an intense debate that just "ends". A while later, the same debate will rear up and someone will have switched sides.

They never admitted to being wrong, they just changed sides and now argue the opposite point.

At the very least, your friend will be left to contemplate his views. He may never admit to being wrong, may never "switch sides", but you know you planted a seed.
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Old July 28, 2018, 11:43 AM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Brian Pfleuger
At the very least, your friend will be left to contemplate his views. He may never admit to being wrong, may never "switch sides", but you know you planted a seed.
The question is whether you planted the seed on fertile ground, or on rock ...
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Old July 28, 2018, 12:45 PM   #18
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We are all conneted !!!

Quote:
But the second front while much more quiet and subtle is nonetheless as important. Our person to person interactions with those who are anti-gun must be as civil yet proactive as we can make it.
Yes; I feel that this an important point but I would ask that we need to respect each ours feelings even when both sides "may" be wrong. I have had numbers conversations with anti-firearm and hunting and as soon as the conversation starts to get disrespectful, it's over but hopefully, not for long. I had to lean this, the hard way.

I usually do the introduction to our Hunter Safety classes. Right off I tell them that owning firearms and hunting animals is not a requirement but if they choose to do so, "We" are here to teach how to safely lawfully do so. Man, do I get some strange looks. Yes, we have had students that say they don't intend to hunt or purchase a firearm, but they still have a reason to be there and usually there are personal conversation that follow. …. :

I am active in the hunting and shooting community and some of us, have helped to create these sentiments. I tell the students that as hunter, we are all connected. What we do reflects on all of us. …..


Be Safe !!!
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Old July 28, 2018, 12:56 PM   #19
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"Read Jeffrey Snyder's "A Nation of Cowards" to see who I am talking about."
This was a good read. Americans have surrendered so much all due to fear.
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Old July 28, 2018, 04:28 PM   #20
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Originally Posted by Aguila Blanca
The question is whether you planted the seed on fertile ground, or on rock ...
True enough, and yet the answer to that is not always obvious until well after the seed is planted. All we can do is plant, and hope.

Besides, we shouldn't be too hard on others. I don't think I've ever met someone who isn't a "rock" on one issue or another.

I worry less about how hard the ground is on the other side and more about keeping mine plowed.
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Old July 28, 2018, 04:40 PM   #21
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Kenny, if you haven't already done so, read Michael Chrichton's State of Fear. Not one of his best novels having to do with "global warming". However, about a third of the way into the book there is a several page dissertation by one of the characters on how the government uses fear to control the population and exactly how they do it and who the cooperating entities are. It's quite eye opening.
Good example but not from the book. You know the, "You're more likely to be killed by you own gun than by the bad guy." line of BS. State of fear. You're now afraid to even try and protect yourself and hope praying will save your hide because Sarah Brady said so.
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Old July 29, 2018, 11:26 AM   #22
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I can no longer remember the author who said it (and whether it was their personal opinion or one of their characters), but I do remember the idea, and the supporting argument, which was essentially that..

Eventually, the Internet will be the death of individual thought.

(and this was at least a decade ago, maybe more...)

The supporting argument was, uniquely enough, biology! Specifically, evolution. The comparison was made that individual thought and beliefs are like genetic mutations, The point went something like this...

Random mutations happen all the time. But in a large population, all "connected" and interbreeding, unless the mutation offers a radical improvement in individual survival, it is extremely rare that the mutation will survive, and become a dominant trait. It will be diluted, and overwhelmed by the DNA of the "normal" mass of the population within a few generations, and will, either disappear entirely or at best, become a regressive gene that only appears rarely in individuals, and is even more rarely dominant in them.

But, if the breeding population is isolated from the bulk of the species, by a remote location (like an island) DIVERGENCE will occur, and can, over time, survive and even become dominant, resulting in entirely different plants and animals than the rest of the world. Australia is one given example.

The parallel with individual thoughts/beliefs is pretty clear, to me, at least. And I believe one can clearly see the effect of group think/herd mentality on social media today. Since we are all connected, ideas that diverge from the accepted norms are swamped (or sometimes stomped) out of existence by the sheer mass of the entire rest of the world.

A single, or a small number of individuals have a thought, post it, and within minutes millions of other people are agreeing with them, and adopting the cause as their own. Dissenters are most frequently overwhelmed into irrelevance. Sometimes they are attacked and destroyed.

From nature to social and political thought, this has always been going on, but the internet and our modern communications networks, enhance, and accelerate the process. And, they also have a huge effect on solidifying the accepted "norms" power and influence. It is very much a case of "mob rule".

And the mob leaders don't want anyone but their hired employees (police, private security, & the military) to have guns. Guns in the hands of people they don't "own" are a potential, and sometimes an actual threat to their aims and desires to rule the rest of us.

Think about the creation of the United States. And think about why it happened here, and almost nowhere else in the world. One of the big factors that both allowed it to begin, and aided in its eventual success was our isolation from our hereditary rulers in England.

When the King's orders, and the soldiers to enforce them are only a day or three days away from dissenters, rebellion is most difficult, and easiest to overwhelm. When it takes weeks, or a couple months by ship to reach those in rebellion, the new ideas have time to spread and take hold, making them much more difficult for the old order to stamp out.

We have now a couple generations who have been trained their entire lives to hate and fear guns. Their political masters tell them to do so, their social peers demand they do so, the incredible BS about guns on their video screens teaches them, 24/7 these days.

Telling these people about reality is not a terribly effective teacher. But reality rudely biting them in the ass usually is. The old joke about "the most staunch law and order supporter is a liberal who has been mugged" is not entirely untrue...

When the hate and fear guns people feel physically threatened, where to they turn? to someone with a gun! IF their servants (police etc.) with guns don't make them feel secure, they want a gun of their own!!! Double standard? oh yeah...
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Old July 29, 2018, 11:43 AM   #23
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Honestly, the best sway you can have with anti’s or undecideds is civil conversation that is clear that you are an active gun owner with clear thoughts about what guns mean to you.

Then, after some friendly patient conversation, you will likely agree to disagree....but they will be left with a reappearing thought that somebody they trust is an avid gun owner that they care about and trust. This will eat at their intellectual mind until they fold internally to the “all guns are bad” belief.

The best argument is to ask them who supports a complete and total gun ban. The reason is that nobody supports a total gun ban. People support permission based gun ownership. They want to give permission to their friends and protectors while keeping guns from outsiders.
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Old July 29, 2018, 11:53 AM   #24
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Do some people hate/fear guns so much that "they wouldn't use a gun to save their own lives?"

Heck, even the Dali Lama said it would be okay to shoot back with a gun.
https://www.snopes.com/fact-check/dalai-gun/

But, while I suspect 99% of folk would defend themselves there's this person, San Felice who was at the office newspaper office in Annapolis when it was shot up.

Quote:
my dad, a retired homicide detective, joked about how I should have had a concealed carry weapon.
In the above article she replies how it wouldn't have done her any good.

https://www.inforum.com/opinion/colu...zette-shooting

Quote:
And there I was sitting under a desk texting my parents, telling them that I love them.
https://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry...b0f3c2219f72fd

So she's not frozen in fear by the shooting, but she'd rather be texting on her phone than shooting back with a gun. Is this reasonable???
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Old July 29, 2018, 12:17 PM   #25
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People who hate and fear firearms have an irrational fear of inanimate objects. It's an unnamed phobia that may be related to autism.
https://www.autismforums.com/threads...-objects.1969/
However, fearing inanimate objects and relating it to hunters isn't the same thing. Your student is probably afraid of the dark too. Most city dwellers, especially teenagers, are.
"...hoplophobia..." Isn't actually a real word.
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