Perspectives: Gun control, the state lacks moral judgment


OPINION – My friend’s chihuahua certainly meant well. Any time someone knocked on the Simpson family’s door, Tiny went into full attack mode.

He’d race to the door, bug-eyed and frothing, carrying on as if a herd of escaped convicts riding grizzly bears were headed for the house.

For the person standing outside the door, it was almost a compliment to see Tiny’s overreaction. You could hear the growing desperation in each yap until the door was opened and the visitor invited inside, at which point Tiny would suddenly compose himself.

No doubt the little dog thought he was doing the right thing. After all, he was simply acting as a protector and instinctively responding to the stimulus of the doorbell ringing.

I was vividly reminded of Tiny’s antics as I watched the Pavlovian reactions to the headlines about the shootings at an Orlando night club. As expected, the gun control advocates were by far the most unhinged.

Like Tiny, they tended to react dogmatically in the only way they knew how. Their shrill demands and overreaction were fueled primarily by emotion and an instinctive reaction to certain media buzz words.

However, unlike the dog, rabid gun control advocates seldom find the rationality to compose themselves. With their enablers in the press urging them on, they simply continue to wear themselves out barking and spinning in circles.

They likely begin with good intentions, just like Tiny did. But somewhere along the way, they lose sight of the bigger picture and what is actually at stake.

Most importantly, they cannot be taken seriously because they lack the critical quality of moral authority in what they are urging.

Individuals who claim to be against self-loading, military-pattern rifles in the hands of the populace have a curious blind spot when it comes to such firearms in the hands of agents of the state.

They claim that such rifles are “weapons of war” and are only useful for “killing large amounts of people quickly.” But is that really the case?

Somehow, a so-called “assault weapon” is magically transformed into a noble instrument of defense when wielded by someone wearing the state’s costume.

The fact that such rifles have legitimate utility for defense of home or community should also mean that this application reaches beyond law enforcement. Rugged, dependable defensive firearms create the necessary parity of force to end a murderous rampage.

That means the primary responsibility for defending innocent life falls first to those who are actually on the scene. After all, law enforcement is seldom at the scene the moment a deadly attack is launched.

To those for whom the assumption of such personal responsibility is unthinkable, there is an unspoken distrust of the common people who make up our communities. They are demonstrating a clear tendency to confuse firearms proficiency and perceived professionalism with moral judgment.

As Jeff Snyder wrote 22 years ago following the bloody misbehavior of law enforcement at Waco and Ruby Ridge:

The responsible use of firearms depends precisely on sound and moral judgment, and no republic is founded or stands upon the notion that the government possesses and exercises moral judgment superior to that of the people.

All one has to do is examine the well-documented genocides of the 20th century to discover that no one kills with more efficiency or abandon than lawless governments. Preceding each genocide, laws were passed that carefully disarmed the targeted groups.

That can only happen when blind, unquestioning trust is placed in government rather than in the character and personal responsibility of the people.

This is why gun control advocates lack moral authority to call for disarming the public in the name of safety. They seek to deprive the innocent of liberty without due process.

There have always been evil individuals who have used whatever means were available to inflict harm on others. Renouncing liberty in a misguided attempt to prevent anything bad from happening again is criminally short-sighted.

The mania to regulate others is what makes gun control advocates behave like my friend’s dog every time someone came to the door. Except what they’re doing isn’t just annoying and counterproductive, it’s dangerous.

They’d be a lot happier if they took their inner control freak and dropped it down a well. We might even find some common understanding in the idea that we live in an imperfect world. Justice takes place after a wrong is done.

Bad things will happen. Evil will occur.

The best we can do is to be the kind of individuals who do not allow these things to come into the world through our actions.

Bryan Hyde is a news commentator, radio host and opinion columnist in Southern Utah. The opinions stated in this article are his and not representative of St. George News.

Email: [email protected]

Twitter: @youcancallmebry

Copyright St. George News, LLC, 2016, all rights reserved.

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  • Real Life June 20, 2016 at 10:12 am

    This will get everyone going. The three G’s that really kick the hornet’s nest. God, guns, and gays.

    • .... June 21, 2016 at 8:40 am

      Can’t you see the irony in your comment ?

      • Real Life June 21, 2016 at 11:49 am

        Did they up your medication this week? You are definetly on some good stuff.

  • godisdead June 20, 2016 at 12:37 pm

    “The bloody misbehavior of law enforcement at Waco and Ruby Ridge”?
    So, mr. Hyde, you are saying that the occupants at Waco (the self-proclaimed prophet David Koresh, a cult leader who raped children, dissolved families, preached anti-government propaganda, and armed his cult to battle the government), was in the right? The anti-government Ruby Ridge occupants were also armed and provoked the government to respond to their claim that the United States had no authority over them or their actions (anti-government sovereignty).
    If you are “the speaker of the truth”, tell us what you really think. I’m guessing you support the Bundy clan, and their criminal intent to defraud American citizens, steal property, threaten government officials (with weapons), and promote insurrection within our U.S. borders.
    This IS a problem in our country – guns. We can do something about it without preventing you from protecting you family and property.
    Another problem in our country are wack jobs like you, who feed others with fear and hate.

    • Lastdays June 20, 2016 at 9:03 pm

      You need to brush up on Ruby Ridge facts. An undercover government agent set up Randy Weaver by selling him a shotgun then talking him into sawing it off. The agent had him cut it just shy of being legal. He then arrested him for that action. Then court dates were mixed up and they came after him which resulted in a shoot out. The Weavers were only anti government “after” being misled and set up. But, research it yourself.

  • Bob June 20, 2016 at 2:33 pm

    i haven’t been following the homosexual night club shooting lately, but the story just seems so unbelievable. One lone angry muslim goes in and blows up 100 gay men, killing 50 of them? i just don’t buy it at all. A lot of people think the gov’t actually orchestrates these types of events in an effort to create the anti-gun sentiment in the media to then step up policy to erode the right to self-protection and gun rights. i thought it was kooky at first, but looking at the other things the gov’t has pulled off, i really wouldn’t be at all surprised. i also wouldn’t be at all surprised if (god forbid) the next shooting is an elementary school with a death count far higher than the one in 2012. Whether it’ll be muslims or another “autistic” loon is unpredictable. Our gov’t seems to have no qualms about killing unlimited people all over the mid-east. i wouldn’t be surprised if they tried something within our own borders in an effort to take away even more freedoms. with the record of morality that “our” leadership already has it wouldn’t be much of a stretch.

    • Curtis June 21, 2016 at 4:20 pm

      I would not go as far as you, but remember Fast and Furious. BATF deliberately let firearms — including “assault rifles” — to be purchased and cross into Mexico for drug cartels. Resulting carnage could be traced to weapons coming from the US. Would validate Obama administration demands for greater gun control. One of those firearms was used to kill a USA law enforcement official. I believe other such weapons have also been found in the US involving the drug trade.

      • Bob June 21, 2016 at 9:54 pm

        and this is just what they’ve been caught doing. that probably is nothing compared to what they get away with. imagination’s the limit

  • Bob June 20, 2016 at 2:37 pm

    LOL, then again, probably shouldn’t even type such things. They might put me on the nsa’s “no fly list” or just “black van” me in the middle of the night, LOLL. But really tho, if we know muslims want to blow us up, why is the gov’t importing them here by the hundreds of thousands each year?

  • Bob June 20, 2016 at 2:42 pm

    we already have unlimited illegals that flow in from the southern border. why do we all these muslims imports coming in. we know hussein obama wants all this “diversity”, but what is the point when the “diversity” wants to blow us all up “allahu akbar” style. /end rant… LOL

  • Bender June 20, 2016 at 3:33 pm

    Hyde’s gun fetish surpassed only by his Ayn Rand fetish.

  • r2d2 June 20, 2016 at 5:35 pm

    Well said Brian. “Those who fail to learn from history are doomed to repeat it”.

  • Curtis June 21, 2016 at 4:34 pm

    Generally agree with column except in two instances.

    1. Although they may lack moral authority I certainly do take serious the demands of the yapping gun control advocates. I don’t understand why anyone interested in retaining an effective constitutionally guaranteed right to keep and bear arms would not take them seriously. There is a very good chance Clinton will be elected President. If so she is also likely to have a Democratic Senate and more House members if not a majority. A Democratic Senate means a more sympathetic Supreme Court. Read Clinton’s proposals for “gun safety” and you’ll be very concerned about the yapping gun control advocates.

    2. Not everyone who gave up their guns prior to a genocide did so because of a blind, unquestioning trust in govt. Many did so because it was a choice of willingly giving up their guns or having them taken from cold, dead fingers.

    • Bob June 21, 2016 at 10:02 pm

      aipac and the other zionists want a full gun ban a seizure. the might have it in a few years

      • Bob June 21, 2016 at 10:02 pm

        for america that is, not israel

      • Curtis June 22, 2016 at 10:10 am

        There will certainly be demands for a full gun seizure and attempts to enact it. I doubt it would succeed during a Clinton administration. Clinton is nothing if not pragmatic. She doesn’t need a full gun seizure when she can incrementally destroy our ability use firearms — in particular watch for restrictions on the availability of ammunition including background checks, accounting for rounds fired and exorbitant increases in excise taxes.

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