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Why the Gun is civilization - an essay by Marko Kloos

Discussion in 'General Firearm Discussion' started by Cougfan2, Jan 26, 2011.

  1. Cougfan2

    Cougfan2 Hillsboro, OR Well-Known Member

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    The following is an essay I saw on THR. Initially it was incorrectly attributed to a Marine named Caudwell. Some pretty compelling logic.

    why the gun is civilization.
    March 23, 2007
    by Marko Kloos
    .Human beings only have two ways to deal with one another: reason and force. If you want me to do something for you, you have a choice of either convincing me via argument, or force me to do your bidding under threat of force. Every human interaction falls into one of those two categories, without exception. Reason or force, that’s it.

    In a truly moral and civilized society, people exclusively interact through persuasion. Force has no place as a valid method of social interaction, and the only thing that removes force from the menu is the personal firearm, as paradoxical as it may sound to some.

    When I carry a gun, you cannot deal with me by force. You have to use reason and try to persuade me, because I have a way to negate your threat or employment of force. The gun is the only personal weapon that puts a 100-pound woman on equal footing with a 220-pound mugger, a 75-year old retiree on equal footing with a 19-year old gangbanger, and a single gay guy on equal footing with a carload of drunk guys with baseball bats. The gun removes the disparity in physical strength, size, or numbers between a potential attacker and a defender.

    There are plenty of people who consider the gun as the source of bad force equations. These are the people who think that we’d be more civilized if all guns were removed from society, because a firearm makes it easier for a mugger to do his job. That, of course, is only true if the mugger’s potential victims are mostly disarmed either by choice or by legislative fiat–it has no validity when most of a mugger’s potential marks are armed. People who argue for the banning of arms ask for automatic rule by the young, the strong, and the many, and that’s the exact opposite of a civilized society. A mugger, even an armed one, can only make a successful living in a society where the state has granted him a force monopoly.

    Then there’s the argument that the gun makes confrontations lethal that otherwise would only result in injury. This argument is fallacious in several ways. Without guns involved, confrontations are won by the physically superior party inflicting overwhelming injury on the loser. People who think that fists, bats, sticks, or stones don’t constitute lethal force watch too much TV, where people take beatings and come out of it with a bloody lip at worst. The fact that the gun makes lethal force easier works solely in favor of the weaker defender, not the stronger attacker. If both are armed, the field is level. The gun is the only weapon that’s as lethal in the hands of an octogenarian as it is in the hands of a weightlifter. It simply wouldn’t work as well as a force equalizer if it wasn’t both lethal and easily employable.

    When I carry a gun, I don’t do so because I am looking for a fight, but because I’m looking to be left alone. The gun at my side means that I cannot be forced, only persuaded. I don’t carry it because I’m afraid, but because it enables me to be unafraid. It doesn’t limit the actions of those who would interact with me through reason, only the actions of those who would do so by force. It removes force from the equation…and that’s why carrying a gun is a civilized act.
    SigShooter232 likes this.
  2. orygun

    orygun West Linn Bronze Supporter Bronze Supporter

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    Impressive and nicely stated.

    I think the quote goes like this, "God didn't make men equal. Colonel Colt did"!:thumbup:
    DuneHopper likes this.
  3. Swedish K

    Swedish K SW Washington Moderator Staff Member

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    Nothing like writing an entire essay on the premise of "God made man but Sam Colt made them all equal" - or any of the variations on this fine Colt ad campaign slogan. Well said though.
  4. strong_epoxy

    strong_epoxy Washington New Member

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    Human beings only have two ways to deal with one another: reason and force.

    I'd include payment (money) and sex in the list... That lessens the force of the initial assertion, but not the rest of the essay.
  5. chris61182

    chris61182 A little west of Portland Active Member

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    That's just a subset of reason, but it does make the benefit aspect of reason a little more blatant.
  6. atypicalparkie

    atypicalparkie sowfeast poetland, ohraygun Member

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    Excellent. I'd be the same optimistic, friendly person whether or not I carried-- but I do carry, everywhere, every day. I was an optimistic, friendly person years ago when I got the crap beat out of me & robbed in a country that doesn't allow citizens to carry or even own handguns, but the capital city of that country is now the gun murder capital of Europe. The drug gangs & other thugs there have no problems getting handguns. I'd be the first to admit that in that instance I was drunk, alone in the bad part of town I lived in, and had stupidly compromised my safety as a result. I chalked it up to painful experience...

    Only a few weeks later, I was still an optimistic and friendly (but poorer!) person when I got a more severe beating in a different capital city... this time because I dared to speak the old native (but now minority) language to the wrong group of jerks. Wasn't robbed, they were just out for kicks, literally, under a thin veneer of asserting their own political/tribal identity. For quite some time after that, I was neither happy nor optimistic :laugh: sometime ya gotta laugh or you lose your mind... and knowing that my friends there had been through much worse sure made me reconsider a lot of things.

    2 years after those incidents & back home in the States, I'd decided that I wasn't going to be an easy victim again. I'm still optimistic and friendly but I walk slowly with a cane & 'don't look like a person who'd carry a gun' :rolleyes:. My drunk days are long over & I've talked my way out of some sketchy situations-- both before and since I've been cc'ing. I've never had to draw and hope I never do. But if I have no other choice, I don't think I'll hesitate. I pray my decisions made in such a situation will be correct, so do well all I reckon. So we practice and pay attention to our surroundings and intuition, even if our friends and family may not...

    Long before I started carrying, I gradually became a lot more aware of my surroundings and stopped taking the stupid chances I used to. I pay closer attention to my body language and not seeming like an easy mark, without resorting to aggro posturing. I know that carrying means accepting responsibilities that I previously wasn't mature enough to handle. But it is true, where I can carry, I always will. Sometimes our reason, logic, optimism and calm demeanor will not be enough. I'll remain friendly and optimistic, attentive and aware, with the added knowledge that I have additional tools to help keep my self & my loved ones safer.

    Thanks for posting that, Cougfan2!! Jeesh I've been long-winded as usual...I should shut up now and go to bed :laugh:
    SigShooter232 likes this.
  7. 2A2Dend

    2A2Dend .. Well-Known Member

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    I thought the topic worthwhile of waking.
  8. erudne

    erudne The Pie Matrix PPL Say Sleeping W/Your Rifle Is A bad Thing? Bronze Supporter

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    Beer is the founding technology of civilization