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Old 06-12-2019, 02:07 PM
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Lamoral is offline
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Originally Posted by Cheesesteak View Post
The hurdle we can't jump is gun culture. Our existing gun culture means that it's politically impossible to pass sweeping reform, and even if you did, large numbers of owners would refuse to follow the law. It's not that we can't collect and destroy 400 million guns (because 400 million is too big a number), it's that tens of millions of gun owners will actively try to prevent a gun ban from working.
I think this is true, and I would compare the gun culture in America to religion. No, not in the sense that everyone who owns guns "worships" them, though there's definitely a subset of gun owners who are overly obsessed with guns, but even among those people, most of them never actually wind up firing a weapon "in anger". In the sense that it equates to "a very strongly held belief that has existed for a really long time and is passed down through the generations."

So imagine the "gun culture vs. different countries" argument in terms of a religion. Imagine that Japan wanted to ban the Islamic religion. Leave aside the idea that it's wrong to ban a religion - imagine that they just wanted to do this. Could they do it? Probably. There are almost no Muslims in Japan. It's not something that the average person there has any stake in. It's not part of that country's history.

Now imagine that India wanted to ban the Islamic religion. While it is not the dominant religion there, 14% of India's population is Muslim, amounting to 172 million people - in fact, the largest population of Muslims in the world outside of countries whose population is majority Muslim. Do you think that would work? Hell no, and not just because those 172 million people would object to it. Islam has a long history in India. There have been large numbers of Muslims there for hundreds of years.

Gun ownership is sort of like a religion. Leave the objects themselves, the guns, out of it for the sake of this argument - it's a deeply held belief about something. Large numbers of Americans hold that belief. That belief has been part of the country's history from the very beginning. And it's been passed down over the generations, and there's also an entire economy supporting it which has existed for a long time.

This is why America is unlike other countries of the world when it comes to this particular issue, and comparisons to them are never really strong debating points.