By Rob Morse: Opinion
USA —-(Ammoland.com)- A lot of labels have been thrown around in the last few weeks. We’ve seen the worst and best of human behavior. Each event is a snapshot. People see what they want to see, and then generalize from there.
Let’s look at the larger picture. The overwhelming evidence is right before our eyes.
- Heroes come in all sizes. Unlikely heroes helped flood victims after hurricanes. Tens of thousands of ordinary people stood up and helped people they’d never met before.
- Thousands of neighbors helped neighbors after fires in California.
- An unarmed usher defended his congregation from an armed murderer.
- Hundreds, perhaps thousands, of heroes risked their lives as they put their bodies in the way of bullets to protect people from the murderer in Las Vegas.
That is the good side.
We have also been called out as evil and corrupt. Again, talking about the mass murder in Las Vegas, we were told that all white men, and/or all NRA members, are mass murderers in waiting.
We saw corrupt Hollywood executives exposed as sexual abusers. There are now dozens of victims. Weinstein is only the tip of the iceberg and there are more abusers hiding under the surface.
So which is it? Are we good or evil?
The answer is yes. We are capable of all that and far more.
Our tremendous capacity turned neighbors into heroes when it rained on Texas and Florida. You can remember a few months ago when terrorists used trucks as weapons in Europe. The truck wasn’t evil; the evil was behind the steering wheel. In contrast, we used trucks to haul boats and supplies to flood ravaged areas.
The young man who had his concealed carry permit used his capacity for violence to save lives in his church. He had the same capacity for violence as the murderer, but he used his strength to save lives, not to take them. Evil doesn’t live in the holster.
Time after time, we see enormous benevolence and craven self-interests on display. We’ve heard politicians and celebrities say that guns should be confiscated, as if the evil that we do is embodied in our tools rather than our character. I wish virtue were that simple. We can wrap the appeal for disarmament in tearful emotion, but I’m not superstitious.
We can’t achieve virtue by casting-out plastic demons.
We heard these celebrities confess their motivation in a moment of honestly. “But we have to do something!” they said. We can complete the sentence for them. “I can’t stand this feeling of being helpless in the face of evil so we have to do something even if it is useless.” Our law books are filled with tens of thousands of gun regulations that don’t stop criminals.
We seize onto superstitious solutions because they feel good. They restore our feeling of control. We’ve seen celebrities and politicians say we should pass a new law..a law they admit wouldn’t have stopped the Las Vegas murderer. Doing things that won’t work simply because they make you feel better is the very definition of superstition.
So which is the right view of human nature? We saw human beings display enormous creativity..for good and for evil. We have millions of examples of virtue..and a dozen examples of vice.
We see human nature the way we want, even when the truth is in front of our nose. Only a few percent of us are dishonest, even in the worst parts of town. Evil never goes away, even in the best parts of town.
There are simple black and white answers, and they are wrong.
That is the human condition. We are wonderful, but can be evil. We’d best learn to live with it and see both sides.
About Rob Morse
The original article is here. Rob Morse writes about gun rights at Ammoland, at Clash Daily and on his SlowFacts blog. He hosts the Self Defense Gun Stories Podcast and co-hosts the Polite Society Podcast. Rob is an NRA pistol instructor and combat handgun competitor.