Monday, January 23, 2012

An armed society is...

*NOT* a polite society.

According to the Murky News: "Six people, including several teens, were rushed to the hospital Saturday night after an argument at a sweet 16 party led to gunfire. Investigators said 30 to 40 partygoers were in the home's garage when an argument started. The dispute escalated to the point that people pulled out guns and began firing. Police said "multiple" guns were involved and "numerous" shots were fired."

Folks: Robert Heinlein wrote *FICTION*. Heinlein himself admitted that the intention of his works was to get beer money, not to create any grand philosophical statements. Libertarians who view his works as gospel are viewing works that the author admitted were just paid lies as gospel, which makes those libertarians, well, either gullible or stupid. Reality is that an armed society is no more polite than any other society. It's just that in an armed society when folks get irate, they start plugging at each other with firearms rather than with fists.

- Badtux the Reality-based Penguin


  1. I think we've already tried the "Armed Society" and found that it only worked well for the outlaws and not the law abiding citizens. It was called the wild west.
    Most of the gun toting wanna be johnny bad asses would run crying to their mommies if anyone ever did start shooting at them for real. Besides if they feel a need to tote a gun, then join the army.

  2. I think it is ok to explore ideas in fiction and also to use fiction to kind of map out possibilities. I have certainly been heavily influenced by works of fiction myself especially works like 1984, Brave New Word, Handmaid's Tale, and the like. But I am with you when it comes to people who have trouble distinguishing between a work of fiction and reality especially when they cite works of fiction as evidence to support their arguments (unless they are using the work to illustrate a point, a fine line I know)

    I find myself in an odd position when it comes to guns. I don't really mind it that a lot of my neighbors have them because they simply are not the sort of people who would ever use a gun to settle an argument. But I am against the second amendment on the grounds that "arms" is kind of vague and there are some weapons I don't think private citizens should have.

  3. There's no such thing as a polite society, never has been. It's my opinion that you should never show up at a fight with just a knife when a gun is more effective.

    Of course I avoid parties like that.

  4. Dave, there actually were relatively few firearms in the "Wild West", and most towns banned firearms within city limits (in fact, that's what the famed "Gunfight at the OK Corral" was about -- illegal firearms within city limits). TV Westerns are *not* true to history, the average cowboy, for example, did *not* pack a six-gun on his hip -- if he was going to be solo where there was wildlife he might pack a Winchester lever action rifle in a scabbard, but that's it, because a Winchester lever action could be used for hunting food for the pot, while a six-gun was just useful as a hammer most of the time.

    That said, we have plenty of examples showing that firearms don't make a society any politer. And putting firearms into the hands of hormone-filled teenagers is a recipe for disaster. About all you can say about firearms is that in a home invasion type scenario, I'd much rather have a firearm than not have a firearm. But given how many of these "home invasions" turn out to be SWAT teams invading the wrong address, even that's a mixed blessing nowadays.

    BBC, you don't avoid parties, you're simply never invited to them. Just sayin ;).

    - Badtux the "Guns don't change people" Penguin

  5. Up here in Pugetopolis a group of armed New Year revelers opened up on each other, leaving several critically injured and one on the lam until he shot and killed a ranger at Mt Rainier National Park.

    Nothing polite there.

  6. There's something about Heinlein's writing that makes people:

    1. Believe that his characters' beliefs are Heinleins;


    2. Believe that that reasoning is 100% correct in all societies, in all situations.

  7. Nan, there are two reasons I think Heinlein's characters are speaking Heinlein's opinions. The characters say the same things in all the novels, and Heinlein's nonfiction has the same themes.

  8. I'm quite sure Heinlein spoke what he believed through his characters and his story lines.

    I'm also quite sure he would have been a great guy to have a beer with.

    Ans he had great, strong female characters - in SF more than 60 years ago - Wow!

    But his libertarian politics sucked rocks, and they still do.



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