5 Reasons why the Left Blames the Gun

Almost immediately after the attack in Las Vegas, some left-leaning politicians and  public figures pushed gun control as a solution to stopping mass violence. Some even tried to argue that Republicans and the NRA are responsible for these continuing tragedies. Here are 5 reasons why the left blames the gun:

  1. Political Points/Popularity/Ratings – Politicians, celebrities, entertainers, media, etc., are all quick to appeal to the populous by making emotional appeals to the gun control agenda in the wake of mass shootings. Regardless of how the individual feels about the issue, these appeals are easy points  for politicians and the media to garner public support. Of course, they can’t resist the opportunity to capitalize on a tragedy.
  2. To Hide the Government Failure – Apparently, Stephen Paddock bought his weapons legally. Many are quick to say that no one could have stopped this. But, wait… I thought the reason for mass surveillance on U.S. citizens was to prevent acts of terrorism and other mass murders like the one in Las Vegas. What good is all the police, military, intelligence, etc., funding if preventing attacks like this one is out of government’s hands? Of course, events hire private security inside the event. In the future, event producers shouldn’t assume the perimeter and nearby areas are secure even though the government is supposed to be responsible for security and defense.
  3. To Remove the Responsibility from Friends and Family – By blaming the gun, leftists can distance the debate from the idea that family plays a larger role in one’s life than the government. By blaming the gun, leftists somewhat remove the blame from the friends and family of the attacker. Whether friends and family ignored or missed warning signs, or if the attacker was influenced by an abusive or neglecting upbringing, blaming the gun puts these issues aside. There is no doubt that government policies have eroded the institution of family. Not only do welfare and other government policies lead to broken families, but children are forced to spend most of their day in government schools, away from family. Just as public school attempts to fill the family’s responsibility of raising children, gun control laws and others attempt to fill the individual’s responsibility of being responsible for themselves and their actions.
  4. To Promote Moral Relativism It is not enough that murder is illegal, we must ban guns as well! This is the implication when you promote moral relativism and deny an objective morality based on self-ownership. The left cannot say that murder is wrong and anyone who does it would face consequences. Rather, they go after the fact that the individual had the liberty to make the bad decision. Of course, most leftists will say that murder is immoral. However, the whole ideology is essentially predicated on the idea that violence is justified against peaceful individuals in certain situations. For example, some leftists will go as far as to say violence is justified to carry out the worker’s revolution and seize the means of production to be owned in common. More often, leftists say violence is justified in collecting taxes to from individuals. Another example is abortion. While most people recognize murder is wrong and that individuals must be held accountable, not the objects they use to carry out the murder, the left must blame the gun.
  5. Remove Responsibility from the Attacker – This ties in with numbers 2, 3, and 4. People on the left were talking about gun control long before any motive has been suggested. This skirts the responsibility from the shooter to the gun.

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The Real Economic Spectrum

The purpose of this article isn’t to redefine left and right, but to correctly identify the distinctions between the two and to put left and right in the appropriate context.

Left and right are largely misused in mainstream discussion and media. The left and right spectrum is an economic spectrum with opposite property norms. Starting in the center, moving left on the spectrum moves closer to communism or collective ownership of property. Again, starting in the center, moving right on the spectrum moves closer to capitalism or private ownership of property. Somewhere in the middle of the spectrum lies a mixture of the two that would describe the U.S. economic system.

With this understanding of the left and right as an economic spectrum, we can see that much of the rhetoric about the “far-right” doesn’t really have to do with being on the right at all. The mainstream refers to neo-conservatives like George W. Bush “right-wing” when there really isn’t much difference between his policies and Obama’s policies. Bush did no more to promote private property than Obama and actually infringed upon individual liberties and property rights on a historic level.
Another example of this is calling Donald Trump “right-wing” and grouping Nazi’s, white supremacists, and white nationalists all into the same category. Trump isn’t very different from Hillary Clinton, as he continues to demonstrate. He sounds like a progressive when he talks about creating jobs repairing infrastructure and building a giant wall. If he ran as a Democrat, the left would have embraced Trump’s big-government sympathies.

Some think of the right as socially conservative. Individuals on the right may be socially conservative or not, but the economic right (private property rights) in no way limits individual liberty. Rather, capitalism restricts the infringement on individual liberties. This is another distinction that is inherent due to the nature of each side’s respective property norms: left stands for collectivism while right stands for individualism. The left fights for the rights of groups or classes while the right fights for the rights of individuals.

The horrors of statism are only possibly when individuals in a society lose their individual rights and certain groups of people (politicians, bureaucrats, police, etc.) are somehow delegated the right to infringe upon the rights of everyone else. My intention isn’t to define libertarianism as right-wing for the sake of the right-wing, but to unify the philosophy of libertarianism under property rights and individual liberty. To be clear, Republicans and Democrats fall near the center of the spectrum. There is little, to no difference between the two parties and the Libertarian Party fails to effectively promote libertarianism as something very different from a mixture between the two parties. Only by restoring the sanctity of private property rights can liberty begin to overcome statism.

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