Artie wrote:You were my biggest ally in advocating the removal of whatever puritanical booze regulations still exist. Bring on the freedom (and another six-pack after 9pm)!
Sure I was.
My whole system of reasoning is different from yours.
I would like to direct our laws toward creating a better society. Part of that is removing pointless laws (like bar time) because they just breed disrespect of the legal structure as a whole and waste time and effort.
Better gun laws would help create a safer society if we wrote them right. That's what people want, you know. We don't like either continual mass murders or the endless single murders and we want to at least make them harder to commit and (maybe more to the point) easier to prevent. Part of that is removing the coolness factor along with the drama-queen factor. "I must protect my family" is missing an essential phrase, which is "...from gun accidents and misuse," and when enough statistics and facts emerge people will gradually come to realize where the actual threat lies. Legislation won't do the whole job, but it's part of the effort. Freedom to collect and work with data will help too.
Meantime, there's only a little similarity between gun laws and alcohol laws. Drunk driving (abuse of alcohol that threatens innocent people) and certain uses of guns (we have to decide where to draw that line) are one of the similarities. You can't carry open alcohol in your car. That's against the law even if you aren't drinking it, let alone driving having drunk it. Can you carry a loaded weapon on the street even if you aren't shooting it, let alone hitting anybody with the bullets? I don't know. There needs to be a discussion of what is acceptable, safe, and appropriate in various contexts. All we're doing now is shouting at one another.
I do not do my reasoning on big generalities (like "the fewer laws and the less government the better regardless of the results") but on specifics like "what does this law do, how is it applied, what are our goals, who is affected, and where can we reach consensus?"
I also do not treat the constitution like an unchangeable religious text. It should be reviewed and revised regularly -- through the courts, through the legislature, and through the voters. Some countries actually do this at scheduled intervals, maintaining a dynamic constitution that responds to changing social and technological reality.