The argument, exemplified recently by Samuel Wurzelbacher, a.k.a. “Joe the Plumber,” that gun control led to the Holocaust and other government sponsored atrocities would be amusingly ironic if it wasn’t so frighteningly prevalent. The anti-intellectualism that brought him to fame is a significantly greater factor of how those things occurred than is any measure of gun control.
People are asked for identification when buying decongestants, but no one fears that the government is going to take them away from people that aren’t abusing them. Owning and operating automobiles requires licensing and insurance, but no one is afraid that the government is going to come along and take cars away from people that have not shown themselves to be a danger to others. But even the slightest bit of regulation, monitoring, or accountability in regards to guns, which by definition are WEAPONS and serve no other purpose than to shoot things, is met with howls that everyone’s guns are going to be taken away. No one, except some extremists on the left which are being completely and utterly ignored, is advocating taking away every single gun. That option hasn’t been seriously discussed within my lifetime, it’s not part of the so-called “liberal agenda,” and the only people that think it is are the ones that are truly out of touch.
Taking a step back from that level of extremist reaction, we see that the same people that claim any sort of gun regulation is harmful to lawful guns owners are often the same ones against government provided financial aid to individuals because some people abuse it. The cognitive dissonance at play here is staggering. On one hand they claim the government can’t in any way regulate an elective item because it makes things marginally more difficult for people that want to obtain them, while on the other hand they don’t want to provide aid to anyone that genuinely needs it because some people have abused it. Boiled down further, in one instance they are against inconveniencing the innocent despite the real and present dangers that creates, but in another case they are in support of hurting the innocent to keep the unscrupulous from possibly benefiting.
There is no reasoning with people that are able to so passionately hold onto such incongruous thought patterns. It’s no longer a question of anti-intellectualism but actual non-intellectualism. These people are refusing to think about their own thoughts, and that’s as scary as things get.