Tonawanda News

July 10, 2013

What is the 'gun culture'?

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The Tonawanda News

Tonawanda News — In the nonstop coverage of the murder charges surrounding former New England Patriots tight end Aaron Hernandez, 2 words keep surfacing in all the sports talk radio banter: “gun culture.”

Citing the arrests of Hernandez and 28 other NFL players since the Super Bowl, as well as past indiscretions from the likes of Plaxico Burress (who infamously shot himself in the leg), the talkers go on about the “gun culture” that exists in professional football and how it has sentenced the league to death because fans are tired of following those who idolize guns.

“Gun culture” was the same pejorative incessantly thrown around by the media following the Sandy Hook massacre and Gabby Giffords shooting. It was and is used as an all-inclusive term to cover Americans’ interest in, ownership of and use of guns. It lumps in all good, conscientious gun owners — who represent nearly all of the 80 million gun owners in the US – with the 0.09 percent of gun owners, legal or otherwise, who, based on the most recent Center For Disease Control statistics, use weapons to commit crimes every year.

The common use of the phrase “gun culture” is a logically and morally bankrupt stereotype that incorrectly emphasizes the statistically-limited misuse of guns to paint the remaining 99.91 percent as corrupted souls just one bad day away from unleashing mass shootings of their own.

It’s silly because the true “gun culture”, which I proudly admit to being a part of, is so different than that posed by the supposed intellectuals of our time. Gun ownership and usage represents a positive culture to my family, friends, neighbors, and coworkers, just as it does for all Americans who are engaged with or support our Second Amendment. We use guns to hunt wild game and fill our freezers, providing sustenance to our families. We own guns to protect those same families from degenerates who have no respect for people or property. We shoot guns as a means to develop discipline and an outlet to relax.

Nowhere within that real “gun culture” is it acceptable to indiscriminately use guns to threaten or kill people. Within our culture it is completely unacceptable to even ponder the use of guns in those manners. Those actions are only used as the legitimate default responses to the threats posed by a burglar, robber or rapist.

But, the mass media would like to have the 233 million who don’t own guns to think otherwise. They’ve never met a gun or gun owner they didn’t hate. They’d like you to believe that the mainstream “gun culture” is dominated by the likes of Hernandez, Adam Lanza, and Jared Loughner. They are made to be the faces of gun ownership, rather than you and your neighbor – the true faces of gun ownership in America.

It’s agenda-driven reporting and analysis for news and talk outlets to default to their corrupted version of the “gun culture.” They want the guns out of the peoples’ hands, and solely in the government’s.

They would prefer that our people be emasculated, lacking strength, will, liberty and self-sufficiency.

It’s also the ultimate cop-out for the talking heads to throw around an improper definition of “gun culture.” It’s a simple way out of discussing the deeper issues and causes of society’s ills – the things that breed our killers, abusers, and such. The press would rather ignore the various subcultures within our nation like the gang/inner city culture, the drug culture (both recreational and prescribed), the entitlement culture, the bastard culture and the biggest one, pop culture itself.

It seems to me when you ponder their influences and outcomes, the “gun culture” is the least of our worries.

Gasport resident Bob Confer also writes for the New American magazine at TheNewAmerican.com. Follow him on Twitter @bobconfer