Guns & the NRA
Guns & the NRA
Yohanes Handojo: Why get rid of guns? Like we already have them. Other people havealready. You know, I’m not going to sacrifice my now for other people’s future. And I think that’s, that’s the reason people think like that in America.
José Cruz: So you’re you’re thinking that in general the the the psychological uh, environment of America um, at this point is still pretty similar to what it was before and it’s it’s not conducive to letting people see uh uh the rationality of giving up these weapons.
Yohanes: Yeah yeah (Right?) and it’s it’s more like because they put so much value in instant gratification, they don’t think about the future. They don’t think about- You know, it- When I- when I came here and people actually have different trash cans for different things…
José: Ah me too! My house too!
Yohanes: Different um- and and you know uh, you take out the- these trashes (oh the separation of the garbage) Yeah right right right. And that’s completely inconvenient. That is totally inconvenient. For- Ha ha. And and I see your face right now.
José: I’m de- yeah, I’m listening. I’m listening.
Yohanes: It it’s- and and the reason I think that is because, in America you just throw away everything (You don’t do that) Nobody (That’s right) nobody does that. Um sure you um you take out the trash and you know there’s like cardboard and there’s recyclables, and stuff like that. But no one really does that. Like people don’t- people don’t bother themselves enough to do those things. And yet over here it’s a way of life. People actually do that.
José: But when you saw it, you go, “That’s a good idea!” Right?
Yohanes: That is a great idea!
José: See! Yeah see! But you’re thinking, so that’s the sort of thing that just wouldn’t take off in America? (Right) See that’s where I would disagree with you. Now let me explain why (OK) Um, I understand what you’re saying about you know, instant gratification and all of these psychological bases for, (Mm) for why America doesn’t want to give up these weapons. (Right) I mean honestly, you’ve probably been to a range and you’ve shot a gun, right? (No) You’ve never? Have you ever held a real gun in your hand? (Yes) OK It feels nice right? (Ha ha um) It makes you feel like, it’s almost sexy, right?
Yohanes: It is it is quite sexy actually. (Isn’t it) Yeah yeah.
José: And the the whole idea- I don’t know if it’s a phallic thing or whatever, but it’s um, it makes you feel power. It makes you feel psychologically powerful (Definitely definitely) So I think a lot of the things you’re talking about, I think, and this is where I think you and I can agree. Humans are humans (Yeah) and the concept of instant gratification and the problem of it isn’t unique to America.
Yohanes: And oh yeah yeah. Definitely definitely.
José: We we had the same problem in Canada (Mm hmm) and in Japan more so the problem here (Right) instant gratification. And yet somehow, in most of these G8 or G20 countries there were rational approaches to most problems. (Right) But if we’re only talking about guns- and it seems like America can be quite irrational, but it has rational answers to to a lot of other problems beyond guns, but (Right) why only guns? And if you ask yourself the question, “Whyguns the big problem?” You can look at it and say from a psych- you know a ’s point of view, (Yup) “Well psych- psychologically it’s this and this and that.” But (Mm) you’d have to be comparative and say well look at Canada, (Right yeah) do they have those same problems? (Right right right) They do. They do have those same problems. And we have the same number of people who probably would like to have the same kind of gun laws in Canada (Right) as you have in America but why don’t we have that problem? Well I look at that from the (Mm) point of view and you look at what changed in the last mm few decades (Right) to create the problem that you have now that you didn’t have (Yeah) back in (Yeah) you know, when the was just the Second Amendment (Yeah) uh and and you can find the answer probably around the, mid-sixties mid-seventies (Right) When finally realized, hey, you know, we can be this sportsman’s organization when we’re- (Right) The NRA used to lobby for gun control.
Yohanes: That is, that is quite interesting. Yeah.
José: Um they they used to say that we need stricter control of guns. Because you know, mentally retarded people shouldn’t have guns. (Yeah) Silencers? that’s crazy thing. People don’t need silencers. (Yeah) And now they’ve turned it completely around. (Yeah right) Well when did that happen? They were taken over by the gun industry. (Right) By by the moneyed interests.
Would a gun make you powerful?
Do you agree with the NRA slogan that, “Guns don’t kill people, people kill people”?
Note how José makes sure he understands Yohanes’ argument before he brings his counter argument. This style of discussion is called the “Steel Man Argument”.
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Guns & the NRA
José Domingo Cruz
Vancouver, British Columbia
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