Monday, August 20, 2012

Gun owners get religion when in the pew…and other gun rights nausea

Yet another poll was taken after the recent Aurora, Colo. and Sikh temple shootings focusing on the attitudes of religious groups.  Released on August 15, and taken by the Public Religion Research Institute conducted in partnership with Religion News Service, there was hands-down agreement: no guns in church.  76% said no to concealed weapons there compared to only 20% who wanted them.  So what happens to the fanatical gun nuts when they go to pray?

One determined gun bubba
In my mind, this is the epitome of hypocrisy since it is the goal of the National Rifle Assn. (NRA), and its members, to make guns available to anyone who wants them, and make it legal for them to take them anywhere they want to.  Not once have I heard from NRA head, Wayne LaPierre, that he wants an open carry policy on firearms, except, of course, when you go to church.  That would mean capitulation, something the NRA has absolutely no appetite for.

In the religious study 54% of these households own one or more guns, compared to the fact that 76% of church-goers who want no weapons in their church.  But this is not so in evangelical congregations; only 35% are in favor of gun control, compared to 52% of all Americans.  Overall, less than one-third of U.S. households own a gun, a figure that has been regularly dropping over the years.

On the other hand, 62% of Catholics and 60% of those unaffiliated believe in gun control.  The Rev. James Martin, a Jesuit priest, thinks he knows why Catholics lean toward gun control, the most obvious reason being that many of them live in urban areas where a lot of the gun violence takes place.  He also surmises that in Catholics, “…there might be a slightly greater appreciation for the notion of the common good, which is enshrined in Catholic social teaching, in addition to individual rights.”

Idiot pastor encourages members to bring guns to church:

The urban concept reappears when looking at Black Protestants who definitely favor more gun control by 71%.  White mainline Protestants drop to only 42% for more gun control, possibly due to the fact that 54% of this group lives in a household with a gun.  But those households without a gun prefer more gun restrictions.  According to the Economic Times, part of the problem for these fanatical gun owners is the mythology that surrounds the issue.

And that, in turn, is supported in the “madness” of the trumpeted legal foundation of the 2nd Amendment, says Bennett Voyles in the ET.

Eliot Spitzer, former New York attorney general and governor, says in a recent Miami Herald article, the government can limit guns immediately.  He adds that New York mayor Michael Bloomberg could do the same.  And he explains clearly how it could be done.  Use the government’s power in the marketplace.  As the largest purchaser of guns, the feds can say to gun manufacturers that they would not:

“…buy any weapons or ammunition from companies that do not agree to pull semi-automatics from their stock and refuse to produce magazines with more than 10 rounds other than for sale to the government.

To begin with, that would show gun companies that the feds are in control of the firearms market, not the National Rifle Assn, (NRA).  Secondly, it would prove that the NRA does not have the power over gun rights that they claim to have and might curb some of the financial support weapons manufacturers provide the organization.  Left with only its members’ dues to exist on, the NRA would soon be out of business or at least left ineffective.

Would John Wayne carry his gun to church?
Delaware Gov. Jack Markell, a Democrat, doesn’t think Congress or the White House will do anything about gun violence before November.  In an article, “Everyone looks at the United States as uncivilized,” Markell takes credit for standing up to the NRA and then beating them at their own game passing gun regulations in Delaware.  He agrees with other studies that say the gun lobby’s influence over Congress is exaggerated.

But let’s return to the title of the article Markell appears in, the part about everyone looking at the U.S. as uncivilized.  “Everyone,” of course, means the rest of the world, and the overall opinion is that America loves its guns over human life.  As an example, the Bashar al-Assad regime in Syria has slaughtered thousands; UN estimates number between 17,000 and 20,000.  If you have followed media coverage, you know that the world is calling Assad uncivilized.

I did a post last week, “Why is the NRA so much like Al Qaeda?” which points out the comparison between Osama bin Laden and the NRA’s head, Wayne LaPierre.  Bin Laden wanted to kill as many Americans as possible, no matter what.  LaPierre wants to sell as many guns as possible, no matter what, which is indirectly responsible for 31,347 firearm deaths a year equaling 10.2 deaths per 100,000 population. 

The similarities are frightening which further confirms why America is being called uncivilized by much of the world.

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