Sunday, 8 October 2017

Gun control would mean the end of the American moral project


My default setting, or rebuttable presumption, to use the lawyers' phrase, is that we English get things right and Americans don't as a rule. So it probably is with gun control. But the gun debate in the USA is about what sort of society America wants to be. It's a question that is existential for American society, as well as existential for people shot dead with legally acquired guns.

It's about the American attachment to rugged individualism and freedom as opposed to statism. Health care is similarly existential but less important because the Constitution does not forbid the US from enacting 'socialised medicine'. If America changed the Second Amendment to control guns the American moral project or American moral society will have ceased to be. Just as Eire ceased to be the Irish moral project when she legalised abortion. It would be the end of something absolutely fundamental, I think. 

One of my biggest fears is of how powerful states are getting. Austrian farmers were recently told they need gun licenses. Until a year or so ago they had not. There are innumerable other examples. Another thing I greatly fear is the huge growth of international law, which reduces the ambit of democratic decision making.


  1. "the American moral project"
    genocide, slavery, most and worst war crimes of all times (way worse than the Krauts)
    it somehow remembers the recent "eggs taxation" of MP Varujan Vosganian: pompous ineptitude

  2. It's already dead... the Constitution exists only on a piece of paper in a museum. What they have now is just a military dictatorship disguised in a beautiful non-existent Republic that died long time ago... only historians will tell when it did.