by Justin Thyme, a GSL member
“Guns are killing our young people at an alarming rate.” I read this quote in a newspaper. Twenty-five years ago.

Blaming an inanimate object for the deeds of an evil-doer is oftentimes nothing more than psychological deflection. The message of the anti-gun crowd is simple, really. They can’t ban evil people, so they settle for pretending that a ban on guns will stop evil. “If we just eliminated the guns, things like this wouldn’t happen.”

Level-headed people understand that inanimate objects don’t act on their own. Those of us who understand guns know that you can have a loaded gun in the nightstand, or in the closet or on your hip. It will never “go off” or fire without human input.

When it comes to guns used against people, we have to understand the intention of the user. In the hands of a criminal, that gun can be a deadly weapon. In the hands of a law-abiding person, that same gun might be considered a life preserver. The unchanging circumstance of these situations is that the firearm itself is not to blame. The gun is simply the implement.

It is the person using the tool that bears the responsibility for the actions he or she takes. In cases of justifiable self-defense or defense of another, the motivation is to protect or preserve life.

Sometimes there is no ill intent – it’s an accident and negligence is to blame.

Other times, an evildoer’s impulses of hatred, anger or jealousy motivates the criminal misuse of guns. That’s for the attorneys to argue and the courts to adjudicate accordingly.

Yet, we are left to ponder – where do evil desires originate?

“The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked: who can know it?” Jer 17:9 KJV

“Keep your heart with all diligence; for out of it are the issues of life…” Prov 4:23 KJV

“There are six things the Lord hates… a heart that devises wicked plans, feet that make haste to run to evil, a false witness who breathes out lies, and one who sows discord among brothers.” Prov 6:16a, 18-19 ESV

The evil we see in our country is a product of undermining our nation’s foundation. We, as a nation, need to embrace our founding principles and a return to the values upon which our nation was built.

There was a time in our country in generations past where, generally, people treated others with civility, respect and courtesy. Neighbors lent a helping hand and looked out for one another. Good character and responsibility were instilled in the young. Do unto others as you’d have them do unto you was often the order of the day. Good will toward all.

This, in itself, would bring a more peaceful lifestyle. After all, an armed society is a polite society for many reasons, not just the fact that the only thing that stops a bad person with evil in their hearts and minds is a good guy with a gun.