Mark S. Fuller of Glouster, MA probably needs to bone up a little on his understand of what a civil right actually is. Thanks to Joe for the link to the piece, I’m directed to the screed by Mark himself which was run as a letter to the editor in the Glouster Times.
The entire letter is an excellent study in hoplophobia, a fundamental misunderstanding of American gun owners, and good old fashioned ad homenim attacks; most notably on Eric Thompson, the owner of TGSCOM.
But in the letter, there exactly two points I want to address, the foremost being this line right here:
The most basic civil right is that of being free from harm.
Whenever I read something like that, I immediately think directly to the post by Kevin at the Smallest Minority, where he quite accurately discusses that there is no right to be safe. At no place does the Constitution say that you have a right to be safe. The Declaration of Independence says all men have a right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness, but it doesn’t say anything about “being safe” or being “free from harm”.
What I would agree with is that no other human being has a right to do you harm, but that’s completely different from a right to be free from harm. But my question to Mark is that if you believe that you have a right to be safe, then who exactly is going to protect that right? The police, who when seconds count are only minutes away? Is he going to rely on his fellow citizens to protect him? Assuming (fallaciously) that you have a right to be “free from harm”, whose job is it exactly to ensure that right?
The simple answer is that it would be your responsibility. In fact, we should all know that the Supreme Court has ruled that the police have no obligation to provide for the safety of an individual, so that pretty much leaves you to ensure your imaginary right to be free from harm.
This is part where I’d normally ask the question about how you’d go about securing yourself from harm, but we all know it’s a rhetorical question anyway. The point is that even if such a right existed, it would come down to the individual to enforce that right.
The other point in the letter I want to bring out is at the very end, because honestly it doesn’t make any sense whatsoever.
These simple facts will enforce the standpoints of this essay:
NASCAR, NFL, NBA, ABL, NHL, WWE and UFC participants require no bullets. Country, rock ‘n’ roll, blues, rap, folk and classical music artists and their audiences require no bullets. Mall shoppers, students and commuters require no bullets. Paintball requires no bullets.
Golf, gardening, dancing, mountain climbing, skateboarding, boating, skiing, bicycling, walking, child birth, fiestas, paying taxes and voting — all require no bullets.
I might be prone to disagree that rappers don’t require bullets (I keed, I keed!), but what exactly does that prove other than there are a bunch of sports and hobbies that don’t involve shooting? Hunting, skeet shooting, Olympic rifle, and a whole mess of other sports and hobbies do require bullets (or shotgun shells); just pointing out a bunch of fun things you can do without firearms doesn’t actually prove any kind of point.
I actually that Mark S. Fuller of Glouster, MA sees this entry and responds to my question – if you had a right to be free from harm, who would secure that right for you?