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January 24, 2013

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A fellow Continental

Ah, my friend, I am very glad to read this response, and the spirit in which it is shared is beyond any doubt. Rest assured it was not something that was said in cups, or even a single RP from a single friend, but rather a number of the sort of communications that made me aware that a group of my friends are very defensive and turning inward in defense of gun ownership since Newtown and that group does not include me. Some of these are friends I greatly value, and while I do not think there was something expressed by you that left me cold yours is one of the friendships that truly matters. Hence, this post about a struggle with a medium that simplifies assumptions, and a desire for a different conversation. I am sure I do not have it all worked out, and know enough of lawmaking to anticipate that whatever emerges will be imperfect and have unanticipated consequences.

I also believe that people who hold very different political philosophies can often agree on a shared problem even if they come to different conclusions about the solution. We have a problem with the lethality of modern firearms used in mass killings and we explain the causes differently. It is exactly for this reason that we need dialogue, the kind that makes us question our assumptions and may lead to reconfirmation or to a new perspective on a way forward, rather than a smug and self reenforcing response that only those who agree with us will find appealing. Bottom line is I am your friend in life as well as on Facebook, and friendship asks us to work harder. It will be worth it. Thanks very much for your response.

A Continental

God, I was afraid this was about something I hastily RT'd earlier (and maybe it partly is, just not the something I had in mind). So, let's talk next time. Although, I tend to get heated face-to-face as well. Will you permit me the liberty to make a couple points here as placeholder to that conversation?

First, the firearm used in Newtown was not "legally obtained". The shooter stole it (and murdered the legal owner). I don't know a whole lot of details, but I am pretty sure of that. Unless CT law considers him to have been a part-owner because he lived there (or did she give them as a gift?).


Next, I'm glad you mentioned the 27 changes to the Constitution. A lot of us, thought we may not express it well, believe that the proposed laws violate the Constitution, and that the next step then is to propose changes to the Constitution. Now, I doubt many of us would like any proposed changes, but at least we'd feel the rules of the game were not being subverted. To many of us right-wingers, the actions of our opponents appear to reflect a concern to achive their policy preferences at all costs, with little regard to the letter of the law: pass whatever you can, and get the judges to rule for you if you can't get it past the legislature.

Finally, I'm sure you know we also would like to keep the children safer; but maybe we have evaluated the proposed restrictions and found that they actually have no bearing on the incidents they are intended to prevent.

I hope we will get more in-depth in person, before I get too far into my cups.

Cordially,
A friend

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