(urth) The Politics Of Gene Wolfe
domus_artemis at hotmail.com
Tue Mar 17 20:00:13 PDT 2009
> Date: Tue, 17 Mar 2009 20:22:23 -0400
> From: brunians at brunians.org
> To: urth at lists.urth.net
> Subject: Re: (urth) The Politics Of Gene Wolfe
>>>> Well, beying an european, I'm going to abstain from commenting on the
>>>> particulars of your constitution and on your (US) views of this matter.
>>>> After all, the "Wild West" is too fresh on your mind and culture and
>>>> it's probably normal that these matters raise certain "passions"
>>>> among US citizens.
>>> Perhaps you would like to comment on the process of disarmament as it
>>> has taken place in Europe: of course you are aware that a hundred years
>>> ago anyone with sufficient funds could purchase a firearm in most
>>> European countries with a minimum of fuss, and that currently legal use
>>> of firearms is restricted to the employees of the various governments.
>>> How did it get to be that way?
>>> Why did it it get to be that way?
>>> What was the process by which it got to be that way?
>> I don't know. It's not a topic I ever researched.
> I'm sort of amazed that you didn't learn about it in school.
As I stated before, there was no clear, "general disarmament" in Western and Northern Europe like you seem to imply. If it was, and you seem convinced of it, please enlighten me. As I said before:
"There were some "unspoken" rules, I beleive. For the most part only the wealthy, the "gentleman", would have firearms without drawing attention from autorities. A "nobody" with a weapon would only get it randomly confiscated by autorities no matter if he actually bought it or not. It wasn't exactely the same situation as in the US, were pretty much everyone
could use one. I may be wrong though, so maybe someone here can elaborate on this topic"
>> What I can say is that
>> for us this question is pretty much mute. We don't have the discussions
>> you have regarding this matter. It's something that is widely accepted.
> Considering the historical frequency with which European governments tend
> to massacre the citizenry, domestic and foreign or portions thereof, I
> don't know if I would feel so blase about it as you folks mostly do seem
You are refering to what, when and where exactely? Anyway, having weapons at home woudn't solve the issue. At any point that we "folks" decided to mount an armed resistance there never seemed to be a particular difficulty in getting the weapons for it, so I think it's a mute point. Perhaps you believe that if those citizens were armed by default things would have gone diferently.
>> When I comment on the "Wild West" thing I mean that the state of affairs
>> on the US in the 19th century was quite a different one from Europe. The
>> world portrayed on Short Sun has more similarities to 19th US than Europe
>> (generaly speaking of course).
> Sure. I don't think it is all that relevant, but sure.
I was refering to the opinion that Gene Wolfe is a supporter of the "guns for everyone" position just by basing oneself in SS. Maybe he is, maybe he isn't, but the setting of SS almost demands it. I dont see necessarily a political stance in SS by Wolfe in this matter. I may be wrong, but I think the evidence is not that clear. For me it's irrelevant what his position is anyway, except as a curiosity.
>> "a hundred years ago
>> anyone with sufficient funds could purchase a firearm in most European
>> countries with a minimum of fuss"
>> There were some "unspoken" rules, I beleive. For the most part only the
>> wealthy, the "gentleman", would have firearms without drawing attention
>> from autorities. A "nobody" with a weapon would only get it randomly
>> confiscated by autorities no matter if he actually bought it or not. It
>> wasn't exactely the same situation as in the US, were pretty much everyone
>> could use one. I may be wrong though, so maybe someone here can elaborate
>> on this topic.
> It depends on the country, in some places it was as you describe. In most
> places it was not.
In what "most places" it was not?
The thing is that decent weapons were sort of pricey,
> and most poor people were poor. When the working classes started to be
> able to afford decent weapons is when there started to be, for some
> reason, a movement for gun control.
And what reason for gun control was that? You should know, you learned it in school, while I didn't.
>> Anyway, the "Wild West" is too imbeded, it seems to me, on the minds of
>> the Americans. That's normal. Plus, there's the constitution. The conquest
>> of the vast and wild frontier, frontier life, and the inerent dangers of
>> such a setting, all this was pretty different from the european experience
>> in the 19th century. I think this is something, together with your
>> constitution, that is still pretty much alive in your minds. It generates
>> passions regarding the whole "guns or no guns" issues that are completely
>> alien to europeans.
>> If I'm wrong please correct me.
> I believe you are mistaken, though I think honestly mistaken.
At least one US member of this list agreed that I could have a point here. You, another US citizen, disagree. It seems to me that beying mistaken in this case is a matter of personal opinion, so maybe there's validity to what I said after all.
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