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I want; I want; I want. What about what other people want? What about the views of people who view your wants as undesirable or unwise? How about people who think the government is already too big and that there might be better alternatives to things like free college and that nobody yet has come up with a practical way to fund universal healthcare.

You said the police having guns didnt make a difference in the times you needed them. So what? Is there any reason whatsoever that means your experience is a valid reason to disarm them? No, there isn’t. You are a specific experience and that’s all.

What about people who are grateful for police with guns? There are even people who think police should have more of them. A higher percentage of police officers in Europe patrol with submachine guns than in the U.S.

You are every bit as wedded to your views as any right-wing conservative and there is a fair amount of evidence to support their views just as there is evidence to support yours.

You describe yourself as a tree-hugger. Did you know that hunters and fishermen do far more to support conservation efforts than groups like the Sierra Club? Every time a hunter buys a new gun, ammunition, a new bow, or arrows, there is a federal excise tax to be paid. That money goes to conservation and wildlife management. In most states, the revenues from state hunting and fishing licenses goes to that state’s conservation and wildlife management agencies. This means that I have contributed more to actual conservation than you have.

I never expected that you would consider buying a gun and I honestly don’t care whether you want one or not; that’s your decision. I just wanted to point out the choices that millions of people made when confronted with the reality that police with guns might have difficulty responding to calls for assistance. First because of COVID-19 — March 2020 had the highest number of guns sold of any month on record — then because of the rioting. Out of the months since March, only May was not in the top ten months for gun sales.

Their views and decisions are every bit as valid as yours.

You mentioned that San Francisco had not experienced an increase in crime after inmates were released. Yet the Governor of New York and the mayor of New York City both blame an increase in crime in the Big Apple on the release of inmates from Rikers Island.

The world is neither as bad as we fear nor as good as we hope but the law of unintended consequences demands we consider change carefully because there are always costs with every benefit. You have not done this, but that’s not a particular criticism of you; lots of people have failed to consider the consequences of their demands.

Yes, there are things I would change. I would end no-knock searches, like the one that cost the life of Breonna Taylor. I would end civil asset forfeiture, which has been abused, and place very strong limitations on the use of the RICO Act. As far as I can tell, drugs have been the cause of more problems because of the laws against them than the actual harm done using them. Addiction and dependence are medical problems, not problems the law can address.

If society wants a less adversarial relationship between police and citizens, it has to consider more than just changing the attitudes of police. It needs to change the attitudes of citizens toward police. I am not talking just about people of color; I am talking about the attitude of the general population that police officers are just a necessary evil instead of an integral part of a functional society.

Your positions are actually part of the problem, not a solution.

Professional writer. Passionately interested in facts. Founder of onewordtexas.org

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