Civil Liberties and the Politics of Hate

By Kate MeierSupreme Court

In light of the recent gun control legislation that failed to pass in the senate, Christopher Strain’s presentation on “Evil Black Guns: Hate, Instrumentality, and the Neutrality of Firearms” was quite timely.  The presentation postulated the theory that guns are inherently evil because they are created for the primary purpose of causing death.  This is in contrast to the long-used statement often quipped by gun rights supporters “guns don’t kill people, people kill people”.   Instead, this presentation twisted the gun rights debate into a discussion on the purpose of guns.  That is that if a gun is created to kill it can hardly be surprising that it achieves its goal.  Removing the human actor from the issue of gun rights was in a word, inflammatory.  I can hear the outraged cries of gun rights supporters arguing that guns are used for all sorts of purposes; hunting, target practice, and protection among others.  And yet, after Professor Strain stopped speaking the unequivocal truth that could not be ignored was that the ultimate end goal of a gun, when fired, is to destroy life.

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