Harvard Public Health Expert on Cigarettes and Guns

Screen Shot 2013-01-07 at 9.57.32 PMFinally, someone is talking about health related to gun rights, just not in the direction I hoped. David Hemenway is the Director of the Injury Control Research Center at Harvard University.  The audio link below is an NPR interview with him discussing his opinion on curbing gun violence. Here’s the catch, his argument is society needs to treat guns like cigarettes. There was a time when cigarettes were glamorous, and now they are considered disgusting. Everyone has been educated about the health risk and as a result, those who still smoke have become largely inconspicuous.

Alright, let’s talk about health, but I want to have the “Young-white-male-adult with-poor-mental-health” discussion. Maybe the United States culture can be altered to believe guns are undesirable, but criminal behavior is already undesirable. If we embarrass gun owners, would that calm the criminal mind? Would psychopaths suddenly grow a conscience? NO! I looked up info on Mr. Hemenway. He’s a white male, about the age of my dad, obviously highly intelligent, and touts an accomplished resume. He surmises we could make the inner city kids believe that “Using guns should be considered a sign of weakness, that you’re really a wuss. You can’t stand up for yourself without the use of this ‘equalizer'”  If it were possible for someone so separated in culture from another group to affect widespread change, we’d already have kids that pulled their pants up and rap music would only have wholesome lyrics.

using guns should be considered a sign of weakness, that you’re really a wuss. You can’t stand up for yourself without the use of this “equalizer”

hemenway08B.jpg_177_x_250_pxHis ideas are just another argument that comes from a place of idealistic utopia. Violence and guns are glamorized in the movies, TV shows, and video games, I believe his ideas could reduce some of that content. Which might help.  Still, he goes on to discuss banning actual gun characteristics, such as high capacity magazines.

Harvard Researchers: Tackle Gun Violence Like Smoking, Car Deaths | WBUR.

I know some of you will be screaming in the comments below that “Smoking is not in the Bill of Rights.”  Which brings me to my final point.  Deglamorizing smoking was actually for the overall good, there is zero up side to smoking.  It slowly kills the person who is actively smoking.  It slowly kills their family as well, while they are subjected to secondhand smoke constantly over years.  I have never smoked, but honestly – I don’t care if anyone smokes, as long as I don’t have to breathe their second-hand smoke.  Given the prevalence of tobacco plantations in the Colonies at the birth of our nation, the pipe and tobacco industry must have been critical to the new economy.  Yet, there is no amendment that guarantees the right to smoke a cigarette.

Our founding fathers did believe that our guns were important enough to guarantee, so critical it was listed 2nd, after the Freedom of Speech.  There are tragedies related to guns, but guns also have an extreme upside. They provide food for some families, sport and game for others, an equalizer for a woman against violence, and protection for the entire family against the dregs of society.

Our firearms ensure the Freedom of Speech, and all the other protections guaranteed to every single United States citizen, by the Constitution, remain for our children and their children.  ~Lil Chantilly

All that, and still the most important benefit is our firearms continue to ensure the Freedom of Speech, and all the other protections guaranteed to every single United States citizen, by the Constitution, remain for our children and their children.  That is one hell of an upside! 

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2 thoughts on “Harvard Public Health Expert on Cigarettes and Guns

  1. Another thoughtful post on the subject du jour. Keep up the good work!

    Given that the average American is at least 300 times more likely to be killed by their healthcare providers than they are by a bullet from a gun, I would think that public health “experts” would have their hands full cleaning up their own catastrophic mess before taking on the comparatively small problem of gun violence.

  2. Talk about your basic disconnect from reality… He either needs to come down out of that ivory tower, or stop smoking what ever he’s on… Thanks for the link, too bad it’s such moonbat drivel…

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