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Analysis posted Jan 21 2013, 3:06 PM Category: Commentary Source: InformationLiberation Print

John Taylor Gatto on the Inanity of Gun Control

Chris | InformationLiberation

The following is an excerpt from John Taylor Gatto's book "The Underground History of American Education," it was submitted by a reader in relation to the gun control debate.
What if I proposed that we hand three sticks of dynamite and a detonator to anyone who asked for them. All an applicant would need is money to pay for the explosives. You'd have to be an idiot to agree with my plan -- at least based on the assumptions you picked up in school about human nature and human competence.

And yet gasoline, a spectacularly mischievous explosive, dangerously unstable and with the intriguing characteristic as an assault weapon that it can flow under locked doors and saturate bulletproof clothing, is available to anyone with a container. Five gallons of gasoline has the destructive power of a stick of dynamite. The average tank holds fifteen gallons, yet no background check is necessary for dispenser or dispensee. As long as gasoline is available gun control is beside the point. Push on. Why do we allow access to a portable substance capable of incinerating houses, torching crowded theaters, or even turning skyscrapers into infernos? We haven't even considered the battering ram aspect of cars -- why are novice operators allowed to command a ton of metal capable of hurtling through school crossings at up to two miles a minute? Why do we give to the power of life and death like this to everyone?

It should strike you at once that our unstated official assumptions about human nature are dead wrong. Nearly all people are competent and responsible; universal motoring proves that. The efficiency of motor vehicles as terrorist instruments would have written a tragic record long ago if people were inclined to terrorism. But almost all auto mishaps are accidents.
The old idea of American justice was people were to be considered innocent until proven guilty, not guilty until proven innocent. In the new America, the government takes the rights from everyone due to the malfeasance of a few, and rather than live by the code "better a thousand guilty men go free than one innocent man be imprisoned," the new code is "better a thousand innocent men be imprisoned than one guilty man go free." That's why we have the world's largest prison population which rivals Stalin's gulags. Meanwhile, the crimes of the state go unchecked.

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