Tuesday, March 6, 2018
Lindsey Paris-Lopez March 2, 2018
Recent developments in the gun control debate make me cautiously hopeful that our nation may be on its way toward curbing and maybe even transforming our violence. But that means there is a special urgency in this moment that we must channel toward understanding, compassion, and repentance.
A New Hope
First, the hope: The amazing students at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School of Parkland, Florida, have made more progress on the issue of sensible gun restrictions in the past two and a half weeks than I have ever seen in my lifetime. Their indefatigable spirit has ignited the nation’s conscience and stirred our passion…………….
The Mimetic Elements of the Gun Debate
…..I would not characterize the gun control debate as a strict mimetic rivalry, because there is a spectrum of ideas concerning gun rights and restrictions, not just two opposing sides. However, the national conversation on gun control tends to polarize people on different sides of the spectrum, and there are mimetic elements to this conflict. Though parties on either side of the gun debate want different policies enacted, they share a desire to shape the narrative on guns and the role they play in the vulnerability and security of society. And parties on either side of the gun debate characterize the other side as ignorant, naïve, or even dangerous. The call to arm teachers has polarized those who believe that such a measure would be the ultimate protection against those who see it as an invitation to disaster, with both sides accusing the other of failing to do what is necessary to protect children…………
As long as fear and enmity fuel the gun debate, guns will win.
Changing the Narrative
It may seem naïve to bring compassion to a gun fight, but compassion, empathy and understanding are essential for disarming our fears and transforming our culture of violence………
There is a deeper truth, the truth that life is grounded in Love and humans are made in the image of Love. While this is not a universally acknowledged truth, those who believe it because of their faith in God, humanity, or both, have a responsibility to live according to that faith………..
Steps for Transforming Our Violence
1. Recognize the history of racism, xenophobia and fear behind both gun rights and gun control. ……
2. Understand the mimetic nature of guns themselves.
3. Curb our militarism.
4. Love our enemies.
These steps will take time. In the meantime, there may be quicker elements of gun control that can be implemented, and they can make a difference, but they will still be enforced by a violent government with a history of disarming the marginalized and therefore subject to skepticism, and they will most likely be offset by counter-movements by gun rights activists. The most meaningful changes will not occur until we change the nature of fear and enmity that drive our nation to war and to arms. It is time to disarm fear with love.
Read more https://www.ravenfoundation.org/guns-mimetic-theory-disarming-fear-love/