Critical Mass

When you’re a civil liberty supporter, it’s easy to get discouraged.  And with most libertarian issues, sometimes it seems as if the train has left the station for good.

But to borrow a cliche, it’s easy to miss the forest for the trees, especially when the Big Media and Big Left (ptr) are bombarding you with weed elms.

Gun rights are winning – not just the legislative, judicial and demographic battles, but the biggest battle of all, the social battle.

Even with polls like this, claiming 90% of the people support gun control?


Even with states like California and New Jersey doubling and tripling down on gun control?

Not only is it “even with” them; their radical gun control is a symptom of and reaction to the near complete victory in the courts, legislatures, Congress, the marketplace of ideas, and society as a whole.

Even outside the traditional “white male conservative” groups?

Especially outside those groups.

The conclusion of the piece, by Kareem Shaya:

On one hand you have an idea that has been growing for almost 30 years across almost all demographic groups; is more popular with young people than ever; spread permissive carry laws from just nine states in 1986 to 42 states and DC today; grew the installed base of its dearest shibboleth by a factor of 30 since the 1990s; and by its nature grows exponentially after reaching critical mass, because it spreads via the same natural laws that drive social networks, compound interest, and nuclear fission (see Kevin Simler’s incredible “Going Critical” for more on how that works).

Definitely check out “Going Critical”.

On the other hand you have an idea that went from grand national ambitions to eking out compromises in a small minority of states, and which gets less popular the more people learn about it. (That’s also compound interest, but with a negative sign in front of it.)

That’s one thing that is missing from the “debate” most people see, the one in the media – the sense of history.

Shaya’s piece points out that 35 years ago, complete bans on handguns and national registration of hunting rifles was the mainstream, pushed by groups like “The National Coalition to Ban Handguns” and “Handgun Control Incorporated”.

Today – barring polls taken after emotionally wrenching events like mass shootings – gun rights tends to outpoll gun control, and the grabber groups have had to continuously scale back not only their ambition, but their marketing:  “Handgun Control Inc.” became “The Brady Organization”, among others.

Read the whole thing.  Pass it along.

6 thoughts on “Critical Mass

  1. Keep up the good fight against the disinformation campaigns, Mitch. I’ve been following your tennis match with Mindeman on Twitter. You lob facts, he seems to return each serve with a logical fallacy.

  2. After a series of recent incidents – car-jackings in residential St. Paul and Woodbury, hammer and bar assaults at the University LRT station – we had news of a St. Paul permit holder chased by “youths” near Jackson and Mt. Airy street early last Friday morning. The permit holder called 911 after firing two shots at the four people that chased him, and he waited for the police to arrive. While the police were with him there was a call from Regions Hospital where a young man with a bullet wound near his chin had been brought in by three friends, who didn’t want to talk about it. The story is still up on the Pioneer-Press website; search “Gun permit holder reports being chased by group, shoots and wounds 15-year-old in St. Paul”.

  3. The first part of the post reminds me of a classic meme on facebook

    (Libertarian) “I dont understand why there arent more Libertarians” *shoots someone who slightly disagrees with Libertarian orthodoxy.

    Its why at my core, even though I wish we didnt have to have it, government is a necessary evil. And gun ownership is a big part of that, taking care of yourself, or God forbid, protecting yourself from an unruly government, see: Venezuela.

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