While unbounded freedom of personal expression might lead to Utopia, it can also lead to anarchy, a lesson liberals have yet to learn.
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Guns and gun ownership have been an integral element of our society since the Pilgrims landed. The NRA has been active since 1871. “Traditional” firearm related deaths (robberies, suicides, murder) have been in steady decline since 1990.
The recent spate in senseless mass murder/suicides obviously represents an anomaly not readily identifiable or definable on a historic basis. Through the 1970s and 80s such events were unusual. The uptick began in the 90s. In the eight years of the Clinton administration about 16 mass shootings (more than 4 killed) were recorded. Ten episodes were recorded during the 8 Bush years, nine of them in the last 4 years. In Obama’s five years, they have escalated to ~20. This might to some extent reflect an increased reporting sensitivity, but the trend seems inescapable.