If like me, you have black and white opinions on gun ownership, this podcast is a good exercise in challenging those thoughts.
Whilst taking Juno for his morning constitutional today, I listened to a podcast by Sam Harris on gun violence in the US.
Now, I am not a huge fan of Mr Harris. When he interviews someone (particularly someone I find interesting) the finished product is:
- 60% Sam super-articulately expressing his own opinions
- 10% Sam talking about himself and
- 30% his guest actually getting a word in edge-wise.
This podcast does not deviate from those stats.
Also, coming from a place of cultural privilege, living in a country with strong gun control laws, and low gun violence, I have some pretty black and white views about the whole mess in the US.
- Firearms should be exceedingly difficult to obtain.
- Gun ownership should entail strict training and regular re-training and assessment.
- There is no place for high powered assault rifles in the general community. Period.
- No one should be able to carry (concealed or otherwise) firearms in public spaces. Period.
The recent catastrophic loss of life in Uvalde, Texas only consolidated those views.
So after a few minutes of listening to this podcast and getting an inkling of the views of both Mr Harris (a gun owner) and his guest (a national correspondent for The Atlantic), I could feel my own reactions bubbling. I was about to pull the plug.
I’m glad I persisted.
As the interview unfolds it presented some ideas and evidence that really did challenge my own opinions. It made me think about the arguments of gun owners and the context of the problem within the gun culture and highly volatile social systems of the US right now.
It turned out to be a really good exercise in The Third Story.
Finding the space between your story and the other story, where a third (new) story may exist.
I recommend listening.