The Way of the Gun: A Bloody Journey into the World of Firearms
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In some places of the world, getting a gun is easier than getting a glass of water. In some parts of the world, an individual is allowed to carry concealed firearms into schools. In some parts of the world, there are more guns than people to shoot them. There are almost 1 billion guns across the globe today, a shocking number that is higher than ever before in history.
Gun Baby Gun
Each year, 12 billion bullets are produced -- almost two bullets for every person on the planet. And over , people are shot dead over an average year worldwide. I did find the whole thing to be a bit depressing, as there appears to be no hope for anyone unless you live in Greenland… or was it Iceland? Susan : The gun shot survival rates and also the measures being put in place to prevent people from using their gun as an emotional response.
Facts also like the drop in access to guns was not followed by a rise in other forms of suicide, for example in the Suicide chapter. What did disturb me was the chapters on the gun manufacturers and pro-gun lobbyists! Paul : The statement kept appearing throughout: more guns means more murder, more suicide, more violence. Janine : I found it intriguing that Americans are so paranoid and are more likely to kill themselves in the first 12 months of having a gun, or be involved in a gun related homicide once they have a gun.
Paul : My favourite?! Paul : …and trying to protect students in US schools by developing bullet-proof blankets. Janine : Definitely better odds these days on the battlefield though, and the history aspects of the book were interesting in terms of how many soldiers used to die from a lack of understanding about how to treat a gun wound. The section on child soldiers was very disturbing, especially the girl forced to make stew out of someone then taste test it before her fellow child rebels would partake.
Paul : While it was interesting to read about the battlefield mortality rates and war zones, the areas that had by far the most impact on me were the domestic ones. Guns in situations and environments that they should not be in.
How Not To Write About Gun Culture - In These Times
Belinda : I found the chapter about child soldiers completely chilling, just awful! The chapter on the sex convention in Vegas was also, obviously, a bit sleazy. Belinda : I agree Paul, and another reason it felt for me like the theme of guns really was just a way for the author to tell his story. Janine : I found it interesting that that the author demonstrated a reasonable amount of detachment until it came to the question of hunting, and his compulsion to hunt something for the sake of the book.
It all seems so completely unregulated and almost given permission to be dodgy. Paul : I agree with that.
The chapter where he talked about when he had been held up at gun point three times was a good read but was a bit out of character with some of the more statistical factual areas of the book. It also seemed like the author had, only through this book, decided to really detest guns.
See a Problem?
Belinda : I think the author was a reliable person to investigate the obsession with guns. He was relatively objective but him using this book to also tell the story of his career meant some of his commentary came with a fair dose of ego, in my opinion. Paul : He was extremely thorough and not American which gave him some objectivity and credibility. And he did acknowledge when writing about the NRA that he was doing the same as them and spinning the message he wanted to present.
Janine : I agree with Susan that he may have cobbled a few stories together from other expeditions and then tacked on a few more to flesh it out. I felt like I was at the gun show at least three times! Paul, I think he was quite measured about the NRA, all things considered.
Belinda : Did you find the author likeable? I was very curious about Overton as a person after reading this book and have spent a fair bit of time Googling him since finishing.
Guns in America
Wonder why? Susan : I think he had some great stories…but came across as a bit awkward though? Sometimes his interviews made it seem like he was struggling. Janine : I found him quite clinical Belinda, until he got to the bit about hunting and vegetarianism and people who oppose hunting but eat meat being a bit stupid.
He said that the Australian Government banning automatic and semi-automatic weapons had seen an increase in violent attacks on women in because they had no ability to defend themselves anymore.