Normally I tend to shy away from politics here on Tangents. Part of this lies with the fact that the site is primarily for webcomic reviews and webcomic commentary (with a smattering of fiction and other review types tossed in). But when Tycho and Gabe decided to speak on the recent attacks by the National Rifle Association on the video game industry over at Penny Arcade, I was so moved by the simple yet elegant argument that I needed to comment on this. You see, I’m one of the quiet majority that exists in the boundary between the NRA’s pro-gun policies, and the gun control activists – I believe in the rights of people to bear arms, and yet do not see a problem with reasonable legislation.
What happened in Connecticut is horrific and tragic. If this incident happened in any other democratic nation (such as Australia), then you would see a reasonable discussion on this, followed by fair and balanced legislation (again, such as in Australia). Instead, we have the NRA blaming the media, the movie industry, video games, comic books, and more rather than the fact that ineffectual gun control and firearm education legislation exists in this country. Thus Tycho and Gabe’s return argument: it is a very odd sort of Patriot that would destroy the First Amendment to protect the Second.
Ultimately, Tycho and Gabe’s little strip (done on lined paper instead of either Bristol board or on a drawing tablet) doesn’t call for guns to be banned or the like. Instead, it is a quiet call out against those who would trash our First Amendment rights. Seeing that links to Tangents Reviews is banned on Facebook as an “abusive website” (yeah. Go figure), I understand how insidious efforts can be to kill our First Amendment rights. Given that the Second Amendment exists to help protect our First Amendment rights, it is wrong to blame all forms of media in an effort to shunt the responsibility to a different front. My hat’s off to Tycho and Gabe. Well spoken, my friends.