There’s a documented phenomenon where pilots under stress will become fixated on one instrument or control and fail to take action that might have saved his plane from disaster. Silly to think it only happens to pilots.
Seventeen high school kids murdered last week is a tragedy. Twenty-eight people were shot on New Year’s day 2017 in Chicago. Did you forget? Drive-bys and stray bullets kill a lot of kids and young people almost every day in certain neighborhoods.
Few of us outside of Chicago are moved to tears, thoughts or prayers. We seem to defend failed efforts instead and find people to blame. Still too many guns? we can think up all sorts of excuses why and no factual support is required.
On the whole, the gun violence problem is hard to understand. Illinois has long been a strict gun-control state with gun owner registration and background checking and a required photo ID. Handguns were banned entirely for a long time and no carry permits were issued unless you were a friend of the police chief.
Sure we get as many excuses for the disparity between efforts and results as Donald Trump has for packing his cabinet with Russian agents, but the proof of gun control is how well it controls guns.
People will point out one single correlation between laws and results and sell it as causation, and defensive arguments abound, but it remains that we’re not doing a good job with our gun laws. Other factors seem to predominate when we talk about murder. Can we talk? Probably not. Ego defenses get in the way.
The narcissism of small differences. It was, I think, coined in German of course, by Freud to describe the exaggerated response to small details between people who may be alike but for small details.
Before I get in over my head, all I’m suggesting is that people who share a very similar goal are making it harder to work toward that goal because of the animosity and belligerence resulting from minor differences in terminology or accepted facts or dogma. Divide and conquer. It’s a self-inflicted wound. Can we talk?