Aunt B., in a post entitled Slowly, Slowly, These Gun Nuts Work Their Way With Me, says it’s not the nanny state we have to worry about but the busy-body state:
Holy shit. This isn’t just a “nanny state;” this is a “busy-body state.”
So, I’ve been thinking all morning about what it might mean to think about the busy-body state. I hate to use the word “reframing,” but I think it fits. What if I reframe the way I think about judging appropriate government intervention as the difference between encouraging a busy-body state and not?
Which brings us back to the gun nuts, in the first place. I’m interested in hearing their take on this, because I think this has been their big complaint and I just didn’t get it. See, I’ve been thinking about the whole gun issue as a broad, panicked public safety issue–guns are dangerous, therefore we must get guns off the streets–and haven’t been too concerned with the implications of that.
Uncle concurs, generally. However, I don’t see how the abortion thing is only busy-body type stuff. As I’ve said many times: abortion is a heinous, disgusting and deplorable practice but it can only be made worse by criminalizing it. I don’t buy that opposition to abortion is a matter of being a busy body because it ends a human life (and arguing about whether that life has really started or not is just details). Criminalizing it will not stop abortion. You just open up an unregulated black market where, instead of a sterilized and safe doctor’s office, women will go to some shack where there’s a guy named Snake holding a pointy stick. And that would endanger two lives. And one thing a ton of pro-choice folks do that annoys me is assert woman this or woman that when there’s also the issue of the man involved and what say he has in the whole thing. Takes two to tango but only one to make a life altering decision that will lead to a life time of regret? Feh, no thanks. Aunt B. buys into that line of thinking as well, when she says:
Here you have a moral issue that has been turned into a legislative issue by people who believe that women cannot control themselves and that sweeping legislation must be enacted to make all women’s lives difficult, even though women have many legitimate reasons for needing abortions and what those women do almost never adversely affects the anti-abortion people.
Now, I know a lot of anti-abortion people (who I also disagree with). Not a single one has ever said that women can’t control themselves nor have they ever expressed desire to control women. They just take issue with the whole ending a human life thing. So, I don’t buy the whole guns and abortion are equal in terms of the impact of busy bodies because, while my gun ownership affects no one else really, abortion does affect others.
But guns, tobacco, drug, and a whole host of other laws are entirely busy body in nature.