The cultures of the USA and Europe have moved apart over the last 2 or 3 decades. Europe is more or less dominated by far-left political views, almost communist, if you listen to many Americans.
While in Europe, most people find the American belief in the unalienable right of its citizens to bear guns increasingly difficult to understand, given the public massacres that have occurred there in recent years. (Not that Europe is immune from massacres, even though it has more restrictive gun laws)
The Economist has an interesting short article on the origins of “rights” and on the US attitude to gun laws:
PEOPLE’S ideas often don’t make any sense when you try to hold them together in your head simultaneously, as Richard Rorty, Daniel Kahneman or Desiderius Erasmus will be happy to tell you.
One of the areas in which people tend to have ideas that don’t make sense, when you hold them together in your head simultaneously, is that of rights. For example, many Americans believe that our rights derive from God or from the very nature of being human. As Paul Ryan put it in a discussion of Obamacare this month, folks of his political persuasion don’t believe that the people have the power to make up new rights; rights come from God and nature.
These same Americans also generally believe that our rights are those delineated in the Declaration of Independence and the constitution, including a non-infringeable individual right to bear arms. And yet, clearly, people in most law-governed democracies other than the United States, countries like Britain, Canada, France, Israel, the Netherlands and Japan, do not have an individual right to bear arms.
How, then, can the right to bear arms as enshrined in the constitution derive from God, or from the very nature of being human? …