Guns hold or contain the fundamental pair-of-opposites that is life. Let’s explore what Security and Freedom mean. They are both imperatives that must be obeyed, but they are contradictory and both cannot be obeyed at the same time.
Just look at our advertising. You buy insurance to prevent surprises, to make you feel secure against loss of control. Control is security.
While freedom is going beyond control. That’s risky. Freedom means exploring, adventure, and risk. Without risk, there is no adventure, no going beyond what you know and control.
America was created on freedom and risk. Staying with England was secure, was the known. Being outside of the womb of the past is freedom and risky. You don’t know what’s going to happen, but you are secure in your ability to handle what’s going to happen.
aThis freedom that is security requires a basic trust in your own nature, your own instincts, like Indiana Jones. He steps into the adventure—he must quest—in basic trust that he get what he needs in the dangerous moment to survive. He willingly wings it.
When you “wing it” you embrace risk because there is no insurance. All of our action heroes in the movies are free to risk everything because of a basic trust, the MacGyver trust that you can create your way out. There will be something you can use to create your way out of the fix.
So this trust is in life as being creative. That I am life and I can create my way out of any fix by using what is given in a new or creative way. I can put together what’s given to make a new tool, a new weapon, etc.
The mind that does not trust in the basic freedom of life as a creative force can only buy more insurance and take refuge in the known through control.
But I digress…Basically, security is control of the known. The unknown is the enemy of security and control. Control means making the unknown secure by naming it and controlling it.
But freedom. Freedom is freedom from the known. Freedom breaks out of the prison of the known where life is controlled. Hell, Trump was elected because he personified this freedom from correctness, from the known. Trump is an unknown who cannot be controlled, and those who long for freedom like that.
The Law gives us security, a sense of control. That’s why we want everyone to obey the law. The Lawless is unknown and scary. Yet we love our lawbreakers, our gangsters who live outside the law.
The dance goes on between security and freedom. The fence gives us security, but we cannot wait to climb it into the freedom of the unknown where there is no security but our own potential, our own capacities.
I think this is why we love our guns. The gun is a symbol of freedom. When you have a gun you hold death in your hand, the awesome power of God. The gun, therefore, is both security and freedom, a metaphor, if you will, that like a battery holds both positive and negative poles in one container. By holding these opposite forces, security and freedom, as One, energy is created. You can feel it when you hold a gun. A battery can turn on your light. A gun can turn you on.
Trump is Dirty Harry, an action hero of the 70s. Remember Dirty Harry? He’s a paradox and for me a metaphor that helps me understand guns and, just now as I write, Trump. The 70s were as riot of insecurity because all the social norms that were broken in the late 60s came rushing in. like a tsunami. Insecurity was in the saddle. We needed Law and Order. But do you remember the theme in the 70s? Law and order was broken. You had to read the punks their rights. You had to treat the criminals with respect. Law and Order was crippled by law and order. We need a Dirty Harry who restores security by breaking the law, by bypassing the law, a hero who trusted his own gut instincts instead of the laws which were now working in favor of those dissidents, those rebels against the law, those who didn’t obey Nison and protested the war.
Dirty Harry is also a metaphor for the gun, the Big Gun that restores order because his gun is bigger than the crooks guns. Like the Western gunslingers who comes to town and kills the bad gunslingers, Dirty Harry restores order through disorder. This was a favorite role for Clint Eastwood, the good bad guy.
There is a spiritual truth to this action hero metaphor. Jesus was outside the law. Buddha was outside the law. The Law is the known. The Law is conventional thinking, accepted theory. The lawbreaker takes risks. The lawbreaker is the inventor. So America has always worshipped the lawbreaker, the one who goes beyond convention, beyond civilization. The explorer goes beyond the law and the known.
Freedom is that land beyond the fence, beyond regulations and government, and the mother who makes us put down our war games and come home to practice the piano, to be civilized.
Freedom is Huck Finn…and Dirty Harry. I’ll let you connect the dots to Trump now, why for his fans he is their Dirty Harry.