Gun Control: A Passivity Disorder?

By Doctors for Responsible Gun Ownership:

June 8, 2017

In contemporary America, as in the West generally, we are witnessing a diminution of traditional self-reliant values. With this, there has been a strong shift to a passive, group think perspective. It’s our belief that the demand for extreme gun control goes beyond normal passivity and enters the realm of a psychological disorder.

Let’s clarify the term “Passivity Disorder”. We all recognize that passive people are less likely to argue about or object to changing circumstances. They are also prone to taking direction. The pathologically passive are even susceptible to taking direction to act against their own well-being. It becomes a general, non-sexual masochism.

This is similar to Dependent Personality Disorder, as it is formally defined by the American Psychiatric Association in its Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Fifth Edition.  (In fact, this used to be termed Passive-Dependent Personality Disorder.) People with this pattern:

  • avoid making decisions on their own, relying on advice and assurance from others about what to do;
  • will do unpleasant things to gain support and nurturance from others, and have great difficulty disagreeing with others for fear of losing that;
  • are unlikely to initiate any plan or project because that would mean taking some responsibility for outcomes; and,
  • feel uncomfortable and helpless alone, and fears that to the extent of urgently needing to replace relationships that have failed regardless of the risks of mistakes.

For example, most normal people can enjoy using firearms while learning to defend themselves and their families. However, overly passive individuals, both men and women, may feel unable to consider such an activity. After all, learning to use a firearm for self-defense is an assertive act. The responsible gun owner is in fact declaring: “I will only tolerate aggression up to a certain point. After that, I’m fighting back.”

The increasing reliance on social media to track like-thinking allies, which strengthens identification, suggests this sort of group emotional dependency increasing over the past two decades or so. At present, there seems to be a greater willingness  on the part of leftist partisans, to do things that used to be unpleasant in support of their side, like attacking others who dare to disagree publicly. And in all ranges of political and social belief, group action seems to be more and more the standard. For our purposes, we’re focused on the passive piece of this, the reluctance to step forth and act autonomously, independently and responsibly.

Until recently, the idea of standing up for oneself was an unquestioned American principle. Boys especially were presumed to get into fights from time to time and were often even given boxing lessons by their parents. That’s also why, until about forty years ago, kids freely played with cap pistols, used bean shooters, and made sling shots. This was considered healthy play for boys who might have to bear real weapons someday.

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