Monday, March 26, 2018

Gun manufacturers have their own "CDA230": should it be taken away from them?]

Here are a couple pieces:  “The fight over gun control really isn’t about guns”, from Time, Oct. 2017.  I would say, it is about protecting oneself from sharing vulnerability with others.  To a somewhat less obvious extent, that is true about many free speech arguments. 
A lot of this comes down to how far we will go in expecting individuals to bear the full responsibilities of their actions.  But it is an existential tautology: Victims and their families and loved ones also bear these responsibilities, whereas most of the rest of us do not.  So we always have to re-evaluate everyone’s karma in an issue like this.  And unfortunately, too many people on the Left especially want this to be about what group(s) you belong to.  But shared responsibility certainly goes to speech distribution  issues on sex trafficking, terror recruiting, and weapons instructions.
The analogy between weapons ownership and speech carries into policy arguments about downstream liability.  The gun industry has its own “CDA230” (Section 230) through the Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act of 2005.  
As an NPR article in 2015 shows, the analogy is not perfect .   But the gun industry will surely come under pressure over this issue. 

Will “the kids” attack collectively irresponsible speech distribution as much as they have gun sales?  Campus speech codes do not bode well for this comparison. 

I presume it won’t be very long before David Hogg can vote.  In 3 years he can drink (we hope he doesn't much) and, by his own laws, own a lawful weapon himself.  And in 8 more years he can serve in Congress. In 18 years he can be president. (Mark Zuckerberg has 2 more years, but blew it with the Facebook scandals.)   I think in a lot of places you can run for local office at 18.  He should go for it in Broward County.  (It might be hard to make Hollywood movies and do public service both, but Ronald Reagan and Arnold Schwarzenegger have pulled that off.)  On Facebook, some friends use “Poopiepants” for the White House’s current occupant (at 71) and mention potty training, like what substitute teachers have to deal with by surprise. .  As David Brooks said, right now the world is led by a child.

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