Imagine was a hit solo by John Lennon of the Beatles. Indulge me for this revision of the lyrics.
Imagine no more firearms
It's easy if you try
No guns to kill us
No reason a child must die
Imagine all the people
Living for today
Let's do another exercise in my "take it to the limits" approach to understanding our systems, our institutions, and our politics. Start by taking the lyrics literally: Imagine no more firearms. No tolerance. Period. Zero. None. No more AR-15s. No more Glocks with 30-round magazines, no more Saturday night specials. Imagine that one day, all guns in America just disappeared. (OK - we'll let the military keep their guns.) How would your life change?
Without firearms, law enforcement would change. If criminals did not have guns, why would police need them?
Presidents of the US would not have to deliver memorial speeches (as President Obama did today in Dallas).
The NRA would disappear, their reason for being gone. Their money gone, their political influence would evaporate.
Your life would go on. You'd go to work. You'd go shopping. You'd go to movie theaters. All without fear.
You would not fear for your children's lives - at school or at play.
Our politicians would quit quibbling over background checks, quit quarreling about magazine sizes. Congress might use the resulting freed time to get something meaningful done.
Arguments over modern interpretations of the second amendment would be silenced. Gun rights advocates would petition for single-shot muskets.
And if guns had disappeared on December 7th, 1980, John Lennon might be alive today.
Please join me, and I think John Lennon, and Imagine.
You may say I'm a dreamer
But I'm not the only one
I hope someday you'll join us
And the world will be as one
You do not have to explore the opposite limit, more guns than people. We are already there.