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People around the world are wondering out loud why America has a gun problem when Canada and Europe don't.
Canadians and Europeans watch the same violent movies, and many Canadians and Swiss have even easier access to guns than most Americans. But only America seems to have so many men buying guns, hoarding guns, and discharging guns. So, what would Freud say about all of this?
The famous psychiatrist may well have found interesting a line of research performed and published repeatedly over the past decade that shows that chemicals like Bisphenol-A are widespread in the American food supply, but generally not as widespread or even banned in Canada and Europe. As "Nature" magazine noted in an article titled "US Opts Not to Ban BPA in Canned Foods", BPA "mimics the hormone estrogen" even in "low doses."
Estrogen, of course, is the hormone that makes girls into girls and women into women. And what happens to men when they take estrogen? Their penises get smaller.
As Yahoo News reported, a study in Canada found that estrogen-mimicking chemicals definitely can affect penis size. The article, headlined "Bisphenol-A May Cause Smaller Penises," notes, "This new research regarding Bisphenol A influencing smaller genitals and penises in male humans may be a sizeable problem for men already worried about the size of their nether regions."
The article's author Penny Richards further notes that scientists in Canada studied penis sizes and BPA exposure levels of thousands of children, and found a clear relationship between BPA exposure and smaller penises.
She wrote, "This news relating to small penis size and BPA comes on the heels of past tests. The scientific community has long known that rodents dosed with chemicals such as BPA have given birth to feminized male babies. Effects include smaller genital tracts in the male mice. The new Canadian study also follows recent report by scientists in the United States who reported that they noticed smaller penises in boys from moms who had high levels of BPA."
BPA, while mostly banned in Canada and Europe, is widespread in the American food supply. Virtually everything you eat in most fast-food restaurants came in either a can lined with BPA or in a giant box lined with a plastic bag made with BPA. And Americans, particularly gun-loving Americans, seem to have a strong affection for fast food.
And BPA is only one of dozens of estrogen-mimicking chemicals in the American food supply. Mix up a few of them through a lifetime and you may end up with really, really small penises!
So, back to Freud. What would Sigmund say about a nation filled with men whose penises are getting smaller and smaller because their food supply is laced with estrogen-mimicking chemicals? Might they start turning in large numbers to long things that look like big penises and can produce awe-inspiring ejaculations when their triggers are tickled?
Well, the idea of such a problem was never presented to the great psychiatrist, because such chemicals didn't exist back in his day. But from his widely-known "penis envy" theory, a modern psychotherapist could conclude that Freud would probably be on board with the idea that men who worry about the size or functionality of their penises might find ways to compensate. Like by buying, using, and displaying long, thin things that can have something come out of the end. Like cigars. And guns.
Freud, of course, famously said that sometimes a good cigar is just a good cigar (he was actually speaking of his pipe, but the meaning is the same). And, presumably, most rational gun owners are just rational gun owners, not men freaked out about shrinking penises.
But what about those guys who seem to obsess on these things?
Well, let's leave the final word on that to the internationally known commentator on sociological conditions, Jim Carrey. In a recent video for Funny or Die, he sings, near the end, that,
"As near as I can figure,You're a big, big man,With a little bitty gland,So you need something bigger,With a hair-thin trigger..."
Makes perfect sense to me...