Remember when conservatives used to use the word 'permissive' a lot to describe liberal mores? I think you have to be 'of a certain age,' as they say, to remember that time, but what the hell: I'm just shy of 60, and that certainly qualifies. (Being imminently 60 doesn't bother me in the least; what gets me is that various events of importance in my life happened one hell of a long time ago. But I digress.)
A lot of characteristics of left and right have flipped between the 1960s and now, of course. Now there's a lot more hard-headed realism on the left, and a lot more ivory-tower pseudointellectual bullshit on the right, for instance. And permissiveness is one of these.
Of course, the 'permissiveness' of the 1960s and 1970s was mostly about sex, which didn't really hurt anyone, but upset a lot of people anyway. Conservative permissiveness is a whole 'nother story.
And today's gun culture is Exhibit A. The belief that people can and should carry their guns with them everywhere, that the 'castle doctrine' doesn't just apply to your house but to every inch of your property as well, that you should be able to stand your ground with firepower against any threat, even if you've brought that threat into being by getting into people's faces when any reasonably sensible person would have just walked on by (and all of these things backed by relatively recent changes in the law in many states), seems to be leading to a rash of shootings that appear to have a common thread of: I have the right to shoot this person dead, so I will - often when I'm in no danger at all.
Permissiveness. With lethal consequences.
There are cases like this one, where an Orlando homeowner shoots a guy who had been in his yard but fled, but the intrepid homeowner chased him over a fence and shot him to death on the grounds of a nearby apartment complex.
Or like this one, where the white West Virginia homeowner saw a couple of black men try to get into what he thought - wrongly - was a shed on the corner of his lot, but actually was part of the property next door. So he got out his gun, and shot and killed them both without warning. One of the men killed had just moved in next door, and the other was his brother.
Or like the just-decided Michael Dunn case, where Dunn shot up a car full of black kids, killing one, continuing to shoot at them after they were trying to get the hell out of Dodge. He seemed to think he had the right to pump them full of holes, as long as there was something he could hang a Stand Your Ground on.
Increasingly, gun lovers feel that they have the right, thanks to the expanded reach of pro-gun laws, to shoot to kill in certain situations. Not because they're in any danger, but just because.
On a message board I've been hanging out at since the end of the last millenium, a poster mentioned an incident that happened to her sister and brother-in-law. Some acquaintances of their teenage son heard that he had some nice gamer stuff, so they broke in while nobody was there, but were scared when some burglar alarms went off, got away with almost nothing, and were quickly apprehended. Weeks later, the couple said at a family get-together that they wished they'd been there, so they could have shot the kids dead.
These worthless assholes were disappointed that they blew their chance to legally kill someone.
And that's what it seems to be about: the hope that people like this have that the opportunity will come their way to blow someone away legally. They've changed the gun laws so that such opportunities are more abundant, and it's given these people the impression that the gun laws are even more permissive than they are in this respect.
It's a cultural thing. A culture of permissiveness. Permissiveness about blowing people away, ending their lives.