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(Yahoo)   The GOP is now calling for broader gun rights, including unlimited capacity for bullets within guns, because obviously when I look at the aftermath of this summer what I think is "we need guns with more bullets"   ( divider line
    More: Asinine, GOP, David Keene, mass shooting, semiautomatic firearms, Sounds Good, assault weapons, NRA, Gabrielle Giffords  
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1529 clicks; posted to Politics » on 30 Aug 2012 at 3:42 PM (5 years ago)   |   Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»

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2012-08-30 01:55:51 PM  
6 votes:
Part of the problem, is that when we talk about gun control, we are pretty much talking about a distraction.

Any tool can be used as a weapon, if you hold it right. Britain and Japan tightly control weapons, yet still have violent crimes, albeit Japan skews her figures a bit by classifying a lot of those crimes as "missing persons" reports because police tend to lose face when they can't solve a crime, and the Yakuza and other gangs like to simply dispose of bodies out of the way which is part of the reason that so many are invested in construction and export/import businesses.

The distraction portion of the show comes in, because what we are really talking about is violent crime. How to reduce it. How to keep people safe. And gun control is a great red herring to wave in front of folks, and get them hett up about. It keeps the discussion on the tools used in the commission of violent crime, and the tools to defend oneself, but not about the root causes of folks turning to crime in the first place.

That is a discussion that folks don't like. Because it's a harder conversation. It doesn't have concrete representation. It cuts into issues of education, of a social safety net, in the relative sanity/insanity of our criminal justice system and the War on Drugs, and those are far harder conversations to have.

When we talk gun control, what we are really alluding to is crime control. And the best way to reduce violent crime is through education, a better mental health care system, a better social safety net, and wider opportunity, as well as taking a hard look our own drug control policies.

Yes, there are folks who like to equate guns with freedom. There are folks who consider books as an equal vaccination against tyranny as well, and folks who want to see some books banned are making similar arguments against the dissemination of information as being "too dangerous."

A gun is a tool. How it's used, that's up for grabs. Responsible gun owners exist. Some folks just like to pop off rounds and hunt. Some folks take guns as a symbol, and that gets a bit more hinkey, because they feel that their guns are the ONLY thing protecting their property and freedom.

We want to cut down crime, especially violent crime, we have to address the social problems that cause folks to turn to crime in the first place. Some folks ARE just born bastiches, and will only get bigger. Others are trained by environment and circumstance to turn to violence, by dint of early training--not quite the same training that our troops get to break down the inhibition from seriously harming other humans, but the result of early social conditioning can break that down. And as a society, we are getting really good at breaking down that inhibition in a good number of populations. That is something we need to address.

Weapon availability does make things easier, but Great Britain has proven that strict gun laws don't keep violent crime from happening, or weapons out of folks' hands. Breaking down the reasons folks turn to crime has to be where we start, if we want to make real progress though. There are nations where near every adult has access to military grade arms that don't have our crime rates, and certainly not our violent crime rates, because they have a social safety net that reduces the stress, and a culture that doesn't romanticize the weapon as a symbol of freedom. That romanticization isn't a cause, but it lends our population to being armed perhaps more than we really need to be. Properly trained, and responsible people can carry every day of their lives, and never have to clear leather once in anger, so that isn't really a cause, but we give folks reasons to turn to violence, and respond, and fear their neighbors enough to inject themselves into things with an armed response. That IS an issue. That we continue to dangle myths of self reliance and success by the sweat of the brow, while yanking opportunity and keeping folks disadvantaged, or at least from feeling that way with economic and education policies IS an issue.

You want safer streets? Then we need to turn the conversation from the tools used, and instead to root of the problem. The real problem, not the myth, not the romance, but the real, nitty gritty of the issue, and that is that a lot of folks feel that the crime is a valid alternative to drudging out a pittance of an existence, and that even the risk of jail or death is preferable to that. Economic freedom, decent health care, decent education, real opportunity to advance and get ahead, and very real physical safety issues, those are what we need to talk about, as opposed to the tools that folks use.

But folks would rather talk about guns, because it's easier to look at symptoms than treat the disease...
2012-08-30 11:23:23 AM  
5 votes:
You know what would stop a lot of gun violence?

More accessible mental health services.
2012-08-30 11:12:19 AM  
3 votes:
If this thread had a gun, this thread never would've happened.
2012-08-30 05:51:19 PM  
2 votes:
Advice to Barack Obama, and the Democratic Party:

Don't fight the Republicans on this one. Ignore it. If you fight them on it, you'll lose. Support for gun control is at the lowest point in almost 50 years. The number of guns and ammunition being sold is increasing every year (It's practically the only growth industry in the US in the last few years). After decades of decline, the number of hunting licenses has increased in the last few years. Then too, we have the Heller and McDonald decisions, which sharply limit the things you can do.

If you let the Republicans make an issue out of this, and you fight them, you will lose rural and suburban Democrats, and you won't *GAIN* anything for it. The number of people who consistently care about gun rights far outweigh (and out-spend, and out-vote) the number of people who consistently care about gun control.

In essence, this is a trap. If you want to win the election, don't fall for it.

//Not a Rethuglican or a Demonrat.
2012-08-30 04:35:31 PM  
2 votes:
t3.gstatic.comView Full Size

Which one of these guys signed a permanent assault weapon ban?

Signed a permanent assault-weapons ban as governor of the Bay State. "Deadly assault weapons have no place in Massachusetts," Romney said at the July 1, 2004, signing ceremony. "These guns are not made for recreation or self-defense. They are instruments of destruction with the sole purpose of hunting down and killing people."
2012-08-30 01:57:38 PM  
2 votes:

Pfactor: To answer your question directly, as long as you don't prove you are irresponsible with dangerous things like cars, guns, land mines, ninja stars, nuclear waste, etc. I have no issue with you owning them. I don't fear people who are responsible actors. If an irresponsible one comes up they end up dead or in jail and in either case have forfeited their right to bear arms (though I also know that such bans don't actually stop everyone from doing it anyway).

To answer your question indirectly, your line of logic follows the pattern of the reducto ad absurdem fallacy, whereby you extend a given position to an illogical conclusion and ask if that is an acceptable position. It's bad manners and it's intellectually dishonest because the illogically extended position is not logically equivalent to the original position.

I'm a gun owner, and the point I'm trying to make is that even the majority of gun enthusiasts I know (those who aren't invested in being right on the internet) would agree that there is some reasonable point when it comes to gun or weapon ownership where you draw a line and say "Ok, I'm all for personal liberty, but I don't think your average person needs to have access to that kind of firepower.

The only difference in that sense between myself and, clearly not you, but other more reasonable gun enthusiasts is where that line should be drawn. I would say that if an item has the potential to cause great harm but shows absolutely no reasonable home defense or sport use, then it makes sense to remove that item from public sale. In my mind, high capacity magazines fall easily within those guidelines. Anybody who knows their way around a gun should be able to more than adequately defend themselves with a standard magazine, if you need 30-100 shots to ward off your attacker, then you really have no business owning a firearm in the first place. Yes, your average experienced shooter can still do quite a bit of damage with a pocket full of magazines, but why outright provide people with the means by which to do so more easily? In the name of some arbitrary idea of personal freedom?

To live in a democratic society such as ours, with the quality of life and relative safety that is expected from such, you have to accept that concessions of "personal freedom" are made to ensure the society continues to function that way. In my mind, this means making sure that every guy with a chemical imbalance can't walk into their local sporting goods store and buy every item they need to go on a murderous rampage in the most efficient and deadly way possible. Yes, that can be a slippery slope, but it's reality. We don't live in a world of black and white where you can just make blanket statements like "Guns are good" or "Guns are bad" and act like there's absolutely no grey area in between, that's simply short-sighted and unrealistic.
2012-08-30 11:09:22 AM  
2 votes:

make me some tea: Okay I have a genuine question to ask the pro-gun folks around here: Why do you need these things?

(disclaimer: I'm not anti-gun, but I believe there should be limits on access to military-grade firearms for civilians)

Well, Obama has done nothing but expand gun rights in the last four years, so they need to get a good soundbite of him saying something anti-gun, like "I don't think we should allow unmedicated schizophrenic people to own their own bazookas without a preliminary background check."
2012-08-30 11:07:38 AM  
2 votes:

make me some tea: Okay I have a genuine question to ask the pro-gun folks around here: Why do you need these things?

Why should my right to own something be predicated on my need to own that thing?
2012-08-30 04:42:25 PM  
1 vote:

tangentman: Funny thing. Romney actually signed gun control legislation into law in MA when he was Governor. If Obama does respond, he should bring that up.

He should spend the debates doing just that.

Moderator: President Obama, your healthcare bill has received a large amount of scrutiny. Do you feel it was a success and is there anything about it that you would change?
Obama: Well, that's a good question. First, I'd like to say that Mitt Romney's signature legislation while he was Governor of Mass was a great start. Mitt Romney suggested it as a model for the nation some years ago and I took that to heart. His brave and honorable stand to fight for the uninsured is a great symbol for America. Without Mitt Romney, Obamacare would never have been considered for the nation.

Moderator: President Obama, during your first term, you expanded certain gun rights to the surprise of many. With the recent mass shootings in our nation, do you feel that was in error? What gun control issues do you see in a possible second term?
Obama: Well, that's another good question. You know, gun control legislation is something I truly believe in. And, like Mitt Romney, I support an assault weapons ban and the Brady bill. I am no hero for the NRA, just like Mitt Romney.

Repeat for abortion, gay marriage, stem cell research, the economy...
2012-08-30 04:00:44 PM  
1 vote:

SacriliciousBeerSwiller: So you admit that it's OK for the government to ban private ownership of RPGs, but the government has no right to ban guns? Explain. Because in my mind, to be consistent, you are either for private citizens having access to ALL weapons, OR you are misinterpreting the Amendment completely and it really is all under the umbrella of the "regulated militia". Otherwise, you're hemming and hawing.

No, I am not. And you are being purposely obtuse.

The 2nd Amendment, like many other parts of the Constitution contains an operative clause ("the right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed") and a prefatory clause ("well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State").

The operative clause gives a limitation on the power of the Federal Government. (Note that no where in Heller, or any other prior case, has the 2nd Amendment been held as enforceable against the States under the 14th Amendment. Whether or not Heller limits the power of States to ban or regulate handguns is still an open question currently working its way through the courts.) The prefatory clause serves as one explanation of why that limitation exists, but in general explanatory phrases in the Constitution are not interpreted to be exclusive, especially where only one example is provided. (The interpretory maxim "Inclusio unius est exclusio alterius" generally applies only to lists of multiple examples.)

So as to what the phrase "well regulated" means, the answer is "not much". The 2nd Amendment does not only protect the rights of people in a well regulated Militia to own firearms. It protects the right of the People to own and bear firearms so that in times of need they could, on their own without the permission of the government, form a "well regulated militia".

This makes sense given the way that militias operated at the time the Constitution was adopted. People didn't go out and buy firearms so they could join a militia (or vice-versa). When a militia was needed, the citizens formed and mobilized the militia using the personal arms that they already owned. To require that people first be part of a "well regulated militia" in order to be able to own a firearm wouldn't make much sense. Militias by their nature are generally not permanent or even long lasting organizations. If you had to be in a militia in order to own a firearm, then when the time came that we actually needed an armed militia, most people wouldn't have their own arms to use.
2012-08-30 03:45:51 PM  
1 vote:

make me some tea: Okay I have a genuine question to ask the pro-gun folks around here: Why do you need these things?

(disclaimer: I'm not anti-gun, but I believe there should be limits on access to military-grade firearms for civilians)

Because my Beretta was designed to hold 15 rounds. To artificially limit it to 10 rounds is just stupid. That's why.
2012-08-30 03:13:39 PM  
1 vote:
I don't think banning guns or ammo or clips is the answer, but maybe stronger background checks are.
2012-08-30 02:13:41 PM  
1 vote:
2012-08-30 02:08:39 PM  
1 vote:

gameshowhost: Can you imagine if 'driving' were listed in the BOR? Nitrous, 12" velocity stacks, and rocket fuel for all the vehicles on all the roads! O_O WOOGA WOO WOO YEEHAW

Which is precisely why it's so farking stupid when gun enthusiasts say shiat like "Well I can kill somebody with a car, why aren't cars illegal?"

That's precisely why we have regulations on how vehicles have to be built and how they perform, and have laws strictly governing how they're operated.

I can't go buy a formula-1 race car and go for a cruise down the interstate, nor can I drive a monster truck or bulldozer on public roads. I mean, it would be fun as shiat to do so, but it would cause an unreasonable risk to the safety of the drivers around me. This is, quite literally, the exact same logic that goes into reasonable gun regulations.
2012-08-30 01:50:25 PM  
1 vote:


*sits back, munches popcorn, happy he doesn't live in a psychotic violent gun-worshipping society*

2012-08-30 01:48:41 PM  
1 vote:

GAT_00: Would anyone else like to actually answer the question: Why is this needed?

GAT, I love ya, but that's probably not the best philosophical direction to go with this. Virtually everything that we do on a daily basis we don't "need" the right to do. I don't "need" a bed, air conditioning, and a refrigerator. And yes, I know, "but but but you don't kill people with those". We also don't "need" McDonalds Chicken McNuggets, Coca Cola, and super-size fries. And they kill a HELL of a lot more people than do 50-round magazines. We don't need motor vehicles, at least at the level that we currently have them. And they as well are far greater killers than civilians who possess .223 rifles with the pistol grip (one of the scary "assault rifles" that the former ban covered).

There's a metric shiat ton of stuff that kills people in this country that we don't "need". We don't just up and ban them. Not really the way our country works. Perhaps it's the way you think it should be. Hell, maybe it IS the way it should be. Most would disagree with you. And THAT occasionally gets banned too, when governments start getting banny.

Almost 100% of those people who own a "scary gun" do not, and will never, use it in an illegal or assaultative manner. That fact alone should be enough to refute calls for a ban on them.

Now, all that being said (and if you read this far without jumping in my face, good on ya), as an owner of nearly a dozen guns, I wouldn't cry a tear if 50-round magazines disappeared. But no pebble ever feels responsible for the avalanche, and banning things, rather than focusing on providing services to people, is a pretty goddamn big pebble in my opinion.
2012-08-30 01:44:48 PM  
1 vote:
An armed society is a polite society.

warisboring.comView Full Size

graphics8.nytimes.comView Full Size
2012-08-30 01:14:12 PM  
1 vote:

Dancin_In_Anson: GAT_00: Hey look, it's yet another gun thread full of DIA misdirection and refusal to actually answer questions.

Ask away. Please.

You have no need to waste time because I know you won't answer them. Just lie, misdirect and threadjack. You have no interest in honest debate.

Go away, nobody would miss you.
2012-08-30 01:01:41 PM  
1 vote:

itsdan: How much harder is it to use 3 or 4 30round magazines than 1 100 round magazine?

Not much, so then the question becomes why ban the 100 rounder other than as your comments indicate to makes you feel safe. It is like saying cars can only have 4 cylinder engines to reduce fatalities caused by speeding; it sounds neat but in practice does not do squat!

Instead of focusing on the tool focus on the doer, Both Uncle Fester in Tucson and Side Show Bob in Aurora had displayed the signs of mental illness that had been seen by many yet due to our current mental health system they were able to run around without getting the treatment they needed,
2012-08-30 12:18:53 PM  
1 vote:

Dancin_In_Anson: Blues_X: I think they were running more than sitting.

As opposed to returning fire

You mean when they were in one dark theater that a smoke bomb had been released in, and in the theater next door, where they couldn't even see the killer? Yeah opening fire in that situation sounds really logically sound.
2012-08-30 11:35:06 AM  
1 vote:

what_now: You know what would stop a lot of gun violence?

More accessible mental health services.

That's just crazy talk!
2012-08-30 11:22:41 AM  
1 vote:

make me some tea: Okay I have a genuine question to ask the pro-gun folks around here: Why do you need these things?

(disclaimer: I'm not anti-gun, but I believe there should be limits on access to military-grade firearms for civilians)

Military-grade firearms are to what we civilians currently have access to as military vehicles are to the H2. Maybe they share some characteristics, but only someone ignorant of how vehicles are built and used would believe the civilian version of the hummer is capable of performing military missions.
2012-08-30 11:21:58 AM  
1 vote:

Dancin_In_Anson: Blues_X: Because mass killings?

Well I guess you're right. The people that broke the laws regarding murder would be inclined to follow a high capacity ban.

I keep hearing that argument, but the recent mass killings involved guns that were purchased legally. Would they have pursued illegal means to gain more advanced guns? Who knows.

And just because some people will break the law to do it doesn't mean that it shouldn't still be regulated.
2012-08-30 11:08:53 AM  
1 vote:

Dancin_In_Anson: make me some tea: Why do you need these things?

Why not?

Well, there we go. The next campus or theater shooter will thank you for such an honest reply.
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