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Politics: Gun Control, Obamacare, tax increase... 
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Post Politics: Gun Control, Obamacare, tax increase...
Wondered if anybody else wanted to talk about these hot political topics. I will start on gun control. I do not agree with what Obama (and the common liberal) is trying to do in reinstating the federal assault weapons ban, limiting mag capacity, etc. What is the difference in carrying three, 10 rd magazines, rather than one 30 rd magazine? Limiting mag capacity accomplishes nothing. Even a novice can drop a mag and reload with another in 2 seconds or less. Also, an AR-15 is not an assault rife. AR doesn't even mean assault rifle, it was just a model number for the original gun manufactured by Armalite. An assault rifle is a fully automatic weapon, used for military and police purposes. Assault rifles are not sold to american civilians. They are illegal (well, technically a civilian may purchase a fully automatic weapon made prior to 1986: it involves paying a $200 tax stamp to the ATF, and going though a lot of paper work of which the whole process takes 3-6 months...and the gun is registered by the ATF. Also, those go for tens of thousands of dollars).

An AR-15 is just a tactical, semi-auto (1 trigger pull equals 1 fired round) rifle platform. It is chambered in 5.56 mm (.223 caliber) or 7.62 (.308 caliber). They can be used for hunting, home-defense, general shooting, and competition shooting. If I want one of these, it should be my right to be able to buy one and use it in a legal manner that I see fit. Since 2004, (when the federal assault weapons ban was allowed to expire) there have been less than 150 souls killed, and less than 300 injured by AR-15s in mass shootings. In a country of 300 million people, that is .00005 %. That is a very, very, very, very low percentage. My point being these proposed new laws are being brought about my mass shootings, not general gun crime. A mass shooting is such a low statistical event that it can't be predicted and can't be stopped.

I agree that it is probably a little too easy for anyone to procure a gun. I support checking for mental history in more detailed background checks, and support a requirement for a background check during a private sale (closing the misinterpreted "gun show loophole". Actually, there is no loop hole, private sellers have always been able to sell to another individual without requiring a background check). I will never support a national government gun registry. The government should not be able to look me up on a list and know exactly what guns that I have.

I know this was covered some in another thread, but now that the bill is being submitted, I just wondered how any of you felt about it.


Fri Jan 18, 2013 8:02 am
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Post Re: Politics: Gun Control, Obamacare, tax increase...
I, in large part, agree with you. The Sandy Hook massacre was a tragedy indeed, but never let that stop our politicians from "letting a crisis go to waste." I think it telling that when asked if the new initiatives proposed would have stopped Sandy Hook, the president evaded the question, because they wouldn't have. It is frustrating that on the front end we have these gun laws to try and keep them out of the hands of people who shouldn't have them or to punish people who use firearms to commit crimes, but then on the back end we have some judges or parole boards who go soft on sentencing.

I do not own a gun, and while I have held one or 2, have never even fired one. Like a lot of Americans, I have thought about making a purchase. At the end of the day I probably won't, but if recent reports are correct, Obama's efforts to reduce guns in the civilian population have had the reverse effect of flooding the nation with guns. Local gun shows and sporting goods stores here have been overrun with people looking to buy.


Fri Jan 18, 2013 9:31 am
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Post Re: Politics: Gun Control, Obamacare, tax increase...
Basic supply and demand; common $900 AR-15s are going for $2000 +. Basic 30 round magazines that were $11 each are now going for $50, if you can find them. Everybody is scared they won't be able to buy them in a few months.

Also, a point I meant to address is the fact that these new laws do nothing but punish law abiding citizens. Criminals aren't worried about following the law. If a bad guy wants a gun, he will steal one or worse kill for one. Now, that criminal has a deadly weapon and the law abiding citizen is defenseless because he chooses to play by the rules.


Fri Jan 18, 2013 10:28 am
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Post Re: Politics: Gun Control, Obamacare, tax increase...
I'm somewhat neutral on this position, my dad owns quite a few guns so i'm certainly not against people owning them, it's like Charles Bronson said in Death Wish 3- "Guns have they're uses, it's idiots with guns that worries me"

So I definitely support universal backgrounds checks to keep guns out of the hands of those idiots, I agree that limiting the number of rounds in a clip won't be as effective as people think, but that still dosen't mean that average person should just be able to buy 50-100 round clips off the internet legally, nobody save for military personel needs that kind of firepower. I think the NRA leaders are a bunch of wackjobs, Wayne LaPierre especially(armed guards in schools? Who seriously thinks that's a good idea? :roll:) , and they'e anti-Obama ads make them look like complete and utter morons.


Fri Jan 18, 2013 1:44 pm
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Post Re: Politics: Gun Control, Obamacare, tax increase...
Won't make a difference as far as making kids safer. Unless we become a police state, adding a few more layers of laws will not change a thing. Someone who doesn't mind killing themselves or being killed in the conduct of some spectacular final act will find a way. In Israel, where someone knows that they will be quickly shot if they pull out a gun to harm civilians, people instead walk into markets or buses with bombs strapped to their bodies. The problem is not the method, it is the determination of those who wish to perform the harm. That level of determination will not be deterred by making something more difficult to do. These are not the actions of ordinary people who suddenly become overwhelmed with hatred and, if given time to cool off, would eventually come to their senses. These are people who have descended so deep into rage that they stay in it for a prolonged period to fantasize, plan, and execute the crime, and their planning will overcome any obstacles short of constant surveillance. Trading any sort of freedom for a police state is not a good trade off for most Americans. Trading freedom for no gain, even if it is a freedom many don't feel they need, is not a good deal either.


Fri Jan 18, 2013 3:17 pm
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Post Re: Politics: Gun Control, Obamacare, tax increase...
CasualDad wrote:
Won't make a difference as far as making kids safer. Unless we become a police state, adding a few more layers of laws will not change a thing. Someone who doesn't mind killing themselves or being killed in the conduct of some spectacular final act will find a way. In Israel, where someone knows that they will be quickly shot if they pull out a gun to harm civilians, people instead walk into markets or buses with bombs strapped to their bodies. The problem is not the method, it is the determination of those who wish to perform the harm. That level of determination will not be deterred by making something more difficult to do. These are not the actions of ordinary people who suddenly become overwhelmed with hatred and, if given time to cool off, would eventually come to their senses. These are people who have descended so deep into rage that they stay in it for a prolonged period to fantasize, plan, and execute the crime, and their planning will overcome any obstacles short of constant surveillance. Trading any sort of freedom for a police state is not a good trade off for most Americans. Trading freedom for no gain, even if it is a freedom many don't feel they need, is not a good deal either.

I agree to an extent, but we can't just do absolutely nothing either, the majority of NRA members actually are in favor of universal background checks, but La Pierre wants people to think otherwise. What I think will end up happening is that there will be compromises made with the law and only some parts of it will actually pass, the universal background check stands the most chance of passing.


Fri Jan 18, 2013 5:11 pm
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Post Re: Politics: Gun Control, Obamacare, tax increase...
roastbeef_ajus wrote:
Wondered if anybody else wanted to talk about these hot political topics. I will start on gun control. I do not agree with what Obama (and the common liberal) is trying to do in reinstating the federal assault weapons ban, limiting mag capacity, etc. What is the difference in carrying three, 10 rd magazines, rather than one 30 rd magazine? Limiting mag capacity accomplishes nothing. Even a novice can drop a mag and reload with another in 2 seconds or less. Also, an AR-15 is not an assault rife. AR doesn't even mean assault rifle, it was just a model number for the original gun manufactured by Armalite. An assault rifle is a fully automatic weapon, used for military and police purposes. Assault rifles are not sold to american civilians. They are illegal (well, technically a civilian may purchase a fully automatic weapon made prior to 1986: it involves paying a $200 tax stamp to the ATF, and going though a lot of paper work of which the whole process takes 3-6 months...and the gun is registered by the ATF. Also, those go for tens of thousands of dollars).

An AR-15 is just a tactical, semi-auto (1 trigger pull equals 1 fired round) rifle platform. It is chambered in 5.56 mm (.223 caliber) or 7.62 (.308 caliber). They can be used for hunting, home-defense, general shooting, and competition shooting. If I want one of these, it should be my right to be able to buy one and use it in a legal manner that I see fit. Since 2004, (when the federal assault weapons ban was allowed to expire) there have been less than 150 souls killed, and less than 300 injured by AR-15s in mass shootings. In a country of 300 million people, that is .00005 %. That is a very, very, very, very low percentage. My point being these proposed new laws are being brought about my mass shootings, not general gun crime. A mass shooting is such a low statistical event that it can't be predicted and can't be stopped.

I agree that it is probably a little too easy for anyone to procure a gun. I support checking for mental history in more detailed background checks, and support a requirement for a background check during a private sale (closing the misinterpreted "gun show loophole". Actually, there is no loop hole, private sellers have always been able to sell to another individual without requiring a background check). I will never support a national government gun registry. The government should not be able to look me up on a list and know exactly what guns that I have.

I know this was covered some in another thread, but now that the bill is being submitted, I just wondered how any of you felt about it.


AR-15s are fun. My Dad owns them. Does he need to? I don't think so. But you're right in that AR-15s aren't really the problem. Handguns are. Handguns are not designed for hunting, but rather for killing people. Which is why the military should have them, and police should have them, and maybe even some specially-licensed people in high risk fields (cash transfer, security guards) but the average citizen should not. Rifles are fine, shotguns are fine (and make an ideal home defense weapon, for what it's worth) but handguns shouldn't be owned by civilians

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Fri Jan 18, 2013 5:18 pm
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Post Re: Politics: Gun Control, Obamacare, tax increase...
I just have one question:

Why would John and Jane civilian ever need a shotgun or a fully automatic rifle?

I get handguns for self-defense, I get single-shot rifles for hunting. But why should we need military-esque weapons?


Fri Jan 18, 2013 5:19 pm
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Post Re: Politics: Gun Control, Obamacare, tax increase...
patrick wrote:
I just have one question:

Why would John and Jane civilian ever need a shotgun or a fully automatic rifle?

I get handguns for self-defense, I get single-shot rifles for hunting. But why should we need military-esque weapons?


Well you don't shoot birds with a rifle, Patrick, you do it with a shotgun. Small game too, even deer in places where slugs are preferred over bullets. And shotguns cause far less harm to the nation than handguns

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Fri Jan 18, 2013 5:21 pm
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Post Re: Politics: Gun Control, Obamacare, tax increase...
Though the assault weapons ban was relatively non-restrictive and riddled with loopholes, the number of deaths from mass shootings was significantly lower during the period of the ban than it was in the years before or since. In fact, average deaths in mass shootings per year tripled after the ban expired. It would seem to follow that easier access to a weapon designed for the express purpose of killing multiple people in a short period of time would directly result in a higher number of deaths in the event of a mass shooting.

It has also been demonstrated numerous times that guns kept for home defense have a far better probability of injuring a friend or family member than a home invader. Other things being equal, a house that doesn't have a gun in it is safer to be in than a house that does.

While the number of arms in the possession of the American public dwarfs the number of arms in the possession of the authorities, it is questionable how much of a difference that would make in the event of a militaristic government takeover. Pro-gun people are understandably focused on the potential tyranny that might occur in the event of an across-the-board gun ban. One wishes that everyone would show the same concern about the very real and present tyranny of armed drone strikes overseas and the invasions of the Patriot Act at home that began in the immediate aftermath of 9/11. It is because of these things that the government wouldn't need to ban guns to beat us. We've already allowed them to amass everything they need, in the unlikely event that they decide to do so. The military no longer needs to send soldiers; therefore outgunning the soldiers is pointless.

As for the NRA, its leadership has slowly but surely morphed into the lobbying arm of the gun industry. I wouldn't look to them for advocacy on public safety issues any more than I'd look to the tobacco companies for advocacy on public health issues.

It is my opinion that several of the arguments made in favor of gun ownership are fig leaves for the fact that people simply like guns and they find it pleasurable to go shooting. There's nothing wrong with that, but it doesn't help the discourse to bury that fact beneath a mound of rationalizations. I myself am not a gun person, though I was raised in a gun household and I live in a gun state. I've had plenty of time to observe how people, both pro-gun and anti-gun, talk about and behave around guns.

I am in favor of sensible gun control. There is a legitimate public safety issue posed by deregulated gun ownership. The Second Amendment is not limitless. That said, I oppose all-out disarmament of the citizens (such as they've done in England and China) for the simple fact that somebody has to do the disarming, and I'm uncomfortable handing that level of authority to any governing body--let alone ours.

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Fri Jan 18, 2013 5:51 pm
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Post Re: Politics: Gun Control, Obamacare, tax increase...
From across the pond I find the American justification for guns (to fend off over-encroaching government) fucking crazy, brilliant, inspiring and disturbing all at once.

You crazy kids!!!

To be fair though Ken. We're nothing like China. Unlike our Army, our Police are both unarmed and weak as gnat's piss

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Fri Jan 18, 2013 7:00 pm
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Post Re: Politics: Gun Control, Obamacare, tax increase...
Kunz: I believe in the right to conceal carry handguns (legally, of course). The people of this nation have always been able to have a handgun, and should always be able to. When/if I move to a big city, bet your ass that I will have a concealed handgun in my vehicle at all times.

check out this video as to how a concealed handgun can save lives: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dwrgvqlc8DA

I bet these two bastards think twice about ever robbing anyone again.

Patrick? No shotguns? First of all, a 12 ga shotgun loaded with 000 buckshot is the best home defense weapon there is. Also, one needs a 12 gauge for turkey hunting and duck hunting. A 20 guage is best for dove and quail hunting. Also, skeet (clay pigeon) shooting is just really fun. Also, most rifles are not single-shot. Most hunting rifles are bolt-action that can hold 1 in the chamber and 5 in the magazine. Also, as I explained, fully automatic weapons are not sold to civilians.

Ken,

What about the stories of a gun actually saving lives in the home from intruders? I promise they are out there, though it seems the media only likes reporting when guns are used for malignant purposes.


Fri Jan 18, 2013 7:16 pm
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Post Re: Politics: Gun Control, Obamacare, tax increase...
roastbeef_ajus wrote:
Kunz: I believe in the right to conceal carry handguns (legally, of course). The people of this nation have always been able to have a handgun, and should always be able to. When/if I move to a big city, bet your ass that I will have a concealed handgun in my vehicle at all times.

check out this video as to how a concealed handgun can save lives: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dwrgvqlc8DA

I bet these two bastards think twice about ever robbing anyone again.

Patrick? No shotguns? First of all, a 12 ga shotgun loaded with 000 buckshot is the best home defense weapon there is. Also, one needs a 12 gauge for turkey hunting and duck hunting. A 20 guage is best for dove and quail hunting. Also, skeet (clay pigeon) shooting is just really fun. Also, most rifles are not single-shot. Most hunting rifles are bolt-action that can hold 1 in the chamber and 5 in the magazine. Also, as I explained, fully automatic weapons are not sold to civilians.

Ken,

What about the stories of a gun actually saving lives in the home from intruders? I promise they are out there, though it seems the media only likes reporting when guns are used for malignant purposes.

Agreed, for all the gun crimes committed in the U.S., the home invasion rate is very low(18%)because of criminals fearing that a homeowner will be armed, whereas home invasions are much higher in the U.K.(53%) because criminals know for a fact that most homeowners will not be armed, so they have less reason to be afraid of breaking and entering into someone's home.


Fri Jan 18, 2013 7:21 pm
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Post Re: Politics: Gun Control, Obamacare, tax increase...
Vexer wrote:
Agreed, for all the gun crimes committed in the U.S., the home invasion rate is very low(18%)because of criminals fearing that a homeowner will be armed, whereas home invasions are much higher in the U.K.(53%) because criminals know for a fact that most homeowners will not be armed, so they have less reason to be afraid of breaking and entering into someone's home.

And yet, I'd rather suffer a home invasion than being a victim of a mass shooting spree. I'm sure that most of us here would share that preference. Breaking and entering isn't quite on the same level crime-wise as homicide.

That being said, I'm less interested in increasing gun control than I am in seeing the underlying issues fixed. Gun control is a medication rather than the cure. Find out what factors in our society create people like Adam Landa, and try to fix them: balancing social inequality, reduction in religiosity of this nation, putting more emphasis on empathy than on one's individual wants and rights when raising kids. Japan is a much less individualistic society than ours, and they have far less in the way of violent crime and random acts of mass violence than we do proportionally- I don't believe for a second that this is a coincidence. I'm not saying that we should go their route and put the vast majority of the emphasis on adherence to the group's needs in changing this society, but a good dose of that kind of thinking wouldn't hurt.

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Fri Jan 18, 2013 7:28 pm
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Post Re: Politics: Gun Control, Obamacare, tax increase...
roastbeef_ajus wrote:
Kunz: I believe in the right to conceal carry handguns (legally, of course). The people of this nation have always been able to have a handgun, and should always be able to. When/if I move to a big city, bet your ass that I will have a concealed handgun in my vehicle at all times.


That argument is counterfeit. In the first sixty years of our country's history (and, more to the point, when the Bill of Rights was written) a handgun was an unreliable single-shot weapon with a 45 second reloading time. The idea of anyone committing a shooting spree with one was beyond comprehension. It has no bearing on whether or not people should have the right to a gun today.

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Fri Jan 18, 2013 7:31 pm
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Post Re: Politics: Gun Control, Obamacare, tax increase...
The Oklahoma City Bombing, Columbine, and the massive killings on 9/11/2001 all happened during the time the assault weapons ban was in place. Doing something just because it makes people feel as though something is being done doesn't work for me. Most of the firearms related killing in this country takes place in progressive urban environments that have plenty of gun restrictions. Meanwhile the places in this country where people tend to have the least restrictive access to guns are among the lowest in murders. It is not the availability of guns that is the problem. I'd bet it likely would not even show as a significant contributing factor if it were possible to map the density of guns available vs. the density of murders accross the US geography.


Fri Jan 18, 2013 7:42 pm
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Post Re: Politics: Gun Control, Obamacare, tax increase...
Vexer wrote:
roastbeef_ajus wrote:
Kunz: I believe in the right to conceal carry handguns (legally, of course). The people of this nation have always been able to have a handgun, and should always be able to. When/if I move to a big city, bet your ass that I will have a concealed handgun in my vehicle at all times.

check out this video as to how a concealed handgun can save lives: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dwrgvqlc8DA

I bet these two bastards think twice about ever robbing anyone again.

Patrick? No shotguns? First of all, a 12 ga shotgun loaded with 000 buckshot is the best home defense weapon there is. Also, one needs a 12 gauge for turkey hunting and duck hunting. A 20 guage is best for dove and quail hunting. Also, skeet (clay pigeon) shooting is just really fun. Also, most rifles are not single-shot. Most hunting rifles are bolt-action that can hold 1 in the chamber and 5 in the magazine. Also, as I explained, fully automatic weapons are not sold to civilians.

Ken,

What about the stories of a gun actually saving lives in the home from intruders? I promise they are out there, though it seems the media only likes reporting when guns are used for malignant purposes.

Agreed, for all the gun crimes committed in the U.S., the home invasion rate is very low(18%)because of criminals fearing that a homeowner will be armed, whereas home invasions are much higher in the U.K.(53%) because criminals know for a fact that most hmeowners will not be armed, so they have less reason to be afraid of breaking and entering into someone's home.


Damn right.

"Burglers" in this country get laughable sentences. Invading a family home is barbaric

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Fri Jan 18, 2013 7:57 pm
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Post Re: Politics: Gun Control, Obamacare, tax increase...
Ragnarok73 wrote:
Vexer wrote:
Agreed, for all the gun crimes committed in the U.S., the home invasion rate is very low(18%)because of criminals fearing that a homeowner will be armed, whereas home invasions are much higher in the U.K.(53%) because criminals know for a fact that most homeowners will not be armed, so they have less reason to be afraid of breaking and entering into someone's home.

And yet, I'd rather suffer a home invasion than being a victim of a mass shooting spree. I'm sure that most of us here would share that preference. Breaking and entering isn't quite on the same level crime-wise as homicide.

That being said, I'm less interested in increasing gun control than I am in seeing the underlying issues fixed. Gun control is a medication rather than the cure. Find out what factors in our society create people like Adam Landa, and try to fix them: balancing social inequality, reduction in religiosity of this nation, putting more emphasis on empathy than on one's individual wants and rights when raising kids. Japan is a much less individualistic society than ours, and they have far less in the way of violent crime and random acts of mass violence than we do proportionally- I don't believe for a second that this is a coincidence. I'm not saying that we should go their route and put the vast majority of the emphasis on adherence to the group's needs in changing this society, but a good dose of that kind of thinking wouldn't hurt.


I would not. A home invasion is several orders of magnitude more likely to happen than a mass shooting. How do I know the intent of the home intruders? Maybe they just want to steal my tv; but then again, maybe they are sick fucks who want to rape and kill my family. I don't want to find out and will put someone down if they intrude in to my home. A mass shooting is such a low statistical event, it cannot be predicted. You have a better chance of getting struck by lighting (in fact one is twice as likely to get struck by lightning) than being involved in a mass shooting. Despite the despicable nature, what has happened to a few (a very very very very very slim few) should not be used to punish the civil liberties of an entire population (in any context).

I do, however, whole heartedly agree with you in that we should try to erode the underlying problem in society. Ultimately, a gun is just a tool. It will never ever pull its on trigger.


Fri Jan 18, 2013 8:10 pm
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Post Re: Politics: Gun Control, Obamacare, tax increase...
roastbeef_ajus wrote:
Ragnarok73 wrote:
Vexer wrote:
Agreed, for all the gun crimes committed in the U.S., the home invasion rate is very low(18%)because of criminals fearing that a homeowner will be armed, whereas home invasions are much higher in the U.K.(53%) because criminals know for a fact that most homeowners will not be armed, so they have less reason to be afraid of breaking and entering into someone's home.

And yet, I'd rather suffer a home invasion than being a victim of a mass shooting spree. I'm sure that most of us here would share that preference. Breaking and entering isn't quite on the same level crime-wise as homicide.

That being said, I'm less interested in increasing gun control than I am in seeing the underlying issues fixed. Gun control is a medication rather than the cure. Find out what factors in our society create people like Adam Landa, and try to fix them: balancing social inequality, reduction in religiosity of this nation, putting more emphasis on empathy than on one's individual wants and rights when raising kids. Japan is a much less individualistic society than ours, and they have far less in the way of violent crime and random acts of mass violence than we do proportionally- I don't believe for a second that this is a coincidence. I'm not saying that we should go their route and put the vast majority of the emphasis on adherence to the group's needs in changing this society, but a good dose of that kind of thinking wouldn't hurt.


I would not. A home invasion is several orders of magnitude more likely to happen than a mass shooting. How do I know the intent of the home intruders? Maybe they just want to steal my tv; but then again, maybe they are sick fucks who want to rape and kill my family. I don't want to find out and will put someone down if they intrude in to my home. A mass shooting is such a low statistical event, it cannot be predicted. You have a better chance of getting struck by lighting (in fact one is twice as likely to get struck by lightning) than being involved in a mass shooting. Despite the despicable nature, what has happened to a few (a very very very very very slim few) should not be used to punish the civil liberties of an entire population (in any context).

I do, however, whole heartedly agree with you in that we should try to erode the underlying problem in society. Ultimately, a gun is just a tool. I will never ever pull its on trigger.

Yeah, I was refering to "hot" burglaries where crminals plan to kill the occupants in addition to stealing, it's such a problem in the U.K. that some have called the country "worse then South Africa" in regards to crime, so I feel much safer living with guns then without. Having so many guns in the U.S. makes most people think twice about whether they really want to risk breaking into someone's home and possibly finding themselves at the business end of a firearm.

I agree that we need mental health reform, one of the main reasons for these tragedies is due to our poor treatment of the mentally ill, in the late 70s-early 80s, many mental health facilities were shutdown and the patients, having nowhere to go ended up either on the streets or in jail, whenever a state wants to cut funding, mental health is the first place they look. James Holmes behavior should've raised a ton of red flags with the university staff, you'd think after V-Tech they would've taken any suspicious actions seriously.


Fri Jan 18, 2013 8:14 pm
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Post Re: Politics: Gun Control, Obamacare, tax increase...
roastbeef_ajus wrote:
What about the stories of a gun actually saving lives in the home from intruders? I promise they are out there, though it seems the media only likes reporting when guns are used for malignant purposes.

What I look for is data-driven information that incorporates the whole cloth. You can't really count on the scattering of incidents reported in the news to make an accurate case either way, as it basically amounts to anecdotal evidence.

That said, when people rag on "the media", they're typically talking about media they don't like. But it's all media--Fox News, MSNBC, The Daily Show, Rush Limbaugh, Alex Jones, Mother Jones, whatever. For everything that gets reported, you can usually find someone reporting just about the exact opposite thing somewhere in our great cultural mediation-o-sphere.

Vexer wrote:
Agreed, for all the gun crimes committed in the U.S., the home invasion rate is very low(18%)because of criminals fearing that a homeowner will be armed, whereas home invasions are much higher in the U.K.(53%) because criminals know for a fact that most homeowners will not be armed, so they have less reason to be afraid of breaking and entering into someone's home.

"Home invasion" is not actually a crime in most places in the US. I don't know if it is in the UK or not. At any rate, I'm inclined to distrust any statistic that purports to describe the rate of home invasions, as it is most likely a grouping of other things that actually are considered crimes here.

There are also two elements to the statement: the information (US home invasion rate vs. that of the UK) and the conclusion (criminals in the US must be more afraid of getting hurt as opposed to criminals in the UK). The information can be confirmed or disconfirmed, but the conclusion sounds like an incidence of mistaking correlation for causation to me. Not that I'm necessarily arguing that it's wrong, but it is conjecture.

CasualDad wrote:
The Oklahoma City Bombing, Columbine, and the massive killings on 9/11/2001 all happened during the time the assault weapons ban was in place. Doing something just because it makes people feel as though something is being done doesn't work for me.

I am talking specifically about mass shootings, which is the crime that the assault weapons ban is designed to address (and, arguably, the crime that assault weapons are designed to commit). Terrorist attacks involving bombs or hijacked planes are neither here nor there.

That said, even incorporating the Columbine massacre, deaths in mass shootings still tripled after the ban, and were still higher prior to the ban as well. Those are facts that can be backed up with research, rather than an appeal to feelings. If anything, it is an appeal to feelings to say that the ban didn't work and point to those high-profile events that occurred during that time period, without regard to how they fit into the larger picture of all crimes and the effects of preventative measures.

CasualDad wrote:
Most of the firearms related killing in this country takes place in progressive urban environments that have plenty of gun restrictions. Meanwhile the places in this country where people tend to have the least restrictive access to guns are among the lowest in murders. It is not the availability of guns that is the problem. I'd bet it likely would not even show as a significant contributing factor if it were possible to map the density of guns available vs. the density of murders accross the US geography.
The gun restrictions are a response to the crime rates, rather than the other way around. Places with lower crime rates are going to have less anti-crime legislation on the books, including gun legislation, because they have not had the crimes to prompt said legislation.

The lower crime rate in areas with less gun restrictions (e.g. in rural areas as opposed to urban centers) is not, in itself, an indication either way of the effects of gun restrictions on gun crimes. It is necessary to look at which restrictions are implemented, for how long, and how they affect crime within their jurisdiction while they're operational compared to before and after.

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For general reading purposes, here's an interesting article that traces the history of gun control all the way back to the start of the nation. It's pretty interesting how attitudes have flexed over the years and what the social drivers have been for the different iterations of gun legislation and schools of thought on the Second Amendment.

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Fri Jan 18, 2013 8:43 pm
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