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Old 01-09-2013, 11:52 AM
 
1,750 posts, read 3,373,432 times
Reputation: 788

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chicago South Sider View Post
The guns kill people on their own?
I think part of the argument becomes stricter gun laws, and stricter back ground checks; because it is too damn easy for some psycho to get their hands on a gun.

For the record, I do not support a complete ban on guns, but definitely support a ban on assault rifles. I know the AR-15 is getting a lot of press these days, but seriously, outside of military use, how are they neccessary? I don't think our forefathers had this in mind when the 2nd amendment was written.
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Old 01-09-2013, 12:02 PM
 
1,002 posts, read 1,774,058 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by J. Lundegaard View Post
To a point, I agree with you: much of gun control isn't actually about saving lives, but wanting to control your opponents (and I mean opponents in the sense of gun supporters v. anti-gunners). If the gun control folks really were all about saving lives, there are much better ways to go about it then writing crappy laws that infringe on all law-abiding citizens' freedoms but that won't even make a dent in violent crime. Repeated gun violence tends to happen over and over again in the same areas, and tackling the problems in those areas would easily be much more effective in reducing crime (e.g., more police, better economy and education, ending the war on drugs, etc.).

But I think the rift between gun supporters and anti-gunners is also a cultural one, much like the culture wars over abortion, gay marriage/equality, etc. One side finds a practice abhorrent, and instead of just taking a "live and let live" attitude, they want to use government coercion to force the other side to give up its practice.
There are points I disagree with you on, and some that I agree.

I disagree that "gun control folks" are not really about saving lives, just because they are directly attacking the gun problem in the states. Also, the problem with bringing "freedom" into discussion is that it brings up the assumption that the current interruption of the 2nd is what it truly meant in it's inception, which it is not.

I agree that some of the gun laws are "crappy", but they are only "crappy" because they are only regional. Gun laws will not have much affect until they are national, because, as progunners always like to point out, criminals don't follow the law (as do they "legal" gun buyers that sell their guns to criminals).

I also agree that we need to deal with societies problems; education, economy etc.. but guns are also part of societies problem.

It's difficult not to find a "practice" "abhorrent" when it's consequences are so devastating. It's easy to take a "live and let live" attitude when you aren't the one being affected by a "practice".
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Old 01-09-2013, 12:09 PM
 
Location: Bucktown
130 posts, read 169,399 times
Reputation: 151
Quote:
Originally Posted by prelude91 View Post
I think part of the argument becomes stricter gun laws, and stricter back ground checks; because it is too damn easy for some psycho to get their hands on a gun.

For the record, I do not support a complete ban on guns, but definitely support a ban on assault rifles. I know the AR-15 is getting a lot of press these days, but seriously, outside of military use, how are they neccessary? I don't think our forefathers had this in mind when the 2nd amendment was written.
Does it matter? The forefathers had no conception of TV or the Internet when the First Amendment was written, but we have had no problems extending the First Amendment to both. This explains why you can write on this board without fear of government reprisal and blowhards Rachel Maddow and Bill O'Reilly can pontificate on their crappy news shows without fear of same.

Also, the AR-15 (a civilian weapon) has a lot of uses. Self-defense, hunting, and target shooting are the three big ones. It looks scary (it's black, has a pistol grip, etc.), but it's really just a fairly normal semi-automatic rifle. (And before someone goes off on the "who needs an assault weapon to hunt" business, AR15s are used for hunting all the time. They are mainly used for medium-sized animals, like feral pigs, coyotes, beavers, small to medium sized deer, javelina, etc.).
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Old 01-09-2013, 02:12 PM
 
Location: Chicago
4,745 posts, read 5,527,279 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by prelude91 View Post
I think part of the argument becomes stricter gun laws, and stricter back ground checks; because it is too damn easy for some psycho to get their hands on a gun.
Do you really think that will change anything? Making it more difficult for law-abiding citizens to get guns isn't going to stop crooks from getting them. This is so simple that a second-grader should get it. It would be just like the war on drugs, a pathetic and miserable failure.
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Old 01-09-2013, 03:18 PM
 
1,750 posts, read 3,373,432 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chicago South Sider View Post
Do you really think that will change anything? Making it more difficult for law-abiding citizens to get guns isn't going to stop crooks from getting them. This is so simple that a second-grader should get it. It would be just like the war on drugs, a pathetic and miserable failure.
Well something has to be done; because there is clearly a gun problem in this country. Accepting status quo is never the answer. Perhaps everyone should own a flame thrower and bazooka.

That is like saying why have airport security or homeland security, when terrorists will still be able to attack anyway, your just making life harder for law-abiding citizens.
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Old 01-09-2013, 03:25 PM
 
Location: Chicago
4,745 posts, read 5,527,279 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by prelude91 View Post
Well something has to be done; because there is clearly a gun problem in this country. Accepting status quo is never the answer. Perhaps everyone should own a flame thrower and bazooka.

That is like saying why have airport security or homeland security, when terrorists will still be able to attack anyway, your just making life harder for law-abiding citizens.
The problems that this country faces go much deeper than guns. I understand that you are afraid but just know that this will change nothing. Crooks will still get their hands on guns. They'll just be a little more expensive.

But you are right about one point, doing the right thing or wrong thing is better than doing nothing at all.
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Old 01-09-2013, 03:27 PM
 
14,802 posts, read 17,552,336 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chicago South Sider View Post
The problems that this country faces go much deeper than guns. I understand that you are afraid but just know that this will change nothing. Crooks will still get their hands on guns. They'll just be a little more expensive.
I tend to agree. I think it's way too late for this country to change its love for guns. It doesn't matter if they are legal or illegal so they may as well be legal as they are. Like drugs.
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Old 01-09-2013, 04:00 PM
 
1,750 posts, read 3,373,432 times
Reputation: 788
Quote:
Originally Posted by Chicago South Sider View Post
The problems that this country faces go much deeper than guns. I understand that you are afraid but just know that this will change nothing. Crooks will still get their hands on guns. They'll just be a little more expensive.

But you are right about one point, doing the right thing or wrong thing is better than doing nothing at all.
I actually agree, this country has dug itself in such a deep hole with crime and guns that fixing it will be nearly impossible, and if some psycho wants to kill 20 people before killing himself there is nothing that can be done.
With that said, to just do nothing is unacceptable as well.
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Old 01-10-2013, 06:28 AM
 
1,002 posts, read 1,774,058 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by J. Lundegaard View Post
My Response:

Murders (which are usually committed with guns) and violent crime (which is sometimes committed with guns -- e.g., armed robbery, rape) have fallen hugely over the last 20 years, at the same time that CCW laws have been enacted and the U.S. has been awash with new guns. Using your same reasoning you apply to the UK example, that is evidence alone that CCW and more guns work.

By the way, note what I'm NOT trying to do here: I'm actually not sure I believe in the "more guns, less crime" theory put forth by John Lott, Gary Kleck, and others (including commenter prelude91). I'm actually honest enough to say that I think the jury is still out on that one. What I'm trying to do is show you that if you want to use your simple reasoning to show that the UK gun ban works (crime is up, law enacted, crime is down), we could easily do the same for the U.S. But my guess is that you only want to use that reasoning when it suits your position (pro-gun control), but ignore it or qualify it when it leads to a result you don't want (more guns/CCW, less crimes).


My thoughts on the UK gun ban:

A few caveats: for purposes of arguing I am assuming as true that the UK gun ban actually worked. In reality, I think the UK gun example is wrong for so many other reasons but I didn't want to distract from my main argument. Here are my main problems with the UK gun ban:

(1) school schootings weren't really even that much of a problem before the UK ban so we don't even know if the gun ban itself had anything to do with the reduction in school schootings
(2) violent crime has actually gone up in the UK following the gun ban, which makes sense because once you disarm law-abiding citizens, the deterrent effect goes down and criminals become more brazen (it's the same reasons why shooters love gun-free zones, b/c they know law-abiding citizens, by defintion, will follow the law and be gunless)
(3) comparing the UK and US is hard because the US is so much larger than the UK, and the US has a much larger number of metropolitan areas (those with a population of 250,000 or more, which is where most gun crime is situated).
(4) the UK does not have a second amendment that guarantees the possession and use of firearms for its citzens.

Also, your entire thesis is probably wrong, as recognized by even the BBC (not a gun-friendly source): BBC News | UK | Handgun crime 'up' despite ban

In the end, I don't disagree with you: gun crime in America is a problem (although not nearly as large a problem as it seems -- cars, medical negligence, and drownings pose a much greater risk). But if you want to tackle gun crime -- particularly murders -- there are much better ways to do this than banning guns, which is a very hard remedy on all the law-abiding citizens in the US who own guns and not a very effective one at that. As I said above, I think the gun control debate is a cultural war for many. They don't like gun culture and the idea that some people have guns and will use them for self-defense, hunting, shooting sports, or even for government revolt if it ever comes of that. They don't like gun culture and they want to shut it down using the force of government (which, ironically, is backed up by the use of guns). You, of course, may not be one of these people-- I don't know.
Violent crime includes quite a number of different things from rape and murder (as you noted) to assault and battery, home invasion, robbery, "armed robbery" (which is quite often a knife)... Using violent crime as a way to determine the success of relaxed gun laws is a huge stretch. There are other social issues that affect crime, so it's too simple to determine that relaxed gun policy has anything to do with downward shifts in violent crime.

As for the UK and my "thesis", this is where looking at specifics become important. The BBC article you point to talks about the first 3 years post ban, but gun crimes have decreased on a yearly basis for 7 years leading up to 2012. It's also important to understand that a large portion of "gun crimes" in the UK are performed with air-guns and imitation guns, so the use of actual guns that are used in crimes in the UK is significantly lower than the official recorded number. I've always stated that gun bans are long term strategies, and that lowering of gun crime rates will happen over time, which they have in the UK. The lowering of gun crime in the UK is also more substantial than the lowering of "violent crime" in the UK, which is still a big problem... This is different from the US, as you put fourth the argument that overall violent crime in the US drops.

As for your guess that I'm using what suits me etc... I would agree with you if the "results" showed that relaxed gun laws work better than gun bans, but relaxed gun laws just don't show that. All I really care about at the end of the day is results, and I don't care about whether people are free to own guns or not, I don't care if people love or hate guns etc... All I care about is that there are no gun crimes (and other crimes of course), so even though I usually lean towards the Dems, I really don't care how the results come about and who gets them done.

I'll address your 4 points about the UK ban;

1) That fact still stands that there hasn't been a shooting in a school in the UK since 1996, and that was a long time ago. School shootings in general are pretty rare, but they're probability is greatly increase by giving people easier access to guns.
2) I've partly address the violent crime issue in the UK. A lot of that is knife crime, and a lot of "gun crime" is performed with replicas and air-guns.
3) Comparing any country is hard, but comparing first world countries with diverse populations, economies and legal systems that have more similarities to each other than developing countries is easier. It seems more and more like the US (or at least certain populations) refuses to learn from places outside of itself out of some stubborn need to preserve what some people belief is their god given right, or some sort of cultural identity.
4) Correct in a way; the UK does not have a 2nd, but the meaning of the 2nd as it stands today has also been twisted from its original intention to suit the production and sales of firearms to the public. Why else would the NRA fight so hard for aid in it's transformation?

All I care about is that more lives are spared from gun violence... yes, there are other things like transport deaths etc... and those things also have to be addressed. And no I don't think guns are tools like cars, and I've stated too many times why in previous posts. I don't personally care about the culture war, I couldn't care less is someone enjoys shooting at a target or not, but I that is not the bottom line for me. I understand how deep rooted gun culture in the US is, and how difficult a ban would be, but I don't believe arming everyone and allowing them to walk the streets packing heat is the best long term strategy to stop tackle gun crime, because there are so many variables that can and do go wrong from accidental shootings to arms dealing and further arming criminals. The only way to truly attack criminals in the long term is to find ways to cut off supply, and let their supply dry up.

Regarding the irony of the government being armed, it's not that much of an irony because people are not trying to disarm the government, they are trying to limit access to just anybody. We elect the government to do their jobs (part of which is to use force when needed and warranted) and if we are not happy with them, we elect different people.
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Old 01-10-2013, 09:10 AM
 
Location: Chicago, IL
229 posts, read 466,148 times
Reputation: 246
NRA Logic - "There has been another mass shooting as a result of guns? Let's blame video games and remember folks, buy more guns!"
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