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Target’s New Gun Policy

As gun fetishists all over the country continue to insist on their right to carry weapons into restaurants and other private businesses, Target has announced that is now going to “ask” people not to bring guns into their stores. And for some reason, they think this is some kind of close call.

Target announced Wednesday that it will ask shoppers to keep firearms out of its stores, after battling protests over the store’s gun policy came to a head when a loaded gun was found in a store’s toy aisle last month.

In an update from interim CEO John Mulligan to Target’s team members, Mulligan declared, “Our approach has always been to follow local laws, and of course, we will continue to do so. But starting today we will also respectfully request that guests not bring firearms to Target–even in communities where it is permitted by law.”

“This is a complicated issue,” Mulligan wrote, “but it boils down to a simple belief: Bringing firearms to Target creates an environment that is at odds with the family-friendly shopping and work experience we strive to create.”

The announcement by one of the largest retailers in America comes after a string of other companies have instituted no-gun policies. Several, including Chipotle and Starbucks, announced soft policies similar to Target’s over the past few months that simply ask customers not to bring their companies. Mulligan’s announcement did not specify whether it will enforce a gun ban against customers. A number of other companies have flat-out bans.

I don’t see why this is even remotely a “complex issue.” Hell no, you can’t carry a gun into a business if that business doesn’t want you to do so. You know where this assholes never try to carry a gun? Into a bank. Why? Because they’d be on the ground in a New York minute if they tried. And rightly so. Businesses get robbed all the time, what reasonable person could possibly believe that they should just allow people to walk in the door with a gun?

Of course, we’re not dealing with reasonable people. Anyone who thinks that they have a right to take their AR-15 into a restaurant or a retail outlet shouldn’t be allowed to own one. That alone is prima facie evidence that they should not own a gun.

Comments

  1. D. C. Sessions says

    Well, Ed, there have already been a few instances of people thinking that their State’s open-carry policy trumps TSA policy on carrying guns on planes. So I’m not so where what (if any) limits they recognize.

  2. dingojack says

    Target has guests?!? I thought they called ‘em suckers, sheepie or rubes.
    :/ Dingo

  3. raven says

    1. A killer walks into Target with an AR-15 and shoots as many people as they can until the cops arrive and the obligatory gun battle ends it.

    2. A Second Amendment worshipper with an AR-15 walks into Target, wanders the aisles, and then buys a Cliven Bundy doll for his kid.

    How do you tell a Good Guy with a gun from a Bad Guy with a gun?

    You can’t. You just have to take your chances or quietly exit the place and hope you make it.

  4. StevoR : Free West Papua, free Tibet, let the Chagossians return! says

    @ ^ raven : “How do you tell a Good Guy with a gun from a Bad Guy with a gun?”

    The good guy is you.

    The bad guy is the guy you shoot or the guy who shoots you first.

    The problem is, the bad guy thinks the exact same thing you do.

    Maybe.

    You’ll / We’ll never know because if you’re a good guy – or maybe a bad one – you’ll be quicker on your trigger finger.

    Clear as mud eh?

  5. StevoR : Free West Papua, free Tibet, let the Chagossians return! says

    For certain values of “you” o’course.

    Just as ‘X’ can mean anything.

  6. John Pieret says

    Businesses get robbed all the time, what reasonable person could possibly believe that they should just allow people to walk in the door with a gun?

    But … but … how do you stop a bad guy with a gun from robbing the store unless there is a good guy with a gun there? All the other people crowded in the store are depending on the good guy to to shoot the bad guy with his highly automatic weapon! What could possibly go wrong?

  7. Childermass says

    I rather doubt that robbery prevention is any motive for Target. After all an actual criminal intent of getting money via armed stickup will conceal the weapon unit it is time to point it at someone and would not obey the policy anyways.

    No what Target is undoubtedly worried about is some idiot redneck getting people killed or injured by trying to stop an armed robbery with a gun. Yeah there is a reason why pretty much everyone employed by a corporation who even remotely deal with the public and/or money is told to simply hand it over (and has probably signed a piece of paper saying they will do just that).

  8. dingojack says

    Raven – I’d argue the whole ‘with a gun’ thing automatically places these hypothetical persons into the latter category.*
    The right of the public to be safe trumps a tosser’s right to overcompensate for their own inadequacies by waiving an AR-15 around in public.

    Dingo
    ——–
    * For example: swap ‘AR-15′ with ‘explosives filled vest’, would you consider a person wearing such a thing as ever being ‘a good guy’? How about ‘dirty thermonuclear backpack bomb’? Or how about ‘container full of active Ebolavirus’ (The 2nd amendment does not define ‘arms’).

  9. A Masked Avenger says

    The “close call” is about how to handle it without getting embroiled in boycotts or other annoying side shows. It IS a no brainer that they can set their own rules for their premises, but how they express it might affect business.

  10. A Masked Avenger says

    “… a tosser’s right to overcompensate for their own inadequacies…”

    Ha Ha! Gun owners have little dicks! And little dicks are bad, because big dicks are what manly men put to the wimminz. Amirite? Amirite?

    *crickets*

  11. says

    Where I work the only people allowed to intervene at all in a robbery or shoplifting situation is the loss prevention department. The rest of us, even the Store Manager, would be fired for even stepping outside to get the license plate number. We’re to just stay in our own department, call LP, and give a description of what we saw, and then let them take it from there.

    There are just too many things that can go horribly wrong, and it’s impractical to train everybody appropriately to handle it. And training matters. Most of the stories of good guys with a gun that actually help- at least the ones that make the news, you almost always see “off duty officer” “former cop” “army veteran” or something like that- people who have been professionally trained in how to handle a weapon in combat. Don’t see much in the way of random yahoos…

    I’m not sure what corporate policy is regarding weapons in the store. The mall we are located at bans weapons, so it really doesn’t matter what our own corporate overlords think of the matter.

  12. colnago80 says

    Re dingojack @ #8

    How about an HIV positive individual who goes around spitting on people or biting them?

  13. raven says

    Raven – I’d argue the whole ‘with a gun’ thing automatically places these hypothetical persons into the latter category.*

    You pretty much have to assume some guy(s) with AR-15’s in Target are Bad Guys. And stay away and leave as quickly and unobstrusively as possible.

    1. If you guess wrong, nothing happens to you except you have to go to another store.

    2. If you guess right, people are dead but you aren’t one of them.

    Given the risk-reward profile, the default is to assume dangerous.

  14. D. C. Sessions says

    The bad guy is the guy you shoot or the guy who shoots you first.

    If he shoots you first, he’s the good guy — self defense!

    It’s only a matter of time before we get a critical mass of open-carry heroes. And then all it will take is a loud noise.

  15. dingojack says

    Raven – total agree. However in order to reduce the likelihood of any kind of problem, ban guns in public places. It’s a public safety issue.
    Dingo
    ——–
    Masked Avenger – dunno, they seem to think so, take it up with them.
    SLC – or what about people with Hansen’s Disease or Warts shedding skin cells on people? @@ (You can do much better than that).

  16. Nick Gotts says

    “… a tosser’s right to overcompensate for their own inadequacies…”

    Ha Ha! Gun owners have little dicks! And little dicks are bad, because big dicks are what manly men put to the wimminz. Amirite? Amirite?

    *crickets* – A Masked Avenger

    You’re the only one who mentioned dicks. I don’t know what raven intended, but she could just as easily be referring to feelings of powerlessness or failure with respect to career, education, politics, or any other aspect of life.

  17. dingojack says

    Raven didn’t say that, and neither did I. Masked Avenger inferred that was the ‘inadequacies’ I was referring to (which makes one wonder)
    :) Dingo

  18. A Masked Avenger says

    Firearms as penile extensions are as old a trope as homophobes-as-closeted-homosexuals. “Compensating for something” is a figure of speech almost invariably referencing penis size, and depending on context, “inadequacy” is a euphemism for having a small penis. If Dingo wasn’t intending to imply that gun owners have small penises, then he had the misfortune to express himself in terms that have no other interpretation remotely as likely.

    In #17 he suggests failure or powerlessness. I don’t think that’s much better: mind reading and armchair psychology do not help our case.

  19. howardhershey says

    Why it is perfectly obvious. The good guy with a gun is white with a sunburned neck and has a confederate flag sewn on his jacket. The bad guy with a gun has naturally darker skin.

  20. dingojack says

    What, as opposed to your armchair psychology and mind reading* which is absolutely acceptable, right?
    @@ Dingo
    —————-
    * And by the way, how dare you tell me what I said, or meant to say.

  21. Trebuchet says

    Why it is perfectly obvious. The good guy with a gun is white with a sunburned neck and has a confederate flag sewn on his jacket. The bad guy with a gun has naturally darker skin.

    I’m astounded that 21 comments went by before someone pointed this out. The convenience store incident with the two “open carry” nuts the other day would have ended very badly had the first guy had dark skin.

  22. atheist says

    @Childermass – July 5, 2014 at 10:51 am (UTC -4)

    … what Target is undoubtedly worried about is some idiot redneck getting people killed or injured by trying to stop an armed robbery with a gun.

    There’s also the distinct possibility that someone might simply tote their gun into the center of the store and just open fire on everyone.

  23. grumpyoldfart says

    How long before a gun nut is refused entry and decides to shoot his way in? Before the end of the year is my guess.

  24. says

    …when a loaded gun was found in a store’s toy aisle last month.

    They’re always losing things. I tie a string between two of them and run it up through the sleeves of the jacket, to prevent my kid from forgetting his guns somewhere.

     
    D. C. Sessions “It’s only a matter of time before we get a critical mass of open-carry heroes. And then all it will take is a loud noise.”
    Law & Order
    already covered this. It’s the episode where they use the term “fear pee” eleven times.

     
    A Masked Avenger “Firearms as penile extensions are as old a trope as homophobes-as-closeted-homosexuals. “Compensating for something” is a figure of speech almost invariably referencing penis size, and depending on context, “inadequacy” is a euphemism for having a small penis”
    But it’s true. Why do you think I’ve got so many of them?!

     
    howardhershey “The bad guy with a gun has naturally darker skin.”
    And also he doesn’t have a gun.

  25. regexp says

    There’s also the distinct possibility that someone might simply tote their gun into the center of the store and just open fire on everyone.

    and

    How long before a gun nut is refused entry and decides to shoot his way in? Before the end of the year is my guess.

    I would take that bet. Even with the latest gun incidents over the last few years – mass gun killings involving a self described gun nut walking into a retail outlet is non-existant. If you were really serious about guns (which both you clearly aren’t) lets have a serious discussion about suicide, mental illness and our idiotic drug laws.

  26. A Masked Avenger says

    Dingojack, #23:

    What, as opposed to your armchair psychology and mind reading* which is absolutely acceptable, right?
    @@ Dingo
    —————-
    * And by the way, how dare you tell me what I said, or meant to say.

    Well aren’t you precious. Now reading English in it’s usual and idiomatic meaning is “mind reading.” How dare I “read your mind” by reading your words and assuming they mean exactly what they say?

    But you’re so right: it’s clear that cracks about penis size are the farthest thing from your mind. Why, as recently as #18 you made that abundantly clear when you said:

    Raven didn’t say that, and neither did I. Masked Avenger inferred that was the ‘inadequacies’ I was referring to (which makes one wonder)
    :) Dingo

    Yes, one wonders why I read your comments the way I did–obviously it has something to do with being under-endowed in that department, amirite? Grin!

    The first law of holes would seem apropos about here.

  27. sabrekgb says

    Ed, with respect, you’re wrong on this post.

    Target, as a private company, has the right to set store policies on guns, of course. This is very similar to what happened with Starbucks (which also does not have a ban, simply asks customers to not bring their weapons). For all practical purposes, this is not a ban, it is a PR move to be seen to be as unoffensive as possible to both sides. The anti-carry side can point to the policy and interpret it as a ban, while the pro-carry side can technically still go right along carrying without violating the policy. An actual ban would be a poor idea on Target’s part as it would likely yield boycotts. I, for example, even when not carrying, tend to not spend my money at businesses that post “No weapons” signs, just as a matter principle. I also still carry into Starbucks and Chipotle, and no one has told me to leave (which i would, of course).

    You say no open-carriers ever take their weapons into a bank, but that’s not true. I carry openly in a bank every week. While i am out and about doing my errands and such, i have no compunction about depositing a check or withdrawing money as i am normally outfitted. My weapon is plainly visible, and properly holstered. If there is any alarm among any at the bank, they’ve never mentioned it to me, and no policy change has been instituted by the chain in the several years i’ve banked there. Granted, they may know me at my preferred location, but i do go to other local branches as well and have never had a problem.

    Someone who is going to rob a bank is not going to walk in with a properly holstered or slung weapon; they will either have their weapon at the ready or concealed. In either case, the “no guns” policy does nothing but inconvenience lawful carriers, since those who are going to rob the place aren’t going to care about a “No Weapons” policy anyway. I’m pretty sure there is a company policy against robbing them too…

    You say open-carriers aren’t reasonable. I disagree, and put myself up as an example. You’ll notice that most of these long-gun incidents that keep getting reported are protests of a lack of pistol open carry legality. Most people who carry regularly would much rather have a handgun than a long gun. That said, the simple presence of a weapon, be it a long gun or a pistol, when properly secured, is not a threat. If that person starts doing dumbass “Hold my beer…” shit, then by all means arrest them for that, but if people don’t panic when seeing an openly carries weapon on a police officer or federal agent, then they shouldn’t have the same reaction just because that person doesn’t carry a badge.

    I wouldn’t take a long gun with me to dinner at a restaurant, but that’s a matter of convenience, not principle. I’ve been to dinners at a chow hall where 300 men and women brought rifles with them…no one shot each other. I do, however, often bring a sidearm…is that prima facie evidence that i shouldn’t have a gun as well? If so, what is the difference in principle between the pistol and long gun? What if, in that political sub-division, the open carry of a pistol is not lawful and so only a long-gun is legal? Does it change anything if this is political protest?

    Overall, Ed, in this post i think you paint with too broad a brush. All open carriers are not like that douche-nozzle kid you profiled earlier.

  28. A Masked Avenger says

    regexp, #28:

    If you were really serious about guns (which both you clearly aren’t) lets have a serious discussion…

    Hey, that sounds great! We should have one of those. And I agree that bargain-basement redneck baiting is not really useful here. So, super! Where did you want to start?

    … about suicide, mental illness and our idiotic drug laws.

    Oh, sorry. I guess you’re not serious either. Suicide and drug laws are worthwhile topics, although it’s debatable whether they’re the top priority in addressing violence in general. But mental illness? Because killers are by definition crazy[*], and if we lock up the crazies[*] then we’ll automatically get the killers off the streets? Do not pass Go, do not collect $200.

    [*] The slur is part of the trope that regexp decided to lob at us; it is not my own, nor a direct quote of regexp.

  29. sabrekgb says

    @25 atheist

    “There’s also the distinct possibility that someone might simply tote their gun into the center of the store and just open fire on everyone.”

    Is that a very likely possibility? In any case, this policy changes the likelihood of that exactly how?

    You are aware, i would hope, that policy doesn’t actually physically prevent anyone from bringing a weapon into the store anyway and doing what you suggest. It does make it more likely that there will be no one else on the premises who is armed, though. I don’t recall ever seeing armed guards at my local Target…which leaves the first armed responders to be: Police. When seconds count, they are just minutes away. And then will stand outside for a while…

    @18 Dingjack

    “Raven didn’t say that, and neither did I. Masked Avenger inferred that was the ‘inadequacies’ I was referring to (which makes one wonder)”

    Come on, let’s not be disingenuous, we all know it’s referring to penises (among other things). It can be confidence, fear, whatever…but there’s always the little wink of “and penis”.

    @26 grumpyoldfart

    “How long before a gun nut is refused entry and decides to shoot his way in? Before the end of the year is my guess.”

    I’ll put a hundred bucks on that! Who want’s to be the escrow?

    Why would you think this is a likely outcome? Has this ever happened with other stores that changed their policies? Worst thing that will happen is that someone calls for a boycott, or a number of pro-carry people stop giving Target their business.

    Also, as an aside, i think whoever’s gun it was that was left in the toy aisle should be prosecuted for negligence or some such. Part of carrying in public is maintaining control of your weapon, and exercising freedoms also means exercising responsibility.

  30. says

    I liked Jimmy Kimmel’s takedown of the boneheadedness of Starbuck’s on the issue:

    http://www.bing.com/videos/search?q=Jimmy+Kimmel+guns+at+starbucks&FORM=VIRE3#view=detail&mid=F286CC3770B5B28DEC29F286CC3770B5B28DEC29

    I wonder what the big retailers who sell guns have to say about whether they want their clientele coming in strapped?

    “Ha Ha! Gun owners have little dicks! And little dicks are bad, because big dicks are what manly men put to the wimminz. Amirite? Amirite?”

    Gun owners? No. Gunzloonz? small dick, small brain, low self esteem or some combination of the three? Quite likely.

  31. A Masked Avenger says

    atheist, #25:

    There’s also the distinct possibility that someone might simply tote their gun into the center of the store and just open fire on everyone.

    Without defending douche canoes who carry slung long arms into the Winn Dixie, I must comment that this is near the bottom of my list of concerns. A bad actor with a handgun will conceal it until he’s ready to do something bad, and a bad actor with a long gun will get to work immediately. If you see someone with a long gun and a shopping cart, the probability that he’s about to commit a crime have just dropped to negligible levels.

    My first concern is that this person has already demonstrated impaired judgment, and therefore I have good reason to doubt that they will engage in safe handling. Will they muzzle people? Will they have a negligent discharge? Will it hit someone or ricochet? Do they actually know how to properly handle a slung long gun?

    As a point of comparison, I’m in law enforcement, qualified to carry a handgun, trained and tested every year, and I also shoot long guns at the range–but I have no idea how to perform daily activities with a slung weapon, because I’ve never needed to know that. I doubt that many do, who aren’t military veterans. I would not trust myself to carry s slung rifle around a store, and I’m certified to be responsible and well-trained about firearms in general.

    (If for some unearthly reason I felt motivated to make a symbolic point by carrying a long arm, I would carry it empty. Although this clashes with another little rule of mine, which is to be armed if I’m openly handling firearms–simply because I don’t want some jackwagon pulling a weapon on me and helping himself to a firearm. But that’s a whole ‘nother subject. Bottom line is that if I’m armed at all, I conceal it.)

  32. raven says

    I’ve been to dinners at a chow hall where 300 men and women brought rifles with them…no one shot each other.

    Congratualations on your good luck. And that is all it is.

    Guys on military bases do occasionally run amock and shoot whoever they can. Below is a partial list. There was another one at Fort Hood not too long ago as well.

    PS: I frequently go out for lunch where no one has ever openly carried a firearm. I too have never seen anyone shoot anyone else.

    USAToday:

    Fort Hood

    Location: Fort Hood, Texas

    Date: Nov. 5, 2009

    Shooter: Nidal Hasan

    Details: Hasan, an Army psychiatrist, went on a shooting rampage that killed 13 people and left many more wounded. He was convicted in 2013 of 13 counts of premeditated murder and 32 counts of attempted premeditated murder.

    Fort Bragg

    Location: Fort Bragg, N.C.

    Date: Oct. 27, 1995

    Shooter: William J. Kreutzer Jr.

    Details: Kreutzer, an Army paratrooper, was convicted of killing an officer and wounding 18 other soldiers in a shooting spree as troops from the 82nd Airborne Division participated in morning exercises. He was sentenced to death in 1996, but that sentence was overturned on appeal. He was later sentenced to life imprisonment.

    Fairchild Air Force Base

    Location: Spokane, Wash.

    Date: June 20, 1994

    Shooter: Dean Mellberg

    Details: Mellberg killed four people in a shooting that also left 23 wounded at a base hospital. He was killed by a security officer.

  33. says

    @ sabrekgb 30: “I also still carry into Starbucks and Chipotle, and no one has told me to leave (which i would, of course).”

    If I were a Starbucks manager and saw you in my store with a gun, I wouldn’t ask you to leave. I don’t know you, and have no idea how rational you fancy yourself to be, let alone how rational you are. A very high-stakes guessing game.

    An armed society is a society tiptoeing around sentient landmines.

  34. D. C. Sessions says

    I disagree, and put myself up as an example. You’ll notice that most of these long-gun incidents that keep getting reported are protests of a lack of pistol open carry legality.

    What color is the sky in your Texas (or Florida, or Arizona, or …) ?

  35. sabrekgb says

    @35 raven

    The issue of weapons on military bases involves a different set of facts and circumstances than the more general question of being armed in public. We can talk about it if you like. Contrary to some misconceptions on the matter, military bases (not in deployed locations) are damn-near “gun-free zones”. The only people armed on a regular basis are Security Forces. Mass shootings on bases, therefore, have much more in common with mass shootings in other “gun-free zones” than they would with a mass shooting in a location where people could actually exercise their rights of self-defense. In any case, i’m familiar with those instances you cited…and i wish other members of the respective units had been armed those days.

    @36 georgewiman

    You seem to have more fear than is warranted in that situation. I’m glad you wouldn’t ask me to leave, but your motivation in that case is entirely wrong. If i’ve done nothing aggressive (and, no, being armed does not count) or otherwise demonstrated irrationality, why would you not assume that i am of standard starbucks-customer rationality? Also, you’re butchering that Heinlein quote… *sigh*

  36. sabrekgb says

    @37 D.C. Sessions

    Texas is exactly the place i’m thinking of when i say that. The sky is blue most of the time, though it can be grey or pink during storms…also, out west, it’s often brown when mud falls from the sky.

    At least in TX, most of the reported incidents (and the primary reason there has been a spike in open-carry of long guns) are as protest to the open carrying of pistols being illegal. I’d be willing to bet that those incidents subside after a reasonable repeal of the prohibition on the open-carrying of pistols goes through the TX legislature.

  37. abear says

    raven wrote:

    Details: Hasan, an Army psychiatrist, went on a shooting rampage that killed 13 people and left many more wounded. He was convicted in 2013 of 13 counts of premeditated murder and 32 counts of attempted premeditated murder.

    A PSYCHIATRIST! There’s your problem right there- the Scientologists were right all along.

  38. Nick Gotts says

    How dare I “read your mind” by reading your words and assuming they mean exactly what they say? – A Masked Avernger@29

    But they didn’t say exactly what you are claiming they mean., and it’s plain diushonest to claim that they did.

    The first law of holes would seem apropos about here.

    Quite. I suggest you drop the shovel.

  39. Al Dente says

    I’d like one of the gunnutz like sabrekgb or A Masked Avenger (who must have a microscopic dick since he worries so much about people talking about gunnutz’s small penises) to explain why they have to carry their fucking bang-bangs around in public?

  40. sabrekgb says

    @42 Al Dente

    “I’d like one of the gunnutz like sabrekgb…to explain why they have to carry their fucking bang-bangs around in public?”

    Seeing as how “education” is one of the reasons i open carry in the first place, i’ll bite. And, if you’ll try and do me the favor of not joining democommie in his incessant use of the letter “Z” when referring to guns.

    There are probably two questions in what you’re asking, why do i carry at all, and why do i carry openly? If that’s not the case, forgive me, but i’ll try and answer both.

    I carry at all for the same reason i carry a multi-tool, a contingency kit in my vehicle (jumper cables, fix-a-flat, etc…), and other items i would need in a non-standard situation: because i might need it. Most times when i go out, i don’t get a flat tire, but it’s nice to have the tools for the situation in case it happens. I lose a bit of efficiency by carrying that weight all the time, but i think it makes up for it on the occasions i need it. I could just call AAA or a tow company, but what if i am in the country where i have no cell service or what if i come across someone else that needs help? I prefer the independence of having the tools available to me at need, not waiting for someone to come help me (though help is nice too). Such reasoning applies just as well to weapons, though the situation is not a mechanical failure, but a behavioral/societal one.

    Why do i carry openly? Several reasons:
    1) For educational purposes. Many people in my area are unaware of the laws regarding the carrying of weapons in general and open carry in particular. I get questions and comments from time to time and use it as an opportunity to inform them, answer questions they may have in general or of me personally, and generally try to have a positive interaction in general. This leads to my second reason…
    2) Normalization. The more someone who is courteous, informed, and law-abiding can be seen to be carrying a weapon openly, the less people will think of it. I think the proper and peaceable carry of weapons as part of everyday public life is not a bad thing, and want to do my small part to reassure the people i come into contact with that just because someone is armed (and sans a badge) does not mean they are a threat to them or a bad person. The more you know, the less fear will be involved, and the better public policy outcomes we will have in general. “Fear is the mind killer”, to rip off an author.
    3) As an exercise of my right to do so. Rights that are not used will frequently wither away and die. I do not wish to have this right restricted, and so i feel that exercising it in a responsible and respectful manner is helpful.
    4) Carrying openly is much easier, more comfortable, and accessible. I do not need to plan my clothing around the need to conceal a weapon, i don’t have to worry about sweeping clothing out of the way as much if i need to draw, and other such practical concerns.

    Additionally, i have heard an opinion expressed that i somewhat agree with: “An honest man doesn’t need to make a secret of being armed.” I don’t think it’s wrong to conceal, and i do so when necessary, but i do like the “honesty” of openly carrying, if that makes sense?

    Hopefully that answers some of your question.

  41. lorn says

    The US military has long realized that having weapons around at the same time as ammunition means there will, inevitably, be some casualties. Yes, they know that most service members are relatively competent and likely to be able to handle a loaded gun. But they also know that there are a lot of 18 year old, and 40 year old, kids who will run amok if bored and not closely supervised.

    Look closely at the pictures of sentries guarding a missile site in Saudi Arabia before the first gulf war. No magazines in their weapons. They weren’t even issues ammunition. For a good time the only people with ammunition were the MPs. There was ammunition around but it was well secured to keep it away from bored hands.

    Leaving the range stateside with our weapons a sergeant checks that the weapon is clear at at the door to the bus. With all magazines and rounds accounted for a pat-down was considered unnecessary.

    The simple fact is that where there are loaded weapons there will be accidental discharges. More training, supervision, and keeping people busy helps lower the rate but it never goes to zero.

    Of course, nobody ever admits to it, and it never happens to anyone we know. After a friend claims that he has a perfect safety record with his guns his wife chimes in with ‘except for that Thanksgiving with my mother’. The subject is quickly changed.

    Seems there was that one time when everyone was drinking, and his brother heard he had guns, and demanded he be able to see them, and slipped a cartridge into one, just to see if it would fit, and cocked it, and then got run off for saying something stupid, and then the guns owner, unaware it was loaded and cocked picked up three or four guns at once intending to quickly stuff them back into his gun safe, and somehow, the trigger got pulled and a bullet went through the floor.

    What with the alcohol flowing he should have kept he gun safe locked, but he could never saw no to his brother and get away with it. He could have observed his brother more closely, but with family popping in and out and all the noise it was difficult, He should have cleared each gun and put it back individually, but the BBQ needed tending so he was rushed.

    Everyone is Mister Gun Safety, until that one day when they are not.

  42. yak2 says

    OK, Sabre, what was left unsaid was exactly what eventuality you carry for? Tell me the chance of that is greater than the chance of accident or misuse, or that the chilling of dissent and subjugation of browns and women has no part in the equation.

    As for your stated reasons:
    1) I am educated enough to realize that civil discourse doesn’t require firearms. I would prefer the police not carry them either but they share your neurosis
    2) We don’t want it to be normal as carrying weapons has no place in a civil society
    3) There is no evidence that the right to guns has ever been threatened in this country. Plenty of constitutional rights are being trampled as we speak; do you campaign for the 4th and 5th amendments as vociferously?
    4) wow, uncomfortable clothing. Perhaps you can avoid that disaster by not carrying?

  43. A Masked Avenger says

    Nick, #41:

    But they didn’t say exactly what you are claiming they mean., and it’s plain diushonest to claim that they did.

    His meaning was clear to anyone who speaks Englush, including you. If it weren’t, comment #18 would have removed all doubt. It’s far from clear what purpose it serves you to pretend otherwise.

    Al Dente, #42:

    I’d like one of the gunnutz like sabrekgb or A Masked Avenger (who must have a microscopic dick since he worries so much about people talking about gunnutz’s small penises) to explain why they have to carry their fucking bang-bangs around in public?

    I work in law enforcement, fuckwit. Learn to read, and then reread my post. Then, take your gendered slurs and kindly fuck off.

  44. sabrekgb says

    @45 yak2

    The eventuality would be a situation where having a weapon is needed. While i can’t think of every case, some that come to mind are: being attacked or robbed myself, coming across someone else being attacked or robbed , finding myself in a situation where someone is firing indiscriminately on others, being attacked by a dog or wild animal. These are general categories, of course, and lack details. As well, deadly force would not be my first course of action in most instances, but in a situation where it is necessary, it is available. I would much rather have a tool and not need it than need it and not have it.

    “I am educated enough to realize that civil discourse doesn’t require firearms.”
    Of course it doesn’t, and i never said it does. Open carrying of firearms, however, does make for a great conversation starter/teaching point/question maker/etc. Kinda like civil discourse can occur without signs or T-shirts, but having one of those may instigate a discussion that otherwise would not have happened.

    “We don’t want it to be normal as carrying weapons has no place in a civil society”
    We disagree on this.

    “There is no evidence that the right to guns has ever been threatened in this country. Plenty of constitutional rights are being trampled as we speak; do you campaign for the 4th and 5th amendments as vociferously?”
    Yes, i do. My voice sounds louder on these threads because fewer people agree. And, you may have misunderstood, when i was talking about a right withering away, it was specifically about open-carry, not gun possession in general. There have been attempts to restrict the right to carry in public in general, as well…”gun free zones” come to mind quite readily.

    “wow, uncomfortable clothing. Perhaps you can avoid that disaster by not carrying?”
    I was asked about carrying openly, and this is a legitimate reason for doing so where legal. I would prefer to both carry and wear my clothing comfortably, given the choice :) Your attempt to minimize is noted, though, and i realize that reason would have little bearing for you since it seems you would prefer i was unarmed in general anyway. Still, it’s a legit reason for open vs concealed.

  45. Trickster Goddess says

    sabrekgb, you have my sympathies. I cannot imagine how difficult it must be to live your life in a constant state of fear and paranoia that you feel you must always carry an easily accessible loaded weapon with you everywhere you go and be prepared to instantly kill anyone who you think may be trying to harm you.

    “Fear is the mindkiller” indeed.

  46. sabrekgb says

    @44 lorn

    The simple fact is that where there are loaded weapons there will be accidental discharges. More training, supervision, and keeping people busy helps lower the rate but it never goes to zero.

    Everyone is Mister Gun Safety, until that one day when they are not.

    True statement. Thanks for the story, it’s a good reminder for everyone.

  47. says

    Penis, penis, penis.

    So yes, let’s not be disingenuous while putting your idioms on other people. We all know that penis-size references are really about personal feelings of fear and powerlessness, since the trope about penises is that they are symbols of power.

    Why the fuck do you carry a gun? Because you feel that you have inadequate power otherwise. Provide any other reason for carrying a weapon. Go right the fuck ahead.

  48. D. C. Sessions says

    pen carrying of firearms, however, does make for a great conversation starter/teaching point/question maker/etc.

    It’s also very, very good for ending them before they begin. Or sometimes just ending them.

    As for contingencies: I presume you also carry an AED in your “just in case” collection, because the odds are dramatically greater that you’ll find an occasion to use one than you will to use a pistol for anything other than entertainment. And the AED is less expensive, not to mention less prone to adverse outcomes.

  49. D. C. Sessions says

    Why the fuck do you carry a gun? Because you feel that you have inadequate power otherwise. Provide any other reason for carrying a weapon.

    Tribal identification.

  50. sabrekgb says

    @48 Trickster Goddess

    You misunderstand (perhaps willfully, but perhaps not). I do not live in a constant state of fear and paranoia, in fact i often counsel my friends and acquaintances to reduce the amount of fear in their own thinking.

    I carry a tool in case of need, and i am aware of the dangers that exist, without being paranoid or allowing fear to control my decision making. I am not living in fear and paranoia that i may have a flat tire, despite having a kit for such an eventuality in my vehicle. Being ready for a contingency does not mean one is paranoid or living in fear of it :)

    Out of curiosity, which of the two would you say is living in more fear: Person A, who will not walk through a certain part of town at night, because of fear of being mugged or raped; or Person B, who will be alert to the dangers of wherever she goes and carries a weapon, but will not allow fear to dictate where she can and cannot walk if she has a reason to go somewhere?

  51. sabrekgb says

    @50 F

    Why the fuck do you carry a gun? Because you feel that you have inadequate power otherwise. Provide any other reason for carrying a weapon.

    It sort of depends on what you mean by that. If someone else is armed and i am not, or they are bigger/stronger than i am and mean me harm…then, yes, I have inadequate power in that situation. A small woman has inadequate power when confronted with a 6′ man who intends to rape her. A black man being attacked by three skinheads has inadequate power in that situation.

    Is there something wrong with a person if they are in a situation in which they have inadequate power? I think not. Seems like a simple analysis.

    If it’s me in those situations, i prefer to not have inadequate power, if i can.

  52. yak2 says

    So many people are afraid to walk down the wrong aisle at Target at night.
    Do you carry a cardiac needle full of epi in case oh heart attack? It’s way more likely than your hypotheticals

  53. sabrekgb says

    @51 D.C. Sessions

    As for contingencies: I presume you also carry an AED in your “just in case” collection

    An AED, No. A med-kit, Yes.

  54. sabrekgb says

    @55 yak2

    Not a cardiac needle full, but oddly enough I do have an epi-pen in my med-kit :)

  55. zmidponk says

    @sabrekgb, so you carry so that you can shoot someone you think, rightly or wrongly, is a threat. Leaving aside the potential consequences of you simply being wrong, you want to know what that makes you to any potential attacker? The person they’re likely to kill first.

    As for open carry making a ‘conversation starter’, erm, no, not really. You want to know what my reaction would be on seeing some random person walking down the street with a gun strapped to them? Carefully keeping them in view until such time as I could get something very solid between them and me. You know, like a fairly substantial building. However, I would also take care not to actually stare, as that could be dangerous. Why is this? Simple – the difference to the naked eye to someone exercising ‘open carry’ and someone having a gun for more disturbing reasons, such as taking a gun with them to the chosen place of their shooting spree is…well, nothing, actually. All I can tell is that there is someone walking along the street in possession of a device specifically designed to injure or kill.

    Oh, and if you genuinely think carrying weapons does have a place in a civil society, you have a very different definition of the word ‘civil’ than I do. Perhaps ‘fearful’ is the word you’re looking for instead.

  56. sabrekgb says

    @58 zmidponk

    I’m aware that my open carry makes me a potential target in the event of certain situations (such as the recent unpleasantness in nevada), i also balance this against the fact that it has a dissuading effect against certain crimes as well. I make the conscious decision to carry open over concealed, knowing these things.

    Your fear illustrates my point well…you might “run away” initially, but eventually, if you see it enough and people are just going about their business, that fear you have will start to melt away. Eventually, though you may never carry yourself or like others to, you will stop having that reaction.

    People on their way to a shooting rampage aren’t usually carrying holstered/slung. They usually don’t have shopping carts, or bags, or children walking with them. If they are doing nothing aggressive, simply having a weapon is not an indication of an impending shooting spree. The fact that you think it is, is more a problem with your thinking, than with the person with the weapon. It’s for people like you that I stand ready to educate :)

    You don’t run when the police walk around near you with weapons…couldn’t they be on their way to a shooting spree? For that matter, how hard is it to fake a uniform? If your first thought when seeing an armed person who is not acting aggressively is “Gun + No Badge = OMG!” I would submit that it is not me who is being more fearful.

  57. zenlike says

    As an European, reading the comments of sabrekgb is like reading the comments made by a member of some Alien species. I cannot even get into vaguely the same mindset to even start trying to comprehend the psychology behind these idea’s.

    It is this mindset, which is certainly not shared by a majority of Americans, but sure seems to heave a fairly large niche following in the USA, which makes me very hesitant to visit, even though I truly believe the USA is a beautiful country.

  58. sabrekgb says

    @61 zenlike

    Don’t hesitate to come visit. The majority of people here, even people like me, are relatively nice and welcoming. There are a lot of awesome things about the U.S. and it’s worth a visit. Yes, you might see people like me walking around with firearms, but not to worry! I’ll make you a deal: don’t try to hurt me and i won’t try to hurt you, sounds fair, no? Feel free to come up and strike up a conversation as well, I always like talking to those from other nations.

    I enjoyed my time in Europe and all the awesome things i saw and did. We’re not aliens, and neither are you…though we may have some differences of opinion :)

  59. D. C. Sessions says

    Out of curiosity, which of the two would you say is living in more fear: Person A, who will not walk through a certain part of town at night, because of fear of being mugged or raped; or Person B, who will be alert to the dangers of wherever she goes and carries a weapon, but will not allow fear to dictate where she can and cannot walk if she has a reason to go somewhere?

    There are certainly parts of town I’m reluctant to travel at night, and I’m unusually large and strong. Call it fear if you will; nothing wrong with fear — it’s a survival trait handed down to us from before our ancestors started breathing air.

    And if you’re fool enough to wander into those neighborhoods at night wearing a gun, your odds of being found dead in the morning are much greater than mine, because you’re walking around with an object in high demand — much more valuable than I’m likely to be carrying. Besides, you just challenged the top predators in that jungle. Count on it: you’d never see the shooter or hear the shot that killed you. Long before you could get your hand to that holster you’re so proud of.

    However, I fully grant that if you want to intimidate someone in a traffic confrontation you’re way ahead me.

  60. says

    Given that a person has walked into JC Penny in Riverdale Utah wtih a loaded pistol in a visible holster and an AR-15. It is obvious people don’t understand that just because it is legal, doesn’t mean you should do it. As I recall after this individual did this, many gun rights activist including the NRA specifically said “You’re not helping. Please don’t do that.”

    An open-carry law is really not a problem, what is the problem is the stigma associated with guns. If you live in communities where people often go shooting responsibly then guns tend not to bring this reaction. But in communities where guns are more shrouded in ignorance, yes ignorance. Where people associate the firearm with violence and have a knee jerk reaction to just seeing it, unless an officer has one. This is seen as barbaric or promoting violence. I don’t see how a gun arbitrarily promotes violence. People committing violence promotes violence whether it is a knife, gun, baseball bat, or any other weapon. Given that everyone will at some point in their life encounter a gun whether it is at a friends house or someone using it for violence, it would seem to me the best thing we could do is educate people about firearms both how to handle them safely and not to panic when they see it.

    I do think businesses should have the right to refuse customers who by their actions legal or not are turning away business.

  61. zmidponk says

    sabrekgb #59:

    I’m aware that my open carry makes me a potential target in the event of certain situations (such as the recent unpleasantness in nevada), i also balance this against the fact that it has a dissuading effect against certain crimes as well. I make the conscious decision to carry open over concealed, knowing these things.

    Except the dissuading effect is rather limited if guns are as ubiquitous as you seemingly would like them to be. After all, if chances are that the attacker is going to be armed, and, as your utopia seems to be, so is everyone else, as soon as the first shot is fired, even if it’s not just you and him in that particular area, you are left with several people who now have guns in their hand. Who fired first? Who’s the actual criminal? He’s now just one amongst many who are holding guns.

    Your fear illustrates my point well…you might “run away” initially, but eventually, if you see it enough and people are just going about their business, that fear you have will start to melt away. Eventually, though you may never carry yourself or like others to, you will stop having that reaction.

    No, because, if guns become that commonplace, it will just be replaced by the fear that, if anything does go down, I may very well be caught in the crossfire, even if no-one specifically shoots at me.

    People on their way to a shooting rampage aren’t usually carrying holstered/slung. They usually don’t have shopping carts, or bags, or children walking with them. If they are doing nothing aggressive, simply having a weapon is not an indication of an impending shooting spree. The fact that you think it is, is more a problem with your thinking, than with the person with the weapon. It’s for people like you that I stand ready to educate :)

    People going on shooting sprees don’t generally do anything particularly aggressive – until, of course, they do. It’s not uncommon the first clue that they were going to shoot was when they opened fire. And you missed that this was only one possible example. What if one particular person was the kind of person who might pull a gun because he thought I had looked at him disrespectfully?

    You don’t run when the police walk around near you with weapons…couldn’t they be on their way to a shooting spree?

    Well, for a start, I know that the police have had a modicum of training with their weapons. I don’t know that of a random person. Secondly, no, I don’t run when police are around me with weapons – but that’s mainly because I know that could very well make me suspicious to the police officer(s) in question. That doesn’t mean I’m actually comfortable, though.

    For that matter, how hard is it to fake a uniform?

    In some states, harder than it is to simply get a gun.

    If your first thought when seeing an armed person who is not acting aggressively is “Gun + No Badge = OMG!” I would submit that it is not me who is being more fearful.

    Well, from where I’m sitting, I only go ‘OMG’, and be very careful around them. You go ‘OMG, I need to get and carry a deadly weapon just in case a situation arises where I need to protect myself from other people who might or might not also have similar deadly weapons’.

  62. says

    @sabrekgb 38
    “You seem to have more fear than is warranted in that situation. I’m glad you wouldn’t ask me to leave, but your motivation in that case is entirely wrong. If i’ve done nothing aggressive (and, no, being armed does not count) or otherwise demonstrated irrationality, why would you not assume that i am of standard starbucks-customer rationality? Also, you’re butchering that Heinlein quote… *sigh*”

    Thank you for telling me that bringing a deadly weapon into a coffee shop does not count, as if that was your call to make for someone else. As it happens the corporation did make a call with its policy. I am not making any assumptions about your rationality. Including, given the stakes, that you are rational. One does not challenge an armed man about anything. The word you are groping for is “caution”, not fear.

    If you want to test this theory, try challenging the next ten people you see littering. Take note of the percentage of people who politely pick up the litter, and the percentage who flip you the bird or worse. This is analogous to a store manager asking random armed people to leave the store. You are one of the litter-picker-uppers, or perhaps even a non-litterer? Good for you.

    I would have thought it would be obvious to anyone that I was making a comment on that famous Heinlein quote. But see? I was making an assumption about your social intelligence. You know what they say about assuming.

  63. D. C. Sessions says

    Your fear illustrates my point well…you might “run away” initially, but eventually, if you see it enough and people are just going about their business, that fear you have will start to melt away.

    If I’m in a place where everyone feels that they need to be more heavily armed on the street than the people of Dodge City when it was at the end of the cattle trails, I’m going to decide that I’d be stupid to hang around.

  64. Trickster Goddess says

    @53 sabrekgb

    I was only being slightly facetious in my comment. In all honesty, yes, I am unable to fathom why anyone in a civilized country would feel the need to have instant access to, and willingness to use a lethal weapon at every minute of the day, anywhere they go if it wasn’t for fear and/or paranoia.

    I can appreciate being prepared for possibilities, but is the threat of danger so likely where you live that it is worth lugging a heavy chunk of metal with you where ever you go?

    In over half a century of living, including 6 years driving a taxi on night shift in a big city, I have never found myself in a situation where it would have been useful to have a gun on me. Even when driving cab, I would not have wanted to take someone’s life (or threaten to) just to save myself from losing a few bucks. In real life, the vast majority of muggers are more interested in just getting the money than they are in killing their victim.

    As for a woman protecting herself from a rapist, a gun isn’t really that useful because
    1) most rapists are people who are already known to the victim, not boogie men lurking in bushes
    2) most jurisdictions only allow proportional self defense, and since the vast majority of rape victims are not killed, using deadly force against an attacker would most likely end up with the victim serving a jail sentence for manslaughter.

  65. D. C. Sessions says

    I am unable to fathom why anyone in a civilized country would feel the need to have instant access to, and willingness to use a lethal weapon at every minute of the day, anywhere they go if it wasn’t for fear and/or paranoia.

    in addition to tribal identification (gang sign), $HERSELF also pointed out territory marking.

  66. Jordan Genso says

    sabrekgb

    You want to know why many of us consider your position irrational? Because it relies on the idea that a stranger who you don’t see carrying a gun is more of a threat than a stranger who is carrying a gun. That’s absolutely irrational.

    Either strangers pose a threat, in which case it is reasonable for you to carry a gun, and it is reasonable for us to be afraid of strangers carrying a gun. Or strangers do not pose a reasonable threat, in which case it is unreasonable for you to carry a gun around. There is no logical option where strangers pose a threat unless they are armed.

  67. says

    “At least in TX, most of the reported incidents (and the primary reason there has been a spike in open-carry of long guns) are as protest to the open carrying of pistols being illegal. I’d be willing to bet that those incidents subside after a reasonable repeal of the prohibition on the open-carrying of pistols goes through the TX legislature.”

    Texas. one of the states that doesn’t count accidental homicides with gunz as felonies or even misdemeanors in far too many cases? That Texas?

    “I, for example, even when not carrying, tend to not spend my money at businesses that post “No weapons” signs, just as a matter principle. I also still carry into Starbucks and Chipotle, and no one has told me to leave (which i would, of course).”

    So, you don’t really WANT to go Starbucks or Chipotle but you will, just to fuck with the man?

    “I work in law enforcement, fuckwit.”

    Well, we know that you have a temper, so there;s that. Are you a cop? LE has a lot of jobs, the vast majority of which do not require employees to make snap decisions in life or death situations on a regular basis. I have no doubt that you are trained to do your job and if you’re carrying a weapon while working that can only be a good thing. Sabrekgb, btw, says that you LE types are not trained any better than he is in the use of deadly force and when it should be applied with a firearm.

    “A small woman has inadequate power when confronted with a 6′ man who intends to rape her.”

    You know this?

    “I enjoyed my time in Europe and all the awesome things i saw and did. We’re not aliens, and neither are you…though we may have some differences of opinion :)”

    And you managed to come home alive, even though it’s almost certain you weren’t carrying a weapon, legally, anywhere in Europe?

  68. sabrekgb says

    @63 D.C. Sessions

    And if you’re fool enough to wander into those neighborhoods at night wearing a gun, your odds of being found dead in the morning are much greater than mine, because you’re walking around with an object in high demand — much more valuable than I’m likely to be carrying. Besides, you just challenged the top predators in that jungle. Count on it: you’d never see the shooter or hear the shot that killed you. Long before you could get your hand to that holster you’re so proud of.

    I refuse to live my life based on fear. If i have cause to go into “the bad part of town”, then that is what i will be doing. I have a right to be there and will not let someone tell me i can’t through unlawful intimidation. A woman who goes out in scanty clothing is not asking to be raped. A person who goes where they are legally allowed to be is not asking to be mugged. If you are attacked in a bad place, it is not your fault, it is the fault of the attacker.

    I also disagree with your story of what would happen. That has not been my experience, carrying both openly and concealed. Situational awareness is the single greatest factor in ensuring best outcomes. Top predator indeed…let’s leave behind that 90s crime-fear dehumanizing language, shall we?

    However, I fully grant that if you want to intimidate someone in a traffic confrontation you’re way ahead me.

    Something i never mentioned or insinuated. Contrarily, i am actually calmer and less prone to anger in traffic situations when armed. I know that i am responsible for my own self control and it is more important when i have a weapon. I also have less to fear from someone who would get out and want to “beat my ass” in a traffic incident, so there is no reason to get mentally worked up. I can’t speak for others’ mind states, but that is my experience.

    @65 zmidponk

    Except the dissuading effect is rather limited if guns are as ubiquitous as you seemingly would like them to be.

    You’re confusing two different times. The dissuading effect exists now. Were guns to become ubiquitous, you may be right that it would reduce…though i tend to think those sorts of crimes would reduce more. This was in response to someone asking why i carry openly now.

    Who fired first? Who’s the actual criminal? He’s now just one amongst many who are holding guns.

    So…better to just let the criminals have guns and commit their crimes than to have some confusion after the fact and have the police have to work out the details?

    What if one particular person was the kind of person who might pull a gun because he thought I had looked at him disrespectfully?

    Then that person shouldn’t be carrying to begin with. With such an outlook, i imagine he would find his license revoked or himself imprisoned or dead in short order. Were he to shoot someone for “looking at him funny” that would be a tragedy and he should be punished for it, but the fear that someone might act badly is not a good justification to restrict everyone’s rights. We let people have free speech, despite the Westboro assholes “abusing” it, no?

    Well, for a start, I know that the police have had a modicum of training with their weapons.

    You think you know, but i’m not sure you actually do. The guy who scored the second worst in my small arms class was law enforcement… It’s rather like the bottom of the class in law school, you still call him Dr. In any case, that training does not preclude him from going on a rampage. And his uniform can and has been faked. Don’t get me wrong, i don’t think police should be unarmed, but i do strongly believe than not only the police should be armed. This was to point out a glaring fault that often crops up in discussions regarding weapons in public.

    Well, from where I’m sitting, I only go ‘OMG’, and be very careful around them. You go ‘OMG, I need to get and carry a deadly weapon just in case a situation arises where I need to protect myself from other people who might or might not also have similar deadly weapons’.

    The two are not mutually exclusive. And how is my position (which you mimed fairly accurately, really) unreasonable? Is equality not a good thing in general? I would prefer equality of force among those acting as equals. And i would prefer excess of force when interacting with those who would do me harm. None of this seems unreasonable… Would you actually prefer to face an attacker unarmed if you had the chance to be armed instead? What about having the ability to help someone in need when you see an assault happening? I don’t really get the desire for helplessness.

  69. says

    Just a change of a few words:

    “Out of curiosity, which of the two would you say is living in more fear: Person A, who will not walk through a certain part of town at night, because of fear of being mugged or raped; or Person B, who will be alert to the dangers of wherever she goes and carries a weapon, but will not allow fear to dictate where she can and cannot walk if she has a reason to go somewhere?”

    “Out of curiosity, which of the two would you say is thinking more rationally: Person A, who will not walk through a certain part of town at night, because it’s known to be a high crime, insufficiently policed area; or Person B, who will be alert to the dangers of wherever she goes and carries a weapon, but will not allow fear to dictate where she can and cannot walk if she has a reason to go somewhere?”

    Yeah., I’m gonna have to go with “A”.

    Maybe sabrkgb knows Ol Weer’d Beard from the Boston area. He told me he has to carry his 1911 when he walks his dog in Roxbury (IIRC) cuz it’s dangerous. I know that feeling, I walk my dog at night in an area that’s got some pretty nasty feral cats and a lot of skunks and other wild critters that like the fine table that civilization lays for them. But I keep the dog close and I scan constantly for skunks and the like. I’m usually in mid to high “yellow” threat mode when I’m out with him. So, yeah, I can see being careful with the pooch late at night. If I have to worry about the PEOPLE in the neighborhood, I’ll move.

  70. howardhershey says

    The only reason to carry guns everywhere you go is the fear that you do not live in a civilized country where people can shop unarmed and survive. In Texas, as in Mexico and Central America (where gun homicides are even higher than the U.S.), that fear is well-founded and justified.

  71. sabrekgb says

    @66 georgewiman

    One does not challenge an armed man about anything.

    Possession of a weapon does not make a person a foaming monster. If that man is pointing said weapon at you, then fin…smile and nod. If that man is not acting aggressively, then you’re being overly fearful and that is one of the reasons for greater familiarity with guns in general. I have been asked to not be armed in a restaurant before, and i promptly left. They lost my business, but it was a very civil interaction, despite disagreement. Even if it had been uncivil, the man ordering me out has nothing to fear from me unless he physically attacks me.

    If a police officer lit up a cigarette in your establishment where it is against policy, would you saw something, or would you cower and nod because he’s armed?

    How often do you think a park ranger (or even a park employee who is unarmed) confronts an armed hunter over violations of some rule or another? It’s a lot more than the number of times that hunter shoots said person…which is vanishingly rare (i can’t recall any instance offhand). Also, you use the word “challenge”, which is loaded (pun!). You could easily rephrase that as “Ask him to leave.” and leave off some emotional coloring.

    I would have thought it would be obvious to anyone that I was making a comment on that famous Heinlein quote.

    I know you were. And i was commenting on your comment. Metaphorical butchery.

  72. sabrekgb says

    @ 71 democommie

    Ah, democommie…

    So, you don’t really WANT to go Starbucks or Chipotle but you will, just to fuck with the man?

    I go to Starbucks most days of the week. Chipotle less often. I don’t go there to fuck with anyone, i go because i want to give them money and get coffee and burritos in return.

    Sabrekgb, btw, says that you LE types are not trained any better than he is in the use of deadly force and when it should be applied with a firearm.

    As in several other occasions, you’re miscategorizing (or not paying attention to) my position. I said that in the relevant areas, I am at least as well trained as the minimum required for LE: firearms proficiency, judgement, and knowledge of the relevant laws in my municipality.

    You know this?

    I’m gonna go out on a limb and say it’s a pretty good bet that a 5′ ~100lb girl is probably going to be overpowered by a 6′ ~200lb guy. I could be wrong and she could beat his ass hard, but i would feel safe putting my money on the big guy. Are you implying this is somehow mistaken?

    And you managed to come home alive, even though it’s almost certain you weren’t carrying a weapon, legally, anywhere in Europe?

    Indeed, i’m as surprised as you!

    If I have to worry about the PEOPLE in the neighborhood, I’ll move.

    That’s cool, but i prefer to resist thugs rather than changing my life to suit their illegal actions. I don’t fault you for your choice, but you shouldn’t take mine from me.

  73. sabrekgb says

    @68 Trickster Goddess

    I can appreciate being prepared for possibilities, but is the threat of danger so likely where you live that it is worth lugging a heavy chunk of metal with you where ever you go?

    I judge the risk/need ratio sufficient to warrant the pound of weight, yes, especially when coupled with the other reasons i mentioned.

    As for a woman protecting herself from a rapist, a gun isn’t really that useful because
    1) most rapists are people who are already known to the victim, not boogie men lurking in bushes
    2) most jurisdictions only allow proportional self defense, and since the vast majority of rape victims are not killed, using deadly force against an attacker would most likely end up with the victim serving a jail sentence for manslaughter.

    I’m familiar with the majority of rapes being committed by an assailant the victim knows, and my example was a general one used to illustrate the difference in power and how firearms can have an equalizing effect. The specific crime is not as important as the violent nature of it. As for the person being prosecuted for manslaughter, i find that highly unlikely. Do you have any examples of this? I would not hesitate to go to a jury trial in such a case, assuming prosecution was even prefered.

    @ 70 Jordan Genso

    I appreciate your argument and it gave me cause to think when i first heard it. My response is that it equates possession of a weapon with aggressive actions. The stranger carrying a gun aggressively should surely be cause for alarm. The stranger who you cannot see if armed acting aggressively should also be cause for alarm. The armed stranger who is not acting aggressively may be cause for attention, but not alarm until and unless his actions change.

    The argument is overly simplistic.

    it relies on the idea that a stranger who you don’t see carrying a gun is more of a threat than a stranger who is carrying a gun

    Relevant to this are the statistics on CCW holders in TX and their rates of crime commission of all kinds, including violent. They are significantly lower than the average population. Oddly enough, there is a negative correlation between those who are legally armed and their likelihood to be a criminal danger to you. So, turns out that somewhat counter-intuitive idea is actually the case: if you see someone with a gun (who is not acting aggressively), they are less likely to be a threat to you.

    Those who mean ill with their weapons will conceal them until they need them. The would not advertise the fact that they are armed if their intention is to take someone by surprise.

  74. D. C. Sessions says

    I refuse to live my life based on fear.

    And yet you carry around a med-kit. Does it contain PPE? Why would you do that unless you are living in fear?

    I have a right to be there and will not let someone tell me i can’t through unlawful intimidation.

    Sweet. Next time I want someone to take a run down an unstable slope to check for avalanche conditions, I’ll call you. Likewise when I’m working a freeway wreck adjacent to heavy traffic.

    Situational awareness is the single greatest factor in ensuring best outcomes.

    Because you have perfect 360-degree night vision that allows you to know that there’s someone around the corner ten meters ahead who’s been tipped that you’re on your way.

    One does not challenge an armed man about anything.

    Possession of a weapon does not make a person a foaming monster.

    No, but it does tell me two things:

    1) He’s walking around prepared to kill people and wants everyone to know it.
    2) If he is, as you put it, “a foaming monster” his chances of being a serious threat to me than if he weren’t packing.

    With the conclusion that, all things considered, the best thing to do is treat him like a skunk: probably harmless, but not worth the trouble of finding out. Given a choice between the company of people who smoke, don’t bathe, and have rotting teeth versus someone who feels the need to carry deadly weapons at the ready everywhere, it’s really no contest.

  75. Pen says

    zenlike @ 61 – As an European, reading the comments of sabrekgb is like reading the comments made by a member of some Alien species.

    I couldn’t agree more. I don’t usually have such visceral reactions but it’s disgusting and uncivilized to tote a deadly weapon around with you. And no, sabrekgb, I don’t want to get used to it. Quite the opposite. I don’t want to talk to you in person or be in the same space as you while you’ve got a weapon with you. It’s not possible to have honest relations or an honest conversation with an armed person. And I don’t buy your argument that you’re especially rational so you’re not a danger to others. Human beings in general are not so rational. Anyone who takes their gun shopping with them is automatically not behaving rationally. Apparently, you get to revel in your misguided law and I would not be in the least surprised if you get to be a social outcast for your pains.

  76. vmanis1 says

    Anton Chekhov is quoted with the dictum “If in the first act you have hung a pistol on the wall, then in the following one it should be fired. Otherwise don’t put it there.”

    If I were in Target, and saw a person (other than a peace officer) with a weapon, I would assume that (a) the weapon was loaded, and (b) that there were circumstances under which the person bearing it planned to use it. I would make no assumptions about either the intentions of the individual in question, or their competence in the use of such weapons. Prudence would therefore dictate my hasty departure. If many people did this, Target would find themselves losing money.

    Therefore, it does not matter whether the bearer of these weapons does or does not feel genitally adequate, or what form of `education’ he or she wishes to inflict upon me. The very fact that s/he is bearing a weapon is sufficient for me to feel the need to make tracks.

    Of course, I live in Canada, and we have substantial restrictions (which I support) on the possession or carrying of firearms.

  77. zmidponk says

    sabrekgb #72:

    I refuse to live my life based on fear. If i have cause to go into “the bad part of town”, then that is what i will be doing. I have a right to be there and will not let someone tell me i can’t through unlawful intimidation.

    Having a right to do something and it being wise to do that thing are two different things. There are many things you can legally do, but are also dangerous.

    A woman who goes out in scanty clothing is not asking to be raped. A person who goes where they are legally allowed to be is not asking to be mugged. If you are attacked in a bad place, it is not your fault, it is the fault of the attacker.

    I totally agree with this, but it has nothing to do with the point D. C. Sessions was making.

    I also disagree with your story of what would happen. That has not been my experience, carrying both openly and concealed. Situational awareness is the single greatest factor in ensuring best outcomes. Top predator indeed…let’s leave behind that 90s crime-fear dehumanizing language, shall we?

    …along with reality.

    Something i never mentioned or insinuated. Contrarily, i am actually calmer and less prone to anger in traffic situations when armed. I know that i am responsible for my own self control and it is more important when i have a weapon. I also have less to fear from someone who would get out and want to “beat my ass” in a traffic incident, so there is no reason to get mentally worked up. I can’t speak for others’ mind states, but that is my experience.

    And there is your problem. You think about your state of mind and what x, y, z means to you. You don’t seem to see that, to others, you’re simply some random guy with a deadly weapon strapped to him.

    You’re confusing two different times. The dissuading effect exists now. Were guns to become ubiquitous, you may be right that it would reduce…though i tend to think those sorts of crimes would reduce more. This was in response to someone asking why i carry openly now.

    So, does this mean that, because this dissuading effect would reduce, you’d stop carrying? Or, at least, carrying openly? Because, if not, then what you’ve said doesn’t make sense.

    So…better to just let the criminals have guns and commit their crimes than to have some confusion after the fact and have the police have to work out the details?

    I thought I didn’t need to state my point so explicitly, but obviously I was wrong. You say carrying a gun has a dissuading effect, presumably because criminals know that they will get shot by other citizens. Let’s say you hear a shot coming from behind you as somebody shoots someone else, so you whirl around whilst drawing your weapon, to see about a dozen folk all with guns in their hands. Who is the criminal? Who do you shoot? It doesn’t take someone of any ridiculously high intellect or cunning to know that confusion like this can be exploited to get away, so this dissuading effect is somewhat limited. It’s not about the police working out the details after the fact, it’s about the simple fact that your given reason for openly carrying a gun doesn’t work when everyone does it.

    Then that person shouldn’t be carrying to begin with. With such an outlook, i imagine he would find his license revoked or himself imprisoned or dead in short order.

    And I’m sure that will be great consolation to me as my body cools on the sidewalk. If only I’d developed psychic powers so that I could have told that he was like that before he shot me.

    Were he to shoot someone for “looking at him funny” that would be a tragedy and he should be punished for it, but the fear that someone might act badly is not a good justification to restrict everyone’s rights.

    When the consequences are that people get killed, it should certainly be considered – and there are many that would actually disagree with you and say that considering him not fit to own a gun is a violation of his rights, even after he has clearly shown himself to be prone to abusing that right.

    We let people have free speech, despite the Westboro assholes “abusing” it, no?

    Mainly because the consequences of their abuse don’t result in bodies cooling on the sidewalk.

    You think you know, but i’m not sure you actually do. The guy who scored the second worst in my small arms class was law enforcement… It’s rather like the bottom of the class in law school, you still call him Dr.

    Yes, this is why I said ‘a modicum of training’. Even if he shoots badly, I can be sure he at least knows that guns are dangerous, and any police force that doesn’t at least teach basic gun rules shouldn’t be operating, or only have officers armed with guns. A random guy off the street, for all I know, knows nothing beyond how to point a gun and pull the trigger.

    In any case, that training does not preclude him from going on a rampage. And his uniform can and has been faked.

    Which is why I’m not comfortable even around police with guns.

    Don’t get me wrong, i don’t think police should be unarmed, but i do strongly believe than not only the police should be armed. This was to point out a glaring fault that often crops up in discussions regarding weapons in public.

    I certainly think police should have guns in the US – but only because of how easy it is for citizens to get guns in most of the US, and criminals are simply citizens who commit crimes.

    The two are not mutually exclusive.

    Your question was ‘who is more fearful?’ The answer is, from what I can see, you. I only feel the need to avoid situations where I’m around people who openly display that they’ve got guns. You feel the need to arm yourself with a deadly weapon just in case you encounter someone who might do you harm, whether they obviously have a gun or not.

    And how is my position (which you mimed fairly accurately, really) unreasonable? Is equality not a good thing in general?

    With guns, yeah – everyone has none. That’s a very good equality.

    I would prefer equality of force among those acting as equals.

    I would prefer simply not using force at all. Amongst those acting as equals, I would prefer acting with each other for mutual benefit, or simply helping each other out because we recognise that we’re fellow humans.

    And i would prefer excess of force when interacting with those who would do me harm. None of this seems unreasonable… Would you actually prefer to face an attacker unarmed if you had the chance to be armed instead? What about having the ability to help someone in need when you see an assault happening? I don’t really get the desire for helplessness.

    Well, basically, because of the danger of escalation and getting into an arms race. Some people who might do you harm get knives, so you get a gun. Some people who might do you harm get submachine guns, so you get an assault rifle. Sooner or later, you find yourself in a situation where you don’t dare walk outside your own front door without full tactical gear and festooning yourself with weapons, just in case something goes down. I find that situation ludicrous and undesirable, so I don’t do it. I simply avoid situations where I might face an attacker, if possible, and, if I can’t, I use what tools I have to hand to deal with it.

  78. D. C. Sessions says

    That’s cool, but i prefer to resist thugs rather than changing my life to suit their illegal actions.

    Cool. You’re just the dude to explain the facts of life to the gangs in Juarez. Let us know how that turns out, would you?

  79. D. C. Sessions says

    Apparently, you get to revel in your misguided law and I would not be in the least surprised if you get to be a social outcast for your pains.

    Not among his particular gang. That’s the whole point.

  80. D. C. Sessions says

    Relevant to this are the statistics on CCW holders in TX and their rates of crime commission of all kinds, including violent. They are significantly lower than the average population. Oddly enough, there is a negative correlation between those who are legally armed and their likelihood to be a criminal danger to you. So, turns out that somewhat counter-intuitive idea is actually the case: if you see someone with a gun (who is not acting aggressively), they are less likely to be a threat to you.

    Big surprise. The crime stats are overwhelmingly dominated by simple possession of controlled substances, and those are dominated by brown people. Gun culture, on the other hand, is overwhelmingly composed of people lacking epidermal melanin. Who, especially in Texas, are less likely to be charged with a crime regardless of its nature.

    Walking around wearing the same gang sign that the cops wear does have its privileges.

  81. sabrekgb says

    @78 D.C. Sessions

    Does it contain PPE? Why would you do that unless you are living in fear?

    The phrase “living in fear” denotes a condition significantly different from “cautious of” or even “has a healthy fear of”. You know what was meant by the statement, and word games are not necessary.

    Next time I want someone to take a run down an unstable slope to check for avalanche conditions, I’ll call you. Likewise when I’m working a freeway wreck adjacent to heavy traffic.

    Hey, look, things that are not related! There’s a big difference between an avalanche and someone making the choice to rob you. That person is not a force of nature, they are a human being making decisions. Similarly with accidents, no one is trying to hit you on the freeway. We can have the discussion about not putting yourself in dangerous situations versus where the blame actually resides for something bad happening, but let’s not pretend that assaults and robberies and rapes are just things that happen naturally and are not the direct result of conscious beings choosing to do them.

    Do you blame a girl who goes out in skimpy clothing for getting raped? Let’s not be disingenuous here.

    Because you have perfect 360-degree night vision that allows you to know that there’s someone around the corner ten meters ahead who’s been tipped that you’re on your way.

    Relevant how? This is not the movies. I’m not batman. Douchebag mugger isn’t the joker. There is no conspiracy.

    He’s walking around prepared to kill people

    As are police, every day of the week. Being prepared to kill if the need arises is not a bad thing in and of itself. Never having to do so is the goal, and it is my fervent wish that I find that preparation never necessary. I would, however, much rather be prepared to do so and not have to…than have to, and not be prepared, with the price being my own life, a loved one’s, or even an innocent stranger i come across.

    @79 pen

    it’s disgusting and uncivilized to tote a deadly weapon around with you

    Feelings of disgust are rarely the best way to decide things. After all, how many people base their opposition to gays on that same exact word.

    I don’t want to talk to you in person or be in the same space as you while you’ve got a weapon with you.

    You are free to not talk to me and leave *shrug*

    It’s not possible to have honest relations or an honest conversation with an armed person.

    That you think so reveals more about negatives at work in your own mind than about me.

    Anyone who takes their gun shopping with them is automatically not behaving rationally.

    False, and unsupported.

    Apparently, you get to revel in your misguided law and I would not be in the least surprised if you get to be a social outcast for your pains.

    This has not been the case. In fact, I have had quite a few pleasant and honest conversations while carrying openly, and have been encouraged by a number of people (more than those who have had negative reactions) including several store clerks and employees where robberies have happened in the near past.

    You don’t like guns, they disgust you, got it. Don’t carry one. Learn, however, that others make different choices and have the ability to handle and use weapons without such visceral reactions. Your disgust is not a sufficient reason to curtail my rights. It doesn’t work for the religious right, and it shouldn’t work for you.

  82. says

    Pen “Anyone who takes their gun shopping with them is automatically not behaving rationally.”
    Yeah, sure. And then because you did not take your gun shopping, after you get home you have to get back in the car, drive back to the store, and stand in the returns line to exchange your gun cozy for one that fits.

     
    And also, this is America. This country was founded on doing things, not because you should, but because you can. We invented cooking a bird inside another bird inside another bird (and once that emu tires out, we’ll invent cooking a bird inside another bird inside another bird inside another bird) , and spent years and billions of dollars creating a chicken sandwich where the chicken is on the outside.
     
    People don’t come from all over the world to America because we make sense. They come here because we don’t. And damnit, if that doesn’t make you feel like saluting The Flag, barbequing far more than you can eat, and losing another finger to fireworks, maybe you’re not American enough for America.

  83. dhall says

    Modus, I think you won with the Batman costume comment. Summed up sabrekgb perfectly. As zenlike and pen and so many others have commented, it’s bizarre to think that normal people ought to walk around armed all the time. It’s not about constitutional rights, it sounds more like it’s about playing cowboy in old movies.

  84. says

    That said, the simple presence of a weapon, be it a long gun or a pistol, when properly secured, is not a threat.

    Especially when it’s left lying around the toy aisle…

  85. sabrekgb says

    @81 zmidponk

    Having a right to do something and it being wise to do that thing are two different things. There are many things you can legally do, but are also dangerous.

    Then i’ll just go ahead and make that decision for myself. No me gusta Paternalism.

    I totally agree with this, but it has nothing to do with the point D. C. Sessions was making.

    I disagree, It very much does. Saying to someone that they should accept not being able to go somewhere at night because it’s a bad part of town is giving control to those who would attack them. Telling a woman to not wear a bikini because she might get raped is giving control to those who would rape her. Now, in given situations, you might exercise some caution, but that doesn’t mean it is right that we cede control to those who wrongly intimidate through threat of criminal violence. We were talking about fear. People should be able to go where they wish or wear what they want without fear of being harmed for it…carrying a weapon helps that.

    You think about your state of mind and what x, y, z means to you. You don’t seem to see that, to others, you’re simply some random guy with a deadly weapon strapped to him.

    I can understand what you mean here, but I would expect others to judge me in the same way i am judging them…by their actions. Regardless of what my thoughts are, if i am doing nothing aggressive to them, then they should not have any different a reaction than if i was unarmed. I would react the same way.

    We live in a society with certain assumptions about behavior built in. You don’t ever know, for certain, if a guy is going to come up and stab you in the throat. We assume this is not the case. And, we’re usually right. Trusting a person with a deadly weapon is the same amount of trust you already place in people every day. You trust that they won’t randomly attack you, you trust that the guy passing you going the opposite direction when you’re both doing 60mph won’t hit you. It’s not asking a lot of people to trust that someone won’t shoot them unless that act in a way that warrants it. We already do it with a subset of our population (police).

    I thought I didn’t need to state my point so explicitly, but obviously I was wrong. You say carrying a gun has a dissuading effect, presumably because criminals know that they will get shot by other citizens. Let’s say you hear a shot coming from behind you as somebody shoots someone else, so you whirl around whilst drawing your weapon, to see about a dozen folk all with guns in their hands. Who is the criminal? Who do you shoot? It doesn’t take someone of any ridiculously high intellect or cunning to know that confusion like this can be exploited to get away, so this dissuading effect is somewhat limited. It’s not about the police working out the details after the fact, it’s about the simple fact that your given reason for openly carrying a gun doesn’t work when everyone does it.

    This is a nicely constructed scenario, but it seems a bit farfetched. Everyone just happens to not see what happened? Everyone draws at the same second? How about you don’t shoot anyone, unless they are trying to harm you?

    I would prefer simply not using force at all. Amongst those acting as equals, I would prefer acting with each other for mutual benefit, or simply helping each other out because we recognise that we’re fellow humans.

    I would prefer this too. Unfortunately, it doesn’t seem to be an option :(

    Some people who might do you harm get submachine guns, so you get an assault rifle. Sooner or later, you find yourself in a situation where you don’t dare walk outside your own front door without full tactical gear and festooning yourself with weapons, just in case something goes down. I find that situation ludicrous and undesirable

    Me too…and we find that it doesn’t happen that way. People being allowed to have guns doesn’t yield the wild west. A great example is the big city of Seattle, which has no prohibition on open carry and is in a state with reasonably permissive gun laws. There is no arms race (other than the police militarization, but that’s a separate issue), and crime is low for a big city. It’s a nice place, and guns aren’t a big issue, despite the ease of carrying.

  86. D. C. Sessions says

    The phrase “living in fear” denotes a condition significantly different from “cautious of” or even “has a healthy fear of”. You know what was meant by the statement, and word games are not necessary.

    Sure. I am prudent, you are timid, he is a coward.

  87. says

    Sabrekgb, you keep telling us that you are unusually rational. Calm. Level-headed. Assuming your self-diagnosis is at correct (because again, you look just like anyone else), bully for you. Now on to the next person who feels the need to carry a gun while picking up milk and bread. And the next. And the next.

    As someone said, “probably harmless, but not worth the trouble of finding out.”

    Please try the sociological experiment I suggested with the litterbugs, and let us know how it goes. Think real hard about the ones who take it as a personal affront.

    Oh, and don’t be openly carrying while you perform the experiment. It could skew the results.

  88. Trickster Goddess says

    sabrekgb, one of the biggest flaws in your in your argument for liberal gun laws is your assumption that the tens of millions of your fellow gun carriers are as trained, cautious and levelheaded in a tense situation as you are. It’s not you personally that civilized society needs protection from, it’s all the hotheaded, stupid, nervous and careless gun carriers out there, like the doofus who wandered off leaving a loaded gun in the toy aisle at Target, that are a danger to the public.

    Even if most people tend toward your end of the rationality spectrum, human nature being what it is there are far too many out there who are not.

  89. says

    Oddly enough, there is a negative correlation between those who are legally armed and their likelihood to be a criminal danger to you. So, turns out that somewhat counter-intuitive idea is actually the case: if you see someone with a gun (who is not acting aggressively), they are less likely to be a threat to you.

    The relevant point of comparison is that person without a gun vs. with a gun. Unless you believe guns have some magic calming effect on the people who carry them, being armed always makes someone a greater risk to those around him than being unarmed. Even if the person has no ill-intent.

    The typical gun… enthusiast response is that their guns deter crime. I’m not aware of any solid evidence that the deterrent effect, if it exists at all, outweighs the risk of wrongful injury or death of an innocent person. At any rate, that’s not a choice the gun owner should be allowed to make unilaterally. If other people out in public don’t think it’s a valid tradeoff, they shouldn’t be forced to accept the risks you impose on them.

  90. dan4 says

    I seem to remember conservatives (generally speaking) practically having a nervous breakdown when the Obama Justice Department decided to not criminally charge two “New Black Panthers” after they stood in front of a polling place. One of them had a baseball bat (but not a gun), and one of them wasn’t armed at all…yet these same conservatives are fine and dandy with “Open Carry.” Can someone please explain to me how these two positions are not inconsistent with each other?

  91. says

    Open carrying of firearms, however, does make for a great conversation starter/teaching point/question maker/etc.

    I bet it starts all kinds of conversations as soon as you’re out of earshot. Mostly starting with “what the fuck is wrong with that asshole!?”

  92. says

    Sabrekgb, you keep telling us that you are unusually rational. Calm. Level-headed. Assuming your self-diagnosis is at correct

    Of course it’s not correct. Because if he lives in the USA, he is living in the safest society that has ever existed on Earth, anywhere, and if he were unusually rational he’d realize that most of the “situations” that are likely to arise can be solved with a smartphone, not a gun. Expert survivalists like myself carry not only a smartphone but an extension battery and a fully-populated contact database including the phone number of my attorney and my doctor.

    Let me put it another way – he doesn’t carry a MiG welder around with him, or a pair of “jaws of life” or a circular saw, or a generator and any of those are vastly more likely to be useful, unexpectedly, than a gun. Perhaps, if he’s rational and level-headed he carries a “truck bag” like I do, which contains a small socket set, multi-tip screwdriver, continuity tester, 2 pairs of vice-grips, leather gloves, inverter, duct tape, and a first aid kit. In mine, in case some assclam with a gun shoots someone, I have a military surplus field dressing, that might be handy to stop bleeding if it’s not too severe.

    When you look in a mirror you probably see a rugged individualist. I see a scared, irrational, sucker for marketing.

    Where do you live? Backwoods Alaska? *snort* Probably a nice safe suburb, someplace, where the biggest threat to your life is that you’ll have a heart attack in a fucking traffic jam and fucking die there with your fucking gun on your fucking belt.

  93. says

    (PS – with respect to my previous comment regarding safety: look at demographics. When I lived in Washington, DC, and it was the highest murder rate city in the US, I was unafraid because the demographics of the violence clustered entirely around being african-american, residing in certain parts of the city, and being involved in the drug trade. If you hit that trifecta, your chances of being killed violently did go way up through the roof. But if you were a white suburban person working in high tech, your chances of being killed violently went to near zero and were dramatically overshadowed by your chances of dying from eating too many cheezburgers and sitting in an office chair and dying of a heart attack. If you’re deluding yourself that you’re carrying that gun because you’re a rough and ready public servant, you need to consider whether the demographics of crime in your area justify it, at all. Unless you’re an inner city drug dealer, they probably don’t.)

  94. says

    And, I have to clarify, I wrote:
    Unless you’re an inner city drug dealer

    And I was not blowing the republican race dog-whistle. Being a drug dealer in the suburbs is, in fact, safer in comparison. It’s got to do with the population density and competition for customers. Probably selection pressure from cops is higher, too. I know of what whereof I speak, having lived in East Baltimore near Guilford and North Avenue for 13+ years and in Washington at 14th and Rhode Island for 2.

  95. says

    Ahhhhhhhh, Texas, where men are men and ministers are dead.

    http://crooksandliars.com/2014/07/tx-pastor-shot-during-home-robbery-his-own

    or this one in Pennsylvania, another KooKoo for Handcannonz state:

    http://news.yahoo.com/robbers-attack-pa-gun-collectors-home-leave-31-210454730.html

    “I’m familiar with the majority of rapes being committed by an assailant the victim knows, and my example was a general one used to illustrate the difference in power and how firearms can have an equalizing effect.”

    Really, so, I should expect that Ms. GoodBAR is gonna have weppin locked and loaded when I drop by for a cup of coffee or whatever. Boy, talk about instant hardoff.

    If you “KNOW” that a small woman is powerless against a 6′ man (a fact that is just NOT) and a gun would be the equalizer you must think that the majority of rapists run around in daylight telegraphing their intentions to their would-be victims. Here’s a hint: most don’t.

    ‘How often do you think a park ranger (or even a park employee who is unarmed) confronts an armed hunter over violations of some rule or another? It’s a lot more than the number of times that hunter shoots said person…which is vanishingly rare (i can’t recall any instance offhand).”

    Then you’re not ‘memberin’ real good.

    “Before the weekend, eight Park Service rangers had been slain in the line of duty since the National Park Service was established in 1916. But Johnson noted that five of those have been killed since 1990. Eight FBI agents have been murdered in that 22-year time frame, even though they outnumber park rangers nearly 10 to one.”

    is from an article about the 2012 slaying of a Park Service Ranger at Mount Ranier National Park. Yeah, that shit does happen. I know one local NY DEC cop who is a for real cop (or was until he retired) he’s been threatened by people with rifles and shotguns over things like poaching or road hunting.

    This is from today’s thread

    “As in several other occasions, you’re miscategorizing (or not paying attention to) my position. I said that in the relevant areas, I am at least as well trained as the minimum required for LE: firearms proficiency, judgement, and knowledge of the relevant laws in my municipality.”

    This:

    “I notice in both of your replies an implicit assumption that the police are “trained” and are somehow better than the average gun-carrier in regards to marksmanship, performance in deadly situations, and judgement. That they are, somehow, better than other people and so the arguments you make against letting people have guns in public don’t apply to them. I’m curious as to why this is. What is it that you think divides people who put on a police uniform and those who don’t? What training do they get that other’s are unable to?”

    is from here.

    I’ll ask you, again, to furnish relevant documents to back your assertion. You didn’t before; you won’t now. You’re full of shit.

  96. says

    Target, as a private company, has the right to set store policies on guns, of course.

    First, no, they don’t — they have an OBLIGATION to make their premises safe for both customers and employees. And second, this isn’t about rights, it’s about the sheer fucking stupidity of the policy in question.

    I carry openly in a bank every week.

    For what fucking purpose? If you suspect there might be a robbery or other crime, then you should be talking to the cops (and then staying the fuck away from the danger zone), not taking matters into your own hands. So why do you do it? To feel tough? To intimidate whoever you might get in any kind of argument with?

    You say open-carriers aren’t reasonable. I disagree, and put myself up as an example.

    Your example does not support your assertion. Open-carrying in public places really is not that reasonable a thing to do.

    That said, the simple presence of a weapon, be it a long gun or a pistol, when properly secured, is not a threat.

    Experience shows you are dead wrong — the presence of a gun can very easily and quickly turn an inconsequential dispute into a life-or-death struggle. If I find myself talking to an armed stranger, I have no way of knowing how “reasonable” he is likely to be.

    Someone who is going to rob a bank is not going to walk in with a properly holstered or slung weapon; they will either have their weapon at the ready or concealed. In either case, the “no guns” policy does nothing but inconvenience lawful carriers…

    If the criminals get their guns out first (which, being criminals who intended in advance to commit a crime and all, they’re very likely to do), your gun won’t do any more good. How will you know who to shoot before that crucial instant? Will the bad guys be wearing black hats? Or just black skin?

    All open carriers are not like that douche-nozzle kid you profiled earlier.

    That kid wasn’t like that either, until he was. So tell us, how are we poor shmoes supposed to distinguish the reasonable open-carriers from the unreasonable ones?

  97. EnlightenmentLiberal says

    @Sabrekgb
    Would you be for, against, or indifferent to a new state (and/or federal) law which would require every person to undergo a rigorous training class to obtain a license to own firearms. The license would be issued on a per-person basis and not on a per-firearm basis. This plan would not include a registry of individual firearms. The class itself would involve parts on relevant gun laws and on the laws for self defense. It would include training for handling encounters where one might need to use a gun, and again covering relevant law. Finally, it would include hands-on operation testing. Maybe some philosophy and soul-searching as you make people in the class consider what it would mean to shoot someone, etc etc. I would have this class be at least as hard as a driver’s ed class, or harder. Maybe as hard as a pilot’s license.

    Again, what do you think of this law?

  98. says

    Target, as a private company, has the right to set store policies on guns, of course.

    Not in Georgia and probably several other states as well. They have the right to ban you from the premises if you aren’t wearing a shirt or shoes, but not if you’re carrying a deadly weapon that pointlessly endangers other people. This is what gun-nuts call “freedom”.

  99. says

    Let’s look at some of the consequences of being an armed society with weak gun laws.

    While the overall rates of violent crime are somewhat comparable with the UK, the murder rate is four times higher in the USA, and that’s even with nearly five times as many convicted felons behind bars.

    When criminals know there’s a good chance they’re going to be facing guns in the course of their crimes, strangely enough, they aren’t deterred, they simply seek armaments for themselves. And, of course, in a country awash with guns with virtually no effective legal restrictions on sales and secure storage, they’re trivially easy to obtain. Citywide bans, and even statewide bans can be circumvented by a day trip across city/state lines.

    And once the criminals are armed to the teeth, what happens?

    You get S.W.A.T. teams around the country armed with military grade hardware smashing their way into any place that might house a criminal suspect.

    In other words, you get an arms race.

    Yes, there are responsible gun owners. At least, they’re responsible gun owners until they forget to unload their gun before cleaning it and send a bullet into their neighbor’s home, or they leave it where their grandchild can find it and use it to kill herself (a friend’s parents did that), or he gets into an argument with his wife and shoots her, committing suicide afterwards (another person I knew). All responsible gun owners… until they weren’t.

    But for all the responsible gun owners, there are plenty more legal gun owners who aren’t. Women are actually less safe in homes with guns in them than without, because they are more likely to come to harm from the gun of someone they know than someone they don’t. There are gun owners like George Zimmerman with a chip on their shoulder out looking for trouble and taking the law into their own hands (now, more than ever thanks to stand your ground laws). There are gun owners who do not secure their guns from the children in their home, as illustrated by the endless stream of accidental shootings of kids on a daily basis.

    Mass shootings (three or more victims) are a once in a generation event in other modern democratic nations. Only in America have they become a monthly, almost weekly occurrence. Even accounting for population size, the USA has a large lead in the mass shootings numbers game.

    The fallacy of the “You have nothing to fear from a responsible gun owner” argument is that it doesn’t account for all the collateral damage living in an armed society with lax gun laws brings with it.

    The problem with insisting on the right to bear arms, is that it’s often someone else who suffers the inevitable consequences of that right you claim.

  100. says

    FYI for anyone who thinks banning handguns prevents handgun violence.

    In the same ten year span in both the US and Canada, they saw the same % drop in handgun violence. One country banned handguns the other did not. They are on the same continent and share much in the way of demographics. According to the RCMP the reason for the drop being the same in both countries wasn’t banning handguns, it was cell phones becoming more and more available. I am not saying that this is 100% the way it is, but it is strong evidence that guns are not arbitrarily violent or lead to violence. They are an extension of the society and more directly the person using it. All the evidence I have found for and against gun control are pretty much inconclusive, you will find situations where gun control is better and worse and the same for if there is less gun control.

    If I wore and open-carry gun was polite and didn’t act irrational, why am I violent or promoting violence? Anyone asserting this shows they don’t think people are capable of rational thought (because of their fear of guns), and that in their world view no one can be (because they are too small to see anyone else as rational, just because a gun is present, I will specify when I say present, gun holstered and the person is not using it in any threatening manor).

    Rational reasons a person might open carry a handgun. You live in an area that is frequented by dangerous animals such as Mountain Lions, Wolves, and other predatory animals that are wild and dangerous (usually rural areas). You may never have a need to use your gun to protect your child or yourself from these predators but if you choose not to arm yourself and the situation arises, you can either watch your child be ripped to shreds or try to intervene hope that the animal doesn’t try to kill you. Second you may be forced (by financial or other circumstances) to live in an area where violent crime is high and/or shootings are not at all that uncommon.

    And now let’s get to everyone’s straw man, an argument that the person carrying the gun is most likely going to be violent and irrational or those promoting gun control are mostly irrational and hate guns. An irrational person is dangerous with or without a weapon. If you cannot assess a situation by context then your argument is flawed. If it is legal and person wants to carry a firearm for their safety, until they use it improperly, they’re not a violent or irrational person. I also understand that some people have grown up with the perception that handguns promote violence. Just because you feel this way doesn’t mean that you’re irrational, and you may feel for your safety less guns is better. But it in no way gives you the right to treat those who don’t agree with your world view as ignorant gun toting vigilantes hellbent on violence. Until a better weapon is devised, the gun much like the sword once was, is the most efficient weapon and it would be silly to carry an inefficient tool, much like not wanting air bags because your car has seat belts.

    I said it earlier but I will restate it. I fully agree that a business has the right to refuse service if a person’s actions within that business legal or not are putting off customers and hurting the business. The door swing both ways.

  101. zmidponk says

    sabrekgb #89:

    Then i’ll just go ahead and make that decision for myself. No me gusta Paternalism.

    I disagree, It very much does. Saying to someone that they should accept not being able to go somewhere at night because it’s a bad part of town is giving control to those who would attack them. Telling a woman to not wear a bikini because she might get raped is giving control to those who would rape her. Now, in given situations, you might exercise some caution, but that doesn’t mean it is right that we cede control to those who wrongly intimidate through threat of criminal violence. We were talking about fear. People should be able to go where they wish or wear what they want without fear of being harmed for it…carrying a weapon helps that.

    You’re still not getting the point. You are saying that you carry a gun to ensure your own safety, including when you’re walking through bad parts of town, such as areas that gangs consider their territory. In areas such as that, carrying a gun will be seen by such a gang as a threat, a challenge, or both. So it does the exact opposite of doing what you seem to think it does in all situations and cases, bar none. If you want to take that risk, that’s your decision, but it doesn’t change the fact that risk exists.

    I can understand what you mean here, but I would expect others to judge me in the same way i am judging them…by their actions. Regardless of what my thoughts are, if i am doing nothing aggressive to them, then they should not have any different a reaction than if i was unarmed. I would react the same way.

    And again, you are going on about your mindset and what x, y, z means to you. All anyone else sees is a guy with a deadly weapon.

    We live in a society with certain assumptions about behavior built in. You don’t ever know, for certain, if a guy is going to come up and stab you in the throat. We assume this is not the case. And, we’re usually right. Trusting a person with a deadly weapon is the same amount of trust you already place in people every day. You trust that they won’t randomly attack you, you trust that the guy passing you going the opposite direction when you’re both doing 60mph won’t hit you. It’s not asking a lot of people to trust that someone won’t shoot them unless that act in a way that warrants it. We already do it with a subset of our population (police).

    When I see someone with a deadly weapon, I have to make the assumption that they are going to use it, otherwise why would they have it? Even you say that’s why you have a deadly weapon – it’s just that you say you will only use it on people you think are a threat to you or others. As I’m not psychic, I can’t tell if any individual person with a deadly weapon can or will use it only for such threats or not. And that’s leaving aside the possibility of people misidentifying threats, or not using their gun to take out such threats in a manner that will be safe for bystanders, which could include me, or any other unintended consequence of someone pulling out a gun and starting to shoot in public.

    This is a nicely constructed scenario, but it seems a bit farfetched.

    You don’t seem to be very familiar with the concept of ‘example’, do you? That’s twice now you’ve missed that I’m giving one possible example out of many.

    Everyone just happens to not see what happened?

    It only requires one to not see what happened for confusion to begin. If more than one does, that confusion is multiplied.

    Everyone draws at the same second?

    No, just roughly at the same time – as would happen if, as in your utopia, everyone walks around armed and pulls their weapon to deal with threats.

    How about you don’t shoot anyone, unless they are trying to harm you?

    1) You gave protecting others as one possible scenario you might need a weapon. Now you’re saying no-one should use a weapon on anyone who isn’t a direct threat to them. This would appear to be completely contradictory.

    2) This entirely nullifies the dissuading effect you were talking about – after all, if the criminal takes out their chosen target with their first shot, that’s a case of ‘job done, let’s go home’, and, by the rule you’ve just given, the only one who has the right to shoot them has their body lying cooling on the sidewalk. If you then try to use your gun to stop them leaving, which would actually contradict the rule you’ve just given, by that same rule, you are now actually a threat to them, so they are justified in using their gun on you.

    I would prefer this too. Unfortunately, it doesn’t seem to be an option

    Really? I’ve used that option many times in my life. Maybe it says something about you that you think it doesn’t even exist.

    Me too…and we find that it doesn’t happen that way. People being allowed to have guns doesn’t yield the wild west. A great example is the big city of Seattle, which has no prohibition on open carry and is in a state with reasonably permissive gun laws. There is no arms race (other than the police militarization, but that’s a separate issue), and crime is low for a big city. It’s a nice place, and guns aren’t a big issue, despite the ease of carrying.

    If you always want to use ‘excess of force when interacting with those who would do me harm’, as you put it, then you have to make sure you’re ALWAYS better armed than the other guy. Unless you’re saying that you know that it is simply not possible for people who might mean you harm to get their hands on submachine guns, assault rifles, etc, etc, etc, in order to abide by your own rule, you have to always make sure you are as heavily armed and armored as possible. Of course, the irony is that the main reason why someone who might do you harm could be so heavily armed is how easy it is for people to get guns in the US.

  102. says

    They usually don’t have shopping carts, or bags, or children walking with them.

    I work in retail security (need to be careful on details since I’m using my real name here) and I can tell you that while mass shooters may not have those things with them, shoplifters do. Shoplifter who are known or suspected junkies, shoplifters who have racked up hundreds or over a thousand dollars in thefts we know about but can’t quite turn over to the police yet, shoplifters who blend in with the crowd right up until they pass by the checklanes. Now, more likely than not , they’d have no interest in shooting me…but an openly strapped shoplifter is a shoplifter who can take whatever he wants. That’s why I don’t like the idea of people openly carrying in my store.

    Besides that, I’ve seen people get so worked up over the most meaningless crap. I do not want to see how a person who would curse out a cashier over us being sold out of a sale item would handle a firearm.

  103. D. C. Sessions says

    An irrational person is dangerous with or without a weapon.

    “Dangerous” is not Boolean. It is at least scalar.

    Example: a spitting furious 8-year-old can hurt you. How much she can hurt you varies rather seriously depending on whether or not she has a shotgun. There have been several mass-murder attempts in schools lately where nobody died because the attacker had a knife instead of a semiautomatic firearm.

    As for rationality, I will concede that many people carrying firearms are rational. So if they feel it’s necessary to go armed to a store, I’ll accept their judgment and leave. I might mention on the way out that the management might do something about whatever it is that has so many rational people feeling that they need to arm themselves before entering her establishment.

    As for trips in wild country: yup. Large animals can be dangerous, which is why most of the serious back-country people I know carry them. On at least two occasions, it saved someone’s life (example: treed on a fishing trip by an enraged moose. Seriously.) Of course, there was the kid who killed his friend with a ricochet when shooting a rattler (the rattler prudently left.) How this applies to a trip to buy milk is not clear.

  104. says

    Rational reasons a person might open carry a handgun. You live in an area that is frequented by dangerous animals such as Mountain Lions, Wolves, and other predatory animals that are wild and dangerous (usually rural areas). You may never have a need to use your gun to protect your child or yourself from these predators but if you choos…

    What a fantastic scenario! And you had to throw a smidgeon of “protect the kids!” In for comedic relief.
    I actually live in one of those areas where there’s wildlife, and have seen bears, a bobcat (once!) and, um… Assloads of deer and woodchucks and a few porcupines and … They were all busy trying to get away from the scary human. The vast majority of gun fantasists won’t have close encounters with wildlife beyond squirrels and woodchucks, and if they do the vast majority of those situations will be resolved without a need for a weapon.

    Besides, if wolves and bears are your concern, I think you just explained that you’re an asshole to take a gun to a store. Because there aren’t incidents of savage wildlife in Target or Wal-Mart.

  105. Jordan Genso says

    @77 sabrekgb

    The stranger carrying a gun aggressively should surely be cause for alarm. The stranger who you cannot see if armed acting aggressively should also be cause for alarm. The armed stranger who is not acting aggressively may be cause for attention, but not alarm until and unless his actions change.

    I can agree with that counterpoint, but it fails to account for the fact that your decision to carry a gun is not a reaction to strangers acting aggressively- it is a proactive step you take before you know if you are going to encounter an aggressive stranger.

    Likewise then, it makes sense for everyone else to take the proactive step (if they see an armed stranger) to immediately leave rather than wait around to determine their level of aggression. Again, your position relies on prejudice against strangers, but then you don’t think everyone else should share that prejudice if the stranger they see is armed. You want us to take time to evaluate the situation before determining whether or not to leave, whereas you’re making your decision to carry a gun prior to even knowing what situation you’re going to find yourself in.

    Relevant to this are the statistics on CCW holders in TX and their rates of crime commission of all kinds, including violent. They are significantly lower than the average population.

    That really has no relevance to the discussion, since there is no way for us to know if the person carrying a firearm is a CCW or not. What is the crime rate for the sub-population “individuals carrying firearms”? That would include the CCW holders, but it would also include every criminal who carried a firearm while committing a crime. If you lump those two populations together (as you should, since there is no way for us to know which population the stranger carrying a gun falls into), then I’m fairly certain the crime rate would be higher than the average population.

    Oddly enough, there is a negative correlation between those who are legally armed and their likelihood to be a criminal danger to you. So, turns out that somewhat counter-intuitive idea is actually the case: if you see someone with a gun (who is not acting aggressively), they are less likely to be a threat to you.

    I understand that point, but every second I spend hesitating (in order to find out how aggressive the individual is) is a second that I am further opening myself up to potential danger. Secondly, that correlation is unsustainable. Eventually, if society reaches the point where we agree with you (that a stranger openly carrying a gun is not a threat), then criminals will begin to openly carry as a way to surprise future victims.

    Those who mean ill with their weapons will conceal them until they need them. The would not advertise the fact that they are armed if their intention is to take someone by surprise.

    Except you are saying you’d be more surprised by an individual who is openly carrying that turns out to be a criminal rather than an individual who has concealed their weapon turning out to be a criminal. Again, if everyone was like you, then the criminals should openly carry if they want to take the public by surprise.

  106. D. C. Sessions says

    Those who mean ill with their weapons will conceal them until they need them. The would not advertise the fact that they are armed if their intention is to take someone by surprise.

    About as clear an admission as we’re likely to see that open carry is a gang sign — “he’s packing, so he’s a member of my tribe and no threat.”

    Conversely, of course, someone who isn’t openly carrying is a greater threat — and they’re all around you!

  107. says

    @110:

    Or, for those with a lack of imagination:

    http://time.com/2952520/georgia-safe-carry-protection-act-gun-law/

    And the signs in the photo:

    Silencers? for HUNTING, seriously?

    Bambi, he sleeps with the fishes.

    @106:

    I have been told by several gunzloonz that they will ONLY act on what they consider a threat to them or their property*.

    OTOH, I had a guy tell me last night that his “UTAH PERMIT**” instructor told him that if he and other permit holders saw someone committing arson they were legally empowered to use deadly force to stop that person. He’s a very nice young man and I seriously doubt that he is on DefCon3 when he goes to the mall. I suggested that he might want to run that by a good criminal lawyer*** before acting on such advice.

    In my search for something else I came across a piece about the origin of the term “assault rifle”. According to this:

    “The term “assault rifle” was expanded and broadened when gun manufacturers began to sell firearms modeled after the new military rifles to civilians. In 1984, Guns & Ammo advertised a book called “Assault Firearms,” which it said was “full of the hottest hardware available today.”

    “The popularly held idea that the term ‘assault weapon’ originated with antigun activists, media or politicians is wrong,” [Phillip] Peterson [author of the Gun Digest Buyer's Guide to Tactical Rifles] wrote. “The term was first adopted by the manufacturers, wholesalers, importers and dealers in the American firearms industry to stimulate sales of certain firearms that did not have an appearance that was familiar to many firearm
    owners. The manufacturers and gun writers of the day needed a catchy name to identify this new type of gun.””

    (Source: http://beforeitsnews.com/libertarian/2013/01/nyt-which-uncritically-refers-to-assault-weapon-all-the-time-explains-why-the-term-is-misleading-2479988.html)

    indicates that the origin of the term is not as clear cut as the 2ndmendmentmilitatarians would like it to be. It might NOT be a purely inappropriate scare tactic of the ANTI’s. I find it interesting, btw, that much of the rhetoric in the “debate” about gun control is reminiscent of that used by the Anti-choice crowd.

    In any event, I also found out that while “Assault WEAPON” is completely a construct of the LIEBRAL ANTI’s that “Assault Rifle” is actually a term…Well, let’s just say, “do you know who else called them assault rifles?”. That’s right, Adolf-Mr.FUCKING ANTIGUN-in-the-flesh Hitler! I shit you not, that is the premise of many, many gunzloonz out there. Google it, see for yourselves.

    Sabrekgb:

    I believe I mentioned once or twice before that the Texas study–the one you’ve used as a base for your arguments about the oh, so very lawful Texas gunz ownerz is fifteen fucking years old and does not include who knows how many thousands of gunz being used illegally or “accidents” that resulted in injuries or deaths for which no charges were filed against the shooters.

    * The Swiss Army Knife/Multi-tool of gun permits, you can used it almost anywhere!

    ** I think for a lot of them, “property” might include, but not be limited, fast food, their car and other portable/drivable goods, wives, children and whatever public space they are currently in.

    *** is that a double reduncacy, “good criminal lawyer”?

  108. Childermass says

    … what Target is undoubtedly worried about is some idiot redneck getting people killed or injured by trying to stop an armed robbery with a gun.

    There’s also the distinct possibility that someone might simply tote their gun into the center of the store and just open fire on everyone.

    Wow.

    I thought that that when the gun nuts say that their opponents think that putting up a sign or passing a law will make the criminals automatically obey that the gun nuts were making a strawman.

    No criminal intent on creating a bloodbath will obey any sign that Target puts up.

  109. observer says

    Look at the photos of open carry advocates marching. Many of them do not have their rifles slung, but are in fact holding them in their hands. This is an inherently dangerous practice regardless of the individual’s intent. It is one thing to have a rifle in hand and ready when you’re out hunting in the woods, though even that is risky . It’s quite another to have a rifle in hand in a crowded business or on a city street. This is foolish in the extreme.

    As far as normalizing open carry, when nobody is alarmed by the presence of armed people, criminals will carry openly.

  110. says

    DC Sessions @#110
    Now imagine if they were all armed.

    Horrifying mental picture. I guess the only way to make the store safe would be to have an ED-209 guarding the end of the aisles in case a gunfight broke out.

    “An armed society is a polite society” – we’ve all heard it. It’s also a society with a higher mortality rate. This historian recalls that Louis XIV banned duelling because they were losing too many nobles (who were needed for cannon fodder in endless wars) in duels. Duelling was also prohibited in the 1st Empire for the same reasons, etc. While these were armed societies, the violence almost always fell along class lines. A quintessential example would be Voltaire’s non-duel with the Duke of Richelieu which Richelieu resolved by having a bunch of thugs beat the shit out of Voltaire in an alley; Voltaire was not high enough ranked to get a fair fight with a duke. The same was the case in feudal Japan; it was acceptable to kill down the social ladder but up? Forget it. There are celebrated incidents such as the 47 Ronin, that illustrate how rare and difficult it was. In other words, when someone promotes the idea that an armed society is polite, what they are really promoting is the idea that a society in which class structures are enforced violently down the social ladder – is a “polite” society. Because repression is o-so-polite. We see the same thing, exactly, in the US when the Black Panthers had the temerity to start carrying guns while dark-skinned.

  111. throwaway, never proofreads, every post a gamble says

    No criminal intent on creating a bloodbath will obey any sign that Target puts up.

    But it will make them seem conspicuous and allow people time to react accordingly. If you KNOW that there are no firearms allowed on the premises, than anyone with a firearm becomes a threat.

  112. throwaway, never proofreads, every post a gamble says

    I mean, seriously, “Oh, that person has an AR-15 in a store with a no-firearms policy. Surely they just want to browse the toy section.” That is not going to be anyone’s thought process in such a situation. And the fact that someone could walk in with concealed weapons is just indicating that a broader regulation is required.

  113. throwaway, never proofreads, every post a gamble says

    The other contrasting situation is that accidental shootings are more likely in the presence of things that can shoot. This is really a no-brainer.

  114. Zeppelin says

    @105

    I think everyone here has the gun debate handled, but I’d just like to point out that

    Until a better weapon is devised, the gun much like the sword once was, is the most efficient weapon

    shows an ignorance of the history of weapons and armament that doesn’t bode well for the person’s opinion on gun policy.

    “The Sword” isn’t a thing. The most commonly used weapon in pre-firearms times was the spear and other polearms, not the sword. Medieval western knights fought primarily with lances and spears, for example. Ditto for samurai. And the common foot soldier sure as hell didn’t use a sword as his primary weapon.

    Swords were rare as battlefield weapons and mostly status symbols and duelling weapons. Later on swords, much like handguns in the US, were primarily civilian weapons (in countries where civilian arms weren’t banned, which they were in most of them) because they were fairly light and easy to carry around. The civilian sword was a symbol of bourgeois status, much like the personal firearm in the US is a cherished symbol of status for right-wingers.
    The western fetishisation of The Sword is mostly a result of 19th century romantic ideas about chivalry.

    Basically what I’m trying to say is maybe Wes Aaron needs to inform himself about history before making historical arguments.

  115. says

    “If you KNOW that there are no firearms allowed on the premises, than anyone with a firearm becomes a threat.”

    If the store’s policy of “No guns allowed” is not in conflict with that state’s laws the toter would be committing trespass, a misdemeanor at least. So much for LAGO.

  116. says

    People with firearms killed over 500 HUMAN BEINGS during robberies and 3 women, during rapes and 135 gangland ASSASINATIONS and almost SEVEN HUNDRED young lives were snuffed in teenage gang killings. Fortunately only about 1,800arguments ended in someone getting shot to death.

  117. says

    Wes Aaron @105, you might want to re-evaluate whatever sources on gun policy you’re reading. Handguns have never been banned in Canada, and there have been no significant changes to handgun laws since cell phones began to become common. Legal handguns in Canada fall under the restricted firearm category. Banned handguns include those with barrels under 4.1 inches, and in .25 and .32 calibers, except for specific weapons used in international target shooting competitions. In other words the law is designed to keep the most easily concealed firearms out of circulation. So a Smith and Wesson Model 500 .500 Magnum with a 10 inch barrel is a legal handgun in Canada, while a .25 caliber FN Baby Browning is a prohibited handgun.

  118. says

    democommie “Fortunately only about 1,800arguments ended in someone getting shot to death.”
    To be fair, over half of those were due to someone spoiling Game of Thrones.

  119. says

    You live in an area that is frequented by dangerous animals such as Mountain Lions, Wolves, and other predatory animals that are wild and dangerous (usually rural areas).

    Goodness. I don’t have a problem with people who live out in the boonies carrying guns when they go out in the woods. I don’t even have a problem with people packing heat when they go into “bad neighborhoods” at night, though it seriously calls into question their judgement. What we are talking about here is carrying guns into a retail store in a highly-trafficked and visible commercial area during business hours where the odds of a wild animal attack or gang rape are nil, yet if the gun gets misused (like being left in the toy aisle), a large number of people are in danger. It is difficult to imagine any possible good that might come from the gun that outweighs the risk it imposes on other people, and gun owners should have the sense and decency not to pack heat in such places. That so many insist on doing it anyway, often with the scariest and most dangerous weapons they can find, indicates an intent to inflict fear and discomfort on other people. Store patrons and certainly store managers should have the right not to be endangered and intimidated by someone who’s at best just trying to make a political statement, and at worst, acting like a bully. That this is even a debatable issue is mind-blowing.

  120. Olav says

    I am quite content living in a country where people innocently walking into stores while carrying guns a. does not happen and b. would be a reason for immediate intervention by police specialists.

    The fetishisation of guns as demonstrated again in this discussion truly does seem alien to me.

  121. sabrekgb says

    @100 democommie

    Really, so, I should expect that Ms. GoodBAR is gonna have weppin locked and loaded when I drop by for a cup of coffee or whatever. Boy, talk about instant hardoff.

    If you “KNOW” that a small woman is powerless against a 6′ man (a fact that is just NOT) and a gun would be the equalizer you must think that the majority of rapists run around in daylight telegraphing their intentions to their would-be victims. Here’s a hint: most don’t.

    The fuck…? I don’t even know what you mean here, and it’s not just your use of twisted, over-the-top, flowery-ish language and weird spelling this time. Are you saying that there is no physical power difference between a small woman and a large man?

    I’ll ask you, again, to furnish relevant documents to back your assertion. You didn’t before; you won’t now.

    Of course not, that would be silly of me. Just because you ask does not mean i feel a need to put up public links to documents with personal information on the open internet, lol. How ’bout you furnish your Social Security card for us to see? What, yer not chicken’ are ya?

    You remember the discussion we had, because you posted snippets, but you never did answer the question… Also, how does high-speed pursuit driving factor in? Got an answer for that yet?

    And that news article you posted about the ranger death…did you even read it? She wasn’t killed by a hunter, she was killed while manning a roadblock in an attempt to find a fleeing Seattle murderer. Kind of a different situation than what i was talking about. Still, my interest was piqued and i’ll be doing a bit more research about park ranger fatalities in the future.

    @101 Raging Bee

    First, no, they don’t — they have an OBLIGATION to make their premises safe for both customers and employees. And second, this isn’t about rights, it’s about the sheer fucking stupidity of the policy in question.

    Um, yes they do…? You don’t think the business can set it’s own policies (within the law)? Also, if they are obliged to make the premises safe for customers, decide to ban weapons, and then i am shot by someone who disregards the rules and have no means of defending myself…does that mean they have failed in their obligation and owe me compensation of some sort?

    If you’re going to insist on disarming someone, then you take their defense into your own hands and should be liable if something happens.

    For what fucking purpose? If you suspect there might be a robbery or other crime, then you should be talking to the cops (and then staying the fuck away from the danger zone), not taking matters into your own hands. So why do you do it? To feel tough? To intimidate whoever you might get in any kind of argument with?

    No, because that’s how i’m going about all my business. I’m running several errands in a row when i go to the bank, and i carry there for the same reason i carry everywhere else. Also, as an aside, if i suspect there is a robbery and there are no police nearby, then i very likely will intervene. This would be a choice i make, recognizing the danger involved. If i can help, i probably won’t run away. Bank robberies are rare, though, so hopefully this will never happen and i can continue to go right along depositing my checks every month without hassle.

    Your example does not support your assertion. Open-carrying in public places really is not that reasonable a thing to do.
    If you define the argument such that those who disagree with you are automatically irrational, then sure. That’s dishonest, though.

    If the criminals get their guns out first (which, being criminals who intended in advance to commit a crime and all, they’re very likely to do), your gun won’t do any more good. How will you know who to shoot before that crucial instant? Will the bad guys be wearing black hats? Or just black skin?

    If something like that happens, the details will matter, and i suppose we’ll see when it happens. I’d much rather analyze any faults after the fact though, than not have needed tools at the time. Also, nice implication of racism there…something I said make you think i don’t like people with black skin? Or that i don’t have black skin myself, for that matter? Or maybe you just pulled that out of your ass in an attempt to paint me (and by extension, others who carry weapons in public) as racist without having to actually make that assertion directly? Have some evidence before you trot out that particular paintbrush.

    So tell us, how are we poor shmoes supposed to distinguish the reasonable open-carriers from the unreasonable ones?
    The same way you do everyone, but their actions toward you. If you can get over defining carrying a weapon (openly or otherwise) as irrational itself (oh, look, the cops do it too…how irrational), then you could make a good go at it. Just interact with them the same way you do with people now. I mean, you don’t go around hitting people and stuff now, do you?

  122. sabrekgb says

    @102 Enlightenment Liberal

    The devil is in the details, but in general i would be supportive of the law you outlined with the following caveats:
    -The cost of the class/license should be low or nil to avoid situations whereby only the wealthy are able to be legally armed. Government subsidized, perhaps.
    -The control of the curriculum should be transparent and non-partisan.
    -These licenses are “shall issue” and open to anyone who has not shown themself to be a significant danger.
    -Assurance that such a program will not “mission creep” into a tool by which to increase restrictions in the future.
    -“Let me see your license” laws are not used as a bludgeon to dissuade carry.

    Having gone through both driving training and flying training, i would submit that the level of the class should fall somewhere closer to the driving end.

    If such a program were instituted, would you then have issue with such licensed carriers possessing firearms in all but the most secure areas? Schools, banks, government buildings, bars, and such?

    In any case, excellent question, and i think a pretty good attempt to actually engage as opposed to several others who have commented.

  123. MattP (must mock his crappy brain) says

    @ sabrekgb

    Also, as an aside, if i suspect there is a robbery and there are no police nearby, then i very likely will intervene. This would be a choice i make, recognizing the danger involved.

    Hello Mr. Zimmerman.

    The gun is a tool with one very simple purpose: kill something. What are you hunting in a grocery store or a bank? If you are carrying a gun while not hunting animals in a designated area or sport shooting targets at a range, then you are shouting from the mountaintop that you are hunting humans. While you may claim to be rational, that is the same claim made by the gun fondlers I know (dad, his friend, and others) who are clearly not terribly rational or reasonable (‘birthers’, ‘Obama’s a communist muslim’, etc.). That ass who scared the shit out of those women because they needed to verify some part of his address to make an over-the-phone credit card transaction is also a guy who shot his mother while cleaning a handgun, has been referred to, repeatedly, by many friends/family/associates as ‘batshit’, and has proven himself dangerous… he still carries, even at the dinner table. That shit does not foster open discussion and debate.

    And why has Australia not yet descended to ‘two men enter, one man leaves‘ because they implemented decent gun control legislation?

    There are many ways we know to reduce crime, but getting everyone to carry around guns is not one of them (the presence of guns has a strong tendency to make violence against women fatal for women). Limit environmental pollution (lead, endocrine disruptors, etc.) from industry, and you improve the health and outcomes of everyone exposed. Ensure everyone has adequate food, clothing, housing, and health care (medical, mental, dental, contraceptive/abortion, etc.), and you decrease poverty and largely remove the need for theft (barring ‘white collar’ or thrill/spree crime, or ideology-fueled violence). End the fucked up drug war, and you eliminate the source of that widespread violence and incarceration/apartheid. Teach people about consent, and you help decrease all forms of assault and rape. It should not be left up to the victims to deter or end a crime against themselves or others, it is up to society to destroy the structures that lead to crime and ensure those who continue to commit crimes are appropriately prosecuted and rehabilitated by an open and accountable government.

  124. says

    Also, as an aside, if i suspect there is a robbery and there are no police nearby, then i very likely will intervene. This would be a choice i make, recognizing the danger involved. If i can help, i probably won’t run away.

    Here, in a nutshell, is the real fantasy of a gun owner — that they will somehow be able to coolly and calmly judge a situation and act rationally in high stress and high risk circumstances that they have no training for.

    As an adolescent, I used to dream of being there to rescue the girl of my dreams from certain death. I grew out of it, I guess some people don’t.

  125. says

    Those who mean ill with their weapons will conceal them until they need them.

    Those who mean to bully and intimidate people with their weapons WOULD carry them openly; as would paranoid idiots with no tactical sense who think carrying a gun automatically makes everything right.

    In either case, the “no guns” policy does nothing but inconvenience lawful carriers…

    We’re talking about situations involving the possible loss of innocent lives. Your “inconvenience” is utterly insignificant compared to that; and the fact that you bring it up shows, once again, that you’re not a reasonable person, and can’t be trusted to behave responsibly.

    Also, if they are obliged to make the premises safe for customers, decide to ban weapons, and then i am shot by someone who disregards the rules and have no means of defending myself…does that mean they have failed in their obligation and owe me compensation of some sort?

    If you come in with a gun, then get into a fight with it, and I get caught in the crossfire, would that mean YOU owe me compensation of some sort?

    And if large numbers of people avoid that store because it appears to be full of unstable, irresponsible trigger-happy customers, would you owe the store compensation for lost business?

    I’m running several errands in a row when i go to the bank, and i carry there for the same reason i carry everywhere else.

    You still haven’t told us what that reason is. If you really have good reason to fear a criminal act in any of the places you frequent, shouldn’t you be calling the cops and/or avoiding such dangerous situations? And why the fuck can’t you just leave your gun in your car if you don’t think you’ll need to use it in every single errand you run?

    Also, as an aside, if i suspect there is a robbery and there are no police nearby, then i very likely will intervene.

    There’s a strong chance that such intervention could turn a robbery into a bloodbath. Even the best-trained marksmen sometimes hit the wrong target, and in a bank, there’s plenty of wrong targets to hit. Do you really think that protecting someone else’s MONEY is more important than protecting lives?

    I’d much rather analyze any faults after the fact though, than not have needed tools at the time.

    Yeah, better to think things through AFTER irreversible harm is done, than risk not being able to charge in shooting. Once again, you prove you’re not a reasonable person.

    Also, nice implication of racism there…something I said make you think i don’t like people with black skin?

    Yeah — the fact that other blatant racists, like George Zimmerman and that white guy who killed an unarmed black woman under a new “stand your ground” law, used the very same rhetoric as you do to justify their racist violence.

  126. says

    In any case, excellent question, and i think a pretty good attempt to actually engage as opposed to several others who have commented.

    So says someone who hasn’t budged an inch from the start of the thread. “Trying to educate” is not the same as engaging in a discussion where one takes an open minded approach to the issues of gun ownership. Stop trying to pretend you are the only reasonable person in the room. You are as firmly entrenched in your own position as anyone else here.

  127. sabrekgb says

    @91 georgewiman

    you keep telling us that you are unusually rational. Calm. Level-headed.

    I don’t explicitly say that, but i’m glad that you take that from my posts. As for the experiment, i actually think that i will, one of these weekends

    @92 Trickster Goddess
    Thank you very much for the compliment. I understand your concerns, but what we must do is ensure that in the process of doing our best to reduce the “doofus” factor, we don’t restrict the rights of others. I’m not sure what the optimal solution is, i just do what i can based on the law as it stands and advocate for or against given positions. Perhaps there are ways to come to a better agreement.

    It may very well be that we have to accept a slightly higher risk of accidents in order to maintain the right to keep and bear arms. I, personally, find it a good trade to have the means of self-defense at my disposal even if that means i must accept the risk of others around me having the same. There are real trade offs between safety/security and freedom.

  128. D. C. Sessions says

    It should not be left up to the victims to deter or end a crime against themselves or others

    That’s a rather powerfully ideological statement. You do realize that in the Libertarian Utopia, it is precisely up to you and pretty much you alone to look out for the safety of you and yours, don’t you?

    Once we normalize “stand your ground” type self-defense, there’s precious little justification for using the power of the State to confiscate personal hard-earned money to pay for parasitical “police” or “fire” departments. Real Americans take care of those things for themselves or, if their time is too valuable, hire others to do so.

    Since those and the so-called “public education” are the most visible “services” provided by the jack-booted thugs of the State (and we’re well on our way to full privatization of all three) there will be very little remaining public support for the rest and we can finally get rid of oppressive impositions of the Nanny State such as (worst of all) “Obamacare,” “Medicare,” and “Social Security.” At that point drowning the rest in a bathtub will be almost trivially easy.

  129. D. C. Sessions says

    I, personally, find it a good trade to have the means of self-defense at my disposal even if that means i must accept the risk of others around me having the same. There are real trade offs between safety/security and freedom.

    Nice of you to decide that for the rest of us. How many deaths per year do you consider an acceptable price for the exercise of your personal fetish?

  130. EnlightenmentLiberal says

    @sabrekgb
    I’m undecided if gun rights are a good idea. However, I think the kind of class I outlined is a no-brainer. It also neatly dodges all constitutional issues IHMO, for clearly by original intent and understanding the states could compel members of the militia, aka everyone, to attend regular training. (Of course, at the same time, I recognize that most states had laws on the books which allowed people to rather easily dodge militia training.)

  131. D. C. Sessions says

    It also neatly dodges all constitutional issues IHMO, for clearly by original intent and understanding the states could compel members of the militia, aka everyone, to attend regular training.

    Original intent is what today’s Supreme Court says it is, neither more nor less.

  132. sabrekgb says

    @106 zmidponk

    When I see someone with a deadly weapon, I have to make the assumption that they are going to use it, otherwise why would they have it? Even you say that’s why you have a deadly weapon – it’s just that you say you will only use it on people you think are a threat to you or others. As I’m not psychic, I can’t tell if any individual person with a deadly weapon can or will use it only for such threats or not.

    That’s silly, and not how you live your life in other areas. You see people with deadly weapons all the time, knives, cars, bats, and don’t know exactly what is going to happen with them. Could that guy in the parking lot swerve into you? Could that guy playing baseball come bash you in the noggin’? All you have to go on is them saying they won’t. We live in a society in which the presumption is that certain rules of behavior will be followed and we assume that to be the case (despite not being psychic) until and unless evidence to the contrary is observed.

    You don’t seem to be very familiar with the concept of ‘example’, do you? That’s twice now you’ve missed that I’m giving one possible example out of many.

    Right, but an unlikely and unrealistic example doesn’t really help.

    in your utopia, everyone walks around armed and pulls their weapon to deal with threats.

    That is far from my utopia, and having a weapon does not mean drawing is the first or only response to threats. Indeed, it should only be done when necessary. Plus, let’s keep in mind that even if existing gun laws were relaxed more, there will only (as it stands now…things are always subject to change in future) ever be a certain percentage of the population that carries in public. Through personal conviction against it, to a distaste or lack of proficiency in firearms, or simple apathy…the number will never approach 100%. I dare say it is unlikely to approach 10%, though i could be wrong.

    You gave protecting others as one possible scenario you might need a weapon. Now you’re saying no-one should use a weapon on anyone who isn’t a direct threat to them. This would appear to be completely contradictory.

    No, you’re misunderstanding what i wrote. Protecting others is a legitimate reason to carry and to exercise deadly force. I was responding in that part you quoted to your particular (unrealistic) hypothetical…as in, if you don’t know what’s going on, you reserve judgement and do not fire on someone who is not threatening you. If you don’t know what is going on, then investigation is in order, and this is more the purview of police. So long as no one is being harmed, there’s no reason not to wait for them to come and sort it out, in your hypothetical example. Again, this is an unrealistic scenario…

    Really? I’ve used that option many times in my life. Maybe it says something about you that you think it doesn’t even exist.

    As a universal, no, it doesn’t seem to exist. Obviously we should prefer to work together and be creative rather than destructive when we can, and foster peace, understanding, and good will in general. I like to think that i do that (and, oddly, i’m even armed sometimes when doing creative and cooperative things…despite someone above saying it’s impossible). Still…human nature being what it is: “If you would have peace, you must prepare for war.”

    If you always want to use ‘excess of force when interacting with those who would do me harm’, as you put it, then you have to make sure you’re ALWAYS better armed than the other guy.

    “Have”, not necessarily “use”. We all operate under restrictions and compromises. Just because someone might be better armed doesn’t mean i should make myself unarmed.

    An analogy: I carry a multi-tool. This tool is less efficient at most tasks than a full-size dedicated tool would be…still, it’s “good enough” to get the job done, usually, and has the benefit of always being on me. If i knew i was going to be getting into a gunfight with someone heavily armed, i would bring the best weapon i could…since i don’t know that, i must make do with my “multi-tool”. It does me no good to say, “Oh, well…i don’t have a full-sized screw-driver, so if i come across a loose screw (yes, please, capitalize on that, lol) i might as well not have anything.” That’s silly…better to have the multi-tool than nothing, no?

  133. sabrekgb says

    @138 Enlightenment Liberal

    Needless to say, i think gun rights are a good thing, but i also tend to agree with you regarding the likely constitutional ruling of such a class as you outlined. As a hedge against constitutionality, one could simply say that ownership and carry at home/on private land does not require said class, but public carry does.

    As i said, i could be supportive of such a law. I notice you didn’t answer my counter-question about then liberalizing the locations those licensees could carry, what are your thoughts on that?

    Does anyone else think that Enlightenment Liberal’s idea would be a sufficient compromise in this area?

  134. sabrekgb says

    @137/139 D.C. Sessions

    How many deaths per year do you consider an acceptable price for the exercise of your personal fetish everyone’s rights.

    >0

    Original intent is what today’s Supreme Court says it is, neither more nor less.

    True statement.

  135. D. C. Sessions says

    How many deaths per year do you consider an acceptable price for the exercise of your personal fetish everyone’s rights.

    >0

    And no upper bound. I think we’re long past the point of any fruitful discussion.

  136. says

    Zepplin before you start saying someone doesn’t understand history, you might want to pick up a book on the history of weapons. The discussion is about civilian arms, aside from guard (aka Knights or Samurai) which are law men which means that a pole-arm may be among the weapons they carry. But a pole-arm is a weapons that requires two free hands to use and is not easily concealed. Considering that in feudal Japan, Medieval Europe weapons were banned to the normal civilian, their most common weapons and still to this day is a common found item is a knife because it can be concealed. But if you had ever taken the time to find out what a dress sword was, you might have realized how wrong your statement is. In everyday life people were not allowed to wander around with spears, pole axes, or pole-arms in general. On the battlefield in number they are highly efficient, but we are talking personal protection. Their bulky, their size restricts their use in individual conflicts. Even civilian law enforcement in Europe favored shield and sword because it was efficient against most type of weapons but also allowed the most freedom of movement even in tight quarters and the sword and shield were easily readied in a hurry. The main reason the sword wasn’t common was its cost.

    I don’t think people should open carry an assault rifle, but more to the point most people I know that own one keep it locked away in a gun case at all times, until they take it out for shooting at a safe location. They might carry a pistol for protection, you don’t need to spray lots of bullets to stop an assailant. Your more likely to injure or kill many bi-standards defeating the purpose of protection.

  137. Menyambal says

    SabreKGB, nobody said that you were rational, just that you think that you are the only rational person here. Which is what every religious troll believes, and what you seem to believe. And yes, I mean “believe”. You are just as religious in your faith as the bible-thumping godbots.

    First, you speak of gun rights, and your duty to protect them. News flash for you: The Second Amendment has nothing at all to do with your right to own and carry a gun. It truly doesn’t. It addressed the regulation of state-armed militias back when standing armies were constitutionally prohibited (they still are, BTW, but you don’t care about that part of the Constitution, do you?).

    If you think that you have a Second Amendment right to carry a gun, you are mistaken, irrational, wrong, deluded, gullible or otherwise incorrect. It isn’t carrying a gun that makes you a person not to be argued with, it’s thinking that you have a Constitutional right to carry it that makes you bonkers. You are wrong, wrong, armed and wrong.

    A gun-ownership discussion cannot be carried out when one group is wearing tinfoil hats because Santa Claus told them it would keep them safe from space monsters. Yet that is where the discussion is: Gun owners frothing about rights and paranoia and magic, while sneering at the honest majority of sane citizens, science and the laws of this land.

    Seriously, SabreKGB, most of your “self-defense” arguments for packing a gun would be much better addressed by you wearing a bullet-resistant vest. But no, you have to have your gun, and damn everybody else (just like the religious folks (and yes God and guns go together)).

    Look, I carry knives, myself. Always a little Swiss Army with scissors and a toothpick, and often a clip knife hanging inside my front pocket for fast access. Both are tools, both have uses other than killing people, and both get left out of certain places. I don’t regard either one as a Second Amendment item … nothing is.

    SabreKGB, you have contradicted yourself several times, here, and advanced poor arguments while acting snotty. Look, women who are raped in situations where a having a gun would have helped are a small percentage, but far too frequent. Now, in your gun-toting world, what would prevent a rapist who is openly carrying a gun, legally and looking harmless, from getting the drop on a woman, disarming her and raping her? All it would take is a second out of sight, and a situation that could have been solved by a scream is now rape and possible homicide. And it is your fault, sabre. Think on that, will you?

  138. sabrekgb says

    I also think the same answer applies to:

    How many murderers should go free rather than an innocent man be convicted?

    How many people should die from preventable injuries rather than making helmet laws mandatory?

    How many drug dealers should go free rather than allow illegal searches?

    How many additional people is it ok to allow to die from terrorist attacks rather than curtail the liberties of the populace enough to prevent them all?

    To paraphrase someone else: The biggest question is between 0 and anything…the actual number is haggling over price.

  139. D. C. Sessions says

    That’s silly, and not how you live your life in other areas. You see people with deadly weapons all the time, knives, cars, bats, and don’t know exactly what is going to happen with them. Could that guy in the parking lot swerve into you? Could that guy playing baseball come bash you in the noggin’? All you have to go on is them saying they won’t.

    Well, that and:
    * There are other much more common uses of those tools (e.g. going to and from work.)
    * Most of those tools are much more difficult to use for killing (consider the recent mass-murder attempts using knives.)
    * Those that have equal or greater killing capacity to firearms (e.g. cars) put the aggressor at serious immediate risk himself.
    * Psychologically, when disposed to murder, people go for firearms even when other tools (e.g. lumber or pipes) are more readily available. Because we’re taught that that’s what they’re for.

    In witness whereof, we have many many times the number of drivers in the USA (much less other countries) than we do firearm owners. And yet intentional homicide by firearm is far more common than intentional vehicular homicide.

    Bet with the odds.

  140. D. C. Sessions says

    News flash for you: The Second Amendment has nothing at all to do with your right to own and carry a gun. It truly doesn’t.

    It does now, and will until there’s a change in the Constitution (either by amendment or a change in the membership of the Court.)

    It addressed the regulation of state-armed militias back when standing armies were constitutionally prohibited (they still are, BTW, but you don’t care about that part of the Constitution, do you?).

    Well, in particular the Southern militias that the white population maintained to prevent or put down revolts by the slaves that outnumbered them. It wasn’t an issue outside of the slave-holding States and even there there were plenty of laws (as there were at all times and everywhere including the so-called “wild west” until quite recently) against carrying firearms in town etc.

    People who seem to have gotten most of their American history from television seem to have missed the numerous Westerns where the sign at the edge of town warns arrivals to check their guns at the Marshal’s office.

  141. sabrekgb says

    @148 D.C. Sessions

    None of which is applicable to the point i was making. This wasn’t a “Cars are dangerous but you don’t want to ban cars!” argument, it was a very specific point i was making about the potential for harm and the level of trust given as a matter of course. Re-read the exchange if you missed it, and if you have a specific question, ask and i will address it.

  142. D. C. Sessions says

    News flash for you: The Second Amendment has nothing at all to do with your right to own and carry a gun. It truly doesn’t.

    Who said anything about banning cars?

    It takes a lot more trust (your word) to AssUMe that someone who is carrying a weapon with no other use in that situation than threatening and killing people is doing so for a benign reason than it does to judge that someone driving a car is doing so for a benign reason. Just going with the odds.

  143. D. C. Sessions says

    Crap: horked quote:

    This wasn’t a “Cars are dangerous but you don’t want to ban cars!” argument, it was a very specific point i was making about the potential for harm and the level of trust given as a matter of course.

    Who said anything about banning cars?

    It takes a lot more trust (your word) to AssUMe that someone who is carrying a weapon with no other use in that situation than threatening and killing people is doing so for a benign reason than it does to judge that someone driving a car is doing so for a benign reason. Just going with the odds.

  144. says

    DC Sessions 149: Yes the what people have interpreted the second amendment to mean is actually not what it states. But since the re interpreted meaning is the legal accepted definition it now means that. We have no need of local Militia but armed citizens is not necessarily always a bad thing.

    There is one thing that is common in all cases of genocide though, they were preceded by restricted access to guns. Sometimes armed citizens can keep the government from violently enforcing their will upon the people of their nation.

  145. zmidponk says

    sabrekgb #140:

    That’s silly, and not how you live your life in other areas. You see people with deadly weapons all the time, knives, cars, bats, and don’t know exactly what is going to happen with them.

    Those are not deadly weapons, those are implements that can be used as weapons. Cars are used as transportation and bats are used for hitting balls as part of certain sports. The only possible exception to that is someone with a knife, depending on the kind of knife. Knives, in general, are used for cutting. Some knives are specifically designed for cutting humans, so, if I see someone with one of them, I make the same assumption as I do as someone with a gun – because, in both cases, this is someone who I know has an implement designed specifically to maim and/or kill, unlike cars which are designed as methods of transportation, or bats which are designed to hit balls.

    Could that guy in the parking lot swerve into you? Could that guy playing baseball come bash you in the noggin’? All you have to go on is them saying they won’t. We live in a society in which the presumption is that certain rules of behavior will be followed and we assume that to be the case (despite not being psychic) until and unless evidence to the contrary is observed.

    …such as the evidence that someone is in possession of an implement designed to maim and/or kill.

    Right, but an unlikely and unrealistic example doesn’t really help.

    If open carry becomes as commonplace as you have said you want it to become, that is not unrealistic or unlikely, especially if the other people carrying openly do so for the same reasons you have said you do. Unless, of course, you’re saying it is simply not possible for someone to hear a gunshot, but not see the shot being fired, in which case, your position simply does not conform to reality.

    That is far from my utopia, and having a weapon does not mean drawing is the first or only response to threats. Indeed, it should only be done when necessary.

    In a situation where someone already has a gun out and has already used it on someone, if you can successfully protect others, which is one of your stated reasons for having a gun, without your own gun leaving its holster, why do you feel you need a gun to do this? It is obviously not needed.

    Plus, let’s keep in mind that even if existing gun laws were relaxed more, there will only (as it stands now…things are always subject to change in future) ever be a certain percentage of the population that carries in public. Through personal conviction against it, to a distaste or lack of proficiency in firearms, or simple apathy…the number will never approach 100%. I dare say it is unlikely to approach 10%, though i could be wrong.

    Hang on, further up the thread, you were saying how, if gun controls were relaxed, open carry would become so commonplace, my fear of guns would fade. Now you’re saying open carry wouldn’t become commonplace. Again, you appear to be contradicting yourself.

    No, you’re misunderstanding what i wrote. Protecting others is a legitimate reason to carry and to exercise deadly force. I was responding in that part you quoted to your particular (unrealistic) hypothetical…as in, if you don’t know what’s going on, you reserve judgement and do not fire on someone who is not threatening you. If you don’t know what is going on, then investigation is in order, and this is more the purview of police. So long as no one is being harmed, there’s no reason not to wait for them to come and sort it out, in your hypothetical example. Again, this is an unrealistic scenario…

    So leaving aside the rather bizarre statement that seems to suggest it’s unrealistic for someone with a gun to hear a gunshot but not actually see it, my original point was right – because the situation is confused, the shooter can exploit this to get away without being fired upon. Thanks for confirming that for me.

    As a universal, no, it doesn’t seem to exist. Obviously we should prefer to work together and be creative rather than destructive when we can, and foster peace, understanding, and good will in general. I like to think that i do that (and, oddly, i’m even armed sometimes when doing creative and cooperative things…despite someone above saying it’s impossible).

    Except that, to quote you, you ‘would prefer equality of force among those acting as equals’. When you’re going through life trying to assess how much force everyone has, and whether they’re therefore ‘equal’ to you or not, that doesn’t tend to foster peace, understanding and goodwill.

    Still…human nature being what it is: “If you would have peace, you must prepare for war.”

    There’s a difference between a country quietly safeguarding itself by being prepared for war and you openly walking around with a deadly weapon strapped to yourself. If you simply can’t understand that there are many people who find simply the presence of a deadly weapon aggressive and possibly provocative, given what a deadly weapon actually is, then there’s not much more to discuss.

    Have”, not necessarily “use”. We all operate under restrictions and compromises. Just because someone might be better armed doesn’t mean i should make myself unarmed.

    You’re obviously not following the discussion very well. My point has nothing to do with using the weapons in question – it, in fact, quite specifically has everything to do with simply having them. If you do not arm yourself as much as possible before you venture out, you might not have the ‘excess of force’ you say you want when dealing with those who might do you harm, as it is therefore possible they are the ones who have the ‘excess of force’. Of course, even if you do arm yourself as much as possible, it’s still possible they are better armed, but at least you’ve done what you can to follow the rule you have set out. As I said, I find this situation ludicrous and undesirable, so I simply fail to arm myself. If that means I fall foul of someone who decides, for whatever reason, to attack me, so be it – especially as being armed, no matter how heavily, is no guarantee of my safety anyway.

    An analogy: I carry a multi-tool. This tool is less efficient at most tasks than a full-size dedicated tool would be…still, it’s “good enough” to get the job done, usually, and has the benefit of always being on me. If i knew i was going to be getting into a gunfight with someone heavily armed, i would bring the best weapon i could…since i don’t know that, i must make do with my “multi-tool”. It does me no good to say, “Oh, well…i don’t have a full-sized screw-driver, so if i come across a loose screw (yes, please, capitalize on that, lol) i might as well not have anything.” That’s silly…better to have the multi-tool than nothing, no

    Except your gun isn’t a multi-tool. It is designed to kill and/or maim. It has no other function. Getting better armed is simply getting more and/or better guns which can do that more efficiently. As such, you’re actually taking the idea of a multi-tool and trying to use that to explain why you don’t take a bigger, better and more efficient dedicated ‘tool’, even though you’ve already indicated you like to have a bigger ‘tool’ than the other guy so that it’s more likely you get to use your ‘tool’ on him rather than him using his ‘tool’ on you.

  146. sabrekgb says

    @145 Menyambal

    SabreKGB, nobody said that you were rational, just that you think that you are the only rational person here. Which is what every religious troll believes, and what you seem to believe. And yes, I mean “believe”. You are just as religious in your faith as the bible-thumping godbots.

    Trickster Goddess @92 did. Not that she knows anything more about me than what you do from my posts. Still. And am irrational or just wrong? I mean, i think i’ve come across as pretty rational in this thread, even if you disagree with what i’ve said. I don’t say everyone that disagrees with me is irrational, though i do often think they’re wrong. Am i irrational because i disagree with you?

    You’re trying to associate me with religion and use that as an easy means of discrediting what i have to say. How about you stay on the issue of guns and leave religion out of it, as i have?

    News flash for you: The Second Amendment has nothing at all to do with your right to own and carry a gun.

    Bullshit. A cursory reading of the text itself proves this incorrect. Even leaving aside the current SCOTUS interpretation that tells you you are incorrect, it’s always been a ridiculous argument to try to say that “the right of the people to keep and bear arms” means anything other than the plain interpretation of what it says, preceding clause or no. Those who argue that it somehow only means the national guard are simply wrong both in letter and spirit….and silly. It’s an attempt to make an end-run around the amendment as opposed to repealing it.

    Argue repeal if you like, but don’t argue nonsense.

    Seriously, SabreKGB, most of your “self-defense” arguments for packing a gun would be much better addressed by you wearing a bullet-resistant vest. But no, you have to have your gun, and damn everybody else (just like the religious folks (and yes God and guns go together)).

    A vest would be a good addition, sure, if it was as convenient for everyday wear as a pistol is. It lacks some key characteristics of a firearm, though, that are helpful. Also, while i see the correlation between rednecks, god, and guns just like you do, i don’t think that a reading of Christianity actually supports the position that god and guns go together. I mean, mostly…the bible can be used to support anything, really.

    Also, not everyone is able to fit into your neat stereotype :)

    I don’t regard either one as a Second Amendment item … nothing is.

    Um…guns are. I mean, the amendment is pretty much about guns, so…yeah… You should be careful about calling others irrational if you’re going to say something like this. This statement is pretty damn clueless.

    you have contradicted yourself several times

    Such as…? I’m not perfect and do make mistakes (hell, sometimes i even change my mind), but do feel free to show the example you’re referring to.

    And it is your fault, sabre. Think on that, will you?

    Ok, i thought on it…and it’s bullshit. It’s immoral to take away the means of effective self defense from people. Doesn’t mean bad things wont still happen, but i see equalization of the ability to use force among equals as a good thing. If a rape would have been solved by a scream, then it still would. Plus, the responder now has the means to make his help effective.

    My fault? No. Don’t be that douchebag who takes away responsibility from those who actually perpetrate the actions.

  147. D. C. Sessions says

    There is one thing that is common in all cases of genocide though, they were preceded by restricted access to guns.

    Armenia.

    Sometimes armed citizens can keep the government from violently enforcing their will upon the people of their nation.

    How’s that working in the Middle East, where guns are more common than toothbrushes?

    Let’s get serious: small arms aren’t a serious threat to modern armies unless those armies handicap themselves. Badly. “Red Dawn” is not only fantasy, it’s bad fantasy.

    If the point of the Second Amendment is to enable armed insurrection (and you may well imagine that there is precisely zero evidence for that!) it would have been dealt with as either the 13th or 14th Amendment. “Never again!” anyone? Even the Roberts Court isn’t going anywhere near that notion, but if they did they’d be arguing for the right to make and place IEDs. Which they aren’t.

  148. says

    Sabrecgb:

    “you keep telling us that you are unusually rational. Calm. Level-headed.”
    I don’t explicitly say that, but i’m glad that you take that from my posts.

    Really? What could you possibly have meant by this?

    i am actually calmer and less prone to anger in traffic situations when armed. I know that i am responsible for my own self control and it is more important when i have a weapon. I also have less to fear from someone who would get out and want to “beat my ass” in a traffic incident, so there is no reason to get mentally worked up. I can’t speak for others’ mind states, but that is my experience.

    Or this?

    If that man is not acting aggressively, then you’re being overly fearful and that is one of the reasons for greater familiarity with guns in general. I have been asked to not be armed in a restaurant before, and i promptly left. They lost my business, but it was a very civil interaction, despite disagreement. Even if it had been uncivil, the man ordering me out has nothing to fear from me unless he physically attacks me.

    You claim that even if someone confronts you belligerently (not likely when you are obviously armed) that you would be civil and nice about it. And perhaps you would, but perhaps the next guy would not. The business proprietor has no way of knowing in advance.

    I did not say that I perceived you as unusually rational, only that you claim to be. And that your general approach is that of; “How fortunate all you people are, that I am here to educate you.” You’re setting yourself up as a model.

    You are asking people to make assumptions about other people’s rationality, without any evidence other than that they are carrying deadly weapons in daily situations. And at the same time, you make assumptions about other people’s level of gun-knowledge… as a group. But groups do not have knowledge; individuals do.

    For example I grew up in a house full of guns and have plenty of experience with them. Not expert level, but I am comfortable with guns generally. I also grew up around human beings, and that experience makes me cautious.

    As for the experiment, i actually think that i will, one of these weekends

    It might take longer than a weekend, because most people are not litterbugs. You only see someone drop litter once in a while. Let us know what happens after you ask a bunch of people to pick up their litter. Be sure to note if you were visibly armed when you made the requests. And what they look at.

  149. Menyambal says

    Thanks, SabreKGB, for reinforcing my case so nicely.

    You are the one who brough rationality into this, by saying that everyone was assuming gun owners are irrational. You then took someone’s comment about you, and you twisted it. I brought religion into this because most of the trolls we get at FTB are religious, anf you are acting just like them—it’s a familiar pattern, and you are fitting into it with your misunderstanding, your twisting, your snark and your pretense of calm rationality. It’s like there’s only one way to be wrong, bonkers wrong, and you are head down and locked in it.

    And why not bring religion into this? God and guns are a common combination, religion and rights, damnation and death. Are you saying that ALL the open-carry people are atheists? Or just most? Or none? I will bet you a dollar that the majority of the active gun-rights people in this country are Protestants, skewed toward Baptists, who profess a belief in God, with a large fraction who do not regularly attend church. And who hate some other group of people. And who are sports fans. Why ignore the correlations, SabreKGB?

    As for the Second Amendment, your response is exactly as expected, and shows no knowledge of the Constitution. In the body of tne Constitution, there is a phrase that makes it clear that the state is to supply arms to the militia. The amendment only makes it clear that citizens have the right to serve in the militia, and they, as citizens, have a right to a well-trained militia. Musketry requires a lot of close-order drill, and that is what “well-regulated” means. (I don’t care what the current Supreme Court says.)

    SabreKGB, you don’t notice the contradictions in your arguments, because you, like a religious person, don’t really think things through. You argue for your right to go where-ever you want, free of fear, but when other people say that they fear folks with guns, you tell them to go somewhere else.

  150. D. C. Sessions says

    God and guns are a common combination, religion and rights, damnation and death. Are you saying that ALL the open-carry people are atheists? Or just most? Or none? I will bet you a dollar that the majority of the active gun-rights people in this country are Protestants, skewed toward Baptists, who profess a belief in God, with a large fraction who do not regularly attend church. And who hate some other group of people.

    Emphasis added. Both of these young women grew up in the USA and have remarkably similar attitudes towards guns. There are, however, some differences:

    http://freethoughtblogs.com/pharyngula/files/2014/07/image1.jpg

  151. sabrekgb says

    @158 georgewiman

    Oh, no, i definitely think that i am probably more rational, calm, and level-headed that the average person, i just meant that i didn’t explicitly say so. You picked that out from my posts, and i’m fine with that, as i do actually think that.

    And while i do list education as one of my reasons for open carry, “How fortunate all you people are, that I am here to educate you.” is a mischaracterization. I’ll try to come off less snooty, if that’s how you’re perceiving me, and apologies.
    As for setting myself up as a model…well, yes. Is that a bad thing? If i am going to go out in public openly carrying when it is a relatively rare thing to do so, i do see it as a good thing to be as close to a model citizen as i can. Shouldn’t we all aspire to the condition of action whereby if everyone else did similar to you the world would be a better place? Seems reminiscent of the Categorical Imperative, no? In any case, it may be arrogant, but i do think that if others went armed as i do and acted as i do, the world would be a bit safer…this may be a bit of conceit, of course, but i don’t see it as harmful to admit it.

    You are asking people to make assumptions about other people’s rationality, without any evidence

    …just like they do every day. We give everyone the benefit of the doubt (as we have to, considering how many people we interact with daily), until evidence to the contrary. I’m saying that the fundamental calculus doesn’t change, you just have to mentally acknowledge that gun != violence.

  152. D. C. Sessions says

    A cursory reading of the text itself proves this incorrect. Even leaving aside the current SCOTUS interpretation that tells you you are incorrect, it’s always been a ridiculous argument to try to say that “the right of the people to keep and bear arms” means anything other than the plain interpretation of what it says, preceding clause or no. Those who argue that it somehow only means the national guard are simply wrong both in letter and spirit….and silly.

    Have you read the dissent in Heller? OK, never mind.

    How about this one, then: who, in the Second Amendment as you see it, was prevented from interfering with “the people” and their ownership of smoothbore muskets? (Yes, it’s a trick question.)

  153. says

    You’re just not getting it, sabrekgb. No matter how rational you are (or fancy yourself to be), you’re just one person. And the next person carrying a gun might be one of those people who completely melts down because a store ran out of the item that was on sale, or because the repair wasn’t covered by warranty, or because… well any damn reason at all. If we structure society so that a zen master like you can carry a gun everywhere, then violent idiots can, too.

    I look at societies where guns are ubiquitous and the results are not encouraging. Gun carrying, whether concealed or open, is one of the few areas where I agree with Ronald Reagan.

  154. D. C. Sessions says

    And the next person carrying a gun might be one of those people who completely melts down because a store ran out of the item that was on sale, or because the repair wasn’t covered by warranty, or because

    I believe that the currently popular circumstance is a perceived vehicular offence such as being cut off in traffic.

  155. sabrekgb says

    @159 Menyambal

    You are the one who brough rationality into this, by saying that everyone was assuming gun owners are irrational. You then took someone’s comment about you, and you twisted it. I brought religion into this because most of the trolls we get at FTB are religious, anf you are acting just like them—it’s a familiar pattern, and you are fitting into it with your misunderstanding, your twisting, your snark and your pretense of calm rationality. It’s like there’s only one way to be wrong, bonkers wrong, and you are head down and locked in it.

    Nah, dude…quit trying to shoehorn me in with others you dislike. My snark is very minimal in this thread. Go back and read my initial comment, which was in response (among other things) to Ed saying “we’re not dealing with reasonable people”. I try to respond to what people say, though i think some of my arguments are being misunderstood…if you think i’m twisting something, go ahead and post it.

    And why not bring religion into this? God and guns are a common combination, religion and rights, damnation and death. Are you saying that ALL the open-carry people are atheists? Or just most? Or none? I will bet you a dollar that the majority of the active gun-rights people in this country are Protestants, skewed toward Baptists, who profess a belief in God, with a large fraction who do not regularly attend church. And who hate some other group of people. And who are sports fans. Why ignore the correlations, SabreKGB?

    How about option 4: some. Why not bring religion into it? Or sports fans? Or racism? Well, because they haven’t been relevant to what we’ve been talking about. If you’ve got something specific you wanna address other then just general poisoning of the well, then go right ahead…but that’s not what you were doing, you were just trying to paint me (and those who carry weapons in public by extension) with that brush and then dismiss. Negative. Argue the issue. If you have a problem with religion, or racism, or sports fans, then argue against that, not against things that don’t necessarily flow from them (and for which counter-examples exist…*waves hands* I hate all three of those things…and like guns!).

    That sort of reasoning gets us gems like: Druggies rob people, lets make drugs illegal. Robbery is already illegal. People who are on drugs may rob people, but so do people who are not. Drugs and robbery, while there may be some correlation, are separate issues. Guns and religion, while there may be some correlation, are separate issues. It’s better to address the specific issue, than lump everything together. Come on, you should know this.

    As for the Second Amendment, your response is exactly as expected, and shows no knowledge of the Constitution. In the body of tne Constitution, there is a phrase that makes it clear that the state is to supply arms to the militia. The amendment only makes it clear that citizens have the right to serve in the militia, and they, as citizens, have a right to a well-trained militia. Musketry requires a lot of close-order drill, and that is what “well-regulated” means. (I don’t care what the current Supreme Court says.)

    We could argue as to why that’s wrong, and silly, but it doesn’t even matter for the purposes of this discussion since I can just say: SCOTUS says so. So, regardless, there is in fact a personal right to keep and bear arms.

    You argue for your right to go where-ever you want, free of fear, but when other people say that they fear folks with guns, you tell them to go somewhere else.

    No, that’s incorrect. You are trying to say that my refusal to accept the legitimacy of people unlawfully attacking or robbing someone in a “bad area” is the same as people being fearful of the mere presence of a weapon (in the possession of a person not threatening them or causing them harm). That’s just wrong…and you are trying to say I twist things? As Will Smith said, “Fear is a choice.”

  156. sabrekgb says

    Also, as an aside, there are several responses above that i would like to reply to but haven’t gotten around to yet. I apologize…it’s a lot of writing, being the primary dissenting voice at the moment, and i’m also trying to make dinner.

    This is always relevant: http://xkcd.com/386/

  157. EnlightenmentLiberal says

    @Menyambal

    First, you speak of gun rights, and your duty to protect them. News flash for you: The Second Amendment has nothing at all to do with your right to own and carry a gun. It truly doesn’t. It addressed the regulation of state-armed militias back when standing armies were constitutionally prohibited

    False. While I loathe Scalia, I suggest you go read his opinion in Heller vs DC. It addresses all of this and more. And read your Federalist Papers too. It cannot be more clear.

  158. says

    Sometimes armed citizens can keep the government from violently enforcing their will upon the people of their nation.

    Communist insurgents everywhere agree.

  159. D. C. Sessions says

    I suggest you go read his opinion in Heller vs DC.

    And don’t forget to read the dissent, too.

    It addresses all of this and more. And read your Federalist Papers too. It cannot be more clear.

    Don’t be coy — tell us where in the Federalist Papers the subject of and individual right to bear arms is discussed. (And by the way — just who is it that’s being prevented from infringing that purported individual right?)

  160. sabrekgb says

    @155 zmidponk

    Those are not deadly weapons, those are implements that can be used as weapons. Cars are used as transportation and bats are used for hitting balls as part of certain sports. The only possible exception to that is someone with a knife, depending on the kind of knife. Knives, in general, are used for cutting. Some knives are specifically designed for cutting humans, so, if I see someone with one of them, I make the same assumption as I do as someone with a gun – because, in both cases, this is someone who I know has an implement designed specifically to maim and/or kill, unlike cars which are designed as methods of transportation, or bats which are designed to hit balls.

    You are missing the point. Thing A is dangerous. You “trust” person 1 with thing A, despite never having met person 1 before, until and unless some evidence arises that person 1 will use thing A to harm you. Thing A could be a car, a knife, a bat, or a gun…the proposition holds for the first three in your everyday life, there is no reason why it can’t hold for the fourth.

    such as the evidence that someone is in possession of an implement designed to maim and/or kill.
    Possession without aggressive action is not sufficient. See: cops. If you want everyone disarmed, fair enough. But, regardless, there are millions of people who are armed each day without hurting anyone…so it’s clearly possible.

    In a situation where someone already has a gun out and has already used it on someone, if you can successfully protect others, which is one of your stated reasons for having a gun, without your own gun leaving its holster, why do you feel you need a gun to do this? It is obviously not needed.

    That’s not what i said. I said that there are more ways (in general) to deal with things than just drawing a gun, and that it should only be used when necessary. This is not an odd position, and i think pretty much everyone in this thread would agree. If, however, it is necessary, I’d rather have it there to draw than not.

    Hang on, further up the thread, you were saying how, if gun controls were relaxed, open carry would become so commonplace, my fear of guns would fade. Now you’re saying open carry wouldn’t become commonplace. Again, you appear to be contradicting yourself.

    Not a contradiction. Were the laws relaxed, i do think that more people would carry openly. I think that number would never be very high, but think about how many people you interact with in a given day, even if only just seeing them. I rarely see another open carrier where i live, there is a huge range between the current levels and my comment that i don’t think it would ever be higher than 10% (which is just a number i pulled out of my ass, i grant you). If even 1 out of a hundred carried, i would see it several times a day…and so would everyone else…leading to a normalization of it. Do you understand what i mean?

    Think about goth kids…they don’t make up a large percentage of the population, but you see them enough that it’s not remarkable. Same thing.

    because the situation is confused, the shooter can exploit this to get away without being fired upon

    Possibly. I fail to see how that matters for the discussion though, even if we grant your unrealistic scenario. Criminals (even shooters) can exploit confusion to get away now.

    Except that, to quote you, you ‘would prefer equality of force among those acting as equals’. When you’re going through life trying to assess how much force everyone has, and whether they’re therefore ‘equal’ to you or not, that doesn’t tend to foster peace, understanding and goodwill.

    You may be misunderstanding this genuinely, and not twisting it…i’ll give you the benefit of the doubt. I would prefer equality of force among equals…which is not the natural case. Some people are bigger and stronger than others. Some are old and frail, some are young and robust. We are, in this society, ostensibly all equals. Firearms do something to reduce those natural physical inequalities. They make the 80lb grandma the (more) equal of the 250lb lineman in the ability to harm each other. This should make the strong less apt to prey on the weak…in international relations we call it a balance of power. As the saying goes: “God made all men, Samuel Colt made them equal.” Yes, i am aware that both this quote and this concept are not perfect; reaction time, vision, skill with a weapon (and racism is a thing too, yes), but the point is that they are better than the alternative. Reducing the disparity of power is a good thing for an egalitarian society. Firearms are one way of doing this. We should not let “the perfect be the enemy of the good”.

    There’s a difference between a country quietly safeguarding itself by being prepared for war and you openly walking around with a deadly weapon strapped to yourself.

    What is the difference? I am not invading another country (or robbing a person). I am just quietly going about my business as usual, hoping for peace, but prepared for war. I think it’s very comparable…if you don’t, then tell me why, don’t just say if i can’t understand it then there’s not much to discuss. “If you don’t know why i’m mad, i’m not telling you.” isn’t a good way to argue.

    I simply fail to arm myself. If that means I fall foul of someone who decides, for whatever reason, to attack me, so be it – especially as being armed, no matter how heavily, is no guarantee of my safety anyway.

    Ok, cool…i respect your right to go out unarmed. You’re completely right in saying that my being armed is no guarantee of safety. Heck, given my stated intention to intervene in situations i could probably run away from, it may in fact reduce my safety. I’m ok with that, though. I just don’t want you to keep me from making that decision for myself.

    Except your gun isn’t a multi-tool. It is designed to kill and/or maim. It has no other function.

    Yes, guns are weapons, designed to effect deadly force. Most of them, any way. The one i carry is a compromise between effectiveness, size, cost, and several other factors. It is still a tool, useful for a multiplicity of situations…situations in which the use or threatened use of deadly force is important. A gun is capable of effecting deadly force, but it also gives the wielder the credible threat of deadly force. Often, this is enough to prevent the need for the former. The weapon i carry is a compromise, but it is a compromise that allows me to have it with me…the tool you have is always better than the one you don’t simply by virtue of being there.

    As such, you’re actually taking the idea of a multi-tool and trying to use that to explain why you don’t take a bigger, better and more efficient dedicated ‘tool’, even though you’ve already indicated you like to have a bigger ‘tool’ than the other guy so that it’s more likely you get to use your ‘tool’ on him rather than him using his ‘tool’ on you.

    Yes…because the tool you have is better than the one you don’t. The rest of this is verging back into penis territory. You knew what you were saying though… ;)

  161. D. C. Sessions says

    Thing A is dangerous. You “trust” person 1 with thing A, despite never having met person 1 before, until and unless some evidence arises that person 1 will use thing A to harm you.

    Betting the odds. If your “person 1″ is walking down the street with a creme pie in his hand, he might suddenly assault me with that creme pie. But I don’t worry about it because, (a) the chances are far greater that his intentions are gustatory rather than aggressive, and (b) there are far worse things to worry about than being assaulted with a creme pie.

    Neither reason for complacence applies to someone strolling down the street bearing firearms.

    Thing A could be a car, a knife, a bat, or a gun…the proposition holds for the first three in your everyday life, there is no reason why it can’t hold for the fourth.

    Except that the first three are almost always used for other purposes than killing and are at most poorly suited to homicide. Not so the fourth. Which rather narrows the range of both intentions and capabilities, and thus the contingencies that a rational person needs to consider.

  162. sabrekgb says

    @172 D.C. Sessions

    I picked things that weren’t cream pies specifically because they have the capacity to cause death and grievous bodily harm. Cars are hella dangerous, killing more people in absolute numbers than guns (even including gun suicides, which aren’t relevant for this discussion), and only require a second’s inattention to accidentally kill someone. You still “trust” others with them.

    The point of this tangent was saying above that people can’t be trusted with guns because they can kill people. My counter-point was that we trust people with potential deadly force all the time. Unless they are acting in a way that shows something is amiss, we think nothing of it. We aren’t terrified of the guy going opposite direction with a car on a road, despite knowing nothing about his rationality (or even if he’s actually licensed…or a murderer on the loose!) because the way we operate is to give people the benefit of the doubt sans evidence contrary.

    It doesn’t matter that the thing in question has other purposes…it can still be dangerous, but we trust people not to do something to harm us with it randomly. You’re also missing the point that a gun does have other purposes than to kill you for no reason…it can be used defensively.

  163. throwaway, never proofreads, every post a gamble says

    You’re also missing the point that a gun does have other purposes than to kill you for no reason…it can be used defensively.

    Against whom?

  164. throwaway, never proofreads, every post a gamble says

    Against an attacker.

    Why wouldn’t you just run away? Or use mace? TASER? Why is a gun necessary for the defense?

  165. zmidponk says

    You are missing the point. Thing A is dangerous. You “trust” person 1 with thing A, despite never having met person 1 before, until and unless some evidence arises that person 1 will use thing A to harm you. Thing A could be a car, a knife, a bat, or a gun…the proposition holds for the first three in your everyday life, there is no reason why it can’t hold for the fourth.

    Because thing 4 is specifically designed to maim and/or kill. You even admit this, and admit the only reason you arm yourself is so that you have the ability to maim and/or kill, should the need arise. I am not missing your point, you appear to simply be unable to grasp the idea that there might be a legitimate reason to be very cautious around people who have taken the effort to ensure they are in possession of an implement that is designed for the purpose of maiming and/or killing, especially if that’s all you know about them. This is something that, to me, is so blindingly obvious, it’s unreal, yet you seem to be unable to grasp it, even when it’s explicitly and repeatedly explained to you.

    Possession without aggressive action is not sufficient. See: cops. If you want everyone disarmed, fair enough. But, regardless, there are millions of people who are armed each day without hurting anyone…so it’s clearly possible.

    And yet again you’re not getting that, without psychic powers, it’s impossible to tell if any individual person who is openly displaying a gun is one of these people who are armed, but will never hurt anyone. Or maybe that they will simply not hurt anyone today. Tomorrow, however…

    That’s not what i said. I said that there are more ways (in general) to deal with things than just drawing a gun, and that it should only be used when necessary. This is not an odd position, and i think pretty much everyone in this thread would agree.

    Well, then you’re talking about generalities that simply do not apply here. So what you’re saying contradicts the idea you need to have a gun to protect others, is entirely irrelevant to what is being discussed here, or possibly simply wrong. Or any combination of these.

    If, however, it is necessary, I’d rather have it there to draw than not.

    So, in a situation where someone has just taken out his own gun and shot someone else, would you draw yours? Yes or no? If yes, then what I’ve said previously applies completely. If no, then, given that it’s hard to really come up with a more explicit scenario where you would possibly need a gun to protect others, one of your stated reasons for having a gun, this would appear to indicate you don’t actually need a gun to do this.

    Not a contradiction. Were the laws relaxed, i do think that more people would carry openly. I think that number would never be very high, but think about how many people you interact with in a given day, even if only just seeing them. I rarely see another open carrier where i live, there is a huge range between the current levels and my comment that i don’t think it would ever be higher than 10% (which is just a number i pulled out of my ass, i grant you). If even 1 out of a hundred carried, i would see it several times a day…and so would everyone else…leading to a normalization of it. Do you understand what i mean?

    Yes. However, I severely doubt seeing 1 in a hundred people would be commonplace enough for any ‘normalization’ to occur, at least, not with me. As you were talking about what I would think and/or feel, I can therefore be pretty confident in saying you’re simply wrong.

    Think about goth kids…they don’t make up a large percentage of the population, but you see them enough that it’s not remarkable. Same thing.

    Not really – goth kids haven’t taken the trouble to make sure they have devices designed to kill and/or maim.

    Possibly. I fail to see how that matters for the discussion though, even if we grant your unrealistic scenario. Criminals (even shooters) can exploit confusion to get away now.

    Then my original point is merely underlined – the dissuading effect you were talking about is limited even now. With the further confusion that could very easily be caused by rampant open carrying, that simply enhanced that limitation.

    You may be misunderstanding this genuinely, and not twisting it…i’ll give you the benefit of the doubt. I would prefer equality of force among equals…which is not the natural case. Some people are bigger and stronger than others. Some are old and frail, some are young and robust. We are, in this society, ostensibly all equals. Firearms do something to reduce those natural physical inequalities. They make the 80lb grandma the (more) equal of the 250lb lineman in the ability to harm each other. This should make the strong less apt to prey on the weak…in international relations we call it a balance of power. As the saying goes: “God made all men, Samuel Colt made them equal.” Yes, i am aware that both this quote and this concept are not perfect; reaction time, vision, skill with a weapon (and racism is a thing too, yes), but the point is that they are better than the alternative. Reducing the disparity of power is a good thing for an egalitarian society. Firearms are one way of doing this. We should not let “the perfect be the enemy of the good”.

    If you’re this focused on who can harm who, then your ignorance of the fact that people can and do willingly cooperate with each other without threat of force begins to make more sense.

    What is the difference? I am not invading another country (or robbing a person). I am just quietly going about my business as usual, hoping for peace, but prepared for war. I think it’s very comparable…if you don’t, then tell me why, don’t just say if i can’t understand it then there’s not much to discuss. “If you don’t know why i’m mad, i’m not telling you.” isn’t a good way to argue.

    Except I have told you. Quite explicitly. In the very sentence following the part you quoted. Unless you really don’t get that deadly weapons are things that are specifically designed to kill and/or maim, despite the multiple times I have pointed this out?

    Ok, cool…i respect your right to go out unarmed. You’re completely right in saying that my being armed is no guarantee of safety. Heck, given my stated intention to intervene in situations i could probably run away from, it may in fact reduce my safety. I’m ok with that, though. I just don’t want you to keep me from making that decision for myself.

    And what if your decision has a direct or indirect negative consequence for my safety, for example, in a situation you decide to intervene in, being one of the bystanders that ends up with a bullet in them? Do I still not get a say then?

    Yes, guns are weapons, designed to effect deadly force. Most of them, any way. The one i carry is a compromise between effectiveness, size, cost, and several other factors. It is still a tool, useful for a multiplicity of situations…situations in which the use or threatened use of deadly force is important. A gun is capable of effecting deadly force, but it also gives the wielder the credible threat of deadly force. Often, this is enough to prevent the need for the former. The weapon i carry is a compromise, but it is a compromise that allows me to have it with me…the tool you have is always better than the one you don’t simply by virtue of being there.

    Except, to follow the rule you have set out, you must arm yourself as heavily as possible – which leads right back to the ‘full tactical gear and festooned with weapons’ scenario. Are you admitting this rule is wrong, then?

    Yes…because the tool you have is better than the one you don’t. The rest of this is verging back into penis territory. You knew what you were saying though… ;)

    Hey, you were the one that starting comparing guns with tools, not I.

  166. sabrekgb says

    @176 throwaway

    You may want to read above. I know it’s 175~ish posts, but still.

    I can run away and have a gun, the one does not preclude the other. I will likely choose not to run, but i don’t begrudge anyone taking this potentially safer option.

    Why a gun specifically? Well, as many above have stated, it’s simply better at the purpose. Based on my own compromises in carry, i’m limited to probably one self-defense weapon off-duty. A taser is a single shot weapon with limited range and reasonable failure rate… the firearm that i carry has 16 rounds of ammunition and it is much cheaper and easier to maintain and be proficient with, and is more accurate. It also is the most powerful deterrent of the things you mentioned.

    Given that, i choose the firearm as my carry weapon. Your mileage may vary.

  167. EnlightenmentLiberal says

    And don’t forget to read the dissent, too.

    I did. It was pitiful. Breyer’s dissent was especially troubling. “Interest balancing” my ass. Scalia is completely on the ball when he notes that Breyer’s kind of reasoning would gut all constitutional protections altogether. I really feel the need to quote Scalia verbatim here (might as well because it’s one of the exceedingly rare times he’s correct):

    http://www.law.cornell.edu/supct/html/07-290.ZO.html

    We know of no other enumerated constitutional right whose core protection has been subjected to a freestanding “interest-balancing” approach. The very enumeration of the right takes out of the hands of government—even the Third Branch of Government—the power to decide on a case-by-case basis whether the right is really worth insisting upon. A constitutional guarantee subject to future judges’ assessments of its usefulness is no constitutional guarantee at all. Constitutional rights are enshrined with the scope they were understood to have when the people adopted them, whether or not future legislatures or (yes) even future judges think that scope too broad. We would notapply an “interest-balancing” approach to the prohibition of a peaceful neo-Nazi march through Skokie. See National Socialist Party of America v. Skokie, 432 U. S. 43 (1977) (per curiam). The First Amendment contains the freedom-of-speech guarantee that the people ratified, which included exceptions for obscenity, libel, and disclosure of state secrets, but not for the expression of extremely unpopular and wrong-headed views. The Second Amendment is no different. Like the First, it is the very product of an interest-balancing by the people—which Justice Breyer would now conduct for them anew. And whatever else it leaves to future evaluation, it surely elevates above all other interests the right of law-abiding, responsible citizens to use arms in defense of hearth and home.

    (And by the way — just who is it that’s being prevented from infringing that purported individual right?)

    The federal government, of course. At the time, most of the concern was about the possible tyrranny of the new federal government. Most took it as a given that individual states would not abridge fundamental rights. The concern was over the new document granting new powers to a new government.

    So, originally it was only a limitation against the federal government. Of course, I hope you realize though that this fundamentally changed with the passing of the fourteenth amendment.

    Don’t be coy — tell us where in the Federalist Papers the subject of and individual right to bear arms is discussed.

    Number 29 and 46. If I remember correctly, another paper touches on gun rights too. I shouldn’t have to do your homework for you.
    http://www.guncite.com/gc2ndpur.html

    PS: I offer no guarantees as to the accuracy of the rest of the citations at the above link. It’s just the first hit on google, and I recognize the Federalist quotes contained therein, having read them before.

  168. throwaway, never proofreads, every post a gamble says

    I can run away and have a gun, the one does not preclude the other. I will likely choose not to run, but i don’t begrudge anyone taking this potentially safer option.

    You might have answered this, but what weapon must an attacker possess which means you can’t run away from them, but must instead resort to a firearm?

  169. A. Noyd says

    When you use a gun to defend yourself, it doesn’t maim or kill. Instead, it shoots bubblegum ropes that magically tie up your assailant till the cops come. So, see, a gun totally has more than one purpose.

  170. says

    Someone else may have mentioned this – I try to read all the posts but may have missed one – but cops are not an example of benevolent gun-carrying. Or even competent gun-carrying. Or Tazer carrying, or mace-carrying or nightstick-carrying. Or law-wielding. Good cops abound and I know several personally, but generally speaking ordinary citizens are justified in exercising caution when interacting with cops.

  171. says

    “The fuck…? I don’t even know what you mean here,”

    Try having someone read it to you, slowly, and explain as they read it to you, why you’re a fucking idiot.

    You say guns are an equalizer despite the fact that most people are not going to be getting the least bit romantic with anyone carrying a gun. So what are the little ladies gonna do, bro, stuff a Lady Glock up their hoohah? I mean, really, WHEN are those gunz gonna be handy?

    “There is one thing that is common in all cases of genocide though, they were preceded by restricted access to guns.”

    Citations required–one for each instance which you have in mind. Pro-tip: don’t start with Hitler and the Jews. German firearms laws became pretty restrictive under the Weimar Republic. Jews weren’t huge on 2nd Amendment rights (not that they applied in Germany, anyway). Of the six million or so jews murdered during the “Final Solution” about 90% were from countries other than Germany. Use additional sheets of paper, if necessary.

    And, of course you refuse to furnish proof that you are as well trained as a LEO, for the best reason there is–you don’t have any. Thanks for playing; fuck off, troll

  172. sabrekgb says

    @democommie

    Try having someone read it to you, slowly, and explain as they read it to you, why you’re a fucking idiot.

    Being armed, it must be my fault that we can’t have a civil conversation, according to Pen @ 79.

    And, of course you refuse to furnish proof that you are as well trained as a LEO, for the best reason there is–you don’t have any. Thanks for playing; fuck off, troll

    Yup, the same reason you won’t post your social security card for everyone to see…you don’t have one!

    Yeah, i’m clearly a troll. Eat a dick, democommie.

    @182 georgewiman

    Agreed, i just use that as a data point because the vast majority of gun control suggestions/support/laws exempt LEOs. If someone is arguing against guns, then frequently their argument is against all guns and “except for police” is added at the end with no rhyme or reason. I can understand arguments against all guns (not to say agree), but not argument against all guns except for police. The second one seems to have some internal contradictions that are usually glossed over.

    @180 throwaway

    I’m not sure if that is asked at me as a personal question or as a more general one. In any case: a projectile weapon of some sort, a weapon which can be thrown, any weapon if that person is faster than me, or any weapon if i am in a situation that precludes running, such as confined quarters, being belted into a parked car, having others with me who are slower or unable to run, etc. This also does not take into account intervening on behalf of a third party.

    I will also add that having the ability to run does not mean i will take that option. If i am being attacked, there is a potential that person would attack someone else if i run away. An argument could be made against just kicking the can down the road to the next guy, who may be less able to deal with it. All of this is situation and detail dependent.

  173. sabrekgb says

    @177 zmidponk

    Because thing 4 is specifically designed to maim and/or kill. You even admit this, and admit the only reason you arm yourself is so that you have the ability to maim and/or kill, should the need arise.

    Yes, but other things have the ability to as well. Things can exercise deadly force, whether that is their primary purpose or not, and we trust people to not do that unless there is just cause. Yes, that is the purpose of a weapon, but that’s not a bad thing when such action is required.

    I am not missing your point, you appear to simply be unable to grasp the idea that there might be a legitimate reason to be very cautious around people who have taken the effort to ensure they are in possession of an implement that is designed for the purpose of maiming and/or killing, especially if that’s all you know about them.

    I really think you are. Cautious in as much as you should think “Hmm, probably not a good idea to try and assault that person.” which you shouldn’t be intending on doing anyway, not “OMG, run!” If he’s acting normally, you probably should too.

    And yet again you’re not getting that, without psychic powers, it’s impossible to tell if any individual person who is openly displaying a gun is one of these people who are armed, but will never hurt anyone. Or maybe that they will simply not hurt anyone today. Tomorrow, however…

    And without psychic powers it’s impossible to tell that about anyone in any circumstance ever…even when they have one of those other things capable of causing deadly harm. Barring evidence contrary, we just run with it and assume they won’t, the same thing can be true of guns; hence, my open carry…an effort to show people that nice individuals do indeed carry weapons.

    Yes. However, I severely doubt seeing 1 in a hundred people would be commonplace enough for any ‘normalization’ to occur, at least, not with me. As you were talking about what I would think and/or feel, I can therefore be pretty confident in saying you’re simply wrong.

    I think you might be minimizing the effect or the sheer number of people you see in a day. Even if you saw only one person armed a day, i still think it would have an effect. Maybe not, though, and i’ll bow to your self-knowledge on this point.

    Not really – goth kids haven’t taken the trouble to make sure they have devices designed to kill and/or maim.

    Just drinking deep the darkness that envelops their soul.

    If you’re this focused on who can harm who, then your ignorance of the fact that people can and do willingly cooperate with each other without threat of force begins to make more sense.

    Thinking about something sometime does not mean someone is focused solely on it. I’ve thought a lot about a lot of other things…don’t be disingenuous and suggest that having a thought out position on something like that is a bad thing. Is having an understanding of historical race dynamics and inequalities in the U.S. a sign that someone thinks races can’t work together?

    Of course people cooperate. People who have physical power disparities, even. It’s a great thing. Hell, even I cooperate. That doesn’t take away the good of more equality of physical power among equals. They are in no way mutually exclusive.

    Unless you really don’t get that deadly weapons are things that are specifically designed to kill and/or maim, despite the multiple times I have pointed this out?

    Yes, they are…but…so? A military (prepare for war) is a thing designed to kill also. You’re saying that weapons are designed to kill/maim as if you’re making anything other than a tautological point… Of course they are…and….? What is the next step in that line of reasoning? You’re not stating a premise, or not coming to an actual conclusion, i’m not sure which.

    Weapons in general and firearms (most of them) are designed to effect deadly force…this is not a bad thing in and of itself, it all depends on the circumstances in which that deadly force is used. Stopping a murder with a gun is still potentially killing someone, but it is also a good thing. If you are expecting me to make the mental jump that weapons = kill, therefor bad…that’s where you lose me, and you didn’t even say that explicitly.

    I may be misinterpreting what you’re saying, but i can’t think of what else you might mean…i really think you have unstated premises. Correct me if i am wrong.

    And what if your decision has a direct or indirect negative consequence for my safety, for example, in a situation you decide to intervene in, being one of the bystanders that ends up with a bullet in them? Do I still not get a say then?

    No. A case like that might very well lead to me being prosecuted for manslaughter. That would suck all around, and seems like a case for the courts to handle…we’d see what a jury decides. Remember, i never said bad stuff wouldn’t still happen…i do think that the overall amount of bad stuff would be reduced though. Externalities and unintended consequences abound in a complex society like ours. That potential, while unfortunate and which would be minimized as best i could, is not sufficient for the actual curtailment of my rights.

    Also, keep in mind that this is a potential with the police…in which case you definitely don’t get a say and they certainly won’t be punished for the crossfire. Great case in point, the NYC shooting in front of the Empire state building where police shot 9 bystanders trying to hit a killer. Think they’ll be punished substantially?

    Except, to follow the rule you have set out, you must arm yourself as heavily as possible

    Sort of a rule of thumb…maybe a rule of wrist. Again, any gun is better than no gun…the weapon i have is better than the one i don’t. A gun is better than a knife (21 ft rule notwithstanding). And, of course, we all make compromises with our choices…mine in regards to carry is that my particular weapon is sufficient for my purposes and portable enough to have on me fairly constantly.

    We don’t actually see this arms race you are worried about (I would argue that police militarization is not primarily rooted in it, but that would be a separate discussion).

  174. Tsu Dho Nimh says

    Look dude … you feel all confident carrying your whatever it is you carry because in your heart you think you are calm and self-controlled and don’t mean to use it until provoked by certain special circumstances you keep firmly in mind as you wander through the aisles of Target, picking up sheets and towels, or sit there in Chili’s, snacking on cholesterol.

    I grew up in an area where guns were used, and used often, for their designed purpose of killing creatures. I was taught to never even pick one up unless I meant to use it. They were carried to and from hunting unloaded, safely locked in the trunk of a car, or in a gun case. They were stored unloaded.

    I spent part of my working life in hospitals helping fix the end results of using guns – mostly blood bank, sometimes ER. I’ve been “friendly fired” on by idiots who didn’t realize or perhaps didn’t care that ricochets happen. I’ve been between cops and robbers in a firefight in the only sane places I could find, flat on the floor of my rental car in the parking lot. Had I been armed, I would still have been kissing the floor mat until the shooting stopped. My daddy didn’t raise fools.

    I’ve rehabbed houses in areas where I WAS openly carrying a loaded M1911 to encourage the transients to stay in the alley and out of my house. If I had felt threatened enough to unholster it, it would have been used immediately.

    When I see someone carrying a gun outside the areas where carrying a gun means you intend to use it soon in a socially acceptable purpose – hunting, hunting camp, parking lot of a shooting range, coming and going from the gunsmith’s – I don’t automatically think, “Awwww, he’s asserting his Constitutional rights, let me go chat him up.”

    I’m not a mind reader, able to pick up the benevolent vibes you think you are exuding. my early training and life experience kicks in and in my mind you plan to use that gun.

    To me, you are a threat to be avoided or eliminated.

  175. says

    @76:

    “And you managed to come home alive, even though it’s almost certain you weren’t carrying a weapon, legally, anywhere in Europe?

    Indeed, i’m as surprised as you!”

    And yet you’re convinced that the country you live in is too fucking dangerous to live in, unless you’re carrying a gun at all times? Wow, get some fucking HELP!

    The reason that the U.S. is more dangerous than Europe, in terms of being attacked by gunzwieldin’moronz, is because they have so fucking few of them by comparison.

    And thanks for confirming, yet again, that you’re a bloviating piece-of-shit who doesn’t have or intend to get that training that you claim to have.

  176. says

    Wow SabreKGB I put it right in front of you and you still didn’t see it. If even law-abiding citizens are justified in exercising extra caution when interacting with armed police, why would they not have reason to be even more careful when interacting with an armed stranger? Whether the manager of a Starbucks or a target or just any random person, you are justified in giving that person a wide berth.

    Some cops are well worth staying away from. The percentage is high enough that legal advice abounds for how to interact with police. Now keep the gun, but substitute a random stranger for the cop who was carrying it. Still feel like being the low-paid assistant manager who must ask him to leave the store? Roll the dice, and eventually, double snake-eyes!

    Your assurances about your good character mean little to people who don’t know you, and nothing as applied to a third person carrying a gun.

  177. says

    I don’t explicitly say that…

    Yes, you did, starting in comment #30. So now, on top of all your other unreasonable BS, you’re trying to lie about your own words.

    …what we must do is ensure that in the process of doing our best to reduce the “doofus” factor, we don’t restrict the rights of others.

    Um, no, preventing people from harming other people through incompetence is more important than your convenience. Several orders of magnitude more important. You gun-toters are not the only people with rights at stake here — other people have a right to be free of threats and violence in their daily lives, and to have a better system of justice than a bunch of undisciplined self-important yahoos who think their convenience is the only right anyone has.

    …i see equalization of the ability to use force among equals as a good thing.

    Guns don’t “equalize the ability to use force;” they merely give the advantage to the person who draws his gun first. And that would not be the law-abiding citizen; it would be the criminal, or the most hot-headed, thin-skinned or unstable party in the dispute. And once that person draws his gun, his optins are narrowed, not expanded: either he shoots to kill, or he backs down and looks utterly ridiculous, and possibly exposes himself to violent retaliation from the people he’d tried to threaten.

    The fact that you’re still basing any of your arguments on pure fantasies like this “great equalizer” crap, and ignoring what really happens in the real world, once again shows how laughably unreasonable you are.

    We don’t actually see this arms race you are worried about…

    Yes, you blithering ignoramus, we do see it. It’s in those news sources you keep on ignoring.

  178. D. C. Sessions says

    Guns don’t “equalize the ability to use force;” they merely give the advantage to the person who draws his gun first. And that would not be the law-abiding citizen; it would be the criminal, or the most hot-headed, thin-skinned or unstable party in the dispute. And once that person draws his gun, his optins are narrowed, not expanded: either he shoots to kill, or he backs down and looks utterly ridiculous, and possibly exposes himself to violent retaliation from the people he’d tried to threaten.

    Once he draws that gun, he’d damned well better shoot, because the otherwise peace-loving dude he drew on is going to be going for a survival strategy. Which, given that some yahoo just drew on him may well not involve “hey, we’re just talking.” Because that already failed.

    Which leaves the dude he drew on two remaining options:
    1) Get something large and massive between us, quick! or
    2) Take that SOB down before he kills me. I may get a hole or three punched in me, but if I don’t try I just give him time to aim for a sure-thing kill.

    Large dense objects conveniently located are not all that common, especially when you consider that ducking around a corner doesn’t really solve the problem [1]. Which means that when a Zimmerman wannabe reaches anywhere near his gun, I’m going for a tackle and you bet your sweet bippy that I’ll be pounding his head into concrete until he stops breathing. Deal with the consequences later, because at the moment “later” is sounding real, real good.

    So: confronted with some would-be Wyatt Earp, I’m going to immediately go into full “him or me” and do my best to incapacitate or kill him. And because of that, his best option once he reaches anywhere near that gun is to kill me as fast as he can.

    So much for options.

    [1] The Lynyrd Skynyrd song, “give me three steps” is from an actual event. Not a reliable plan.

  179. says

    We know of no other enumerated constitutional right whose core protection has been subjected to a freestanding “interest-balancing” approach.

    Scalia is a fucking liar. ALL of the rights in the Constitution are subject, not only to “interest-balancing,” but to “rights balancing” as well. This is why, for example, freedom of speech does not include slander/libel, defamation, or incitement to riot, even though no such exceptions are stated in the Constitution itself.

    Furthermore, unlike the First, the Second Amendment has a significant bit of “interest-balancing” explicitly written into it: the right to keep and bear arms is explicitly set forth as subordinate to the need for a well-regulated militia to guarantee the security of a free state.

  180. sabrekgb says

    @187 Tsu Dho Nimh

    I was taught to never even pick one up unless I meant to use it.

    I’ve rehabbed houses in areas where I WAS openly carrying a loaded M1911 to encourage the transients to stay in the alley and out of my house.

    When I see someone carrying a gun … in my mind you plan to use that gun.

    Pardon me, but that’s some hypocrisy you’ve got there.

  181. sabrekgb says

    @188 democommie

    The reason that the U.S. is more dangerous than Europe, in terms of being attacked by gunzwieldin’moronz, is because they have so fucking few of them by comparison.

    Really? I thought it was because of the over-abundance of “Z”s.

  182. says

    My counter-point was that we trust people with potential deadly force all the time.

    This sentence shows the gun-nuts’ fundamental hypocrisy — this fool is insisting that he’s entitled to our trust, while carrying a gun because he refuses to trust anyone else to be any better than an animal. This is the same mindset that drives nearly all forms of ethnic bigotry and supremacy; and it proves once again that such radical blowhard gun-enthusiasts cannot be trusted.

  183. D. C. Sessions says

    This sentence shows the gun-nuts’ fundamental hypocrisy

    Do you think that the hypocrisy is actually worse than the sophistry? Please note that he consistently avoids addressing the fact that the overwhelming majority of people who use cars, knives, and baseball bats use them for purposes other than mayhem (which are the purposes that they are designed for) and then asks us to “trust” people who carry about objects whose designed and only purpose is mayhem to not use them for that purpose.

  184. says

    I’ve rehabbed houses in areas where I WAS openly carrying a loaded M1911 to encourage the transients to stay in the alley and out of my house.

    In that instance, you are on private property, with the owner’s consent, for a specific purpose, and you are using a gun ONLY to deter unlawful entry by people who CLEARLY have no business entering that property. And since that property is not open to the general public, like a functioning restaurant, it’s easy for you to tell, in an instant, who is or is not a potential threat. That’s not the same as open-carry by a long shot.

  185. says

    Do you think that the hypocrisy is actually worse than the sophistry?

    I never said that.

    Please note that he consistently avoids addressing…

    Don’t take it personally; he’s avoided most of my points too.

  186. Tsu Dho Nimh says

    I was taught to never even pick one up unless I meant to use it.

    I’ve rehabbed houses in areas where I WAS openly carrying a loaded M1911 to encourage the transients to stay in the alley and out of my house.

    Pardon me, but that’s some hypocrisy you’ve got there.

    Hypocrisy? Not at all … when I retrieved the pistol from its storage place, I had already decided that the risks** of working in that area were high enough that I might need to get serious about self defense. I definitely would have used it if it became necessary, it’s that the need/opportunity didn’t arise.

    ** In addition to the high number of mentally ill alley residents and casual thieves looking for tools, there had been a series of assaults on women working alone, or living alone, done by someone who was familiar with the area and apparently studying victoms before attacking. He approached me several months after the rehab and was asking questions about who lived in the house … I lied and invented three husky male tenants. Saw his picture in the paper about a month after that and recognized the arrested person as the man who had been asking about my tenants.

  187. D. C. Sessions says

    Do you think that the hypocrisy is actually worse than the sophistry?

    I never said that.

    Didn’t mean to suggest that you had. They’re obviously both present, just wondering how you see the relative severity.

    A casual social inquiry, if you will.

  188. Tsu Dho Nimh says

    @197 … Exactly! I was working on my house, on my land, in what’s fab and trendy now, but run down and scary then.

    I’m not about to go pistol-packing through Roxbury, Watts, Anacostia or Chicago’s East Side. I’ve been in all of them, and the folks were pretty friendly.

  189. says

    @201:

    You can’t be serious!

    I have it on a gunzloon’z authority that Roxbury is far too dangerous to walk your dog in, unless you got oneathem 1911 handcannonz.

  190. says

    D.C., It’s kinda hard to judge the “relative severity” of this guy’s fallacies and dishonesty, when they’re all lumped together in one big hot incoherent mess. Once the blender’s been turned on, there’s no point in arguing which ingredient tastes worst.

  191. EnlightenmentLiberal says

    @Raging Bee

    Scalia is a fucking liar. ALL of the rights in the Constitution are subject, not only to “interest-balancing,” but to “rights balancing” as well. This is why, for example, freedom of speech does not include slander/libel, defamation, or incitement to riot, even though no such exceptions are stated in the Constitution itself.

    Strongly disagreed for every reason Scalia said. Your thinking is a rather naive kind of jurisprudence, almost as bad as Scalia’s “originalism”.

    For example, no one at the time of the passing of the second amendment understood it to be an absolute right to carry guns anywhere, for example into court houses, into prison (!), etc. Like the rest of the bill of rights, they were merely codifying a largely pre-existing right as they understood it in the context of English common law.

    Similarly, libel and slander were strongly established parts of English common law, and everyone understood for those to not be covered by the first amendment.

    It was understood that the first amendment protects speech which is merely offensive. I hold that there is no example whatsoever where the congress or the court should be able to decide that the mere offensiveness of some speech is enough to censor it. “I might disagree with what you have to say, but I will fight to the death for your right to say it.”

    As Scalia said, your rather idiotic and naive jurisprudence would gut all constitutional protections altogether. As Scalia said, the very purpose of constitutional law is to take certain interest-balancing questions out of the hands of congress and the courts. Otherwise, the protections would be meaningless. They would be worse than mere suggestions if you could interest-balance them away.

    Your “rights balancing” argument is similarly naive for similar reasons. Are you going to argue that the right to be happy and safe trumps the right to have guns? Couldn’t someone make the same argument against free speech? “Blasphemy makes me so outraged – I cannot be happy while I hear it.”

    Furthermore, unlike the First, the Second Amendment has a significant bit of “interest-balancing” explicitly written into it: the right to keep and bear arms is explicitly set forth as subordinate to the need for a well-regulated militia to guarantee the security of a free state.

    1- There is no such subordinate language. There is an explanation of intent. Huge difference. Compare: “the militia being necessary, the rights of the people shall not be infringed” vs “The rights of the people shall not be infringed only to the extant to preserve the militia.” Again, the purpose of constitutional law is to raise certain fact-finding and interest-balancing above the heads of the congress and the court.
    2- Even if it said “the people shall have the right to keep and bear arms, but only for the purposes of maintaining a well regulated militia”, you would still be on shaky ground. When it says “well regulated”, that was a particular idiomatic phrase at the time meaning “well trained”. When it says “militia”, that is almost synonymous with the people. Even today, there are laws on the books which define the militia as all able bodied men between 18 and 45 (IIRC).
    @Raging Bee

    Scalia is a fucking liar. ALL of the rights in the Constitution are subject, not only to “interest-balancing,” but to “rights balancing” as well. This is why, for example, freedom of speech does not include slander/libel, defamation, or incitement to riot, even though no such exceptions are stated in the Constitution itself.

    Strongly disagreed for every reason Scalia said. Your thinking is a rather naive kind of jurisprudence, almost as bad as Scalia’s “originalism”.

    For example, no one at the time of the passing of the second amendment understood it to be an absolute right to carry guns anywhere, for example into court houses, into prison (!), etc. Like the rest of the bill of rights, they were merely codifying a largely pre-existing right as they understood it in the context of English common law.

    Similarly, libel and slander were strongly established parts of English common law, and everyone understood for those to not be covered by the first amendment.

    It was understood that the first amendment protects speech which is merely offensive. I hold that there is no example whatsoever where the congress or the court should be able to decide that the mere offensiveness of some speech is enough to censor it. “I might disagree with what you have to say, but I will fight to the death for your right to say it.”

    As Scalia said, your rather idiotic and naive jurisprudence would gut all constitutional protections altogether. As Scalia said, the very purpose of constitutional law is to take certain interest-balancing questions out of the hands of congress and the courts. Otherwise, the protections would be meaningless. They would be worse than mere suggestions if you could interest-balance them away.

    “Rights balancing” is similarly naive.

    Furthermore, unlike the First, the Second Amendment has a significant bit of “interest-balancing” explicitly written into it: the right to keep and bear arms is explicitly set forth as subordinate to the need for a well-regulated militia to guarantee the security of a free state.

    1- There is no such subordinate language. There is an explanation of intent. Huge difference. Compare: “X being necessary, the rights of the people shall not be infringed” vs “The rights of the people shall not be infringed only to the extant that X is necessary.”
    2- Even if it said “the people shall have the right to keep and bear arms, but only for the purposes of maintaining a well regulated militia”, you would still be on shaky ground. When it says “well regulated”, that was a particular idiomatic phrase at the time meaning “well trained”. When it says “militia”, that is almost synonymous with the people. Even today, there are laws on the books which define the militia as all able bodied men between 18 and 45 (IIRC).

  192. EnlightenmentLiberal says

    @Raging Bee
    Hell Raging Bee, you’re even more of an idiot. Originally, the first amendment was a prohibition against interference by the federal government only. The federal government originally was intended and understood to be highly limited. In principle, all normal police power for ordinary crimes (murder, theft, etc.), would be reserved to the states. This is made abundantly clear in one of the Federalists (forget which one offhand – sorry).

    That means that the first amendment could never have been interpreted to outlaw slander or libel because slander and libel were always handle at the state level, never federal level. Your example is non-sensical.

    Further, libel and slander are civil cases, tort, not criminal law. Now, we cannot examine the first amendment on civil law cases because there was no such thing at the federal level at the time, but we could examine various free speech laws at the state level. I’m willing to bet a small amount that these constitutional protections were also understood only to affect possible criminal sanction, and not civil cases. Which again would make your example of libel and slander again wrong.

    In total, you have no clue what you are talking about.

  193. says

    For example, no one at the time of the passing of the second amendment understood it to be an absolute right to carry guns anywhere, for example into court houses, into prison (!), etc. Like the rest of the bill of rights, they were merely codifying a largely pre-existing right as they understood it in the context of English common law.

    Yes, and they expected both courts and legislatures to balance the stated rights against a variety of other rights and legitimate interests (without having to state every one of them in the Constitution), and limit the rights as appropriate to accommodate other stated rights and legitimate interests. So where am I being “naive” again?

    Similarly, libel and slander were strongly established parts of English common law, and everyone understood for those to not be covered by the first amendment.

    Yes — a right was expected to be balanced against certain legitimate needs. That was my point. Where am I wrong again?

    1- There is no such subordinate language. There is an explanation of intent. Huge difference.

    No, there’s no difference at all. If a right is set forth with an explanation of intent, then the intent limits the right — because the stated intent is part of the law, just like the right itself.

    The right to keep and bear arms is the only right in the Bill of Rights that is set forth explicitly as a means to an end. Read the ENTIRE Second Amendment, not just the part you like: the “well-regulated militia” and “the security of a free State” come FIRST; the “right of the people to keep and bear arms” comes SECOND. This can only mean that the latter right is limited by the former requirement.

    When it says “well regulated”, that was a particular idiomatic phrase at the time meaning “well trained”.

    First, that’s bullshit: being in a militia doesn’t just mean you’re trained, it also means you follow orders and regulations — otherwise you’re not a militia, you’re an armed gang. Furthermore, one of the most basic purposes of a militia is to REGULATE, and to disarm people who become a danger to others by refusing to obey orders, laws, or regulations. And second, you know as well as I do that the Constitution mentions a lot of concepts — such as “well-regulated militia” and “due process of law” — whose exact meaning changes over time as circumstances change.

    Are you going to argue that the right to be happy and safe trumps the right to have guns?

    Actually, yes: our right to go about in public places, without being threatened or intimidated by fools with guns and unknown intent, trumps said fools’ right to carry their guns in public. More importantly, our right to well-ordered liberty trumps our right to buy and carry whatever guns we want. (And don’t fall for the gun nuts’ bluff: the majority in the Heller case pretty much agreed with me on this.)

    Couldn’t someone make the same argument against free speech?

    No, dumbass, because free speech doesn’t cause immediate and predictable harm like guns do.

  194. zmidponk says

    sabrekgb #186:

    Yes, but other things have the ability to as well. Things can exercise deadly force, whether that is their primary purpose or not, and we trust people to not do that unless there is just cause. Yes, that is the purpose of a weapon, but that’s not a bad thing when such action is required.

    Do you seriously not get that the fact that these implements are specifically designed to kill and/or maim is what makes them different? People generally get into cars to drive, they generally don’t get in them to use them as weapons. People strap guns to themselves because they ARE weapons. Period. That is all they are. Nothing else.

    I really think you are. Cautious in as much as you should think “Hmm, probably not a good idea to try and assault that person.” which you shouldn’t be intending on doing anyway, not “OMG, run!” If he’s acting normally, you probably should too.

    Sorry, from my point of view, walking down the street openly displaying the fact you have a deadly weapon, for whatever reason, isn’t acting normally.

    Consider something. Suppose, one day, you were walking down the street, and, coming the other way, you saw a guy dressed pretty normally, say, jeans and a T-shirt – but with a katana strapped to his waist. Would your initial reaction be one of caution, and treating him as a possible threat? I very strongly suspect that, if you’re honest with yourself, the answer is ‘yes’, and the reason it’s ‘yes’ is because you’re seeing someone you know nothing about except that he’s walking around with a deadly weapon, just one you’re not used to seeing being worn/displayed in public. If my suspicion is correct, maybe you’ll see why people view you walking around with a gun with a great deal of caution and you as a possible threat.

    And without psychic powers it’s impossible to tell that about anyone in any circumstance ever…even when they have one of those other things capable of causing deadly harm. Barring evidence contrary, we just run with it and assume they won’t, the same thing can be true of guns; hence, my open carry…an effort to show people that nice individuals do indeed carry weapons.

    And, yet again, I will point out these other implements are not designed as deadly weapons, but are designed for other purposes. This is not true of guns.

    Thinking about something sometime does not mean someone is focused solely on it. I’ve thought a lot about a lot of other things…don’t be disingenuous and suggest that having a thought out position on something like that is a bad thing. Is having an understanding of historical race dynamics and inequalities in the U.S. a sign that someone thinks races can’t work together?

    Of course people cooperate. People who have physical power disparities, even. It’s a great thing. Hell, even I cooperate. That doesn’t take away the good of more equality of physical power among equals. They are in no way mutually exclusive.

    You introduced the concept of ‘equality of force amongst those working as equals’ into this discussion. Everything you’ve said since then has been focused on the idea of people having to be forced into cooperating, and, originally, treating the idea of voluntary cooperation as not existing, then talking as if it’s the exception, not the rule. I’m not really all that young any more, and I have never, in my entire life, come across a situation where I have needed force to get an ‘equal’ to work with me. Typically, simply asking them works quite well, in my experience, and, on the occasions where a simple request doesn’t work, I can usually gently persuade them to, if I really need their help. As such, ‘equalising force’ by giving people guns is not only unnecessary, but could potentially be actively detrimental to situations of ‘those working together as equals’, as you put it, for the very simple reason that people don’t like to be threatened – either directly or indirectly.

    Yes, they are…but…so? A military (prepare for war) is a thing designed to kill also. You’re saying that weapons are designed to kill/maim as if you’re making anything other than a tautological point… Of course they are…and….? What is the next step in that line of reasoning? You’re not stating a premise, or not coming to an actual conclusion, i’m not sure which.

    Weapons in general and firearms (most of them) are designed to effect deadly force…this is not a bad thing in and of itself, it all depends on the circumstances in which that deadly force is used. Stopping a murder with a gun is still potentially killing someone, but it is also a good thing. If you are expecting me to make the mental jump that weapons = kill, therefor bad…that’s where you lose me, and you didn’t even say that explicitly.

    I may be misinterpreting what you’re saying, but i can’t think of what else you might mean…i really think you have unstated premises. Correct me if i am wrong.

    Really?

    Wow.

    You seemingly can’t comprehend what the sentence I pointed out to you, “If you simply can’t understand that there are many people who find simply the presence of a deadly weapon aggressive and possibly provocative, given what a deadly weapon actually is, then there’s not much more to discuss”, means. I’ll see if I can explain it even more simply and explicitly, just for you.

    Guns are deadly weapons, which are devices specifically designed to maim and/or kill. We have safely established this, and you seem to accept this, so I’ll assume I don’t need to further explain this.

    There are plenty of people who, being aware of this fact, find a gun being present presents a risk and/or an implied threat that this gun will be used. Given your statements about how the implied threat of force can sometimes make the actual use of force unnecessary, this is also something you grasp (unless, of course, you think implied threats of force exclusively affect criminals and/or people who might do you or others harm).

    Given the above, these people find the presence of a gun, or, indeed, any other deadly weapon, on one level or another, aggressive and possibly provocative, and being aggressive or provocative doesn’t generally do much to promote peace.

    Now, if you simply are incapable of understanding that this is true, then there really is no point in further discussing this, as you are incapable of grasping certain essential facts of reality.

    No. A case like that might very well lead to me being prosecuted for manslaughter. That would suck all around, and seems like a case for the courts to handle…we’d see what a jury decides. Remember, i never said bad stuff wouldn’t still happen…i do think that the overall amount of bad stuff would be reduced though. Externalities and unintended consequences abound in a complex society like ours. That potential, while unfortunate and which would be minimized as best i could, is not sufficient for the actual curtailment of my rights.

    Well, at least you’re honest – what you’ve basically said here is that your right to pretend you’re a modern-day cowboy (which, when you strip away all the high-sounding shite from your ‘protecting myself and others’ crap, is really what it boils down to) is above everything, and if that results in me getting a bullet from a shoot-out you’ve instigated or contributed to, because I happened to walk down the wrong street at the wrong time, too bad. I just have to be satisfied that, if it just so happens it was your bullet that hit me, you might get prosecuted for manslaughter.

    Also, keep in mind that this is a potential with the police…in which case you definitely don’t get a say and they certainly won’t be punished for the crossfire.

    The only real valid reason police should be armed in the US is how easy it is to get a gun for most folk in the US – thanks quite a bit to people like you.

    Great case in point, the NYC shooting in front of the Empire state building where police shot 9 bystanders trying to hit a killer. Think they’ll be punished substantially?

    If they’re not, they should be, assuming there was no good reason why the officers in question fired when and how they did. And they only get that provisio because they are the police, and it’s therefore part of their job to deal with killers like that.

  195. says

    “Great case in point, the NYC shooting in front of the Empire state building where police shot 9 bystanders trying to hit a killer. Think they’ll be punished substantially?”

    You’d have done better, I’m sure.

  196. throwaway, never proofreads, every post a gamble says

    So amid all the answers you’ve given me, sabrekgb, the only thing that matters is your presumed safety in maintaining arms at all possible hours of the day that such is reasonable. How much of that presumed safety is reflected by actual statistics? I mean, what are the odds that not only will you be mugged, or confronted with a weapon, but that you will have time to use your defensive firearm? I mean, you can practice and prepare and try to observe all the safety precautions, but here’s the question I think is not being honestly engaged with: at what point does my desire for safety from gun accidents and raging assholes with power-tripping issues get trumped by your desire to kill any and all opposition to yourself in duty of rescuing a hostage, or whipping a gun out at the last second to save your life? The reality is that gun accidents are more likely. The reality is that if you’ve got a firearm, and every criminal knows that they should expect a firearm, then the odds of you being in a position to retaliate go down even further than if guns were illegal. Because I would shoot you, even as a criminal, to protect myself, as I’m robbing you, or whatever my impetus was. And you won’t see it coming. And others, who may not even be armed, won’t see it coming. But the criminal is so antsy they don’t care about distinctions such as that.

    As for the silly car faux-nalogy: when a seatbelt works as designed, it does not kill the driver of the other vehicle or any bystanders.

  197. A. Noyd says

    democommie (#209)

    You’d have done better, I’m sure.

    I bet sabrekgb could do as well as Joseph Wilcox.

  198. EnlightenmentLiberal says

    @Raging Bee

    Similarly, libel and slander were strongly established parts of English common law, and everyone understood for those to not be covered by the first amendment.

    Yes — a right was expected to be balanced against certain legitimate needs. That was my point. Where am I wrong again?

    The first amendment was written to apply only to the federal government. The federal government had no power over civil cases. Libel, slander, and defamation are civil cases. Thus, the first amendment cannot be honestly read to even touch upon libel, slander and defamation.

    Incitement to riot is sort of a bullshit excuse to begin with. One which I’m not even sure I buy. In short, the excuse is that this is no longer speech, but it’s an action, and thus the first amendment does not apply. Thus, here we do not have interest balancing between free speech and some other interest. Instead, we have the government restriction a non-speech action.

    Of course, as I wrote above, I’m sure there were free speech protections in the constitutions and laws for the states at that time, and I’m willing to bet that the intent, common understanding, and case law surrounding them was that they were only to apply to government sanctions and not civil cases. Thus your examples are again bunk.

    Even further, a proper jurisprudence is not to take the literal reading of the amendment. You have to take into account the legal atmosphere of the tiem, the culture, the intent, and the common understanding of the law. Your incredibly naive jurisprudence is simply wrong, and dangerous. Thankfully you’re not a judge.

    The first amendment does not cover fraud, nor giving false testimony while under oath. No honest jurisprudence would have it cover fraud, or giving false testimony while under oath. Your ridiculously simplistic jurisprudence says that the first amendment does cover those things, but that the court has decided that it’s in the interests of the people that those things should be illegal.

    First, that means the constitutional protections are worth exactly 0. You are saying that at any time, the court may decide that some other issue is more important, and trumps constitutional rights. I’m sorry – that’s not how constitutional law has ever worked.

    Further, Scalia is right when he says that law, and constitutional law in particular, often codifies certain fact-finding and interest balancing judgments. The purposefully general language of our constitution was intended to be exactly that. It was intended to encode certain value judgments and interest balancing. The first amendment was expressly meant to encode the interest balancing that one person’s interest to be offensive and heard in a public space generally outweighs someone else’s interest to not be offended. Similarly, the second amendment expressly codifies the interest balancing that someone’s right to own and carry a gun generally outweighs someone else’s right to be safe from gun violence.

    If you do not like the law, then change it. The founders would be right with you that the constitution is not sacrosanct, and if you think the law no longer applies to today’s age, which maybe the second amendment does not, then it should be changed. They would also be right there to inform you that they put a mechanism in there to change it, called the amendment process, and it would be foolhardy to pretend one constitutional protection meant something else because that same kind of reasoning could be applied to the rest of your constitutional protections.

    For example, no one at the time of the passing of the second amendment understood it to be an absolute right to carry guns anywhere, for example into court houses, into prison (!), etc. Like the rest of the bill of rights, they were merely codifying a largely pre-existing right as they understood it in the context of English common law.

    Yes, and they expected both courts and legislatures to balance the stated rights against a variety of other rights and legitimate interests (without having to state every one of them in the Constitution), and limit the rights as appropriate to accommodate other stated rights and legitimate interests. So where am I being “naive” again?

    No, they very much did not expect courts and legislatures to adopt such a naive jurisprudence. See above.

    Of course they felt that other interests should be considered. Hell, I would go a step farther than most and argue that the ninth amendment was expressly there to ensure that the court could and would be activist to protect our other rights. But again, the only honest reading of the second amendment, with a proper understanding of its history and surrounding culture, is that it codifies the interest balancing that one person’s right to keep and carry a gun generally outweighs someone else’s interest in being safe from gun violence.

    Of course being safe from violence is a compelling interest. But the second amendment clearly states that gun rights generally trump “safety from gun violence” rights. This is similar to how the fourth amendment’s protection unreasonable search and seizure rights generally trump the “safety from murderers and thieves” right. That’s what a constitutional protection is.

    No, there’s no difference at all. If a right is set forth with an explanation of intent, then the intent limits the right — because the stated intent is part of the law, just like the right itself.

    Again no. They stated their intent, and then they stated the means by which they would achieve that end. The stated intent is just flavor. The law codifies the means, not the intent. They codified the means that the people shall have the right to own a gun. Their fact-finding may be wrong, but the right will still exist. Their interest balancing and value judgment may be wrong – just like the fourth amendment may be wrong – but the right will still exist.

    If you want to see language which is conditional on intent, then you should look at the necessary and proper clause.
    en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Necessary_and_Proper_Clause
    That ties the means to the intent and no further.

    First, that’s bullshit: being in a militia doesn’t just mean you’re trained, it also means you follow orders and regulations — otherwise you’re not a militia, you’re an armed gang.

    What do you think the militia is? It’s an armed gang. Many of the officers in the war of independence, George Washington included, were quite critical of the militia.

    But more to the point. Again, the text reads to the effect “a well trained militia is necessary for a free country, and thus the right of the people to keep guns shall not be infringed”. They identified that people owning guns is a necessary condition to having a well trained militia. They identified that a well trained militia is a necessary condition of having a free country. However, that’s just prose. Maybe their fact finding is wrong. Maybe having guns are not necessary to have a well trained militia. Even then, the right would still stand, because the law codifies the means to their end, regardless of whether their end is immoral, the means is immoral, and/or the means is ineffective.

    Furthermore, one of the most basic purposes of a militia is to REGULATE, and to disarm people who become a danger to others by refusing to obey orders, laws, or regulations.

    What’s your point?

    And second, you know as well as I do that the Constitution mentions a lot of concepts — such as “well-regulated militia” and “due process of law” — whose exact meaning changes over time as circumstances change.

    Bullshit. In this sense, the constitution is not a living document. There should never be a day when “congress shall not establish a religion” will slowly drift to mean “congress may require everyone to tithe 10% of their money to the Roman Catholic Church”. I reject this bullshit in its entirety.

    No, dumbass, because free speech doesn’t cause immediate and predictable harm like guns do.

    So, you’re in charge of the world? And here I was looking for good jurisprudence. You see, there are lots and lots of people out there who feel incredible pain, hurt, and outrage from blasphemy, and they might be on the courts instead of you. I’m looking for good laws and good jurisprudence that do not require saints to in charge.

    If you prefer: You could make the same argument against the protections of the fourth amendment. You could say that the police should have the power to search and seize without probable cause. I mean – what’s the purpose of that? It only protects criminals. And by the same exact kind of bullshit reasoning you employ against the second, you could also take out the fourth.

  199. EnlightenmentLiberal says

    @Raging Bee
    To be clear, the US constitution is a “living document” in the sense that it is written in vague terms and lofty ideals. Often the laws and protections are written in a general way to apply to today, and a hundred years from now. The fourth amendments protections still make sense today when we have cell phones when it written two hundred years ago.

    Of course, if enough people decide that they do not like it, then they can change it with an amendment. In that sense, it’s also a living document.

    However, the constitution is not a living document in the sense that if enough people decide that they do not like one part of it, that they can decide that it means something else by anything short of an actual amendment. The constitution, like any good government, depends on the rule of law, and rule of law is fundamentally incompatible with your childish notion of a “living document”.

  200. EnlightenmentLiberal says

    Because I would shoot you, even as a criminal, to protect myself, as I’m robbing you, or whatever my impetus was. And you won’t see it coming. And others, who may not even be armed, won’t see it coming. But the criminal is so antsy they don’t care about distinctions such as that.

    To be fair, the statistics here are not so clear cut.

    I recall reading a study about airport taxicabs in this one city. They were all clearly marked as airport taxicabs. They had a rate of carjacking much higher than your average taxicab. The reasoning was that because they were airport taxicabs, criminals knew that they were much less likely to have a gun on them, and thus they made the perfect victims. Later, it was changed so that the airport taxicabs were not identified as such, and carjacking rates of those airport taxicabs went down to normal levels.

    It should be noted that in self response surveys of criminals in prison, an absurdly high number say that they have been swayed from doing crimes because of the fear that a particular person may have a gun.

    Of course, you could counter that the criminals just went elsewhere to do their crime, but that suggests that criminal activity is some sort of “inflexible good” where the preponderance of it, the “demand”, does not respond to changes in “price” at all. That’s just silly. Of course criminals respond to external factors, and of course the rate of crime can be meaningfully affected by various programs, including better employment, more police, and so on.

    I find that there are incredibly bad statistics on both sides of this issue, and that’s why I needed to call out your highly questionable thought experiment.

    PS: However, offhand, I probably am partial to the position that having a gun is more dangerous than not having a gun for most people in the US.

  201. says

    However, the constitution is not a living document in the sense that if enough people decide that they do not like one part of it, that they can decide that it means something else by anything short of an actual amendment.

    Actually, that’s exactly how our interpretation of the Constitution has evolved in several instances (mostly for the better): several generations of people are perfectly okay with a certain situation (i.e. apartheid); but then the next generation starts rethinking the situation, describing why it should be changed, campaigning for change, and eventually there’s a SCOTUS ruling that the situation that used to stand unquestioned, now looks, under questioning, in contradiction to a part of the Constitution that previous generations hadn’t invoked. That’s how we got desegregation, one-person-one-vote, Miranda rights, abortion rights, and a few other improvements. (And the objections you state here to this evolution are pretty much the same thing bigots and reactionaries said in response to all of those landmark SCOTUS decisions.)

  202. says

    Similarly, the second amendment expressly codifies the interest balancing that someone’s right to own and carry a gun generally outweighs someone else’s right to be safe from gun violence.

    Bullshit. It is the duty of ALL governments to protect people from violence and crime; and the Constitution explicitly says the US shall guarantee “equal PROTECTION of the laws” and “a republican form of government.” So yes, the people have a right to be safe from gun violence, and that right limits the right to own guns.

    Your understanding of the Constitution is pure ignorant crap. You need to stop letting the NRA tell you what it says — they lie.

  203. says

    It should be noted that in self response surveys of criminals in prison, an absurdly high number say that they have been swayed from doing crimes because of the fear that a particular person may have a gun.

    Is that greater than the number of criminals who said their own guns enabled them to commit crimes they would not otherwise have committed?

  204. says

    Even further, a proper jurisprudence is not to take the literal reading of the amendment. You have to take into account the legal atmosphere of the tiem, the culture, the intent, and the common understanding of the law. Your incredibly naive jurisprudence is simply wrong, and dangerous. Thankfully you’re not a judge.

    You echo what I said, then call me wrong, stupid AND dangerous? Do you have any idea what you’re talking about? Or are you just that desperate to avoid admitting I’m right? (Either answer would explain your absolutely idiotic idea of gun rights.)

  205. sabrekgb says

    Let me ask a question, two in fact:

    -No one responded to my asking it above, but would anyone who i’ve been arguing with have any support for Enlightenment Liberal’s gun class law?

    -Would any of your arguments change if carry was concealed vs. open, mooting the issue of alarm?

    Do you seriously not get that the fact that these implements are specifically designed to kill and/or maim is what makes them different?

    I think i may have identified a key difference in our thinking that is tripping things up here. I see “weapon” as a subset of “tool”. Deadly tools, to be sure, but i don’t have a moral feeling about them that is appreciably different fro what i have for the set of “tool” overall. From what you’re saying, i think you may be parsing “weapon” as a separate set…a distinct thing, and then imbuing it with a negative moral feeling by virtue of it being a thing which causes harm. Does this sound like it might be somewhere close to accurate? It seems to me this would be a reason why you seem to think that i should have a certain feeling about something because it is designed to effect deadly force, and why I, while acknowledging the same facts as to purpose, don’t have that same reaction.

    A gun, in and of itself, does not scare me. Do you have any reaction to it, just in and of itself (not taking into account anything else, just emotional reaction solely to the weapon)?

    Also, it’s just anecdote, but i’ll toss it out there: This reaction you keep talking about, this fear and panic, and disgust or distrust…this negative thing about seeing someone with a weapon peaceably going about their day, even exchanging polite smiles…I don’t see it. I am observant when i walk around and i don’t see the reaction you’re claiming. It’s not that it’s something that is being hidden from me, either…people aren’t that good usually at concealing reactions. Most people simply don’t see or register that i have a weapon, as they are intent on going about their day. Many do, and it’s a simple glance to see what it is on my hip and then they continue on unfazed, whatever it is they are doing. There are the occasional eyebrow raises, but they are outnumbered by the “What model is that?” or the “Oh, is that legal here?” conversation starts that you say people would be too afraid to make. Mostly there is no reaction at all.

    Honestly, i just don’t see it, real world, as the problem you’re claiming. If this were theory only, that would be one thing, but i have several years worth of days and overall good or indifferent encounters to look on. *shrug* It’s simply not the wild west you think it would be…

  206. EnlightenmentLiberal says

    That’s how we got desegregation, one-person-one-vote, Miranda rights, abortion rights, and a few other improvements.

    Let’s look one by one, shall we?

    Desegregation. Brown v Board for example was putting right earlier bad jurisprudence. The decision was based on the fourteenth amendment. I don’t see them reinterpreting the constitution contrary to the common intent and understanding of those who passed the fourteenth amendment.

    One person one vote? Again, blacks was covered under the fifteenth, and women was the nineteenth.

    Miranda rights? Meh. Not an enumerated right. Could make a weak case from the ninth. This is the weakest one in your list, and there’s a reason for that.

    Abortion rights is clearly the ninth. Unfortunately courts decided to ignore the ninth entirely. IMHO, the ninth was intended in part to incorporate a particular principle of government. Jefferson espoused it here: “The legitimate powers of government extend to such acts only as are injurious to others. It does me no injury for my neighbor to say there are twenty gods or no god. It neither picks my pocket nor breaks my leg.”
    John Stuart Mill later captured this in IMHO the highlight of the European Enlightenment, On Liberty and his Harm Principle. Combine that with the first amendment’s protection against religious prohibitions, and early term abortion rights should be a no-brainer, just like the court decided. Again, unfortunate that they didn’t more explicitly invoke the ninth, instead relying on this nebulous and bullshit “privacy” opinion.

    For the most part, I see people recognizing problems with the document, and changing it, rather than pretending it means something else when they don’t like it. Your examples of Miranda rights and abortion rights are the exception to the rule (one of which should have already been covered by the ninth).

    Bullshit. It is the duty of ALL governments to protect people from violence and crime; and the Constitution explicitly says the US shall guarantee “equal PROTECTION of the laws” and “a republican form of government.” So yes, the people have a right to be safe from gun violence, and that right limits the right to own guns.

    Your understanding of the Constitution is pure ignorant crap. You need to stop letting the NRA tell you what it says — they lie.

    Fuck the NRA. They’re standing in the way of the registration class I talked about above and other good ideas for lessening gun violence. I have a few gun nut friends back in Michigan, and every one of them would be accepting of this class. Even the gun nut in this thread would be for the class. It’s supported by everyone, but the damn NRA and other lobby groups won’t let it happen. I bet it would make a significant impact and be entirely noncontroversial, except by those with a vested interest in selling guns.

    Also, still doesn’t change the unambiguous history here. Look at England where they tried to disarm the Protestants or Catholics in favor of the other group. That’s one of the large foundations of the English right to bear arms, which the US right is based upon.

    Remember the history of the bill of rights. It was passed by the federalists who were in charge to placate the anti-federalists who were afraid of government power. The federalists however passed only non-controversial protections as an appeasement gesture. All of the rights protected by the bill of rights were no-brainers to the people at the time, such as free speech, not being forced to house soldiers, gun rights, and so on. I’m sorry you’re grossly ignorant of the history.

    You echo what I said, then call me wrong, stupid AND dangerous? Do you have any idea what you’re talking about? Or are you just that desperate to avoid admitting I’m right? (Either answer would explain your absolutely idiotic idea of gun rights.

    Correction: The intent, understanding, surrounding culture, etc. at the time of adoption.

  207. sabrekgb says

    @209 democommie

    You’d have done better, I’m sure.

    You’re damn right I would have. A trained chimp would have. An untrained chimp, even.

    They tried to shoot one person, and hit 9 others…it’s hard to do worse.

    @211 A. Noyd

    I bet sabrekgb could do as well as Joseph Wilcox.

    A chance i take by trying to help; if it gets me killed, that’s sad, but i accept that risk. Wilcox’ actions were heroic, unfortunately he was taken by surprise, just like the two armed and uniformed police killed the same day by those people.

  208. EnlightenmentLiberal says

    @sabrekgb
    Let me share. I’m somewhat sympathetic to your cause, but I do think the facts of a pure self defense argument for gun rights is not so good. The stats are pretty bullshit on both sides, but I think the argument is good that it’s more dangerous to yourself to have a gun than to not have one.

    First, I strongly hold to the rule of law, and that’s why I defend the proper jurisprudence, in order to protect my other rights.

    As for whether I support the second amendment… meh. I think the best argument one can make is that a proper educated gun culture is a good thing. It reaffirms that the government is a servant to us, and not the other way around. I am a strong believer in “Where the people fear the government you have tyranny. Where the government fears the people you have liberty”.

    Similarly, I think the court gets the fourth amendment completely wrong. The modern court considers it a balance between the interest of individuals to maintain their privacy and not be inconvenienced vs legitimate government interests. That’s completely wrong. The right way to think about it is a balance between preventing a police state and tyranny vs legitimate government interests.

    I dislike the general lack of civics knowledge in our population, and the lack of will to change things for the better. I dislike how people respect our prosecutors and police, when they commit such flagrant abuses and get away with it. We need a resurgence of properly cultured and appropriate anit-government sentiment, and I find some inkling of that in the gun rights movement. Unfortunately, most of them seem to be anarchist or anti-federalist nuts. /sigh

    As long as the number of deaths from guns is relatively low, I think it’s a price I’m willing to pay. IIRC, the numbers are rather high though, which makes me feel uncomfortable.

  209. sabrekgb says

    @215 Tsu Dho Nimh

    And all of that, despite strict gun control laws there.

    Seattle, a city with comparatively lax gun control laws, appears to have had 7 shootings, one of which was fatal. [1] [2]

    Wikipedia says the populations of each city are 2.71 million and 635,000, respectively. Adjusting linearly for population, that would have been 30 shootings and 4 fatalities.

    Seattle had a rate of shootings over that timeframe ~60% lower and a rate of shooting fatalities ~70% lower than Chicago…despite lax gun laws, including legal open carry.

    Seems like the guns may not be the biggest factor in play here…but we knew that already, didn’t we?

    This also doesn’t get into taking into account the fact that the rates in Chicago are actually lower than last year or how many of those shootings/killings happened with legally possessed firearms vice illegal ones (leaving out the people the cops shot).

    1. http://www.komonews.com/news/archive/4011776.html
    2. http://spdblotter.seattle.gov/2014/07/06/man-struck-by-gunfire-during-rolling-gun-battle/

  210. sabrekgb says

    @223 Enlightenment Liberal

    Thanks for sharing. I tend to agree with most of what you’ve said in this thread, and a lot from others, such as i recall. I can’t speak for others, as no movement is monolithic and i very well may be an aberration with regards to my stance on gun rights when considering my other views. I am neither an anarchist nor an anti-federalist, i support a strong (though much smaller and somewhat more limited) federal govt.

    You mention the high numbers of gun deaths and i wonder if you’re counting suicide by gun in those numbers for the purposes of this conversation. If so, why?

    Suicide saddens me, and i wish that it was something reserved only for terminal and similar issues, but i also feel that it is not very relevant within the context of discussions on gun violence. Numbers which include suicide skew the data by incorporating two very different sources that have little in common other than the gun itself. I think this is not helpful.

    I support attempts to reduce suicide, but I also support people’s right to kill themself. And, it being a choice made (even one that they would decide against, if it weren’t so effective and swift a means), restricting gun rights in order to reduce suicide is wrong.

    I am curious about your take.

  211. sabrekgb says

    @208 zmidponk

    Consider something. Suppose, one day, you were walking down the street, and, coming the other way, you saw a guy dressed pretty normally, say, jeans and a T-shirt – but with a katana strapped to his waist. Would your initial reaction be one of caution, and treating him as a possible threat? I very strongly suspect that, if you’re honest with yourself, the answer is ‘yes’, and the reason it’s ‘yes’ is because you’re seeing someone you know nothing about except that he’s walking around with a deadly weapon, just one you’re not used to seeing being worn/displayed in public. If my suspicion is correct, maybe you’ll see why people view you walking around with a gun with a great deal of caution and you as a possible threat.

    This is something i rarely see, so initially it would be something i would pay close attention to for novelty if nothing else. If his sword is sheathed and he is not acting aggressively, then no, after the initial novelty examination, i would not consider him more of a threat than anyone else (to clarify, his possession of a weapon means that if he does become a threat, he will have greater capacity to cause damage, but this does not say anything about likelihood, two different meanings for the word threat wrapped up in there). I certainly wouldn’t draw on him, act aggressively myself, or run away screaming (even if unarmed that day myself). I, if we are honest, may even be more likely to talk to him as i find it interesting that he is carrying a sword and would be curious about it…a good conversation starter for sure.

    I don’t think that’s the reaction you’re expecting, but i legitimately thought through what i would do in that situation and i am being completely honest.

    @210 throaway

    As for the silly car faux-nalogy: when a seatbelt works as designed, it does not kill the driver of the other vehicle or any bystanders.

    I didn’t say anything about seatbelts.

  212. Tsu Dho Nimh says

    A gun, in and of itself, does not scare me. Do you have any reaction to it, just in and of itself (not taking into account anything else, just emotional reaction solely to the weapon)?

    Gun, lying there all on its lonesome on a shelf with no human within grabbing distance … no.

    Gun, within reach of a human, dangling from a human’s shoulder, being held in a human’s hands … whole different device.

    You see, I know guns don’t kill people, I know people kill people, and guns make it way easier for people to kill people from a distance, and kill lots of people in a very short time.

    Example: A known nutcase (I was in the psych ward, drawing blood samples) was across the rec room when she decided to kill me as I walked through the room. If she had been armed, or if there had been a gun nearby, she could have shot me from several yards away. Because she didn’t have a gun, she was forced to get close enough to me to try to strangle me with my phlebotomy tourniquet

  213. Tsu Dho Nimh says

    @211 – If Wilcox had shot to kill as soon as he saw the guy with the gun, instead of trying to interact with him, it might have worked out.

    @222 – “unfortunately he was taken by surprise”

    So the lesson I take away from that incident is “shoot first and let the coroner sort them out”. And that means shoot the person with the visible gun and everyone with them just in case they are the backup. As soon as you see them walk into the store.

  214. says

    Raging Bee:

    Your current chew toy, Enshrouded Liar is long on comments like this:

    “To be fair, the statistics here are not so clear cut.”

    “I recall reading a study about airport taxicabs in this one city.”

    “It should be noted that in self response surveys of criminals in prison, an absurdly high number say that they have been swayed from doing crimes because of the fear that a particular person may have a gun”

    without bothering to include a citation or excerpt from said, “study”, I’m pretty sure that they are either inconclusive, not peer reviewed or non-existent. Well, they could also be quote mined or cherry picked.

    You need, also, to remember who you’re arguing with, here.

    @215:

    Yeah, but, but, but, um Mosul, Baghdad, Kabul, Waziristan, Somalia, Crimea, um, uh, BENGHAZI!! It happens everywehere, see; Yeah, that’s the ticket. The fact that those other places I mentioned have non-functional gummints in many cases, no genuine civil police forces that are capable of dealing with the level of violence in those communities and completely fucked civil infrastructure might have something to do with what goes on in those places. But, the two things that they have in common (one, the other or both, depending on the locale)? Gunz and religious zealot*.

    “You’re damn right I would have. A trained chimp would have. An untrained chimp, even.

    They tried to shoot one person, and hit 9 others…it’s hard to do worse.”

    Absolute horseshit. Your confidence, or is it just arrogance, is based on something that is completely conjectural. Guy runs around the corner and points a gun at you, you have a split second to draw, aim and fire–in a crowd? Get back to us after the next shooting incident you’re involved in and update us–if you’re still alive, dumbfuck.

    Your comments become more unhinged with each submission.

    * Religious zealotry on the part of the suicide bombers and people who are sent off to be a human sacrifice for Allah or whatever flavor of deity is on their menu; financial zealotry and power hunger is what informs the actions of the people in charge–for the most part.

  215. D. C. Sessions says

    That’s how we got desegregation, one-person-one-vote, Miranda rights, abortion rights, and a few other improvements.

    It’s also how we got Citizens United, Hobby Lobby, and Heller. Among others.

  216. says

    Yeah, DC, we have a republic — if we can keep it. And our willingness to keep it is dependent on our vigilance, more than on our laws. The cases you cite are, in part, a failure of vigilance.

    Also, still doesn’t change the unambiguous history here. Look at England where they tried to disarm the Protestants or Catholics in favor of the other group.

    They did that for a damn good reason: Catholics and Protestants were fighting a bitter bloody protracted civil/religious war; so trying to disarm one faction or the other made perfect sense. The English common law you speak of is nothing but a compromise between two sides when neither of them could win; and it worked mostly because both sides just got tired of endless fighting. None of that justifies, or creates, an unlimited right to own guns in any part of the British Empire.

    Remember the history of the bill of rights. It was passed by the federalists who were in charge to placate the anti-federalists who were afraid of government power. The federalists however passed only non-controversial protections as an appeasement gesture. All of the rights protected by the bill of rights were no-brainers to the people at the time, such as free speech, not being forced to house soldiers, gun rights, and so on. I’m sorry you’re grossly ignorant of the history.

    Once again, you resort to insults without explaining how any of that refutes anything I’ve said. You bluff like a libertarian, and you keep on trying to bluff after you’ve been called.

    Correction: The intent, understanding, surrounding culture, etc. at the time of adoption.

    Further correction: the Founders understood that circumstances would most likely change, and keep on changing, after they were dead; and that future generations’ application of the law in the real world would have to change with it.

    A gun, in and of itself, does not scare me.

    Another dumb, empty non-statement from a dumb, empty gun nut. A gun, in and of itself, would be a gun that has to be impounded by someone before a kid could stumble on it. A gun in the possession of a civilian in a public place with no apparent reason to have one would, and should, scare most people, because so many pointless shootings have already happened, and because we have no visual cues to tell us in advance which gun-owner will be the next shooter.

    And let’s dispense with the bogus comparisons to knives, cars and baseball bats — if you can’t or won’t see the obvious logistical/tactical differences between those and guns, then you have nothing to contribute to this conversation. Here’s a little hint: guns kill more quickly, and have far greater range, than any of those other things.

    Suicide saddens me, and i wish that it was something reserved only for terminal and similar issues, but i also feel that it is not very relevant within the context of discussions on gun violence.

    Suicides are included for a very good reason: guns make suicide both much easier, and much more likely to succeed, so it is very reasonable to conclude that many, if not most, gun-suicides would not have happened at all but for the availability of a gun. Clearly, sabrekgb, suicides don’t sadden you enough to make you see this rather obvious and relevant fact.

    I support attempts to reduce suicide, but I also support people’s right to kill themself.

    Oops, so much for the “suicide saddens me” pretense. There’s a good reason we don’t recognize a “right” to kill oneself: such decisions tend to be made by people in mental states where they cannot be fully responsible for their actions; and the easily-taken act of suicide is irreversible, so it makes good sense to intervene, to at least give people more time to reconsider such decisions.

  217. A. Noyd says

    This is how delusional this dumbshit’s fantasies are: He thinks Joseph Wilcox was a hero for accomplishing absolutely nothing other than getting himself killed. And Wilcox’s wanna-be cowboy antics could easily have gotten others killed with him, since if he didn’t spot Amanda Miller (or didn’t think she was a danger), he could have also failed to notice any customers that he was putting into the crossfire.

  218. Menyambal says

    So we have a right to kill ourselves, even though it is nowhere written down and everywhere forbidden. The right to own guns, well that exists, too, but it comes from the Second Amendment, somehow. SabreKGB, are you just pulling these rights out of your ass?

    The Second Amendment enables the citizenry to ensure the defense of their state by being in a well-trained militia. (Sorry, Raging Bee, but “regulated” does mean trained. Enlightenment Liberal is wrong in almost everything else, though.) The guns of the time took a lot of practice, as did the tactics. The body of the Constitution forbids standing armies, and say the states will supply arms to the militias. The militias get to practice with real military-issue arms that they can keep locally, not in state arsenals, and the people staff the militias, not some state-paid mercenaries, and they bear those arms in time of war. It’s the people’s army of the people’s state, and the National Guard is the present equivalent.

    The Second Amendment does not say “citizen” or “person” or “own” or “gun” or “carry”. It says “A well regulated militia being necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed.” The militia is for state security, the people of the state have a right to serve in it, and to make it a good one.

  219. zmidponk says

    sabrekgb #220:

    I think i may have identified a key difference in our thinking that is tripping things up here. I see “weapon” as a subset of “tool”. Deadly tools, to be sure, but i don’t have a moral feeling about them that is appreciably different fro what i have for the set of “tool” overall. From what you’re saying, i think you may be parsing “weapon” as a separate set…a distinct thing, and then imbuing it with a negative moral feeling by virtue of it being a thing which causes harm. Does this sound like it might be somewhere close to accurate? It seems to me this would be a reason why you seem to think that i should have a certain feeling about something because it is designed to effect deadly force, and why I, while acknowledging the same facts as to purpose, don’t have that same reaction.

    That’s almost accurate. Weapon are tools, yes, but they are very specialised tools, which do one thing and one thing only – maim and/or kill. As such, they should be treated differently to any other tools for that reason by anyone who views maiming and/or killing as being wrong. Now, I could understand you not having this feeling if you were trying to argue that weapons had another purpose, but this is not the case – you seem to admit and accept, weapons are, indeed, explicitly and solely for maiming and/or killing, yet dismiss that there is any reason at all for being cautious around those who have decided to strap one to themselves. Instead, you seem to take the contradictory position that it’s perfectly OK for you to take the pro-active step of making sure you are in possession of a deadly weapon, just in case some random stranger attacks you or someone around you, yet I should not take the pro-active step of, where possible, avoiding being around a random stranger that has taken the trouble to arm themselves with a deadly weapon, just in case they decide to use that weapon on me.

    A gun, in and of itself, does not scare me. Do you have any reaction to it, just in and of itself (not taking into account anything else, just emotional reaction solely to the weapon)?

    A gun, in and of itself, does not scare me either. Somebody with a gun for no discernible reason at least makes me cautious.

    Also, it’s just anecdote, but i’ll toss it out there: This reaction you keep talking about, this fear and panic, and disgust or distrust…this negative thing about seeing someone with a weapon peaceably going about their day, even exchanging polite smiles…I don’t see it. I am observant when i walk around and i don’t see the reaction you’re claiming. It’s not that it’s something that is being hidden from me, either…people aren’t that good usually at concealing reactions. Most people simply don’t see or register that i have a weapon, as they are intent on going about their day. Many do, and it’s a simple glance to see what it is on my hip and then they continue on unfazed, whatever it is they are doing. There are the occasional eyebrow raises, but they are outnumbered by the “What model is that?” or the “Oh, is that legal here?” conversation starts that you say people would be too afraid to make. Mostly there is no reaction at all.

    Honestly, i just don’t see it, real world, as the problem you’re claiming. If this were theory only, that would be one thing, but i have several years worth of days and overall good or indifferent encounters to look on. *shrug* It’s simply not the wild west you think it would be…

    It’s not the wild west because you’re not following your own rule about having ‘excess of force with those who would do me harm’. I actually outright asked you if you were therefore admitting that rule was wrong. You didn’t reply. I therefore assume that you are.

    This is something i rarely see, so initially it would be something i would pay close attention to for novelty if nothing else. If his sword is sheathed and he is not acting aggressively, then no, after the initial novelty examination, i would not consider him more of a threat than anyone else (to clarify, his possession of a weapon means that if he does become a threat, he will have greater capacity to cause damage, but this does not say anything about likelihood, two different meanings for the word threat wrapped up in there). I certainly wouldn’t draw on him, act aggressively myself, or run away screaming (even if unarmed that day myself). I, if we are honest, may even be more likely to talk to him as i find it interesting that he is carrying a sword and would be curious about it…a good conversation starter for sure.

    I don’t think that’s the reaction you’re expecting, but i legitimately thought through what i would do in that situation and i am being completely honest.

    Why do you open carry instead of simply carry, then? From what you’ve said here, it does nothing to enhance your safety, or the safety of others, which is your given reasons for doing it, as it utterly fails to show any kind of implied threat of force to anyone considering doing you or others harm. Instead, all it does is make you a target, with the ‘dissuading effect’ you were talking about being non-existent. Either that, or your answer is being somewhat economical with the truth.

  220. D. C. Sessions says

    This reaction you keep talking about, this fear and panic, and disgust or distrust

    Wonderful example of exactly why there’s no communication going on here.

    After scores of comments on how rational you are, you totally ignore any and all quantitative risk-reward analyses. Rather than address the differences between cars and firearms (different uses implying different risk intent, different design objectives implying different risk potential) you keep interpreting the positions of everyone but you as based purely on emotion — so that all it will take to persuade people is a different marketing plan.

  221. says

    The Second Amendment enables the citizenry to ensure the defense of their state by being in a well-trained militia. (Sorry, Raging Bee, but “regulated” does mean trained. Enlightenment Liberal is wrong in almost everything else, though.)

    How can “regulated” be construed to mean nothing but “trained?” Those two words are not synonymous today, and I have a hard time believing they were synonymous back then either. A “militia,” like an army, police department or any other armed security force, is, by definition, a hierarchical organization dedicated to a specific set of objectives, and bound by specific rules and regulations, in which members are required to obey orders and comply with rules, otherwise they get kicked out or otherwise punished. So when you’re talking about any such armed security forces, “regulated” means “following orders and regulations,” not just “trained in the use of weapons.” that is, as I said before, what separates a “militia” from an “armed gang.” Any gang of armed thugs can be skilled in the use of weapons — that doesn’t make them a “well-regulated” anything — it just makes them the kind of threat a well-regulated militia is supposed to crush and disarm so they don’t hurt innocent people.

  222. says

    SabreKGB, are you just pulling these rights out of your ass?

    I hope he has a conceal-carry permit for that. Just don’t ask where he’d be pulling it from.

  223. says

    This reaction you keep talking about, this fear and panic, and disgust or distrust…this negative thing about seeing someone with a weapon peaceably going about their day, even exchanging polite smiles…

    You automatically trust people who smile at you? I guess it is a culturally-programmed way of communicating good intentions, whatever one’s actual intentions are.

    This thing about liberals being “afraid of guns” shows up in every single discussion about open-carry that I’ve seen so far. And there probably some people who are afraid of the gun itself. Me, I’m more inclined to be cautious around people who think they need to carry a tool for killing with them everywhere. It’s the person, and their perception of the world, that gives me reason to steer clear.

    Again, cars, hammers, pocketknives, pens, and cans of paint or whatever, need to be misused if you want to apply them for violence. But violence is the purpose, the correct use, of a gun. They’re made for it. And you brought this to my store… why? Because you see bad guys in every shadow? Yeah, thanks, but I didn’t ask you to come to my store and play hero, and I really don’t need your business. That’s what Target is saying.

    SabreKGB does sound very reasonable. But sounding reasonable is a rhetorical trick; anyone can learn it. It isn’t the same thing as actually making sense. And yet the person afflicted by this ballistic fetish actually feels normal, and everyone else is weird.

    I’ve decided the open-carry debate violates the law of Thermodynamics, at least in this country. Connect a generator to it as it goes round and round, and you have unlimited energy.

  224. Menyambal says

    Raging Bee, I do agree with you that a militia has to follow regulations. But I do not get the second part of the Second from “An order-following militia being … “. That doesn’t lead to the right of the people, directly. It does, however get there in the sense that a militia accustomed to following orders requires that the people have tne right to serve, and to get used to taking orders.

    And that does tie to my understanding.

    See, the battlefield techniques of the time were, for infantry, musketry platoons maneuvering and firing as a unit. Without lots of practice, it was an armed gang, with discipline, it was a mobile machine gun. Loading a musket required 20 seconds of complex movement, moving as a group took coordination. Practice, and lots of it, was the big factor, having live ammo to practice with was also key.

    The militia had to clock in lots of time, until they moved like clockwork. The officers would clock each sequence to see if they were getting better. The militiamen had to move in time, together, and keep time, and make time for more drill time. And the name was of the most popular clock of the time …. was “Regulator”.

    I am not saying the clock gave the name, I am saying that “regulated” meant timed … and drilled and musket-platoon trained. And also following orders to load and fire and turn and march, and also obeying regulations, including regulations to do marching drill all morning and firing drill all afternoon.

    A badly-regulated militia platoon was a suicidal target. A well-regulated militia platoon was able to fire three times a minute, and to march, turn, wheel, form line, form square, and to charge, to retreat under fire and to win on a battlefield. It wasn’t just able to follow regulations, it was able to follow orders under fire, and execute those orders quickly and precisely. It was the power hitter of the time, and it took time and timing to get that good.

    It took practice, and the best way to get that practice was for the people to be able to drill at their own towns, and to keep the state-issued arms they needed to practice with in those towns, and to bear those arms against the enemy in times of war.

    That’s my case, and it needs a bit of polish. I also like it because it emphasizes the uselessness of guns of the time.

    It took a team of experts to make a musket anything more than a very expensive and stinky stick. Seriously, a man on a horse with a sword could hang about out of accurate range, and if the man with the gun fired, ride in and kill him before he could reload. The guns of the time were so crap that most folks would have opted for a pointed stick. They were also hella expensive, as they were hand-crafted, one at a time.

    If, and I repeat IF, the intent was to allow individuals to own and carry guns, it would have meant a few rich folks having one feeble shot if the weather was good and they had been careful in lugging around their weapon, and if the person they were shooting at was patient. Modern, cheap, accurate, powerful, dependable, fast multi-shot weapons are so incredibly different that, well, a guy on a horse would try to ride away, but wouldn’t get far.

    The intent was to have an effective people’s army, through lots of well-regulated drill.

  225. MattP (must mock his crappy brain) says

    @ sabrekgb, 220
    1) As mentioned in #131, the part about Australia’s decent gun control legislation… Yes, I am in favor of yearly mandatory gun safety courses and qualification examinations for ‘Genuine Reason’ (hunters / large animal control, security officers, active members of club-based target shooting – all of which take place on clearly designated private property or performed by government officers/agents in public parks) licenses that automatically expire and mandatory weapon registration, just like we require driver’s licenses, driving and vision/health tests, and vehicle registration. Do you drive a car on public sidewalks or through the greenspace in public parks? No, you drive on the clearly marked roads or off-road within private property. Carry your weapons on designated private property, or keep them very well secured inside your home or vehicle.

    2) No, it does not matter to me whether it is open or concealed. Someone with a loaded gun in public is a threat to all those in the vicinity. No different than if it were a bomb or a sword, as they are all tools with a sole purpose: to kill and maim. Carrying a deadly weapon in public is a danger to all, and I include armed police as being a danger (sometimes bigger than any other, e.g. that former deputy from #131, California under Gov. Reagan). Complete disarmament would unfortunately still require a small, temporary, well trained, publicly accountable (complaints must be investigated by open and independent criminal prosecutors, not some toothless, closed-door committee of cops and allies) police unit for responding to violent incidents involving deadly weapons until proliferation and transportation of those weapons between jurisdictions subsided.

  226. says

    ” Wilcox’ actions were heroic, unfortunately he was taken by surprise, just like the two armed and uniformed police killed the same day by those people.”

    Wilcox’x INTENT may have been heroic, his actions were precipitate, intemperate and, ultimately, futile. He didn’t check to see if there was anyone behind him who might be a danger or an unintended target of the OTHER shooter. Not smart.

    In addition to getting himself killed, he offered the bad guys another weapon.

  227. D. C. Sessions says

    Replace “gun” with “bomb vest” in all of the above and see how it reads.

    I did, and if nothing else it’s fit fare for the Onion.

  228. EnlightenmentLiberal says

    @Raging Bee

    They did that for a damn good reason: Catholics and Protestants were fighting a bitter bloody protracted civil/religious war; so trying to disarm one faction or the other made perfect sense. The English common law you speak of is nothing but a compromise between two sides when neither of them could win; and it worked mostly because both sides just got tired of endless fighting. None of that justifies, or creates, an unlimited right to own guns in any part of the British Empire.

    You seem to be confused. I am not justifying the second amendment. I am not defending the second amendment. I am not saying having the second amendment is a good idea.

    I am defending the clear legislative history, jurisprudence, case law, rule of law, etc., on the second amendment. That history lesson you just gave is completely irrelevant. I get it that you think gun rights are a bad idea. That doesn’t matter for the purpose of the conversation I’m having.

    I’m having a conversation where the Protestants and Catholics very, very much thought it was a good idea that they should be armed, and that this is a large basis of the American second amendment. The right to keep and bear arms was a non-controversial part of the common law and the understood rights of being a British citizen at the time.

    You are right that it does not morally justify gun rights. You are flat out wrong on the other point – it very much informs our jurisprudence of the law as it stands.

    Further correction: the Founders understood that circumstances would most likely change, and keep on changing, after they were dead; and that future generations’ application of the law in the real world would have to change with it.

    They would agree, and then they would say that if the law needs to be changed, then change it. Don’t pretend the law means something else. Don’t destroy the rule of law.

    Those two words are not synonymous today, and I have a hard time believing they were synonymous back then either.

    Do you not understand what an idiomatic expression is? Come on, it’s been two hundred years. Of course language changes.

    A “militia,” like an army, police department or any other armed security force, is, by definition, a hierarchical organization dedicated to a specific set of objectives, and bound by specific rules and regulations, in which members are required to obey orders and comply with rules, otherwise they get kicked out or otherwise punished.

    That’s not what the militia was. It’s not “a militia”. It’s “the militia”. The president has the power to call forth the militia. The second amendment talks about the militia. The militia was not a hierarchical organization. You cannot be kicked out of the militia. In many ways, the militia is synonymous with the people. The militia then, as it is defined today, was simply all able bodied men. Ex:
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Militia_%28United_States%29

    The reserve militia[3] are part of the unorganized militia defined by the Militia Act of 1903 as consisting of every able-bodied man of at least 17 and under 45 years of age who is not a member of the National Guard or Naval Militia.

    @Menyambal

    The body of the Constitution forbids standing armies, and say the states will supply arms to the militias.

    I am very familiar with this offhand. However, from my minimal research, it seems that you are wrong. The text does not forbid standing armies. In fact, the federalists argued strongly that they should not cripple the federal government with such a restriction. Instead, the federalists argued that they should give more oversight to the congress and require that all funding for the standing army should be re-approved every two years. This was another no-brainer appeasement gesture given to the anti-federalists.

    Enlightenment Liberal is wrong in almost everything else, though.

    Care to be specific?

    The Second Amendment does not say “citizen” or “person” or “own” or “gun” or “carry”. It says “A well regulated militia being necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed.” The militia is for state security, the people of the state have a right to serve in it, and to make it a good one.

    Odd, and here I was, a native English reader, and I thought “people” was the plural of “person”. Similarly, I thought “own” was mostly synonymous with “keep”. I’m also scratching my head for another possible meaning of “arm” in context which does not include “gun”. What the fuck are you talking about?

  229. EnlightenmentLiberal says

    @Menyambal

    and to keep the state-issued arms they needed to practice with in those towns, and to bear those arms against the enemy in times of war.

    One other point. IIRC, many states at the time of the writing of the second amendment had laws requiring people to own guns for their militia duty. They were not state issued. Of course, IIRC, many of those same states had many exemptions for militia duty. Not that it matters, because it’s a right of the people, not a right of active members in militia training.

  230. EnlightenmentLiberal says

    @sabrekgb
    IIRC, suicides only account for about half of gun deaths in the US. (Wikipedia informs me that it’s higher.) That still leaves a lot of other gun deaths. Wikipedia says about 11,000 a year gun homicides. That’s a lot. Quick fact-checking finds about on the order of 3,000 drownings per year in the US. That says our society is not falling apart at the seams from guns, but we should still consider gun violence (and accidental drownings) a serious problem which we should try to do something about.

    I’m sure someone is going to object to an argument i didn’t make. I’m sure someone is going to read that as somehow saying that if gun homicides are less than drowning, then it doesn’t matter, or that swimming serves a legitimate purpose and guns do not, or something. I said none of those things.

  231. EnlightenmentLiberal says

    Correction: “I am not very familiar with this offhand. [...]“

  232. Menyambal says

    Section. 8.

    The Congress shall have Power To …provide for the common Defence …

    To raise and support Armies, but no Appropriation of Money to that Use shall be for a longer Term than two Years;

    To provide and maintain a Navy;

    To make Rules for the Government and Regulation of the land and naval Forces;

    To provide for calling forth the Militia to execute the Laws of the Union, suppress Insurrections and repel Invasions;

    To provide for organizing, arming, and disciplining, the Militia, and for governing such Part of them as may be employed in the Service of the United States, reserving to the States respectively, the Appointment of the Officers, and the Authority of training the Militia according to the discipline prescribed by Congress;

    I get that Congress supplies arms to the militia from that last paragraph. Muskets were frakking expensive, rifles were more so, and cannons outrageous.

    I get that the armed militia was not intended to allow armed citizens to defend themselves from their government, from the bit about suppressing insurrections with the militia. That concept is some NRA bullshit. See the Whiskey Rebellion.

    I see that the Navy was permanent, but armies were to be raised when needed, and money, the only requirement, was only for two years. That sounds like mercenaries to me.

    The Second Amendment says that a militia is needed, not that it is an adjunct to the army. Militia was first, army was bought.

    I don’t see that militia is just any man of age. I see militia as a federal-armed, locally-trained, state-officered citizen army. Like the National Guard or the Swiss Army, or the Israelis.

    I see “the people” as the phrase opposed to “the government”. It doesn’t mean every individual citizen personally, it means the body politic, the citizenry as a whole, the people as represented, and generally everybody, not just the white men. The Constitution started off with “We the people …”, but not every damn person in the country wrote it.

    Or do you think that every individual citizen has the militia duty that gives them the right to bear arms?

    The gun nuts have to extrapolate from militia to individual gun ownership, or ignore the militia, or fantasize that the government meant to arm the people against itself, or, at least crazy, that men good with guns were once needed to reduce militia training time.

    I say that the Constitution describes a citizen army, called militia, and the Second makes it clear that it will be a good one because the citizens can keep themselves highly trained.

  233. throwaway, never proofreads, every post a gamble says

    I didn’t say anything about seatbelts.

    Big whoop? You or one of those ideologues earlier in the thread, sorry I haven’t been following too closely, mentioned something about trusting other drivers who may be malicious. You’re saying your gun is like a protection against those malicious people. Ergo, your gun is your safety-belt. That happens to kill people outside of your vehicle. I thought what I meant was clear enough. Trusting people with cars is necessary for commerce, social lives, errands, etc. Much more useful than some idiot thinking the rare circumstance of being able to combat an armed assailant supersedes all risk imposed upon those around them for every moment they have their firearm with them in public.

  234. Tsu Dho Nimh says

    Also, it’s just anecdote, but i’ll toss it out there: This reaction you keep talking about, this fear and panic, and disgust or distrust…this negative thing about seeing someone with a weapon peaceably going about their day, even exchanging polite smiles…I don’t see it.

    Of course you don’t. You seem unable to see anything except the glorious exercise of your supposedly constitutional right to carry a weapon.

    What you can’t see, the “ignore that crazy fucker and quietly get the heck away from him” thoughts. Followed by a quiet admonition to the kids, :”Timmy, head for the car, NOW”.

  235. says

    Don’t pretend the law means something else. Don’t destroy the rule of law.

    Where have I ever “pretended the law means something else?” And which SCOTUS decision “destroyed the rule of law?” You sound like just about every other reactionary crying about “judicial activism” when some law he likes is ruled unconstitutional.

    That’s not what the militia was. It’s not “a militia”. It’s “the militia”. The president has the power to call forth the militia. The second amendment talks about the militia. The militia was not a hierarchical organization. You cannot be kicked out of the militia. In many ways, the militia is synonymous with the people. The militia then, as it is defined today, was simply all able bodied men.

    For purposes of Constitutional interpretation, “militia” has to be taken as a general phrase intended to mean whatever security forces the people choose to organize at any given time to respond to whatever threat they see. And no, it doesn’t just mean “all able-bodied men;” it meant an organized group that was “well-regulated.” If you interpret the word to mean ONLY what it meant to the Founders in 1787, then the word, and every part of the Constitution in which it appears, becomes meaningless to all succeeding generations.

  236. says

    Care to be specific?

    We already were, in the comments in which we refute all of your assertions. They’re still up there, so you can read them and get all the specifics you want.

  237. EnlightenmentLiberal says

    @Menyambal

    I get that Congress supplies arms to the militia from that last paragraph. Muskets were frakking expensive, rifles were more so, and cannons outrageous.

    Come on man. Do your research.

    http://archive.adl.org/mwd/faq3.html
    1792 Uniform Militia Act

    That every citizen so enrolled and notified, shall, within 6 months thereafter, provide himself with a good musket or firelock, a sufficient bayonet and belt, two spare flints, a and a knapsack [etc] … and shall appear so armed, accoutred and provided, when called out to exercise, or into service..and that from and after five years from the passing of this Act, all muskets for arming the militia as herein required shall be of bores sufficient for balls of the eighteenth part of a pound. And every citizen so enrolled, and providing himself with the arms, ammunition and accoutrements required as aforesaid, shall hold the same exempted from all suits, distresses, executions or sales, for debt or for the payment of taxes.

    At least their gun and ammo purchases are tax exempt.

    @Menyambal

    I get that the armed militia was not intended to allow armed citizens to defend themselves from their government, from the bit about suppressing insurrections with the militia. That concept is some NRA bullshit. See the Whiskey Rebellion.

    Simply wrong. This is childish reasoning. “The founders put down one rebellion, and thus the founders intended that all rebellions should be put down.” Let me paraphrase their recent history from a slightly biased perspective.

    Terrorists in one of our territories disrupted commercial trade, destroying millions of dollars of private product. They are creating fear among the population. They are arming themselves. They control large swathes of the population, but can these ruffians rule it effectively? Later, these same terrorists overthrow the legitimate and internationally recognized government for highly questionable reasons by the standards of the day.

    Again, read your Federalist. It cannot possibly be more clear.
    avalon.law.yale.edu/18th_century/fed46.asp

    Extravagant as the supposition is, let it however be made. Let a regular army, fully equal to the resources of the country, be formed; and let it be entirely at the devotion of the federal government; still it would not be going too far to say, that the State governments, with the people on their side, would be able to repel the danger. The highest number to which, according to the best computation, a standing army can be carried in any country, does not exceed one hundredth part of the whole number of souls; or one twenty-fifth part of the number able to bear arms. This proportion would not yield, in the United States, an army of more than twenty-five or thirty thousand men. To these would be opposed a militia amounting to near half a million of citizens with arms in their hands, officered by men chosen from among themselves, fighting for their common liberties, and united and conducted by governments possessing their affections and confidence. It may well be doubted, whether a militia thus circumstanced could ever be conquered by such a proportion of regular troops. Those who are best acquainted with the last successful resistance of this country against the British arms, will be most inclined to deny the possibility of it. Besides the advantage of being armed, which the Americans possess over the people of almost every other nation, the existence of subordinate governments, to which the people are attached, and by which the militia officers are appointed, forms a barrier against the enterprises of ambition, more insurmountable than any which a simple government of any form can admit of. Notwithstanding the military establishments in the several kingdoms of Europe, which are carried as far as the public resources will bear, the governments are afraid to trust the people with arms. And it is not certain, that with this aid alone they would not be able to shake off their yokes. But were the people to possess the additional advantages of local governments chosen by themselves, who could collect the national will and direct the national force, and of officers appointed out of the militia, by these governments, and attached both to them and to the militia, it may be affirmed with the greatest assurance, that the throne of every tyranny in Europe would be speedily overturned in spite of the legions which surround it.

    @Menyambal

    I see that the Navy was permanent, but armies were to be raised when needed, and money, the only requirement, was only for two years. That sounds like mercenaries to me.

    Have you done any research on this topic at all? Or are you just talking out of your ass?

    The founders, federalists and anti-federalists, would both agree that standing armies often were made of mercenaries at the time. Read the Federalists cited above for such language. That’s one big reason why they feared standing armies. Again, that’s also why the anti-federalists opposed allowing congress to even raise an army, and the federalists thought that was a stupid limitation that would cripple the federal government. The federalists decided to throw the anti-federalists a bone and required that the congress pass a new law every two years for funding any standing army.

    @Menyambal

    I don’t see that militia is just any man of age. I see militia as a federal-armed, locally-trained, state-officered citizen army. Like the National Guard or the Swiss Army, or the Israelis.

    Come on man. I provided several citations to the contrary. I’m sorry that language changes, and our understanding of effective warfare changes. That doesn’t change the language and understanding of warfare at the time, and that is what should be controlling in our jurisprudence of such laws.

    @Menyambal

    I see “the people” as the phrase opposed to “the government”. It doesn’t mean every individual citizen personally, it means the body politic, the citizenry as a whole, the people as represented, and generally everybody, not just the white men. The Constitution started off with “We the people …”, but not every damn person in the country wrote it.

    Try to apply that kind of reasoning to the first amendment, fourth amendment, and the ninth. That’s just the list for skimming the first 10 amendments. Bet there’s more.

    See, this is my problem. Your completely idiotic jurisprudence would gut other constitutional protections, and you are too stupid and shallow to realize it, even though it would take just a modicum of thought to realize how wrong you are.

    @Menyambal

    Or do you think that every individual citizen has the militia duty that gives them the right to bear arms?

    Not exactly. Can you not read? I’ve explained my position several times already.

    The law (second amendment) has a introductory phrase. It is prose. It describes the intent. They say that a well trained militia is necessary to a free state. Thus the right of all persons to own guns shall not be infringed. (The “thus” is implied.) In other words, the law states that an armed population is the only effective way to get an effective militia, the militia is necessary for a free state, and thus the people shall be armed.

    The Federalist is again clear.
    http://avalon.law.yale.edu/18th_century/fed29.asp
    (Bolding added)

    “The project of disciplining all the militia of the United States is as futile as it would be injurious, if it were capable of being carried into execution. A tolerable expertness in military movements is a business that requires time and practice. It is not a day, or even a week, that will suffice for the attainment of it. To oblige the great body of the yeomanry, and of the other classes of the citizens, to be under arms for the purpose of going through military exercises and evolutions, as often as might be necessary to acquire the degree of perfection which would entitle them to the character of a well-regulated militia, would be a real grievance to the people, and a serious public inconvenience and loss. It would form an annual deduction from the productive labor of the country, to an amount which, calculating upon the present numbers of the people, would not fall far short of the whole expense of the civil establishments of all the States. To attempt a thing which would abridge the mass of labor and industry to so considerable an extent, would be unwise: and the experiment, if made, could not succeed, because it would not long be endured. Little more can reasonably be aimed at, with respect to the people at large, than to have them properly armed and equipped; and in order to see that this be not neglected, it will be necessary to assemble them once or twice in the course of a year.

    @Raging Bee

    For purposes of Constitutional interpretation, “militia” has to be taken as a general phrase intended to mean whatever security forces the people choose to organize at any given time to respond to whatever threat they see.

    The official guide to understanding the US constitution, the Federalist, disagrees with you. See above.

    @Raging Bee

    And no, it doesn’t just mean “all able-bodied men;” it meant an organized group that was “well-regulated.” If you interpret the word to mean ONLY what it meant to the Founders in 1787, then the word, and every part of the Constitution in which it appears, becomes meaningless to all succeeding generations.

    Again, the Federalist disagrees with you. The congress also disagrees with you when they passed the militia act of 1792, the militia act of 1903, and so on. You are the one sticking your head in the sand and pretending that the law means something else, and I will have none of that.

  238. EnlightenmentLiberal says

    Also, about standing armies. The Federalist is again clear in n 46 that the federal congress has the power to raise and maintain a standing army for an indefinite period of time.

    The only refuge left for those who prophesy the downfall of the State governments is the visionary supposition that the federal government may previously accumulate a military force for the projects of ambition. The reasonings contained in these papers must have been employed to little purpose indeed, if it could be necessary now to disprove the reality of this danger. That the people and the States should, for a sufficient period of time, elect an uninterupted succession of men ready to betray both; that the traitors should, throughout this period, uniformly and systematically pursue some fixed plan for the extension of the military establishment; that the governments and the people of the States should silently and patiently behold the gathering storm, and continue to supply the materials, until it should be prepared to burst on their own heads, must appear to every one more like the incoherent dreams of a delirious jealousy, or the misjudged exaggerations of a counterfeit zeal, than like the sober apprehensions of genuine patriotism.

    The above Federalist quote rests firmly on the clear (but implicit) premise that it is within the stated power of the federal congress to maintain a standing army for longer tan two years. It mentions “for ambition” to differentiate it from legitimate purposes of maintaining that standing army. It also mentions “elect an uninterupted succession of men ready to betray both”, which clearly references the requirement that all standing army funding must be periodically re-approved by the federal congress.

  239. EnlightenmentLiberal says

    One other point I just noticed upon re-reading.

    The militia is for state security, the people of the state have a right to serve in it, and to make it a good one.

    You are getting it completely wrong. The people are the militia. There is no right to “serve” in it, as that implies the militia is a select corps of people. Of course the congress has the power to decide to regularly train only part of the militia – again as the Federalist makes clear (cited above).

    Also, you get it completely wrong when you say that the militia is only for defending against foreign threats. Again, see the Federalist where he talks about a fight between the states and the federal government, and how important the people aka the militia is to ensuring freedom. I’m not quite sure on this last point – I’ll have to check – but when it says “security of a free state”, they are not just talking about safety from foreign invasion. They are using the lofty idea of a free state, which excludes tyranny as well. “The security of a free state” is colorful language which includes the security, the safety, of having a free state, aka being free from tyranny. Regardless of the word games we can play over the exact text, this conclusion is rather clear if you read the Federalist (cited above).

  240. says

    Simply wrong. This is childish reasoning. “The founders put down one rebellion, and thus the founders intended that all rebellions should be put down.”

    There’s nothing “childish” about it: the Founders created a certain kind of government, so naturally they’d want that kind of government to be able to put down rebellions against it. What’s the point of having a certain kind of government and set of laws, if ti can be overthrown by the next bunch of gangsters, bigots or jihadists?

    The fact that you call this basic bit of common sense “childish” says a lot about your honesty, EL.

    The official guide to understanding the US constitution, the Federalist, disagrees with you. See above.

    You’re bluffing again, and I’m calling your bluff: Please quote the Federalist bits where they explicitly say they want their democratic government, and the rights enshrined in their Constitution, to be vulnerable to overthrow by anyone.

    And regardless of what the Federalist papers said, it’s just plain common sense that a democratic government has to be able to keep itself from being overthrown, otherwise democracy, and the Constitution, mean nothing. You’ve said nothing that refutes that, and neither, I’m sure, did any of the Founders.

    Again, the Federalist disagrees with you. The congress also disagrees with you when they passed the militia act of 1792, the militia act of 1903, and so on. You are the one sticking your head in the sand and pretending that the law means something else, and I will have none of that.

    No quotes, no case. You’re bluffing again.

    Ed, I open carry my sidearm into my bank all the time. It is perfectly legal and has never even been commented upon.

    Does your carrying a gun serve a purpose, or is it just a fashion statement?

  241. says

    You are getting it completely wrong. The people are the militia.

    No, moron, they’re not. Children, the old and the sick don’t get to participate in a militia, and neither do criminals, lunatics, and other people who have proven they cannot be trusted to comply with regs, obey lawful orders, or do their jobs.

  242. D. C. Sessions says

    Bee, you’re forgetting the most important group that cannot be part of the militia: slaves. One of the great worries of the anti-Federalists was that the National government would enroll slaves in the militia if there weren’t provisions against it. Also that the National government might march the militia of, say, Virginia off to some distant location leaving the Commonwealth without the means to put down a slave rebellion.

    So, no, the militia was not “the people.”

  243. EnlightenmentLiberal says

    @Raging Bee

    What’s the point of having a certain kind of government and set of laws, if ti can be overthrown by the next bunch of gangsters, bigots or jihadists?

    Come on now. Have you no basic civics knowledge? Have you even read the Federalist? I even posted some relevant excerpts up-page.

    I am seriously asking you this. Did you read the Federalist quotes I cited above? Did you?

    Do I need to rephrase it in vocabulary and styles befitting that of a small child? I can do that: The old people who set up our government and police figured out that some people are bad, and those bad people might get control of the government and police by doing bad things like lying. The old people who set up our government very much wanted that not to happen. However, if it did happen, those old people very much wanted us to work together to make the bad people go away and take control of our government and police from the bad people.

    @Raging Bee

    And regardless of what the Federalist papers said,

    You just failed civics forever. The Federalist papers might as well be the official guide to the US constitution. During the ratification debates, they were treated as such, and informed everyone’s understanding of the intent and how the constitution worked.

    it’s just plain common sense that a democratic government has to be able to keep itself from being overthrown, otherwise democracy, and the Constitution, mean nothing. You’ve said nothing that refutes that, and neither, I’m sure, did any of the Founders.

    You do understand how we can say some revolts are unjustified, and some revolts are justified, yes?

    Earlier I mentioned your childish reasoning on this topic, and I explained the difference and the false dichotomy you were setting up. You seem incapable of recognizing this distinction. Let me try again. For example: The whiskey revolts, unjustified, and put down by the founders. The American war of independence, justified, and done by the founders.

    @Raging Bee

    You are getting it completely wrong. The people are the militia.

    No, moron, they’re not. Children, the old and the sick don’t get to participate in a militia, and neither do criminals, lunatics, and other people who have proven they cannot be trusted to comply with regs, obey lawful orders, or do their jobs.

    What’s your point? Children cannot vote either, don’t have free speech, freedom of assembly, and so on. I don’t see you complaining that the first amendment gives these rights to “the people”.

    Pull your head out of your ass, and start being consistent in your application of jurisprudence. Before you post your next idiotic rebuttal, take a moment and ask yourself “If the courts followed this rule for free speech rights, free assembly rights, and rights against unreasonable searches and seizures, would those rights emerge unharmed?”.

    You are now playing some rather pedantic and dishonest word games. When we say that the people have a right X, obviously that right may be taken away in prison. Similarly, when I say that the people are the militia, this is not saying that little children should be allowed to have guns.

    @D. C. Sessions

    So, no, the militia was not “the people.” [because slavery]

    This is like saying that “the people” didn’t have the right to free speech rights nor free assembly rights because slaves didn’t have free speech rights nor free assembly rights, and thus the first amendment does not guarantee an individual’s right to free speech nor free assembly. It’s completely dishonest. You should feel bad for writing that.

  244. says

    The guy who said the following…

    Similarly, the second amendment expressly codifies the interest balancing that someone’s right to own and carry a gun generally outweighs someone else’s right to be safe from gun violence.

    …is now saying _I_ fail civics? After that whopper was easily refuted by reference to the Constitution? That’s just fucking hilarious. EL, do you even take yourself seriously?

    I am seriously asking you this. Did you read the Federalist quotes I cited above? Did you?

    Yes, and I saw nothing in them that refutes anything I’ve said, or supports any of the nonsensical assertions you’ve made. If you really want to prove you’re so much smarter than me, here’s your chance: quote the specific parts that you think prove me wrong, and make a coherent and convincing case. I’m waiting…

    The Federalist papers might as well be the official guide to the US constitution.

    Actually, when interpreting the Constitution and deciding how it applies to this or that real-world situation (what I’m doing here, and what Federal judges do), the Federalist Papers are flatly trumped by relevant facts on the ground, common-sense analysis of the consequences of laws, relevant case-law and precedent, and, of course, the text of the Constitution itself. The Federalist papers are quite useful, of course, but far from a definitive guide, especially when we’re talking about present-day threats to our freedoms and social order.

    They most certainly do not trump basic common sense about what governments are and how they tend to work. My points that you’re hyperventilating about were based on common sense, and the text of the Constitution itself (which, unlike the Federalist Papers, actually has the force of law); so if you want to refute them, you have to do it with common sense, facts and reasoning, not reference to the Federalist papers, and certainly not with the empty bluffing arguments from authority I’m seeing from you here.

    Similarly, when I say that the people are the militia, this is not saying that little children should be allowed to have guns.

    Then what DOES it say? “The people” and “the militia” are not the same thing, as we both now seem to agree. So it is, at best, meaningless to say “The people are the militia.”

  245. says

    This is like saying that “the people” didn’t have the right to free speech rights nor free assembly rights because slaves didn’t have free speech rights nor free assembly rights, and thus the first amendment does not guarantee an individual’s right to free speech nor free assembly.

    No, it’s not like saying any of that incoherent bullshit at all.

  246. sabrekgb says

    @228 Tsu Dho Nimh

    So the lesson I take away from that incident is “shoot first and let the coroner sort them out”. And that means shoot the person with the visible gun and everyone with them just in case they are the backup. As soon as you see them walk into the store.

    Then i think we can all agree that it is better you continue to go unarmed. The lesson I take from that is that intervening in bad situations to help can be dangerous, even fatal. I assume Wilcox knew that as well and did it anyway.

    @241 democommie

    Wilcox’x INTENT may have been heroic, his actions were precipitate, intemperate and, ultimately, futile. He didn’t check to see if there was anyone behind him who might be a danger or an unintended target of the OTHER shooter. Not smart.

    Ok, his intent was heroic, however we want to phrase that. I think his actions were closer to solution than precipitate…but, yes, ultimately futile. He did not, however, cause any harm to other innocents and was absolutely correct in identifying his target. His failure is a good lesson for everyone, but what his actions most definitely are not: an example against good guys having guns in public.

    Also…holy shit! That may be the first response you’ve had to me that wasn’t self-deludedly sanctimonious and full of weird intentional misspellings. I doubt you’ll make it a habit, but good on you for this post at least.

    @229

    Your confidence, or is it just arrogance, is based on something that is completely conjectural. Guy runs around the corner and points a gun at you, you have a split second to draw, aim and fire–in a crowd?

    You didn’t read the story. They were following him (knowing he had just killed someone), he drew a weapon and turned on them. He didn’t jump them from around a corner. Even if he had, hitting 9 bystanders is not acceptable…aren’t we supposed to expect more of police training? Add to that the fact that they shouldn’t have had to draw, their weapons should have been at the low ready.

    I don’t know the biography of the two officers in question, but i’m honestly curious if growing up in NY and having never touched, let alone fired, a weapon before becoming a police officer might not make them worse at it. I have no data for this, just an idle thought. I wonder if someone has looked into the question. To Google!

    Raging Bee:

    Your current chew toy, Enshrouded Liar

    -democommie

    Ha! You must not be reading the same thread, because it’s very obvious that Bee is under several gross misapprehensions and Enlightenment Liberal is schooling her well. I have popcorn out for this.

    Also, i notice you keep feeling the need to distort people’s pseudonyms…is this related to your “Z” thing? I’m honestly curious why you do it, since it seems childish. I know it’s not just you, since i’m not exactly new to the internet, i just am surprised because i assumed the readership on this blog would skew a bit to the right of the bell curve.

  247. sabrekgb says

    @231 Raging Bee

    And let’s dispense with the bogus comparisons to knives, cars and baseball bats — if you can’t or won’t see the obvious logistical/tactical differences between those and guns, then you have nothing to contribute to this conversation. Here’s a little hint: guns kill more quickly, and have far greater range, than any of those other things.

    You missed the rather limited point of my mention of cars, knives, and baseball bats. I’m under no misapprehension as to guns being the better all-around weapon. Though, to be fair, most cars have about a 400 mile range, whereas most guns are only a mile, max.

    Suicides are included for a very good reason: guns make suicide both much easier, and much more likely to succeed, so it is very reasonable to conclude that many, if not most, gun-suicides would not have happened at all but for the availability of a gun. Clearly, sabrekgb, suicides don’t sadden you enough to make you see this rather obvious and relevant fact.

    Gun suicides and actual gun violence, are two separate issues…not making differentiation between the two sets of numbers only muddies the waters when discussing policy. If either is relevant for a given argument, they should be used, but the way they are often combined is incorrect.

    You are right, though; while suicide saddens me, it is not a sufficient reason to restrict everyone’s gun rights.

    @233 Menyambal

    So we have a right to kill ourselves, even though it is nowhere written down and everywhere forbidden…SabreKGB, are you just pulling these rights out of your ass?

    Do you not think we have a right to bodily autonomy? We can have that discussion, if you like, but i thought it was a pretty common belief. If you do have bodily autonomy, if you own your self, then suicide is a natural (if rather extreme) extension of that right.

    @238 georgewiman

    But violence is the purpose, the correct use, of a gun. They’re made for it. And you brought this to my store… why? Because you see bad guys in every shadow? Yeah, thanks, but I didn’t ask you to come to my store and play hero, and I really don’t need your business. That’s what Target is saying.

    Yes, it is, and yes, they are (mostly). Why…? Because sometimes violence is necessary…usually in response to other violence. If you (or Target) don’t want my gun (or my money) in your store, that’s completely your choice, and i will abide by it. Put up a sign and i won’t go in and buy things from you. The sign will stop me…the sign probably won’t stop the guy who intends to shoot up the place.

    @242 D.C. Sessions

    Replace “gun” with “bomb vest” in all of the above and see how it reads.

    I did, and if nothing else it’s fit fare for the Onion.

    If you replace it with “13 inch veiny black plastic dong” it’s pretty humorous too…doesn’t really enlighten the conversation though.

    @248 throwaway

    sorry I haven’t been following too closely…

    First indication that you’re about to misunderstand something…

    You’re saying your gun is like a protection against those malicious people. Ergo, your gun is your safety-belt. That happens to kill people outside of your vehicle. I thought what I meant was clear enough.

    That is in no way what i am saying. What you meant was not clear, because you’re not clear on what i said. Go back and read the exchange, if you care, and pick up on more than just the words “gun” and “car”. I know it’s easier to just skim and construct the rest of the sentence from your imagination, but you’re bound to miss nuance that way.

    @249 Tsu Dho Nimh

    What you can’t see, the “ignore that crazy fucker and quietly get the heck away from him” thoughts. Followed by a quiet admonition to the kids, :”Timmy, head for the car, NOW”.

    Like I said, i’d see something like that…funny enough, no kiddos bolting for the door. Maybe it’s just me, or maybe it’s where i live, but this panic simply doesn’t happen like you seem to think it would. Most people, it seems, simply don’t care.

  248. sabrekgb says

    @234 zmidponk

    As such, they should be treated differently to any other tools for that reason by anyone who views maiming and/or killing as being wrong.

    This, right here, i think might be the crux. I don’t see maiming and/or killing to be wrong if necessary to defend ones’ self or others. In such a situation, killing can be a morally good action. The hinge is not on the harm itself, but the justified (or not) nature of it. As such, a tool capable of causing that harm is useful for a very good cause, when used in a justified manner. Because the tool has a legitimate purpose that i see as morally good, i do not imbue it with the same (darkness?) that i think you might. Surely, it can be used for bad, but it can be used for good as well…the tool is morally neutral (and the possession of it, by extension), it is intent and action effected with it that matter.

    Does this make sense to you? Hopefully you can understand my thinking as i’ve laid it out. By what i quoted, would it be fair to take it that you think maiming/killing is an action that is always wrong?

    It’s not the wild west because you’re not following your own rule about having ‘excess of force with those who would do me harm’. I actually outright asked you if you were therefore admitting that rule was wrong.

    It’s a preference, not a rule. If i was in a fight, of course i’d prefer to have an excess of force. However, I don’t know what the day will bring when i step out of my house in the morning, and i never intend to get into a situation where i might need to draw my weapon. So, i compromise with my carry, a maxima of comfort, size, price, effectiveness, and other factors.

    Why do you open carry instead of simply carry, then? From what you’ve said here, it does nothing to enhance your safety, or the safety of others, which is your given reasons for doing it, as it utterly fails to show any kind of implied threat of force to anyone considering doing you or others harm. Instead, all it does is make you a target, with the ‘dissuading effect’ you were talking about being non-existent. Either that, or your answer is being somewhat economical with the truth.

    I gave my open-carry reasons above @43. I disagree that it doesn’t enhance my safety or that of others, but that’s a very difficult thing to quantify. I think it does have a dissuading effect (as any open carry weapon would, katana or firearm) against attack in more situations than it would make you an initial target. My answer to your hypothetical was as honest as i could be, thinking it through from my desk…if you have a question about a specific detail, feel free to ask about it.

  249. says

    sabreKGB:

    I’m under no misapprehension as to guns being the better all-around weapon. Though, to be fair, most cars have about a 400 mile range, whereas most guns are only a mile, max.

    *Facepalm*

    Of course you’re gonna say you are joking, but that’s seriously idiotic.

    sometimes violence is necessary…usually in response to other violence. If you (or Target) don’t want my gun (or my money) in your store, that’s completely your choice, and i will abide by it. Put up a sign and i won’t go in and buy things from you. The sign will stop me…the sign probably won’t stop the guy who intends to shoot up the place.

    Still waiting for it to dawn on you that they didn’t ask you to come to their store and play hero. You and your gun-fondling friends are as likely to make things worse as better. While providing perfect cover for the shooter to walk in the store with any weapons whatever.

    I don’t know the biography of the two officers in question, but i’m honestly curious if growing up in NY and having never touched, let alone fired, a weapon before becoming a police officer might not make them worse at it. I have no data for this, just an idle thought. I wonder if someone has looked into the question.

    I did look up their bios when the incident happened. They have many years on the force, training, qualification, and good records. But hey, if only they’d lived in a gun-soaked culture somewhere and shot whomp-rats when they were children! Maybe police should all be recruited from the ranks of ultra-disciplined and trained ex special forces, who can execute a perfect double-tap while under fire. Would they find police salaries and working conditions attractive?

  250. says

    Though, to be fair, most cars have about a 400 mile range, whereas most guns are only a mile, max.

    You know as well as I do that you are deliberately misrepresenting my point about range, which was that it’s much harder to get out of range of a bullet than that of an oncoming car.

    Gun suicides and actual gun violence, are two separate issues…

    No, they are not. Both are violence facilitated by the availability of guns. Unless, of course, you imagine suicide as a peaceful and benign act, in which case you should just shut up and stay out of serious adult conversations about issues more important than your convenience.

    Do you not think we have a right to bodily autonomy? We can have that discussion, if you like, but i thought it was a pretty common belief.

    It has already been explained to you, in plain English, why we intervene to stop (or at least delay) suicide. The fact that you completely ignored what we said, once again shows what an uncaring idiot you are.

    You are right, though; while suicide saddens me, it is not a sufficient reason to restrict everyone’s gun rights.

    And yet again, you admit that you care more about (nonexistent) “gun rights” than about taking reasonable measures to protect innocent lives. Perhaps you should move to a place where more people share your priorities, like maybe Somalia or Afghanistan?

  251. says

    To oblige the great body of the yeomanry, and of the other classes of the citizens, to be under arms for the purpose of going through military exercises and evolutions, as often as might be necessary to acquire the degree of perfection which would entitle them to the character of a well-regulated militia, would be a real grievance to the people, and a serious public inconvenience and loss.

    So the Federalist is agreeing with what I said, which is that “the militia” is not all of the people, and in fact cannot be.

    Little more can reasonably be aimed at, with respect to the people at large, than to have them properly armed and equipped; and in order to see that this be not neglected, it will be necessary to assemble them once or twice in the course of a year.

    This is nothing more than a valid strategic/tactical calculation about how best to respond to the security-threats of that time. It does not contradict my original point that one of the tasks of a militia would be, where feasible at least, to keep dangerous weapons out of the hands of people who have shown that they cannot be trusted to use them for the common good, and to disarm people and groups who threaten “the security of a free state.”

    Besides the advantage of being armed, which the Americans possess over the people of almost every other nation…

    This is one bit where the Founders’ wisdom has got a bit obsolete: there are other peoples armed to the teeth like us, and it hasn’t really enhanced their liberties — and in the case of the US, sometimes those armed citizenry have been arrayed AGAINST the liberty of their fellow Americans.

    …the existence of subordinate governments, to which the people are attached, and by which the militia officers are appointed, forms a barrier against the enterprises of ambition…

    Okay, here we have the further admission that the militia is subordinate to elected governments and the law; which pretty strongly implies that its job is to uphold and comply with said law, suppress all attempts to overthrow it, and, again, disarm whoever threatens that social order.

    So yes, EL, I did read the bits you quoted. You still need to explain how they refute anything I’ve said. Bluff: called.

  252. sabrekgb says

    Of course you’re gonna say you are joking

    That’s because it is a joke (but still literally true, which is why it’s funny!), of course. I think it’s a pretty good one, too, but…your “mileage” may vary.

    Still waiting for it to dawn on you that they didn’t ask you to come to their store

    They opened for public business and didn’t say “no lawful gun carriers allowed”, that’s pretty much asking me to come to their store. At the least, it’s not asking me to not. It’s not an unreasonable philosophy to adopt: That which is not prohibited, is allowed.

    You…are as likely to make things worse as better

    I do not believe that to be the case.

    you are deliberately misrepresenting my point about range

    Nah, i’m making a joke :)

    It has already been explained to you, in plain English, why we intervene to stop (or at least delay) suicide. The fact that you completely ignored what we said, once again shows what an uncaring idiot you are.

    You completely dodged the bodily-autonomy question. I know why we intervene with suicides (at least, ones that are caused by mental illness and transient conditions), but that doesn’t take obviate the point.

    Also, there is a big difference between deciding to shoot yourself, vs deciding to shoot others who have done you no harm.

  253. says

    Why do i carry openly? Several reasons: 1) For educational purposes…

    Given the ignorance, dishonesty, and total disregard for other people’s rights and interests that you’ve shown throughout your comments here, your claim could well be a total fabrication, and isn’t worth the screen-space I read it on. Your “I’m educating the rest of you plebes with my gun” attitude has absolutely no credibility.

    I do not believe that to be the case.

    Your belief has no factual or rational basis, and is contradicted by lots of experience that you simply ignore. Kinda like a religious belief. Your refusal to even consider that you could do more harm than good with your precious gun, indicates that you’re no more concerned about the consequences of your actions than the criminals you’re waiting to shoot.

    You completely dodged the bodily-autonomy question.

    No, I didn’t; I explained why a potential suicide was an emergency situation in which that right has to be temporarily suspended, to prevent someone from being irreversibly harmed by an irrational decision.

    Also, there is a big difference between deciding to shoot yourself, vs deciding to shoot others who have done you no harm.

    Yes, but a common factor is that there are plenty of incidents in both of those categories that would not have happened if the perp didn’t have a gun at hand at the time.

  254. EnlightenmentLiberal says

    @sabrekgb
    About democommie. Let me give a brief introduction.

    He is reality-challenged in general. He and I have a long-running dispute over nuclear power in general. Obviously, I’m in favor of it for a plethora of reasons: Cost competitive. Cleanest option. Competitive for lowest CO2. Enough fuel already mined to last a thousand years with no further mining with some technologies (the IFR). Energy security. Which leads to less foreign wars. Which leads to far less money spent on foreign wars.

    democommie disputes all of these, cannot provide citations, ignores my citations, and to boot invents false quotes of me, and when called on it will not back down.

    On Raging Bee.
    He seems to be reality-challenged just on this one topic. I’m especially concerned because of possible spillover to other topics.

    @Raging Bee

    Bee, you’re forgetting the most important group that cannot be part of the militia: slaves. One of the great worries of the anti-Federalists was that the National government would enroll slaves in the militia if there weren’t provisions against it. Also that the National government might march the militia of, say, Virginia off to some distant location leaving the Commonwealth without the means to put down a slave rebellion.

    So, no, the militia was not “the people.”

    This is like saying that “the people” didn’t have the right to free speech rights nor free assembly rights because slaves didn’t have free speech rights nor free assembly rights, and thus the first amendment does not guarantee an individual’s right to free speech nor free assembly.

    No, it’s not like saying any of that incoherent bullshit at all.

    You will agree that “slaves did not have gun rights” is not an acceptable argument for the conclusion “the second amendment does not guarantee an individual right to keep and bear arms” for the reasons quoted above. And then you will apologize either for your dishonesty for the above post strongly implying such, or you will apologize for your posting above when you were not full possession of the facts – aka gross incompetence combined with a strong confirmation bias. Until then, I will not further engage with you on this issue. I try not to engage with blatantly dishonest or extremely incompetent people like yourself. It’s a waste of my time.

  255. D. C. Sessions says

    You…are as likely to make things worse as better

    I do not believe that to be the case.

    No one could possibly have expected that.

    However, what you believe is pretty low on the hierarchy of evidence. Out of however many tens or hundreds of thousands of times that an armed civilian enters a store (etc.) and a shooting ensues, some involve the clerk or a customer lying bleeding on the floor. Some involve the clerk pulling his own firearm and the malefactor lying bleeding on the floor. Some involve the clerk pulling his own firearm and a bystander lying bleeding on the floor. Some no doubt involve the Forces of Truth and Justice being defended and triumphant thanks to the intervention of a Lone Ranger. And still others involve the Lone Ranger showing up and doing more harm than good.

    There are so many of these events (every year, much less over the span of decades) that we can make a very good estimate of the odds for each outcome.

    The last time I looked, it wasn’t exactly a ringing endorsement of widespread firearms.

  256. says

    “Ok, his intent was heroic, however we want to phrase that. I think his actions were closer to solution than precipitate…but, yes, ultimately futile. He did not, however, cause any harm to other innocents and was absolutely correct in identifying his target.”

    Wrong.

    He did NOT correctly identify his target. He identified half of his target, the other half of the target killed him. After he was dead, his weapon was available to the shooters to use against other, unarmed people, so big fucking FAIL, all the way around.

  257. says

    ” Even if he had, hitting 9 bystanders is not acceptable…aren’t we supposed to expect more of police training? Add to that the fact that they shouldn’t have had to draw, their weapons should have been at the low ready.’

    As I said, previously, you don’t know wtf you’re talking about. You’re not the one who was faced by a person with a drawn gun. FWIW, moron, cops are NOT allowed to shoot people that they think are bad people, they have to follow the rules that you and your idiot gunzloonz palz don’t. You like to say that you’re better trained than they are but when you’re asked to provide proof you refuse. You’re training is, regardless of how much or how often, NOT the same thing. When you’ve successfully stopped a perp without killing him or anyone else unnecessarily, get back to me.

  258. sabrekgb says

    @272 democommie

    He did NOT correctly identify his target. He identified half of his target, the other half of the target killed him. After he was dead, his weapon was available to the shooters to use against other, unarmed people, so big fucking FAIL, all the way around.

    He did identify his target correctly, the guy he was concerned about was in fact the “bad guy”. Arguments were made on the other gun thread (and implied on this one) that people who are not police will be more likely to make errors with regards to identification of the “bad guy”. Data does not bear this out, and this particular instance is a data point against that as well. The guy wilcox was confronting was the bad guy. Wilcox did not have a full picture of the situation and missed an additional threat, but his error was not one that was going to result in him confronting an innocent person at gunpoint.

    As for his weapon being available to his attackers after his death…that’s pretty damn irrelevant. They were armed to begin with. Also, “the bad guy might kill me and get my gun” is not a good reason to just give up and be unarmed to start with. If the bad guy might kill you and take your gun, he might kill you anyway…better to fight than go meekly to the slaughter.

    Wilcox’ situation is a great example of why it is not a bad idea to be armed in public (or to have armed “good guys” sprinkled throughout a population). His death sucks, but it is not a validation of any of the arguments against carrying weapons, except for a slight reinforcement that confronting a “bad guy” or carrying openly might lead to being identified as a primary target. Even in that last case, since that’s a choice the carrier makes and the consequences fall on them directly, it’s not a sufficient reason to prohibit.

  259. zmidponk says

    sabrekgb #264:

    This, right here, i think might be the crux. I don’t see maiming and/or killing to be wrong if necessary to defend ones’ self or others. In such a situation, killing can be a morally good action. The hinge is not on the harm itself, but the justified (or not) nature of it. As such, a tool capable of causing that harm is useful for a very good cause, when used in a justified manner. Because the tool has a legitimate purpose that i see as morally good, i do not imbue it with the same (darkness?) that i think you might. Surely, it can be used for bad, but it can be used for good as well…the tool is morally neutral (and the possession of it, by extension), it is intent and action effected with it that matter.

    Then that is the crux, yes. As far as I’m concerned, someone should never be in the position of being considered a hero for maiming and/or killing someone in real life (in fantasy situations, like TV shows, movies, games, books, etc, etc, etc, yes, but in real life, no). There are potential circumstances where it might be the only thing they could do to protect themselves or someone else, and that would make maiming and/or killing someone understandable and even excusable, but doing so in even those circumstances would be under the heading of ‘least wrong’ rather than ‘right’.

    It’s a preference, not a rule. If i was in a fight, of course i’d prefer to have an excess of force. However, I don’t know what the day will bring when i step out of my house in the morning, and i never intend to get into a situation where i might need to draw my weapon. So, i compromise with my carry, a maxima of comfort, size, price, effectiveness, and other factors.

    So, basically, it makes you feel safer, so fuck everyone else.

    I gave my open-carry reasons above @43. I disagree that it doesn’t enhance my safety or that of others, but that’s a very difficult thing to quantify. I think it does have a dissuading effect (as any open carry weapon would, katana or firearm) against attack in more situations than it would make you an initial target. My answer to your hypothetical was as honest as i could be, thinking it through from my desk…if you have a question about a specific detail, feel free to ask about it.

    Sorry, but you appear to want it both ways, then – you want the visible presence of a weapon to have an implied threat of force so that it has a ‘dissuading effect’ on anyone that might cause you or others harm, and it therefore makes you and others around you safer, but, simultaneously, the presence of a weapon utterly fails to have any sort of implied threat of any kind, so I’m being silly for thinking there’s a risk that weapon might be used.

    The only way I can figure this is true without you simply being a liar is that you are so convinced that the implied threat of deadly weapons magically only work on those who want to do you harm that you simply discount people telling you straight that, from personal experience, they can say that this is not true, mainly because psychic powers are not an innate human ability, and that you are so mindlessly unconcerned by weapons that, if anyone did want to do you harm, all they would have to do is smile at you, so that they’re ‘not being aggressive’, until they got in a position where they could use their weapon on you before you had a chance to even so much as begin to reach for yours. In fact, if it was an unusual weapon, you would even help them out by coming up to them to start a conversation about it – which, of course, would include them pulling it out so you could see it properly.

  260. sabrekgb says

    As I said, previously, you don’t know wtf you’re talking about. You’re not the one who was faced by a person with a drawn gun. FWIW, moron, cops are NOT allowed to shoot people that they think are bad people, they have to follow the rules that you and your idiot gunzloonz palz don’t.

    So much wrong there…

    I read the articles on the situation, so i know that you were wrong about what you said happened, he didn’t jump out at them, they were following him.

    No, I was not faced with it, they were…and they knew they were going to be…they were following him knowing he’d already killed someone. “You weren’t there, you can’t judge.” is incorrect.

    I never said or implied that they should have just shot him out of hand before he threatened them directly. I said, they should have had their weapons at the low ready. They knew he was armed, had just killed someone, and were directly pursuing him. Approaching him with holstered weapons is silly. I don’t know if that is what happened or not, but you said above that they would have had to “draw, aim and fire” as some sort of mitigating factor for why they shouldn’t be blamed for shooting at 1 person and hitting 9 different people. I disagreed.

    As for them having to obey rules that other people who are not police don’t…i’d argue it’s much the other way around. Cops routinely kill innocent people and are not prosecuted for it, the rest of us don’t have that immunity and must be much more careful in application of deadly force.

    I don’t say that i am better trained as a blanket statement (though having shot with cops, i’m definitely better than some in that regard), but i do say that my skill levels in the relevant areas are “good enough” to carry. If i was completely incompetent, couldn’t hit the broad side of a barn, was ignorant of the laws in my area, or had piss-poor judgement in general, then i shouldn’t be carrying. That’s not the case, though. And, again, no i’m not posting identifying information on open web links for everyone to see just because you told me to. At least, not until i see you post your Social Security card first…then we can talk about it, lol.

  261. says

    You will agree that “slaves did not have gun rights” is not an acceptable argument for the conclusion “the second amendment does not guarantee an individual right to keep and bear arms” for the reasons quoted above.

    I never made such an argument about the Second Amendment, and neither did anyone else. DC merely mentioned that slaves were yet another group of people who weren’t allowed to be in any militia, thus further refuting your ridiculous claim that “The people are the militia.”

    And then you will apologize either for your dishonesty for the above post strongly implying such, or you will apologize for your posting above when you were not full possession of the facts…

    You’re demanding I apologize for YOUR misrepresentation of what SOMEONE ELSE said? Are you TRYING to be ridiculous? Besides, you’re the guy who said the right to own guns trumps the right of people to be protected from violence, so you don’t get to demand anything from anyone.

  262. sabrekgb says

    @275 zmidponk

    Then that is the crux, yes. … but doing so in even those circumstances would be under the heading of ‘least wrong’ rather than ‘right’.

    Ok, i can sort of understand that then. Not to say i agree, exactly, but there is nuance to be uncovered there. So, then, would you consider yourself a pacifist?

    So, basically, it makes you feel safer, so fuck everyone else.

    Kinda… I mean, i’m not apologetic about exercising my rights and i don’t think i should have to be. It makes everyone (religious) else less uncomfortable when people don’t make blasphemous art, but people shouldn’t curtail their first amendment rights because of that. People do get worked up over blasphemy, though. So, yeah, fuck ‘em *shrug*

    That said, as i mentioned above, i am not aggressive, don’t go out of my way to be a dick, and am a reasonably decent person all-around whilst exercising my right to have a deadly weapon secured to me in public. So, i’m not trying to say “Fuck all y’all!”, more: “Hey guys, sorry if you don’t like it, but i’m gonna go ahead and do this anyway.”

    you want the visible presence of a weapon to have an implied threat of force so that it has a ‘dissuading effect’ on anyone that might cause you or others harm

    Yes. An implied threat of retaliatory or preventative force to those who would do me harm and the capacity to effect such force. I wouldn’t phrase it that way, but that’s pretty much true.

    but, simultaneously, the presence of a weapon utterly fails to have any sort of implied threat of any kind, so I’m being silly for thinking there’s a risk that weapon might be used.

    There is no threat to those who do not intend harm. This is something we live under every day, the (mostly valid) assumption that someone is not going to randomly hurt you intentionally without you hurting them first. This is not always true (hence carrying the weapon), but if someone was to initiate violence upon you, they are now legally in the wrong.

    I assume everyone is going to obey these basic ethical and legal rules (and i argue that they mostly make the same assumptions throughout their days…except it breaks down for some people in this thread when guns are added to the mix, and it shouldn’t)…right up until they give evidence that they won’t.

    if anyone did want to do you harm, all they would have to do is smile at you, so that they’re ‘not being aggressive’,

    No, there’s more to it than that. Much more.

    you would even help them out by coming up to them to start a conversation about it – which, of course, would include them pulling it out so you could see it properly.

    No…why would them drawing it be entailed in that? No “of course” there. They should not be drawing their weapon without good cause, and if they did then that is a very loud red flag (either for hostile intent or bad judgement). If i want to see it, we can go elsewhere, and examine it under controlled conditions, but that’s tangenting off into irrelevance.

  263. EnlightenmentLiberal says

    @Raging Bee
    Ok. Good. We can make some progress.

    We need to take a step back from gun rights, and establish proper jurisprudence, before we can continue.

    I believe a good case can be made that allowing the FBI, or CIA, or whoever, to spy on all communication poses no immediate harm to individuals to society. It does not inconvenience them. Further, this global warrantless suspicionless spying would undoubtably lower crime of all kinds. It seems by your standard of “relevant facts on the ground” and “common-sense analysis of the consequence of laws”, it seems that the federal congress should be allowed to implement law and policy which would allow such spying by the CIA.

    Do you actually support this conclusion? Do you actually think it’s a good idea to have the CIA spy on everyone in order to prevent and catch mundane crime? I hope not.

    If no – if you do not think that policy is a good – then let’s talk about why. Let’s weigh the positives and negatives.

    With a proper implementation, individual people would hardly be inconvenienced at all. Look at history – we barely even knew it was going on for a decade! Further, concerns about private matters being made public and the embarrassment and damage caused by that is negligible. Again, look at recent history. We barely even knew the program existed. There is no compelling danger here about people in government using personal details for personal reasons. I see no negatives at all in fact.

    The positives would be to give the police the tools they need to stop crime. Imagine the amount of violent crime, rape, murder, etc., we could stop if we implemented this. Further, let’s put a camera on every corner exactly like Britain has done. Imagine what we could do! Public servants could analyze this information and prevent almost all crime altogether!

    Why don’t we do this!? It sounds like a great idea doesn’t it? What sane and honest and law-abiding person wouldn’t want the police to catch criminals? What such person wouldn’t want these policies in place to prevent crime?

    Ok, out of contrarian mode. We both know that the only plausible reason why the fourth amendment protections are a good idea is that we fear a police state. We fear government tyranny.

    It’s not that we just fear one or two guys in government – that could be stopped by proper government oversight and proper government laws which would be in place if we trusted a majority of our government. Instead, we find that it’s not just one or two guys that we fear. We find that it’s the entire government which we fear.

    Can you think of any other reason why we should allow violent crime to continue when we could so easily stop it by giving these kinds of powers to the CIA and NSA?

    The critical question – how is this any different if there was an amendment which guaranteed an individual right to own guns?

    My last question, if I could show the intent of federalists and anti-federalists alike was for individual gun rights, that the writers of the second amendment intended individual gun rights, that the notes we have during the ratification of the second amendment was for individual gun rights, – if I could show all of that, could you agree that proper jurisprudence would be to enforce individual gun rights today?

  264. says

    SabreKGB:

    Still waiting for it to dawn on you that they didn’t ask you to come to their store

    They opened for public business and didn’t say “no lawful gun carriers allowed”, that’s pretty much asking me to come to their store. At the least, it’s not asking me to not. It’s not an unreasonable philosophy to adopt: That which is not prohibited, is allowed.

    That’s some industrial-strength cherry-picking there, breaking off in the middle of a sentence. Which i have posted twice on this thread (hence the “still waiting” part) and both times it ends with “…and play hero”. They didn’t ask you to come to their store and play hero.

    I’m just curious: do you do that in verbal communication? Respond to the pedestrian part of a sentence while ignoring the important modifying clause? Wait, scratch that. I don’t care. You simulate reasonableness but you don’t know what it is.

  265. D. C. Sessions says

    Wilcox’ situation is a great example of why it is not a bad idea to be armed in public (or to have armed “good guys” sprinkled throughout a population).

    Since you haven’t addressed the N>1 issue, I’ll take this as your N=1 analysis of common carry of firearms: the outcome with Wilcox armed is preferred to the outcome with Wilcox not armed.

    Wilcox armed: two cops dead, two perps dead, Wilcox dead.
    Wilcox not armed: two cops dead, two perps dead, Wilcox probably alive.

    We obviously have different value systems regarding those two outcomes.

  266. says

    We need to take a step back from gun rights, and establish proper jurisprudence, before we can continue.

    Why? You tried to support the gun-nuts’ interpretation of the Constitution, and it got soundly refuted. There’s nothing further “we” need to do.

    Do you actually support this conclusion? Do you actually think it’s a good idea to have the CIA spy on everyone in order to prevent and catch mundane crime?

    No, because it’s not supported by any reasonable interpretation of the text of the Constitution (which you didn’t mention in your list of factors that I would allegedly use to support it). Also, those “relevant facts on the ground” that you cite don’t really support such a conclusion either. So what, exactly, leads you to insinuate that I would?

  267. says

    That’s some industrial-strength cherry-picking there, breaking off in the middle of a sentence.

    That’s similar to what the gun nuts do with their favorite sentence in the Constitution: ignore the first half (along with the rest of the document).

  268. says

    My last question, if I could show the intent of federalists and anti-federalists alike was for individual gun rights, that the writers of the second amendment intended individual gun rights, that the notes we have during the ratification of the second amendment was for individual gun rights, – if I could show all of that, could you agree that proper jurisprudence would be to enforce individual gun rights today?

    Not necessarily, because (among other things) your hypothetical STILL doesn’t mention the part of the Second Amendment itself that mentions something other than “gun rights.” Gosh, what did the first half of that sentence talk about again? Can you remember? I’m pretty sure it wasn’t gun rights…

  269. D. C. Sessions says

    Can you think of any other reason why we should allow violent crime to continue when we could so easily stop it by giving these kinds of powers to the CIA and NSA?

    The critical question – how is this any different if there was an amendment which guaranteed an individual right to own guns?

    You mean, besides the fact that an individual right to own and prance around with guns is not a plausible deterrent to a police state?

    I note, again, that it isn’t so much that the gundamentalists don’t have a strong position on risks and benefits of letting ten thousand lilies bloom, it’s that the topic gets completely ignored.

    As for the love of unrestricted gunslinging in Colonial times: which, of the original 13 States, forbade towns and cities (or counties, parishes, etc.) from restricting ownership and carrying of firearms? In contrast, how common were such limitations on wearing firearms in Colonial America?

    Yes, “States’ Rights.” However, if carrying guns around is so solidly based in their ideas of society, surely they would have implemented them where they had the ability.

  270. sabrekgb says

    @ 280 georgewiman

    “…and play hero”. They didn’t ask you to come to their store and play hero.

    I left it off because it wasn’t relevant, it was just some verbal flourishing you were using to denigrate the concept of armed self-defense.

    First off, no one is “playing hero”. If i intervene in a situation that warrants it, it is because of a choice i make given my values, and the details of the situation in question. To say it would be “playing hero” minimizes it, but i don’t even really care about that because my decision is not based on a desire to receive accolades for doing so…it’s based on what i think is the morally correct thing to do.

    Second, the same thing applies: if it is not prohibited, it is permitted.

    Third, if there is a situation where “playing hero” is appropriate, then i don’t give a damn about Target’s policies in that instant, because the situation is more important than that. Should i let someone die if i can help because corporate policy says: “No playing hero”? Of course, if they don’t want me there to begin with, it’s somewhat moot, since the sign keeps me out but doesn’t keep out the dude wanting to “play villain”.

    So, there’s not even a coherent meaning to what you’re saying when you add “playing hero”…what does it even mean? It’s pablum. I addressed the actual points you raised.

    And: Yes, when i am talking with someone in person and they toss in superfluous phrasing, i usually ignore it. Sometimes i call them on it, though. Like now.

  271. EnlightenmentLiberal says

    @Raging Bee
    Ok. We’re still getting somewhere. Let me add a plank to my question. If I can show:
    1- the intent of federalists and anti-federalists alike was for individual gun rights, and
    2- the writers of the second amendment intended individual gun rights, and
    3- the understood intent of the second amendment was individual gun rights when it was written and ratified, and
    4- the understood effect of the second amendment was individual gun rights when it was written and ratified, and
    5- the plain text meaning of the second amendment – in the perspective of a native English speaker from the time who is versed in English common law of the time – is to protect individual gun rights ,
    * then would you agree that proper jurisprudence would be to enforce individual gun rights today?

    Again, I want to ensure we’re participating in the same discussion rather than talking past each other. I want to know what it will take to convince you that you’re wrong, rather than talking about points you don’t care about.

    If you agree that you would change your mind if I showed those things, then which parts do you think are controversial or wrong?

    If you don’t agree yet, what other planks do I need to add?

  272. EnlightenmentLiberal says

    @D. C. Sessions

    You mean, besides the fact that an individual right to own and prance around with guns is not a plausible deterrent to a police state?

    Are you saying that the legislature and the courts can decide that certain rights – like the fourth – are no longer worth protecting, and are free to discard them without an amendment process? That seems to be what you are implying. I want you to outright state it, or back off that position.

  273. sabrekgb says

    @281 D.C. Sessions

    Cool story, Bro, but you know you’re misrepresenting my position. While it didn’t work out that well for Wilcox, it was also the result of his decision to try and help. I don’t believe in taking away decision-making from people in most cases if the victim of their decisions is himself. As a good quote probably goes: “Freedom is being able to go to hell in your own particular handbasket.”

    Firefighters die going into burning buildings sometimes. Firefighters know this, and do it anyway. Should we prevent firefighters from deciding to risk themselves trying to help others?

    We can analyze the Wilcox example for lessons learned, but i think the better one is not “Keep yourself unarmed in case armed men are near,” but, “Maintain good situational awareness and ensure you do not concentrate on a single threat to the exclusion of other possible threats.”

  274. says

    SabreKGB, it may look like serious heroism to you, but it looks like a fantasy trip to a helluva lot of other people. When you tell us how you’re made of hero-stuff, well…

    SabreKGB:

    Second, the same thing applies: if it is not prohibited, it is permitted.

    Really? That’s great! Just imagine the range of behaviors that you can go into a store and engage in, because they didn’t think to warn you not to do those things on their property. Almost limitless entertaining possibilities.

    I know a guy who thinks he has better theories than the respective writings of Einstein, Feynman, and Hawkins. Maybe, but probably not. On a delusion scale you think you would have done better than police officers with many years of experience. Maybe. But that’s not the way I’m betting.

  275. sabrekgb says

    @290 georgewiman

    Dude, i’m not made of hero stuff. There are heroes out there, for sure, but i’m not one of them. I’m just a guy who tries to do the right thing most of the time, no more, no less. Maybe…just maybe, the mental picture you have of people who carry guns (who aren’t police) running around thinking they’re superman and wanting to save the day, is not the case. At least, not for all of us…can you budge that much?

    Just imagine the range of behaviors that you can go into a store and engage in, because they didn’t think to warn you not to do those things on their property. Almost limitless entertaining possibilities.

    Have you ever been to Walmart…?

  276. EnlightenmentLiberal says

    On a delusion scale you think you would have done better than police officers with many years of experience.

    Why so much respect and awe of the police in this thread? They’re just human, and often corrupt jackasses. Why do you think that they’re any better trained than some guy who regularly attends a gun range? From my understanding of usual police standards, I’d expect several of my friends to handle themselves with a gun far better than your average police officer. For example, many police officers don’t pull their gun on a criminal for their entire career IIRC, and the range requirements are lax and often overlooked.

  277. throwaway, never proofreads, every post a gamble says

    I don’t believe in taking away decision-making from people in most cases if the victim of their decisions is himself.

    Why yes, of course, everyone has that choice. Only, some people don’t realize that they are making that choice when they enter a supermarket to buy some bananas and there’s a guy over there compensating with one of his own bananas.

  278. sabrekgb says

    @239 throwaway

    I think you think you’re twisting something around to make a point, but you did it very badly. I honestly can’t parse that to make sense.

    Also, i think we’re back on penises now, everybody.

  279. says

    EL @287, ALL FIVE of your assertions about the Founders’ intent completely ignore the first half of the Second Amendment, precedes the gun rights bit and clearly says that gun rights are subordinate to something else. This persistent willful blindness on your part renders your arguments invalid and false, not to mention blatantly dishonest.

    And even when you account for the WHOLE Second Amendment, you also have to account for the fact that it’s just one sentence in a much larger document. All in all, your constitutional interpretation is pure dishonest bullshit.

  280. sabrekgb says

    Holy shit, Raging Bee, what part of “If I can show” didn’t you get?

    You ever take a logic class…? It’s called establishing your premises. He knows you’re not in agreement with those things, but the question was if those could be show to you to be true, would you change your position? Or, stated elseways, what would have to be shown for you to accept that the second amendment does indeed mean an individual right to keep and bear arms?

    It’s a hypothetical that tries to get you to think about the basis of your belief. Knowing why you believe something is as important as the belief itself, and having an understanding of what would change your mind is the mark of someone open and self-aware. For someone who was accused me of being “religious” in my attitude towards guns, you should appreciate the benefit of knowing your foundations and being able to analyze them. Be less defensive and more introspective…you can still disagree while participating in the thought exercise.

    Shit, this is why logic and epistemology 101 need to be part of public school curriculum.

  281. zmidponk says

    sabrekgb #278:

    Ok, i can sort of understand that then. Not to say i agree, exactly, but there is nuance to be uncovered there. So, then, would you consider yourself a pacifist?

    No, I would consider myself someone who actually places value on human life, and not necessarily qualified to pass judgement on who lives and who dies.

    Kinda… I mean, i’m not apologetic about exercising my rights and i don’t think i should have to be. It makes everyone (religious) else less uncomfortable when people don’t make blasphemous art, but people shouldn’t curtail their first amendment rights because of that.

    But people do have their First Amendment rights curtailed because of possible or actual danger that may be caused by exercising them in particular ways and/or in particular places (the classic example of shouting ‘FIRE’ in a crowded theater springs to mind), or, to put it another way, some people’s rights are curtailed when they infringe on other people’s right to be or feel safe. However, you seem to think there should be virtually no restrictions whatsoever on you exercising Second Amendment right, even though, by their very nature, there is a far greater risk of danger, and even if you exercising those right infringe on other people’s right to feel or be safe.

    Yes. An implied threat of retaliatory or preventative force to those who would do me harm and the capacity to effect such force. I wouldn’t phrase it that way, but that’s pretty much true.

    And a random person seeing you on the street knows that your threat of force is only intended as retaliatory against people who mean harm or preventative of others causing harm…how, exactly? They don’t. They only know you have made the effort to arm yourself, and thus, there is a risk and/or an implied threat you will use those arms. So the only way you can have the implied threat of force to have the ‘dissuading effect’ against those who would do you harm without also giving an implied threat of force to those who don’t is if psychic powers are nothing particularly unusual in human beings.

    There is no threat to those who do not intend harm. This is something we live under every day, the (mostly valid) assumption that someone is not going to randomly hurt you intentionally without you hurting them first. This is not always true (hence carrying the weapon), but if someone was to initiate violence upon you, they are now legally in the wrong.

    And, again, I will point out that, if it is justified in you arming yourself against the risk of a random stranger causing you or others harm, it is justified in others regarding you, specifically, as a greater risk because, to them, you are not just a random stranger, but a random stranger with a deadly weapon.

    I assume everyone is going to obey these basic ethical and legal rules (and i argue that they mostly make the same assumptions throughout their days…except it breaks down for some people in this thread when guns are added to the mix, and it shouldn’t)…right up until they give evidence that they won’t.

    One bit of evidence possibly being that one particular person has, for reasons unknown, made sure they have a device specifically designed to maim and/or kill.

    No, there’s more to it than that. Much more.

    Let’s suppose for a moment you think you are as good as you seem to think you are at reading body language, to the degree that you wouldn’t be fooled by someone pretending to be a fellow white-hat cowboy, instead of someone who wants to kill you. Do you think everyone else is? I certainly don’t. Therefore, it’s perfectly reasonable for someone to view anyone armed as a potential threat.

    No…why would them drawing it be entailed in that? No “of course” there. They should not be drawing their weapon without good cause, and if they did then that is a very loud red flag (either for hostile intent or bad judgement). If i want to see it, we can go elsewhere, and examine it under controlled conditions, but that’s tangenting off into irrelevance.

    Yeah, because people who are interested in weapons never show them to each other. In case it’s not ridiculously obvious, that’s sarcasm.

  282. EnlightenmentLiberal says

    @Raging Bee
    Wow. I have nothing more to add on top of sabrekgb. He said it better than I could myself. I just wish it didn’t take so long to establish that you are close-minded, dogmatic, and unwilling to take part in an honest conversation.

  283. EnlightenmentLiberal says

    @Raging Bee
    I don’t think that’s quite right. Consider what you said here:

    And even when you account for the WHOLE Second Amendment, you also have to account for the fact that it’s just one sentence in a much larger document. All in all, your constitutional interpretation is pure dishonest bullshit.

    I understand your position to be something like: “You’re wrong. That’s not what the document says. But even if it was, I would ignore the law in this case because I know better. Worse, I would advocate for others to deny what the law clearly says.” That last part is the especially troubling part.

    This reminds me of an important moral lesson you should take to heart:
    http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0060665/quotes

    William Roper: So, now you give the Devil the benefit of law!

    Sir Thomas More: Yes! What would you do? Cut a great road through the law to get after the Devil?

    William Roper: Yes, I’d cut down every law in England to do that!

    Sir Thomas More: Oh? And when the last law was down, and the Devil turned ’round on you, where would you hide, Roper, the laws all being flat? This country is planted thick with laws, from coast to coast, Man’s laws, not God’s! And if you cut them down, and you’re just the man to do it, do you really think you could stand upright in the winds that would blow then? Yes, I’d give the Devil benefit of law, for my own safety’s sake!

    I would give gun rights the benefit of the law, for the sake of the rest of my rights. That’s what rule of law gives you. It’s not worth throwing out the rule of law just because of current gun violence. It’s just not.

    If you want to practice civil disobedience, go for it. If you want to campaign for an amendment, be my guest. Civil disobedience recognizes the rule of law, and admits that their actions are contrary to it. They are not actively trying to subvert the whole enterprise.

    However, what you are doing isn’t just protest, civil disobedience, or a movement for an amendment. You are openly advocating for the destruction of the rule of law itself. You can take your desire subvert the whole of the rule of law, and shove it up your ass.

    The rule of law is the only thing separating our country from hellholes like Syria, where they torture you or rape you in prison. It’s the only thing separating our country from hellholes like Somalia, where bandits and gunmen are everywhere. The rule of law is a cultural phenomenon which we have in the U.S., and it takes forever to build that up from scratch. It’s a fragile thing, easily lost, and hard to regain. You want to destroy that? You can take your concerns, and shot it right up your arse.

  284. says

    Holy shit, Raging Bee, what part of “If I can show” didn’t you get?

    The part where it’s relevant, since a) you haven’t actually shown any of it, and b) even if you did, that would not override any of what already HAS been shown.

    I just wish it didn’t take so long to establish that you are close-minded, dogmatic, and unwilling to take part in an honest conversation.

    …says the guy who keeps on ignoring the first half of a Constitutional amendment. (And by the way, the NRA does the same thing, starting in the lobby of their headquarters, where only the second half of that sentence appears on the wall.)

    I understand your position to be something like: “You’re wrong. That’s not what the document says. But even if it was, I would ignore the law in this case because I know better. Worse, I would advocate for others to deny what the law clearly says.”

    No, that is not my position. Your “understanding” is nothing but deliberate misrepresentation. The only people ignoring any part of the law are you and your fellow lying gun-nuts.

    This reminds me of an important moral lesson you should take to heart…

    So the fact that I disagree with your totally bankrupt opinion means I want to eliminate all constraints of law? Fuck you, EL, you’re just another libertarian bigot trying to pretend everyone who disagrees with him is Hitler.

  285. says

    Why so much respect and awe of the police in this thread?

    Because they DESERVE more respect than self-important buffoons like sabrekgb and lying lawyer-wannabees like EL (which, admittedly, isn’t saying much). And yes, cops can be corrupt; but so can armed civilians and libertarian sophists who call themselves “law-abiding citizens” while lying about the law.

    And no, there’s no “awe” here. That’s just another lie you trot out because you can’t handle the truth.

  286. says

    “I read the articles on the situation, so i know that you were wrong about what you said happened, he didn’t jump out at them, they were following him.”

    Watch this, shithead:

    http://www.bing.com/videos/search?q=video+of+empire+state+building+shooting&FORM=VIRE1#view=detail&mid=22B24EE3F8579060B3BA22B24EE3F8579060B3BA

    He was walking away, briskly, the cops following him. At about :24 seconds into the video, he pulls his gun, the two cops turn away and in the next four to five seconds pull their own weapons and fire several rounds at the man. The whole incident from the time he pulled his gun to the time that he fell to the sidewalk was between four and five seconds duration. You’re better than that? in your fucking dreams, pal.

    “No, I was not faced with it, they were…and they knew they were going to be…they were following him knowing he’d already killed someone.”

    Uh, WRONG.They had been TOLD that he had killed someone. He was not displaying a weapon, the police did not have anything beyond an eyewitness report from a construction worker who was at the scene. I know that you, with your amazing discernment, would immediately verify that the guy who was screaming that the man in the business suit, carrying a briefcase was a killer and then just bag that suit-o-perp with a double or triple tap, center mass and then clear your weapon, lay it on the ground and raise your hands over your head so that the cops wouldn’t shoot you (although some vigilante who saw you shoot the guy might decide to put a notch on HIS gunbelt). Accusation is not confirmation.

    @270:

    “@sabrekgb About democommie. Let me give a brief introduction.”

    This from a lying fuckbag who has the absurd notion that keyboard bloviating is the same thing as making his case.

    You’re a fucking moron, sunnyJim, and that’s pretty much all there is to it.

    You like to talk a lot of shit but when it comes down to specifics you, like Sabretoothlesskgb are not interested in backing up your baffling bullshit* with anything like fact.

    It’s possible that you have finally found someone with whom you can make common cause so that the next time you open that massively indignorant piehole of yours about the safety of N-Q-Lar power v the safety of wind, solar, geothermal, tidal or any other form of ALTERNATIVE electrical power generation currently in use.

    So, go for it, asswipe.

    I honestly didn’t think that this thread could go to 200 comments, never mind 302. However, it could go over 400 if you don’t get your keyboardverborreah under control (like that’s gonna fuckin’ happen).

    * You and he, btw, are the only “baffled” parties on the threads where you comment.

  287. says

    My math skilz aren’t great but if my count is correct the co-bloviating team of Sabrekgb and Endarkled Nitwit has left 84 comments here (through @302). By count they represent about 28% of the thread’s comments. By volume, a much trickier measure, I’m gonna do a SWAG and say about 40-45% of the thread is their spew. In terms of rational, intelligent discourse (not the attempt to sound intelligent but actually BE intelligent) they hover somewhere around 2%*.

    * Yes, I’m being generous but one should not be too hard on the delusional trolls. Nah, fuck that, they’re both shitheadz with bizarre agendas.

  288. EnlightenmentLiberal says

    @Raging Bee
    I can be convinced that I’m wrong. I’ll have the conversation about the meaning of “a well regulated militia, being necessary to the security of a free state, …”. I believe that you are wrong on your understanding of that phrase.

    You said: (emphasis added)

    The part where it’s relevant, since a) you haven’t actually shown any of it, and b) even if you did, that would not override any of what already HAS been shown.

    That quote is saying that you cannot be convinced that you are wrong, that you have made up your mind, and that no amount of new evidence and argument could possibly convince you to the contrary. That is the definition of dogmatic and close-minded.

    You also said: Emphasis added:

    The part where it’s relevant, since a) you haven’t actually shown any of it,

    You are now being intellectually dishonest, and strawmanning. Of course I agree I haven’t shown some of these points yet to your satisfaction. I was exceedingly clear on that point. I was exceedingly clear in that I wanted to know where we disagree in order to make additional arguments on those points.

    Then, you did openly say “fuck the rule of law” here:

    And even when you account for the WHOLE Second Amendment, you also have to account for the fact that it’s just one sentence in a much larger document. All in all, your constitutional interpretation is pure dishonest bullshit.

    Again, this is you saying that even if you could be shown to be wrong, you will advocate to ignore the amendment and pretend it is not there. That is saying “fuck you” to the rule of law. Which makes you a bald-faced liar when you said:

    [EL:] I understand your position to be something like: “You’re wrong. That’s not what the document says. But even if it was, I would ignore the law in this case because I know better. Worse, I would advocate for others to deny what the law clearly says.”

    No, that is not my position. Your “understanding” is nothing but deliberate misrepresentation. The only people ignoring any part of the law are you and your fellow lying gun-nuts.

    Finally, I notice that you have to lump me in with “the other” in order to make your point. A post ad hoc rationalization. You have to pretend the world is something else because you cannot handle the truth that a liberal feminist socialist telling you that you are wrong.

    Read what I’ve said else-thread. I am no gun nut. I do not own a gun. I’ve never fired a gun. I have no plans to buy a gun ever. At a minimum, guns should be much more tightly controlled, and I’ve laid out uncontroversial and constitutional ways to do so up-thread.

    I just want to preserve the rule of law and our western form of government.

  289. EnlightenmentLiberal says

    To continue, I think that is really telling. You really don’t understand rule of law do you Raging Bee? You really cannot understand how I both think that giving any jackass a gun is a bad idea, but I’m also supportive of jurisprudence which currently renders individual gun rights. You cannot understand how I am both against the current law (with current regulations) but also for its defense until its changed or repealed. You think I’m a gun nut for defending it, because you cannot see the third possibility. It’s really quite sad.

    I strongly suggest that you reread the quote from “A Man For All Seasons” above.

  290. sabrekgb says

    @democommie 303/306

    Cool story, Bro.

    @ 302 democommie

    Yeah, i watched it. Yeah, i can do better. So can everyone at work. So can my little brother, probably. That’s all secondary, though, because we don’t expect the police to be as good as we are at stuff like that, we expect better, don’t we?

    Like i said, it’s pretty hard to do worse than shoot at 1 person (close range!) and hit 9 others. With all this police training, you’d think they could do better, no? When i asked you before why only police should be allowed to carry weapons in public and you yelled “Training!”…was this what you meant? Because i’m pretty sure i can get “Training!” from Joe-Bob’s gun school and bait shop that will raise me to the level of shooting at one person, from 15 ft away, and hitting 9 others, pretty quick.

    If those are the minimums…then it ain’t hard to get to the minimums.

    Also, i knew it was a fluke that one post you had where you engaged in honest argument without being all unhinged…but i still give you props for it. I will treasure it, like a rare gem, or a 4-leaf clover, or a piece of dog poop that amazingly didn’t stink.

  291. zmidponk says

    sabrekgb #307:

    Yeah, i watched it. Yeah, i can do better. So can everyone at work. So can my little brother, probably. That’s all secondary, though, because we don’t expect the police to be as good as we are at stuff like that, we expect better, don’t we?

    Well, if you’re such an amazing crack shot who would never, ever, ever, ever, ever do something as bad as that, and, as you seem to make out, have such amazing situational awareness that you can instantly tell when someone’s an actual threat in all situations, bar none, without resorting to such silly ideas that, if someone’s got a weapon, they might just use it, I’m sure the police will be glad to give you a job so that you can show them how it’s done. Just think – that way, you can go around making everyone safe by displaying your weapon all over the place and ACTUALLY GET PAID FOR IT.

  292. sabrekgb says

    @297 zmidponk

    No, I would consider myself someone who actually places value on human life, and not necessarily qualified to pass judgement on who lives and who dies.

    I place value on life too, though i admit to being biased towards my own. I think the judgement required on deciding versus yourself (or a loved one) and an unlawful attacker is a pretty easy call, i’m surprised you disagree.

    If you are not a pacifist, and you have said above that sometimes violence is the “less wrong” choice in a situation, then how can you not see that having the means to effective self defense can be a good thing?

    But people do have their First Amendment rights curtailed because of possible or actual danger that may be caused

    Not eliminated, though. “Because other people aren’t comfortable with it.” is also not a valid reason. When restricting rights, it is best to craft the restriction as narrowly as will accomplish the necessary goal (and, assuming the goal is of sufficient importance to warrant said restriction and does not eliminate the right entirely), and to lean in the direction of less restriction vice more.

    some people’s rights are curtailed when they infringe on other people’s right to be or feel safe

    Be, sometimes. Feel, no.

    And a random person seeing you on the street knows that your threat of force is only intended as retaliatory against people who mean harm or preventative of others causing harm…how, exactly?

    The same way he knows that a 6’4″, bulked-out dude’s threat of force (by being stronger) is only intended as retaliatory…that is to say, it’s an assumption we make by virtue of being in our civilization. No one has the legal right to come assault you if you didn’t do something first, the assumption is that laws will be obeyed, ergo you assume he will not hurt you absent evidence contrary…no psychic powers needed.

    Let’s take guns out of this and see how it works in another area : traffic (yes, i know gun != car…it’s an analogy…).

    You drive.
    Other people you don’t know drive.
    Cars are dangerous and can kill you in an instant if they are used wrong. (as evidence, i offer the number of annual traffic fatalities in the U.S.)
    You come upon a light at a blind corner and trust that others who you know nothing about will respect the rule of the light. When it is green, you go and when it is red, you stop. If someone else went when it was green for you, you could be killed…but you trust that they will not.

    This is all i have been trying to say. No psychic powers required. Just adhering to the rules we already have laid out and adhere to.

    if it is justified in you arming yourself against the risk of a random stranger causing you or others harm, it is justified in others regarding you, specifically, as a greater risk

    A greater risk to attack, sure…i’m cool with that. I don’t want to be attacked anyway.

    One bit of evidence possibly being that one particular person has, for reasons unknown, made sure they have a device specifically designed to maim and/or kill.

    I think the reasons are pretty known, especially when carried openly, properly secured, whilst going about normal activities in an unaggressive manner. Even if not: That is legal. Assaulting someone unprovoked is not legal. Obeying the law is not evidence for not obeying the law.

    @310

    Well, if you’re such an amazing crack shot who would never, ever, ever, ever, ever do something as bad as that, and, as you seem to make out, have such amazing situational awareness that you can instantly tell when someone’s an actual threat in all situations, bar none, without resorting to such silly ideas that, if someone’s got a weapon, they might just use it, I’m sure the police will be glad to give you a job so that you can show them how it’s done. Just think – that way, you can go around making everyone safe by displaying your weapon all over the place and ACTUALLY GET PAID FOR IT.

    Careful there, your use of absolutes when responding to someone talking about specifics is approaching democommie level in this comment.

    Is it really too much for you guys to expect the police to not shoot 9 bystanders? One does not need to be a “crack shot” in order to shoot someone 15 feet away and miss 9 other people. Is it really such utter hubris that i am confident that i can do better than that? I mean, i suppose i shouldn’t put myself up there with the higher, armed caste…but it seems like not shooting 9 people would be attainable.

    Think about this: if this had happened elsewhere and a person who wasn’t police had followed and shot the killer, and then 6 other people too…you would be shouting at how this proves regular people can’t be trusted with weapons in public. But when police do it, and shoot even more people than that, you’re defending them.

    Really…?

    Tell me you see what’s wrong with that, please.

  293. sabrekgb says

    @309 democommie

    88 comments and it’s all just noise.

    Come on, democommie…you’ve made more comments than that.

  294. says

    90 and counting.

    ” Because i’m pretty sure i can get “Training!” from Joe-Bob’s gun school and bait shop that will raise me to the level of shooting at one person, from 15 ft away, and hitting 9 others, pretty quick.”

    Because you’re pretty sure? You’re not, “You can take that the bank, Senator, to the BLOOD BANK”, littleStevieSeagal positively sure?

    I know some guys that think that they could go one-on-one with Mike Tyson or LeBron James or hit the 30 yo Mario Rivera’s “heater”. They all lack only one piece of the puzzle–actually ever trying it. You’re a blowhard and a fraud. Go tell your mom that you need some money for Cheetos and Dew and fuck off.

  295. sabrekgb says

    @313 democommie

    The big difference, of course, is that shooting at one person, 15 feet away, and hitting 9 others is almost-comedic level incompetence.

    Did LeBron shoot a 3 pointer and end up scoring 36 points for the other team?

    Did Mike Tyson fight Evander Holyfield and end up biting off 9 spectator ears?

    Did Mario Rivera ever get his team 9 outs in a single inning while he was pitching?

    Dude…do you even hear yourself talk? I mean, you know that words have meaning, right? They’re not just pretty baubles you can string together and call the product a point. I mean, unless you’re making a haiku:

    democommie when
    Asked why: eyes White, mouth foaming,
    He shouts out, “Training!”

  296. says

    That quote is saying that you cannot be convinced that you are wrong, that you have made up your mind, and that no amount of new evidence and argument could possibly convince you to the contrary.

    No, it merely says that I’m already aware of lots of other facts, reasoning and history that is not overridden by what the Federalist Papers said, wise and useful though it may be. Once again, you deliberately lied about what I said.

    Again, this is you saying that even if you could be shown to be wrong, you will advocate to ignore the amendment and pretend it is not there.

    And yet again, you lie about what I said. I said that the Second Amendment was not the whole of the Constitution, and cannot be interpreted in a vacuum. Only by pure malicious dishonesty can you interpret that statement of obvious fact as “pretend it is not there.”

    Finally, I notice that you have to lump me in with “the other” in order to make your point.

    I do so because, as I’ve already explicitly pointed out, you BEHAVE like “the other.”

    I just want to preserve the rule of law and our western form of government.

    No, you don’t, any more than Michele Bachmann or Ron Paul.

  297. sabrekgb says

    Raging Bee, you’ve clearly formed an opinion. No one disputes that. You have a position, great.

    Is there, however, any piece of evidence which, in theory, could change your mind?

    If, without admitting you’re incorrect on anything right now, it could be shown that something you think is true is actually false, would you be open to changing any of your beliefs that are based either solely or in part on that piece of evidence.

    Doesn’t even have to be on guns.

    History, for example. If it could be shown that some event we think happened was actually a mis-interpretation of evidence…would you then update your mental model of history?

    This is the basic and foundational question of open inquiry and intellectual honesty. “Would you change your mind if given sufficient evidence?”

    Just that question, only that question…can you answer that? Doesn’t matter what the evidence is right now or what your position is or anything. Just in principle…

  298. says

    Is there, however, any piece of evidence which, in theory, could change your mind?

    Gee, I dunno, why don’t you find someone who can engage with my positions without LYING ABOUT WHAT I SAY, and let’s see where it goes?

    If, without admitting you’re incorrect on anything right now, it could be shown that something you think is true is actually false, would you be open to changing any of your beliefs that are based either solely or in part on that piece of evidence.

    Sure — I used to be a Roman Catholic, then a Communist, then a sort of half-in-half-out born-again Christian, then a Reagan Democrat; and now I’m what you might call a Social-Democrat. So yeah, those who know me, at least, know I have a track record of admitting I was wrong where appropriate, and changing my opinions accordingly. Of course, all of those changes were prompted by the unending accumulation of education, news-reading, and experience, which seems to be something you gun-rights nutjobs are kinda weak on.

  299. sabrekgb says

    @317 Raging Bee

    I’ll leave the continuing legal discussion for Elightenment Liberal, but this jumped out at me:

    I used to be a Roman Catholic, then a Communist, then a sort of half-in-half-out born-again Christian, then a Reagan Democrat; and now I’m what you might call a Social-Democrat.

    That’s confusing to me. Some of those things are religions, and some are political philosophies…why are they all listed together? That seems to have the odd implication that politics and religion are somewhat synonymous. Do you believe this to be the case?

  300. Al Dente says

    I’ve noticed that sabrekgb is given to asking odd questions. In this particular case, Raging Bee is explaining how opinions can be changed when new evidence is received and processed. sabrekgb might consider using the same process, since thinking doesn’t appear to be hir first language.

  301. sabrekgb says

    @320 Al Dente

    Cool story, Bro…very value-added. Did you even read the thread?

  302. zmidponk says

    sabrekgb #311:

    I place value on life too, though i admit to being biased towards my own. I think the judgement required on deciding versus yourself (or a loved one) and an unlawful attacker is a pretty easy call, i’m surprised you disagree.

    I don’t disagree. You must be REALLY bad at reading comprehension if you think I did.

    If you are not a pacifist, and you have said above that sometimes violence is the “less wrong” choice in a situation, then how can you not see that having the means to effective self defense can be a good thing?

    Because I’m not focused entirely on myself, or think I’m someone particularly special. Instead, I consider myself a typical member of my society, so any right granted to me is also therefore granted to everyone else – even people who might not be as careful or responsible on how, where and when they utilise that right, or even wilfully abuse it.

    Not eliminated, though.

    From what you’ve said so far, you seem to want to be able to carry a gun anywhere you want, in any way you want, with the only restrictions placed on that being ones you place on yourself. You now appear to be suggesting that not letting you do that is eliminating your Second Amendment rights entirely.

    “Because other people aren’t comfortable with it.” is also not a valid reason.

    How about ‘because it puts me in fear of my safety?’ You say you wear a gun because it makes you feel safe. The connection between wearing a gun and being safer is debatable at best. The connection between people having guns and people being shot, through deliberate act or accident, is a bit more clear-cut.

    When restricting rights, it is best to craft the restriction as narrowly as will accomplish the necessary goal (and, assuming the goal is of sufficient importance to warrant said restriction and does not eliminate the right entirely), and to lean in the direction of less restriction vice more.

    So you think that someone being concerned about catching a bullet on the street is such a silly concern that it’s not worth restricting gun rights to do anything about that. All I can say is tell that to the 9 bystanders that got shot by the police in that shoot-out you keep referring to.

    Be, sometimes. Feel, no.

    Oh, really? Ever heard of ‘criminal harrassment’? That could be actual assault or physical intimidation, but could simply be a person communicating with someone else in some way which makes them feel unsafe – which, if it weren’t for laws that criminalise it, would simply be the harrasser exercising their First Amendment rights. That’s one example that immediately sprung to mind. I’m sure, with a bit of thought, I could give you more.

    The same way he knows that a 6’4″, bulked-out dude’s threat of force (by being stronger) is only intended as retaliatory…that is to say, it’s an assumption we make by virtue of being in our civilization. No one has the legal right to come assault you if you didn’t do something first, the assumption is that laws will be obeyed, ergo you assume he will not hurt you absent evidence contrary…no psychic powers needed.

    Well, somebody doesn’t know your 6’4″ dude’s strength is intended as retaliatory. On the other hand, there’s plenty of reasons someone could be 6’4″ and bulked out that aren’t ‘so I can kick the shit out of someone’ – being born with genes that make that pretty much inevitable, working in a job that has a lot of heavy lifting, being addicted to steroids, etc, etc, etc. Having a weapon has only one reason – so you can kill and/or maim someone.

    Let’s take guns out of this and see how it works in another area : traffic (yes, i know gun != car…it’s an analogy…).

    You drive.
    Other people you don’t know drive.
    Cars are dangerous and can kill you in an instant if they are used wrong. (as evidence, i offer the number of annual traffic fatalities in the U.S.)
    You come upon a light at a blind corner and trust that others who you know nothing about will respect the rule of the light. When it is green, you go and when it is red, you stop. If someone else went when it was green for you, you could be killed…but you trust that they will not.

    This is all i have been trying to say. No psychic powers required. Just adhering to the rules we already have laid out and adhere to.

    Except, in your analogy, no-one has made any special effort to equip themselves with something that specifically has the function of running red lights. So it doesn’t really stand up.

    A greater risk to attack, sure…i’m cool with that. I don’t want to be attacked anyway.

    As I cannot comprehend someone being stupid enough to not get the point I was making there, I will assume you were trying to make a joke, and failed.

    I think the reasons are pretty known, especially when carried openly, properly secured, whilst going about normal activities in an unaggressive manner. Even if not: That is legal. Assaulting someone unprovoked is not legal. Obeying the law is not evidence for not obeying the law.

    How do you know someone is going to break the law before they do? How do you know someone is going to be aggressive before they are? In a lot of cases, the answer to both questions are the same – you don’t. It isn’t about laws, it’s about risk assessment. If you say that there is a risk a random stranger will harm you (as you have said is one of the reasons you arm yourself), then saying a random stranger with a weapon is not a greater risk basically denies that weapons are weapons.

    Careful there, your use of absolutes when responding to someone talking about specifics is approaching democommie level in this comment.

    Is it really too much for you guys to expect the police to not shoot 9 bystanders? One does not need to be a “crack shot” in order to shoot someone 15 feet away and miss 9 other people. Is it really such utter hubris that i am confident that i can do better than that? I mean, i suppose i shouldn’t put myself up there with the higher, armed caste…but it seems like not shooting 9 people would be attainable.

    Think about this: if this had happened elsewhere and a person who wasn’t police had followed and shot the killer, and then 6 other people too…you would be shouting at how this proves regular people can’t be trusted with weapons in public. But when police do it, and shoot even more people than that, you’re defending them.

    Really…?

    Tell me you see what’s wrong with that, please.

    It’s more about the fact that you’re so arrogant that you think it’s utterly impossible that you would ever actually make a misjudgement, even in a situation where a guy suddenly turns around on you with a gun in his hand. If it weren’t for the fact it would put other people at risk, I’d hope you were actually put in that situation, just to see if you would do as well as you obviously think you would. It would surprise me if you came anything even remotely close to it.

    Oh, and, as for your comment about ‘evidence that regular people can’t be trusted with guns’, are you forgetting that the killer is such a ‘regular guy’? Should he have been trusted with a gun?

  303. says

    “Think about this: if this had happened elsewhere and a person who wasn’t police had followed and shot the killer, and then 6 other people too…you would be shouting at how this proves regular people can’t be trusted with weapons in public. But when police do it, and shoot even more people than that, you’re defending them.”

    Well, gosh, how shall I put this. Oh, yeah, that statement is a fucking lie, a lie told by a fucking liar.

    I don’t recall “defending the cops”, in any way shape or form. I do recall saying that you’re in no way capable of doing the job BETTER than they did. You keep bragging about your gunzskilz, powers of discernment, lightning reflexes and magical ability to guarantee that if you had been in that situation nobody except the killer would have been shot. You’re a poseur and you’re full of shit. Fuck off.

  304. says

    Do you think that this:

    “The big difference, of course, is that shooting at one person, 15 feet away, and hitting 9 others is almost-comedic level incompetence.

    Did LeBron shoot a 3 pointer and end up scoring 36 points for the other team?

    Did Mike Tyson fight Evander Holyfield and end up biting off 9 spectator ears?

    Did Mario Rivera ever get his team 9 outs in a single inning while he was pitching?”

    is some sort of cogent argument, you fucking moron?

    It’s pretty obvious that you have no fucking idea how stupid you look making “arguments” like that. If you weren’t armed I’d just laugh at you. As it is, when you decide to go all vigilante I hope I’m out of range.

  305. EnlightenmentLiberal says

    @Raging Bee
    I ask again, will you entertain the possibility that I could show enough historical evidence and documents to convince you that you are mistaken about your position? Or are you close-minded and dogmatic? Then, could you please explain your position in detail and where we disagree so that I can try to make progress, either in showing how I am wrong or how you are wrong.

    Again, my position in short:

    The militia is identical to the people. This is made clear in the militia act of 1792 which requires all able bodied men between 18 and 45 to buy a firearm and ammo. This is made clear in the Federalist papers (29 or 46 – see above). This is made clear in ratification debate notes, such where some argue that the constitution guarantees a “genuine militia” and not a “select militia”. The historical material on this point is endless.

    “Well regulated” at the time and in context simply meant “in proper operating order”. It’s regulated in the sense of operation. “Well regulated” in the sense of “operating well”.
    http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/regulate
    > regulated
    > 2 : to bring order, method, or uniformity to
    > Examples: [...] The dam regulates the flow of water into the river.

    The only sensible way to read the second amendment is as two statements of fact and one statement of policy. The amendment reads: “A well trained militia is required to maintain a free country and free republican form of government. The right of the people to keep and bear arms is required for a well trained militia. The right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed.”

    It does not matter if the two statements of fact are wrong/ It does not matter if you could conclusively shown either statement of fact to be wrong. It still guarantees the right to the people. It is not the place of the courts to overrule questions of fact. That is the job of the legislature. And the legislature cannot overrule the constitution short of an amendment.

    Other not-enumerated do not completely overrule enumerated rights. The not-enumerated general right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness does not overrule someone else’s right to make you miserable through free speech which you find offensive. It does not overrule someone else’s right to be safe against search and seizures even though we could stop so much more crime with unlimited search and seizures.

    Of course, gun rights can be restricted to be less than literally every person, just like the right to drive a car can be restricted to be less than literally every person. Similarly, we can require a license for gun rights just like we can require a license for driving rights.

    The only other argument you seem to have is that you do not like it, and it is a bad idea. Those are not legitimate arguments in matters of law.

    I ask again – are you close-minded and dogmatic? Are you going to be a slave to your current opinion? Or are you going to be straightforward and tell me exactly where you disagree, and why, and preferably citing any sources you have to back up those positions, and then be open to discussion and argument which can show you wrong on each and every point.

  306. EnlightenmentLiberal says

    In this particular case, Raging Bee is explaining how opinions can be changed when new evidence is received and processed.

    What the hell are you talking about? Raging Bee has said many times that he is unwilling to change his mind, and more than willing to ignore the rule of law because reasons. Not once has he actually said that he is open to changing his mind on this matter. I have. Who has been citing historical documents, evidence, and reason? And who has not?

  307. EnlightenmentLiberal says

    but could simply be a person communicating with someone else in some way which makes them feel unsafe – which, if it weren’t for laws that criminalise it, would simply be the harrasser exercising their First Amendment rights.

    Citations please.

    I agree that communicating actual threats is illegal. What you said is way above and beyond that standard, and I doubt that standard exists, or at least I hope it does not. Hell, by that standard, you could argue that what I’m doing in this thread makes some people “feel unsafe”. Your standard is bullshit.

    IIRC, harassment is not a one-off. You have to be doing targeted communication against a particular individual. The individual must have requested that you break off communication targeted at them. Then you do it again. Only then does it become harassment. Note the specific wording I used. If you’re in the public space, and the speech is directed at the public in general and it is not aimed at you (such as by following you), then it can never be harassment.

  308. EnlightenmentLiberal says

    @zmidponk
    It’s a veritable cornicopia of bullshit!

    From what you’ve said so far, you seem to want to be able to carry a gun anywhere you want, in any way you want, with the only restrictions placed on that being ones you place on yourself. You now appear to be suggesting that not letting you do that is eliminating your Second Amendment rights entirely.

    Read the thread. He said he would not be against a licensing scheme to own a gun at least as hard as driver’s ed.

    Because I’m not focused entirely on myself, or think I’m someone particularly special. Instead, I consider myself a typical member of my society, so any right granted to me is also therefore granted to everyone else – even people who might not be as careful or responsible on how, where and when they utilise that right, or even wilfully abuse it.

    How about ‘because it puts me in fear of my safety?’ You say you wear a gun because it makes you feel safe. The connection between wearing a gun and being safer is debatable at best. The connection between people having guns and people being shot, through deliberate act or accident, is a bit more clear-cut.

    So you think that someone being concerned about catching a bullet on the street is such a silly concern that it’s not worth restricting gun rights to do anything about that. All I can say is tell that to the 9 bystanders that got shot by the police in that shoot-out you keep referring to.

    Explain to me how this reasoning does not also applies to the fourth amendment, and criminals using the fourth amendment to do crime and get away with it. I’m waiting.

    Let me take all of your arguments, and turn them thus: “I trust the police. I’m a good guy. Why should I object to the police being able to search my email, listen in on my phone calls, etc.? If I restrict the police from doing that, I’m harming my own safety. If you disagree with me, all I can say is tell that to poor parents who lost their children to violence, and the criminals got off because the police didn’t have probable cause to do a search to get the evidence to convict the people responsible.”

    Thus: Your arguments as legal arguments are bullshit. As moral arguments – arguments whether we should have such laws – they’re also largely bullshit. You might be able to make some progress by doing a sober analysis of the harm and good, but that sober analysis of the fourth amendment must include fears of government tyranny, or you will come to the conclusion that the fourth amendment is also a bad idea. And once you admit that, arguing for gun rights becomes a whole lot easier.

  309. says

    Raging Bee has said many times that he is unwilling to change his mind, and more than willing to ignore the rule of law because reasons.

    I never said anything close to that, and you know it, you lying sack of shit. Just because nothing YOU say changes my mind, does not mean I’m unwilling to change my mind.

  310. says

    I ask again, will you entertain the possibility that I could show enough historical evidence and documents to convince you that you are mistaken about your position? Or are you close-minded and dogmatic?

    This is the same sort of bullshit I hear from creationists, flat-earthers, and other denialists: “Are you willing to admit that my ignorant, dishonest, and/or manipulative talking-points may be right after all, or are you closed-minded and dogmatic?”

    Then, could you please explain your position in detail and where we disagree so that I can try to make progress, either in showing how I am wrong or how you are wrong.

    I already explained my position, in several comments, and you either ignored or lied about every single one of them. Why should I keep on explaining myself to someone who has already proven himself a pathological liar?

  311. says

    sabrekgb: I was merely stating several beliefs, both political and religious, that I had changed in the face of facts, experience and/or reason. If that confuses you, then trying to explain the evolution of my thoughts and beliefs in more detail would only confuse you more. That’s your problem, not mine, and it’s really not worth my time to help you with it.

  312. says

    @98 comments for the Brothers KKKrazzeepantsoff.

    “@317 Raging Bee

    I’ll leave the continuing legal discussion for Elightenment Liberal, but this jumped out at me:”

    As unintentional humor goes, that is solid gold.Your fellow douchenozzle may be the equivalent of Matt Staver. Larry Klayman and Orly Taitz all rolled into one.

  313. zmidponk says

    EnlightenmentLiberal #327:

    Citations please.

    New York penal code:

    http://law.onecle.com/new-york/penal/PEN0240.30_240.30.html

    § 240.30 Aggravated harassment in the second degree.
    A person is guilty of aggravated harassment in the second degree when,
    with intent to harass, annoy, threaten or alarm another person, he or
    she:
    1. Either (a) communicates with a person, anonymously or otherwise, by
    telephone, by telegraph, or by mail, or by transmitting or delivering
    any other form of written communication, in a manner likely to cause
    annoyance or alarm; or
    (b) causes a communication to be initiated by mechanical or electronic
    means or otherwise with a person, anonymously or otherwise, by
    telephone, by telegraph, or by mail, or by transmitting or delivering
    any other form of written communication, in a manner likely to cause
    annoyance or alarm

    #328:

    Read the thread. He said he would not be against a licensing scheme to own a gun at least as hard as driver’s ed.

    So, as long as he has a licence, he can carry a gun, etc. That utterly fails to materially change what I said, or the point I was making.

    Explain to me how this reasoning does not also applies to the fourth amendment, and criminals using the fourth amendment to do crime and get away with it. I’m waiting.

    Let me take all of your arguments, and turn them thus: “I trust the police. I’m a good guy. Why should I object to the police being able to search my email, listen in on my phone calls, etc.? If I restrict the police from doing that, I’m harming my own safety. If you disagree with me, all I can say is tell that to poor parents who lost their children to violence, and the criminals got off because the police didn’t have probable cause to do a search to get the evidence to convict the people responsible.”

    I’m not even going to address this because you have to twist what I said to a ludicrous degree to even have the glimmerings of a point, so it’s not even worth it.

    Thus: Your arguments as legal arguments are bullshit. As moral arguments – arguments whether we should have such laws – they’re also largely bullshit. You might be able to make some progress by doing a sober analysis of the harm and good, but that sober analysis of the fourth amendment must include fears of government tyranny, or you will come to the conclusion that the fourth amendment is also a bad idea. And once you admit that, arguing for gun rights becomes a whole lot easier.

    If you think that there is any real risk of the US government actually becoming that much of a tyrannical dictatorship that the only solution is getting your guns out to fight them, you only have a passing acquaintance with reality. If you think doing that would actually succeed against the military forces the government would have in such a situation, you don’t even have that.

  314. sabrekgb says

    @331 Raging Bee</B

    I was merely stating several beliefs, both political and religious, that I had changed in the face of facts, experience and/or reason. If that confuses you, then trying to explain the evolution of my thoughts and beliefs in more detail would only confuse you more. That’s your problem, not mine, and it’s really not worth my time to help you with it.

    You listed religious and political things in what appeared to be a chronological order, that’s what confused me.

  315. EnlightenmentLiberal says

    @zmidponk
    Can you cite me a single example where the law has been used in the way you describe? I am rather confident that any prosecutions on the grounds you identify above and beyond what I identify would be thrown out on first amendment grounds. As written, the law is horribly vague and far too encompassing. I mean – seriously – it’s now a crime to communicate with another with the intention to cause alarm? I can never write another political piece again (/sarcasm).

    So, as long as he has a licence, he can carry a gun, etc. That utterly fails to materially change what I said, or the point I was making.

    I think you fail to appreciate how much gun violence we could stop with just a simple measure. IMHO.

    If you think that there is any real risk of the US government actually becoming that much of a tyrannical dictatorship that the only solution is getting your guns out to fight them, you only have a passing acquaintance with reality. If you think doing that would actually succeed against the military forces the government would have in such a situation, you don’t even have that.

    Like other people in this thread, you are dodging. Please stop dodging. Please answer the questions. Do you think the fourth amendment is a good policy? Do you think the NSA / CIA spying program is a good policy? Do you think the policies are contradictory? If you think the NSA / CIA spying program is a bad idea, why? You cannot cite individual inconvenience nor individual harm – we barely knew about the program for a decade. It is a model program of baring inconveniencing the public or causing harm to the public (in the short term). Again, I fail to see any reasonable basis to argue against the NSA / CIA spying program except to uphold the principles of limited government, and the only reason to be for that is to be genuinely fearful of government tyranny. Again, I ask again please for an alternative basis. Or you could surprise me by being in favor of Orwellian spying policies.

    Contrary to what you wrote, I am not twisting your words at all. I am just following them to the logical Orwellian conclusions. If you trust the state and have no fear of it, why have a fourth amendment? Why be against the NSA / CIA spying programs?

    I’m sorry that I’m making you confront a huge foundational contradiction in your beliefs. I know it must be uncomfortable. I just wish our basic civics classes were better at this.

  316. EnlightenmentLiberal says

    @Raging Bee

    This is the same sort of bullshit I hear from creationists, flat-earthers, and other denialists: “Are you willing to admit that my ignorant, dishonest, and/or manipulative talking-points may be right after all, or are you closed-minded and dogmatic?”

    And when confronted by one, the only honest answer is “Yes, I may be mistaken. However, I consider the possibility highly unlikely because of evidence X, Y, and Z.” If someone asks you if you could be wrong about evolution, the answer damn well better be “yes”! Otherwise this whole skepticism thing – you’re doing it wrong.

    If rushed, an honest non-answer is “I am busy. I do not want to explain myself. Good day.”

    You’re not doing one of those. Thus far, you have said the equivalent that you could not be wrong about the Earth being round. You have not given your reasons for how you know the Earth is round. You have refused conversation in general. That is being close-minded and dogmatic. You are not engaging honestly.

  317. EnlightenmentLiberal says

    @Raging Bee

    Then, could you please explain your position in detail and where we disagree so that I can try to make progress, either in showing how I am wrong or how you are wrong.

    I already explained my position, in several comments, and you either ignored or lied about every single one of them. Why should I keep on explaining myself to someone who has already proven himself a pathological liar?

    On many points, I think you are lying (or fundamentally incapable of speaking English). For example, you did near verbatim that even if I could show you that you are wrong on the intent, meaning, and simple textual meaning of the second amendment, you would advocate against enforcing it. From where I come from, that is saying “fuck you” to the rule of law. In other words, I recognize that you have some interesting and IMHO not well thought out model of jurisprudence in your head which purports to recognize and respect the rule of law. I simply disagree with that conclusion. I believe that your idea of jurisprudence completely lacks the rule of law. Allowing the courts a carte blanche to “interest balance” any constitutional policy means the constitution is worth nothing.

    Note, however, that you wrote that in response to me asking for clarification. I never stated that you never stated your positions. Instead, I stated that I am still unsure of your position, and that I would like clarification. It’s rather odd that you would call me lair in response to a genuine inquiry as to your position.

    Honestly though – we have a problem at a foundational level. Just like when I engage with Christian young Earth creationists, I have to start with basic epistemology. That includes:

    Skepticism: If you find that you hold a (non-axiomatic) belief without justification, then you should throw it out. You apportion your confidence in your beliefs according to the strength of the available sound justifications. You never has absolute confidence in any justified belief. In other words, you can always be wrong about almost anything.

    Can we agree with that please? Can we agree that you might be in The Matrix? Can we agree that you might be in The Truman Show? Can we agree that General Relativity might be wrong? Can we agree that I might be able to show you evidence which could convince you that Reptilians are in control of every world government? If not – then I see no purpose for further communication. You would be close-minded, dogmatic, and just like the Christian creationist, utterly unwilling to revisit your world views, thus making this conversation pointless.

  318. zmidponk says

    EnlightenmentLiberal #336:

    @zmidponk
    Can you cite me a single example where the law has been used in the way you describe? I am rather confident that any prosecutions on the grounds you identify above and beyond what I identify would be thrown out on first amendment grounds. As written, the law is horribly vague and far too encompassing. I mean – seriously – it’s now a crime to communicate with another with the intention to cause alarm? I can never write another political piece again (/sarcasm).

    I’ve given you a direct citation, which is what you asked for, so, sorry, not playing your little game of goalpost moving. And the whole point is that this restricts what would otherwise be entirely unrestricted rights of free speech, as described in the First Amendment, so arguing that this contravenes the unrestricted right of free speech kinda misses the entire point of it even existing. Now, you are perfectly entitled to think this shouldn’t exist, or should be written differently, but your opinion doesn’t magically make it so.

    I think you fail to appreciate how much gun violence we could stop with just a simple measure. IMHO.

    Right, because driving licences have made deaths by car a thing of the past.

    Like other people in this thread, you are dodging. Please stop dodging. Please answer the questions. Do you think the fourth amendment is a good policy? Do you think the NSA / CIA spying program is a good policy? Do you think the policies are contradictory? If you think the NSA / CIA spying program is a bad idea, why? You cannot cite individual inconvenience nor individual harm – we barely knew about the program for a decade. It is a model program of baring inconveniencing the public or causing harm to the public (in the short term). Again, I fail to see any reasonable basis to argue against the NSA / CIA spying program except to uphold the principles of limited government, and the only reason to be for that is to be genuinely fearful of government tyranny. Again, I ask again please for an alternative basis. Or you could surprise me by being in favor of Orwellian spying policies.

    Contrary to what you wrote, I am not twisting your words at all. I am just following them to the logical Orwellian conclusions. If you trust the state and have no fear of it, why have a fourth amendment? Why be against the NSA / CIA spying programs?

    I’m sorry that I’m making you confront a huge foundational contradiction in your beliefs. I know it must be uncomfortable. I just wish our basic civics classes were better at this.

    No, you’re rather massively misinterpreting and twisting what I said, and, along the way, inserting beliefs of mine that seem to be utter inventions by you, then asking me to explain away what you claim is a contradiction based on your version of what I believe. And I’m simply saying ‘no’.

  319. EnlightenmentLiberal says

    @zmidponk
    Overbroad laws unconstitutionally restricting freedom of speech happen all the time. As this is a hobby of mine – being up to date on free speech laws – you’re going to have to do better. This is not goalposting moving. This is saying that your citation is insufficient. Even a conviction would be insufficient. I’ve read about plenty of similar convictions that are overturned at the higher courts. It’s a semi-regular thing.

    I want to see a high level court declaring that such speech is illegal using a sufficiently similar concrete example. I want to see a citation that the higher courts actually agree with your interpretation of the law, and its constitutionality. Thus far, merely citing the law does neither.

    As for the other matter, I see that you will continue to dodge, and will refuse to engage. So be it.

  320. EnlightenmentLiberal says

    Have to split into multiple posts. Earlier attempt got caught by moderation, which means it’ll never show up.

    @dogfightwithdogma
    Let’s see if I can get this citation chain right.

    STATE v. Grant GARVIN. Supreme Court of Rhode Island. April 29, 2008
    http://caselaw.findlaw.com/ri-supreme-court/1114973.html

    First, defendant does not have a fundamental right to unregulated travel by automobile within this state. “[T]his [C]ourt has expressly ruled that the right to operate a motor vehicle on the public highways is not a fundamental right.” Allard v. Department of Transportation, 609 A.2d 930, 937 (R.I.1992) (citing Berberian v. Petit, 118 R.I. 448, 455 n. 9, 374 A.2d 791, 794 n. 9 (1977)). Moreover, this Court has long recognized that “the right to use the public highways for travel by motor vehicles is one which properly can be regulated by the [L]egislature in the valid exercise of the police power of the state.” Berberian v. Lussier, 87 R.I. 226, 231-32, 139 A.2d 869, 872 (1958).

    It states that driving is not a fundamental right according to Allard. We’ll start with that one first. (It also cites Berberian, which we’ll get to later.)

    Berberian v. Petit. Supreme Court of Rhode Island. June 21, 1977.
    http://law.justia.com/cases/rhode-island/supreme-court/1977/374-a-2d-791.html
    Here, we see something else. The quote from the first opinion in context is referring only to a right protected by the fourteenth. There are other kinds of rights enjoyed by citizens that are not protected by the fourteenth’s “equal protection” clause.

    IMHO, a lot of bad case law is aroun the fourteenth. Initially, a lot of the work done by the fourteenth amendment was done by its “due process” clause, when it really should have been done by the “equal protections” clause. AFAIK, courts have since run with this bad jurisprudence, which leads to situations like this, where rights protected by the “equal protections” clause require the highest standard. Saying that the (purported) right to drive is not a “fundamental right” in context is not saying it’s “not a right”. It’s just saying that it’s not an important enough right to merit the “very special” protection of the “equal protection” clause.

    Interestingly enough, in that paragraph, it has a footnote, and in that footnote it rests this decision on Berberian v. Lussier. Remember that? It was cited above. And like the earlier opinion, it does not say anything in there is overturned. Let’s have a look at this case, shall we?

  321. EnlightenmentLiberal says

    Aram K. BERBERIAN v. Laure B. LUSSIER, Registrar of Motor Vehicles. Supreme Court of Rhode Island. March 26, 1958.
    http://scholar.google.com/scholar_case?case=10003377642086162533&q=Berberian+v.+Lussier++1958&hl=en&as_sdt=2006&as_vis=1

    We have, however, come to the conclusion that we can no longer completely subscribe to the proposition for which the LaPlante case stands. The use of the automobile as a necessary adjunct to the earning of a livelihood in modern life requires us in the interest of realism to conclude that the right to use an automobile on the public highways partakes of the nature of a liberty within the meaning of the constitutional guarantees of which the citizen may not be deprived without due process of law. In State v. Dalton, 22 R.I. 77, at page 86, 46 A. 234, at page 237, 48 L.R.A. 775, this court pointed out that the liberty which is guaranteed to every person by both our state and federal constitutions includes the right to be free from unreasonable interference in the pursuit of a livelihood.

    So, what I see is that Rhode Island has guaranteed that driving is indeed a guaranteed right, though not a “fundamental right” worthy of fourteenth amendment protections.

    This was a rather quick work. Hopefully I made no errors. I welcome corrections.

    PS:
    One last citation seems to vindicate my reasoning (at least for Rhode Island):
    Allard v. Department of Transp. Supreme Court of Rhode Island. May 13, 1992.
    https://www.courtlistener.com/ri/cQtV/allard-v-department-of-transp/

    III

    The petitioner next avers that the DOT’s refusal to renew his chauffeur’s license results in the denial of his constitutional right to work. The due process clause of the Fifth Amendment to the United States Constitution, as made applicable to the states through the Fourteenth Amendment, provides that no state shall deprive any person of “life, liberty, or property, without due process of law.” Article 1, section 2, of the Rhode Island Constitution provides the same.

    “Liberty, as meant by the clause is a broad concept including not only freedom from bodily restraint but also the right * * * to engage in any of the common occupations of life * * *.” In re Advisory Opinion to the House of Representatives, 519 A.2d 578, 581 (R.I. 1987); see also Board of Regents v. Roth, 408 U.S. 564, 572, 92 S.Ct. 2701, 2706-07, 33 L.Ed.2d 548, 558 (1972). Hence, the gravamen of petitioner’s argument is that the denial of his right to operate a motor vehicle is in effect a denial of his constitutional right to liberty such that he is no longer free “to engage in any of the common occupations of life.”

    We have recognized that

    “[w]here the legislation infringes upon explicit constitutional rights * * * or upon interests fundamental to our society of ordered liberty, such as the right to travel or to privacy * * * legislative enactments must be narrowly drawn to express only a compelling state interest. * * * But where no such guarantee or fundamental interest is infringed on by state legislation, and where the states legislative aim is to promote the health and safety of its citizens ? an aim at the core of its police power ? the challenger, to prevail under the due process clause, must demonstrate that there is no rational connection between the enacted regulation and the legislative aim.” 519 A.2d at 582.

    Further, we have recognized that:

    “The use of the automobile as a necessary adjunct to the earning of a livelihood in modern life requires us in the interest of realism to conclude that the right to use an automobile on the public highways partakes of the nature of a liberty within the meaning of the constitutional guarantees of which the citizen may not be deprived without due process of law.” Berberian v. Lussier, 87 R.I. 226, 231, 139 A.2d 869, 872 (1958).

    However, this court has expressly ruled that the right to operate a motor vehicle on the public highways is not a fundamental right. Berberian v. Petit, 118 R.I. 448, 455 n. 9, 374 A.2d 791, 794 n. 9 (1977).

    As indicated, § 31-10-4 provides for the classification and examination of chauffeurs and provides that the DOT “may impose such rules and regulations * * * as it may deem necessary for the safety and welfare of the traveling public.” Pursuant to this delegated authority, the DOT adopted 49 C.F.R. § 391.41(b)(10) of the federal safety regulations. In order to show that the adoption of 49 C.F.R. § 391.41(b)(10) is violative of due process clauses *938 of both the Federal and the State Constitutions, petitioner bears the burden of demonstrating that there is no rational connection between the enacted regulation and the legislative aim. However, petitioner has not satisfied his burden. Further we believe that the visual requirements of 49 C.F.R. § 391.41(b)(10) do in fact bear a logical and rational relation to the legislative aim of protecting the public’s safety and welfare on the state’s roadways.

    PPS: I’ll see if I can find some SCOTUS links now – if any!

    PPPS: Apparently I can get away with 4 links.

  322. says

    And when confronted by one, the only honest answer is “Yes, I may be mistaken. However, I consider the possibility highly unlikely because of evidence X, Y, and Z.”

    Not if the question is already settled, and/or the evidence has already been presented — as, in this thread, I have already presented my evidence and reasoning, and you proved yourself unwilling to address any of it.

  323. says

    For example, you did near verbatim that even if I could show you that you are wrong on the intent, meaning, and simple textual meaning of the second amendment, you would advocate against enforcing it.

    Once again, you’re lying. Quote me actually saying that, or admit you’re full of shit.

    And besides, you never actually showed any of what you hypothetically offered to show, so my hypothetical response to such isn’t really relevant. You tried to bluff, I called your bluff, and now you’re trying to handwave your way out of a losing hand.

  324. zmidponk says

    EnlightenmentLiberal #340:

    @zmidponk
    Overbroad laws unconstitutionally restricting freedom of speech happen all the time. As this is a hobby of mine – being up to date on free speech laws – you’re going to have to do better. This is not goalposting moving. This is saying that your citation is insufficient. Even a conviction would be insufficient. I’ve read about plenty of similar convictions that are overturned at the higher courts. It’s a semi-regular thing.

    I want to see a high level court declaring that such speech is illegal using a sufficiently similar concrete example. I want to see a citation that the higher courts actually agree with your interpretation of the law, and its constitutionality. Thus far, merely citing the law does neither.

    In #327, you wanted a citation because you ‘doubt that standard exists’. In #336, after me providing a citation showing that standard does exist in law, you then wanted an instance of that law actually being used. Despite me simply refusing to follow your updated standard, you now say that even that isn’t enough – you want a ‘higher court’ agreeing with that law, basically. And you’re not moving goalposts.

    Need I underline the point even more that what you’re doing is the very definition of ‘moving goalposts’?

    As for the other matter, I see that you will continue to dodge, and will refuse to engage. So be it.

    Well, if you want to call me not accepting your wildly incorrect and twisted version of what I believe ‘dodging’, so be it.

  325. EnlightenmentLiberal says

    Ok. You want to go point by point? Time to be pithy!

    @192, Raging Bee. I argued IMHO compellingly that “interest balancing” means that the constitutional rights are worthless. If the court can merely “interest balance” a right out of existence, then the right is worthless. The entire purpose of constitutional rights is to put them out of consideration of interest balancing by the congress and the courts. Only a constitutional measure can change that. No reply.

    @207, Raging Bee. More of the above. Already countered.

    Also addressed how every example Raging Bee gave has no bearing on this argument. Examples were cases of civil suit, purported to be exceptions to the first amendment, demonstrating a lack of knowledge on this topic. No reply.

    Argues that courts can decide that the writers of constitutional amendments were factually mistaken, and thus can unilaterally abridge guaranteed rights when the right was spelled out. Politely disagreed for the obvious reasons (already mentioned else-thread).

    Mistaken about the meaning of “well regulated”. Also corrected by someone else. Corrected numerous times on that. No admittance of error.

    Mistaken about the militia being something other than an armed gang. The militia is the people. Corrected numerous times on that. Seemingly willfully ignorant on this point.

    Argues that the right to be happy and safe trumps the right to own guns. Countered numerous times. For example, I see no reason why this could not also be applied to the fourth. No reply.

    @216, Raging Bee. Argues that the constitution has improved via reinterpreting the law to be something other than what it is. Gives examples. I replied with how most of the examples are the exact opposite of that. Someone else also replied with many examples of how we got bad law by pretending the law meant something than what it meant. No reply.

    @217, Raging Bee. Again argues that safety trumps rights. Still no reply to my fourth amendment questions.

    @231, Raging Bee. Ignorant of the history of the individual right to keep and bear arms that existed during the time of the writing of the second amendment. Seemingly willfully ignorant on this topic.

    Calls me a libertarian, despite being a socialist, and advocating several radical socialist policies in this thread IIRC. Rather odd.

    Again argues that we should reinterpret the laws if we think the laws are bad laws.

    Argues against a right to suicide. I didn’t address that, but I find that most distateful for the obvious reasons. Although, this seems to just be a confusion between “unregulated right” and “regulated ‘privilege’ [right]“.

    @236, Raging Bee. Persists in mistaken understanding of “well-regulated”.

    @250, Raging Bee. Continues to misunderstand militia as something other than the people, despite the Federalist arguing that at a minimum we should require everyone to have a gun, and the militia act of 1792 requiring every individual to purchase a gun. IIRC, no meaningful reply.

    @256, Raging Bee. Argues that the founders never intended for armed rebellion. Willfully ignorant. See: the American War of Independence, and many, many, many quotes from the founders.

    Asked for a citation where the Federalist advocated armed rebellion.
    http://www.constitution.org/fed/federa46.htm

    Extravagant as the supposition is, let it however be made. Let a regular army, fully equal to the resources of the country, be formed; and let it be entirely at the devotion of the federal government; still it would not be going too far to say, that the State governments, with the people on their side, would be able to repel the danger. The highest number to which, according to the best computation, a standing army can be carried in any country, does not exceed one hundredth part of the whole number of souls; or one twenty-fifth part of the number able to bear arms. This proportion would not yield, in the United States, an army of more than twenty-five or thirty thousand men. To these would be opposed a militia amounting to near half a million of citizens with arms in their hands, officered by men chosen from among themselves, fighting for their common liberties, and united and conducted by governments possessing their affections and confidence. It may well be doubted, whether a militia thus circumstanced could ever be conquered by such a proportion of regular troops.

    PS: He figures the United States population at the time is about 3,000,000 (30,000 times 100). He figures that about 750,000 can carry arms (30,000 times 25). He figures that the militia is about 500,000 strong. Do the math. He is talking literally about more or less every able bodied man in the United States taking up a gun and fighting against the (federal) government. Thus proving my point of armed rebellion, and that the militia is identical with the people.

    Also: Thomas Jefferson:
    http://www.theatlantic.com/past/docs/issues/96oct/obrien/blood.htm

    What country before ever existed a century & a half without a rebellion? & what country can preserve it’s liberties if their rulers are not warned from time to time that their people preserve the spirit of resistance? Let them take arms. The remedy is to set them right as to facts, pardon & pacify them. What signify a few lives lost in a century or two? The tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time with the blood of patriots & tyrants. It is it’s natural manure.

    I’m too lazy to look up others. It’s not my job to do homework for Raging Bee.

    @257, Raging Bee. Again makes the mistaken argument that the militia are not the people.

    @260, Raging Bee. Again argues that “facts on the ground” and “common sense” trump the law.

    Again makes the mistaken argument that the militia are not the people.

    @261, Raging Bee. Argues that the first amendment does not guarantee the right of assembly because slaves did not have the right of assembly. Not sure what to make of this. I should have realized around here that I could not overcome Raging Bee extreme cognitive dissonance in just a simple online text conversation. So, like any good public debate, I’m aiming more to persuade others rather than the close-minded Raging Bee.

    @267, Raging Bee. Quotes the federalist, and somehow comes to the exact opposite conclusion of the quote. Willfully ignorant.

    Cites quote talking about how all the people should be armed, and yet argues that this doesn’t mean the militia are the people. I am dumbfounded.

    Argues some non-sequitur about how the congress can pass laws to restrict guns from dangerous people. Not sure why. That point was already agreed to by everyone.

    Cites another quote where the Federalist says that the American people enjoy the advantage of being armed. Simply does not register with Raging Bee. Does not affect his other arguments. Doesn’t give him pause. Doesn’t make him admit that the militia is the people, and that the right to keep and bear arms is a right, and an individual right. Rather, argues that the right no longer makes sense. No explicit conclusion was derived from “no longer making sense”. However, given the rest of the tone of his posts, it’s rather clear that this is warrant enough to pretend the second amendment means something else, or to ignore it entirely, or to argue that other interests compel us to overrule the second amendment.

    Overextrapolates from another citation, invents things that are not there, and falls prey to the same false dichotomy that I identified in post 252 (“childish reasoning” that there cannot be both justified armed rebellions and unjustified armed rebellions).

    @277, Raging Bee. Lies about earlier conversation about slaves and the second amendment.

    @282, Raging Bee. Again argues that “relevant facts on the ground” trump constitutional rights.

    @295, Raging Bee. Again argues that even if the second amendment means what I say it means, it should be overruled.

    @301, Raging Bee. Displays a startling and shocking amount of respect for the police.

    @315, Raging Bee. Again argues that even if the second amendment is an individual right to keep and bear arms, other considerations overrule it.

    @329, Raging Bee. Denies being close-minded. Already addressed.

    @330, Raging Bee. Denies basic skepticism and rational thinking by claiming infallibility on some topics.

    Calls me a liar in response to me asking for clarification. Classy.

    @345, Raging Bee. Asked for quotes where he would ignore the rule of law, ignore the second amendment, and so on. At this point, after doing the recap, it’s a rather comical request. Raging Bee has left the real world. He cannot even maintain logical consistency, so deep is his cognitive dissonance. I end with this:

    [EL:] For example, you did near verbatim that even if I could show you that you are wrong on the intent, meaning, and simple textual meaning of the second amendment, you would advocate against enforcing it.

    Once again, you’re lying. Quote me actually saying that, or admit you’re full of shit.

    And second, you know as well as I do that the Constitution mentions a lot of concepts — such as “well-regulated militia” and “due process of law” — whose exact meaning changes over time as circumstances change.

    More importantly, our right to well-ordered liberty trumps our right to buy and carry whatever guns we want.

    [EL:]Similarly, the second amendment expressly codifies the interest balancing that someone’s right to own and carry a gun generally outweighs someone else’s right to be safe from gun violence.

    Bullshit. It is the duty of ALL governments to protect people from violence and crime; and the Constitution explicitly says the US shall guarantee “equal PROTECTION of the laws” and “a republican form of government.” So yes, the people have a right to be safe from gun violence, and that right limits the right to own guns.

    [EL:]The intent, understanding, surrounding culture, etc. at the time of adoption.

    [T]he Founders understood that circumstances would most likely change, and keep on changing, after they were dead; and that future generations’ application of the law in the real world would have to change with it.

    Actually, when interpreting the Constitution and deciding how it applies to this or that real-world situation (what I’m doing here, and what Federal judges do), the Federalist Papers are flatly trumped by relevant facts on the ground, common-sense analysis of the consequences of laws, relevant case-law and precedent, and, of course, the text of the Constitution itself. The Federalist papers are quite useful, of course, but far from a definitive guide, especially when we’re talking about present-day threats to our freedoms and social order.

    They most certainly do not trump basic common sense about what governments are and how they tend to work. My points that you’re hyperventilating about were based on common sense, and the text of the Constitution itself (which, unlike the Federalist Papers, actually has the force of law); so if you want to refute them, you have to do it with common sense, facts and reasoning, not reference to the Federalist papers, and certainly not with the empty bluffing arguments from authority I’m seeing from you here.

    No, because it’s not supported by any reasonable interpretation of the text of the Constitution (which you didn’t mention in your list of factors that I would allegedly use to support it). Also, those “relevant facts on the ground” that you cite don’t really support such a conclusion either. So what, exactly, leads you to insinuate that I would?

    And even when you account for the WHOLE Second Amendment, you also have to account for the fact that it’s just one sentence in a much larger document. All in all, your constitutional interpretation is pure dishonest bullshit.

    I said that the Second Amendment was not the whole of the Constitution, and cannot be interpreted in a vacuum. Only by pure malicious dishonesty can you interpret that statement of obvious fact as “pretend it is not there.”

  326. EnlightenmentLiberal says

    @zmidponk
    I asked for a citation regarding constitutional law. I expected a citation regarding a high court opinion on the matter, not some state law which is likely untested in this matter, and which very likely would never hold up in federal court in this regard. Sorry – alarming someone is not necessarily a crime. It can be, but you need other considerations. The cited law is unconstitutional on its face, and would be thrown out in court (or at least large parts of it would be thrown out, leaving more or less the position I outlined above).

  327. sabrekgb says

    Also: Another day, another trip to the store, another oddly uneventful occasion.

    When is it i should be expecting all these people to clear out of the store i am in, or to be quaking in fear, or to…well, act any different than they usually do?

    The cute girl who smiled back at me at the checkout counter, the old dude i helped get a bag of chips from the top of the rack, the off duty cop who asked me what caliber i was carrying, or the mom and her two kids who not only didn’t care, but actually got into line behind me…when are these people going to start being alarmed at my lawful open carry?

  328. EnlightenmentLiberal says

    @sabrekgb
    To be fair, that’s probably part of the country you live in. I expect a wildly different reaction if you tried that in some places in the U.S. IIRC, I remember a story of this one guy open carrying an AR 15 in Cali somewhere for a while. People would repeatedly call the police about the guy, and the police would (understandably) stop and question him about it every time. Of course, all legal. IIRC, the police had to start explaining to the people calling in to warn and “complain” that what he was doing was perfectly legal. /end anecdote

  329. says

    Once again, EL, you flat-out lie about what I said, and continue to repeat the lies even after I’ve compared my own words to your misrepresentations of same. Classic example:

    You: @260, Raging Bee. Again argues that “facts on the ground” and “common sense” trump the law.

    What I actually said @260: Actually, when interpreting the Constitution and deciding how it applies to this or that real-world situation (what I’m doing here, and what Federal judges do), the Federalist Papers are flatly trumped by relevant facts on the ground, common-sense analysis of the consequences of laws, relevant case-law and precedent, and, of course, the text of the Constitution itself. The Federalist papers are quite useful, of course, but far from a definitive guide, especially when we’re talking about present-day threats to our freedoms and social order.

    Note the words I’ve bolded: I said the FEDERALIST PAPERS were trumped by facts and common sense. Not the Constitution itself or any law. Don’t you ever get tired of being such a pants-on-head pathological liar? You’re embarrassing yourself, and boring the hell out of me.

    Also, the Federalist quote in your comment #347 does NOT advocate armed rebellion AGAINST the government; it says that the state militias, “united and conducted by governments possessing their affections and confidence,” could DEFEND the people’s LEGAL rights against unlawful Federal incursions.

    And finally, Jefferson advocated armed rebellion against governments that VIOLATED the laws or the people’s legal rights. And quite frankly, Jefferson’s romantic vision of a harmonious homogeneous people “taking up arms” without causing bitter, impoverishing civil strife has been shown to be both simplistic and out of date, especially after pond-scum like the KKK and the Tea Party have used that same rhetoric to justify armed rebellion to SUPPRESS the people’s legal liberties. Jefferson’s rosy rhetoric is not a guide to Constitutional interpretation, nor was it meant to be.

    And let’s face it, boy: the rest of your last comment is just a disordered mishmash of quotes from previous comments, with no attempt to tie them together or show how any of what I said is wrong. You’re running out of steam, we’re not playing your stupid little game anymore, we’re tired of hearing you insisting you’ve won, you’re getting cranky, and it’s past your bedtime.

  330. says

    111 comments for the delusional duet and FINALLY, something that makes sense @343:

    “Did I just post that in the wrong thread? Shit. Sorry.”

    Truer words were never spoken by either of you moronz. Whatever you post, wherever you post it–it’s gonna be on the wrong thread.

    Well, there has been one good thing to come out of this.

    Both sabrekgb (oooooooooooooooooh, scary name!!!) and “Enlgihtenment Liberal” (a more obviously self-contradictory blognomen has not, afaia, been cobbled up) have proven to any who are still reading this thread that they are both teh TeabaggistbatshitKKKrazzeepantsshitforbrainsmoronz that they claim to NOT be.

  331. sabrekgb says

    @353 democommie

    sabrekgb (oooooooooooooooooh, scary name!!!)

    Are you fucking kidding me, democommie?

    You and your “Z” fetish lack a lot of self awareness.

    Hypocrite Troll says “Troll as I say, not as I Troll.”

  332. sabrekgb says

    @51 EL

    True enough, though that does underscore my education and normalization reasons for doing it. I think there’s also a significant difference in perception between the carry of a holstered pistol and a long gun.

    Still, up-thread it was explicitly stated that it was impossible to have an honest conversation with someone who was armed, and that people, seeing such a thing, would either be terrified or flat out run away. This, while anecdotal, is a counterpoint to that. If people where i live can go about their day just fine in the presence of peaceably open-carried weapons, then it puts the lie to the claim that alarm is an inherent reaction, and shows that people elsewhere could adapt just fine.

    A minor point, and not one that touches on the legal underpinnings or the right itself, but something i felt was worth noting. It’s also important to note that i don’t live in a red state, a small town, or somewhere “redneck”.

    *shrug* A counter to the fear-mongering argument we saw put forward above, if you will.

    I don’t think Raging Bee or (lol) democommie are going to change their minds in the slightest, but who knows who else might slog through these 350 someodd comments. Your attempts to enlighten regarding the constitutional basis, especially, i think would be very helpful to our hypothetical audience. Kudos.

  333. says

    When is it i should be expecting all these people to clear out of the store i am in, or to be quaking in fear, or to…well, act any different than they usually do?

    When is it I should be expecting criminals to start ganging up on me because I don’t have a gun? I’ve walked through several parts of lots of cities, rich and poor neighborhoods, in and out of the USA, and no such thing has happened yet — this despite the fact that I’VE NEVER SEEN ANY OTHER CIVILIANS CARRYING GUNS EITHER. So how much longer do we have to wait to see, say, Adams Morgan descending into crime and chaos because none of the yuppies, residents or bartenders there have guns at the ready?

  334. says

    Still, up-thread it was explicitly stated that it was impossible to have an honest conversation with someone who was armed…

    If the armed person is also a fucking liar, and refuses to acknowledge observable reality or anyone else’s legitimate concerns, as you have done here, then yes, it would be impossible to have an honest conversation with such a person; and the gun would only make him more untrustworthy. People like that are burdensome enough without guns.

  335. zmidponk says

    EnlightenmentLiberal #348:

    @zmidponk
    I asked for a citation regarding constitutional law. I expected a citation regarding a high court opinion on the matter, not some state law which is likely untested in this matter, and which very likely would never hold up in federal court in this regard. Sorry – alarming someone is not necessarily a crime. It can be, but you need other considerations. The cited law is unconstitutional on its face, and would be thrown out in court (or at least large parts of it would be thrown out, leaving more or less the position I outlined above).

    You really aren’t as knowledgeable about this as you obviously think you are. The particular example I gave you was from the New York penal code. It’s been on the books for quite a while. Do you want to know how many states, in total, have similar laws regarding this, calling it ‘criminal harrassment’, ‘criminal menace’ or ‘stalking’? 50. Yep, that’s right, every single one. According to you, though, every single one of those states have passed unconstitutional laws and should strike them from the books immediately.

    From what you’re saying, you appear to think that any law, decision or anything else that does not precisely conform to the Constitution as written is unconstitutional. I can only conclude, therefore, that you think it actually IS legal to shout ‘FIRE’ in a crowded theater, as the First Amendment places no restrictions on free speech at all, especially as the legal argument as to why it isn’t is that this would cause alarm, which, in turn, could cause situations detrimental to people’s safety. As current legal precedent actually holds that doing this actually is not permitted, using the same (rather twisted and bizarre) logic you displayed earlier, I must therefore conclude that this inexorably leads to the situation that the Fourth Amendment must be getting repealed any day now, as this is an example of people’s rights being restricted in the interests of protecting other people’s safety. Or you’re talking pure, premium-grade shite. One of the two.

  336. EnlightenmentLiberal says

    @Raging Bee

    And let’s face it, boy: the rest of your last comment is just a disordered mishmash of quotes from previous comments, with no attempt to tie them together or show how any of what I said is wrong. You’re running out of steam, we’re not playing your stupid little game anymore, we’re tired of hearing you insisting you’ve won, you’re getting cranky, and it’s past your bedtime.

    Ok. New pithy version point by point instead of post by post.

    You are wrong about the meaning of “militia”. The Federalist makes it exceedingly clear that more or less every adult (male) shall be armed, and that this is an “advantage” enjoyed by the American people, and that this would overthrow tyrants. Thus the militia is synonymous with the people.

    You are wrong about the meaning of “well-regulated”.

    You are wrong about the plain text meaning of the second amendment in general. The second amendment’s clear and simple plain text meaning is to guarantee individual gun rights.

    You argued that the framers never intended for the militia to be used for armed rebellion against the government. Then you admitted it was intended in part to be used for armed rebellion against the federal, but not the state. Then you admitted that it was also intended to be used against the state from the Jefferson quote, but that this view is outdated and should be ignored. Talk about the ever-shifting sands of your position. Also, the final view is a bullshit view of jurisprudence, which I shall cover in just a sec.

    You have repeatedly stated that your effective position is that no matter what the text of the second amendment might be, you would advocate jurisprudence which would never allow a guarantee of individual gun rights. This jurisprudence is bullshit. You also continue to repeat this position, and yet you continue to bald-faced lie that this is also not your position. I am so utterly confused how you can be so dishonest.

    Earlier, you argued that all rights are subject to interest balancing, and “facts on the ground” and “common sense”. If so, then the constitutional rights have value only sofaras the congress and the courts decide that it’s a good idea, which means that they are no better than a mere congressional act, which means that constitutional rights are not worth the paper they are printed on. We would no longer live in a constitutional republic. Instead, we would live in a mob-democracy. Think about your jurisprudence for a second and realize how it would literally gut the constitution.

    Your jurisprudence also states that the right to be safe trumps other purported hypothetical constitutionally guaranteed rights. I noted that this would also gut the fourth amendment. I again note that the NSA / CIA spying program has been wildly effective by certain criteria: It has barely inconvenienced the public. It has barely made any private matters public. Evidence of this is that we barely knew about it for a decade. We also have lots of evidence showing that the NSA / CIA have frequently communicated details to basic law enforcement like the FBI to catch regular criminals like drug dealers which has often led to convictions (citations on demand). By your seeming jurisprudence, I cannot imagine how you are against the NSA / CIA spying program when used on Americans. However, I also bet that you do like the fourth amendment, and you are against the NSA / CIA spying program, and I cannot fathom why. This seems to be a glaring hole, a huge contradiction, in your stand – one which you seemingly refuse to comment on. Perhaps because you recognize the huge hypocrisy?

    You also argued that your jurisprudence is the basis for the “defamation exception” to the first amendment. There is no such thing. The first amendment was originally a prohibition against federal law only, and federal law originally had no jurisdiction on civil suits like defamation. Later, when the 1st was incorporated by the 14th, then an exception was made, because that was neither the intent or common understanding of the 1st nor 14th. In short, you have no clue what you are talking about.

    You also advocated a jurisprudence where the law would change meaning over time. I pointed out the absurdity of this. You tried to come up with cases where this resulted in good things, and I showed case by case that most of your examples was actually the opposite – was actually the courts merely applying originalism (of some variety) to the text and not this “the law changes meaning over time” insanity. Someone else chimed in with a bunch of examples of people breaking originalism to horrible results.

    You claim to be infallible on some topics. You fail skepticism forever.

    You accuse me of lying without citing specific examples. I am curious if you have any. Whereas, when I accuse you of lying, I cite specific examples, give quotes, etc. AFAIK, I have not been dishonest in the entire thread.

  337. EnlightenmentLiberal says

    @zmidponk
    No, it is you who has no clue what they’re talking about. There are plenty of states with laws on books against sodomy, against abortion. There are plenty of states whose constitution even requires you to believe in god to get public office. Of course, none of those are enforceable.

    I’m sorry that you have no clue what you’re talking about.

  338. EnlightenmentLiberal says

    @zmidponk
    Ack, hit submit too early.

    I can only conclude, therefore, that you think it actually IS legal to shout ‘FIRE’ in a crowded theater, as the First Amendment places no restrictions on free speech at all, especially as the legal argument as to why it isn’t is that this would cause alarm, which, in turn, could cause situations detrimental to people’s safety.

    Dishonest much?

    Quoting me, from earlier in the thread:

    I agree that communicating actual threats is illegal. What you said is way above and beyond that standard, and I doubt that standard exists, or at least I hope it does not. Hell, by that standard, you could argue that what I’m doing in this thread makes some people “feel unsafe”. Your standard is bullshit.

    IIRC, harassment is not a one-off. You have to be doing targeted communication against a particular individual. The individual must have requested that you break off communication targeted at them. Then you do it again. Only then does it become harassment. Note the specific wording I used. If you’re in the public space, and the speech is directed at the public in general and it is not aimed at you (such as by following you), then it can never be harassment.

    I fail to see how you can honestly state that my position is free speech has no restrictions whatsoever. You appear to have reading comprehension issues.

    Also, about yelling fire in a crowded threatrehouse. Bullshit example. I’ve seen it done. No harm was caused. The general idea behind it has some merit, but bad example in general.

    Furthermore, that was written by Justice Oliver Wendell Holmes. Let’s remember what he was actually doing in the opinion where he wrote that. He was sending to jail several Yiddish-speaking socialists who just fled the war by coming to the US, and were trying to argue against involvement in the war, with brochures printed in a language that no one could read (Yiddish). Arguably, they were yelling fire when there was a real fire, arguing about the dangers of war when there was a war, and yet they were sent to jail. So, let’s keep in that mind whenever someone brings up the much overpraised Justice Oliver Wendell Holmes and that horrible, horrible affront to justice and free speech.

    And the rest of your post seems to rely on these blatantly false assumptions, and I see no need to respond to the rest of it.

    PS: Shamelessly ripped from Hitchens.

  339. says

    EL: Funny how you only address the LAST paragraph of my comment, and breeze over the preceding bit where I show what a fucking liar you are.

    You are wrong about the meaning of “militia”. The Federalist makes it exceedingly clear that more or less every adult (male) shall be armed, and that this is an “advantage” enjoyed by the American people, and that this would overthrow tyrants. Thus the militia is synonymous with the people.

    The Constitution itself does not make that clear. And it’s the Constitution, not the Federalist papers, that has actual force of law.

    Your jurisprudence also states that the right to be safe trumps other purported hypothetical constitutionally guaranteed rights…

    Aaaand you’re back to lying about what I said. I only said that the right to be safe trumps the right to own and carry guns.

    IIRC, harassment is not a one-off. You have to be doing targeted communication against a particular individual. The individual must have requested that you break off communication targeted at them. Then you do it again. Only then does it become harassment.

    Are you deliberately lying here, or are you just fucking stupid? If I say or do something to make another person feel demeaned, intimidated, unsafe or insecure, that’s harassment. It doesn’t have to be repeated.

  340. says

    And no, for the umpteenth time, the militia is NOT “synonymous with the people.” Even if ALL able-bodied men are included, that’s still only a subset of the people. Your “militia=people” crap is nothing but an empty slogan.

  341. zmidponk says

    EnlightenmentLiberal:

    @zmidponk
    No, it is you who has no clue what they’re talking about. There are plenty of states with laws on books against sodomy, against abortion. There are plenty of states whose constitution even requires you to believe in god to get public office. Of course, none of those are enforceable.

    I’m sorry that you have no clue what you’re talking about.

    Except you are saying this particular law, and the ones like it in every other state, is likewise unenforceable based on…well, your say-so, basically.

    I fail to see how you can honestly state that my position is free speech has no restrictions whatsoever.

    I was merely being as honest about your positions as you were being about mine. Following your example, you might say.

  342. EnlightenmentLiberal says

    @zmidponk

    I was merely being as honest about your positions as you were being about mine. Following your example, you might say.

    As I mentioned to Raging Bee, I am unaware of any dishonesty on my part. If you wish to cite specific examples, we can talk about them. Thus far, I believe I have been honest in my conversation with you, and in this thread in general.

    Except you are saying this particular law, and the ones like it in every other state, is likewise unenforceable based on…well, your say-so, basically.

    Correct. I didn’t feel the need off-hand to cite case law to the contrary. I’ve done enough homework for various people in this thread already.

  343. EnlightenmentLiberal says

    @Raging Bee

    Are you deliberately lying here, or are you just fucking stupid? If I say or do something to make another person feel demeaned, intimidated, unsafe or insecure, that’s harassment. It doesn’t have to be repeated.

    IIRC, as a general rule, it may be harassment according to common usage of English, but it’s not criminally prosecutable, because of the first amendment. That was obviously my point.

    (Civil law case law is a little more gray. It depends on the state. which is a little more open than I led to believe. I believe such deviations are bullshit. Ex: “false light” suits are bullshit.)

    I am not lying. As far as I know, I’m also correct. If you want to provide a citation otherwise – and I mean a high court decision and not merely some law on the books – then I’m interested.

    Your jurisprudence also states that the right to be safe trumps other purported hypothetical constitutionally guaranteed rights…

    Aaaand you’re back to lying about what I said. I only said that the right to be safe trumps the right to own and carry guns.

    I do not understand your complaint here. Gun rights are a purported hypothetical constitutional right. You said the right to safety trumps gun rights. Thus, you say that the right to be safe trumps other purported hypothetical constitutionally guaranteed rights (such as gun rights).

    Do you speak English?

  344. zmidponk says

    EnlightenmentLiberal:

    As I mentioned to Raging Bee, I am unaware of any dishonesty on my part. If you wish to cite specific examples, we can talk about them. Thus far, I believe I have been honest in my conversation with you, and in this thread in general.

    Well, you have a very interesting definition of ‘honest’. If you’re really floundering due to immense levels of stupidity, instead of just being a bald-faced liar, start with whether I actually do trust the government. If you successfully manage to ascertain where you went wrong there, try seeing if you can then tell the difference between direct and rather roundabout, indirect threats to safety. If you manage to get that far, try then to see if you can tell the difference between restricting rights and eliminating them.

    Correct. I didn’t feel the need off-hand to cite case law to the contrary. I’ve done enough homework for various people in this thread already.

    Guess the discussion is done, then, as I refuse to try to prove your arguments.

  345. says

    As I mentioned to Raging Bee, I am unaware of any dishonesty on my part. If you wish to cite specific examples, we can talk about them.

    Funny how you’re only willing to make that promise to zmidponk, while refusing to talk to me about the lies I explicitly cited.

    I do not understand your complaint here. Gun rights are a purported hypothetical constitutional right. You said the right to safety trumps gun rights. Thus, you say that the right to be safe trumps other purported hypothetical constitutionally guaranteed rights (such as gun rights).

    This is both factually and logically false. If I say something about ONE right, it does not automatically follow that I believe the same thing of other rights, nor does it mean anyone is expected to believe it of other rights.

  346. says

    “Correct. I didn’t feel the need off-hand to cite case law to the contrary. I’ve done enough homework for various people in this thread already.”

    I think we’re through the looking glass here folks.

  347. says

    Sabrekgb is a gunzloonKKKranKKK and Eliminates Loosley* has a manner of “arguing” that reminds one of Milesius at his most tedious or, perhaps worser, the Threadpirate Mroberts.

    * Spews shit

  348. EnlightenmentLiberal says

    @zmidponk

    Well, you have a very interesting definition of ‘honest’. If you’re really floundering due to immense levels of stupidity, instead of just being a bald-faced liar, start with whether I actually do trust the government. If you successfully manage to ascertain where you went wrong there, try seeing if you can then tell the difference between direct and rather roundabout, indirect threats to safety. If you manage to get that far, try then to see if you can tell the difference between restricting rights and eliminating them.

    I guess I’ll claim stupidity, because you’ve lost me.

    I agree that there is a difference between restricting rights and eliminating rights. I’ve been advocating throughout the entire thread that we should restrict gun rights, but it’s still gun rights. Recently, I’ve also been stating that driving is a right, even though it’s also restricted. Again, I don’t know why you think I’m making that false conflation. I’m not. Why do you think I’m doing that? I’d really like to clear up any confusion.

    As for free speech, I fear we’re talking past each other. Again, certain kinds of threats, IIRC SCOTUS used the term “true threats”, are illegal. It’s a fair restriction on free speech rights. It’s constitutional, and the case law supports that conclusion.

    But the law you cited is something fundamentally different.

    A person is guilty of aggravated harassment in the second degree when,
    with intent to harass, annoy, threaten or alarm another person, he or
    she:
    1. Either (a) communicates with a person, anonymously or otherwise, by
    telephone, by telegraph, or by mail, or by transmitting or delivering
    any other form of written communication, in a manner likely to cause
    annoyance or alarm; or
    (b) causes a communication to be initiated by mechanical or electronic
    means or otherwise with a person, anonymously or otherwise, by
    telephone, by telegraph, or by mail, or by transmitting or delivering
    any other form of written communication, in a manner likely to cause
    annoyance or alarm

    Right now, in this thread: I am a person. I have the intent to alarm other people, and to annoy them (some people anyway). I am effectively transmitting communication by “telephone, telegraph, mail, or other form of written communication” and by “electronic means”. I am doing so in a manner likely to cause annoyance or alarm. Thus the law says I’m guilty of aggravated harassment in the second degree, which is a ludicrous conclusion.

    Again, by that definition, when a newspaper publishes reports about the war, that could be done with intent to alarm, and in a manner likely to cause alarm. That’s also aggrevated harassment (in the second degree)? This is ludicrous.

    You really need case law that this is protected speech? That’s like finding case law that praying in public is a protected right – it’s so obvious that finding actual specific case law for it would be difficult.

    Like… it’s like finding a peer reviewed paper giving definitions for introductory biology terms and very basic concepts. It’s very hard to find, because stuff like that is considered “too basic” to be published. Similarly, this issue is so basic that there wouldn’t be any court decisions on it.

    I might be able to find something that speech in general which is offensive is protected, like the SCOTUS decision that protected the KKK march. Is that good enough for you? I might be able to find some case which decides a much more complex and intricate issue, and in passing refers to the right of free speech which covers that case, but I don’t know offhand how to find such a case.

    Guess the discussion is done, then, as I refuse to try to prove your arguments.

    Meh, I’m not sure where the “burden of proof” here lies. We both made positive claims. You claimed that it is the law. You merely cited some law on the books without citing case law that it would actually be upheld. You didn’t cite any case law, and neither did I. It seems exceedingly difficult to start looking for case law on this, and I’m not sure where to start (see above).

    PS: Again, could you provide a specific instance, with quote, and explain why you think I’m lying?

    As I mentioned to Raging Bee, I am unaware of any dishonesty on my part. If you wish to cite specific examples, we can talk about them.

    Funny how you’re only willing to make that promise to zmidponk, while refusing to talk to me about the lies I explicitly cited.

    I’ll talk about it. I have been talking about it. I said I’m honestly confused, and I wonder if you are a native English speaker. I’ll copy-paste:

    EL: Your jurisprudence also states that the right to be safe trumps other purported hypothetical constitutionally guaranteed rights…

    Raging Bee: Aaaand you’re back to lying about what I said. I only said that the right to be safe trumps the right to own and carry guns.

    EL: I do not understand your complaint here. Gun rights are a purported hypothetical constitutional right. You said the right to safety trumps gun rights. Thus, you say that the right to be safe trumps other purported hypothetical constitutionally guaranteed rights (such as gun rights).

    Do you speak English?

    That’s where you accused me of lying.

    I accused you of lying several times. Which do you want to talk about?

  349. EnlightenmentLiberal says

    @Raging bee

    This is both factually and logically false. If I say something about ONE right, it does not automatically follow that I believe the same thing of other rights, nor does it mean anyone is expected to believe it of other rights.

    Let’s look at what I said, shall we?

    Your jurisprudence also states that the right to be safe trumps other purported hypothetical constitutionally guaranteed rights…

    So, would you be fine if removed “other”? Ex: Your jurisprudence also states that the right to be safe trumps other at least one other purported hypothetical constitutionally guaranteed rights. That’s ok?

    That’s pretty pedantic. I think you’re being unreasonable. I do see what you’re getting at though, but I think that I’m well within honestly portraying your position. You think safety trumps some other rights. I didn’t list out which rights. I didn’t say all rights. I just said “(some) other rights”. That’s grammatically correct. I didn’t say on what basis either – I just said that it trumps some other rights. You didn’t like the implication that it was left open with a clear basis on how to distinguish which rights are trumped and which are not. I’m sorry I couldn’t include that, because thus far you haven’t even pretended to attempt to give that.

    I ask again – if you are serious about explaining your position to help me not misportray it, answer my questions about the fourth and the NSA / CIA email snooping program so that I might understand your position more clearly.

  350. zmidponk says

    EnlightenmentLiberal:

    I guess I’ll claim stupidity, because you’ve lost me.

    I agree that there is a difference between restricting rights and eliminating rights. I’ve been advocating throughout the entire thread that we should restrict gun rights, but it’s still gun rights. Recently, I’ve also been stating that driving is a right, even though it’s also restricted. Again, I don’t know why you think I’m making that false conflation. I’m not. Why do you think I’m doing that? I’d really like to clear up any confusion.

    Well, the confusion appears to come from the fact that, even though I have repeatedly pointed out your twisting of it, you seem to have suddenly forgotten that, according to you, this is how what I’ve said applies to the Fourth Amendment:

    I trust the police. I’m a good guy. Why should I object to the police being able to search my email, listen in on my phone calls, etc.? If I restrict the police from doing that, I’m harming my own safety. If you disagree with me, all I can say is tell that to poor parents who lost their children to violence, and the criminals got off because the police didn’t have probable cause to do a search to get the evidence to convict the people responsible.

    So, just in case your faulty memory is acting up again, I’ll point out that this is your twisted and inaccurate version of my beliefs and positions which compares restricting gun rights for the safety of the general public against the direct risk of someone simply pulling out the gun they’re carrying and using it, and completely eliminating the right of not being monitored and/or searched without due cause by the entirely trustworthy and corruption-free police to safeguard against the possibility that, in particular circumstances, this right might allow a criminal to get away with a crime, which might, in turn, mean they are not safely behind bars instead of potentially causing a danger to the public.

    As for the other matter, all I’ll say is that’s a very impressively wordy way of continuing to try to get me to prove your arguments.

  351. EnlightenmentLiberal says

    @zmidponk
    I’m going to reread the thread to make sure I’m not mixing you up with anyone else. Done.

    First, are we having a discussion about whether individual gun rights are a good idea? Or are we having a conversation about whether the constitution plus amendments guarantees an individual right to a gun and to bring it most places? (Again, a right can be licensed. That’s not contradictory.) I just want to make sure we’re on the same page here. I checked, and it seems we’re not having a conversation whether the current law guarantees gun rights (which it does). Instead, we’re having a conversation about whether the second amendment is a good idea – right?

    You have desired goals “the constitution does not guarantee individual gun rights” and “the constitution forbids the NSA / CIA email snooping program” – right?

    All you did in post 374 was to rephrase and repeat these conclusions. I don’t see any reasoning or justification behind them from more basic moral values. That’s what I’m interested in. That’s where I’m saying you apparently have a contradiction.

    Thus far, you have just restated these two conclusions without stating the reasoning that gets you to these conclusions. I want to know what the reasoning is. As best as I can tell, it’s a simple matter of trusting the government sufficiently, plus favoring safety over freedom. Again, I want to know how you have come to the conclusion that the NSA / CIA email snooping program and similar programs are bad, but individual gun rights are bad. Again, it seems to me that the only way you can come to the conclusion that the NSA / CIA spying programs are bad is if you fear government police power, and again if you grant that it makes arguing for individual gun rights so much easier. Not a forgone conclusion, but easier.

    PS: Benjamin Franklin: “Those who would give up essential Liberty, to purchase a little temporary Safety, deserve neither Liberty nor Safety.”

    As for the other matter, all I’ll say is that’s a very impressively wordy way of continuing to try to get me to prove your arguments.

    Uhh, I’m pretty sure neither of us has demonstrated their case regarding the unconstitutional law defining harassment. You haven’t cited case law, and I haven’t cited case law. I’m merely stating that my background knowledge of law is such that if you want to convince me, you’re going to need to cite some real case law. Otherwise what can be asserted without evidence can also be dismissed without evidence. You’re welcome to do the same to my arguments. However, I pity you that you think I could actually be charged under that law (lol), and I hope you don’t make some mistakes in the real world under the expectation that thsi particular law is worth the paper it’s not printed on.

  352. says

    I accused you of lying several times.

    And you never backed it up once.

    I ask again – if you are serious about explaining your position to help me not misportray it, answer my questions about the fourth and the NSA / CIA email snooping program so that I might understand your position more clearly.

    You started by calling me “childish,” then you resorted to condescending lectures, then you started blatantly misrepresenting practically everything I said — except for the parts you totally ignored, of course — and when I pointed out your lies, you ignored it and kept on lying, then denied being dishonest, while repeating the same lies and lying about them too. Not misstating them, not misinterpreting them, LYING about them. Then you tried to pull that same old game of “if you don’t believe my bullshit, that means you’re a bad skeptic” that every lying denialist plays. None of those actions are the actions of someone who is trying to understand anything. Your questions are just another bad-faith diversion, and you have proven, by your own actions, that there is no point in trying to answer them — you’d probably only misrepresent every word I said, just like you’ve done up to now.

    You’ve had PLENTY of time to state your position, and engage my arguments, honestly and directly, and you ducked and dodged and did everything but. You’ve flushed what little credibility you had down the toilet, and now I’m done with you. Fuck off to bed and find someone else to lie to.

  353. zmidponk says

    EnlightenmentLiberal:

    @zmidponk
    I’m going to reread the thread to make sure I’m not mixing you up with anyone else. Done.

    First, are we having a discussion about whether individual gun rights are a good idea? Or are we having a conversation about whether the constitution plus amendments guarantees an individual right to a gun and to bring it most places? (Again, a right can be licensed. That’s not contradictory.) I just want to make sure we’re on the same page here. I checked, and it seems we’re not having a conversation whether the current law guarantees gun rights (which it does). Instead, we’re having a conversation about whether the second amendment is a good idea – right?

    Well, my point is simply that there might very well be a good reason for the gun rights which are given by the Second Amendment to be restricted (not eliminated, but restricted) in the interests of public safety, given that a gun, by its very nature, gives rise to the risk of someone getting shot, through deliberate act or accident. In opposition to this, your view seems to be that the Second Amendment, being unmodifiable, unreinterpretable (if that’s even a word) and unrestrictable, means that no-one can anyone deny someone the right to own and carry a gun where and when they choose beyond a licensing scheme.

    However, this is actually not the discussion we were actually having – the discussion we were actually having is about how you wildly twisted and misrepresented my beliefs and views to try to argue, using somewhat bizarre logic, that they led to the conclusion that the Fourth Amendment is a bad idea. And, somehow, you simply cannot grasp this, despite me stating it, several times, quite explicitly.

    You have desired goals “the constitution does not guarantee individual gun rights” and “the constitution forbids the NSA / CIA email snooping program” – right?

    All you did in post 374 was to rephrase and repeat these conclusions. I don’t see any reasoning or justification behind them from more basic moral values. That’s what I’m interested in. That’s where I’m saying you apparently have a contradiction.

    Thus far, you have just restated these two conclusions without stating the reasoning that gets you to these conclusions. I want to know what the reasoning is. As best as I can tell, it’s a simple matter of trusting the government sufficiently, plus favoring safety over freedom. Again, I want to know how you have come to the conclusion that the NSA / CIA email snooping program and similar programs are bad, but individual gun rights are bad. Again, it seems to me that the only way you can come to the conclusion that the NSA / CIA spying programs are bad is if you fear government police power, and again if you grant that it makes arguing for individual gun rights so much easier. Not a forgone conclusion, but easier.

    PS: Benjamin Franklin: “Those who would give up essential Liberty, to purchase a little temporary Safety, deserve neither Liberty nor Safety.”

    Again, I will state that it is only the case that you claim this contradiction exists in your inaccurate and twisted version of my views – as I have stated several times now, the last time in the very post #374 you are referring to. The fact that this is seemingly a point that you simply cannot grasp at all makes me wonder if your confusion stems from you simply not understanding English very well.

    Oh, and, of your ‘two desired goals’ that you claim are mine, one happens to be correct, but it was not me who raised it first – it first appeared, in an implied form, in the post where you originally mangled my beliefs and views virtually beyond all recognition. I’ll leave you to work out which one is right and which one is wrong. If you can sufficiently understand English to grasp what I’ve said in this very post, it should be pretty easy.

    Uhh, I’m pretty sure neither of us has demonstrated their case regarding the unconstitutional law defining harassment. You haven’t cited case law, and I haven’t cited case law. I’m merely stating that my background knowledge of law is such that if you want to convince me, you’re going to need to cite some real case law. Otherwise what can be asserted without evidence can also be dismissed without evidence. You’re welcome to do the same to my arguments. However, I pity you that you think I could actually be charged under that law (lol), and I hope you don’t make some mistakes in the real world under the expectation that thsi particular law is worth the paper it’s not printed on.

    So you seem to think that, if a law is passed, and you, personally, think it’s unconstitutional, you can simply go ahead and break that law without even being charged. If you are ever in a position where you’re considering breaking such a law, I very strongly suggest you consult a lawyer before you do, or you might get a very nasty shock.

  354. says

    322 wastes of time by the team of Douchebag and Dipshit and, as yet, nothing that looks like genuine logic.

    “I don’t think Raging Bee or (lol) democommie are going to change their minds in the slightest, but who knows who else might slog through these 350 someodd comments. Your attempts to enlighten regarding the constitutional basis, especially, i think would be very helpful to our hypothetical audience. Kudos.”

    Only in your fucking dreams will you two asswipes be changing any minds on the issues of gunz or conlaw, at least at this blog. You two assclowns both make the same tired, debunked arguments that RWA fuckwads have been trying to peddle, unsuccessfully, at DftCW since Ed started the blog.

    Although the nascent romance between EL and Lancifurious died aborning, the one between the two of you just might be the real deal. I suggest that you get a room or at least go over to Robert Farago’s piece-of-shit blog to consort with the likemindless.

    Fuck off, trolls.

  355. sabrekgb says

    @democommie 378

    Fuck off, trolls.

    So much projection, lol.

    You are, by quite a margin, the most troll-y douchenozzle posting in this thread…but it’s always someone else you toss that at. And always pretty quick when they disagree with you. A hint: “troll” is not a synonym for “Someone I disagree with”

    Also: Eat a dick.

  356. EnlightenmentLiberal says

    @zmidponk

    Well, my point is simply that there might very well be a good reason for the gun rights which are given by the Second Amendment to be restricted (not eliminated, but restricted) in the interests of public safety, given that a gun, by its very nature, gives rise to the risk of someone getting shot, through deliberate act or accident. In opposition to this, your view seems to be that the Second Amendment, being unmodifiable, unreinterpretable (if that’s even a word) and unrestrictable, means that no-one can anyone deny someone the right to own and carry a gun where and when they choose beyond a licensing scheme.

    Well, let’s start talking about other restrictions. I’m curious. I don’t think I addressed other restrictions in this thread.

    Let’s start with keeping a gun in the home. Surely that’s allowed. If not, then the right is basically completely gone.

    Open carry vs concealed carry? I don’t know enough, and I don’t know if I care one way or the other. Perhaps it makes sense to require a concealed carry permit for everyone, and only allow concealed carry.

    What other restrictions are you thinking about? I don’t know any other particularly meaningful ones, except a gun registry. One primary purpose of the second amendment is violent rebellion, and so I think the last thing that should be done is a gun registry.

    Assault weapon bans are bullshit, because there is no such thing as an assault weapon. It’s a fiction concocted by people who don’t know a thing about guns. An “assault weapon” is just a scary looking modern rifle. (Bayonet mounts my ass.) Also remember that IIRC “assault weapons” make up only 1% of gun deaths, and rifles in general make up 4%.

    If we’re going to be serious, magazine limits are a joke too. Less than 1% of gun deaths are mass shootings. Remember that half of mass shootings in the US happen with only hand guns. It’s a fact that most of those mass shootings would have happened exactly the same if the shooter was limited to 2 handguns with 12x 10-round detachable box magazines.

    What else?

    I’ve heard that they might be able to mark all ammo so that forensics can later determine where the ammo came from. Combined with an ammo registry, and this might be able to catch all shooters. I am hesitant for this for the exact same reason I would think a gun registry would be a bad idea.

    However, this is actually not the discussion we were actually having – the discussion we were actually having is about how you wildly twisted and misrepresented my beliefs and views to try to argue, using somewhat bizarre logic, that they led to the conclusion that the Fourth Amendment is a bad idea. And, somehow, you simply cannot grasp this, despite me stating it, several times, quite explicitly.

    You’ve stated it doesn’t. You haven’t explained how. I don’t see how. It seems quite contradictory to me. I’m asking for you to explain how. Please explain how.

    So you seem to think that, if a law is passed, and you, personally, think it’s unconstitutional, you can simply go ahead and break that law without even being charged. If you are ever in a position where you’re considering breaking such a law, I very strongly suggest you consult a lawyer before you do, or you might get a very nasty shock.

    Story time!

    While at the airport in the US, international flight even, I was taken aside for secondary screening by a random process. At secondary screening, they were swabbing people’s hands and running it through some sort of chemical analyzer. I was quiet, got my hands swabbed, and then told the guys “fuck you for enforcing this unconstitutional law”. I was told to wait to the side.

    20 minutes later, some asshat manager comes by, and asks why I didn’t cooperate with the TSA agents. I replied that I did comply, and that my hands have been swabbed. He goes to confer with the TSA agents. I overhear part of the conversation “he used ‘fuck’ “.

    He comes back, and says “You know it’s a crime to be abusive to a federal officer? We could call the police.” I was rather proud of my reply. Completely on the fly and not prepared at all. “What? I call your bluff. Call the police.”

    I was free to go about 5 minutes later.

    I know my free speech rights. You do not.

    PS: Of course I could be charged, and it would be heavily inconvenient. However, I am sure I would win on appeal. I am sure that it would be a long and arduous problem, very expensive.

    If I could be charged under that law you cited and get it off the books – or at least get clear case law that it’s bullshit – I would easily do that. Thankfully I’m well off financially and can afford to do so for everyone else.

    “Freedom is when the government is afraid of its people. Tyranny is when the people are afraid of their government.”

    PPS: Again, for example, rather recently several parts of Texas were arresting gay people simply for sodomy, despite SCOTUS even have overturned the law. The police can and will arrest you for whatever they damn well want. It’s quite infuriating that the case law of “sovereign immunity” or whatever that the police enjoy is so strict, that it’s damn near impossible to sue them for malfeasance. What the police can arrest you for is not a good measure of what’s illegal and what will actually land you prison / a fine / etc.

  357. EnlightenmentLiberal says

    I see no further reason to engage with Raging Bee on this issue. For example, I took issue when Raging Bee claimed infallibility on some topic, and said that is not the proper behavior of a skeptic. This is how Raging Bee saw it:

    Then you tried to pull that same old game of “if you don’t believe my bullshit, that means you’re a bad skeptic” that every lying denialist plays.

    Raging Bee has his head so far up his own ass that he distorted what I said to that in his head. I don’t even think this is productive for an audience now, so I’m probably done with him here.

  358. EnlightenmentLiberal says

    PS:

    While at the airport in the US, international flight even, I was taken aside for secondary screening by a random process. At secondary screening, they were swabbing people’s hands and running it through some sort of chemical analyzer. I was quiet, got my hands swabbed, and then told the guys “fuck you for enforcing this unconstitutional law”. I was told to wait to the side.

    20 minutes later, some asshat manager comes by, and asks why I didn’t cooperate with the TSA agents. I replied that I did comply, and that my hands have been swabbed. He goes to confer with the TSA agents. I overhear part of the conversation “he used ‘fuck’ “.

    He comes back, and says “You know it’s a crime to be abusive to a federal officer? We could call the police.” I was rather proud of my reply. Completely on the fly and not prepared at all. “What? I call your bluff. Call the police.”

    This is an example of civil disobedience and/or right to petition. I recognize that the law and case law is against my position. I admit that during my petition. I argue that the law should be changed. I am nowhere near foolish enough to think that I could actually win in court that the TSA in general are unconstitutional, even though IMHO clearly they should be according to fourth amendment principles.

    Roadside sobriety checkpoints piss me off for exactly the same reason, and I always give the police a piece of my mind when I go through, but I also recognize that SCOTUS has allowed it, and so I have to put up with it for the time being.

    This is unlike the quote above where I was practicing my free speech rights and petition rights, and I would clearly win in court against the “trumped up charge” of “being abusive to a federal officer”.

  359. zmidponk says

    EnlightenmentLiberal, if you cannot get a point that is clearly and explicitly stated several times, I’m done talking with you, as it seems clear your grasp of English is too poor, you’re too stupid or you’re too dishonest for doing so to be productive in any way. Or any combination of those.

  360. EnlightenmentLiberal says

    @zmidponk
    You agree with the fourth amendment but disagree with the second amendment. I get that. We both agree you’ve stated that clearly several times. You’ve even given a pithy one liner or two why you don’t like the second amendment. As I’ve stated numerous times, I want to know why. What’s so hard to understand about that? Also as I’ve stated numerous times, your views appear to rest on contradictory and irreconcilable unstated moral positions, and I’d like to learn more about your moral positions, in order to show the contradiction, or in order to understand how you can hold to the conclusions about the 2nd and 4th without contradiction.

    I fail to see how anything you said in post 384 is applicable or correct.

  361. says

    127 wastes of time, and counting.

    FWIW, I quit reading both of you fucktard’s comments a while back as every fucking thing you say is merely a rehash of already disproven/debunked bullshit that you’ve both been spewing since you showed up at this blog.

    Go fuck yourselves.

  362. sabrekgb says

    @127 democommie

    FWIW, I quit reading both of you fucktard’s comments a while back as every fucking thing you say is merely a rehash of already disproven/debunked bullshit that you’ve both been spewing since you showed up at this blog.

    Go fuck yourselves.

    Nope, you’re definitely not a troll. *wink*

    Also, how the hell did you manage to go that entire post without a single “Z”?

  363. EnlightenmentLiberal says

    @sabrekgb
    I’ve just written off Raging Bee like I’ve written off democommie. Neither are worth talking to IHMO. See:

    http://freethoughtblogs.com/dispatches/2014/07/10/how-liberals-can-reclaim-the-constitution/#comment-334567
    (and some earlier posts)

    http://freethoughtblogs.com/marginoferr/2014/07/10/culture-is-the-problem/#comment-27965
    (and some earlier posts)

    That means I probably won’t continue much longer in this thread. I still have some hope for zmidponk, although it seems he’s going to be willfully difficult and obtuse. I hope he can get better on that.

    sabrekgb, I still think you might be wrong (and I might be wrong), but it was fun talking to you.

  364. sabrekgb says

    @388 Enlightenment Liberal

    Indeed, it seems that there is a basic misunderstanding going on for Raging Bee (willful or not) in regards to consistency of application. She seems blind to it in this case because it’s being pointed out by someone she disagrees with…perhaps in future if someone she agrees with on an issue points it out, she might actually examine it.

    As for democommie…well, I think it’s telling that the first thing he does when responding to someone he disagrees with is to call them a troll. “Methinks he doth protest too much.” That and the ridiculous (-ly lame) hyperbole and odd misspelling fetish… Yeah, not such a serious conversationalist, more background noise :/

    It was fun talking with you in this thread as well, and i look forward to the next one. I could certainly be wrong, but i agree with you on the legal basis, and perhaps i might convince you sometime on the practical basis. In any case, i am hopefully a data point of a non-racist, socially “liberal”, reasonably intelligent gun carrier. For what it’s worth.

    Almost 400 comments…not bad :)

  365. says

    “Almost 400 comments…not bad :)”

    130/389 comments made by two clueless fucks. Yeah that’s about a third of the thread by comment count and considering that both of you tend to Gish Gallop like somebody stuck a jetpack up their asses, your bloviations are prolly about 50-60% of the thread by volume.

    a pair of fucking morons who somehow got the notion that “Dumb and Dumber” was a documentary about how to be successful in debate.

    Fuck off, trolls.

  366. sabrekgb says

    @390 democommie

    130/389 comments…prolly about 50-60% of the thread by volume.

    Are we supposed to feel bad for that for some reason? I’m not even checking your numbers, but is responding to other people somehow a bad thing? Turns out, if you’re one of the very few dissenting voices, you end up replying to more people than not. You keep counting (which, good for you, you learned numbers!) as if it’s a bad thing. Silly democommie.

    Gish Gallop, my ass…both I and EL tried to address responses (even though that’s a bad thing, because too many posts! Right…?) You’re not using that term correctly. Just like others.

    Also, we’re well off here from substantive discussion of the topic, but you were never actually interested in that. That means you’re the troll, silly. Don’t worry, though, there will be other threads for you to troll in the future. This one, i think, is about done though.

    Get a good helping of your Troll-y O’s this morning, democommie, and don’t forget to eat a dick as part of your balanced breakfast.

  367. says

    “Gish Gallop, my ass…both I and EL tried to address responses (even though that’s a bad thing, because too many posts! Right…?) You’re not using that term correctly. Just like others.”

    Actually, darling, trolls are pretty generally people who are hit’n’runners or those who only comment on one type of thread. I know, you’ve proven you’re not a troll by commenting on, what, four or five threads out of maybe a hundred since you first started trolling? Yeah, that’s convincing everyone that your trolling isn’t trolling. BTW, your hooking up with the pseudointellectual Ectopic Lesion pretty much confirms that you are an idiot and a douchebag–just like him.

    But here’s the real deal, deadey dickless; only a couple of the regular commenters even bother to address either of you fuckwads after the point where they see that you’re trolling. The few that do only do so to see how fucking stupid you really are.

    Go to Starbucks and be a man while you sip your latte with your 1911 or Sig Sauer or whatever manly prosthesis you’re accessorizing with today.

    Fuck off, troll.

    Fuck off troll.

  368. sabrekgb says

    I think you may have “trolling” confused with “disagreeing with me and being willing to actually discuss it”. Don’t worry, it’s a common mistake. Well, not amongst people interested in honest debate, but still…

    Fuck off, troll.

    -Fuck off troll.

    Cool story, Bro.

  369. says

    “I think you may have “trolling” confused with “disagreeing with me and being willing to actually discuss it”. Don’t worry, it’s a common mistake. Well, not amongst people interested in honest debate, but still…”

    From a guy who unreservedly says he’s better trained in the use of a gun in public than cops and yet has no fucking evidence to support it.

    Go fuck yourself, asshole.

    Why is it you stayed off the most recent post about fuckheadz wit teh gunz?

    Something that really speaks to the gunzloonery is the fact that you guyz have nothing to say about the hundreds of stupidents that happen every week or the many instances of idiots wit teh gunz killing themselves or innocent bystanders, cuz freedumb.

    You’re full of shit, you’re a liar and you’re too fucking cowardly to leave your house without a gun. How fucking sad your life must be.

    Fuck off, troll.

  370. sabrekgb says

    @394 democommie

    From a guy who unreservedly says he’s better trained in the use of a gun in public than cops

    That is not what i said. I reservedly said that i am better than the minimums required of cops. I said that i am better than some, but regardless of my levels of proficiency that i am “good enough”. You are lying when you say i said this, but you call me a liar. It’s really easy…all our text is posted above, anyone (even you) can go up and see.

    fuckheadz…wit…teh…gunz…gunzloonery…guyz…stupidents…cuz…freedumb

    I submit that your inability to type words without twitching a “Z” in there and just not being able to spell when you type about this subject is evidence of you being a little deranged. I don’t think it’s a harmful sort of derangement, but i do wish you