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We’re bullying the manly studs with guns?

r41813nra

Yesterday, I could start the day with the happy news that New Zealand had passed progressive legislation, and then burst into song. Today I have to look at my home country, and…goddamn, but we’re a dysfunctional mess. America is basically a rogue state, run by plutocrats and incompetents.

After Aurora and Newtown, there was a surge of sentiment in favor of checking the extravagant dissemination of deadly weapons in this country. It’s just a little too easy for hateful lunatics and demented haters to get their hands on weapons of mass murder, and so people proposed taking baby steps and moderating America’s addiction to guns just a little bit. So a bipartisan bill made it to the senate that would have made small changes: it would have required more background checks for gun buyers, and it would have banned assault weapons and high capacity clips. These are not terribly restrictive rules. Who could possibly want felons or people with violent mental illnesses to be able to buy guns casually? Who needs a 60-shot magazine for an assault rifle?

The bill was defeated in the Senate. No word if the attending senators rose up and were led in a rousing chorus of Wango Tango by Ted Nugent afterwards.

Take a look at the roll call for the vote. It was almost perfectly split with the Republicans voting against it (Harry Reid joined them!) and the Democrats voting for it (with John McCain!). It was a simple, common-sense bill and the Republicans united to vote it down. I think it’s way past time that we voted every damn Republican down.

Gabby Giffords agrees. In her editorial on the vote, she says,

Mark my words: if we cannot make our communities safer with the Congress we have now, we will use every means available to make sure we have a different Congress, one that puts communities’ interests ahead of the gun lobby’s. To do nothing while others are in danger is not the American way.

She’s wrong about one thing: to let neglect and crime rule is the American way. We have to change it. It’s going to take more than just elections and laws, though, we’re going to have to change American culture. Because it’s ripe with assholes.

For example, one prominent right-wing, pro-gun voice is Instapundit. You might want to savor his response to Giffords.

insta-ass

Stunning, ain’t it?

He’s telling a woman who was shot in the head and saw friends gunned down to stop bullying the gun lobby. We’ve got people who want to be able to make impulse purchases of weapons designed with one purpose — killing people — and Instahack calls the victim of one of their assaults a bully because she’s trying to promote sensible gun laws.

You can’t deny it. His is one of the voices of America.

But it’s long past time for the rest of us to tell the gun-obsessed macho boy-children to fucking grow up.


Please read Brian Leiter’s very polite gutting of Instapundit. It’s a thing of beauty.

Comments

  1. says

    Reid changed his vote from a “yes” to a “no” for procedural reasons so that he can potentially bring it up again on a motion for reconsideration.

  2. Wowbagger, Designated Snarker says

    What the fuck else needs to happen in your country before even the bought-and-paid-for-by-the-NRA politicians can’t brush it aside anymore? Unbelievable.

  3. says

    I once wrote an essay about what happened when a car backfired (do they still do that?) outside an open window at the NRA annual conference…imagination is sometimes so much better than reality.

    [sigh]

  4. indicus says

    Yay, one more useless regulatory burden to make gun owner’s live miserable with absolutely no effect on crime or lunatics has been shot down (no pun intended)! Happy dance! ^_^ Oh, and as far as the assault weapons ban being “common sense”, nothing which would completely restrict the possession of something legally owned and enjoyed by tens of millions comes close to being “common sense”. Oh, and as far as it being bi-partisan, the AWN died 40-60… with FIFTEEN DEMOCRATS voting against it (including a potential future Presidential nominee). It definitely was bi-partisan… in opposition to it.

  5. stinger says

    I believe that Reid voted against it because under Senate rules that gives him the right to re-introduce the bill later. He will do this from time to time when it becomes clear an important bill isn’t going to pass on this go-round.

  6. stinger says

    aaronpound types faster than I do and probably got the details more accurately as well.

  7. thumper1990 says

    Indicus is still an idiot, I see.

    Pray tell, Indicus, how would you go about diminishing gun crime in the US?

  8. says

    Exactly right concerning Reid. Only a “no” vote can ask for reconsideration. Reid votes “no” at the last minute on any measure he thinks he’ll want to bring back for reconsideration. It’s strictly a procedural move and a political one, although it can be confusing to outside observers.

  9. Pyra says

    Wait, he said what to someone who barely survived being shot? My head just exploded.

  10. Wowbagger, Designated Snarker says

    thumper1990 wrote:

    Pray tell, Indicus, how would you go about diminishing gun crime in the US?

    Why, with more guns of course! Guns for everyone!

  11. thumper1990 says

    @Wowbagger

    Yeah, I suspect his answer is going to be something along those lines, somehow said with a perfectly straight face, but I figured I’d do him the courtesy of hearing his answer.

  12. dianne says

    If guns make you so much safer, how come the NRA prohibits visitors from bringing guns into their headquarters? One would think that they would encourage, nay require guns be brought in and provide free guns at the door for anyone who forgot theirs today. An armed society is a polite society! And surely they want everyone to be armed so that they can heroically shoot the criminal that they think is lurking around every corner (and is NEVER one of their members). Yet instead they prohibit visitors from bringing guns into their headquarters. It’s almost as though they don’t believe their own propaganda or something.

  13. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Indicus, thank you for showing us you are a bullying unmanly stud….What an abject idiotlogical loser you are.

  14. dianne says

    And one must realize that NRA members and others who clutch their guns closely are inadequate people who are easily insulted because they know that they are inherently worthless so perhaps Instapundit did truly feel insulted.

  15. Larry says

    So the vote was 55-45 (counting Reid’s “true” vote as a yes) and that counts as a defeat? I’m tired of these pretend filibusters that say practically every bill needs 60 votes in the Senate.

    Admittedly the bill would have never passed the House, but it’s still frustrating seeing so many majority votes in the Senate beaten by filibusters.

  16. anteprepro says

    Yay, one more useless regulatory burden to make gun owner’s live miserable with absolutely no effect on crime or lunatics has been shot down (no pun intended)!

    A gun fetishist who thinks that Criminals are a class of diabolical folks who break every law, all the time, and are thus immune to laws that affect Normal People, because Criminals are way too sinister to be affected. Such a fucking rare mindset.

    Oh, and as far as the assault weapons ban being “common sense”, nothing which would completely restrict the possession of something legally owned and enjoyed by tens of millions comes close to being “common sense”.

    Aww, poor baby, somebody’s trying to take away his completely harmless toys! Cue somebody else saying that they need them for defense, and somebody else saying that nobody uses assault weapons anyway. Because that’s what always fucking happens because you idiots throw every tired, thoughtless cliche against the wall and see what sticks.

    Why, with more guns of course! Guns for everyone!

    WRONG! Guns only for the Good Guys. With Good Guys being defined entirely as whoever the gun lobby likes.

  17. Tapetum, Raddled Harridan says

    In the last 48 hours I’ve engaged in two separate Facebook arguments with people who were arguing that it was completely unreasonable to ask gun buyers to bring so much ID and go through paperwork to buy a gun because “It’s our constitutional right!” – while simultaneously arguing that it’s entirely reasonable to require as much or more ID and red tape to be allowed to vote, which is also our constitutional right. So far no one has answered me when I asked how many people had been killed by mistakenly issued ballots.

  18. benco says

    Are there any cases in which a situation was improved by a civilian owned assault weapon?
    Any at all? I would think that the NRA would be crowing it from the rooftops if it happened even once.

  19. indicus says

    @ thumper1990, Depends on what sort of ‘gun crime’ you are talking about. How to stop the nutjobs who keep slipping through the background check cracks? Tighten up the sieve that is the federal dealer background check system… you know, the licensed dealers? You know, the only legal avenue from which any significant number of firearms used in crimes come from? Because in case none of you can read a newspaper, NONE of the weapons used in shootings like Newtown, Aurora, etc, etc are being purchased by prohibited individuals from gun shows. Pressuring the media into not running the ramblings and complete life stories of this clowns would help too. And as for individuals who store their firearms in a lazy manner and wind up having them stolen and used in a crime, throw THEIR asses in jail too. As for your run-of-the-mill ‘gun crime’ (muggings, convenience store robberies, etc.), then yes, a great answer would be more people carrying guns.

  20. Doug Little says

    Yay, one more useless regulatory burden to make gun owner’s live miserable with absolutely no effect on crime or lunatics has been shot down

    Last time I checked countries that have stricter gun control laws consequently have less crimes being committed with guns, but don’t let the facts get it the way of your wankery. How often do “gun owners” purchase firearms that some extra regulations would be a burden on them and make their lives miserable? You make it sound like people are buying a gun a week or something to be so put out by stricter regulations. How many guns do you fucking need?

  21. dianne says

    Indicus, so you’re saying that in the best case scenario guns can be useful once every 21 years or so? That seems like a pretty poor return for the risk of being shot the other 20 years out of those 21, especially given that the Rodney King riots would likely have been much less deadly if no one had had guns.

  22. stinger says

    Really? The inability to buy a 60-shot magazine makes a gun owner’s life MISERABLE? What a small, sad, ammunition-centric, pitiable life you must already lead.

  23. dianne says

    How often do “gun owners” purchase firearms that some extra regulations would be a burden on them and make their lives miserable?

    Because they’re too brainless to be able to fill out the forms correctly and too evil to be able to find fun in anything other than threatening and killing.

  24. AtheistPowerlifter says

    Hey PZ…there’s lots of room up here in Canada!

    And we could use another big anti-creationism voice up here…we don’t have loads of cephalopods, but LOTS of maple bacon and donuts.

    Just sayin’.

    AP

  25. anteprepro says

    Because in case none of you can read a newspaper, NONE of the weapons used in shootings like Newtown, Aurora, etc, etc are being purchased by prohibited individuals from gun shows.

    Yes, because two cases in which gun show guns weren’t used means that gun show guns are harmless. GUN LOGIC.

    Pressuring the media into not running the ramblings and complete life stories of this clowns would help too.

    [Citation needed]

    “They just did it for the attention” is a nice, common sensical, folk wisdom-y explanation for why anybody does anything. That doesn’t make it accurate.

    And as for individuals who store their firearms in a lazy manner and wind up having them stolen and used in a crime, throw THEIR asses in jail too.

    Jail sentences for not storing a gun properly? You know that if we dared to say that, you and your kin would bite our fucking heads off, right?

    As for your run-of-the-mill ‘gun crime’ (muggings, convenience store robberies, etc.), then yes, a great answer would be more people carrying guns.

    That’s the answer? Was the question “how to turn thefts into murders”?

  26. says

    indicus:

    As for your run-of-the-mill ‘gun crime’ (muggings, convenience store robberies, etc.), then yes, a great answer would be more people carrying guns.

    That’s funny. Most research indicates owning a gun dramatically increases your chances of death by gunfire.

  27. Doug Little says

    but LOTS of maple bacon and donuts.

    Maple bacon donuts from Voodoo Donuts, mmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm

  28. Yellow Thursday says

    Indicus @20

    Tighten up the sieve that is the federal dealer background check system… you know, the licensed dealers?

    Does that mean your in favor of firearms regulation that improves background checks for purchasers, which was included in the proposed law this post talks about?

  29. Doug Little says

    As for your run-of-the-mill ‘gun crime’ (muggings, convenience store robberies, etc.), then yes, a great answer would be more people carrying guns

    You do know that action movies are a poor representation of reality right?

  30. shouldbeworking says

    “Government of the people, by the NRA, for the mega corporations.” I’m so glad my grandparents emigrated.

  31. chigau (違う) says

    “tens of millions” of “assault weapons” in the hands of Americans?
    There’s a thought to lighten your sleep at night.

  32. jimnorth says

    I am of the opinion that the sane side of this debate, tougher regulations, will never win because we don’t have an argument that preserves constitutional rights (real or imaginary). Our arguments tend to be on the societal level, the gunz lobby tends to be personal (and very emotional). Individual rights will trump community sanity every time.

    Have any of our lawmakers considered the transfer of gun ownership legally reportable – sort of like when we sell automobiles?

  33. anteprepro says

    I am of the opinion that the sane side of this debate, tougher regulations, will never win because we don’t have an argument that preserves constitutional rights (real or imaginary). Our arguments tend to be on the societal level, the gunz lobby tends to be personal (and very emotional). Individual rights will trump community sanity every time.

    Well, first off, there’s this:

    The most recent surveys included a CNN/ORC International poll released last week that indicated 86% of the public supported some form of background checks that are not currently required by law for gun sales, and an ABC News/Washington Post survey released Tuesday which indicated that 86% of Americans said they favored background checks for gun sales on the internet and at gun shows.

    The two new polls were also in-line with past surveys by indicating no partisan divide on the question, with the vast majority of Democrats, independents, and even Republicans supporting increased background checks. The ABC/Washington Post survey also indicated that 86% of gun owning households supported the proposal.

    But it all comes down to how you frame the debate. When you get down to specific proposals, a lot of people support gun control. When you get vague and broad , when you invoke the idea of Rights, when you ask them about the issue in terms that approach the typical political debate and talking points, the divide suddenly becomes closer to 50-50.

    Basically, there is hope for public support if the issues are framed correctly. But the only real hope for the laws getting passed is if Democrats are filibuster proof. But that’s pretty much the case for every issue, honestly.

  34. Ing:Intellectual Terrorist "Starting Tonight, People will Whine" says

    Yeah nothing is less emotional than the Newton families and Giffords

    @18
    A lot of Iraqis wound up dead because of some mishandled ballots

  35. says

    anteprepro:

    But the only real hope for the laws getting passed is if Democrats are filibuster proof. But that’s pretty much the case for every issue, honestly.

    Yeah. The Republicans really don’t represent the majority of America any more. They have to gerrymander and suppress votes to maintain their current numbers. And lately their entire platform seems to be “oppose everything Teh Liberuls propose.”

    Their entire brand identity seems to be one of fear, anger, and opposition. And an almost fanatical devotion to ignoring evidence. (SEE indicus in this very thread for an example.)

  36. bargearse says

    nigelthebold@40

    Their entire brand identity seems to be one of fear, anger, and opposition. And an almost fanatical devotion to ignoring evidence.

    There’s no “almost” about it.

  37. Doug Little says

    I am of the opinion that the sane side of this debate, tougher regulations, will never win because we don’t have an argument that preserves constitutional rights (real or imaginary)

    I don’t understand how tougher regulation violates constitutional rights in this case, the supreme court has determined that the right is not unlimited.

  38. Tapetum, Raddled Harridan says

    Ing@39 – mishandled ballots, yes. Not because people were allowed to vote who shouldn’t have been. Rather more the reverse.

  39. anteprepro says

    Yeah. The Republicans really don’t represent the majority of America any more. They have to gerrymander and suppress votes to maintain their current numbers. And lately their entire platform seems to be “oppose everything Teh Liberuls propose.”

    True. For the longest time, I thought it was the other way around. I thought that liberals didn’t stand for anything, but just disagreed with everything Republicans stood for. Obviously, I had no problem with that. But I see now that Republicans have tried to dishonestly brand themselves as certain things that they clearly have no monopoly on (they are the True Christians, the True Patriots, the True Fiscal Conservatives) and they simply decide to impede liberals insofar as such impediment is consistent with one or more of the labels that they worked so hard to adhere to themselves. It is pretty damn clear to me now that liberals see the ways that society could improve and seek a way to improve it, while conservatives oppose them in order to maintain the status quo. And a lot of the support for Republicans, from people who would actually be hurt by such regressions, is simply because they buy into Republican branding (why would a True Christian vote for non-True Christians?) or because they are simply afraid of change (or they’re bigots). We’ve pretty much got to discredit the Republican brand before people even care about the gulf between Republican politicians and the people who support them.

  40. says

    Doug Little:

    I don’t understand how tougher regulation violates constitutional rights in this case, the supreme court has determined that the right is not unlimited.

    They don’t. Just as free speech is not unlimited (most notably by slander and libel laws), there’s no reason to assume there can be no restrictions on guns.

    We already have restrictions on guns, in fact. There’s a lot of paperwork required to procure grenades for grenade launchers, for instance. We’ve already drawn a line. There’s nothing unconstitutional about re-drawing the line.

    Hell, I’d consider repealing the 2nd Amendment, myself. Anyone who thinks gun ownership makes them safer is a damned fool who ignores both evidence and common sense.

  41. mikeyb says

    You mean the meekest turd of a bill, sponsored by Joe “blow up climate change” Manchin of all people, with the most watered down set of background check provisions is way to radical for the GOP (and the so called democrat from ND and Max “no public option” Baucus among others). And this was the most pissant weak of all of the bills. Don’t expect progress on virtually anything until the current GOP is thoroughly discredited, dismantled and utterly defeated politically. For example, I predict when all is said an done, like gun control, notafuckingthing will be done on immigration reform in the near future. With gerrymandering and a 46% creationist base to draw upon, that is tough to do.

    I also wonder why Obama was so infuriated, was he suffering from a momentary lapse of sanity from his usual we just need to be more bipartisan delusional mantra.

    I’m sure when the next massacre occurs we’ll hear the same lame excuses about violent video games, lack of God in schools and the need for teachers to carry concealed weapons.

  42. WharGarbl says

    @tsig
    #48

    Repeal the second amendment, it’s the only way.

    We already have trouble getting THIS passed! How in the world do you think we have ANY chance of repealing the second amendment?

  43. eamick says

    Only a “no” vote can ask for reconsideration.

    Almost. Only someone voting on the winning side can move to reconsider. When the yeas have it, a yes voter will routinely move to reconsider immediately after the vote, and another yes voter will move to table that motion, locking in the result.

  44. WharGarbl says

    @mikeyb
    #46
    As #1 and #5 pointed out, the reason Harry Reid voted against this is to have a procedural “workaround”. Namely, anyone one the “winning” side can file a motion to reconsider, which in a way let this bill be brought up again.
    So, Harry Reid, upon realizing that this bill won’t pass, vote with the winning side so he can bring it back up later.

  45. Ogvorbis, broken failure. says

    Didn’t the GOP used to scream bloody murder when the Democrats in the Senate filibustered a vote? Telling us that it was unconstitutional? that the filibuster was evil? But I guess blocking centrist legislation makes it okay.

  46. anteprepro says

    Didn’t the GOP used to scream bloody murder when the Democrats in the Senate filibustered a vote? Telling us that it was unconstitutional? that the filibuster was evil?

    This kind of shit happens so frequently, I’m sure IOKIYAR would be a plank in their official platform if they had the slightest amount of self-awareness and honesty.

  47. thumper1990 says

    @Indicus

    Sorry for taking so long, shit came up and I had to actually do some work *sigh*.

    Tighten up the sieve that is the federal dealer background check system

    So you want to check the dealers, but not the customers? Have I read that correctly?

    I agree with you on storage of firearms. Here in the UK you are required to have an approved gun safe and your firearm(s) must be stored, unloaded, in such a thing at all times (except obviously if you are using it or cleaning it), as must ammunition. Storing them anywhere that does not meet the requirements is a criminal offence. I personally think the US desperately needs similar legislation.

  48. Rey Fox says

    Yes, of course it’s bullying to be reminded of dead schoolchildren.

    From my brother’s Twitter yesterday: “Mormons love their guns. #lessonsfrommyFBfeed” Suddenly quite glad I moved away from my old high school.

    Reid and co. were supposed to fix the filibuster rules too. They didn’t.

    And then they all wonder why the approval ratings of Congress are always in the crapper.

  49. mikeyb says

    @54

    Unimportant clarification – I was referring to Heidi (ND – not democrat) Heitkamp, not Harry Reid.

  50. Ogvorbis, broken failure. says

    Tighten up the sieve that is the federal dealer background check system

    So you want to check the dealers, but not the customers? Have I read that correctly?

    That one is actually a pretty good idea, and the NRA is against it.

    Used to be that the ATF kept track of weapons used in crimes and what dealers sold the weapons. The gun manufacturers got worried that it exposed them to a potential lawsuit if the information was available that a dealer was very likely to sell guns that ended up in the hands of criminals and still sold arms to that dealer. So the Bush administration eliminated not only the reporting of the data, but even the collection of the data.

  51. thumper1990 says

    @Ogvorbis

    I didn’t mean to suggest that background checks for dealers was a bad idea; far from it, I think it’s a great idea. I’m simply confused that Indicus has ommitted customers from background checks. Surely they should both be bloody well checked?

    I am quite frankly amazed that the US has no registry of what gun belongs to who. Honestly, my mind is so fucking boggled, it’s like one of Caine’s ratties on mandy.

  52. mythbri says

    I’m so jaded by the inaction of legislators regarding gun violence that I’d be happy (for now, anyway) with allowing the CDC to conduct some research about gun violence. Who could be against making more informed policy?

    Oh, that’s right. The NRA and rabid gun advocates.

  53. anteprepro says

    I’m simply confused that Indicus has ommitted customers from background checks. Surely they should both be bloody well checked?

    Oh and indicus and his ilk. They will often suggest that Criminals with a Capital C are a distinct class of violent habitual law-breakers that are so common and dangerous that you need to be armed yourself to keep them at bay. But dare to do a background check, dare to try to find if one of the gun purchasers might be one of those Criminal Menaces? Nope, can’t do it. It stops people from getting guns quickly enough. It stops those good, law-abiding gun owners who like playing with AK-47′s from filling up their third gun closet, and thus makes them weep into their Cheerios over how the feds just ruined their Christmas. Oh, sure, the Criminals are a distinct class of chronic, murderous evil-doers who deserve to be shot if they try to steal some bread from your pantry, but you can’t actually try to find these Criminals, or else it will inconvenience the Good Guys!

    Indicus is the kind of person who would think that background checks would work PERFECTLY but still opposes it because it would be an inconvenience. In other words, indicus is sick, amoral fuck.

  54. thumper1990 says

    @Ogvorbis

    No no, you made pefect sense; I just wasn’t very clear :) my bad. And thanks for the info about Bush and his cronies actually removing something which is clearly common fucking sense. I didn’t know, but I am not suprised.

  55. David Marjanović says

    Exactly right concerning Reid. Only a “no” vote can ask for reconsideration. Reid votes “no” at the last minute on any measure he thinks he’ll want to bring back for reconsideration. It’s strictly a procedural move and a political one, although it can be confusing to outside observers.

    It also strikes me as a massively stupid procedure.

    the NRA prohibits visitors from bringing guns into their headquarters

    What

    the fuck.

    An armed society is a polite society!

    Iraq was such a polite society under Saddam, when every man who considered himself one had an AK-47 and plenty of ammo for it! *puke*

    How to stop the nutjobs who keep slipping through the background check cracks?

    Don’t make the perfect the enemy of the good here.

    As for your run-of-the-mill ‘gun crime’ (muggings, convenience store robberies, etc.), then yes, a great answer would be more people carrying guns.

    …because Normal People are always faster at the draw than Criminals. Always.

    Have you no shame?

  56. David Marjanović says

    I am quite frankly amazed that the US has no registry of what gun belongs to who.

    It only does for fully automatic weapons.

  57. anteprepro says

    Storing them anywhere that does not meet the requirements is a criminal offence. I personally think the US desperately needs similar legislation.

    I don’t see it happening. There are tooth and nail fights over the tiniest bits of regulating the purchase of these things. The battle over telling people who they are allowed to use them when they own them? The battle over that would be fucking epic. They already try to link gun control to fascism. Telling gun owners that they might get criminal offenses for how they store their own property in their own home would go over like a fucking lead balloon to the vast majority. I can imagine even most Democrats would think that it doesn’t respect super special snowflake American individualism quite enough.

  58. thumper1990 says

    @Antipopro

    I fail to understand why the US don’t instigate a license system. People need a license to own a gun; getting a license requires background checks and checks of your medical records to ascertain whether or not you present a significant danger to yourself or others. Make it illegal (with stiff punishments, such as steep fines and losing their dealers license) to sell a gun to anyone who does not show a gun license. Have different tiers of license for different classes of weapons. You can buy a gun on the spot simply by showing your license, and you’ve already been background-checked. Any criminal act (of a certain level if you want to be even looser) results in them losing their license and having their guns confiscated.

    Ta-da! Problem solved.

  59. WharGarbl says

    @David
    #67

    It also strikes me as a massively stupid procedure.
    Not exactly stupid. It’s a procedure that essentially says “If you lose the vote, you cannot ask for a do over.”
    It’s just that the procedure has a loophole that essentially says “If you won the vote, you can ask for a do over.”

  60. thumper1990 says

    @anteprepro (sorry for getting your ‘nym wrong previously)

    Yeah last time I suggested that some guy went fucking nuts because that would mean he couldn’t get to his gun in time to shoot an intruder.

    I think that’s a major difference in gun culture between the UK and the US: here guns are viewed generally as being for sports, in the US they are viewed as being for defence.

  61. WharGarbl says

    @thumper1990
    #70
    Three words.
    National Rifle Association
    Fuck! I would settle with this brain-dead simple license requirement.
    1. Pass background check
    2. Sign 1 document stating that you read and understood basic gun safety instruction (don’t even need to attend a class, or a test, just a statement that says you know gun safety).
    I will bet that the NRA would not support even something as easy as that!

  62. anteprepro says

    …because Normal People are always faster at the draw than Criminals. Always.

    Well, with the NRA interfering with actual scientific research on the topic, I suppose John Wayne films are as good of a source of evidence for their worldview as any other.

  63. Azkyroth Drinked the Grammar Too :) says

    Pray tell, Indicus, how would you go about diminishing gun crime in the US?

    Why would he diminish it? What would he masturbate to then?

    (Yes, troll, that is the level your shit arguments are on.)

  64. vaiyt says

    Some people who are in favor of everyone having guns seem to have the misconception that they’re an equalizer.

    The truth is, guns do favor certain people over others – the trigger-happy, the paranoid, the violent and the murderous. These are the people likely to draw, and shoot, first.

  65. anteprepro says

    I fail to understand why the US don’t instigate a license system.

    Politics. Or more specifically, Republicans. But I would absolutely love if we could get it. (Some states actually do have it already, though I have no idea how thorough any of them are).

    (Also: don’t worry about the ‘nym. I have no particular attachment to it as long as I know someone is talking to me)

    Yeah last time I suggested that some guy went fucking nuts because that would mean he couldn’t get to his gun in time to shoot an intruder.

    I think that’s a major difference in gun culture between the UK and the US: here guns are viewed generally as being for sports, in the US they are viewed as being for defence.

    That’s about right. In the U.S., guns are viewed as being for intimidation, being for entertainment, being for status, and for being for “defense” if you are a lucky cowboy. The gun fetishists will argue for any one of the above uses, and neglect the other uses, whenever it is convenient. Much like religionists who will pretend that religion is just a nice little social club when you are attacking the claim that it is a route to profound cosmic truth. The weird thing about the storage requirements is that even though it isn’t a legal thing, gun safety rules insist on storing guns that same way. And most gun fetishists insist that they are a good, sensible, safe gun owners and wave away the incidents of accidental gun injuries and fatalities as the acts of a few reckless idiots. Yet it still is ridiculously common to hear these same people telling us how they don’t actually abide by safe gun storage. I mean, fuck.

  66. says

    @67 David Marjanović

    “It also strikes me as a massively stupid procedure.”

    The Senate strikes me as a massively stupid procedure. All this dysfunction to honor imaginary lines on a map.

  67. w00dview says

    Whenever some jackass squeaks that a tragedy would have been averted if everyone had a gun, what I really hear is them fantasising how they would have totally pwned that bad guy with their awesome shooting skillz and dodged his bullets like Neo from the matrix and then they would have been declared a big hero and everyone would throw a big parade for them. The NRA is full of delusional man children who think they are all Clint fucking Eastwood. And it is these adolescent morons who are preventing the US from implementing sane gun laws. They don’t want the gubmint threatening their freedom to be a total bad ass who saves the day. PZ is correct, grow the fuck up gun nuts. Reality is not like the movies, the good guys don’t always win.

  68. Xaivius (Formerly Robpowell, Acolyte of His Majesty Lord Niel DeGrasse Tyson I) says

    Gleh. Firmly believe that if a body of lawmakers wants to get some meaningful legislation passed, they’re going to need to split the bill into constituent motions. Yes, this means the AWB will probably fail, but you’d be able to remove that boondoggle from the rest of the motions, and hopefully get a few through the legislature (Taking a “shotgun” approach to the situation as it were).

    License stuffs
    –thumper1990 @70

    Y’see, I can totally get behind this. Problem is that the National Manchild Association would lose their fucking minds. Only way I could see them budging would be concessions against the ’84 NFA, but that might not even help, what with old legal full auto weapons going for 10-50k on the collectors market.
    On the license, though, buying a gun would be far easier for the “good ones:” Go to FFL, pick gun. Show license. FFL types license number into database, gets a go/no-go, pay for gun. No license, no gun. No-go from system, no gun. Less liability for the FFLs and Firearms manufacturers, and the vast majority of gun owners get a card that says they’re “one of the good ones.” I really don’t see the downside here.

  69. anteprepro says

    The NRA is full of delusional man children who think they are all Clint fucking Eastwood.

    You can forgive them for making that mistake. Usually, their chair-debating abilities are really an exact match.

  70. thumper1990 says

    @anteprepro

    In short, they’re viewed as toys for badasses. That right there is the problem. Unfortunately, I think sensible gun laws will have to wait until that culture is changed. I am worried about how many more tragedies will have to occurr before that change happens.

    I too am endlessly confused by people who insist they are good sensible gun owners who follow all the gun safety rules… but in the next breath say they don’t want those rules made law because FREEDOM!!!11! If they are worried about those rules being law then they are clearly not following them, the liars.

    @w00dview

    Agreed.

  71. thumper1990 says

    @Xaivius

    I really don’t see the downside here.

    Me neither. It’s not even that I disagree with people who don’t want licensing, it’s gone way beyond that… I genuinely do not understand them.

  72. peanutcat says

    “I once wrote an essay about what happened when a car backfired (do they still do that?) outside an open window at the NRA annual conference…imagination is sometimes so much better than reality.”

    Better yet, imagine their reaction at seeing a group of black males openly carrying assault weapons!:D

  73. anteprepro says

    It’s not even that I disagree with people who don’t want licensing, it’s gone way beyond that… I genuinely do not understand them.

    I bet it is because you make the mistake of thinking they actually have a thought process involved in their positions, rather than their position on the subject simply being the product of an interconnected series of kneejerks. It is hard to disagree with someone whose position is entirely emotional post-hoc rationalizations.

  74. anteprepro says

    Better yet, imagine their reaction at seeing a group of black males openly carrying assault weapons!:D

    Wasn’t there a brief discussion here about how the NRA actually did at one point support gun control re: The Black Panthers?

  75. screechymonkey says

    Rey Fox@59:

    Yes, of course it’s bullying to be reminded of dead schoolchildren.

    But when it comes to victims of terrorist attacks — or anything that might possibly prove to be a terrorist attack — it’s totally ok to demand wars or drastic policy changes “in their memory.”

  76. thumper1990 says

    @anteprepro

    No, I get that. I say “Licensing”, they yell “Fascism!!11!!”, I say “Huh?” then they have to try and explain why it’s a bad idea. That’s why none of their arguments make any fucking sense.

    The Black Panther thing doesn’t suprise me. the only good gun owner is a White, Republican, ‘MERKIN’!! gun owner.

  77. mikeyb says

    What pisses me off the most is the lack of candor. I’d have more respect if these senators would just admit that they are wholly owned subsidiaries of the gun lobby, and/or they’re scared to death that redneck assholes will run them out of office if they vote for background checks. I’d still hate them, but at least they would be honest for a change.

  78. David Marjanović says

    Some people who are in favor of everyone having guns seem to have the misconception that they’re an equalizer.

    “Colonel Colt makes everybody equal”?

    The Senate strikes me as a massively stupid procedure. All this dysfunction to honor imaginary lines on a map.

    Good point.

    The NRA is full of delusional man children who think they are all Clint fucking Eastwood.

    Not even. There’s that spaghetti western where the bad guy (Lee van Cleef) shoots faster and aims better than everybody else. Good guy (Eastwood) shows up, wearing a poncho, and slowly walks toward bad guy. Bad guy has enough and shoots. Nothing happens, good guy keeps walking. Bad guy things “wtf” and shoots five more times. Still nothing happens. Good guy throws poncho over shoulder, exposing an enormous steel plate hanging from his neck and covering his whole front side. It has six impact craters, all very close together, all right above the heart. Bad guy is out of bullets, good guy is unharmed…

    The NRA is full of delusional man-children who think they are all John fucking Wayne. They haven’t watched spaghetti westerns. They should have.

    Sunzi: “First win, then go to battle.”

  79. Doug Little says

    Unfortunately, I think sensible gun laws will have to wait until that culture is changed.

    No so. In Australia the drinking culture was changed by making binge drinking and DUI infringements really expensive and also making establishments responsible for their clientele. So the idea would be to tax the shit out of anything gun related, increase penalties for gun based offences and make the dealers and gun manufacturers responsible for selling guns that end up being used in crimes. Once you hit people in the hip pocket the culture changes pretty fast.

  80. thumper1990 says

    Filthy Lib’ruls would only use guns to advance the Gay Agenda, and negros would only use them to rob convenience stores owned by Indian people. White folks needs ‘e to protect themselves from all that, amirite?

  81. richardh says

    nothing which would completely restrict the possession of something legally owned and enjoyed by tens of millions comes close to being “common sense”

    Right. I’ll give up my slaves when you pry them from my cold, dead hands.

  82. Ichthyic says

    regulatory burden to make gun owner’s live miserable

    LOL

    fucking liar. this is the same lie told by homophobes who say that granting marriage equality to gay couples would “make their lives miserable”.

    it’s the same lie, told by ignorant bigoted white men, when they claimed that grating equal rights to black people would “make their lives miserable”.

    The only truth is, YOU ARE MISERABLE. and the reason is, because you have made a mockery of your own life, and just don’t want to admit it.

    there IS one thing those guns you love are good for, but i doubt a miserable piece of crap like yourself would be brave enough to do it.

    remove your pathetic “misery” from the rest of us, and make the world a better place.

  83. anteprepro says

    About the Black Panthers thing I just mentioned: Found a bunch of liberal sources mentioning it, but can’t find any links to primary sources on the topic. *shrug*

    No, I get that. I say “Licensing”, they yell “Fascism!!11!!”, I say “Huh?” then they have to try and explain why it’s a bad idea. That’s why none of their arguments make any fucking sense.

    Heh. Yeah, and that mirrors sooooo many other debates we have right-wingers as well. Seriously, I find homophobes, especially non-religious ones, even more baffling then gun fetishists.

    The NRA is full of delusional man-children who think they are all John fucking Wayne. They haven’t watched spaghetti westerns. They should have.

    Hah. Perfect. I was just thinking earlier that I would say that accusing NRA of being influenced by all kinds of Westerns would be unfair, because there are Spaghetti Westerns that are too morally ambiguous and more realistic than the “Superhero with Mad Gun Skillz” kind of Western . If they digested such Westerns into their worldview, their brains would explode.

  84. notsont says

    Most people don’t even understand how fucked up our gun laws are, They have this vision of criminals using guns that are stolen or obtained through shady deals. In every police drama you can name, someone is shot, they recover the weapon and within minutes trace the gun to the guy who bought it.

    Little do they know you can simply go to one of a number of states legally buy weapons, and go on a shooting spree leaving the weapons behind you and they will never be able to track where those weapons came from. In some instances the law actually prevents them from knowing where the guns came from.

  85. thumper1990 says

    @ Doug Little

    So the idea would be to tax the shit out of anything gun related, increase penalties for gun based offences and make the dealers and gun manufacturers responsible for selling guns that end up being used in crimes.

    That last one is the kicker, apparently. See Ogvorbis at #61.

  86. mikeyb says

    Yeah if only Clint Eastwood would stick to directing and acting in mostly great films, and stop debating empty chairs (i.e. keep his mouth shut about all subjects politics), perhaps all would be well. It mystifies me how such a fine actor and director can have such stupid political opinions. But again, you could say the same about many many others like Jimmy Stewart.

  87. w00dview says

    David Marjanović @ 91

    Good point. I have not watched spaghetti westerns in a while and I suppose the shades of grey they contain is too much for gun nuts who think all problems are solved by shooting shit. John Wayne is a better comparison.

    @ Doug Little

    So the idea would be to tax the shit out of anything gun related

    That would be a good solution but that little word I bolded would be yet another reason the wingnuts would fight such a proposal with bellowing ferocity. Remember these are people who think taxing millionaires is one of the greatest injustices in history. Taxing their little toys would make them froth at the mouth so much you would think they got rabies.

    Sigh. Imagine how much better the US could be if they did not have a bunch of wilfully ignorant, greed worshiping sociopaths infesting their political system.

  88. Xaivius (Formerly Robpowell, Acolyte of His Majesty Lord Niel DeGrasse Tyson I) says

    That last one is the kicker, apparently. See Ogvorbis at #61.
    –thumper1990@98

    And it is fucking colossal bullshit legislation. An FFL with bad habits needs to be removed from the distribution chain. WA state liquor licenses are like this, where one offense is probation (and they monitor the SHIT out of the establishment) as well as massive fines, and the second results in the loss of the license and usually jail time for someone. This standard should be applied to FFLs. Period. Making it ILLEGAL for the manufacturers to sell to an FFL that isn’t keeping a tight shop IS common sense. The fact that this isn’t standard just shows how moronic the National Man-Rifle Love Association is.

    Like I said: Licenses. Pretty much solution to all the problems

  89. thumper1990 says

    @Xaivius

    Assuming an FFL is a license to sell firearms, then I am totally and completely in agreement.

  90. Rey Fox says

    If they are worried about those rules being law then they are clearly not following them, the liars.

    I take opposition to gun control as a tacit admission that the person can’t or shouldn’t be trusted with guns. If you were such a responsible gun owner, then you’d have nothing to worry about, right? It would just be a little more onerous to get another one of your toys. Just like how onerous it is to be licensed and to purchase an automobile.

  91. thumper1990 says

    @Rey Fox

    Yes, that is precisely my point :) Nice analogy with the car license, I should have thought of that…

  92. Xaivius (Formerly Robpowell, Acolyte of His Majesty Lord Niel DeGrasse Tyson I) says

    Assuming an FFL is a license to sell firearms, then I am totally and completely in agreement.
    –thumper1990@102

    An FFL is the Federal Firearms License, which is the existing structure for licensing all professional retailers of firearms. I’m very much in line with a Personal Firearms License (in line with Rey Fox’s suggestion) as a means to provide a simple credential to verify purchasing bona-fides. Unfortunately, like every other measure, the majority of the burden will be on the states to ensure that their records are up to date and submitted on a regular basis. This was one of my other major bugbears: Mandatory quarterly reporting, with a federal embargo on transactions to dealers in the state if this isn’t maintained.

  93. indicus says

    @ Doug, since even those supporting gun control state that firearms are used in self-defense in this country on the order of 100,000+ times per year, it is hardly a matter of Hollywood. Double that since I personally know individuals who have used firearms (more specifically, the threat from a firearm without pulling the trigger) in self-defense. It happens. Get over it. The simple fact that those who want to use firearms to commit crimes will ALWAYS get access to them. Civilians who can handle a gun and want to carry one may be no means be a sure bet on safety, but it is certainly better than nothing.

    @ anteprepro, Are you being serious? Yes, my life is FAR more important than that of some scumbag who is threatening me so he can steal from me and do who-knows-what-else. Pardon me for not placing my faith blindly in the human race, but I would assume that someone is is trying to loot my home/business during a riot does NOT have my best interests in mind. I’m not willing to trust they only want my property and aren’t going to, oh, I don’t know… try to beat me to death while a LA News Service helicopter captures it on live TV. Here is a simple solution. If you don’t want to get shot while looting during a riot, DON’T LOOT DURING A FUCKING RIOT!

    @ Thumper, No, actually I’m not opposed to the background checks buyers go through when purchasing from a licensed dealer. It’s a matter of numbers and reality. Most firearms used in crimes come directly from illegal sources or are stolen or through straw purchases. Obviously, more background checks aren’t going to help with the first two. There are some fine suggestions for limiting the third which, if offered as stand-alone bills, would pass virtually unanimously. The fact that they don’t pass because they get weighed down with provisions designed to restrict legal gun ownership instead of criminal activity does NOT shine poorly on gun owners, it shines poorly on those scumbags like Feinstein and Schumer for whom stopping shootings is a secondary intention to making legal gun owner’s lives a nightmare. Getting back on point, licensed dealers are the only significant way in which prohibited persons are getting firearms due to the gaping holes in information sharing and other aspects of the system. Therefore, I can swallow having a check run on me when I buy from these sources because I know it is probably making a tangible difference. Would I prefer to not have to? Sure, but this is the world we live in. The point is, gun shows and private sales do NOT constitute a source of firearms from criminals. Even the Justice Department statistics say so… seven-tenths of a percentage of all guns used on crimes, and most of those from by first-time offenders anyway. Unlicensed dealers selling hunting weapons at shows. They sell antiques. NONE of the shootings which the gun control crowd has claimed would have been prevented by closing the “loophole” would have been affected. Not Newtown, not Aurora, not Virginia Tech, not Columbine, not Tuscon, etc, etc.

  94. Doug Little says

    Doug, since even those supporting gun control state that firearms are used in self-defense in this country on the order of 100,000+ times per year,

    Citation needed or am I to take your word for it.

    Double that since I personally know individuals who have used firearms (more specifically, the threat from a firearm without pulling the trigger) in self-defense. It happens. Get over it.

    Ohhhh anecdotal evidence that sounds convincing.

    The simple fact that those who want to use firearms to commit crimes will ALWAYS get access to them

    Again the stats in countries with strict gun control would disagree with you on this point.

  95. Doug Little says

    Civilians who can handle a gun and want to carry one may be no means be a sure bet on safety, but it is certainly better than nothing.

    So your life is worth less than the money that you have in your wallet?

  96. daniellavine says

    Indicus@107:

    since even those supporting gun control state that firearms are used in self-defense in this country on the order of 100,000+ times per year, it is hardly a matter of Hollywood.

    Citation needed.

    Double that since I personally know individuals who have used firearms (more specifically, the threat from a firearm without pulling the trigger) in self-defense.

    How does this justify “doubling” the number? Citation needed.

    The simple fact that those who want to use firearms to commit crimes will ALWAYS get access to them.

    …aaaaand citation needed. Why should I believe this? I would imagine some people who want to use firearms to commit crimes have an easy time getting them and some have a somewhat more difficult time and perhaps don’t bother to commit those crimes as a result. If you make it more difficult to get guns I would imagine the second class would grow and the first class would shrink. You’ve offered no reasons to doubt this simple, common-sense point of view.

    For example, prohibition made it harder to get alcohol whether or not someone wanted to drink alcohol. The homeless at the time were not drinking sterno because it tastes great. Prices and profit margins on drugs are higher under prohibitory regimes that restrict supply than without them. That’s just econ 101.

    If you make it harder or more expensive to obtain guns then fewer “criminals” will have the resources necessary to get guns. Simple common sense.

  97. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Yawn, bully indicus can’t prove his points, only keep repeating them ad nauseum. Which is a form of bullying. It also shows xis lack of honesty and integrity. If xe can’t put up, and can’t shut up, on those points, the only logical recourse is that he is a sloganeering liar and bullshitter. As is shown by his each and every post.

  98. Doug Little says

    indicus,

    you didn’t answer these questions

    How often do “gun owners” purchase firearms that some extra regulations would be a burden on them and make their lives miserable? You make it sound like people are buying a gun a week or something to be so put out by stricter regulations. How many guns do you fucking need?

    Made in one of my earlier comments. I’d be interested in your reply.

  99. WharGarbl says

    @indicus
    #107

    It’s a matter of numbers and reality. Most firearms used in crimes come directly from illegal sources or are stolen or through straw purchases. Obviously, more background checks aren’t going to help with the first two. There are some fine suggestions for limiting the third which, if offered as stand-alone bills, would pass virtually unanimously.

    Like the mandatory background check? The same one that didn’t pass the senate?

    The fact that they don’t pass because they get weighed down with provisions designed to restrict legal gun ownership instead of criminal activity does NOT shine poorly on gun owners, it shines poorly on those scumbags like Feinstein and Schumer for whom stopping shootings is a secondary intention to making legal gun owner’s lives a nightmare.

    Each amendment is separate. I would be fine if they can’t get the assault weapon & high cap magazine through. But given the chance to just vote in the BACKGROUND CHECK, they didn’t even do that!
    http://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2013/04/17/us/politics/new-gun-measures-considered-by-the-senate.html?_r=0

    Therefore, I can swallow having a check run on me when I buy from these sources because I know it is probably making a tangible difference.

    … my friend bought a few guns before (including a high-powered rifle for range shooting). He described the process as thus.
    1. Fill in your name.
    2. Fill in your address.
    3. Fill in your social security number.
    4. Tick a few Yes/No question box (mostly asking “Are you a felon?” and others).
    5. Wait a few minutes for the store to check with FBI.
    6. Get gun.
    In fact, process described here matches up fairly well (granted, he’s in Texas, for gun-shop here generally does the minimum required).
    http://www.marketplace.org/topics/business/guns-and-dollars/background-check-what-it-really-takes-buy-gun
    And you can’t even swallow THAT? How lazy are you?
    Fuck! I go through more fucking trouble getting a driver’s license than that!

  100. says

    It has already been said, but bears repeating. This bill didn’t ‘fail to be passed’ or ‘didn’t have the votes to pass’, it wasn’t ‘voted down’, because it wasn’t voted on. It couldn’t pass the 60 vote filibuster threshold. If it had come to an actual vote it would have passed. It is very important distinction.

  101. WharGarbl says

    @Doug Little
    #112

    How often do “gun owners” purchase firearms that some extra regulations would be a burden on them and make their lives miserable? You make it sound like people are buying a gun a week or something to be so put out by stricter regulations. How many guns do you fucking need?

    Oh, it’s a burden alright. One of my friend loved guns (for target shooting and goes nuts with just about anything mechanical), he owned I think close to a dozen guns of various type (pistols, shotgun, bolt-action rifles, 50 cal). And he told me that the damn background check was so annoying…
    … oh wait, he didn’t. It’s more of a hassle to maintain those guns (half an hour per use) than to buy it (background check, a few minutes).

  102. Ichthyic says

    Double that since I personally know individuals who have used firearms (more specifically, the threat from a firearm without pulling the trigger) in self-defense.

    data /= personal anecdote motherfucker.

    again, take your lies and your feux “misery” and shove them up your sorry ass.

  103. indicus says

    @ Doug and daniellavine, David Hemenway (1997) in response to Kleck & Gertz (1995) gave a figure between 76,000-150,000. There was another response to K&G which gave a similar estimate, though the citation escapes me at the moment.

    @ Doug, anecdotal evidence is a fair response to those who claim gun-related self-defense never happens. Anecdotal evidence would be worthless in trying to argue for general statements or rates, but works just fine in response to such a moronic claims as “It never happens”. As far as stats go, we are not talking about Canada, or Japan, or Finland. We are talking about the United States. To think crime is merely related to the presence (plus or minus) of firearms is short-sighted in the extreme. Its just as off to think that a simple comparison can be made between relatively small countries with smaller populations (and a smaller number of major urban areas) and no significant history of firearm ownership to relatively large countries with large populations (and many large urban areas) and an enormous history of firearm ownership, not to mention the countless socio-economic and other differences between them. Apples and oranges. And no, my life isn’t worth more than the cash I carry on me. The problem is, I have no assurance a given individual would settle for the money and run off. There are far too many stories of criminals getting what they demanded and executing the victim(s) anyway. Bob’s Big Boy in L.A. springs to mind.

    @ daniellavine, “double” was meant as a figure of speech. As for the availability of firearms, please compare the crime statistics of places such as Chicago and D.C. to the rest of the country. As far as your Prohibition example, overall drinking rates increased during that period. Yes, the quality of alcohol went off a cliff but how is that relevant? Taking your example and substituting guns for booze, the sort of gun control measures advocated for here would lead to an increase in the number of firearms (albeit of older vintage and poorer condition, as thus more dangerous) and drive the use of such underground with absolutely no opportunity for regulation, while at the same time making a lot of very nasty people very rich. Sounds like a great idea.

  104. Ichthyic says

    The 100,000 counts of self-defense appears to be legit

    now then, compare that to the number of accidental shooting injuries.

    then tell me guns save lives.

    don’t care which side of this you’re on, the numbers don’t add up to being in favor of free gun ownership.

  105. Ichthyic says

    anecdotal evidence is a fair response

    no, it really isn’t.

    do you know anyone who has been injured in a shooting accident?

    where’s your anecdotes about those, considering they outnumber the cases of successful self defense by at least an order of magnitude?

    you’re pathetic.

  106. Doug Little says

    WharGarbi

    I’d be highly skeptical of the first site listed there. I could not access any of the primary material that the guy was basing those figures on. And the sample size and questioning of the survey seems highly suspect to be drawing a nationwide conclusion.

  107. indicus says

    @ Doug, collectors (who would be hurt by closing the gunshow “Loophole” the most) may purchase a considerable number of firearms for personal use, trade, etc. Exactly how many depends on the individual but enough that the proposed regulations would force many of them out. Keep in mind that these are weapons which might not have been fired since the First World War and are NOT being used in shootings or crime. They are sitting on racks, acting as pieces of history and occasionally going on a trip to the range. Not exactly a real security issue.

    @ Whar, I just said I COULD swallow that. Can’t you read?

  108. Doug Little says

    Doug, anecdotal evidence is a fair response to those who claim gun-related self-defense never happens. Anecdotal evidence would be worthless in trying to argue for general statements or rates, but works just fine in response to such a moronic claims as “It never happens”

    Where the fuck did I say “It never happens”.

  109. Caveat Imperator says

    For those who say that if we outlaw or restrict guns, then the only gun owners will be criminals, there are two problems. The first, as mentioned above, is that evidence from many other countries indicates otherwise. The second is that there are multiple kinds of criminals. Not all criminals, even violent ones, are professional criminals with the money and connections to get illegal guns. If some random schmuck decides to rob a convenience store to pay off his credit card debt, is he going to go through the trouble of finding out how to buy an assault weapon on the black market?

    Though this does pose one interesting question which I do not think I know enough to answer; if the federal government successfully bans assault weapons, institutes a buy back program or something similar, and the stigma against guns remains as strong as it is now, will a black market for these guns still develop, much in the same way it has for illegal drugs? And if so, how widespread will it be? Guns, after all, are not consumable in the same manner as drugs.

  110. WharGarbl says

    @Ichthyic
    #120

    now then, compare that to the number of accidental shooting injuries.

    From here:
    http://www.gunpolicy.org/firearms/region/united-states
    Using 2011 statistics:
    Total: 32,1635
    Unintentional: 851

    I use the above source since it puts everything in a nice, easy to find format.
    Note that even with 100,000 self-defense incidence, not ALL those incidences would’ve resulted in death if there wasn’t a gun (phrase it simply, 100,000 incidences of self-defense don’t translate to 100,000 lives saved. It just meant that it potentially deterred 100,000 crimes, which may be as “harmless” as theft).

  111. Doug Little says

    There are far too many stories of criminals getting what they demanded and executing the victim(s) anyway.

    Sigh, Citation needed

  112. indicus says

    @ Ichthyic, accidental shootings are LOWER than the use of firearms in self-defense by an order of magnitude (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gun_violence_in_the_United_States). Do some research before opening your mouth you worthless fuckwit. And no, I don’t know ANYONE who accidentally discharged a firearm. Ever. Because most shooters actually do know our asses from a hole in the ground, despite the popular stereotype.

  113. WharGarbl says

    @Doug Little
    #122

    I’d be highly skeptical of the first site listed there. I could not access any of the primary material that the guy was basing those figures on. And the sample size and questioning of the survey seems highly suspect to be drawing a nationwide conclusion.

    I’m aware of that, that’s why I posted the wikipedia article following that (I was suspicious of the number at first so I went Wikipedia for more broader set of data).
    This is not exactly scientific, but the 100,000 counts seems to be somewhat reasonable (65,000 appears to be the lower bound, with 1.5 million from DoJ which, admittedly, came from self-reporting and may have over-estimated by some large margin).

  114. indicus says

    @ Doug, “Where the fuck did I say ‘It never happens’” I wasn’t referring to you, but plenty of others around here have said exactly that. As far as a citation for getting robbed and then killed, as I mentioned the Bob’s Big Boy in L.A. was the most infamous case. I could look up more but I’d prefer not to become depressed…

  115. mythbri says

    @indicus

    I don’t trust any of the numbers you’ve haphazardly thrown out because the CDC has not been allowed to study gun violence or anything related for years.

    How do you know that the vast majority of guns used in acts of gun violence were illegally obtained?

    The answer is that you fucking don’t know, because you want that to be the answer.

  116. WharGarbl says

    @mythbri
    #131
    Depending on which number you meant, some of those number do appeared to be reasonable range based on other research sources.

    Of course, first step to any reasonable gun laws would have to start with research on gun violence.

    Is it much too much to ask the following.
    1. Require background checks for all purchase. Perhaps with an alternative/enhancement allowing individual to “pre-pass” background check and get a license that they’re required to show when purchasing guns from any sources?
    2. Require, at minimum, a special license to own high-capacity magazine?

    And if you want to argue 2nd amendment, let me put up some analogy WITH the 1st amendment.
    1. I’m required to get a license to “practice” my freedom of speech through radio (I cannot just setup an antenna and broadcast me singing, say, My Little Pony theme song 24/7).
    2. I’m required to get ANOTHER license to “practice” my freedom of speech through high-powered radio (+100W, I think that’s the current threshold).

    You have the freedom to express yourself (own a gun). It is constitutional to restrict the medium (ways to obtain said gun) you’re allowed express yourself. It is ALSO constitutional to restrict certain type of speeches (types of gun you can own).

  117. methuseus says

    @indicus 128
    That Wikipedia article states around 65,000 incidents of handgun self-protection, which includes, as WharGarbl said at 126, not all would have been lives saved anyway. There is a quote in the article, also:
    There were 52,447 deliberate and 23,237 accidental non-fatal gunshot injuries in the United States during 2000.
    this says that there are about half as many accidental injuries from firearms, if this can be taken as average. Now, I know that is only one year, but that is literally the only data on accidental discharges in the Wikipedia article.

  118. says

    I am quite frankly amazed that the US has no registry of what gun belongs to who.

    Ooh, ooh, let me field this one, NRA: “Because it would be even scarier than background checks, and having the government know who every single person who had a gun was, and how many, would make it easier to steal them all, as is their true dastardly plan!” You know.. because sending a large squad of heavily armed people, in an APC, or possibly even a tank, and telling them, “Just shoot anyone that resists.”, would be like.. completely out, if they decided to actually take every person’s guns in the country. But, somehow, these morons seem to think that a government willing to step on everyone’s rights that severely isn’t going to be equally ruthless in enforcing it, unlike, say, every other fraking dictatorship.

    Hell, I just got through reading Alice in Deadland, and my first thought was not “Nah, no way a lot of super rich would side with some Chinese authorities, to start a large scale nuclear war, as a means of wiping out 90% of the population, then enslaving most of the people left, on the theory that it would allow natural resources, like oil to last longer.”, but, instead, my thought was, “With the sort of insane shit going on today, by plutocrats, right wing nut cases, and war mongers, its just too bad a zombie plague won’t happen to ruin their plans, if they actually pulled some complete crap like this.” BTW – I also think that, the story doesn’t do justice to a) how useless everyone having guns would be against such a plague, but I do find it ironic that the characters b) fail to make any real head way against people willing, and able to fire bomb whole settlements, nuke cities, and throw thousands of forced, and brainwashed “volunteers” against resistance movements, until they manage to 1) join forces with the undead, and 2) capture some of the enemies vastly more powerful technologies.

  119. Doug Little says

    @ Doug, collectors (who would be hurt by closing the gunshow “Loophole” the most) may purchase a considerable number of firearms for personal use, trade, etc. Exactly how many depends on the individual but enough that the proposed regulations would force many of them out.

    If they are legitimate collectors I highly doubt that a few more forms to sign and a background check, which sounds like it takes minutes will force most of them out. How fucking lazy are these people?

  120. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Indicus can’t put up, can’t shut the fuck up. Nothing but a liar and bullshitter. Make xim prove each and every claim. Xe can’t. Nothing but mindless slogans behind the veneer of “evidence”.

  121. Xaivius (Formerly Robpowell, Acolyte of His Majesty Lord Niel DeGrasse Tyson I) says

    Is it much too much to ask the following.
    1. Require background checks for all purchase. Perhaps with an alternative/enhancement allowing individual to “pre-pass” background check and get a license that they’re required to show when purchasing guns from any sources?
    2. Require, at minimum, a special license to own high-capacity magazine?
    –WharGarbl@132

    This is reinforcing my “License the damn things” principle. A simple tiered license would relieve these issues, implement a liability system, and speed up things for the majority of gun owners. Those terrified of a NATO Katanagari are fucking idiots (who probably shouldn’t have guns).

    –indicus@130
    I see your arguments are still as bland and poorly sourced as the last gun thread. Still having your solid snake fantasies of holding a terrifying arabic man at bay with a pistol in the middle of the night?

  122. indicus says

    @ mythbri, Yes the CDC has not been doing those sort of studies (no, I don’t have a problem with them doing them) but that hasn’t prevented more media outlets, academics, sociologists, criminologists, individuals, etc, etc than you could shake a big stick at from researching exactly that topic. Where do you think the studies I linked to came from? And these are people who SUPPORT tighter gun control. So please don’t bullshit me by telling me we are looking at a wasteland of data because Uncle Sam isn’t paying for research in this field. Everyone else and their dog IS. As far as your dispute to my claim that most guns were illegally obtained, this is a little odd considering that both the gun control crowd and the NRA have been talking about cracking down on straw purchases (yes, those are illegal) since time began. I don’t think ANYONE disputes where most guns are coming from. But just in case you need it in writing: http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/pages/frontline/shows/guns/procon/guns.html

  123. Xaivius (Formerly Robpowell, Acolyte of His Majesty Lord Niel DeGrasse Tyson I) says

    @Nerd of Redhead:

    So when does this become *Floosh*? or did it already? I might have missed the dismissal.

  124. Doug Little says

    methuseus @133,

    Actually it states 64,615 incidents of self defense but also states that 20% of these were police officers so the figure for civilians would be 51,692. Also the study was conducted from 1987 to 1990, so we really don’t know what the actual figures are as they relate to gun violence today.

  125. indicus says

    @ Dourg, the immediate response is why should someone have to go through ANY loops, no matter how simple you may think they are, to sell a piece of his property which isn’t being used in shootings, isn’t being used to rob people, isn’t being used for anything illegal at all, anywhere?

  126. sundoga says

    As a long time supporter of the Second Amendment – I gotta say Instapundit deserved that 100%.

  127. Xaivius (Formerly Robpowell, Acolyte of His Majesty Lord Niel DeGrasse Tyson I) says

    @ Dourg, the immediate response is why should someone have to go through ANY loops, no matter how simple you may think they are, to sell a piece of his property which isn’t being used in shootings, isn’t being used to rob people, isn’t being used for anything illegal at all, anywhere?
    –indicus@141

    You mean, like, say, a Car, which requires licensing and transfer fees? Or a house, which has a giant pile of ownership transfer, regulatory, and licensing documentation? IMAGINE. FUCKING. THAT. Transferring property is of interest to the government, so they required documentation of the transfer, much like they should with firearms.

  128. Doug Little says

    hasn’t prevented more media outlets, academics, sociologists, criminologists, individuals, etc, etc than you could shake a big stick at from researching exactly that topic.

    Where do you think the studies I linked to came from?

    What studies did you link to? I looked back over your posts and you linked to exactly 0 studies. From what I can gather you mention the Kleck study and a David Hemenway study. Hemenway himself stated that the incidents are so rare that it is hard to draw any conclusions from the data stating that the Keleck figure of 2.5million had a confidence interval of 0-2.5 million.

  129. mythbri says

    @indicus

    As far as your dispute to my claim that most guns were illegally obtained, this is a little odd considering that both the gun control crowd and the NRA have been talking about cracking down on straw purchases (yes, those are illegal) since time began.

    Then why, pray tell, has the NRA opposed appointing a full-time head of the ATF, as well as funding and resources for that agency to enforce the laws we already have, which is what I hear gun advocates bleating about every time the issue of gun control comes up?

    Because the NRA doesn’t represent its members, and if you believe that, you’re deluding yourself. It represents the arms manufacturing industry.

    http://articles.washingtonpost.com/2013-01-16/world/36384376_1_atf-director-kenneth-melson-gun-lobby

  130. Doug Little says

    @ Dourg, the immediate response is why should someone have to go through ANY loops, no matter how simple you may think they are, to sell a piece of his property which isn’t being used in shootings, isn’t being used to rob people, isn’t being used for anything illegal at all, anywhere?

    Why should anybody in demolition have to go through ANY loops[sic] when purchasing explosives? There not being used to rob people aren’t being used in bombings and aren’t being used for anything illegal.

  131. Xaivius (Formerly Robpowell, Acolyte of His Majesty Lord Niel DeGrasse Tyson I) says

    NRA are Shills
    Mythbri@146

    Truth. Anecdotally, My liberal, socialist, gun-owning friends and I have completely disowned the organization as a sock-puppet for the tea party and radical right. I still don’t understand why anyone would want to be represented by that… thing.

  132. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    So when does this become *Floosh*? or did it already? I might have missed the dismissal.

    Indicus is in the permanent toilet, so everybody should “floosh* each post for all the lack of evidence and rationality presented. I’m just reminding xim of the lack of evidence for his slogans.

  133. Xaivius (Formerly Robpowell, Acolyte of His Majesty Lord Niel DeGrasse Tyson I) says

    aaaaaaaaaand blew the block quote termination. Speaking of the NRA, someone needs to remove WLP’s head from his ass long enough to tell him that we can’t enforce existing laws when his little corruption racket is busy bribing people to do the opposite.

  134. daniellavine says

    @Indicus:

    You need to do a better job of indicating whether you’re making factual claims or using “figures of speech”. It is not clear when you keep citing statistics without offering citations whether you’re bullshitting or not.

    As for the availability of firearms, please compare the crime statistics of places such as Chicago and D.C. to the rest of the country.

    That would make sense except for a few really important points:
    1) The crime rate is not driven wholly or even primarily by the availability of firearms. Comparing the increase in crime in DC during the period in question to the corresponding nation-wide increase in crime should demonstrate this rather clearly: crime went up everywhere regardless of availability of firearms. Thus, the real question of the efficacy of the ban could only be answered by a counterfactual: what would have been DC and Chicago’s crime rates in the absence of such a ban? This question simply cannot be answered. Thus it does not follow that the ban on handguns in DC and Chicago did nothing or caused more crime — the much more likely explanation is that other factors were at work there.
    2) A handgun ban limited to a single municipality doesn’t make much sense in the first place. If I lived in DC and wanted to get a handgun I could presumably drive to Baltimore or NOVA where there is no such ban and be back to DC within a few hours. Thus I personally would not expect a ban limited in geography to a single municipality to have much effect even within that municipality.

    As far as your Prohibition example, overall drinking rates increased during that period.

    Citation needed. Or don’t bother because you’re factually incorrect.

  135. erichoug says

    IF ever you needed proof that our government no longer represents “We, the People”, this is it! The vast majority of Americans, last I read something like 80%, support universal background checks and the other provisions in the bill that just got killed. And, here we are with it blocked by a bunch of partisan hacks that are bought and pair for by big money interests.

    I don’t think this should have been controversial, there is no rational argument you can make against universal background checks. Hell even most of the gun owners support it.

    I think that the Right Wing nutbags have gone too far this time and I am more than hoping they pay the price for it at the poles in 2014. In the mean time, stay angry.

  136. says

    There was a mention of concealed weapons up-thread. (see mikeyb @46)

    The Machin/Toomey proposal to expand background checks on firearm purchases was clearly the highest-profile gun measure considered in the Senate yesterday, but it wasn’t the only one. In all, seven separate amendments were brought to the floor, each needing 60 votes. All seven failed, including measures on magazine size and straw-purchasing penalties.

    In an ironic twist, of the seven amendments, the one that received the highest number of votes (57) was Senate Minority Whip John Cornyn’s (R-Texas) proposal on interstate reciprocity for concealed-carry permits. In other words, four months after the massacre at Sandy Hook Elementary, one of the more popular ideas was weakening limits on guns.

    Maddow Blog link.

  137. madscientist says

    Maybe we really do need a “gun registry” – that’ll make those pussies in the NRA crap their pants. They’re so delusional they believe keeping records on who owns guns is the same as depriving them of their penis compensators.

  138. Rey Fox says

    If they are legitimate collectors I highly doubt that a few more forms to sign and a background check, which sounds like it takes minutes will force most of them out.

    Oh, but it will make them miserable and their lives will be a living hell! Please spare a thought for the poor poor gun strokers and the sea of red tape that they’re literally drowning in!

  139. Cyranothe2nd, ladyporn afficianado says

    @ Indicus

    And no, I don’t know ANYONE who accidentally discharged a firearm. Ever.

    I personally know three people who have accidentally shot themselves or been shot. My soon-to-be cousin -in-law was shot in the head when someone in the house he was standing outside of kicked a loaded gun, causing it to discharge through the wall into him.

    A friend of mine from high school lost the lower half of his leg in a hunting accident when he accidentally shot himself.

    My partner’s best friend’s sister recently shot her own foot and lost half of it.

    See? My anecdata defeats your anecdata.

  140. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    They’re so delusional they believe keeping records on who owns guns is the same as depriving them of their penis compensators.

    I think their real problem is that if officials notice several weapons, they will stop by to make sure range safety rules are in operation, under threat of law. What good is being Rambo if you must handle your weapons with the respect they and anybody around you deserve to maintain safety.

  141. kyoseki says

    Does anyone have the text of the bill to hand?

    If the assault weapons crap went back in, I’m not surprised it failed, but I was under the impression that it had been removed?

  142. ck says

    In case anyone was worried that the spineless background checks that are currently required might not get repealed by the NRA, they’ve put out new ads that proudly claim (lie) that 80% of police think background checks are useless. I think it ought to be clear at this point: They don’t give a shit about “responsible gun ownership”; They want free-for-all gun ownership.

  143. brive1987 says

    Doug Little #92

    “No so. In Australia the drinking culture was changed by making binge drinking and DUI infringements really expensive and also making establishments responsible for their clientele.”

    Changed but not improved …..

  144. anteprepro says

    In case anyone was worried that the spineless background checks that are currently required might not get repealed by the NRA, they’ve put out new ads that proudly claim (lie) that 80% of police think background checks are useless.

    Holy shit, even the polls that they’ve based that ad on are ludicrous. 20% of police think that an assaults weapon ban will have a negative effect on crime (compared to the 71% who think it will have no effect and the combined 7% who think it will have any amount of positive effect). I would love to hear how the mechanism for that would fucking work (though if it involved fucking police officers salivating over the prospect of civilian cowboys, I would shit with rage). 80% think a gun at Newtown would have reduced casualties, and 76% want to arm teachers. They overwhelming blame gun violence on poor parenting and family values, with “pop culture” and “not keeping teh Criminals arrested long enough” are a not-too-distant second, while economic factors and the easy attainability of firearms are left in the fucking dust.

    And further entertainment: The article mentions that the “80% say background checks have no effect” is pulled out of the video’s ass, but I also can’t find any evidence for the video’s third claim, that “91% say the answer is swift and mandatory punishment”. Gun fetishists *shakes head*

  145. txpiper says

    “Who could possibly want felons or people with violent mental illnesses to be able to buy guns casually?”

    Eric Holder’s Justice Department.

    “…we’re going to have to change American culture”

    Good luck with that.

  146. says

    Kagehi:
    Indicus’ idiotic gun nuttery (which xe still has failed to justify; I know why you need food, air, water…I know why freedom of speech and bodily autonomy are rights…I am still waiting for sufficient justification for firearm possession to be a right) aside, I have to go buy Alice in Deadland. Thanks for mentioning it.

  147. says

    Daniellavine @151:
    Thanks for that info on Prohibition. Though I was surprised that the link you provided didnt list its sources, it prompted me to follow up. Lo and behold, my long held belief that Prohibition caused Americans to drink more was wrong.
    (Sorry for the derail)

  148. says

    Perhaps one start to changing Americas culture would be to stop indoctrinating children at young ages to think that guns will solve problems or are a sign of maturity/manhood, and start teaching them that guns are killing tools and using one should be done with a full understanding of their lethality.

  149. ck says

    anteprepro,

    Who needs facts? They’ve got guns. They don’t need some pencil-necked nerd to tell them what is true. Did you catch the part where the respondents were all self-selected by recruiting on a message board?

    On another note, I’m always amused when gun fetishists talk about how evil the government is, and how the government will have to pry the guns out of that person’s cold, dead hands. I think those terms would be perfectly acceptable to any institution that lived up to those claims.

  150. says

    Truth. Anecdotally, My liberal, socialist, gun-owning friends and I have completely disowned the organization as a sock-puppet for the tea party and radical right.

    Don’t remember which one, but one of the news pundits on MSNBC put up NRA rhetoric side by side with the old “Smoker’s Rights”, entirely fake, advocacy group, that the tobacco industry tried to use to support the idea that the public didn’t believe it was dangerous, or should be taxed, or anything else should be done, like adding warning labels. rhetoric. Other than replacing the term “smoking” with, say “hunting”, or “cigarette”, with “firearm”, they sounding like someone playing bloody Mad Libs, and just dropping in which ever product and related past time fit into the pre-written script.

  151. thumper1990 says

    Quick note to all sensible Americans: having finally caught up on this thread, I am so, so sorry you have to share a country with these mentally-masturbating John-Wayne-wannabe manchildren. Honestly, you all deserve endless amounts of hugs, tea, and sympathy for putting up with them.

  152. WharGarbl says

    @ck
    #169

    On another note, I’m always amused when gun fetishists talk about how evil the government is, and how the government will have to pry the guns out of that person’s cold, dead hands. I think those terms would be perfectly acceptable to any institution that lived up to those claims.
    That one always made me laugh.
    Seriously, you think owning a few semi-auto (or hell, a full auto) assault rifle is going to help against trained professionals with grenades, body-armors, APC, tanks, fighter/bombers, and drones?

  153. anteprepro says

    Seriously, you think owning a few semi-auto (or hell, a full auto) assault rifle is going to help against trained professionals with grenades, body-armors, APC, tanks, fighter/bombers, and drones?

    Yes, they “seriously” “think” that. . Because (as I said in a related speculative screed on the topic of libertarians) they think they are Mary Sues in their own little gun-centric novella, complete with plot armor. Of course they can fight off the army all on their lonesome with enough gunz: they’re the Good Guy. They can change the course of history through sheer force of awesomeness. They are the specialest snowflakes that could ever out-ninja Seal Team Six. They are the wisest and most learned of armchair scholars that ever outsmarted those edujamacated elitists. They are demigods entirely because they can’t imagine they can easily imagine how frail and fragile the human body is but choose to not apply that imagination to themselves. They are the asskickingest asskickers who never actually kicked anyone’s ass. So to think that they, virtuous and clever and nigh immortal, couldn’t take down an army singlehandedly? Well, that’s just foolish librul talk, right thar.

  154. Xaivius (Formerly Robpowell, Acolyte of His Majesty Lord Niel DeGrasse Tyson I) says

    Seriously, you think owning a few semi-auto (or hell, a full auto) assault rifle is going to help against trained professionals with grenades, body-armors, APC, tanks, fighter/bombers, and drones?
    –WharGarbl@173

    [snark] Hey, it’s working for the taliban insurgents! [/snark]

    On a more serious note, I think the big thing to get drilled into our culture needs to be treating firearms less like toys/power symbols, and more like power tools and heavy machinery: Useful for specific purposes, but dangerous as hell if misused or not respected. And deliberate misuse can be horrifying. I’m not going to go into the manchildren that treat powertools the same way. They are troglodytes that should be shunned.

  155. Ulysses says

    WharGarbl @173

    Seriously, you think owning a few semi-auto (or hell, a full auto) assault rifle is going to help against trained professionals with grenades, body-armors, APC, tanks, fighter/bombers, and drones?

    In 1943 Jews in the Warsaw Ghetto tried to prevent shipment of victims to extermination camps. Several thousand Jews armed with pistols, rifles and a few automatic weapons took on a reinforced Waffen-SS Panzergrenadier Brigade. Approximately 15 thousand Jews died during the uprising, most killed by being trapped in burning buildings. Officially the Germans suffered 100 casualties, although the Polish Resistance estimated the number was closer to 200. Some 50 thousand Jews were sent to the camps.

    History tells us that when civilians armed with small arms take on trained, well-equipped soldiers, the civilians lose.

  156. WharGarbl says

    @Ulysses
    #176

    History tells us that when civilians armed with small arms take on trained, well-equipped soldiers, the civilians lose.

    Pretty much.
    Most civilian “uprising” that worked, as far as I remember, was due to the military being sympathetic to their cause.

  157. says

    Most civilian “uprising” that worked, as far as I remember, was due to the military being sympathetic to their cause.

    And/or military aid from an outside power; I can’t think of a single armed revolution that succeeded without heavy military and financial aid from somewhere.

  158. WharGarbl says

    @Xaivius
    #175

    Hey, it’s working for the taliban insurgents!

    I know its snark. But in this case it “worked” in the sense that US is “hamstrung” by rule of engagement and the fact that, despite the sheer amount of civilian death we’re causing, we’re not supposed to cause them deliberately.
    It’s also working for the Taliban insurgents since the US objective, as far as I know, is not just “Wipe out the Taliban”, but it’s “Wipe out the Taliban without leveling the country they’re in.” (although we’re doing the “leveling” pretty well).

  159. WharGarbl says

    @Dalillama, Schmott Guy
    #178
    Very true. That’s not to say civilian uprising is useless. It is useful in the sense that it may garner sympathetic causes from other forces with the resource to fight.

  160. Xaivius (Formerly Robpowell, Acolyte of His Majesty Lord Niel DeGrasse Tyson I) says

    I know its snark. But in this case it “worked” in the sense that US is “hamstrung” by rule of engagement and the fact that, despite the sheer amount of civilian death we’re causing, we’re not supposed to cause them deliberately.
    It’s also working for the Taliban insurgents since the US objective, as far as I know, is not just “Wipe out the Taliban”, but it’s “Wipe out the Taliban without leveling the country they’re in.” (although we’re doing the “leveling” pretty well).
    –WharGarbl@179

    Well aware of the rules of engagement being a limiting factor (former Army Infantry), hence the snark. A very serious proposal in our unit for dealing with insurgents hiding in villages was to have the artillery just flatten the village. This was promptly shut down by the field-grades that actually had functioning brains.

  161. Azuma Hazuki says

    I don’t know what to think of this honestly. I hate the things, but the cities with very strict gun laws (Chicago, DC, NYC where I come from) are hotbeds of shooting homicides. The laws aren’t helping.

    It would be a more wise move to fix the culture and economy that leads desperate people to do desparate things, in my opinion, but we all know that’s not going to happen. I see guns as tools, albeit very dangerous ones, and my partial solution to this would be to mandate massive and frequent training courses for all gun owners. This would likely instill a sense of responsibility in more of them and make them feel more invested in their metallic penis extensions. Not sure what to do about the gangbangers though :(

  162. says

    Azuma:
    I’m sure someone will correct me if I am wrong, but I was under the impression that having strict gun laws in one city only results in guns being acquired outside that area. To be more effective, strict gun laws would need to be instituted state- or nation- wide. As we see in those countries with strict gun control and low gun violence.

  163. says

    I’m sure someone will correct me if I am wrong, but I was under the impression that having strict gun laws in one city only results in guns being acquired outside that area.

    See, here is your problem – logic. You are trying to use it. lol

    Other things that make you perfectly safe -

    1. Not allowing drugs in your own house, while your neighbor just started a Meth lab.
    2. Deciding to not live “in” the building where someone keeps bees, since you are deathly allergic, but assuming that “next door” will be safer.
    3. Being afraid of contaminants in drinking water, and drugs, so… going to Mexico to buy your prescriptions, and drinking a nice tall glass of iced tea, complete with contaminated ice, while waiting for them to fill it.
    4. In some of the most insane cases I have seen, having a “dry” town, five feet from a county line, where the other “town” on the opposite side has 20 liquor stores.
    Well, obviously you already get the point, but… will people like Azuma ever get it? Somehow, I don’t think so. They seem to think that a) there is some sort of “magic” force field that is supposed to prevent things that we don’t want from crossing out of places that they are easily, nay.. idiotically, available, into places you are not supposed to have them, and b) you can change the “culture” of something, without reducing the availability first, so that the distortions, assumptions, and false conclusions that *drive* the belief in the culture itself can be 1) successfully challenged, and 2) even questioned at all. Look at movies, for example, and tell me.. how many of them even try to give an honest account of what could be possible, in the case of a strong military apposing civilians, where the latter have no similar help? Like… **0**. No, instead, we get a remake of the absolutely idiotic “Red Dawn”, in which the military threat is so concerned about keeping people alive they don’t do the obvious, and just fire bomb the whole region, then move their own people in to replace them. Much easier than a) brainwashing people, or b) getting kicked around by a bunch of kids with what is, by comparison, pea shooters.

    I go back, again, to Alice in Deadland, **not** written by some gung ho American – (some spoilers, but only in terms of the relevant plot points to the whole, “a small group of badly armed people can hold off a government that really wants to kill them):

    While the hero keeps fighting, there is only two reasons this is possible – 1) they dictators needed the land to grow food, and people to function as slave labor for them, so they couldn’t just kill *everyone*, and 2) there are always more people who, finding out the truth, will fight, so long as someone survives to tell it. This did not, however, prevent them from both dropping incendiaries on locations they knew the rebels where hiding, killing nearly everyone she knew, and then, later, when they thought they had her captured, during a prisoner exchange, doing the same thing to the new group she had formed, while she was in no position to warn them, or later getting the new “president” of the colony to believe that they wanted a treaty, having him pull back their defenders, then trying to directly invade the new settlement (this time in a place not so easily obliterated), using their own “Red Queen”, and “volunteer” zombie soldiers (sent in to make it look like it was an attack by their own allies, and let the dictators spread more propaganda). At this point, the dictators hadn’t yet found, armed, or been in a position to just drop another nuke on them, instead, which they did, in the 4th book, to the city they “lost control of”.

    Frankly, the arguments about using guns for home defense isn’t much better. Yeah, sure.. you stop the unarmed, or equally armed, but.. what happens when they all know that everyone may be so armed, and that, thus, any house they want to break into needs the people in it to be dead, before they started stealing things, and that they will need to be well enough armed to hold off any cops, while escaping? Its called “escalation”. The only reason it has only happened among gangs, and between gangs and the cops, is because “most” of their other victims can be expected not to be armed. Arming everyone won’t stop crime, it will just make it more expensive, and end up replacing the current batch with someone more professional, and deadly, like you see in other parts of the world, or, like we had during prohibition.

    Are any of those people safer, in reality, or where we, back when it wasn’t some gang banger named Jose, but a mobster named Seagal, how about back even further, when everyone had guns, and you could even buy explosives with extreme ease, and the criminals where people like Billy the Kid?

    Azuma, and those like them, have to be completely clueless about historical contexts, to think that sane gun laws, better tracking and/or background checks, and at least some limitations on how many bullets they will fire, wouldn’t have some sort of reasonable reduction in certain crimes, or results from them, but ***only*** if they can’t just go, literally, next door, to buy the damn things instead.