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US Gun control


Walsingham

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I've been reading about Iran this morning, and also caught an article about gun control, and something struck me.

 

1. Nations that are large and disparate have a pronounced tendency to resort to authoritarianism in order to achieve political mobilism, and governmental action.

2. Authoritarianism can easily slide into dictatorship where there is no political 'long stop'.

3. One could argue - and as I say I am now convinced - that free gun ownership represents a (pretty weak, but still tangible) long stop.

4. Without this long stop the USA might have long ago descended into overt authoritarianism, and possibly dictatorship.

 

I have therefore changed my mind on gun control. That is despite the manifest problems it causes, and the bonkers qualities of many gun owners, a non-fascist US is worth it.

 

Having said this, I would emphatically reject the notion that handguns are of any use whatsoever in ensuring freedom. If people are to own weapons in order to fight, then they should be weapons of war.

 

I would also accept, given my thesis, that an alternative would be nullifying the size and disparate quality of the USA. But given this would lead to a MASSIVE global pwoer vacuum to be filled by the Russians and Chinese i don't think this is worthwhile.

"It wasn't lies. It was just... bull****"."

             -Elwood Blues

 

tarna's dead; processing... complete. Disappointed by Universe. RIP Hades/Sand/etc. Here's hoping your next alt has a harp.

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WOLVERINES

 

I think if you live in a society you feel gun ownership is necessary, then things have clearly already gone wrong.

There are none that are right, only strong of opinion. There are none that are wrong, only ignorant of facts

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In fairness to anyone just joining us I think it's worth pointing out that at this point I've been stuck in a chair almost continuously for nearly two months in a moderate amount of pain. So my change of heart could simply represent my desire to shoot passersby from the window as a means of alleviating the boredom. I only think I'm being rational.

"It wasn't lies. It was just... bull****"."

             -Elwood Blues

 

tarna's dead; processing... complete. Disappointed by Universe. RIP Hades/Sand/etc. Here's hoping your next alt has a harp.

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I'm all for gun ownership, as long as ammunition is outlawed.

But I guess then them gun-nuts, suffering from withdrawal, would simply go berserk after attaching the bayonets.

 

:lol: I have to agree with that..

 

But I've also, like Walsh, come the conclusion that big (100+ mill) countries are so fundamentally different that they need guns in order to properly scare their government. I don't really care how they deal with their internal security, but I don't want a big fascist or communistic country in either America or Asia - they might take a liking to our little corner of the world.

Fortune favors the bald.

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I'm not really against gun ownership, I think allowing 17 year olds to legally drive is 100x more lethal. I just think society has broken down if people feel they need to own a gun.

There are none that are right, only strong of opinion. There are none that are wrong, only ignorant of facts

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I've kind of changed my mind in the other direction lately, oddly enough.

 

GodDAMMIT! We can't just switch sides, you know? This is politics, not country-dancing.

"It wasn't lies. It was just... bull****"."

             -Elwood Blues

 

tarna's dead; processing... complete. Disappointed by Universe. RIP Hades/Sand/etc. Here's hoping your next alt has a harp.

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If we were starting over from scratch, I'd prefer a country with fewer guns in it. The costs of having lotsa guns are simply higher than the benefits.

 

But we're not starting from scratch, and attempting to shift to being a society with less gun ownership within our lifetimes would almost certainly be a complete disaster. The most practical path is to support the more marginal restrictions that are currently on the table (tougher rules in urban areas, licensing and such for handguns, limits on the heavier-firepower stuff), teach the next generation not to romanticize devices with no purpose but to make holes in human beings, and continue to laugh at the paranoid fantasies of wackos who expect George III to show up and start oppressing us the moment they flip the safety on their BFG9000 into the "on" position.

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If we were starting over from scratch, I'd prefer a country with fewer guns in it. The costs of having lotsa guns are simply higher than the benefits.

 

I have to wonder if I've made my case clear. I'm saying that it costs to have them loose in the system, but that the consequences of removing them would be far worse. You could argue that the mlitary cause all sorts of costs and problems - because they do - but a nation without them is worse off.

"It wasn't lies. It was just... bull****"."

             -Elwood Blues

 

tarna's dead; processing... complete. Disappointed by Universe. RIP Hades/Sand/etc. Here's hoping your next alt has a harp.

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I'm not a fan of guns, in fact I kind of despise them. But I live out in the country and I would be stupid not to have one around. Nt only do we have coyotes and boar, we have people that wander on to our property to steal stuff because they think no one lives on the property. Given the Sheriff response time is around 10 to 15 minutes, a couple warning shots are the most effective deterrent.

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I've kind of changed my mind in the other direction lately, oddly enough.

 

GodDAMMIT! We can't just switch sides, you know? This is politics, not country-dancing.

lol

 

No really, I don't see gun ownership being a bulwark against totalitarianism. Not even a bad one.

Na na  na na  na na  ...

greg358 from Darksouls 3 PVP is a CHEATER.

That is all.

 

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If we were starting over from scratch, I'd prefer a country with fewer guns in it. The costs of having lotsa guns are simply higher than the benefits.

 

I have to wonder if I've made my case clear. I'm saying that it costs to have them loose in the system, but that the consequences of removing them would be far worse. You could argue that the mlitary cause all sorts of costs and problems - because they do - but a nation without them is worse off.

I think we just disagree on the weighting of the benefits and costs. Viewed in the abstract, I would prefer the end result with less gun ownership. But given that America is already a state with very high gun ownership, and that the transition from a highly-armed society to one with more restricted gun rights would be rather disastrous if attempted at a speed measured in units of time shorter than human lifespans, as a "what to do now" policy proposal, it's a non-starter to me.

 

 

Can we think of historical analogues? When has an armed populace served as an effective preventative check against the rise of totalitarianism? There are certainly examples of the overthrow of existing totalitarian and colonial regimes, but I think of that as a different animal. Most attempts I can think of either fail (the Republicans in the Spanish Civil War) or simply lead to a different kind of totalitarianism (Cromwell replacing Charles I; the Bolsheviks).

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For those of you who are so anti-gun, let me ask you these questions. Do you think that a country removing all guns out of the hands of its citizens will also include those bent on crime? Do you think that will stop all death by guns? Do you think those in government will be without firearms? Do you think that the black markets will suddenly disappear? And maybe most important, do you think that all who own guns are criminals? How about this, do you think that those who don't own guns are incapable of committing a crime? I truly would like to see these answered.

 

For my own part I know that disarming the law-abiding citizens will only make them vulnerable to take over. Having guns is what keeps the people having some control on their lives and freedoms. Again, without them we become 'sitting ducks'. Think of what that means please.

 

Let me also ask a hypothetical question. If you, or you and your family, were suddenly in a serious life threatening situation from armed criminals and you had an equal chance to either seek refuge with an anti-gun establishment, or one where you know the occupants were well armed and waiting to give you aid, which would you run to?

 

I think that a lot of you have only looked at the fact that 'guns kill'. Yes they do. But guns also 'save lives'. I've said it before, and I'll say it again.... we've owned guns for generations and not one incident of accidental shooting, or death because of it. Yet owning a gun has saved the life of more than one of us. My father would not be alive today if he hadn't been armed while working a night job years ago. He is not a violent man, but there are those who would do violence for the sake of violence to him or any of us. You can't change those people.

 

Personally, I think most people who own handguns keep them because they kill. The very likely threat of death is what keeps the criminal at bay. So the criminal chooses to prey on the defenseless, just like many animals do. It's why the weasel, the perfect little killing machine, doesn't attack a wolf or wildcat for instance. He doesn't have a chance in hell against them. And a well armed person is suddenly about as invulnerable to a criminal as the wolf is to the weasel.

 

I won't even go hiking unless I know someone in our group is armed. And it isn't the wild animals I am cautious of. I won't ride my horse on long trail rides, or go camping or any of that stuff without being armed. We have never had to resort to using one, but there is peace of mind knowing that you can defend yourself if the situation ever arose.

 

Maybe some of you are open-minded enough to at least look at the other side of gun-ownership, and truly see it without pre-judgments clouding your view.

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^ Calm down, most people on this thread have been exceedingly open-minded about firearms ownership. I was just suggesting that perhaps we should draw the line at anti-aircraft guns or .50 cal machineguns. Or does that make me some sort of Volvo-driving hippy?

sonsofgygax.JPG

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I've kind of changed my mind in the other direction lately, oddly enough.

 

GodDAMMIT! We can't just switch sides, you know? This is politics, not country-dancing.

Well I still don't think there's any sort of pressing need for gun control and I have lots of guns, but I don't think they're somehow extremely important to protect our society. The two extremes I can't tolerate are the people who say Canada is a horrible despotic nation because they restrict handguns, or the people who think, say, England would become wildly dangerous if they allowed people to own handguns or use them in self-defense. Both extremes are hyperbolic nonsense.

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As Gun-person above rightly suggests, the correlation between strict firearms ownership and incidences of firearms crime isn't consistent. You can have strict firearms laws yet a fair bit of firearm-enabled crime. Conversely, everybody in the country can have an assault rifle and almost no firearm-enabled crime (q.v. Switzerland).

 

But this thread is about the notion of a load of firearms-toting citizens staving off oppression. I'm undecided.

 

Here in the UK, if everybody is hacked off with something there is a 200-year old tradition of the Mob descending on central London for a ruck with the forces of law and order. No guns allowed, Queensbury rules (truncheons, bricks, etc). After that everybody harrumphs for a bit in Parliament and the law gets changed (Poll Tax, for example).

 

It's not perfect, but it's better than armed insurrection I suppose.

sonsofgygax.JPG

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^ Calm down, most people on this thread have been exceedingly open-minded about firearms ownership. I was just suggesting that perhaps we should draw the line at anti-aircraft guns or .50 cal machineguns. Or does that make me some sort of Volvo-driving hippy?

 

I was asking questions. I asked because I want to know. Please don't assume my emotion for me.

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As Gun-person above rightly suggests, the correlation between strict firearms ownership and incidences of firearms crime isn't consistent. You can have strict firearms laws yet a fair bit of firearm-enabled crime. Conversely, everybody in the country can have an assault rifle and almost no firearm-enabled crime (q.v. Switzerland).

 

But this thread is about the notion of a load of firearms-toting citizens staving off oppression. I'm undecided.

 

Here in the UK, if everybody is hacked off with something there is a 200-year old tradition of the Mob descending on central London for a ruck with the forces of law and order. No guns allowed, Queensbury rules (truncheons, bricks, etc). After that everybody harrumphs for a bit in Parliament and the law gets changed (Poll Tax, for example).

 

It's not perfect, but it's better than armed insurrection I suppose.

Somewhat ironically, the American 2nd Amendment was largely a response to British history-- the Stuart monarchs' various attempts to disarm the local militias in regions that didn't support their rule.

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Enoch certainly makes a keen edged point about the results of citizen uprisings. Mob rising tends to be followed by mob rule, and mob rule is as much fun as it sounds*. As for Monte's point about unarmed civilian uprising there may be something to it. But Britain is - despite what comedians tell us - a very homogenous place. We are broadly united in what we will and won't stand, even if we disagree on many issues of policy.

 

I would suggest that an armed citizenry is rather like a nuclear deterrent. But only in so far as it it becomes redundant as soon as it is put into action. It works best because it is an unspoken challenge to authority.

 

Finally, Gina, I cannot agree that a civilised society should rely on lethal force resting in the hands of individuals for its justice/law enforcement. At the point where that happens then things have gone horribly wrong. If ordinary people were capable of exercising lethal force sensibly then we would not need to train either police officers or soldiers so carefully.

 

 

*Thought: I wonder if flash mob rule would be more terrifying?

"It wasn't lies. It was just... bull****"."

             -Elwood Blues

 

tarna's dead; processing... complete. Disappointed by Universe. RIP Hades/Sand/etc. Here's hoping your next alt has a harp.

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I don't think ridding ourselves of guns is a good idea, but not because of the "defense" argument. I use mine on a weekly basis for sport shooting. I have never and don't plan to ever point my guns at any living being. I don't see how owning them is a danger to anyone.

Hey now, my mother is huge and don't you forget it. The drunk can't even get off the couch to make herself a vodka drenched sandwich. Octopus suck.

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I agree, but draw the distinction between guns and Guns (i.e. small arms versus fully auto military hardware)
Aren't most gun-related deaths in the US from small calibers, though? I'm not saying that a ban on .22 LR and unrestricted ownership for AAA platforms is the way to go, but come on, how concealable is a Browning .50 MG?

- When he is best, he is a little worse than a man, and when he is worst, he is little better than a beast.

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