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Monday, January 14, 2013

If They Take Away Our Guns, Then What?


Summer's End. Lexington Green, 11 September 20...
Summer's End. Lexington Green, 11 September 2002. Photo taken in Minute Man National Historical Park. Sculpture : "Minuteman" by sculptor Henry Hudson Kitson (1863-1947), dedicated April 19, 1900. Erected 1899 : SIRIS (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
         I'm sure that many of you are getting sick and tired of the gun control issue, but since it's going to continue to be in the news and a topic of many posts on other blogs I thought I'd wrap up my discussion that began on my previous post.   I encourage you to check out that post if you missed it and be sure to read through the comments.  There were some very good points made on both sides.  My commenters are some of the best.

        In  today's post I must admit to being a bit lazy as well as a bit haphazard.   The information to follow is an excerpt from one of those forwarded emails of dubious origin.  These "facts" sound credible in some cases and possible in others.  I researched some of these tidbits without spending hours to do so and as with any internet search of controversial topics I found a plethora of evidence proving as well as debunking these.  Let's face it, sometimes the internet is totally wacky.

       To preserve my own credibility I will neither say yea nor nay to any of these, but I do believe if not true there is a semblance of truth to all of these.  This piece may have originated with Paul Harvey on Monday, November 6, 2000 according to some sources.  For those of you who accept as the gospel of fact-checking, they have not yet determined the veracity of the information.    I invite you to tell us what you know about these "facts" or provide other similar examples.

Some Facts on Gun Control

In 1929, the Soviet Union established gun control. From 1929 to 1953,
about 20 million dissidents, unable to defend themselves, were rounded up and exterminated.

In 1911, Turkey established gun control.. From 1915 to 1917,
1.5 million Armenians, unable to defend themselves, were rounded up and exterminated.

Germany established gun control in 1938 and from 1939 to 1945,
a total of 13 million Jews and others who were unable to defend themselves were rounded up and exterminated.

China established gun control in 1935. From 1948 to 1952,
20 million political dissidents, unable to defend themselves, were rounded up and exterminated

Guatemala established gun control in 1964. From 1964 to 1981,
100,000 Mayan Indians, unable to defend themselves, were rounded up and exterminated.

Uganda established gun control in 1970. From 1971 to 1979, 300,000 Christians, unable to defend themselves, were rounded up and exterminated.

Cambodia established gun control in 1956. From 1975 to 1977, one million educated’ people, unable to defend themselves, were rounded up and exterminated.

Defenseless people rounded up and exterminated in the 20th Century because of gun control: 56 million.

         So what do you think?

What Others Have Been Saying:

       If you are interested in reading some other opinions from bloggers, here are a few to check out:

Matt Conlon did a good post on the topic of gun control at Gun Control Is Being Able to Hit Your Target.  

Andrew Leon looks at the other side of the argument at Strange Pegs

Larry Cavanaugh also tackles the topic at Discconnected 

Chuck has his say at Apocalypse Now.

Stephen T McCarthy has also done his own post on the topic at Ferret Faced Fascist Friends.

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  1. I saw Larry's comment last week and read both Chuck's and Andrew's posts. There was someone else who posted about Australia and what happened when they took away the guns there - crime went up.

  2. Liberals are dancing in the blood of those children slayed at Newtown. It's sickening. There wasn't all this activism after the shooting in the theater at Aurora was there? Why? It was before the election. Newtown happened after the election and so now they can use it to further their agenda without worrying about Obama getting re-elected. He said himself he would have more flexibility after the election. Libs have always been for gun control and this is a dream come true for them.

  3. Most interesting to read, though I don't know much on the subject of guns.


  4. Thanks for putting up those horrific stats. I just don't understand how anyone can be FOR gun control. Why doesn't the gov round up the criminals guns first? Control the bad guys, not the good guys.

  5. We are NRA members and have a hunting rifle. We love venison. However, should someone break in we have a hunting rifle. It's in the constitution for us to own arms. If they are outlawed, we will just find other ways to kill each other.
    I stick with "Guns don't kill people, PEOPLE kill people." And if guns are outlawed, only outlaws will have guns. I missed your previous post and comments, but I'm sure it was a great discussion. You have a way of getting those going that I really like, Lee.

    Tina @ Life is Good
    Co-host, April 201 A-Z Challenge

  6. 56 million - that might be a little on the high side.

    The more regulations and control the government places on us, the more things seem to spin out of control.

  7. Alex -- If this battle of gun rights goes into the houses of legislation, I'm sure we'll be hearing a whole lot more on the topic.

    Downsizers-- I heard this point made before the election. I'm quite sure you are correct about this.

    Yvonne -- Guns are not for everybody and that's part of the problem we're looking at now. Guns in the right hands.

    Em -- I wish there was an easy solution like just rounding up criminals with guns. Unfortunately it's not going to be that easy.

    Tina -- Unfortunately the debate is divided between those who understand the gun issue on one side and and those who don't. Then there is a divide between those who want to see the populace controlled and vulnerable to oppression and those who want to preserve the liberty of individuals and communities. Right now it's a war of words--let's hope it doesn't come down to something worse.


  8. L.Diane -- The 56 million may be high, but it depends on the factors used to obtain that figure. The more laws in place, the more "criminals" that are created.


  9. It's unfortunate that the NRA has the lead in defending gun rights. Their voice has been diminished over the years because they have not spoken effectively. Then there are others who jump in with arguments that have little more validity than those advanced by anti-gun lobbyists.

    This blog posting is one of the few to focus on the real issue at hand: Our inherent right to defend ourselves.
    The anti-gun lobbyists can only respond: "Do you really expect a holocaust to occur in America?" How absurd that sounds.

    Actually, yes, a holocaust could occur in America just as it did in the other places listed in this posting. Would Obama, Pelosi, or Reid be the architects of a holocaust? Probably not. But in attacking our right to defend ourselves, they could lay the foundations of a holocaust.

    Anti-gun lobbyists, in attempting to gain a partial victory, often struggle to limit our right to possess guns to certain classes. What do we need a military-type of weapon for? Well, to fight a military that is sent to take away other rights. It's that simple.

    Funny, one of the countries that was not mentioned in this posting is Sweden. A recent survey categorizes it as "the happiest place to live" on earth. Interesting. Every home there is required to have a machine gun and ammunition for it. Every citizen (withing specified parameters) is expected to muster in defense of the nation if attacked.

  10. Interesting facts Lee about gun control although they haven't helped me sway my decision, I still don't know which way I feel about it in all seriousness but this is a great well balanced argument, I could read a part three so part two is actually no bother.

  11. NPR was reporting on a new study recently that shows that freedom in a society is directly tied to wealth. Basically, the more wealthy the society or individual, the more freedom that society or individual demands. They were looking at what could be happening in China because of the rise of the wealthy middle class.

    Just as a note, The Berlin wall and the USSR both fell with full gun control in effect, so, clearly, freedom is not dependent upon guns.

    By the way, many of your "facts" are non-related to causality. They sound good when lumped together but actually have no relationship to each other. They are completely unrelated to any kind of science and would not be admitted as evidence in court because they don't qualify as circumstantial.

  12. I don't think gun control means taking guns away, just controlling the kinds of guns the average American can purchase. There is no need for any private citizen to own an assault rifle or any weapon that has the potential of killing dozens of people in a burst of seconds. I do think, however, that we should retain our right to defend ourselves. All weapons should be classified, much the same way drugs are. Some weapons should only be permitted to the troops and possibly the police, like certain drugs are only used by licensed physicians. Assault weapons would be classified like any opiate. Having said that, if someone really wants to do harm and use whatever weapon they have in mind, they will find a way. But we make it as difficult as possible. Some will be deterred by that effort. And that equals lives saved. It's worth it.

  13. I rarely return to discussion threads. It makes me sound argumentative. But, a couple of postings following my first one have inspired me to respond.

    To Andrew, let me say that the USSR and the Berlin Wall did fall to guns, ours. After unsuccessfully attempting to cope with an agressor (the USSR) through "containment" and then "detente", we began arming to defend ourselves against them and their economy collapsed as they attempted to match us. Secondly, NPR reporting that freedom is linked to wealth is a hoot. Of course they would report that. The fact is that freedom only became dependent on wealth as Americans began to pretend that freedom was granted by government. Thus, the wealthy could "afford more freedom" by influencing government with their wealth. Before the progressive movement began in the late 19th Century, no one thought this way. Freedom was a "natural right" that government was not supposed to infringe upon (it says so in the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution).

    To Nancy, let me say that I have already addressed the issue of banning just "certain types of weapons". If you concede that I have a right to defend myself, then you must agree that I have a right to acquire and keep the best tools with which to defend myself. Interestingly, the anti-gun lobby frequently argues that the Second Amendment was crafted in a time when civilians had muskets and maybe that is all we should be entitled to have. However, in that time the military also had muskets. Thus, private citizens has weapons equal to the military. Why should that no be so today. If an American tyrant attempts to infringe on our rights, we may reasonably expect to enforce their laws on us using the military. Hopefully, the military will honor its oath to preserve, protect, and defend the Constitution. If they don't, I don't want to defend myself with a musket against their modern weapons of war.

  14. Again, Lee, I am impressed by the level of discussion today. You literary types are dissidents at heart!

    Also, kudos on your research-I knew of Russia and Germany but not the others.

    And while I do not want to discount Andrew and Nancy's opinions, I still would caution everyone to study the past to learn what may happen if you are too quick to give away your rights.

    Jack has said everything I would say better than I could say it, but let me add one thing (that I may have said the other day so if I repeat myself, I apologize).

    The people have had guns for two hundred plus years.

    These mass shootings are a relatively recent phenomenon.

    Could it be that the problem lies elsewhere?

    Our culture has gotten more violent over my lifetime.

    "The Wild Bunch" was considered an extremely violent film when released, and now that level of graphic violence is common on television-far too tame for Hollywood.

    My father was appalled at the violence on the television shows I watched in high school (Vega$, Charlie's Angels, etc), and those shows are less violent than the current crop of children's cartoons.

    While I am not advocating we ban violent programming, I think if you looked at what we put in our eyes and ears, you'd be closer to the root cause than what is being put in our hands.

    For what is a weapon compared to the hand that wields it (to quote James Earl Jones-I already know that Alex knows the movie I'm paraphrasing).


  15. I agree with Jack about well... everything. Moving on...

    It was on my blog that Alex read about Australia. They went through a gun ban. The video below is of a News Report about how well that is NOT working out. It is interviews from police, citizens, and all of the stats on crime since the ban. And the news is all BAD. The criminals are winning because they are now the only ones with the guns, the police can't keep up, and ALL houses are now seen as SOFT TARGETS because they took everyone's guns away.

    Before the ban, the criminals thought twice because they didn't know who did and did not have a gun. Now they know that only THEY have the guns. It is a war in Australia, and the criminals are winning. Take note, Americans. There are simply not enough police. The citizens are on their own and they are now unarmed. It is AN EPIC FAIL. This is what a gun ban looks like:

    And in gun news here: The New York newspaper, Journal News, decided that it was their obligation to print the names and addresses of legal gun owners in their paper. Yep. Names and addresses of registered gun owners. What happened? The criminals saw that as the opportunity that it was to break in and steal guns, so that they could later use those guns in the commission of crimes. Those people became targets for home invasions. How was this justified? Because it was the "right thing to do" because of the tragedy in Newtown. Targeting thousands of people for home invasions was the RIGHT THING TO DO???? Seriously.

    Judge Pirro had something to say to that and I back her play:

    Arguments can be made that words get people killed. Does that mean that words should be banned? Newspapers no longer be printed? Should there be a ban on the written word? After all someone once said, "The pen is mightier than the sword." Or in this modern age... the gun. Or should there be some responsibility that goes hand in hand with the writing? Ah, do I see some dawning of common sense? Be your weapon a pen or a gun, it must be handled responsibly. Neither one does a lick of damage on its own. It only has any power when someone picks it up.

  16. Jack -- Many of the possibilities resultant from gun control can be pretty logically deduced, but as is typical of many liberal causes the feelings are what are promoted most strongly and feelings have more immediacy for most people. Reasoning is not at play in the gun control argument. The Swedish model is a good example and there are others.

    Yeamie -- I don't plan on a part 3 of this issue, but I have several more posts coming on related topics.

    Andrew-- There is probably as much or more enslavement related to wealth as there is freedom. There is an illusion of more freedom to those who have wealth, but there is also dependency. I think this was part of the point that Jesus was making to the rich man. I'm not really sure about causal relationships between any of these "facts"--there might be, but the results are related I think.

    Nancy -- In my last post I discussed the idea of parity of weaponry. If our government fell into the wrong hands the people should have something close to what the forces in the street have in order to make for an equal fight. There would never be absolute parity in weaponry, but a force of insurrection would at least have a chance. Your point about those intent on mayhem finding a way to do it no matter what is the real problem as far as weapon possession.

    Jack-- Thank you for the added points. Nothing for me to add to that.

    Larry -- Thank you for your complimentary tone toward the commenters. I think they are all great no matter which side they take--it makes for good discussion. As I said in my post, I'll take little credit for any research other than my attempt to find the truth in the "facts". We've got a lot to think about here. And yes, movies and TV have become violent to sometimes absurd and gratuitous lengths, and that includes some of my favorite films.

    Robin -- Great comment and thank you for the links and updates. I saw some of the gun owners who were outed by the press in a TV discussion last night.


  17. Another interesting post, with some great comments.

    A few things I would add. I appreciate Mr. Durish’s comments and his concise and precise manner of presentation. I agree with him wholeheartedly, but I would add that it is my opinion and the opinion of many Native Americans that a Holocaust has already been carried out on American soil. There are other ethnic and religious groups that have been targeted and threatened with extermination, to the extent that they fled the country. They would probably also consider this a Holocaust, of sorts. Much of this taking place, as far back as the nineteenth century.

    I appreciate your warning us, that the facts have NOT been thoroughly checked. I would suggest that most of them could probably be checked through a simple examination of history texts used in the schools today. Except now children are taught that the Pilgrims came to American for the ‘good soil’ as opposed to fleeing ‘religious persecution’. The cause of wars and their start is distorted to the extent that some appear to be mere misunderstanding where no one was really at fault. And, my favorite, the Viet Nam War/Conflict/Police Action (take your pick) is almost completely ignored, as though it never happened. (Probably promoted by the same folks who insist that the Holocaust in Germany never took place. Tell that to my ancestors.) At least these are some of the examples of things taught to my children in various school districts covering several states.

    All of that is extraneous to the issue of ‘gun control’. At your last posting someone said this is not so much about ‘gun control’ as it is ‘people control. I couldn’t agree more. What I see this issue truly being about is FREEDOM and exactly how much of it are we going to let be taken away and how much are we simply willing to hand over. I sincerely hope the issue of ‘gun control’ and ultimately ‘gun confiscation’ will be the LAST STRAW for the vast majority of freedom loving Americans.

    For those of you who don’t like guns, are afraid of them, and or simply never want to own one; I bet your hoping that if it ever came to any kind of ‘real fight’ in your neighborhood, no matter who the bad guys prove to be, you friends and neighbors, maybe even me, would be willing to defend you with ours.

  18. Farawayeyes is correct. The massacre at Wounded Knee is another excellent example of gun confiscation preceding a "holocaust". Anyone who would place their lives in the hands of the U.S. government need only look to the treatment of native Americans to see how well that works.

  19. This issue certainly has more shades of gray than black or white. I don't think there are any easy answers, but I do think the world has to keep working to keep the guns out of the hands of people who can't use them responsibly. Not sure how though...

  20. Here is the full nut on this post:

    Gun Control = Population Control

    I can see where this is going...

    Thanks Lee!

  21. Faraway Eyes-- Revisionist history can be a problem especially if it leads us to make poor choices that will have bad effects for the future.

    Jack -- The treatment of Native Americans and slavery are two big blots on the pages of American history. We should learn something from those episodes.

    Jemi -- It's certainly not the guns, it's the people. How do we solve the problems of people?

    Chuck -- Something Machiavellian perhaps. A sinister ruse of conspiratorial groups who want to control the world. Sure, I'll accept something along those lines.


  22. Well, I'm glad to see there is some intelligent discussion about this issue of gun control. I threw the topic out there a few weeks ago without much response, and I'm not surprised. Some relatives visited us about a week ago and were appalled at how often we turned on the TV to watch the news. News? It's too depressing, so why bother with it? Whatever happens, happens, and there's not much we can do about it. Really? I guess they never heard of Edmund Burke and what he had to say about that subject: "All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men do nothing."

  23. Lee, Between both of your posts there has been such an interesting discussion that you could probably continue with it as an A to Z theme. For example A could be restricting Assault weapons and so on. I still like Nancy's idea.

  24. Being and Englishwoman who emigrated to Canada, I have always lived with gun control. None of us feel the need to 'bear arms' - crime happens in both countries, but we are not shivering in our shoes with our guns handy expecting someone to break in. The US gives the impression that you are all living in fear. I know its not so having lived in NC for 12 years, but that's the impression you give the rest of the world.

  25. Jo: I have three points to make in response to your posting.

    Fear comes when you're riding on a train, in a box car, crammed together with your family and friends, and then being herded into gas chambers. Fear comes when the Cossacks ride into your village with guns and sabers, raping and murdering at will, and you have no way of defending yourself. Fear comes when criminals burst through the door to your home, abusing you, raping and murdering with impunity (as they are in England and Australia) because homes are now soft targets. I'm not afraid. I'm armed, Even when our cities and counties go bankrupt and there are fewer police to respond, I will be armed.

    Secondly, how fearful would the world be it the most powerful armed forces belonged to any other nation than the United States? Of course you may respond that you don't want any nation to possess such power. But then, do you think that no tyrant would rise to take advantage of that situation?

    Finally, I'm an American, born and bred. I really don't give a damn what the rest of the world thinks. Truthfully, I don't think they care what others think of them as well.

  26. Walk2write -- Media news is incidental information that I must supplement with some alternative sources in order to get the fuller picture. It can be depressing, sure, it depends on perspective.

    Julie -- One certainly could use the topic for the A to Z Challenge, but not for me--would you like to take on that one? The discussion has been excellent I agree.

    Jo -- I don't live in any fear, but I see a reality of a potential threat coming from many quarters. The rest of the world may see us as paranoid or whatever, but I think there are many who have appreciated our coming to help in times of real threats like we did in WWII. Of course, we've done our fair share of meddling that has had little positive benefit that has been evident.

    Jack - You've just made the point that I was trying to make with a much softer approach. Your method was far more effective than mine. Thank you.


  27. One last point I wanted to make in regards to the big discussion over at Andrew Leon's blog is Prohibition. Yeah, that turned out to be a GREAT idea. Solved everything! And that's just another example of why I think the premise of just taking away everyone's right to own a gun is a terrible, terrible idea.

  28. Lee,

    Gun control in the Britain.

    58 Murders a Year by Firearms in Britain, 8,775 in US

  29. Drat! I keep getting sucked back into this. I have important work to do, but what is more important than keeping this discussion honest?

    "58 murders a year by firearms in Britain, 8,775 in the US"

    And? The truth is that such statistics are thrown out to make a point, but they are irrelevant. Compare the murder rate to get a truer comparison. How many murders per 100,000 people. Great Britain - .07 US - 4.2. Significant until you begin to compare murder rates by firearms in metropolitan areas where most occur. They are far more similar but there are many more major metropolitan areas in the US which accounts for most of the difference.

    How about comparing the incidence of crimes prevented because intended victims are able to defend themselves with firearms? Of course, there is no comparison. That is not legal in Great Britain. Indeed, victims who attempt to defend themselves with firearms are likely to go to prison.

    Be careful when using statistics. They may come back to bite you.

  30. I saw an interesting little Facebook meme about the slaughter of Native Americans after they were disarmed, as well. And that one's in America, land of "Right to Bear Arms." Never thought about those massacres in this context, and haven't researched it, but it's one more detail to add to the plethora of others.

    Shannon at The Warrior Muse

  31. Tony -- Is there any example of a prohibition that did work completely? The drug war certainly has been a big waste.

    Gary -- Impressive stats that have been oft repeated in the media, yet statistics do not always tell the story but merely manipulate it to get desired results.

    Jack-- You are so funny. Can't keep a good man down, eh? I appreciate your returns to back me up with more substantial evidence and argument. I rarely trust statistics. They can be interesting to cite, but they don't provide absolute proof.

    Shannon - Of course we all know that the indigenous people of North America had no right to bear arms since they weren't really Americans. Seriously though, the Native Americans became political pawns and learned a lot from the Europeans. They fought for survival but gained an edge when they attained some parity of weaponry.


  32. What do I think? I think you can make statistics prove anything. All those dissidents rounded up and exterminated is a tragedy - no question. BUT I have just seen some of a programme on TV with a man and his father running a gun dealership in US, and one of the ways their employees "enjoyed themselves" was to shoot a Tommy gun at a life-size cutout of their boss. They fell about laughing. They thought it was fun. I think it's sick. Bring kids up in a gun culture and when one of them goes off the rails, with guns far too readily available, it's a major tragedy.

  33. Very thoughtful and well-put-together posts. Gun violence is tragic, but the problem goes much deeper. Each decision made, no matter what it is, will have consequences. The entire problem needs to be addressed in order to make a difference - not just the gun-control part.

  34. Yeah, it's me again. But these links just came to me. Believe it or not, there are discussions about gun control going on all over the place and this is one of the saner ones I've seen.!

  35. Lizy -- The mentality issues are of concern and need to be addressed. Our society can be a bit flippant about attitudes toward violent behavior. But "gun culture" is probably not the real problem; it's probably more of a respect toward others and the law problem.

    Carol -- I think you a very correct about this assessment.

    Jack-- The topic is everywhere because the lawmakers are threatening to infringe upon our 2nd Amendment rights and a lot of people are concerned on one side of the fence and the touchy feeling crowd is on the other side just prattling without much logical reasoning. I think we'll be hearing about this for a good while to come. I check those links.


  36. There is just as much prattling on on the "concerned" side and just as much knee-jerk, touchy feeling crap without any logic to back it up. I'm sorry, but to say that an assault weapon ban is an "infringement" upon your 2nd amendment right is total crap and without logic.

    Again I'm going to ask this question, because you didn't answer it last time:
    When you boil all of this down to its simplest form, the question is this:
    Do we sacrifice our children now (because, yes, to allow gun violence to continue the way it is is to say that the death of children is worth it to you) to the current unstable people with guns in order stave off some highly unlikely possibility OR do we protect our children now and deal with the results later?

    Lee, are you willing to sacrifice your children and your grand children to gun violence? If you can not say it is worth it to you, that YOU are not willing to give your grandchildren over to be shot in a massacre, then it is NOT right of you to ask it of other people. And THAT is what you are asking in the position that you take.

    You are saying, "It is it worth it to me that YOUR (or MY) children will DIE to gun violence to insure that we get to keep our assault weapons."

    Really? Is that what you're saying? Because it's what you're saying.

  37. Andrew: A very impassioned plea, but it depends upon the premise that the existence of assault weapons has a significant impact on our childrens survivability. Where is there any evidence to support that premise?

    If I could find anything to support it, I would be there right beside you. However, my research (and I have been spending a lot of time on this) shows now causal link. Indeed, there is evidence to the contrary.

  38. You are saying, "It is it worth it to me that YOUR (or MY) children will DIE to gun violence to insure that we get to keep our assault weapons."

    No, this is not what I'm saying. I think you may be engaging in some fallacious reasoning to support your argument.

    The guns are inanimate objects that do not cause anything in their existence. It's the intent and mindset of the people behind the guns. Who are the people who are the cause of the type of acts to which you refer? Crazies and criminals and therein lies the problem that in reality must be addressed. The rights laid out by the 2nd Amendment have little or nothing to do with the wack element of the evil fringe society.

    To address the concerns you are posing we need to go to other realms that don't have anything to do with gun control. To use an analogy, if there were suddenly an epidemic of terror, mass homicide, and chaos caused by madmen driving vehicles into crowds and buildings where there many fatalities would we ban the vehicles or limit their size or speed?

    My posts on gun control are merely a prelude to some of the real problems or potential problems as I see them. These posts are the introduction to a series that I proposed when I posted my post of December 17th. Gun control is a huge topic in the news currently as you well now and I'm taking advantage of that in order to launch a series of other posts.

    But to answer your question, I don't want to sacrifice anybody's life to gun violence, but I'd like to see all violence prevented or at least curbed. I think I know the answers in part and I don't think it involves banning legal ownership of things that criminals and others with evil intent have in their possession.

    The lessons taught by history go far beyond what we hear in today's news and the reactions to that news.


  39. Look, I understand that there are other issues at stake, but, say, when they put in someone in the hospital who is at risk of suicide, the first thing they do is take away -all- of the instruments with which they could commit suicide. After that, they work on the problem and slowly re-introduce those items previously taken away. This situation going on right now is that same situation. We have to take away the tools with which society id using to kill itself in order to work on the problem.
    That's all there is to it. You can't solve the problem while the person is trying to shoot himself in the head. You have to take away the gun first.

  40. Andrew -- I agree with your scenario of the person on suicide watch. You take away the instruments of potential harm away from that specific person and not everyone else who doesn't share the problem.

    In the same way, if a soldier goes on rampage and kills a bunch of innocent civilians they take away that soldier's weapon and hold him for trial, but you don't take away weapons from all members of the military for fear that they might do something similarly bad.

    Or when a cop is involved in a shooting that involves a death they will put that officer on leave or in a desk job position, but they don't suspend the entire force.

    The vast majority of legal gun owners are probably highly responsible individuals who take great precautions in their gun ownership. Otherwise the streets would be absolute mayhem beyond what is already coming from the gangs and criminals. The responsible citizenry has the right to be armed and armed with parity of force.

    I intend to let this gun issue go and address some further topics that I think are ultimately the real answer.

    By the way, after my recent posts, you might be surprised to know where I personally actually stand on the gun issue.

    Thanks for the great interchange.


  41. Are you saying that if the US takes away their guns then the US governement will round up all the pro gun citizens and have them exterminated? I think not. The smple fact of the matter is that if you take away the guns, less gun crim e is committed. The statistics from around the world are there for all to see regarding deaths involving guns.

    The problem is of course that there are so many guns in the US that it would be impossible to control them effectively. Your country is a victim of its own constitution here and that is unfortunate. The other point and perhaps the other side of the argument is that most gun crime is committed with guns that are owned LEGALLY and bought through proper means, so who is at fault here, the owners fro allowing guns to be readily available or the federal or state government for not ensuring that proper checks are carried out. Its certainly a hard issue to fix, if it ever will be.

  42. Arlee, you say earlier on "but I think there are many who have appreciated our coming to help in times of real threats like we did in WWII."

    I hate it when Americans talk this way about WWII like you saved the world. The US had NO interest in the war or helping others in Europe until Japan nailed Pearl Harbour. It was only THEN that you realised that YOU were vunerable and got involved. If Pearl Harbour had never happened I wonder how the war would have turned out. I'm not saying that the Us' involvement in the war didnt turn the tide, it obviously did. I just hate that "we're so f**king great" attitude that the US has about itself. Also, in response to Jack - do you really think that people come into homes every second of the day and rape and murder people like its a scene out of A Clockwork Orange? how ill informed you are.

  43. This is not a response to sdk_2010. Anonymous posters always try to derail discussions with off hand insults and personal attacks. Rather, I've been thinking that this discussion is the type of thing Washington is hoping for.

    Y'all realize that the gun control issue is just a side show, a diversion. The real danger to our children is that the clowns in Washington and many of our State houses are enslaving them to a future of bankruptcy by their spending. Of course, the President and key members of Congress dismiss this concern. You've heard them, haven't you? "There is no spending problem," they proclaim and then attack our Second Amendment rights knowing that it is a hot button issue on both sides. Now think about this: How safe will our children be when our cities and counties, states and even the federal government are bankrupt, and there aren't enough police and fire personnel to respond to calls for help. We better have guns then, and volunteer militia who can man the fire pumps as well as the front lines, a gun in one hand and a fire ax in the other. Don't believe me? You won't have to wait long. There are many cities and counties in California preparing bankruptcy filings. Michigan is contemplating the fall of Detroit.

  44. sdk_2010 -- Thank you for taking time to stop by to comment. I don't have much more to add to what you've said. Well I do, but I won't.

    Jack --Your response works for me. Thanks.


  45. downsizer
    I'm a liberal and I live in Connecticut, about 40 miles from Newtown.

    When I read notes like yours, I am sick at heart. How on earth can we (meaning liberals, conservatives and everyone else)reach any sort of understanding or accomplish anything for the future if people honestly believe that we--or any decent human-- could celebrate the deaths of those children?

    The emotion I feel is a desire to never allow such a thing to happen again. It's rage, it's sorrow. It's the need to take action.

    The death of those children--or the people in the theater or the cop on the corner is most definitely not a dream come true. when you believe fellow humans can think such sickening thoughts, you demean yourself. Okay, that last bit is a trifle hysterical, but this cuts to the bone.

  46. Old arguments, old justifications and an archaic law. The Old West had never truly died, has it?

    People are the dysfunction, but why hold onto something we see and disdain in other parts of the world? (the brandishing of arms)

  47. Wow, Lee, you sure know how to stir a pot. This has been an amazing read.

    Growing up in Illinois where there were guns all over our house, I never thought much about guns. My father and brothers used the guns to protect livestock, shoot wild and/or rabid dogs, hunt for game that fed the family. These were not recreational guns.

    The focus resulting from these latest tragedies needs to be on mental health and identifying at-risk individuals. They had access to guns, but they could have had access to bomb making materials, such as fertilizer, petrol, black powder--materials used at Oklahoma City.
    Just how far, how deep can controlling weapons of destruction go?

  48. Kate -- Thank you for being a part of the discussion. I can understand your sorrow, but I too am a bit disturbed when we get these opportunistic outcries after a tragic situation. Now is not a time to be overly reactionary to the detriment of future freedom.

    DG -- So if the good gun-owners (there is such a thing you know) give up all of their weapons, or at least the assault style weapons, does that also mean all the bad guys will turn in theirs? Will all of the armies lay down their arms? Will their be absolute peace on Earth? If the U.S. destroys their nuclear arsenals does that mean the whole world will follow our example? There is a lot of evil in the world and the force of good must be equal to that evil force. Has history taught us any lessons?

    Susan -- Isn't this a stimulating debate? This is the sort of thing I've been hoping to achieve with some of my "Tossing It Out" topics. By discussing issues we might become clearer on them if nothing else. You have produced one of the keys to the door that is most important: What's wrong with the minds of the people who do horrible things? Not what's wrong with the things they use to commit those horrible acts. If we want to think in terms of the victim society then every single one of us are victims--the good, the bad, the living and the dead. Why is our society so obsessed with victimization?



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