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guns...what for??(57 posts)

guns...what for??doped
Sep 25, 2003 8:07 AM
as a non-american, can someone explain to me why an individual needs a weapon of war? everyday i hear a story of some nut killing someone in the states, today in a school. what's wrong with ya'll??
Sep 25, 2003 8:11 AM
It's 2 a.m. and you are home in bed with your family. Downstairs, you hear someone bashing in a window. What do you do?
Sep 25, 2003 8:26 AM
open up my colorado cyclist catalog to page 11 and blind him/her with the price of a record grouppo. then club him with zefal frame pump. then i would call you, so you could blow his brains out. get an alarm. secure your house better. violence breeds more violence.
so, you have a dead family, but you feel better?DougSloan
Sep 25, 2003 8:55 AM
Alarms don't keep people out. Any house, short of maybe the White House, can be broken into. Police (or neighbors, friends, etc.) can't arrive fast enough. It is the criminal's violence the breeds more violence, not mine defending myself.

Hopefully, no one ever needs to defend with a gun. Hopefully, the half-way intelligent would-be criminals figure that I just might have a gun, and just might use it, and just might be deterred from breaking into my house. Come to think of it, I really should be putting stickers on my windows and doors that say "Break into my house and I'll blow your ******* head off!"

Tell you what, you guarantee that no criminals have guns or any other deadly weapons, or are a lot bigger than my wife or me, and I'll readily melt down the guns. Guns can keep the playing field more equal, so little guys and gals don't get victimized.

how about a taser? or some other non-lethal means?ColnagoFE
Sep 25, 2003 9:00 AM
A big dog works well too. Guns aren't the only thing that can keep you safe.
good ideas?DougSloan
Sep 25, 2003 10:07 AM
I will never have a deadly dog around. To me, that's insane. Even an apparenly nice big dog can be dangerous. My parents had a Siberian Husky that was a perfectly fine dog for 7 years, then without any forewarning mauled my young neice. I think that was the dog's last day alive.

A taser has no deterrent value, as far as I can tell. Also, range, repeated uses, etc., are concerns.

The perfect defense gun would be 100% reliable, easy to use, accurate, work for several shots, would work only for the owner, and temporarily disabling but non-lethal. The day someone makes one and offers it for sale I'll buy it.

Deterrence.Jon Billheimer
Sep 25, 2003 10:27 AM
Deterrence is a non-issue since the thug breaking into your home doesn't know whether you have a gun, a taser, a dog or whatever.

Also, there is some evidence that certain criminal tendencies and behaviour may be rooted in the hardwiring of the brain. Consequently many criminals are not deterred by laws, etc. They act without respect for possible consequences. I say some, as the total extent of the biological factors is not known.
Sep 25, 2003 10:31 AM
That sounds a bit conclusory. Sure, at present the criminal does not *know* if I have a gun. However, he knows it's a possibility. If guns were banned, then he'd at least reasonably know I *do not* have one, and if he does get one, he would have the advantage and might be a bit more brash in his behavior.

Some criminals may be total irrational lunatics. Others could be marginal, though, and might at least possess some sense of self-preservation. Knowing a home could be defended with lethal force might deter a few, and we can do is attempt to better the odds; nothing is certain.

non-issue?Jon Billheimer
Sep 25, 2003 11:42 AM
First of all, the only way "gun control" would really work is if no one has them--which was my original point. However, as it is at present you may or may not have a gun, the crook doesn't know whether you do or not and probably doesn't care. So in our present climate deterrence is not a factor. Also, with respect to deterrance and criminal behaviour, the statistical record has for decades demonstrated that in the case of capital punishment, for instance, that it does not deter murderers. Murder rates are the same whether a jurisdiction has capital punishment or not. Every criminologist in the business will verify that. (BTW, just to save a foaming right wing rant, I'm not against capital punishment.) So I think that brings us back to the issue of the hardwired criminal mindset.

In my opinion, the risks of gun ownership outweigh the benefits of gun ownership.
Sep 28, 2003 8:31 AM
Of course, if you have a bumper/window sticker that says "This car/house insured by Smith and Wesson" they DO know you have a gun - which makes your house more likely to be burglarized when you're not home. At least it seems like it would. Like you say, thieves can break into ANY house.
Actually, big dogs don't work nearly as well as...Matno
Sep 28, 2003 8:31 AM
little dogs. At least according to a survey I remember reading a while back. Seems that big dogs are more prone to be friendly, while little dogs are often more territorial, more easily threatened (and hence more likely to actually bite), and much better at waking up sleeping home owners (lousy little yappers!).

A lot of things will keep you safe, but a gun is always a nice last resort. Few things will keep you AS safe as a gun. I do think that all gun owners should spend a lot of time both firing and handling their guns. Not knowing how to use one comfortably is a scary thought - but not as scary as not having one at all.
So, do you carry a gun when you ride??MR_GRUMPY
Sep 25, 2003 9:07 AM
Don't you think that you have a better chance being murdered by an irate SUVer, than being murdered in your house ?
If you are worried about crime in your area, move.
no, but I've thought about itDougSloan
Sep 25, 2003 9:52 AM
Don't think that's legal, and I'd certainly get caught up in yet another titanium vs. steel vs. composites issue, anyway.

I didn't say I was worried about crime. There is difference between being worried and being prepared. (Oh, and by the way, the guns are secure so that little ones cannot access them. Sure, it slows down retrieval, but that is a chance I'll take.)

Are you serious about that last statement? It probably applies to 90% of Americans. Just where are they supposed to move to?

Don't tell anybody, but I rarely lock my doors.MR_GRUMPY
Sep 25, 2003 10:09 AM
And I live in the great suburban Chicagoland area. If I was really worried about crime, there is no way that I'd try to use a handgun to protect my family. In my opinion, the best home defence device is a 16 gauge semi auto shotgun, loaded with birdshot. It would be pretty hard to kill your kid, when he is sneaking in at 3:00 AM, but strong enough to either make somebody fall down, or make them run like hell.
If you're really worried about hitting what's coming in the window, cut off the barrel. Just don't take it outside, ever........ Remember, ...just aim low., or you might blind the guy.
About those family deaths, Doug (long)torquer
Sep 25, 2003 11:37 AM
The last time I raised this point, I was accused of spreading anti-gun lies, so let me quote the raw numbers, as copied from a pro-gun web site:

Kellermann tabulated gunshot deaths occurring in King County, Washington, from 1978 to 1983. Table 1 below is taken from Kellermann's paper (Table 3 on p. 1559).
Table 1. Classification of 398 Gunshot Deaths involving a Firearm Kept in the Home
Type of Death No.
Unintentional deaths 12
Criminal homicide 41
Suicide 333
Unknown 3

Total 389
Self-protection homicide 9

As we see from Table 1, a ratio of 389 violent deaths to 9 justifiable homicides gives us the famous 43 to 1 ratio.

(end of quote)

Apologies that the table format got lost; go to for a more legible version, as well as the pro-gun arguement against the standard interpretation/extrapolation of this data: guns are 43 times more likely to be mis-used, with tragic consequences, than used for protection. (That's my paraphrasing.)

Now admittedly I'm no statistician, but the technical counter-arguements raised by the pro-gunners just don't make sense to me. Even if Kellerman was off by a factor of 20, that still leaves it twice as likely that you will come to grief due to your decision. The count of the number of crimes prevented by gun ownership also appears to be more wishfull thinking than anything else.

Whatever the actual risk/benefit ratio turns out to be (I am reminded of Mark Twain's reference to "lies, damn lies and statistics" at this point), I would compare the choice to keep a gun "for protection" to that of travellers who choose to drive rather than fly to their destination: they may "feel safer" at the wheel, but the death rate for airline passengers is significantly lower per mile.

That traveller's choice has little impact upon me (it may even benefit me, if it frees up a middle seat and I have a little more room on my next flight), so I can shrug off his folly. The problem with your choice to pack heat, unfortunately, is that you (not you personally, Doug, but the NRA, acting on your behalf) make it all that much harder to keep guns out of the hands of those criminals you're worried about, and that DOES impact my safety. Furthermore, when they break into your house after they've seen you going out to do some ultra-marathon, that gun will be the first thing they look for (since guns can be fenced very easily, for good money), and you will have contributed to that very environment of armed thugs you're trying to protect yourself from.

Chicken and egg dilemna? We all make our choices. I recognize that I am blessed to be living in a community where my fear of criminality is not overwhelming. (Besides, we just got two fox terriers: that'll put the fear of dog in 'em.) I can't guarantee what my choice would be if I were a bodega owner in one of the neighborhoods that I now only have to visit during daylight.

Query: where does "smart gun" technology (where the gun "reads" the shooters hand, and only functions if the shooter is authorized) stand?
Excellent analysis imo. nm128
Sep 25, 2003 12:08 PM
Sep 28, 2003 8:49 AM
That study was completely misleading. It compares the number of deaths in the home. A "successful" crime deterrent should result in a criminal being held for the police. Occasionally, it happens that the perpetrator gets killed.

The leading expert in this area, Gary Kleck has shown over and over again that gun use by law abiding citizens to AVOID violent crimes FAR outnumbers the # of criminal uses of guns. (In contrast to Dr. Kellerman's study, which has been repeatedly refuted because of poor statistical analysis and downright misleading conclusions, and never once substantiated by any other significant study).

There are approximately two million defensive gun uses (DGU's) per year by law abiding citizens. That was one of the findings in a national survey conducted by Gary Kleck, a Florida State University criminologist in 1993. Prior to Dr. Kleck's survey, thirteen other surveys indicated a range of between 800,000 to 2.5 million DGU's annually. However these surveys each had their flaws which prompted Dr. Kleck to conduct his own study specifically tailored to estimate the number of DGU's annually.

Subsequent to Kleck's study, the Department of Justice sponsored a survey in 1994 titled, Guns in America: National Survey on Private Ownership and Use of Firearms (text, PDF). Using a smaller sample size than Kleck's, this survey estimated 1.5 million DGU's annually.

I'd also like to point out that responsible, upright citizens are virtually NEVER responsible for crimes. Remove the following from the statistics before you can say that I shouldn't have guns in my home:
people who cannot legally own firearms due to previous felony conviction
people with a history of domestic violence
people who drink alcohol or use drugs (anything "mind-altering").

Remove those, and the numbers in ALL of your categories listed above will drop dramatically.
Constitution question...Tri_Rich
Sep 25, 2003 9:48 AM
Doesn't it say something about a well regulated militia being law to infringe on the right to bear arms?

Couldn't this be taken as promoting gun ownership for civil defense and only with appropriate training and oversight of gun owners? Or am I just inserting my own feelings that if you are going to give people a deadly instrument you should limit the possibilty of accidents as much as possible.
very unclear answerDougSloan
Sep 25, 2003 9:59 AM
This has been debated endless by lots of people much more informed than we are. It seems people read the 2nd Amendment in the context they want. It could mean that those two statements are in series and independent, or that they are dependent. I've seen English language scholars interpret both ways and historians interpret both ways. I don't think the U.S. Supreme Court has ever directly addressed the question.

It reads exactly:

Amendment II

"A well regulated militia, being necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms, shall not be infringed."

It could mean that both a militia *and* the right to bear arms shall not be infringed (in series). It could mean that arms are necessary for a militia (dependent). It has not been conclusively decided, as far as I know. People seem to take whichever side that supports their desired outcome.

Thanks, Doug...Tri_Rich
Sep 25, 2003 10:11 AM
...for not clearing that up at all!!!

blame those guys 200 years agoDougSloan
Sep 25, 2003 10:17 AM
What they could have said:

"A well regulated militia, being necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the militia to keep and bear arms, shall not be infringed."


"Neither a well regulated militia nor the right of the people to keep and bear arms shall be infringed."
re: guns...what for??MR_GRUMPY
Sep 25, 2003 8:25 AM
If I squint real hard, I can 'kinda understand people who like to go out hunting. For them, a shotgun or a rifle is a must. (For those who don't like to hunt bears with spears)
The handgun thing, is a whole 'nuther story. Anybody that thinks that they can pull out a handgun, load it, and hit something, while they are scared to death, is plain nuts.
The problem lies in having all these "self defence" guns sitting around. When someone gets mad enough, they grab their gun and blaze away.
re: guns...what for??BikeViking
Sep 25, 2003 10:49 AM
"When someone gets mad enough, they grab their gun and blaze away."

It's rhetoric like this that feeds the anti-firearm movement. There is no evidence that the above stated action(s) ever take place! I have been PLENTY mad on more thatn one occaison, but shooting someone becasue of it was the FURTHEST thing from my mind.

re: guns...what for??Jon Billheimer
Sep 25, 2003 11:52 AM
Have you ever heard the term "going postal"? Road rage? Crimes of passion?
you are us, toomohair_chair
Sep 25, 2003 8:30 AM
Why does this have to be an American thing?

Why does everyone in the middle east seem to walk around with AK-47s?

I'll also remind you of a few non-American events:

Dunblane, Scotland, 1996: deranged gunman kills 16 children, a teacher and himself.

Erfurt, Germany, 2002: 18 shot and killed by an expelled kid.

Yemen, 1997: A man with an assault rifle attacked hundreds of pupils at two schools in Sanaa, killing six children and two others.

Canada, 1999: 14-year-old boy shot and killed one 17-year-old student and seriously injured another 11th grade student.
TROLL (nm)ColnagoFE
Sep 25, 2003 8:34 AM
TROLL ?Jon Billheimer
Sep 25, 2003 8:42 AM
Why is Mohair a troll? The point is if you put guns in peoples' hands they're going to use them. The uniquely American aspect of this issue is, in my opinion, the constitutional angle which in many Americans' minds raises the "right to bear arms" to near metaphysical status.
"doped" was the troll i was referring toColnagoFE
Sep 25, 2003 8:58 AM
you never win an argument concerining guns or the right to keep and bear arms. all you have to do to start an endless and pointeless thread about pro/con guns is post something about how people should't have them.
"doped" was the troll i was referring todoped
Sep 25, 2003 12:00 PM
i don't know what a troll is, but if it is some sort of personal insult, keep it to yourself. the 200 people who've read this thread all have opinions about this issue,will you be attacking them too? a question about american society, the greatest on earth isn't pointless.
no but arguments about guns are pointlessColnagoFE
Sep 29, 2003 8:48 AM
everyone seems to have already made up his/her mind and is unwilling to listen to any debate. If challenged the pro guns always come back with the constitutional issue. Anti gun always state that having a gun in the house for protection is actually less safe than not owning one.
Jon you can honestly say that ...Live Steam
Sep 25, 2003 9:05 AM
up in the Great White North people don't own guns? Guns to hunt with and guns for protection. At best, I think that is very naive thinking. America is not the only country where guns are owned legally or illegally. People die from guns every day in every country on the planet.

The reason the US takes a hit for this is because we are an open book. Someone here takes a crap and it's international news. It is just popular among liberals to trash the US as so many here seem to do on a regular basis. I think many of you are either fooling yourselves or are just plain hypocrites when it comes to some of the issues that are raised here each day.
Jon you can honestly say that ...Jon Billheimer
Sep 25, 2003 9:16 AM
I said no such thing. Mohair's example included a homicide in Canada. The simple point is that if people have guns they use them. The more guns out and about the more accidents, suicides, and homicides by guns. Simple, obvious point. The unresolvable conundrum here would be how to get rid of ALL guns, including the ones that the bad guys have.

Steam, you're always thinking with your brain stem, labelling everything as left/right, pro- or anti-American etc. Why don't you just calm down for a change and think with your cortex?
Bowling for ColumbineColnagoFE
Sep 25, 2003 9:36 AM
Didn't Moore quote some stat that showed Canadians owned more guns per capita than the US did? And that most of them were hunting weapons.
the dichotomy of freedomStarliner
Sep 25, 2003 9:30 AM
The more freedom a society gives their people, the more need there is for individual boundaries to be in place. If you think there's a lot of trespassers out there, one option many seem to take is to arm themselves (see Doug's post). This in a way is a vote of no confidence in the level of protection provided by society, which mirrors the lack of confidence in our government these people have with regard to keeping people from illegally entering this country. Come to think of it, I'll bet gun advocates are among the biggest supporters of anti-illegal immigration measures.

I suppose freedom is no more than a state of mind. Are gun owners really free, in their own minds? I don't think so. Guns are a crutch that, if taken away, would turn many of them paranoid.
Sep 25, 2003 10:04 AM
I'll say. If I understand what you wrote, the more freedom we have the more control is needed. Is that right? How does that work?

Freedom isn't given by society. It is one of those inalienble rights endowed by our creator. Society only takes freedoms away.

Sep 25, 2003 10:12 AM
I agree that governments do not create freedom. However, they are there expressly to preserve it. In ararchy (no government) you'd be free -- free to barricade yourself and shoot intruders, or drive tank type vehicles like in Mad Max. Further, what happens when someone doesn't pay you a debt -- you duel for it?

Sep 25, 2003 12:14 PM
Governments are there expressly to preserve freedom? That would be relative to the amount of freedom permitted, which might be very little in a place like North Korea.

I would submit that a government like ours exists to provide a workable operational structure for its society. Otherwise, chaotic things such as you mentioned could prevail. But to preserve freedom? I'm too cynical to believe in that. Perhaps self-preservation, at best.
let's just say that was the original intent of the U.S., imo nmDougSloan
Sep 25, 2003 12:16 PM
One of the intents53T
Sep 25, 2003 12:40 PM
Form a more perfect union,
Establish justice,
Insure domestic tranquility,
Provide for the common defence,
Promote the general welfare,
Secure the blessings of liberty.

You have to get through a lot of law enforcement, government opporession and spending programs before you get anywhere near liberty. Even then the language is that of "security", rather than freedom.

It was this focus on law and order that prompted the need for the Bill of Rights.

No, I can't agree that the prime role of any government is to maintain liberty. The best of them try to restrain the extent to which liberties are diminished, but that is all they can do.

Despite what the wrote in the preamble to the Constitution, the founders know that the greatest threat to liberty is always one's own government. Furthermore, an armed poulation is the only defence against the tyrany of our elected leaders.
Sep 25, 2003 12:01 PM
You're close to understanding what I meant. I believe your point about society taking individual freedoms away is correct in the most fundamental way. So, what I'm saying is, the more freedom a society gives back to the individual, the more self-control is needed from each individual.
Anybody remember the "conservatives are fearful" study?retro
Sep 25, 2003 9:30 AM
There was a survey three or four years ago--not necessarily unimpeachable, now that I think of it--that found conservatives were considerably "more fearful" than other ideological groups. They believed they weren't safe in their homes or their neighborhoods, that other groups were out to get them and that they needed the ability to defend themselves. Moderates and liberals, even in areas that were statistically more dangerous, had far fewer worries. There were also differences in the perceived quality of their sex lives, with conservatives generally less happy and less willing to experiment ("The missionary position was good enough for mom and dad, and it's good enough for me"?).
Maybe that's why they need those great big guns.
Anybody remember the "conservatives are fearful" study?BikeViking
Sep 25, 2003 11:09 AM
Ludicrous post...where does this stuff come from? I have never heard of such a study and, without a reference, I am even MORE skeptical of it.

Besides, being somewhat "conservative", there IS more to life than the "missionary" position!! :o}

I hear this from a passionate NRA member oncekilimanjaro
Sep 25, 2003 9:31 AM
1)Criminals will be less likely to commit crime in public if there is the possibility of 1 in 50 carrying concealed weapons. Though I don't have the primary source and don't know if this statistic is biased. A supporting statistic is that crime rate is much lower around shooting ranges (one possible mitigating reason is cops who target practice 24/7).

2)It is easy to list negative statistics of having handguns, accidental shooting, crimes of rage, vendettas at school, home etc. However, how do you count number lives saved or crimes prevented due to legal firearms?

I was formally pretty anti firearm. Now I just know I don't want a firearm for myself, and probably think like the majority of the public that the balance is somewhere between a free for all and no firearms at all.
I'm in the "war biz" and own a gun, but that's not why.sn69
Sep 25, 2003 7:54 PM
When I was in college I was an RA at the Univeristy of Florida (4.5 years of varsity-heavy drinking). When the Gainesville murders occurred two summers before I escaped, er, graduated, I remained on campus with a number of female residents whose parents lived out of the country. They were stuck, and I felt obligated to stay with them while the rest of the student body essentially packed-up and fled. Three days into the murder spree there was a knock at my door--it was my father, who apparently drove up from North Miami. He had a pistol for me, ostensibly to aerate the perp if he showed up at Murphree Hall. I've had it ever since, and while I target "plink" on occassion, it sits unloaded in a drawer.

My home protection plan is threefold, and it doesn't include a firearm. First, I use passive deterrents, including nightime lighting and prickly shrubs under the windows. Second, I have the honor/pleasure of sharing my life with two wonderful dogs who take their watch & alert duties quite seriously. Most cops agree that barking dogs are the BEST deterrent. Third, I have a heat-tempered Louisville Slugger beside the nightstand. No Big Bertha or Glock for me--if push ever comes to shove, I intend to launch a perp's head clean off his body into left field.'s that for non-firearm violence? Truth be told, however, once we have children, I will disassemble the pistol and scatter the key parts. I'm not anti-gun by any means (what I carry professionally is a different issue entirely), but I don't want the weapon to be useable when little ones are present. Likewise, I fully support hunting, whether by firearm or bow. Like it or not, that is part of our heritage here.

Now, with all that said, I do support firearm limitations. Convicted criminals should never again have the right to bear arms. I have no problem with background checks, cooling-off periods or restrictions on certain types/calibers of weapons. The far right's preposterous arguments that we need them for homeland defense are beyond stupid. The Redcoats came, twice, a long damned time ago, and we whooped 'em good. They ain't coming back, nor are the Reds, the Chinese or anyone else. A Barret .50 cal rifle wouldn't have done a lick of good on 9-11. Some weapons simply don't belong in the hands of the public.

What's wrong with us? Dunno. Look to yourselves. Our roots are burried in the varried cultures of foreign shores, and yours are what define ours. Is ours a more violent society? In some ways yes; in others no. The incidents of child and spousal abuse in the US are far lower than in Europe. The institutionalized ("all I wanted was a Pepsi") violence here pales in comparison to the Middle East. Still, you're correct--our children are killing one another at an appalling rate, and the latest trend, gang-related/socio-economic violence notwithstanding, speaks to an issue far more ominous than the mere presence of weapons. Parenting seems to be less of a priority and is muddied by a life far more difficult than many, particularly the Right, are willing to admit.

Anyhow, 'nuf of that for now. Here's my summation of the various threads above:
Lefties--you're all a bunch of repressed, Oedipal freaks with an inherent need to shoot things.
Righties--you're all a bunch of passive-aggressive wimps who'd rather be victims than take a stand.
Lefties--F You.
Righties--F You.

Incidentally, violence takes on many forms, and we'd be hard-pressed not to acknowledge the violence of current noteable left wing groups like SoCal's Earth Liberation Front. But I digress......

Dr. Tough Love:)-Jon Billheimer
Sep 25, 2003 9:02 PM

If/when you get out of the Top Gun biz, you'd make a great shrink:)-
Dr Phil incognito? nmDougSloan
Sep 26, 2003 6:27 AM
Now that's just wrong.sn69
Sep 26, 2003 6:41 AM
And to think...I haven't even told a lawyer joke in at least three or four months.....

FWIW, I have too much hair, I'm not a redneck (oops...I said a bad word) and I think that Oprah is the anti-Christ.
But Scott...Jon Billheimer
Sep 26, 2003 7:13 AM
just think, another Jewish psychiatrist! Exactly what the world needs, right?? Oi vay:)-
I can sum up Jewish psychology quite simply:sn69
Sep 26, 2003 7:21 AM
1. You shoulda been a dactah. (No, I prefer the fancified image of military potentate, even if I am a REMF now.)
2. I carried you in my body for 10 months and THIS is how you treat me? (Wasn't my choice to be in there--blechhh.)
3. Are you eating enough? (She actually wrote my first Commanding Officer to ask that!!!!)
4. Oy, such a mouthpiece; do you have to be such a smart-ass? (Um, like, yes.)
5. But you like gefelte fish. (No, for the record, I DO NOT!)
6. Where are my grandchildren? (They're still hanging on racks at aisle 7 at Walmart...haven't gotten around to buying them yet.)

Back to the gun issue. Oddly, Mumsie was a cop when I was young. She made it a point to teach me how to use her gun at age 7. Seemed/seems young by comparison, but firing that cannon was enough to scare the crap out of me at a young age, and I never once messed with it. Oh, and my quotes above are a bit exaggerated. Having been a cop for 20 years, her diction is less defined by Jewish colloquialisms than it is by cursing ("You little sonofab__ch, I diaped your fithly a@@....").
agree mostlyDougSloan
Sep 26, 2003 7:25 AM
I agree mostly.

However, what's wrong with a safe? No need to totally disassemble. Just keep the arms in a good safe. We have one with a digital keypad that I can open in about 5 seconds, but unauthorized entry would be darn near impossible. Good for other stuff, anyway.

There are the Righties and Lefties, and then there are the ones who truly believe in freedom and personal responsibility (sometimes called Libertarians). Even if I disliked or even hated guns, I'd still support others' right to own them, if they are responsible and don't commit crimes with them. Ban behavior, not things. Of course, you can take this to absurdity, and I'll agree at some point community interests prevail; no need to permit personal ownership of nuclear weapons; where you draw the line between a hunting shotgun and a nuke will always be difficult, but I'd draw it somewhere along the lines of having the ability to kill lots of people at once. No legitimate need or purpose for that.

I've thought about a safe.sn69
Sep 26, 2003 7:35 AM
And a trigger lock. Still, I've got no problem disassembling it. I still insist that my first two crime deterrents work fine, particulary the barking critters (I don't think Ed would approve, though--one's a schnauzer, the other's a lab).

Likewise, I generally agree with your philosophy of banning behaviors and not things. Still, guns are a heart-felt issue for most, left or right. That's where I think advocacy groups have gone off the deep end. The stances that they should either be banned outright or allowed without restriciton are foolhardy at best, but both sides have divergent sin-wave arguments that only get more wacky as they spread from the source (eventually leading to meat is murder versus the freeman militias). Whatever--I'll trust Good Mr. Holmes and his marketplace theory.

That Europe and Asia can't comprehend our desire to keep and bear arms is rooted in the near-past. Lest we forget, they were forced to disarm completely a scant 50 years ago at the societal level. Having your nations/homes/lands laid waste by war can do that, but not always. There are still places where gun equate to power, such as the Middle East. Then again, liberation from Brittish imperialism and Soviet occupation never once included the degree of nation-building that Europe and Japan benefitted from. Again, another digressive argument.

Gotta go to work now, flyin' late tonight...possibly up your way, Doug, towards Lemoore.
on banning behaviors and thingsStarliner
Sep 26, 2003 11:57 PM
I just couldn't let this pass....think about what you guys are saying - it's strange that Doug, one of this board's leading champions of freedom, say he'd rather ban behavior rather than things - there's something oddly amiss there -

Doug, does that mean that you are for the decriminalization/legalization of drugs, but against people using them? Just how will that work?

The right answers to complex problems such as these are not going to be found within the limited scope of simple sounding, slogan-like beliefs.
no they're notsn69
Sep 27, 2003 8:55 AM
that much is right on the money, and as with most issues discussed here, things get grossly over-simplified.

still, at the basic level, murder is a behavior (behaviour for Jon's sake), child abuse is a behavior, drunk driving is a behavior, etc. sometimes it's appropriate to ban certain, specific empowering objects, such as machine guns, homemade amonium nitrate bombs, and such. in others, however, there is no specific objectifiable enabler to ban--how does one ban parenthood by bad peole with a predisposition to hurt children?!

keep turning the diamond in the light and you'll continue to see new facets.....
the pointDougSloan
Sep 28, 2003 4:59 AM
The point is that there can be good and bad uses for things. Ban criminal activity, is what I meant, which, in the Libertarian world, means hurting someone else.

but even simple posession of pot is now a "criminal activity" (nColnagoFE
Sep 29, 2003 8:56 AM
... people with indequacy issues.feckless
Sep 28, 2003 4:54 PM
... who can type ... inadequacy - duh.feckless
Sep 28, 2003 4:55 PM