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View Diary: Gun safety measures supported by public, NRA still denying reality (105 comments)

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  •  And... (6+ / 0-)
    Ninety-two percent of Americans favor background checks for all potential gun buyers, according to a new CBS News/New York Times poll.
    and in the same poll
    Seventy-four percent of Americans, meanwhile, said that more armed security guards would help prevent mass shootings in public places. Thirty-five percent said armed guards would help a lot in places like schools, movie theatres and malls, and another 39 percent said they would help some. One in four said they would not help.
    Excluding that doesn't make it go away that although we have disdain for LaPierre - that the vast majority of AMerican also belive that having guards at schools would help prevent Newtown type shootings as well.

    The care of human life and happiness, and not their destruction, is the first and only legitimate object of good government. - Thomas Jefferson

    by ctexrep on Thu Jan 17, 2013 at 08:20:17 AM PST

    •  the 74% are imagining secret serivce levels of (9+ / 0-)

      armed security guards

      What they are getting is mall cops with brain blasters.

      Heaven help us.

      Sign my White House Petition Enforce the KEEP in the Second Amendment We don't have a problem with gun control, we have a problem with gun owners controlling their guns.

      by 88kathy on Thu Jan 17, 2013 at 08:28:51 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  The belief that armed security guards (6+ / 0-)

      would help to prevent mass shootings was noted in the diary above.

      I don't really think that's much of an issue.  The reality is that this country has been well trained primarily in the Bush years to accept this theory of security.  Many schools and other public gathering places already have armed security personnel, anyway.

      The main thing that gun safety advocates have to continue to stress is what we can do that is new or different from what we've been doing because that's where the problems are coming from.  Even if Newtown had had a security guard, the speed at which the shooter's weapon discharged rounds would have still left a lot of people dead that day.  At the theater in Aurora, 30 people had already been shot within 30 seconds.  An armed guard would not have prevented that carnage.

      •  I agree with you (1+ / 0-)
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        I don't think anything stops a crazy person.  The mere fact that millions of killing weapons exist and millions of high capacity magazines exist (Most of that we have no clue of where they are and who owns them) makes passing a law to prevent this just as effective as the guard - which is little or none.

        If passing a law kept guns off the streets - maybe we should pass them for cocaine and crystal meth....ooppps - they already exist.  ;-)

        The care of human life and happiness, and not their destruction, is the first and only legitimate object of good government. - Thomas Jefferson

        by ctexrep on Thu Jan 17, 2013 at 09:05:35 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  Well, we aren't enforcing the laws we already (2+ / 0-)
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          noway2, Buckeye54

          have and we don't have certain laws and systems that we do need.  It will be a long term project trying to clean up the illegal trafficking for instance.  I think that there are many things we can do to take the lawlessness down a few notches.

        •  I kind of agree with your reasoning (4+ / 0-)

          But I think the problem is that the widespread availability of these kinds of weapons and magazines is a result of not restricting them earlier.  After all, virtually every gun used in committing a crime was purchased legally at some point.  These types of weapons were not always present in such large numbers.  Had we banned them at that time, they would not be readily available now, and these shootings would be perpetrated by people armed with revolvers.

          So I think you're right that the cat's out of the bag.  Nonetheless, you need to step in at some point and say that further evolution of these weapons is unacceptable.  Who knows what "assault-style" weapons and high capacity magazines will be like in 20 years?  I worry that in 2032 we'll be sitting around saying, "Well, it's too late now, but if we had banned these weapons in 2012 we wouldn't be facing them now".  Rather than addressing the current weapon supply, I think these laws are aimed at holding the line, and preventing us from having to face even more deadly weapons in the future.

          To believe that markets determine value is to believe that milk comes from plastic bottles. Bromley (1985)

          by sneakers563 on Thu Jan 17, 2013 at 09:40:04 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  Machine guns were banned. (1+ / 0-)
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            We don't see those making appearances all over the country anymore.

            Your point is absolutely correct in the sense that we've basically gone to a model of zero safety regulation which is just too extreme and, frankly, ridiculous.  And where we do still have some legal framework in place, the laws are often not enforced.

            The lack of enforcement of existing law is sort of like if the police and prosecutors decided to just not pursue a high percentage of people who commit murder.  Eventually, the murder rate would go up because more people would feel they could get away with it.

            I really think that this country is on the precipice of becoming one of those countries in which life is cheap - or we could choose not to be - but it is a choice - it isn't something that "just happens" for no reason, IMO.

          •  There is a little issue called in Common Use (3+ / 0-)
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            ctexrep, sneakers563, Hangpilot

            Per the SCOTUS ruling United States v. Miller,

            the sorts of weapons protected are those “in common use at the time”
            The AR 15 and semiautomatic handguns containing between 11 and 19 rounds are amongst the most commonly carried by police and civilians for the purpose of defense.  It is also important to note that these are NOT military weapons designed for the battlefield.  They are civilian models that cosmetically resemble those for the battlefield.

            At a minimum without legislative action and based upon the above I think without at least a SCOTUS ruling (not just legislation), a ban is a non starter.

            If at some point in such as in 2032, the (civilian) police carry phasers or plasma rifles, then according to the present rules these would also be justifiable for carry by the citizens.

          •  Your point is well taken (1+ / 0-)
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            The technology and efficiency of weaponry has taken off - and it's time to try and reel it in.

            My concern with laws and the false sense of security they can create takes people off guard.

            Of the ~32K deaths that result from firearms each year - more than half are suicide.

            Studies have shown that over 90% of people who die from suicide have one or more psychiatric disorders at the time of their death. Luckily, there are ways to treat and control these disorders and potentially prevent suicide.
            Here's the link.

            Stonger background checks - eliminating loopholes in the B/G check process - can prevent a lot of these people from having access to guns.  Now there are other ways to commit suicide - but a gun seems to be quick and convenient.  It's too bad data isn't kept on the total number of suicides and of those committed, how many had access to guns used them vs some other form (hanging, medication etc).  Considering many who commit suicide don't really want to die - making it less convenient for those who suffer from mental illness not only protects them from themselves, but to others as well.

            This doesn't exactly address the Newtown type shooter - since the systems worked - he was just psychotic - and I have strong doubts that a person such as Lanza can be stopped by gun laws - we don't know all the facts of this persons mental state - drugs he may have been taking, if he had violent tendencies.

            I'm all for strick background checks (I think even the NRA is) - I'm for eliminating high capacity clips - I don't think tht a style of weapon is all that relevent.  If you ban assault syle weapon with limiting clip size - gun mfg will just produce larger clips for semi-auto hunting rifles - or rifles will be designed to get around the assault ban yet have the same capabilities.

            This isn't going to be easy - and really it shouldn't.  People have a legitimate right to own a firearm - that has to be balanced with everyones expectation of security and welfare regardless of gun ownership.

            The care of human life and happiness, and not their destruction, is the first and only legitimate object of good government. - Thomas Jefferson

            by ctexrep on Thu Jan 17, 2013 at 10:33:26 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

        •  Laws won't stop a crazy person. Neither will (0+ / 0-)

          having AN armed guard or two roaming around the school.  In events like these, the response needs to be immediate.  It truly is a matter when seconds do count.  Arming the teachers may not be the answer, but they sure as hell need a better option than cowering while praying, "please don't see me."

          •  Teachers want to protect their students (0+ / 0-)

            Obviously, no teacher (or anyone) would want to face what the teachers in Newtown had to deal with - even pepper spray or mace could have made a difference - it wouldn't have eliminated the carnage but it could have limited it - like you said cowering and praying aren't exactly good options.

            The care of human life and happiness, and not their destruction, is the first and only legitimate object of good government. - Thomas Jefferson

            by ctexrep on Thu Jan 17, 2013 at 10:45:06 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

      •  No, an armed guard would not have prevented (0+ / 0-)

        that carnage.  What we do know is that he stopped when he was confronted.  We also don't know if had he encountered immediate and forceful resistance if he would have stopped sooner.  Nor do we know if anyone would have been able to stop him sooner.  Is there a reason he chose that theater and was it because it was the only one in the immediate vicinity that banned licensed people from being armed?

        There are too many unknowns.

        •  IIRC the shooter at the theater's weapon (1+ / 0-)
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          jammed after about 70+ rounds (out of 100) and that's when people around him were able to subdue him.

          Ironically, I think that he may be the only person in the room that night who would have standing to bring a lawsuit against the manufacturer of the gun and/or ammo magazine.  One of the few things you can sue the manufacturers for is malfunction.  Isn't that ironic.

          Anyway, in the case of every one of the recent shootings, the moment where a reload or switch to another weapon has been the moment where people have been stopped.  The moments before have offered carnage consistent with the number of available rounds and the speed of the weapons in discharging those rounds.  It is fair to make the speed of the weapons and the high capacity magazines a focus for safety changes.

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