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  •  the "assault rifle" thing (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    jsfox, annecros, gzodik

    comes from the near-automatic association with "tea party" and "militias" and other right-wing wackadoodles.  And it's not that far from "wrong" . . . there is an obvious, and probably correct, association between wanting such things and, um, significant defect in socialization.  It's not an accident that they feature prominently in mass killings . . . crazy people gravitate to them as part of their "power" fantasies, so when they "go over the edge" those are the weapons they're most likely to choose.

    But you're right, of course, that the overwhelming majority of shootings are done with handguns, and the "weapon of choice" of the street gangs is the semi-automatic pistol with a large capacity magazine.  Banning those would be a more sensible place to begin . . . and rather easy to implement, too, with scanners in the doorways of places of public commerce as a simple start.

    Fake Left, Drive Right . . . not my idea of a Democrat . . .

    by Deward Hastings on Fri Feb 15, 2013 at 05:42:04 AM PST

    •  See, that's where this whole kerfluffle (8+ / 0-)

      loses me.

      How can people say:

      crazy people gravitate to them as part of their "power" fantasies, so when they "go over the edge" those are the weapons they're most likely to choose.
      But then do absolutely nothing, not even make the suggestion, that the crazy people with "power" fantasies should be helped before they go "over the edge."

      It's like banning tiny cars because clowns will seek them out and load themselves into them in an improbable manner and skeeve everybody out. It's like banning coupons because hoarders will utilize them. It's like banning cats because the crazy cat ladies have a lot of them. Too much focusing on the symptom and not the disease. In my humble opinion, of course.

      Not directed at you Deward. Just generally venting.

      •  It's easier to find the guns (0+ / 0-)

        than it is to find the crazies.  And it's probably easier to separate the crazies from guns (or at least make access more difficult for them) than it is to "cure" them.

        I think that one of the best arguments for the otherwise silly "assault rifle" ban is that a desire for such things is a strong diagnostic indicator of mental disorder.  It is a statement of the form "I want to (be able to) kill a lot of people".  Intervention and therapy is indicated . . .

        Fake Left, Drive Right . . . not my idea of a Democrat . . .

        by Deward Hastings on Fri Feb 15, 2013 at 06:14:06 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  So we shouldn't do it because it's hard? (7+ / 0-)

          Try finding 300,000,000 guns that generally don't leave the home.

          There are all sorts of reasons for owning what has been defined as an "Assault Weapon" by Feinstein's draft. Practical reasons, appreciated by those who live in rural areas or shoot for sport. It is not a "symptom" of anything other than wanting to efficiently remove a raccoon from the chicken coop or that bunch of wild pigs rooting up your cash crop every night in the back 40 acres.

          You do know assault rifles are regulated already and very rare, right?

          •  Do both. (3+ / 0-)

            But don't argue that the proposed "Assault Weapon" ban, however unlikely it is to accomplish anything by itself, has any impact on legitimate firearm use "in rural areas".  They have no "practical use".  I've shot raccoon (ripping up an orchard), and taken deer from the garden, and didn't need (or use) a pistol grip or a 30 round magazine to do it.  "Rural" folks did just fine with their walnut stocks up until 20-30 years ago (and since, for that matter) . . . the raccoons haven't got all that much bigger or more aggressive since then so that they now require a "tactical" weapon to control them.  That stuff is just for the crazies . . .

            Fake Left, Drive Right . . . not my idea of a Democrat . . .

            by Deward Hastings on Fri Feb 15, 2013 at 06:40:37 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  Excuse me? (4+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              noway2, BlackSheep1, andalusi, FrankRose

              Shouldn't you be qualifying that statement as YOUR opinion?

              Ultimate Varminter

              Just because you say something over and over, doesn't make it true.

              •  LOL . . . um . . . yepers . . . (0+ / 0-)

                you'll get a lot of raccoon with that thing . . . put a picture of it on your garbage can and they'll laugh themselves to death . . .

                Fake Left, Drive Right . . . not my idea of a Democrat . . .

                by Deward Hastings on Fri Feb 15, 2013 at 10:04:19 AM PST

                [ Parent ]

                •  You know, Deward Hastings, you didn't used to soun (0+ / 0-)

                  d quite this laughably out of touch with reality.

                  I am NOT a gunsmith, but I'd bet money that I could "de-blacktical" a S&W .22LR MP4 to the degree in that "ultimate varminter" link for a lot less money than overhauling an AR-15 to fire sub-22-caliber rounds.

                  But yes -- If I'm protecting chickens, lambs, calves or my household pets, I want to be able to shoot more than one time without having to reload. I want to be able to stop the predators now.

                  LBJ, Lady Bird, Anne Richards, Barbara Jordan, Sully Sullenberger, Ike, Drew Brees, Molly Ivins --Texas is no Bush league! -7.50,-5.59

                  by BlackSheep1 on Fri Feb 15, 2013 at 01:21:18 PM PST

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  Whatever the "threat" (0+ / 0-)

                    to your "chickens, lambs, calves or . . . household pets" it will be either dead or long gone before you get the 5th round out of a Mini14 with the "standard" 5 round magazine.  Critters don't hang around while you spray lead at them.  Most of the time even the 2nd shot will net you . . . nothing . . . (except, quite likely, yourself killing what you set out to protect).  And, as a practical matter, step out on your porch (or wherever you intend to set and leave your private sniper's nest) and consider your sightlines . . . is it a 250 yard clear reach to your chicken coop?  To your calving barn?

                    What do you imagine that farmers and ranchers used to protect their livestock in the 20's and 30's and 40's and 50's and 60's and 70's before these "cosmetically militarized" urban fantasy toys came along?  And what do you suppose that real farmers and ranchers (forget the urban fantasy Rambos) use today?  Excepting at the various supremicist "freeholds" and militia summer camps, where they are busy "protecting" their "pet" delusions, of course . . .

                    If the Feinstein "Assault Weapons" ban were not only implemented but made retroactive and perfectly enforced it would inconvenience real farmers and ranchers, well, not at all.  It probably wouldn't do much to reduce "spree shootings" either (which is perhaps the one reasonable argument against the ban), but seriously, the things serve no useful purpose.

                    Fake Left, Drive Right . . . not my idea of a Democrat . . .

                    by Deward Hastings on Fri Feb 15, 2013 at 02:30:17 PM PST

                    [ Parent ]

                    •  So glad you KNOW (1+ / 0-)
                      Recommended by:
                      FrankRose

                       

                      but seriously, the things serve no useful purpose.
                      everything about everybody's situation, everywhere and everywhen.

                      Since I don't I'm willing not to try to make a whole new class of criminals out of people who want a different rifle than my Remington.

                      LBJ, Lady Bird, Anne Richards, Barbara Jordan, Sully Sullenberger, Ike, Drew Brees, Molly Ivins --Texas is no Bush league! -7.50,-5.59

                      by BlackSheep1 on Fri Feb 15, 2013 at 02:45:42 PM PST

                      [ Parent ]

                      •  One minute you're "protecting your chickens" (0+ / 0-)

                        and the next it's everyone (who wants one) should have machine guns and RPGs and maybe an anti-tank gun or two, because, well, you don't know, and if someone says they need them, well, maybe they do and who are you to say ? ? ?

                        Where do you draw the line?  Somewhere short of private ownership of tactical nukes, I hope . . .

                        Fake Left, Drive Right . . . not my idea of a Democrat . . .

                        by Deward Hastings on Fri Feb 15, 2013 at 03:37:23 PM PST

                        [ Parent ]

                        •  you're still sounding laugh-out-loud out of touch (1+ / 0-)
                          Recommended by:
                          FrankRose

                          with reality, let alone anything I wrote. Where did I mention

                          machine guns and RPGs and maybe an anti-tank gun or two, because, well, you don't know, and if someone says they need them, well, maybe they do and who are you to say ? ? ?
                          Oh. That's right. I didn't.

                          Tactical nukes? How do you not kill the person deploying it?

                          LBJ, Lady Bird, Anne Richards, Barbara Jordan, Sully Sullenberger, Ike, Drew Brees, Molly Ivins --Texas is no Bush league! -7.50,-5.59

                          by BlackSheep1 on Fri Feb 15, 2013 at 03:46:49 PM PST

                          [ Parent ]

                          •  OK then, so we agree (0+ / 0-)

                            that machine guns and hand grenades aren't OK, and it's reasonable for us to make the judgement that other people don't need them.

                            I go a very short step further and say they don't need sniper rifles, assault rifles, and gray-area guns cosmetically modified to look, and in a few particulars, perform like assault rifles, and your response is to say, in essense, "who are you to say what other people need, or can have".

                            Well, who are you to say they can't have machine guns?

                            It's all in where you draw the line . . .
                             

                            Fake Left, Drive Right . . . not my idea of a Democrat . . .

                            by Deward Hastings on Fri Feb 15, 2013 at 07:34:05 PM PST

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  Nope, not buying it. (0+ / 0-)

                            YMMV.

                            The line was drawn on "machine guns" at the end of Prohibition. Not my place to gainsay that. It's legal for folks who meet the qualifications and can afford the associated fees, etc (not to mention the cost of ammunition and a proper storage safe) to own 'em within the constraints of that law. Not my place to say what they need, or should be allowed to have, with the exception that nobody's released me from that oath I first swore at 18 to support and defend the Constitution against all enemies, foreign and domestic. Same way, with non-machine-gun firearms. That oath says, "the Constitution."  Not some cafeteria-menu of choices from it. Says the Constitution. Including the Bill of Rights. Including the unpopular parts; pick an Amendment, and somebody hates it. But as long as it's the Constitution ... well.

                            You could work for an amendment. If you succeed, then you'd have far surer ground to stand on, IMO. You're guaranteed, in that same Constitution, the right to be heard on the parts you don't like. And to try to get 'em changed, and to work with other people to do that.

                            Explosives (grenades, except for rifle-grenade type rounds) are another thing, and that line's already been drawn too. Not my place to gainsay that. After Timothy McVeigh, it's not so damn easy to build up a truckload of AMFO undetected, and I reckon that's apt to be a good thing, seeing as how truckloads of AMFO are not what I'd call precision armaments. The kids in the Murrah Building nursery are the case in point.

                            I've had the opportunity to use fully-automatic firearms -- matter of fact, it was a job requirement for me, 30-plus years ago.
                            I've had the opportunity to use self-loading semi-automatic firearms, both at work and privately -- for protecting livestock, and for sport.
                            I've had the opportunity to use single-action firearms, at work and privately, for sport. Some of the USAF equipment, I dearly miss -- some of it's truly state-of-the-art stuff. Some of it, I've found better alternatives for in the many years since I separated -- not just for my use, but better gear period.

                            Benelli shotguns come to mind.

                            So you see, we don't agree at all.

                            LBJ, Lady Bird, Anne Richards, Barbara Jordan, Sully Sullenberger, Ike, Drew Brees, Molly Ivins --Texas is no Bush league! -7.50,-5.59

                            by BlackSheep1 on Fri Feb 15, 2013 at 08:24:53 PM PST

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  That's ANFO, not AMFO. (0+ / 0-)

                            If "the Constitution", as written, doesn't by itself protect the "right" to unrestricted ownership of machine guns and hand grenades then it's just silly to say that gun laws must be frozen at what they were in 1934 or 1986 because of the Constitution.

                            The Constitution, in its loosest interpretation (ignoring the "Militia" phrase), only says "right to bear arms".  That leaves it to laws to determine what arms.  Currently it's "not nukes", "not artillery", "not grenades", "not SAMs" and "not machine guns".  It could just as easily be "not more than 10 round magazines" or "must be painted international orange" and still be Constitutional.  Once you've accepted that some regulation is permitted it just doesn't do to say "up to 1934 but not after" because, you know, "the Constitution".

                            Fake Left, Drive Right . . . not my idea of a Democrat . . .

                            by Deward Hastings on Fri Feb 15, 2013 at 08:43:02 PM PST

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  So where does the banning stop? (2+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            andalusi, FrankRose

                            I mean, considering that once it starts, there's always a way to chip away a little more of the right?

                            Will it stop when there are no more privately-owned semiauto weapons?
                            Or must there be no more privately owned firearms, period?
                            SO then, as the Brits do, will we ban multitools and kitchen knives outside the home? Bows and arrows? Crossbows and trebuchets?
                            Lacrosse sticks, tennis rackets, slingshots?

                            My definition of arms doesn't begin or end at "guns". Does yours?

                            LBJ, Lady Bird, Anne Richards, Barbara Jordan, Sully Sullenberger, Ike, Drew Brees, Molly Ivins --Texas is no Bush league! -7.50,-5.59

                            by BlackSheep1 on Fri Feb 15, 2013 at 10:32:15 PM PST

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  Where does (0+ / 0-)

                            yours "begin or end"?  You still haven't managed even to say (difinitively) whether full auto 50 caliber should be allowed, unrestricted, in "private" hands (I'm on the not side of that one).

                            The line will be, as it must be, drawn where society at large determines that the social risk outweighs the individual benefit . . . and the current level of gun violence seems to weigh pretty heavily on the "unacceptable risk" side.  My personal sense is that "control" should address the greatest risk first, which is why I support banning high capacity handguns.  They kill the most people (these days) with no social or individual benefit (that cannot be more safely obtained in other ways).  And I particularly favor focusing on criminal use, which obviously involves restricting public carry (to get to the scene of the crime).

                            I put the whole "assault weapon" thing far further down in importance (fewer deaths overall), but the case is also more clear.  While there is at least some argument for handguns (self defense) any argument for high capacity magazines on a rifle or shotgun is simply ridiculous . . . the "benefit" (if any, and I think there is none) is trivial, which makes any risk unacceptable.  You can hunt without them, you can "protect your chickens" without them, and they have no "self defense" use unless you seriously anticipate the zombie apocylipse (which would make a clear case that you're too far off the deep end to own guns at all).

                            Fake Left, Drive Right . . . not my idea of a Democrat . . .

                            by Deward Hastings on Sat Feb 16, 2013 at 09:09:55 AM PST

                            [ Parent ]

            •  They certainly have a practical use (0+ / 0-)

              They are the coyote rifle of choice in my neck of the woods.......but then they are probably just people with a "significant defect in socialization."

              Nothing like dehumanizing those people when taking liberties away.

              Those who would sacrifice liberty for security deserve neither.

              by FrankRose on Sat Feb 16, 2013 at 02:57:58 AM PST

              [ Parent ]

        •  So the police use them to kill lots of people too? (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          BlackSheep1, FrankRose
    •  The crime stat's (4+ / 0-)

      http://www.fbi.gov/...

      Since data-driven is always best.

      They do show that handguns are the murderer's choice. This isn't completely surprising since it is rather hard to conceal an AR-15 (even if you replace the stock with a tube) or AK family rifle, and they are a bit big and heavy to carry around.

      I can't easily find the breakdown by type for accidents - which would also be very useful.  Most of what comes up is summary (and somewhat biased by viewpoint - the equivalent of Tennessee's message that 27% of traffic fatalities involve alcohol - so you're almost three times safer driving drunk (not really)).  My guess is that semi-automatic handguns that are similar to the glock without an external hammer or safety are probably high on the list - but this is without data!

      This really is why having the CDC and/or NIH collect data is a critical step.

      •  The CDC does collect data (0+ / 0-)

        The Republican effort to cut the CDC budget on such things is in regards to analysis, public policy and such. A lot of raw data on deaths, injuries, suicides, etc. by means and intent is there if you dig into the site far enough.

        •  I agree (0+ / 0-)

          The NRA/Republican efforts to suppress data collection and analysis are reprehensible.

          There are often simple things that can improve safety (cocking/loaded indicators on Strum-Ruger handguns are a good example, as the change from having the hammer directly rest on the primer to being offset in old single action revolvers).  Without data, it is impossible to know what to do.

          Similarly, it becomes a lot easier to argue for gun/magazine/ammunition control of a specific type if the evidence is there and clearly presented without emotional spin (either way).

    •  So basically, the ban isn't addressed at social (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      annecros, noway2, Texas Lefty, FrankRose

      harm, but a back-door attack against an ethnicity, gender, political orientation, region, or subculture.

      As for "large capacity magazines", research has shown only ~3% of shootings involve more than 10 rounds fired, with no indication that even those few would be hampered by the need to change magazines. So again, a unimplementable law that would produce no impact.

      Non enim propter gloriam, diuicias aut honores pugnamus set propter libertatem solummodo quam Nemo bonus nisi simul cum vita amittit. -Declaration of Arbroath

      by Robobagpiper on Fri Feb 15, 2013 at 08:37:41 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  I think you hit the nail on the head (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        BlackSheep1, Texas Lefty, FrankRose

        Or at least something just seriously clicked for me.

        The reason for the push on bans has nothing to do with what the bans would actually do but rather it is meant purely as an attack against what they see as their political opponents, the Republicans and the NRA.  Damn any Democrats who might be in support of gun rights because they aren't true Democrats and don't matter.

    •  oh for Ceiling Cat's sake, Deward Hastings, it is (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      FrankRose

      NOT a "tea party" or a "militia" or an "other right-wing wackadoodles" preference. It's the person who's going to make the purchase's idea of what they want.

      It's exactly like whether you'd rather drive a car or a pickup, a Prius or a GMC, a Mini Cooper or a Mazda Miata.

      It's personal preference, pure and simple. Mine being what it is, I can see where some variant on the AR-15 model might have a certain appeal; but it isn't appealing to me.

      Neither is the anti-VAWA vote of my two Senators, or their stand on my right to choose my own medical care. (They're ag'in it, 'cause I'm female.)

      LBJ, Lady Bird, Anne Richards, Barbara Jordan, Sully Sullenberger, Ike, Drew Brees, Molly Ivins --Texas is no Bush league! -7.50,-5.59

      by BlackSheep1 on Fri Feb 15, 2013 at 01:06:36 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

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