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View Diary: Background checks would not have prevented this shooting (48 comments)

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  •  Why not? (0+ / 0-)

    Gun kill, even in the hands of 4 year olds, obviously.

    What about my Daughter's future?

    by koNko on Wed Apr 10, 2013 at 07:13:20 AM PDT

    [ Parent ]

    •  The number one cause of death for US children (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      mamamorgaine

      is car accidents.  It has been for years.

      Cars kill, even when driven by responsible people, obviously.

      If you want to talk about rational reasonable regulation for something in America, then do so.  But this kind of thing is not only unproductive in its own right but it actually weakens the real arguments.

      You are the argument used against gun control.   You are hurting your cause and the cause of others.

      Красота спасет мир --F. Dostoevsky

      by Wisper on Wed Apr 10, 2013 at 07:31:51 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  I'm all for mass-transit (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        coquiero

        It is safer, cheaper and more environmentally sound, and I don't own a car.

        But cars have, actually, a productive use as transportation, which they are designed and intended for.

        Guns are designed to do harm.

        What about my Daughter's future?

        by koNko on Wed Apr 10, 2013 at 07:43:09 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  well, no. Dammit. Even these 4-year-olds could've (4+ / 0-)

      been stopped from pulling the trigger if the guns had been stored correctly and the children had been taught properly.

      Stored correctly: behind a lock the kid couldn't open. No ammunition in the firearm while it's not being used. Put the bullets on a shelf the kid can't reach. Engage the safety. Don't leave a gun laying around.

      Yes, it's true that all the gun will do, by itself, is lay there.

      But somebody will come along and pick it up and mess with it, and then you have an accident or a crime. Be proactive about safety.

      Teach the kid properly: this is not a toy. Don't touch it.
      Further: in sight of the kid, never point a firearm, even unintentionally, toward another person. Never pretend there's anything but the intent to kill what you point a firearm toward; and never ever ever treat a firearm as anything but a loaded gun.

      Permissible exceptions: when you clear the weapon for cleaning or storage, and you're disassembling it for maintenance. Step one is always, always, always open the chamber, eject the round, engage the safety. Three steps, you say? Not if you're trained, I say. If you're going to have it, use it. Use it correctly, use it competently, and when you're not using it, store it safely -- clean and ready for the next use.

      These things are not that hard. They're called behaving like a responsible adult, whether or not you're a parent.

      Or to be crude, it's what you do with regard to cars, hot water faucets, pan-handles on the stove, that industrial-size bottle of aspirin in the medicine cabinet, the kitchen knife drawer, and electrical sockets when there are kids in the house: behave as though you give a damn what might go wrong.

      LBJ, Lady Bird, Van Cliburn, Ike, Ann Richards, Barbara Jordan, Molly Ivins, Sully Sullenburger, Drew Brees: Texas is NO Bush League!

      by BlackSheep1 on Wed Apr 10, 2013 at 09:22:40 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  No guns is more simple and effective. (0+ / 0-)

        And does not rely on ideal circumstances a significant number of owners, by neglect or choice (probably more shots are fired on purpose than accident) seem incapable of realizing.

        But the following would be steps in the right direction and save lives if required:

        - stringent background checks, licensing and accountability
        - mandatory gun safety classes and tests before licensing
        - legally proscribed storage conditions including locks on guns and in cabinets
        - an end to concealed carry
        - prohibitions of gun possession or use in public places except shooting ranges of designated hunting areas
        - mandatory liability insurance

        All of which is common sense and reasonable, and probably quite effective if practiced  Countries with such regulations still have guns but far fewer casualties.

        What about my Daughter's future?

        by koNko on Wed Apr 10, 2013 at 10:01:12 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  More simple? (0+ / 0-)

          I see some big flaws in what you've written -- I'm pretty sure you didn't mean "proscribed" in that context, for instance; and mandatory liability insurance? Right. That works so well with cars. People buy short-term insurance and let it lapse, or just run from the scene of a wreck. (Yes. I've been hit by uninsured drivers. In Texas. Twenty years after you legally couldn't get a car inspected or tagged without insurance.)

          I don't see enforcement happening for mandatory firearms insurance. I do see insurance companies raking off big bucks to do nothing for their policyholders, though.

          Concealed carry banned? I'd be fine with that; I prefer open carry, 'cause it lets me know which twitchy people not to stand downrange from.  

          Makes banking and so forth easier, 'cause with the status quo I gotta not stand downrange of anybody twitchy, not to mention too close. Hard to tell which ones might have a knife, like that criminal lunatic running amok yesterday at Lone Star College.The damage to 14 people he slashed and stabbed still matters. He carried his knife concealed before he started trying to kill as many people as he could, from what I understand.

          Your prohibition notion impinges on the 2nd Amendment pretty hard, too. If, as I suspect, you think that right is antiquated and useless today, I wish you'd explain why you think a person has no right to protect themselves or their homes, children, and livestock absent immediate, effective, appropriate police response.

          LBJ, Lady Bird, Van Cliburn, Ike, Ann Richards, Barbara Jordan, Molly Ivins, Sully Sullenburger, Drew Brees: Texas is NO Bush League!

          by BlackSheep1 on Wed Apr 10, 2013 at 10:45:39 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  I do think it's antiquated (0+ / 0-)

            Very few people need guns to protect their homes unless it is to protect themselves from other gun owners. Vicious circle.

            Countries with strong, effective regulation have less violent crime because criminals find it harder obtain guns and so resort to less effective means such as knives.

            My argument is practical, not theoretical; we can never totally prevent people from attacking other but we can make it less lethal, and - surprise - when sane people haven't got what they know to be overwhelming advantage, they think differently.

            I understand your point that even if guns were totally banned people could still make their own guns, bullets and gunpowder, or buy smuggled guns, but it would make this much more difficult and the numbers doing so would become progressively fewer to some low equilibrium. That's the basic reasoning of any regulation; if you demand only laws that are universally followed without exception then you don't want rule of law.

            What about my Daughter's future?

            by koNko on Wed Apr 10, 2013 at 05:34:43 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  koNko, it's not *just* people (0+ / 0-)

              who pose a serious risk, where I live.

              Do think a minute about this:

              and - surprise - when sane people haven't got what they know to be overwhelming advantage, they think differently.

              Patently, we cannot rely on people who attack other people to be sane. We just can't. That's why the SEAL Teams, Delta Force, and the SWAT teams practice in situations they expect will be more difficult than what they'll  face in the real world. They know they're not dealing with people who are thinking at all. They're dealing with the desperate, at the very least, and often with the utterly deranged.

              Where I live, too, the dangers include things like rabid skunks (and horses, and dogs, and cats), rattlesnakes or copperheads and coral snakes, not to mention uncontrolled dogs (whether or not they're alone).

              I will refute your last point "if you demand only laws that are universally followed without exception then you don't want rule of law" by asking a question.

              Do you value law enough not to pass laws that won't be obeyed?

              LBJ, Lady Bird, Van Cliburn, Ike, Ann Richards, Barbara Jordan, Molly Ivins, Sully Sullenburger, Drew Brees: Texas is NO Bush League!

              by BlackSheep1 on Wed Apr 10, 2013 at 06:12:15 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  My thoughts (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                BlackSheep1

                First, I think you are missing the fact that the "rules" for the starting point I mentioned would not be an outright ban but just stronger regulations that wouldn't prevent people who qualify from possessing guns.

                I'll grant you that two I mention are a bit absolute for some circumstances or need reasonable/practical definition, namely, areas where guns would/would not be allowed in the public space and the issue of liability insurance, which would have to be reasonably set to avoid economic discrimination (and would best be a government self-insurance pool).

                But that's why I have put forth ideas and try to approach this with reason; we need more discussion.

                Most definitely people think differently when they have a perceived power advantage; this is an inherent attraction and hazard with weapons, particularly firearms, and it applies to the "sane" in conflict situations where they can make snap judgements based on fear, emotions or merely perceived threat calculations. What i was intending to express was the opposite case; absent a perceived advantage, sane people tend to rely on other options such as avoidance, flight, whatever is available. IOW, they have to use their brains before hands. Insane people may not perceive their own limits, and may, in fact, have fewer (ask any beat cop about that, they deal with crazy/crazed people a lot).

                For example, two people in a conflict without weapons will tend to resort to violence later if at all, so it's a different, slower process with a less potentially lethal outcome. Put a weapons in the hands of one or both and the process changes and outcomes tend to be more lethal.

                Do you value law enough not to pass laws that won't be obeyed?
                I value law enough to pass laws that will certainly be disobeyed by some (just about any law you care to mention) but will produce some improvement if enforced, and I understand that often, laws do not produce immediate results particularly when change is dependent on cultural change - a slow process. And I also understand that in many cases, without laws, the cultural change will never get to critical mass.

                For example, to make progress on racism (a human, cultural problem), you have to outlaw some of the manifestations to change the status quo and create space for people to gain other experiences that heal the disease.  I don't see that any society has achieved a total cure, but some are doing a lot better and we have to give some credit to law.

                Civilization depends on a lot of things, laws are one part. I'm not about to give up on either.

                I'm not expecting change from A-Z in one step when it seems difficult to get to B. Z is a goal.

                Availability = Access.
                Accesss = Opportunity.
                Opportunity = Tragedy, accidental or otherwise.
                Statement of observable fact.
                Step-by-step, it must be done.
                Modest proposal.

                Thanks for your thoughtful feedback.

                What about my Daughter's future?

                by koNko on Thu Apr 11, 2013 at 05:32:25 AM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  may we continue to discuss this? (0+ / 0-)

                  I come from a very old-school family. My mom and dad were not tolerant, at all, of bullying or mistreatment or fraud. To that end, I grew up with something of a "you've got to stand for something or you'll fall for anything" attitude. Then at 18 I joined the Air Force. One of the core principles of the UCMJ is that you should recognize -- and refuse! -- an illegal order, if you are enlisted. If you are an officer or the senior person present, you should recognize, and not issue, an order that's illegal, or that cannot or will not be obeyed.

                  E.G.: the Air Force I served in could not have imagined the kind of mistreatment of prisoners we saw at Abu Ghraib.

                  I would also note that "weapon" is not the same thing as "arm" is not necessarily the same thing as "gun". That sounds as if I want to get into semantics, but ... well. In that conflict you mention, what if one person is a trained boxer or other martial artist? Is that sufficient advantage to overcome sanity?

                  LBJ, Lady Bird, Van Cliburn, Ike, Ann Richards, Barbara Jordan, Molly Ivins, Sully Sullenburger, Drew Brees: Texas is NO Bush League!

                  by BlackSheep1 on Thu Apr 11, 2013 at 03:21:26 PM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  Sure (0+ / 0-)

                    Sorry my late reply, busy this weekend.

                    All sorts of things can be deadly weapons, including words.

                    But I think modern guns are different than stones, knives and hands, which have other basic uses.

                    I'm also for the control of explosives, fighting swords and other things that present significant and inherent hazards and should not be freely distributed amongst the general public without strong precautions, qualifications and accountability, but I think these are regulated in the USA now. Perhaps if they were classified as "arms" with second amendment protection they would not.

                    But maybe a couple of examples illustrate my points:

                    Following the Oklahoma City Bombing, which was truly horrible, I believe regulations on sales of strongly oxidizing fertilizer were strengthened and color coding beads required to improve traceability in case it was misused, and I'm not aware of this becoming a "rights" issue or people claiming farmers would be subject to undue hardship. People seemed to accept it as reasonable. Stronger regulations of firearms are equally reasonable.

                    Going back a couple of years, there was a rash of attacks against school children in China including some copy-cat incidents, and parents here (I'm one) were as alarmed and outraged as Americans are about these school shootings, and calling for improved security in schools, better training for teachers and greater attention to and care for mentally ill, etc. But the difference is, all of these attacks were done with knives or sticks, so there were fewer fatalities and injuries compared the shootings in the US. I can even say in the case of the US, the teachers were better trained and prepared, and responded more expertly and heroically because of it, but the results have still been far worse because guns are simply more powerful and able to harm at long range. Of course, note that price guns are not allowed in China except is some very special circumstances. Even beat police don't carry them because they aren't needed.

                    So my bottom line case for gun control is they are simply dangerous and the defenses against them rather difficult in practical terms, so they should be strongly regulated.

                    And as I noted elsewhere, when/if they are allowed, training should be mandatory; we trust solders and police with guns because the training, discipline and security exercised lowers the risk.

                    At the time the second amendment was written, guns were actually pretty rare, inaccurate and slow; a good archer had a better chance of prevailing. That's no longer the case.

                    What about my Daughter's future?

                    by koNko on Sun Apr 14, 2013 at 08:46:28 AM PDT

                    [ Parent ]

                    •  @ the time of the Constitution rifling had (1+ / 0-)
                      Recommended by:
                      a2nite

                      begun making inroads (cf Daniel Boone, Kentucky gunmakers' flintlock masterpieces); muzzle-loading for most firearms was the rule.

                      But I know that trained boxers or karatekas are required to register their hands (and feet) as deadly weapons in some jurisdictions (not the one I live in).

                      As folks in Boston learned the hard way today, sadly, you can do an awful lot of damage without a firearm.

                      Good archers are still competent warriors; the advantages of silence and cheap reloads should not be understated. Swords are still out there, along with kitchen knives, daggers, cleavers, tomahawks, and similar edged tools -- and that doesn't count hatchets or logging axes.

                      I agree that we should train users -- and we should train nonusers to leave stuff alone too. Stringently; and require periodic retraining / testing to be sure that your users are still using their knowledge and tools properly.

                      LBJ, Lady Bird, Van Cliburn, Ike, Ann Richards, Barbara Jordan, Molly Ivins, Sully Sullenburger, Drew Brees: Texas is NO Bush League!

                      by BlackSheep1 on Mon Apr 15, 2013 at 04:29:21 PM PDT

                      [ Parent ]

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