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On October 16, 2008 at 2:15 PM, part-time college librarian Alan Godin walked into the library of Northeast Longview College in San Antonio.   He went to the desk of fellow librarian Devin Zimmerman, a well liked member of the library staff who was working on new ways to make the library more accessible to students with disabilities.   Mr. Godin put on a pair of shooting range ear protectors, pulled a handgun then shot and killed Mr. Zimmerman.    He then put the gun on a table, sat down and waited for the police to arrive.  He is currently being held on a $250,000.00 bond and his trial is scheduled to start at the end of the month.  

Mr. Godin’s gun did not kill Mr. Zimmerman.   Alan pulled the trigger and will pay for his crime.  But the gun did make it easier for him to kill his fellow co-worker.    Godin is 62 years old, 5’3" and weighs approximately 125 pounds.   He is not the type of person to participate in a physical altercation.  Without access to a firearm, there is a very good chance that Mr. Zimmerman would still be alive.

On October 8, 2009, Meleanie Hain was found dead in her home, the victim of a murder-suicide. Ms. Hain’s story was not necessarily noteworthy on a national level, on average over a 1000 women per year die at the hands of a spouse or lover from guns.  The NRA would like to tell you that if a woman is trained to use a firearm then she is safer than she is without one.    But the background of Ms. Hain would seem to argue that point.  Ms. Hain was a parole officer and former prison guard who gained notoriety in 2008 by attending her daughter’s soccer gun with a pistol strapped on her hip in plain sight.    The resulting uproar from other parents caused county officials to revoke her carry permit.   She successfully sued to get it back but it did little to help her on the night of her murder.  All of her training, her obvious comfort with firearms and her gun ownership failed to save her life.   One wonders if there had been no gun in her house would she be an abuse statistic as opposed to a homicide statistic.

I missed the Godin story when it originally happened.    It was quick "filler" for national news but sadly, school shootings that result in only one death no longer get national coverage.   There are simply too many of them.   But I have thought of it often over the past year.   You see, Alan Godin was once a good friend of mine.   I confess that I have no idea what happened during the years we lost touch to bring him to a point where he would take another man’s life.  

This is the point where I am supposed to rail against American’s love of guns!   I’m supposed to point out that if we could get rid of all guns in America, then we would all live safer lives.   And that’s true to a degree...IF you actually could get rid of all guns.    But that won’t happen because the problems are two fold.    

One is a legal issue.  Americans have a right to bear arms according to the Constitution.   Now you can argue that this was a right never intended as an individual right but as the right of the state to arm a militia.   But the Supreme Court has disagreed with that interpretation which pretty much eliminates the possibility of any ban from a legal standpoint.  

The second problem is pragmatic.    Gun bans don’t work!   The old bumper sticker is still true, "WHEN GUNS ARE OUTLAWED ONLY OUTLAWS WILL HAVE GUNS".    In an age of the "disposable culture", guns are the one item we make that is made to last FOREVER!    The pistol your grandfather bought in 1950 is still capable of firing accurately some 60 years later if it’s been well cared for.    Firearms are handed down from generation to generation in America.   An unbelievable number of the firearms produced over the last 50 years are still out there waiting to be fired.  Wishing they would go away won’t make them disappear.  To say nothing of the 4.5 million NEW firearms sold EACH year in the US.

Acknowledging the impossibility of enforcing a total ban however should not suggest that increasing or enforcing regulation of firearms is also impossible.   Likewise we should not assert that regulations cannot contribute to the public safety.

And guns are a matter of public safety.   On average, each day in America some 276 people are shot.  One out of every three American homes owns a gun.  And while many are for home protection, the reality is that those guns are four times more likely to be used in an unintentional shooting than to be used for self defense.  These are facts that can be looked at in two ways.   You can scream about the horror of the accidental shootings or you can be grateful that you had a weapon when someone broke into your home.    The odds are against your gun actually helping you during a break-in, but if you are that 1 out of 4 who successfully injures another person with a firearm in self-defense, you tend to be grateful for your right to own a gun.

But there are things that can be done to keep guns out of the hands of criminals and children.  (Who are most often injured accidentally by guns.  Over 4,000 children  under the age of 19 were injured accidentally by guns in 2007.)    

First and foremost:   Lock your guns in a gun safe! This simple act of responsibility will do more to cut injuries than any legislation or ban ever could.  A gun safe keeps guns out of the hands of your children and will help prevent them from being stolen from your home.   That’s where a huge percentage of criminals get their guns.   They steal them from people who bought them for home protection.   Sometimes they break into your home to steal them and sometimes they are stolen by a relative who has ready access to your home.   The 18 states that have laws on the books requiring safe storage of weapons have on average  26.3% fewer gun thefts than states without such laws.

Perhaps we should examine making gun owners liable for any injuries caused by a gun NOT stored in a safe.   If your kid’s best friend starts playing with your pistol and someone gets shot, make the gun owner responsible for the financial burden.  Much like a car owner is responsible for damages done by an uninsured vehicle he owns.   It might sound crazy, but it would help make people think responsibly about their gun ownership.

We can also enforce the current laws that are already on the books.    Specifically, let’s look at gun shows. The ATF estimates that approximately 30% of illegally trafficked firearms come from gun shows. Federal law requires ANYONE (whether a licensed gun dealer or a private citizen) to refuse to sell a firearm to anyone they suspect of not being unable to pass a back ground check.  Recently, Mayor Bloomberg of New York City commissioned an investigation of gun sales at gun shows.  When undercover "buyers" approached 30 sellers in a variety of states, they agreed on the price to the gun and pointed out that they probably couldn’t pass a background check.  Nineteen of those "sellers" went ahead with the sale after being told the "buyer" couldn’t pass the required background check.   It’s a clear violation of the law, but it is not something that is often enforced by ATF.  It needs to be!

Now the NRA is extremely upset about this "sting" operation.    They insist that it’s wrong of New York City to try to regulate gun sales that originate out of their jurisdiction.    New York City has some of the toughest laws on the books regarding gun sales and extremely severe penalties regarding crimes using guns.    As a result, New York Criminals often do not get guns from within the city limits of New York City.   In fact, the ATF estimates that 89% of guns used to commit crimes in New York City come from out of state gun shows!  In other words, their regulations decrease the number of crimes committed using guns purchased illegally within New York.   Unfortunately it is still extremely easy to go to less regulated states to purchase guns to bring back to New York City to commit crimes with  This is why New York City Mayor Bloomberg supports changes in federal law to standardize the rules by which all guns are sold throughout America.

Americans will never get rid of their guns.   As that other famous NRA bumper sticker puts it, "THEY CAN HAVE MY GUN WHEN THEY PRY IT FROM MY COLD DEAD HAND".     Right of ownership however is not a reason to abdicate the responsibility for those weapons.    These three simple steps:  1) enacting nation wide safe storage laws, 2) enforcing current legislation and 3) standardizing the rules for gun sales nation wide won’t solve every problem associated with guns in America....but it's a good place to start.  

Sadly, two case examples I listed earlier would both have been totally unaffected by these changes.   Both Mr. Zimmerman and Ms. Hanes would still be dead from gun violence even if these three suggestions were being met.  My friend Alan would still be facing a jury next week. The children of the Hains will still be orphans.   Tomorrow someone may die from gun violence in your city.  Some child will end up fighting for his life somewhere because his friend wanted to show him Dad's cool gun.  But maybe with a little work and without the NRA's kneejerk reaction against any and  ALL legislation, we can avoid SOME of these accidents.   This is not about a perfect solution, instead it is about making an impossible situation better.   Nothing more and nothing less.  Pragmatic but not perfect.

Originally posted to nemokc on Thu Oct 15, 2009 at 07:39 PM PDT.

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Comment Preferences

    •  I'm thinking of doing a diary on a set of rules / (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      murrayewv, Pluto, playtonjr, satanicpanic

      gun control .
      Gun owners have been asked and they will not lift a finger other than to say fuck you .
      America has a problem and the gun owners just could not care less . "Well regulated" might as well be blue cheese for all they care .
      80ish a day dead from guns in the USA
      300ish a day wounded a day from guns in the USA
      Each and every day , day in and day out , over and over and over .

      Oh , and if you were not expecting it ,
      the gun nuts are going to be flinging all sort of crap at you asap . Don't let it bother you .

      "Wind is a total waste of money." davidwalters Oct 4 09

      by indycam on Thu Oct 15, 2009 at 07:51:38 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  nice ad hominem (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        oldpunk

        the gun nuts are going to be flinging all sort of crap at you asap

        "Gun nuts."  Nice term.  Does so much to enhance your cred.  

          •  reclaimed pejoratives, anybody? (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Marja E

            Oh my god – you have the google.  I guess that settles everything.  

            Look, I shouldn’t have to school you about reclaimed pejoratives.  

            "Queer," "fag," "dyke," "Yid," "nigga," etc.  

            The common property of a reclaimed pejorative is that the user of a reclaimed word should either be within the group described or very, very, closely (and obviously) aligned with it.  

            Queer Nation is credited with starting the process of reclaiming the word "queer," which, previously, was only used in a pejorative sense.    See also http://www.examiner.com/...

            True, long ago, in the 1950s, when women stayed at home and cops were allowed (expected) to hassle uppity negroes, some shooters self-identified using the term "gun nut."  And it's true that some people still use that term to self-describe.  

            But I don't, you aren’t in the club, and your intent is to be disrespectful.  So please refrain from using the term.  

            You say that firearms-owners will, with regards to firearms crimes and/or negligent injuries and deaths:

            not lift a finger other than to say fuck you.

            Not lift a finger?  I’ve spent many an hour teaching safety basics to Pink Pistols novices.

            Are you suggesting that queers, fags, dykes and firearms are un-mixy things, or are you saying the volunteering time to teach basic safety doesn't qualify as "lifting a finger?"

            You go on to say that:

            America has a problem and the gun owners just could not care less.

            Let’s see here . . . .  I know there is a problem.  I care about it.  You're gonna hurt my feelings if you discount whether I do or do not care about something.  Didn't anybody ever teach you that hurting somebody else's feelings is naughty?  

            Frankly I’d expect you to acknowledge that DKos users, whatever their political Cartesian coordinates, are generally sufficiently reasoned in their beliefs to not deserve the appellation of "nut."  

            But you don't.  Which leaves me with calling you a fascist hoplophobe.  And I don’t think anybody has bothered to reclaim the term "fascist."  At least not yet.  

            •  So you think you own the words (0+ / 0-)

              and only you can you them ?
              Good luck with that .

              You taught gun safety ?
              Wow thats wonderful ,
              how many fewer gun deaths and wounding did that result in .  
              We in the USA are at 80ish a day dead and 300ish a day wounded , if you taught every last one of them your gun safety class , what would the new death and wounded numbers per day be ?
              Your teaching gun safety is nothing in face of the real world problem .
              You offer nothing .

              "Are you suggesting that queers, fags, dykes and firearms are un-mixy things, or are you saying the volunteering time to teach basic safety doesn't qualify as "lifting a finger?""
              Are you suggesting that you are insane by formulating this question ?

              "fascist" ?
              Typical .

              "Wind is a total waste of money." davidwalters Oct 4 09

              by indycam on Fri Oct 16, 2009 at 09:41:59 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  so, you think safety training is pointless? (0+ / 0-)

                You taught gun safety ?
                Wow thats wonderful ,

                You said "gun nuts" won't

                lift a finger other than to say fuck you.

                In rebuttal I offered something I've done that is, objectively, more than lifting a finger.  And, as much as I wanted to, I refrained from saying "fuck you."  

                Now, I'll have to extrapolate here.  Assuming that "gun nuts" are essentially wingers, by your reasoning they probably wouldn't be very GLBT-friendly, right?  

                Pink Pistols is a group advocating defensive firearms training for homosexuals ("Armed Gays Don't Get Bashed" is one of their slogans).  So you might consider it a public service for people like me -- who are proponents of marriage equality RFN and generally care fuck-all what somebody's sexual orientation is -- to offer that training for free.    

                how many fewer gun deaths and wounding did that result in .

                We'll never know, because we don't keep records on the numbers of accidents averted.  I'll contend that avoiding even one is a positive ROI.  

                We in the USA are at 80ish a day dead and 300ish a day wounded ,

                Check your facts.  According to the Brady Center, in 2006 there were 10,177 firearms deaths in the U.S.  That's 27.882191780821917808219178082192 per day.  You're only off by 286%.  

                I have no idea about the numbers of injuries per day.  If you have a legitimate link, I'll take a look.  

                if you taught every last one of them your gun safety class , what would the new death and wounded numbers per day be ?
                Your teaching gun safety is nothing in face of the real world problem .

                Okay, now the only possible inference is that you're claiming safety training offers nothing.  Does this apply to auto safety?  Seat-belt PSAs?  How about safe sex education?  

                Or is it personal?  

                You offer nothing .

                Are you saying that I have nothing to offer by way of safety training?  I'd really prefer you make it personal, because then I could add "asshole" to "fascist."  

                •   "You're only off by 286%." ? (0+ / 0-)

                  "If you have a legitimate link, I'll take a look."

                  Don't just have a look , buy a copy or a few copies , keep one on your desk , give the rest away to your friends , read it and reread it .  
                  http://www.press.umich.edu/...
                  "On an average day in the United States, guns are used to kill almost eighty people, and to wound nearly three hundred more. If any other consumer product had this sort of disastrous effect, the public outcry would be deafening; yet when it comes to guns such facts are accepted as a natural consequence of supposedly high American rates of violence."

                  "Now, I'll have to extrapolate here.  Assuming that "gun nuts" are essentially wingers, by your reasoning they probably wouldn't be very GLBT-friendly, right?"

                  Now thats some wild ass assuming .
                  Since you are into extrapolating and assuming ,
                  you feel free to make up all sort of insane things .
                  Nice game . Since you play theses games , that tells me all I want to know about you .
                  You are lost in make believe . You think teaching a class on gun safety does something but you are lacking in the basic knowledge . You think teaching people how to handle a gun is the same as getting the number of dead and wounded to drop ?
                  Do you do rain dances also ?

                  And as for your little insults , thats all about you and your mindset .

                  "Wind is a total waste of money." davidwalters Oct 4 09

                  by indycam on Sat Oct 17, 2009 at 08:26:31 AM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  now you're insulting religion (0+ / 0-)

                    Do you do rain dances also ?

                    Paganism, Wicca and any number of folk religions involve rain dances.  Respecting the religious beliefs of others is a progressive value that I believe is strongly encouraged on DKos.  

                    You think teaching a class on gun safety does something

                    I'm unaware of any statistics comparing the rate of injury of persons who have had safety training against a control group, so I will have to resort to anecdotal evidence based on hundreds of thousands of injury-free rounds I've seen sent down-range by people who have had safety training.  How do know that they have safety training?  I won't shoot at a range unless I'm required to present proof of safety training.  

                    And keep in mind that such controlled studies would have to compare the rate of injury of persons who have had safety training against a control group of persons who have not.  General statistics about rates of death and injury are irrelevant to your fundamental argument that firearms safety training is ineffectual.  

                    I've provided evidence, you haven't.  Unless you invalidate the statistical significance of my anecdotal evidence or successfully rebut it with evidence of statistics from peer-reviewed controlled studies, you lose that point.

                    You think teaching people how to handle a gun is the same as getting the number of dead and wounded to drop ?

                    Unless you can prove that comparable safety training has been unsuccessful, e.g., safe-sex instruction has not reduced the incidence of HIV transmission and seat-belt PSAs have not reduced the incidence and severity of automobile injuries, you lose this point. I'll point out the obvious and note that comparability is an assumption that is outside the scope of this discussion.  

                    Would you claim that "teaching people how to handle" a condom has been unsuccessful in reducing the transmission rate of HIV?  I don't think you'd claim that, and I don't even like you.  

                    How about personal opinion?

                    In my opinion, it would take less than 5 minutes to teach you, indycam, the basic safety rules.  In light of your personal concern about firearms safety, I would happily wager cash money that you, indycam, would thereafter be VERY safe in administrative handling.  In other words, you would clear and safe any weapon handed to you and then lay it on the ground.  

                       

                    "Now, I'll have to extrapolate here.  Assuming that "gun nuts" are essentially wingers, by your reasoning they probably wouldn't be very GLBT-friendly, right?"

                    Now thats some wild ass assuming .

                    Making arguendo assumptions is both rhetorically and logically valid.  The conclusion is invalid only to the extent the assumption is invalid.  As an aside, do you think that most "gun nuts" are GLBT-friendly?  Here's some traffic from Glocktalk.com titled "Queering our schools" showing that at least some users there are pretty scared of the gays.  

                    Moreover, even if my assumption is incorrect, your point about my "wild-ass assuming" nonetheless remains irrelevant because I have successfully rebutted your fundamental contention that "gun nuts" won't:

                    lift a finger [about firearms-related death or injury] other than to say fuck you.

                    For your counterargument to have any validity, you, indycam, would have to exclude me from the set of "gun nuts," which term you still have not defined.  

                    I am inferring from your tone that you mean for your term "gun nut" to include all firearms owners.  Unless this inference is incorrect I have empirically disproven your argument that "gun nuts" won't lift a finger in the interests of safety by providing proof that somebody within your definition of "gun nut" has, in fact, done more than lift a finger.  

                    To the extent Pink Pistols was included in that anecdote, I did so to rebut any possible implication by you that firearms owners cannot be progressive.  If you’re not implying that, just remove "Pink Pistols" from the anecdote and my rebuttal of your "lifting a finger" argument remains valid.  The presence on DKos of many progressive firearms owners should, however, prevent you from making such implication.  

                    Thanks for the link, BTW.  You should forward it to Brady so they can update their facts. Really, I'm sincere about this.  

                  •  your book suggests safety training is effective (0+ / 0-)

                    I haven't been able to run out and buy it yet, but the precis from U Mich Press states:

                    "David Hemenway fair-mindedly and authoritatively demonstrates how a public-health approach-which emphasizes prevention over punishment, and which has been so successful in reducing the rates of injury and death from infectious disease, car accidents, and tobacco consumption-CAN BE APPLIED TO GUN VIOLENCE."  (emphasis added)

                    Is the publisher talking out its ass, or does Professor Hemenway in fact demonstrate how risk-mitigation techniques that have been effective with infectious disease, car accidents and tobacco can be applied to gun violence?

                    Because if that's what he does, your entire argument that

                    teaching gun safety is nothing in face of the real world problem

                    is, according to Professor Hemenway, full of shit.  

                    Wow.  Didn't I also analogize safety training WRT infectious disease and car accidents to firearms safety training?  Yeah, but you didn't reply to that.  

                    •  Read it again (0+ / 0-)

                      and show me exactly where it says gun safety class ?
                      You think you found something , but you only think you have , its not what you dream it is .
                      I have read the book , have you ?
                      No , you have not !
                      You are just making things up as you go along , you twist things what ever way you want just to try to justify yourself .
                      Good luck getting back in touch with the real world .
                      I no longer wish to have anything to do with you at all in any way , you are not worth even talking to .

                      "Wind is a total waste of money." davidwalters Oct 4 09

                      by indycam on Sat Oct 17, 2009 at 02:51:31 PM PDT

                      [ Parent ]

            •  "gun nuts" on DKos . (0+ / 0-)

              "Wind is a total waste of money." davidwalters Oct 4 09

              by indycam on Fri Oct 16, 2009 at 09:52:06 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

    •  er (0+ / 0-)

      On January 1st, 2009, Oscar Grant was shot in the head by someone lawfully wielding such a lethal weapon.

  •  I Think this Best Represents (9+ / 0-)

    ...the true spirit of the American Intellect:

    Still, a worthwhile Diary on a difficult topic.

  •  Guns will be around for a long time (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    satanicpanic, csquared

    But there is one way to drastically reduce the number carried around.  Draconian carry laws.  Simply put, 10 years if you are found with a gun--period.  20 if associated with even a minor crime.

    The idea here is to make it too costly for run-the-mill burglars, muggers, street dealers to carry guns (let em' use knives and clubs like in the good old days).  Of course, this law it would do nothing about those folks that intend to kill someone.

    Just a thought.

    "Empty vessels make the loudest sound, they have the least wit and are the greatest blabbers" Plato

    by Empty Vessel on Thu Oct 15, 2009 at 08:03:06 PM PDT

  •  Get ready for the raving KABA assholes (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    satanicpanic, MNGrandma
    to descend.

    Tipped and emphatically recced.

    "We did not come to fear the future. We came here to shape it." - Obama

    by glower on Thu Oct 15, 2009 at 08:04:20 PM PDT

    •  that's "RKBA" assholes to you (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      debedb

      Again, as with indycam, real nice ad hominem.  

      I actually liked the diary.  

      Private sellers who sell to private buyers whom they have reason to believe are prohibited persons are committing a crime.  

      Cf. Private sellers who sell to private buyers whom they do not have reason to believe are prohibited persons are acting lawfully, provided that applicable state law permits non-DROS FTF transfers.  

  •  Well done diary (7+ / 0-)

    Very tough topic and while I don't agree on every point, it is not necessary that I do. The important thing is that you've articulated a very smart perspective on how Democrats should approach the subject of gun control.

    Every day's another chance to stick it to The Man. - dls.

    by The Raven on Thu Oct 15, 2009 at 08:16:14 PM PDT

  •  I read a comment by one of those front pagers (5+ / 0-)

    once that went something along the lines of, "I'd trade my gun for universal health care".

    New gallup came out showing even greater support of gun "rights".

    Gallup with video

    Personaly I'd like laws like Canada, same portion of ownership, tiny fraction of the deaths, still free to go blast a moose and cook it up.

    "Don't fall or we both go" Derek Hersey

    by ban nock on Thu Oct 15, 2009 at 08:17:12 PM PDT

  •  deterrence is a factor (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    debedb

    And while many are for home protection, the reality is that those guns are four times more likely to be used in an unintentional shooting than to be used for self defense.  

    this statistic may be true, but there's also a deterrence effect, especially when a large percentage of the population is armed.

    For example, let's take rural areas:

    it may be 20 minutes to the nearest police station.  So you'd think they'd have a huge problem with burglars? Well, not really. You'd have to be crazy to rob a house in rural America, they've got more guns out there than people.  So they don't see a lot of crime, which, ironically, means that they hardly ever use their guns for self-defense.  But if they didn't have those guns, they'd be sitting ducks.

    But it's still a good diary. You're correct that getting rid of America's guns is impossible for practical purposes. and encouraging gun safety can't be a bad thing.

  •  Man has thrown rock at man for a long time (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    debedb

    Don't expect it to change, or for the rules to change either.

     I  do agree with a lot of your points, especially the keep the guns in a gun safe and if you own a firearm be prepared to learn safety.

    But as far as new gun laws, never going to happen.
    Too many states have proven that conceiled carry works.

    Just my opinion.

    Read to your kids..... "I am the slime oozin out From your tv set" F.Zappa

    by Tadly on Thu Oct 15, 2009 at 08:50:22 PM PDT

  •  Many years ago (4+ / 0-)

    I was about 8 when a classmate accidentally shot and killed her little sister.  I wholeheartedly agree with laws mandating gun storage.

  •  Look at the amount of killings that are taking (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    playtonjr, MNGrandma

    place in the homes, schools and streets of the nation.  Weapons carried, both concealed and openly, around the President by those that seek to cause dissent.  A diary was posted earlier this week that showed gun dealers openly selling guns to undercover operatives that stated point blank that they could not pass a background check. When and how do we make the madness cease?

  •  Re: "safe storage" laws (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    debedb, Nathan45

    It's kind of pointless to buy a gun to protect your home if you're going to be required to keep it locked in a safe, where it will be utterly useless in the event that a dangerous intruder breaks into your house.  I'm sure that's probably part of the reason that some gun-control supporters want "safe storage" laws.

    -7.12, -7.54 / "Health care reform will never take place until Rahm Emanuel is strangled with the entrails of Frank Luntz." - Diderot

    by Big Tex on Thu Oct 15, 2009 at 09:10:43 PM PDT

    •  Other "pointless" things (0+ / 0-)

      Sure it's pointless to lock a gun up that you are keeping for protection.   But it's equally pointless to have a loaded gun lying around when you are not there to use it.

      If you're not there to pull the trigger, the gun is useless to you.   It is however there waiting for a child to pick it up to show it to a friend or for a thief to steal from you.  

      I know a cop who every night before he goes to bed, unlocks his safe & removes a loaded pistol.  Every morning when he wakes up, he locks it away.  It's a pain, BUT he is assured that no one is going to steal it when he leaves for work in the morning.  He knows that his kid isn't going to grab it.  (And yes, he's told his kid to NEVER touch the gun....did you ALWAYS mind your dad?)

      For that matter, it only takes a few seconds to unlock a gun safe.  (4 buttons to press)  I don't know where you currently keep your gun, but my father always kept his on the top shelf of the closet behind the Playboys which were hid by some sweaters.  (I know this because I didn't always mind my dad)  How long would it take him to open the closet door, move the sweaters, reach behind the Playboys to get the box the gun was in?  Personally, I prefer a safe!

      •  Not equally pointless (0+ / 0-)

        Sure it's pointless to lock a gun up that you are keeping for protection.  But it's equally pointless to have a loaded gun lying around when you are not there to use it.

        If you're not there to pull the trigger, the gun is useless to you.  It is however there waiting for a child to pick it up to show it to a friend or for a thief to steal from you.

        By this logic, we should require people to lock their steak knives up in a safe too, since they're also of no use to you when you're not there to use them and potentially dangerous in the wrong hands.  I'm sure there are any number of other potentially dangerous household items about which the same thing could be said.

        The more sensible solution to the hypothetical problem of a child picking up a firearm and showing it to his friends is to (1) find a good place to leave your firearms and not just leave them lying around anywhere, which can be done without locking them up in a safe; and more importantly, (2) taking the time and energy to teach a child proper handling of, and respect for, firearms.

        As for deterring thieves, I don't have an answer to that, but I think the video clips in the comment below this demonstrate that the idea of keeping guns locked in a safe as a deterrent to theft is an illusion at best.  And it may only take a few seconds to unlock a safe under normal conditions, but when you're in a stressful and possibly life-or-death situation, it may take a lot longer, especially if your mind blanks and causes you to have trouble remembering the safe combination.

        We should do what liberals do in other areas and let people decide for themselves what's right for their own personal situation regarding the guns they own.  It would be far more productive to encourage gun owners to take safety classes teaching them how to use and own a gun responsibly.

        -7.12, -7.54 / "Health care reform will never take place until Rahm Emanuel is strangled with the entrails of Frank Luntz." - Diderot

        by Big Tex on Fri Oct 16, 2009 at 10:59:35 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  you mean "safe storage" like this? (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Big Tex

      Or did you mean gun safes?


       Note the voices in these videos, they are all kids.

      "It's a dog eat dog world out there, and I am wearing Milkbone underwear." Norm Peterson

      by playtonjr on Fri Oct 16, 2009 at 04:05:06 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  The rest of the world thinks you're crazy (0+ / 0-)

    People walking around with guns, assault weapons available, guns allowed at universities, national parks and now in some states bars.  All of the deterrent or protection arguments in the world are blown apart by your violent crime stats, gun crimes and school shootings.  This is the day of satellite tv and the internet.  The world used to thing the US was like a Fred Astaire movie.  Now they see reality in real time--Iraq, Katrina, teabaggers,health care, Glen Beck and Rush Limbaugh and guns, guns, guns.  

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