Regarding guns

“Well, I like the American culture, such as it is, but let’s get rid of the f–king guns.”
– Kurt Vonnegut

Ezra Klein: “Twelve facts about guns and mass shootings in the United States”

If roads were collapsing all across the United States, killing dozens of drivers, we would surely see that as a moment to talk about what we could do to keep roads from collapsing. If terrorists were detonating bombs in port after port, you can be sure Congress would be working to upgrade the nation’s security measures. If a plague was ripping through communities, public-health officials would be working feverishly to contain it.

Only with gun violence do we respond to repeated tragedies by saying that mourning is acceptable but discussing how to prevent more tragedies is not. “Too soon,” howl supporters of loose gun laws. But as others have observed, talking about how to stop mass shootings in the aftermath of a string of mass shootings isn’t “too soon.” It’s much too late.

Joshua Holland: “Yes, we can have sane gun control”

Given the rather significant divide between the NRA’s positions and the views held by most of its members, there appears to be ample political space to the organization’s “left” to advocate reasonable gun controls on behalf of American gun owners – people who cherish the basic right to bear arms but also recognize that allowing drunken bar patrons to carry concealed weapons is just stupid.

Such an effort could go a long way toward convincing reasonable gun owners who have been deceived by the NRA’s brazen lies into believing that someone’s out to get their guns, and that’s really the only way that we’ll ever be able to have a serious discussion about safe and responsible gun ownership.

David Frum: “Every Day is the Day to Talk About Gun Control”

I’ll accept no lectures about “sensitivity” on days of tragedy like today from people who work the other 364 days of the year against any attempt to prevent such tragedies.

It’s bad enough to have a gun lobby. It’s the last straw when that lobby also sets up itself as the civility police. It may not be politically possible to do anything about the prevalence of weapons of mass murder. But it damn well ought to be possible to complain about them – and about the people who condone them.

Adam Gopnik: “Newtown and the Madness of Guns”

After the Aurora killings, I did a few debates with advocates for the child-killing lobby — sorry, the gun lobby — and, without exception and with a mad vehemence, they told the same old lies: it doesn’t happen here more often than elsewhere (yes, it does); more people are protected by guns than killed by them (no, they aren’t — that’s a flat-out fabrication); guns don’t kill people, people do; and all the other perverted lies that people who can only be called knowing accessories to murder continue to repeat, people who are in their own way every bit as twisted and crazy as the killers whom they defend. (That they are often the same people who pretend outrage at the loss of a single embryo only makes the craziness still crazier.)

So let’s state the plain facts one more time, so that they can’t be mistaken: Gun massacres have happened many times in many countries, and in every other country, gun laws have been tightened to reflect the tragedy and the tragic knowledge of its citizens afterward. In every other country, gun massacres have subsequently become rare. In America alone, gun massacres, most often of children, happen with hideous regularity, and they happen with hideous regularity because guns are hideously and regularly available.

The people who fight and lobby and legislate to make guns regularly available are complicit in the murder of those children.

  • http://www.facebook.com/matt.mcirvin Matt McIrvin

    “The pro-gun people hold all the cards politically.  You guys have won.
    Yet you’re still paranoid about crypto-gun-banners[...]”

    Looking at the longer game, this may be a reasonable worry for them. They’ve won, in the sense that gun control has been politically radioactive for years. But the fraction of Americans who actually own guns has been decreasing for decades; most Americans do not have direct experience with them, and gun manufacturers are getting their sales from existing gun owners buying more guns.

    At some point, just the demographics of the situation will cause political attitudes to change. If not now, then someday.

  • arcseconds

     Surely the answer to the ‘can the government fiscally afford to enforce gun laws?’ question is obvious.

    Fund it through a tax on guns and ammunition.

    It seems quite reasonable to me to expect an industry to pay for the social costs incurred by the existence of that industry.  You can pry my alchohol from my cold, dead hands, but I’m quite happy to pay tax on that alcohol to fund alcohol treatment programmes, policing of liquor laws, etc, even though I might not benefit from those things directly myself.

    Of course, if the tax is too high it’ll help illegal sales, but it should be possible to do this in a way that achieves the aims.

    I agree with you about the drugs thing, by the way, or at least, I agree there’s a strong argument to decriminalize.   There’s an organisation of law enforcement officers (LEAP) who think so, too.  It’s  psychologically difficult for most people to every day dedicate their lives to pursuing policies they think are a waste of time,  so the existence of this organisation itself should prompt us to at least listen to their arguments.

    The fellow I heard suggested the same thing about drugs: tax them enough to fund treatment programmes, etc.

    http://www.leap.cc/about/who-we-are/

  • OriginalExtraCrispy

     “Honestly, a lot of our society’s problems with guns is the fact that we
    let people buy guns, but do little to educate them about the proper
    storage of guns and the hazards of leaving them in a place where
    unstable individuals could have ready access to them.”

    We don’t even educate people on the four basic gun safety laws*. Look at the cover of any book with a character holding a gun (or a movie poster). How often do you see the character with their finger on the trigger, no matter in what direction the gun is pointed? I swear it’s 9 times out of 10. No one knows anything about them, how to safely handle them, or what they’re capable/not capable of.

    *For those who don’t know these–which everyone should, even if they never think they’ll be around guns. That way, if you do end up around someone who’s holding a gun, you’ll know if they’re being safe with it.

    #1: The Gun Is Always Loaded!

    #2: Never Point The Gun At Something You Are Not
    Prepared To Destroy!

    #3: Always Be Sure Of Your Target And What Is Behind It!

    #4: Keep Your Finger Off The Trigger Until Your Sights Are
    On The Target!http://www.reloadammo.com/gun-law.htm

  • Madhabmatics

     whoah, was there homophobia in the Dosadi Experiment? I haven’t read that since I was a little kid, spoil it for me please

    (The thing that made me go :gonk: about herbert was how many times “HEY GUYS, GUYS, I TURNED THIS WOMAN INTO AN UNTHINKING WOMB” comes up as a plot point in his books)

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Charity-Brighton/100002974813787 Charity Brighton

    I think if we’re at the level where anyone can seriously argue protecting kids from being shot at an elementary school is beyond our financial resources (as the richest country on Earth!) then maybe we might as well just pack it in and admit that we deserve these things. Why not make cuts elsewhere if the financial situation is that dire? I’m sure we can pare back some of our military spending and do something to rein in healthcare spending. 

    We could even borrow some ideas from Canada or Western European countries. It’s not a perfect fit since every country is different, but I don’t buy this idea that America is somehow uniquely incapable of addressing any social or economic issue. 

  • arcseconds

     All the more reason to engage in constructive dialogue now, while they hold the aces.  

    Shutting down any attempt at questioning the status quo with hysteria is an effective (if deplorable) tactic if you can be sure of staying in power, but it’s not likely to generate any goodwill, sympathy or understanding of your position with others, and it legitimizes the use of those tactics by all.

    What you want to do instead is to use your current power to make yourself to seem as reasonable and as sympathetic as possible, and engaging in dialogue with those that aren’t in power now but still will be is a good way to do that.  It also normalizes that behaviour, which is more useful behaviour for you when you’re not in power.

    Also, if you think that a regulatory framework is likely to be inevitable, then perhaps you should implement one now, while you’re still in power.  That way you should be able to get acceptable levels of freedom for yourself, while giving enough to the others so that they don’t feel too inclined to change things while they’re in power. 

    If they inherit a situation which is mostly OK, they might well take an ‘ain’t broke, don’t fix it’ approach, but if it’s the current mess, they might be inclined to fix it in a way you don’t like.

  • arcseconds

     

    I don’t buy this idea that America is somehow uniquely incapable of addressing any social or economic issue.

    American exceptionalism — in reverse gear!

  • http://blog.trenchcoatsoft.com Ross

     Well, one of the people yelling at me on twitter tonight claims that scholars have proven that guns save literally twice as many people as they kill in the US each year.

    I’m not sure how exactly anyone would prove this, and also, I think if guns save more people thanthey kill that would, technically, count as the guns having utterly failed, killing kinda being the raison d’etre of a gun.

  • http://blog.trenchcoatsoft.com Ross

    So many times today I’ve been told that “If only some of the teachers had guns, they could have prevented this.”

    Of course, we know one teacher did own guns. Those guns were the ones used in the massacre.

    Part of me wants to shout “Fine. We will arm elementary school teachers. And if you’re right, great. But the first fucking time this leads to someone dying, every one of you who advocated it gets executed on the spot. Via bullet to the stomach.”

    I don’t like feeling like this.

  • http://blog.trenchcoatsoft.com Ross

     I do find myself wondering if there is any measurable difference between homes successfully saved from invasion by the owner brandishing a gun, and homes saved from invasion by an unarmed owner shouting “I’ve got a gun.”

  • Lori

     

      The same way we demonize pro-lifers by calling them anti-choicers? Gun grabbers is apt for their advocacy.   

    Your logic skills need some serious work. I hope to FSM that your gun skills are better because if they’re not you’re a danger to yourself and others.

  • Lori

    But what else am I to think when laws are passed that make life more
    difficult for us legal gun owners, while criminals simply go on the
    black market and bypass the law altogether?   

    One thing you might want to think about is how those guns get onto the black market. This will likely change as 3D printing technology evolves (FSM help us all), but at this point the vast majority of guns on the black market are not manufactured for the black market. So, how do they get there? It’s not magic. Somewhere in the chain of ‘responsible” gun manufacturers, sellers and buyers/owners guns move from the legal market to the illicit market. You know, those responsible people. The one’s we’re never supposed to question and who can’t be fairly regulated in any meaningful way without bringing on the dawn of a dark, freedomless age.  Those people.

    I have said several times and I continue to say, I am not categorically opposed to guns or gun ownership. Something has to change though and I’m totally out of patience with this notion that there’s nothing we can do about the situation because everyone who wants to do something about it is a brainless, bleeding heart looking to Take All The Guns. That shit is really starting to trigger my slap reflex.

  • EllieMurasaki

    The shooter’s mother wasn’t a teacher after all, apparently. Despite all the stories saying she was. What do they teach them about fact-checking in these schools?

    I’m with you on the gut shot for people who advocate arming teachers, to be fired asap after the first death caused by having armed teachers. I don’t like it either, but you know as well as I do that that first fatality is going to be an elementary school kid. Abusive teachers do, after all, exist.

  • Lori

     

    Or thinking the gun was a toy when its owner left it out or its cabinet
    unlocked, then shooting their small self or equally small sibling or
    friend.  

    Or knowing that it’s not a toy and pulling it out to show it off to a friend because a gun is just so cool, and shooting the friend to death by accident.

    The dead kid was the 14 year old son of our backyard neighbors while I was in college. The owners of the gun swore up and down that they had taught their son proper gun safety and that he knew better than to play with it and that the gun had been  stored properly. I have no reason to think they were lying about that, but they were tragically mistaken. I have no idea where that boy is now, but assuming he’s still alive, whatever else he has done with his life he is and always will be a guy who shot his best friend in the head.

  • Lori

     

    At some point, just the demographics of the situation will cause political attitudes to change. If not now, then someday.  

    It’s incredibly depressing how many things seem to lead back to “Well, eventually they’ll die off and if the rest of us can just manage to outlast them maybe we can get a decent country.”

  • Sgt. Pepper’s Bleeding Heart

    Your brain is the much larger organ higher up.

  • Daughter

     Again, a great comment by a reader of TNC’s blog. The person said something like, law enforcement and military personnel do their jobs in a state of vigilance, on the lookout for signs of violence, because they have to. But teachers don’t generally exist in that state. Even if you arm them, how quickly do you expect a teacher to go from reading and doing math problems, to suddenly being ready to take down an armed shooter? Most people aren’t able to change gears that quickly. And how easily accessible and ready to fire do you want guns to be, in a classroom of small, curious children?

  • Sgt. Pepper’s Bleeding Heart

    If people who identify pro-life actually were, they would be vehemently in favor of measures that let someone who is unexpectedly pregnant keep the baby without falling into poverty. They Many are not.

  • Lori

    My favorite quote so far about the arm-all-the-teachers nonsense is from a commenter at Lawyers, Guns & Money, which was highlighted in a post titled “Time to arm the union thugs”: 

    So I’m a teacher. According to conservative orthodoxy, I’m a parasite on the public’s dime who is only interested in indoctrinating the precious children of America into communism or atheism or whatever. I can’t be trusted to have any control over the curriculum I teach. I can’t be trusted to fairly and impartially evaluate my students, let alone my colleagues. I can’t be trusted to have collective bargaining rights. I can’t be trusted to have an objective view of governmental policy when it comes to my own profession.

    But they’ll trust me to keep a gun in a room filled with children.

    Even the cynicism-producing neurons of my prefrontal cortex can’t wrap themselves around this kind of stupid bullshit. 

    http://www.lawyersgunsmoneyblog.com/2012/12/time-to-arm-the-union-thugs

  • EllieMurasaki

    Right, sorry.

  • Tapetum

    For whatever value personal anecdotes have – I know two people who own guns. They are also, by some amazing coincidence the only two people I know who have been shot. One was shot by a trespasser on his family lands, when he assumed they didn’t have the guts to shoot him in the back, once he had confronted them, his own gun in hand, and then turned and walked away. The other was shot in the chest with his own double-barreled shotgun, after the home invader got it away from him. He only survived because he kept it loaded with rock-salt instead of shot.

    Speaking as someone who doesn’t much care for guns – I’m not anti-gun, I’m anti idiot-with-gun, anti-criminal-with-gun, anti-kid-with-guns, anti-gun-violence. Personally, I think that guns ought to have licensing requirements just like cars. Want a gun? Go learn to shoot one from a reputable club, or a responsible owner. Go prove to the government you are capable of keeping a gun safely, caring for it safely, shooting it accurately. Then you can have guns – but you’d better be willing to keep up those skills and prove them every now and then.

    I have to prove I can see well enough to drive a car, don’t suffer from any medical conditions that would prevent me from driving one safely (like uncontrolled seizure disorders), and actually know how to drive one in order to get a license. Also, if I prove I have lost that competence (too many at-fault accidents, driving drunk, driving recklessly), I can lose my license, and the loss of my mobility is just too bad.

    As far as I’m concerned that ought to be a minimum sort of requirement for gun ownership. Owning a gun without a proper operating permit (possible exceptions for one that’s kept locked up at somewhere else, like a gun club) should be illegal.

  • Don Gisselbeck

    Using a gun in any real life situation is something requiring a lot of skill. You do not get this skill by firing 25 shots at silhouette of BHO on alternate Thursays. As a skier and a trombone player, I think I have some expertise about expertise. One hour per day serious practice on both of those is not enough to get really good. I hope there is no one so stupid that they think real life gun use is easier than skiing through trees.

  • http://apocalypsereview.wordpress.com/ Invisible Neutrino

     Of course, we know one teacher did own guns. Those guns were the ones used in the massacre.

    Fact check:

    http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424127887324481204578181542025261964.html?mod=WSJ_hp_mostpop_read

    Note that she is not described as a teacher.

  • fredgiblet

    The problem that I have with the dialogue that anti-gun people want to start is that it usually has no basis in reality.  Take the Assault Weapons Ban from 1994 for example, if you look through the list of what was banned by that it was almost completely irrelevant to criminal activity.  I don’t have a problem with sane gun laws, I have a problem with people who have no understanding of the way guns work deciding what sane gun laws are.

    I see people talking about how we need to prevent people from getting machine guns, nevermind the fact that machine guns were never popular and are presently cripplingly expensive and almost entirely unavailable anyway, they’re still convinced that you can go down to the gun store and buy an Uzi.

    I see people like the link above talking about closing the “loophole”, when there IS NO LOOPHOLE, there is NOTHING that you can do a gun show that you can’t do anywhere else.  If you tell people they can’t sell the guns at the gun show they’ll step outside where they can sell them.

    I see people talking about aggressively attacking a SYMPTOM, while ignoring the actual cause.  Just like they talk about how violent video games should be banned because the kids who do things like this are sometimes gamers.

    I see a knee-jerk reaction that we have to do SOMETHING and rather than think about what’s happening and deal with the hard issues that CAUSE tragedies they decide to attack the tools of the tragedy.  That knee-jerk reaction is how we got the PATRIOT ACT.

    I am perfectly willing to talk to people who want to determine how to make laws that will actually HELP, laws that aren’t simply targeting guns, but actually deal with the root cause of the issues.  I’m perfectly willing to give up some of my access to guns, if it will actually produce a positive result and is part of a balanced approach to resolving the issues that we as a country are facing.

  • Lori

    So what exactly do you see as the root cause issues? You apparently aren’t willing to address guns capable of firing an enormous number of rounds in a very short time, because that’s what people have been wanting to talk about for quite a few massacres now and you’re dismissing that discussion. So, what are you willing to do? What do you think will actually HELP?

  • Shallot

     Could you talk about what you’d suggest, then?  I realize I’m jumping into the conversation here, but I don’t know what would be most effective.  (And while my Facebook is apparently full of idiots, tomorrow I go back to work, and I’d like to be prepared for a real conversation.)

  • hidden_urchin

    This. 

    I have a friend whose mother just died.  When said friend was going through her mother’s possessions she found four loaded handguns hidden around the house.  One was under a blanket on a chair.  Her mother didn’t know a damn thing about guns but was so afraid of criminals breaking into her home or the like that she kept them anyway. 

    Here’s the best part.  There’s still one unaccounted for.  Her mother claimed to keep a gun in her car but my friend can’t find it.  It isn’t anywhere else that my friend knows of. 

    In short, somewhere there is very likely an unsecure, loaded gun because we allow people who have no training on gun safety to own them.

    Perfect.

  • Mrs Grimble

    One thing you might want to think about is how those guns get onto the
    black market. This will likely change as 3D printing technology evolves
    (FSM help us all)

    Currently, that seems to be highly unlikely.  This very question was discussed a few months ago on a science-oriented mailinglist that I’m on; gunsmiths and materials experts hashed it back and forth between them and concluded that the plastic materials suitable for ‘maker’ machines were totally unsuitable for building working guns.  You might possibly be able to make a single-shot weapon; but you’d be much more likely to produce something that would turn into a hand-held IED when you pulled the trigger.

  • http://heathencritique.wordpress.com/ Ruby_Tea

    I hope there is no one so stupid that they think real life gun use is easier than skiing through trees.

    I’m sure there are people who think exactly that, but I suspect it’s more the Law of I’m Better: I’d bet that more than half of all gun owners think they are better-than-average shots.

  • http://blog.trenchcoatsoft.com Ross

     What is more likely is that you’d be able to use a combination of 3d printing and off-the-shelf non-regulated parts to build a working gun.  It would be hard, for example, to justify restricting the sale of rifled steel tubes.

  • http://www.facebook.com/swbaxter13 Scott Baxter

    I am perfectly willing to talk to people who want to determine how to make laws that will actually HELP, laws that aren’t simply targeting guns, but actually deal with the root cause of the issues.

    Well, it seems to me this is a relatively straightforward problem: look at other rich democracies, see what their overall gun crime rates and spree murder rates are like, and if they’re lower than the US then look there for solutions. 

    I’m pretty sure you’re going to find that simply targeting guns is going to have to be part of the solution. The US is a massive outlier on gun ownership, with about 90 guns for ever 100 people. As a comparison, Switzerland – which has mandatory gun ownership for part of the population because in lieu of a standing army they rely on a well regulated militia – only has about 45 guns for 100 people, and even that is quite high for the rich democracies. You don’t start to see a cluster until the 30-31 range, where you find countries like Germany, France, Canada, Norway, Sweden, etc. It’s rather unlikely that the US’ outlier status on gun ownership is completely unrelated to the US’ outlier status on gun deaths and spree killings.

  • Ursula L

    Controlling guns can mitigate the actions of the people who do this.  It’s why China has 20 kids in the hospital with knife wounds today, while we have 20 kids in the morgue with bullet wounds.

    But, for the US, this is a long term solution.  We won’t stop mass murder next year with gun regulation, because there are already so many guns in our communities that someone wanting a gun can easily find one.  But we can probably have fewer mass murders with guns twenty or forty years from now, as we gradually reduce the number of guns in our communities and make them harder to get illegally. 

    But the long term nature of the problem is no reason not to address it.  

  • OriginalExtraCrispy

    “Take the Assault Weapons Ban from 1994 for example, if you look through
    the list of what was banned by that it was almost completely irrelevant
    to criminal activity.”

    Like bayonet mounts. Was there really a sweeping wave of bayonet-related crimes going on until then?

    I actually think a lot of the things on the AWB were merely an attempt to mollify its supporters without completely pissing off the NRA. So they threw on things like bayonets, knowing it made the whole list longer, but also knowing it would affect the bare minimum number of people.

  • The_L1985

    I don’t advocate any laws that take away guns from people who legally own them. That would be blatantly unconstitutional. I only advocate laws that make it harder for me tally unbalanced people, and people with a criminal record, to buy guns, and laws against buying or modifying assuault rifles by civilians. (And as a gun owner, you know as well as I do that modifying a semi-auto to full automatic, as current law forbids, is both difficult and expensive, and requires gunsmithing equipment that most law-abiding citizens don’t have.) Please explain to me how this is “gun-grabbing.”

  • The_L1985

    …What?

    I am of the opinion that Du sprecht kein Deutsche, and you don’t speak English either.

  • The_L1985

    Aww, and I wanted an idiotic neoNazi punching bag. They make such a satisfying whooshing sound when they realize nobody takes Nazis seriously anymore.

  • The_L1985

    I know 4 people who own guns.

    2 of them are hunters. They shoot deer. Venison is tasty and abundant, so I certainly can’t argue with this use of guns at all.

    The third is an online friend. He is a self-described “left-wing gun nut.” He loves target shooting and drooling over various types of knives and firearms. He is also strongly pro-gun-control, because he knows that a lot of people out there are idiots, and that an idiot probably shouldn’t have, say, a military issue AR-15.

    The fourth is my father. He keeps a .22 revolver “in case of intruders,” and frankly I think the only reason the man has survived to old age is from sheer stubbornness and being Too Fucking Scary To Attack.

  • The_L1985

    Aww, how cute. The nithing thinks he can impress me with gutter Spanish.

  • Tapetum

    嫌な馬鹿

  • Tapetum

    Pardon, that was intended for the obvious recipient, the odious Winston Blake.

  • AnonymousSam

    I think a simple “滚开。” would suffice.

  • Tapetum

     Probably, and I shouldn’t have neglected telling him to go away, since it’s actually the most important bit. I’m easily provoked today, unfortunately.

  • http://apocalypsereview.wordpress.com/ Invisible Neutrino

    Speaking of some stuff the pro-gun folks like to come up with, here’s one: Some gun owners advise purposely shooting your wall after you shoot a home invader or trespasser so you can claim you fired a warning shot first.

  • fredgiblet

    1. Strict rules regarding how the media is allowed to report stories of spree killings.  I would be shocked to find that the massive sensationalism isn’t part of the problem.  I expect (though obviously it’s hard to tell since most of them off themselves) that a large number of these spree shooters get the idea and the final push by watching the news reports of other spree killers.  The new media turns them into celebrities, evil ones to be sure, but still celebrities.

    Total blackout regarding information about the killer, no name, no face, no family, no personal details that aren’t vastly out of sync with expectations (i.e. young, white male with young, white male interests).  The crime itself should be reported in a bland manner and the amount of time allotted to it should be proportional to the amount of actual information on hand to provide, so no breathless, half-hour long segments where they update the death count by one.  That can be done in 30 seconds.

    2. Start a national dialog about mental health, perhaps model it off the “It Gets Better” campaign and have prominent celebrities, politicians and public figures openly discussing times they had mental issues and how they got through it.  Make attempts to de-stigmatize mental illness and push for easy access to anonymous mental help.

    3. Sane drug laws.  Recognize that the war on drugs is lost and deal with it.  My suggestion would be government-run dispensaries with a “shall issue” mandate where if you’re of age, pass a test and don’t fail certain criteria (like convictions for dealing) you can buy drugs.  It funds itself, guts the drug-dealing culture that causes a great deal of violence and saves a TON of money.

    Regarding actual gun laws I would say restricting face-to-face transfers, requiring an FFL to transfer guns even in-state and requiring that guns be secured when not in use.  When you look at the spree killings they are almost always using guns they either legally own or that they took from friends or family, requiring that the guns be locked up wouldn’t eliminate that but would strongly curtail it.

  • http://blog.trenchcoatsoft.com Ross

    I wonder what percentage of the “We’ll be safer if MORE people have guns!” folks would change their tune if someone pointed out that this would include people who were not white.

  • fredgiblet

    “military issue AR-15″

    And THAT is one of the major problems with the discussion.  The AR-15 is not military issue, that is the M-16, and in fact the AR-15 is functionally highly-similar to large number of other weapons.  So people such as yourself want to target the platform, but in doing so you aren’t actually accomplishing anything besides annoying legitimate gun owners.  So say you ban AR-15s, so I buy a Kel-Tec SU-16 instead, not only does it fire the same round out of the same style of barrel it accepts the same magazines AND folds for easy carry (or concealment).  What have you accomplished?  Nothing.

    So now legitimate gun owners have to purchase new equipment that will be functionally identical to the AR-15 platform, but has a different name and is therefore outside the ban.  This is the EXACT same thing that made the AWB stupid, useless and a laughingstock among gun owners.

    But at least you get to feel like you did something…right?

  • Tapetum

     Indeed. Someone on Making Light pointed out astutely that an Arab-Americans for an Armed America society would be hounded out of existence by whatever means available, legal or not, even if their position was word for word that of the NRA.  I suspect that would be true even if their position were substantially less hard-line than the NRA, they would be viewed as a threat and the same people howling about taking guns away now would be baying for their blood.

  • fredgiblet

    The general perception among gun owners that I’ve seen is that the AWB was made by people with no idea how guns work targeting guns they felt were especially scary.

    The fact of the matter is that if your’e trying to address gun violence by targeting long guns you’re DOING IT WRONG.  However crimes committed with long guns are VERY sexy, so they get all the play in the news and thus a disproportionate amount of media coverage and legal attention.

  • http://deird1.dreamwidth.org Deird

    So say you ban AR-15s, so I buy a Kel-Tec SU-16 instead

    Why don’t I ban both of them, then?

    In fact, I’d ban all semi-automatics and handguns, except for those who are on some kind of active duty.

  • Lori

    You know, it’s not helpful for people who claim to have expertise on guns to refuse to take any meaningful part in a discussion about what to do about gun violence in the US and then do the point-and-laugh about how stoopid the people who write gun laws are. In fact, it’s pretty much a dick move.

    The AWB was dumb, but it was dumb in large part because the people with the most knowledge flat refuse to participate in the process beyond saying that the solution to gun violence is to arm everyone.


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