A gun in the first act always goes off in the third

“It’s everywhere and always been recognized: an armed society is a primitive society.”

“An Oklahoma woman arrested Monday on drug charges had a loaded handgun hidden in her vagina, according to police.”

“Not only did police canine Ivan discover a stolen handgun, he fired it too.”

“Police arrested a 61-year-old Florida woman for allegedly pointing a gun at Walmart employees, threatening them after the store refused to honor her coupon for $1 off of a purchase and later attacking authorities.”

“The Tyler Morning Telegraph has learned that a Van Independent School District employee accidentally was shot during a district-sponsored concealed handgun license class on Wednesday.”

“The school district was sponsoring the class as part of its program to arm teachers and other school employees, in response to the Sandy Hook Elementary massacre and the NRA’s call for America to arm its schools.”

“A school district in New York has put a program to put armed officers in schools on hold after a policeman’s handgun went off at Highland High School.”

“The National Rifle Association’s field representative for New York was barred from having guns after an altercation with his wife.”

“A 3-year-old boy from Manchester, Tennessee was left in critical condition over the weekend after being shot while handling a small gun that an adult left sitting on a nearby counter-top.”

“Family and friends in Michigan are mourning the death of a 4-year-old Jackson County deputy’•s son, who accidentally shot and killed himself over the weekend.”

I’m very much on the conservative side of politics, but I just saw this as one of those things that demanded the use of the authority of my office to try and change.”

I know my father is watching us on this journey … to make our community, our state, and our country a safer place.”

You folks in Chicago want me to get castrated because your families are having too many kids. It spells out exactly what is happening here. You want us to get rid of guns.”


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  • It’s actually quite restrictive–and mine is one of those “red, flyover country” states that y’all like to sneer at.

    Are you aunursa’s mini-me? He likes to put the “mocking flyover states” thing in other people’s mouths too.

  •  It’s really more of a “Kiss Kiss Bang Bang”-up job.

    Also, I’d think any good set of gun-safety rules would include:

    A) Shooting someone is not a good way to win an argument
    B) “Mah wife was a cheatin’ whore!” is not “self defence”
    C) Wearing a hoodie while being black does not constitute “clear and immediate danger”

  • And why is “Red Dawn” so maligned by people around here? It was a pretty
    good story about, basically, WWII partisans, retold in a more
    local-to-Americans context.

    Surprise! I kind of like it!

    But it’s taken on such a life of its own in a way that the filmmaker probably didn’t expect. Part of the problem is that it has shout-outs to right-wing paranoia about records of gun ownership, and another part is that the teenagers, inasmuch as they face a rather hopeless task, christen themselves the Wolverines and  in doing so, invite the viewer to imagine themselves the David-hero in this battle-against-the-Soviet-Goliath.

    This kind of thinking, while harmless when watching a 2-hour movie, becomes rather less amusing when people who watch these sorts of movies believe they are allegorical tales about fighting against a “socialist” USA’s federal government.

  • ohiolibrarian

     Did you read about the restrictions and regulations associated with gun ownership?

    From Wikipedia:

    –Each such individual is required to keep his army-issued personal weapon (the 5.56x45mm Sig 550 rifle for enlisted personnel and/or the 9mm SIG-Sauer P220
    semi-automatic pistol for officers, military police, medical and postal
    personnel) at home or (as of 2010) in the local armoury (Zeughaus).

    –Up until October 2007, a specified personal retention quantity of
    government-issued personal ammunition (50 rounds 5.56 mm / 48 rounds
    9mm) was issued as well, which was sealed and inspected regularly to
    ensure that no unauthorized use had taken place.[4] The ammunition was intended for use while traveling to the army barracks in case of invasion.

    In October 2007, the Swiss Federal Council
    decided that the distribution of ammunition to soldiers shall stop and
    that all previously issued ammo shall be returned. By March 2011, more
    than 99% of the ammo has been received.
    Only special rapid deployment
    units and the military police still have ammunition stored at home

    –When their period of service has ended, militiamen have the choice of
    keeping their personal weapon and other selected items of their
    equipment. Keeping the weapon after end of service requires a license.

    –The sale of ammunition – including Gw Pat.90 rounds for army-issue assault rifles –
    is subsidized by the Swiss government and made available at the many
    shooting ranges patronized by both private citizens and members of the
    militia. There is a regulatory requirement that ammunition sold at
    ranges must be used there.

    There are a whole lot of regulations for buying and transferring firearms as well–far more than in the US. Consequently ….

    –In 2005 over 10% of households contained handguns, compared to 18% of
    U.S. households that contained handguns. In 2005 almost 29% of
    households in Switzerland contained firearms of some kind, compared to
    almost 43% in the USA.

    I’d be good with their system. But the NRA would have a hissy fit.

  •  I suspect if you fiddled with it a little along the lines of “Every US citizen must buy a gun, and every N years, they have to turn in that gun and buy a new one” and kept all the laws that stop people from ever actually using their gun for anything other than defending their country in the event of an invasion, the NRA would somehow find a way to declare that perfectly consistent with freedom and liberty and the founder’s intentions.

  • The_L1985

     Understandable.  I heard the name of the game once, looked it up out of morbid curiosity, and…if I weren’t insanely hard to offend, I would have had nightmares.

    As it is, I merely regret finding out that there are people crazy enough to think that The Game Which Shall Not Be Named was actually a good enough idea to publish on the Internet.

  • The_L1985

     I think the fact that orifice size can be determined in that game, much less the fact that the system for determining orifice size is broken enough that you can have a negative diameter, is reason enough.

    Also, the fact that someone found that necessary to include is just plain hilarious.

  • Madhabmatics

    If you just want to hang it on your wall, why is all the fighting going to make sure pastors can’t say “Guns aren’t allowed in this sanctuary?”

  • The_L1985

    I don’t know.  Considering the common movie device of hero  = winner, I’d say that the fact that the Wolverines lose negates the whole “teenage heroes” aspect.

  • Jim Roberts

     If I wasn’t clear in my first post, Ross makes the point I would try to make – the NRA is driven by profit and by gathering power to themselves. This does not make them incapable of accomplishing good, but any good they do is incidental to the ultimate cause of the organization.

  • ohiolibrarian

    So which is it? Do you want guns to protect the country from nonexistent threats or on the off-chance that you will need to protect yourself from a  criminal attack?

    Really, do you LIKE living in fear? It doesn’t seem like much of a life.

  • hidden_urchin

    Not sure it’s quite what you meant, but some cynic I read wrote that the fastest way to get decent gun-control in this country would be to give every black male a firearm.

    I suspect it would have the same effect.  The radical supporters of the Second Amendment*, I think, don’t actually want firearms access to be an inalienable right because if that were so then they would advocate making it possible for every single citizen to have a firearm despite social or financial status.  Since they are not doing this it suggests that they want it to be a protected privilege for the right people only.  So, if you’re a white male then you should be able to carry whatever you want, whenever you want to, and wherever you happen to be and be able to use it as you choose without repercussions.  Everyone else just has to live with it.

    *Note: I am not talking about the vast majority of US gun owners who are actually quite sensible and responsible. 

  • ohiolibrarian

     No that was the NY NRA official. Apparently he gets his guns back in October.

    I’m sure his wife will be THRILLED. Hope she doesn’t get shot in November.

  • ohiolibrarian

     Re: Nukes for home use. I understand that Scalia interpreted “bearing arms” to mean that they had to be the kind of weapons you could carry. In your arms. So, no cannons for you.

    But come to think of it … a nuke could fit into a suitcase. 

  • Well, the ending is rather hastily patched on at the end, but even so the movie’s mythology has rather obscured the very salient point that it makes about the extremely high casualty rates partisan forces can expect to incur.

    Look at the Ukrainian post-WW2 insurgency against the USSR, for example.

  • LoneWolf343

     I believe that is covered under “Guns are a LAST resort.” People tend to forget this when they have a gun, tending to go for the option that shows that they have the power instead of going for the option which defuses the conflict.

    I believe the gun-worship this country loves to do is rooted in pride…which is a nice way to describe penile surrogacy.

  • ohiolibrarian

    A personal note: My husband was the kind of guy who criticized Vietnam movies because a story set during the Tet offensive included a gun that wasn’t issued until two years later. He was into guns and had several pistols, shotguns and rifles and read Guns and Ammo like some guys read porn. He was also well-trained and very careful.

    BUT, one time he almost shot me. Kind of a vivid memory of the pistol tracking across my body just before IT WENT OFF shocking the both of us. Because I’d startled him.

    An equally vivid memory of placing my hand beneath the hammer of a revolver when he was threatening suicide during a fit of depression. I believed that he wouldn’t deliberately cause me pain by firing, and he didn’t.

    My husband was basically a good guy. Just be warned that responsible gun owners screw up every day and twenty years of responsible gun ownership can still end in a fatal accident due to human error. Or a suicide.

  • LoneWolf343

     Just because they knew technology improves doesn’t mean they knew how it would improve…if they knew that, they would have actually had the technology already.

  • EllieMurasaki

    Tell that to all the sci-fi writers whose technological predictions came true.

  • LoneWolf343

     They fire a lot quicker, and tend to have larger magazines than bolt-actions, et al.

  • LoneWolf343

     They also made a bunch of predictions that haven’t come true, and look rather silly in retrospect. They also missed some really big technological improvements.

    So, that means jack.

  • P J Evans

     There was one occasion when I was in on a discussion of nuclear bullets for snipers. They’d be made from something like Am-241, for which the critical mass is about that of a rifle bullet. Of course it would require a warehouse full of smoke detectors, and the shooter wouldn’t survive the experience (we figured to get someone who was already terminal) but if you’re having to nuke a command post, you’re already in big trouble.

  • P J Evans

     They still have a better record than the annual ‘psychic predictions’.

  • aunursa

    Are you aunursa’s mini-me? He  likes to put the “mocking flyover states” thing in other people’s mouths

    Note to self:

    Out: mocking dim residents of flyover states
    In: mocking trigger-happy rednecks

    Got it.

  • SergeantHeretic

    I guess my whole thing is this.

    A gun is a device specifically designed to kill something. Most popularly acknowledged guns are designed to kill PEOPLE. I can’t figure out any circumstance under which owning a gun would not kill ME fastest of all.

    I cannot imagine any circumstance under which I would want or need to kill a person.

    I don’t own anything I want to keep bad enough that it requires the death of another human being.

    Any circumstance requiring me to defend myself would require the assailent to come close enough to me for the fighting skills I know to render him harmless.

    In order to do “Something” to me he would have to at some point put the gun down, then his ass is mine.

    If all he wants is my stuff he can have it I can always get more stuff nothing I own is worth my life, or his.

    If he wants something more he has to at some point PUT DOWN THE GUN in order to get it. Then as before, his ass is mine.

    Anything he can do to hurt me or kill me or a loved one with a gun he can do to me at distance and me having a gun won’t stop him.

    If he doesn’t have a gun, I don’t need one either, my hand to hand skills will suffice. If he does have a gun my havinga gun won’t help me.

    That is why I cannot understand owning a gun.

  • Rhubarbarian82

     I’m glad you put the quotes around “semi-automatic” because you know as well as I do, “semi” automatic weapons rarely stay that way after purchase.  The modification to full auto is easily found and easily done by someone with a little practice.

    Remind me again how to easily modify my semi-auto Hammerli .22 target pistol into a full-auto killing machine. I always forget for some reason.

  • In case it hasn’t surfaced by the end of the thread (I’m only on page 2), the letter falsely attributed to Joe Biden is in fact from Paul Bibeau’s GoblinBooks blog. Bibeau satirically attributes it to Biden, now, in the way the Onion attributes all sorts of things to political figures who haven’t actually said them, so I can see the confusion.

    “You’ll Shoot Your Eye Out, Kid” by Joe Biden

  • SergeantHeretic

    Regadless it’s still hystyerically funny and in  levitas. veritas

  • Anton_Mates

    Remind me again how to easily modify my semi-auto Hammerli .22 target pistol into a full-auto killing machine.

    The Hammerli .22s seem to go full auto by themselves now and then, so I can’t imagine it’s that hard…

  • fredgiblet

    Or it could mean that gun ownership and crime are not directly linked.

    As a side note, am I the only person who wishes I could respond to more than one post in a single post?

  • fredgiblet

    I do, I’m not certain how many other people here do though.  Murder is at a lower TOTAL than in 1969 when we had something like 200 million people.  It’s one of the reasons that I find frenzies like this so facepalm-worthy, the restrictions being proposed have already been demonstrated to have little to no effect, the rates are dropping ANYWAY, yet we’ve still got people frothing over the desperate need to ban a minor contributor.  *sigh*

  • fredgiblet

    Interesting.  I wonder how hard it is to get ammunition from non-sanctioned sources.  That certainly eliminates their use in casual crime (not that they would be likely to be used that way anyway), though a spree shooting would still be perfectly plausible.

  • fredgiblet

    And you probably didn’t hit anything doing that.  Slide-fire stocks would be more effective, but most people aren’t going to use those anyway, full-auto might be fun to play with, but it eats money like crazy.

  • fredgiblet

    It’s called a collection.  Jay Leno has 190 cars and motorcycles, some people have a couple dozen guns.  I could name of a couple dozen guns I’d like to have, most of them have historical value of one kind or another.  Add in variants and I’d probably be looking at 50-60.

  • fredgiblet

    “I’m glad you put the quotes around “semi-automatic” because you know as well as I do, “semi” automatic weapons rarely stay that way after purchase.  The modification to full auto is easily found and easily done by someone with a little practice. ”

    Evidence?  While some earlier guns were easy to convert most modern guns have been modified to make them much more difficult, and since doing so ends you in a Federal prison if anyone gets word that you’ve done it I think you’re vastly overstating the prevalence.  Full-auto is probably fun to play with and I’m sure there are people who have done it illegally but I don’t know anyone personally who’s willing to risk the fallout for a bit of fun.

  • fredgiblet

    I did, the  crucial part is “There is a regulatory requirement that ammunition sold at ranges must be used there”.  I took that to mean they aren’t allowed to buy ammo elsewhere and keep it, but it doesn’t actually SAY that, so I wasn’t positive.

  • fredgiblet

    This question wasn’t directed at me, but I’ll answer it anyway.  I support the right of anyone to decline to allow weapons in their private property, the people pushing that sort of law don’t have my support in their endeavors, in fact I think they do quite a bit of harm to the cause by doing things like that.

  • fredgiblet

    I don’t live in fear.   Well not of fear of the country being invaded or my apartment being robbed anyway.  I live in plenty of fear of other things (Being sent back to the other contract at work, having my car engine shit itself, having one of my hard drives die, etc.) but not of those things.  Why do you think Ido?

  • Simongren

     It is true that Switzerland has a high gun ownership rate.  However, you should read this article about the rules that everyone must follow in relation to gun ownership.

    I doubt seriously that the NRA would lobby for those same rules.

  • fredgiblet

    Wow.  Did that seriously just not attach the comment I was responding to to almost every post?

  • SergeantHeretic

    fredgiblet, I am at a loss as to why someone needs such a large amount of objects specifically designed to kill when I don’t even need one. I’m not saying they can’t have them, I am just totally confused as to what is the urdge that makes them WANT that many speficic killing devices.

    As I mentioned in a post above yours, I don’t own anything that is worth killing a human being over.

    If someone is going to kill me with a gun my having a gun won’t even slow them down.

    If someone wants to use the gun to coerce me or violate me at some point they’ll have to come close to me and put the gun down, then it’s the Joanne show, and my legs are much stronger than his.

    I don’t know, sport. So far the aruguments put forth in defense of gun ownership are either macho Red Dawn fantasies, race baiting, paranoic posturing or just plain silly.

    I had and used guns as a soldier, but they were a tool of the trade, and I’m not in that trade anymore.

  •  I know plenty of good ole boys who could care less about the potential risk, because they are so insulated from those risks by their privilege that they do not consider them. 

  • Jim Roberts

    If we were going after target pistols here, you might have a point. Oh, and they sell a conversion kit for that online. I won’t link to it, though, out of deference to our host.

  • Jim Roberts

    Welcome to Disqus. Sorry about that.

  • Carstonio

    Looking beyond the racial aspects of the language about crime, the notion of guns for personal protection is Manichean, good people trying to stay safe in a lawless, violent world. That same presumption is all over the discussions about rape and pedophilia. Zerlina Maxwell was treated as a blasphemer for suggesting that men be educated on how not to be sexually aggressive. Far too often, rapists and pedophiles are assumed to be faceless, nameless criminals instead of people known and trusted by their victims. Seems like too many folks are eager to prove, or convince themselves, that they wouldn’t be capable of sexual assault. Or capable of shooting a friend or relative in the heat of an argument. 

  • SergeantHeretic

    Carstonio, there is a lot to that.

    There are a LOT of people on the pro gun side who are POSITIVE that they are the big hero, the lone ranger, the heroic dfender of female chastity ect ect.

    It really is a bizarre form of wish fulfillment and reality displacement.

    “Good Christian men” are NOT rapists and child molestors and therefore do not need to be tought how NOT to rape women or molest children.

    Pay no attention to the headlines and news stories that say otherwise and are becoming more and more common every day.

    Therefore a good Christian man with a gun is The Hero (Fanfare) Coming to save the day! (Fanfare) only non Christian non white, non rich non republican non American people are the threat and “We” NEED the guns so we can do what we must do about THEM!

  • fredgiblet

    I assure you that I will never advocate for nor vote for a law forcing you to own a gun.

  • fredgiblet

    Do you know anyone who’s actually illegally modified a gun to full auto condition?

  • Donalbain

     “Are you talking about people who oppose private gun ownership of any sort? That would almost do away with hunting.”

    To which I reply “meh”.

  • Jenny Islander

    Where it costs about four times as much to buy food that would provide the same nutrients as wild meat, the spectre of no guns at all is not exactly “meh.”

    Also, if you have done everything to avoid the local bears while out hunting and a bear decides it has a beef with you anyway, you don’t want to be facing it with a bow.