Thursday, January 03, 2013 • 2:30 PM Comments (10)

Can the gun control conversation grow up?

posted by James Heflin

This is the best article I've yet read about the conflicting cultures of gun owners versus gun control advocates. Makes me realize that, though it's talked up as uncrossable, I straddle this cultural divide. I bet there are plenty of others who do as well.

Plenty of members of my family are devoted to deer hunting. I've been hunting, and I thought it was pretty boring until a yay-hoo with more exuberance than sense gave me a welt across the back of my leg via rabbit shot. I grew up with the knowledge that my father had a rifle in the closet. On the other hand, he told me he didn't think it would fire and he didn't own ammo for it anyway. I've shot some fairly mad guns, courtesy of a friend's FBI father. I don't find them inherently frightening. But I still think they create a false sense of self-assuredness: plenty of folks talk about what they'd do in a crisis--i.e., who they'd shoot--but I've talked to enough veterans of Iraq and Afghanistan to know that's foolish conjecture.

Maybe, just maybe, NRA folks can have a discussion about whether guns are actually very effective for self-defense. Seems they are best at turning, in moments of passion or drunkenness, "good guys" into "bad guys." Recent research about "stand your ground" laws backs that idea up well. And they're also equal opportunity weapons, killing gun owners who turn them on themselves or, in moments of mistaken identity, members of the family.

But having that kind of discussion would require getting past the usual canard about how changing gun laws automatically equals an attempt to take all guns away. It's a classic bait and switch, but never seems to grow tiresome to its fans. Ought to be interesting to see what unfolds regarding such discussions in the wake of the Sandy Hook Elementary incident. It truly seems to have been a game-changer for a lot of people. Will it be enough to change the tenor of the conversation to something useful to both sides?

Comments (10)
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Is there a specific gun law that would have prevented Newtown? That's the only real question. The laws currently being pushed by Dems would not have stopped it (being able to shoot less rounds per minute wouldn't stop someone in that situation).

Guns exist. All the current hysteria by Democrats will do is restrict law abiding citizens from exercising their constitutional rights. So law abiding citizens who wish to excercise those rights have every right to be alarmed.

If you want to talk about facts, virtually all mass shootings end at the first sign of resistance (police, someone else with a gun). All you brainwashed liberals SHOULD wonder why the politicians who are advocating the restriction of all guns send their kids to schools with armed security.

And there's also this: The worst US school massacre in history was done with bombs, not guns.

PS. The 2nd amendment wasn't and isn't for hunting.

Posted by k on 1.5.13 at 17:24

Kev - Glad you agree that our kids should also go to schools with highly trained specialists protecting them with fire arms. You unwittingly have agreed with my point. Thanks! If more guns WERE NOT the answer, I'm sure Barack would ask that they be removed from his kids' school.

Posted by k on 1.6.13 at 9:54

Remember when it was wrong to discuss the value of enhanced interrogations when the memory of 9/11 was still raw in the American psyche? But now, quick, let's do "something". What that something is matters less than taking the heroic position of "protecting the children."

In other news, an intruder broke into a house and the terrified mother gathered up her twins and hid in a closet as the man ransacked the home. Then he got to the closet and the mother emptied her 0.38 into him.

I wonder if this will be a game-changer for some people.

Posted by C. Heston on 1.6.13 at 11:36

Kev - It really comes down to this question. Why does Barack Obama's family (along with David Gregory's and other DC elites) deserve to send their kids to a guarded school but you do not? You are arguing with an army of straw men instead of answering my points. It's OK if it takes thousands of armed guards and they wouldn't have to be trained to the level of secret service.

Again... the one unrefutable point to all of this is that mass shooters stop and/or kill themselves at the first sign of resistance. So that would mean the answer is more resistance, not less. Sorry to use logic in what you and your ilk have made a purely emotional issue.

Still haven't heard anyone list a law that would have prevented Newtown.

Posted by k on 1.6.13 at 16:15

David Gregory's kid goes to the same school as Obama's and they enjoy the same protection.You're wrong. And if their kids are targets but ours are not, how do you explain Newtown?

Set and match.

"I don't personally want to live in a world where more and more people are hanging around with their guns at ready" (Pure emotion, no logic or reason - as defines the left's argument on this issue.)

Posted by k on 1.9.13 at 6:45

Kev - What don't you understand about the danger of your argument's logic? If more guns equal more danger....l and less guns equal less danger.... then banning all guns makes us the safest. It's not true... but that's where your emotional reaction leads us.And we all know banning guns does nothing as evidenced by DC and other areas who "ban" them.

Guns exist.

Posted by k on 1.10.13 at 6:40

The US has higher crime rates than UK in many things so it's unfair to only look at gun violence... it's also difficult to compare since the reporting is different.

One thing to note however is that they have a high number of home invasions which you could attribute to the fact that burglers know homeowners are unlikely to defend themselves with lethal force.

But you prove your bias.... it "must" be their gun laws. Well there you have it. :)

In all seriousness though ... it sucks that you and I can't even have a meaningful discussion on this because you refuse to acknowledge (or more sadly, legitimately don't understand) the point that guns exist. I guess I'll break it down for you in good faith: Guns exist therefore we can't pass any laws to cause them to not exist, therefore bad guys who want to do bad things will get them (or carry out their destruction in other ways like bombs, etc) regardless of any new law we pass. Since no law will prevent bad guys from getting guns (bad people who intend to murder which is against the law will also disregard the law saying they can't use a gun for said murder) all the ever increasing gun laws do is prevent good citizens from getting guns to protect themselves.

The fact is mass shooters are unly unsuccessful (or less successful) and/or stopped when they encounter resistance, which means MORE resistance is the answer - not less. That's what Obama and other DC elites have the priveledge of sending their kids to a school with armed security. So far I'm not aware that they have asked them to leave in order to make the school safer. So it's good enough for them but not for the little people I guess? Such hypocrisy.

You, TG, and your ilk keep saying you don't want to ban all guns. That may be true of you, however many on your side openly admit they would like to ban guns altogether... they've already tried it in cities with horrible results. So stop saying no one wants to take away all of our guns - they absolutely do. Therefore every small step is toward that goal, hence the resistance every step of the way. They openly state in so many words that the 2nd amendment is outdated and at best we should just allow hunting rifles. The majority of the left in this country wants to ban all guns. That's a fact. So we can keep talking about it but don't say no one wants to take all the guns away because they do.

Sadly it wouldn't work even if they did (see 'guns exist'). Violence would continue in other forms and as a side effect we would lose our second amendment right and take the step that every nation must take before it can become a dictatorship: disarming citizens. Read history and learn from it.

Posted by k on 1.10.13 at 12:29

Eric Holder: Gun Owners Should 'Cower' in Shame Like Smokers

"If I could have banned them all - 'Mr. and Mrs. America turn in your guns' - I would have!"
- Diane Feinstein

"When we got organized as a country, [and] wrote a fairly radical Constitution, with a radical Bill of Rights, giving radical amounts of freedom to Americans, it was assumed that Americans who had that freedom would use it responsibly .... When personal freedom is being abused, you have to move to limit it."
- Bill Clinton

"Outside of the killings, Washington has one of the lowest crime rates in the country."
- Mayor Marion Barry, Washington, DC

"If it was up to me, no one but law enforcement officers would own hand guns..." Chicago Mayor Richard Daley, Federal Gun Legislation Press Conference in Washington, D.C., November 13, 1998.

"The measures adopted to restore public order are: First of all, the elimination of the so-called subversive elements .... They were elements of disorder and subversion. On the morrow of each conflict I gave the categorical order to confiscate the largest possible number of weapons of every sort and kind. This confiscation, which continues with the utmost energy, has given satisfactory results."
- Benito Mussolini

"The most foolish mistake we could possibly make would be to allow the subject races to possess arms. History shows that all conquerors who have allowed their subject races to carry arms have prepared their own downfall by so doing. Indeed, I would go so far as to say that the supply of arms to the underdogs is a sine qua non for the overthrow of any sovereignty."
- Adolf Hitler

"All political power comes from the barrel of a gun. The communist party must command all the guns, that way, no guns can ever be used to command the party."
- Mao Tse Tung

As for the original intent of the 2nd amendment.

The strongest reason for the people to retain the right to keep and bear arms is, as a last resort, to protect themselves against tyranny in government. -- Thomas Jefferson

”A free people ought to be armed.”
~George Washington

Posted by k on 1.10.13 at 12:59

Is your right to free speech worth those whose hate speech incites violence and unrest?

Posted by k on 1.11.13 at 6:33

It's really about the real purpose of the 2nd amendment.

Posted by k on 1.12.13 at 15:41



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