Firearm Control Legislation Discussion

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Postby Charmosa » Mon Jun 13, 2016 10:42 pm

Feydakin Hijack!

This is now the official thread for discussions about Firearm legislation in the United States and elsewhere.

I will be funneling most (if not all) of the posts in other threads debating gun control legislation into this catch-all thread. If ever there is a news item that makes you want to debate firearm legislation I would like everyone to respect victims and not do it in news threads about the incident.

I will be sticking this for now just so people are aware of it.

Thank you for your understanding!

------------------------------------------------

So I stumbled upon a comment on a news page that I felt summed it up well, posted that on FB, then tiraded into my own rant and rave. Perhaps it's better suited over here. I apologize in advance for length. The comment I liked goes:
"Too much of the mainstream media, and ALL of the RWNJ media, and the "Great Drumpf," are all over the Jihadism/ISIL/International Terrorism angle.

The shooter had a serious domestic violence history, couldn't figure out how to live with or love a woman, and was spouting off homophobic thoughts to his father. Add to that that he had no religious history to speak of, and only brought up the subject of Jihad when he was in a violent mood, and had no ties to any organized jihadis, and it's hard to blame this on his religion, or lack thereof. But maybe we could blame this on his closet-case sense of guilt. 

What this was was homophobic violence by a self-hating homo with a deathwish who harbored some notion that he could do some form of penance, cleansing his homosexual tendencies from his personal history for the afterlife, by killing as many gay folk as possible on the way out of this one. Only someone with no understanding of his own religion could come up with that one.

Besides, no self-respecting Islamic terrorist would "waste" a terror attack on a marginalized subgroup that the majority population wouldn't closely identify with. The goal of terrorism is to instill fear in the whole population. A football stadium, airport, Times Square, Union Station, World Trade Center, sure. A gay nightclub? Seriously?

This wasn't a Jihadist attack. It was a very troubled, well-armed American struggling with heterosexual domestic life and trying to obliterate the very thing in himself he couldn't figure out how to live with.

Somebody needs to go on TV and make this point."


And then I couldn't help it, I let my mind run wild with how easily this could be spun to never address the real problem. Here's my rant:

The biggest issue I see coming from republicans spinning this as Islamic terrorism, and not a gun control issue, is that I can see the shifting of blame and the mistreatment of Muslims, or indeed any middle eastern looking person, spiraling out of control. (Can it get worse? I think so, though I hope I'm wrong.) As out of control as our gun laws and our mass shootings. How many do we have a year?

This mass murdering closet case was born in the US! He is American! His attack had "I'm not gay" written all over it. I'm not gay, look how tough and masculine I am as a beat my wife. I'm not gay, look how much I hate gay men kissing. I'm not attacking gays because I'm gay, I'm suddenly and conveniently a Jihadist! Even though I have no previous religious history or ties to other terrorists. "I'm not gay!" All the way to his grave.

This isn't foreign terrorism, this is domestic homophobia. 100% made in the USA. It's bad enough that Drumpf and his ilk want to ban Muslims from entering the country, but what if they reopen internment camps within our borders? First he deems an American judge with Mexican ancestry unfit to perform his job, so we know that even without the threat of terrorism he already sees nonwhite Americans as somehow lesser. As if white male judges are suited to handle cases for women and minorities, but they are not suited to give fair trail to a white man in return? If the fearmongering against Islam continues unchecked then to protect themselves, easily led people will arm themselves. Gun sales go up. So do mass shootings. Hmm? Wonder what to do? Make guns harder to get? Ban automatic weapons that can cause 100+ casualties in a night? Nope. Lock up anyone suspicious. Anyone who looks like a terrorist. Nevermind if they are Christian , or atheist. Nevermind if they were born and raised here. We gotta contain them for the safety of the American people! Cut them off from all ties to the middle east or any family, lest they be conspiring against us Americans! You know, the white, straight, Christian conservative ones! The only ones that matter to us! The ones who are threatened by how outnumbered they are becoming and how the world is starting to push back against the bigotry. So they lock up black Americans so they can't vote, deport immigrants or lock them up too, and poison the minds of the free-to-vote white people. Mexicans are rapists, Muslims are terrorists, Black youths are superpredators. This is the reason bigoted white people stay in offices of power. Voter suppression is openly a tactic they use (voter ID cards, closing polling stations in areas of color and opening more in whiter areas). Sadly, I don't think Fox Newsians or our Republican Congress care about saving the lives of Americans. It's easy to see that gun violence is getting ridiculous, and that stricter regulations would save how many people a year at this rate?

Can we protect Americans? Or will Drumpf close our borders and Make America White Again? Will Hillary take us to war with the terrorists even though it's really about oil? If you, your people, and your land have been terrorized by the US for decades, leaving no way for a stable society to emerge. You could look to extremists who have answers. (Isn't that what Drumpf supporters are doing?) Because any answer is more comforting than the uncertainty and limbo state they are in. With American drones flying over their heads, and American soldiers killing their men, and American politicians stealing their wealth. You can't blame the terrorists for filling themselves with hatred for the country that has caused nothing but terror to them. Fear leads to hatred bing bam boom dark side.

I know this rant is all over the place. I had to stop and reread when I caught myself star warsing. But I think I'll keep it.

Tl;dr this attack wasn't Islamic terrorism and we gotta crack down on gun laws so we don't have to have a magazine called Mass Shootings Weekly.

End of rant. I'm going to add, though, that his wife and father claimed he wasn't religious but now the father is found linked to the Afghan Taliban where he wants Pakistan to return part of what once was Afghanistan back to them. Death to Pakistan and all that. So perhaps there is a chance their saying he wasn't religious was a cover and he was indeed some religious nut. Doesn't change the fact that he could legally buy the assault rifle that led to over 100 dead or injured before swat could take him out. It doesn't change the white guy caught on the way to gay pride packing heat. Or the Charleston shooter. It's not the religion or the country of origin that's literally killing a STUPID amount of people. It's guns. Keep your regular rifles and your handguns for hunting and home protection. Really, go nuts, gun nuts. You can still accidentally shoot each other on hunting trips Cheney style, or leave your kids at home to accidentally shoot each other or themselves. I don't propose anyone come and take your guns. But if that assault rifle is for hunting, why does it need to fire so many so quickly? Did you want to skip that whole learning to shoot part or do you just got a freezer big enough for 50 deer and you want to stock up? IT'S BULLSHIT. It's not for hunting deer or fending off a burglar. It's for killing people. Lots of people. Very quickly. It's not your goddamn right as an American to be able to do that. Fuck you.

Ok I guess my addendum was a mini rant too. Whoops.

I'm open to any other takes on this.
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Postby ink » Tue Jun 14, 2016 7:10 am

hmm.. its dangerous to entertain the insidious and the foolishness too long, lest we become contaminated. truth is, guns are tools. Objects that are extentions of the operator. 50 human beings dead and 53 more wounded at the hands of one human being. tragic yo. we can speculate why he was so troubled to the ends of the earth, the only thing that remains is that he was troubled. maybe society needs to self reflect.. as individuals, we can all start by exercising a little more compassion, even if in the tiniest of area's. example, wait an extra 3,4 seconds and hold the door for the next one, ya dick! and we all guilty, dont lie.. point is, change the thinking. its the framework that has got everyone mental. its a pattern. wake up and recognize before its too late, u know
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Postby ink » Tue Jun 14, 2016 7:11 am

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Postby Feydakin » Tue Jun 14, 2016 1:36 pm

OK so this might go ranty. I'm not a debater but feel like I need to speak my mind. None of this is directed at anyone in particular.

As to how the terrorist get into the club in the first place with a gun? Irony. He had already had a short altercation with the police outside just prior. The club is A GUN FREE ZONE, so the club security AREN'T ALLOWED TO CARRY. They saw an angry looking man with a rifle coming and probably took cover. He broke about a half dozen laws before he even went into the club, firearm laws mostly, but that didn't give him pause... I'm going to go ahead and postulate that if it hadn't been a gun free zone and the security had been allowed to carry, they might have been able to save all those people. Florida is a fairly open state for firearms, but you aren't allowed to open carry under most circumstances, there are gun free zones, among other things...

Oh also, the rifle that he used was not an AR-15. It was a Sig, but that's just you know, facts and stuff and the media isn't concerned with facts, just political narrative and ratings.

I'm a strong advocate of the Second Amendment, I'm also a rational, logical person who has thought long and hard about all the arguments for taking firearms away from the general populace, and I am just as saddened and horrified as anyone when things like this happen. However, nothing anyone says is going to convince me that taking away the Second Amendment or abridging our rights to keep and bear arms is anything but a terrible idea. We have completely adequate gun laws in place for the most part, that isn't the issue at all. As I've said probably dozens of times, these issues are far more complex and deep to be "fixed" by passing a couple laws. Yes, I concur that if you take away the right to keep and bear arms, gun crime WILL go down, but it's never going to happen... at least not with the blessing of the People. If it does, we should be very scared. For myself, I will never willingly give up my right to keep and bear arms.

I don't trust the government, the police or anyone else to protect me and the people I care about. I don't trust them to keep lists of people that aren't allowed to have firearms. I don't trust them with anything without oversight by the People... something that they keep taking away from us, slowly but surely. Patriot Act, civil property seizures, eminent domain, warrantless wire tapping, the list is long. We have the Second Amendment for a reason, and it's not just so we can hunt food for ourselves. It's so the populace can pick up arms and defend ourselves and our freedom when they are threatened by a tyrannical government. Even our own...

I'm sure a lot of people will look at that as paranoid, conspiracy theory bullshit because so many of us live in this pie in the sky, liberal fantasy world that we WISH the world would be... I'm sorry, I live in the real world, where men are corrupt and evil and don't care about anything beyond their own personal power over all of us. Where whole cultures want nothing more than to kill every last one of us because their beliefs tell them so. Where corporations are people and are given more rights than actual human beings, and can literally get away with murder and poison the planet for profit. Where the Church makes hundreds of millions in tax free dollars and build megachurches and priests drive Hummers while their flock lives in poverty, starves and gets molested by them. Where we treat the mentally ill like dirty little secrets or people that just can't help themselves and we should not hold them accountable for diddling little bobby or shooting up a club. Where the media and political narrative constantly tries to keep us at each others throats, scared and xenophobic. I have my eyes open. I wish the world could be better right now, and it can, eventually... but I'm not so shortsighted and naive to think that it can change by taking away those evil guns, or banning Muslims, building a wall, or any of the other bullshit political hot button talking points... it's all smoke and mirrors. Bullshit. Keep us divided, looking at each other instead of at the politicians, corporations and men in power, and the evil they are doing to every last one of us.

So no, you can't have my gun. I might need it.
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Postby Charmosa » Tue Jun 14, 2016 7:05 pm

I'm a strong advocate of the Second Amendment, I'm also a rational, logical person who has thought long and hard about all the arguments for taking firearms away from the general populace, and I am just as saddened and horrified as anyone when things like this happen. However, nothing anyone says is going to convince me that taking away the Second Amendment or abridging our rights to keep and bear arms is anything but a terrible idea. We have completely adequate gun laws in place for the most part, that isn't the issue at all. As I've said probably dozens of times, these issues are far more complex and deep to be"fixed" by passing a couple laws.

I don't think the government should take away the second amendment, but banning the types of assault rifles and automatic/semi weapons that really only exist for one purpose, to kill a fuckton of people very quickly...? I think that's a good idea, as I said in the last part of my post. Keep regular handguns and rifles, to protect yourself from bears, muggers, and big brother. I don't care. But if your gun only has eight bullets it's gonna be a lot harder to kill 50 people in a nightclub.
Yes, I concur that if you take away the right to keep and bear arms, gun crime WILL go down, but it's never going to happen... at least not with the blessing of the People. If it does, we should be very scared. For myself, I will never willingly give up my right to keep and bear arms.

That's part of the reason why I don't like the conversation going straight to "they're gonna take all our guns! " because just like you, most Americans aren't down with that, and because it's so unpopular most politicians don't adopt that stance since it's campaign suicide. I feel like the all our nothing approach ignores the wide and reasonable middle ground. The middle ground where we can talk about how actual terrorists have urged their own to go to gun shows where they can buy assault rifles like the ones used in mass shootings without any background check. I've thought about both sides of the argument too. I don't see any reason why we can't close loopholes in buying guns. In this case a few laws would help. And if paranoid conspiracy theorists really feel like they need slaughtermatic weapons to maybe one day fight off the government, and that the lives of the many don't measure up to their own personal sense of security... I have to label that person selfish as hell, and at least a little bit delusional. So far the real threat is from unstable people getting guns that fire off too many fucking shots. Again, if Omar Mateen had walked into Pulse with a regular handgun or shotgun, not nearly so many people would be dead and grieving. I think it makes about as much sense as going to a car dealership and demanding to buy a tank because it makes you feel safer on the road. Gun laws should serve to protect the public as a whole.
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Postby Feydakin » Tue Jun 14, 2016 7:16 pm

Quoted for posterity's sake...

Like I said, not going to even get drawn into this debate, as my mind is never going to change on this subject, but I do appreciate the thinly veiled name calling... going right where I said it's end up.


Charmosa wrote:
I'm a strong advocate of the Second Amendment, I'm also a rational, logical person who has thought long and hard about all the arguments for taking firearms away from the general populace, and I am just as saddened and horrified as anyone when things like this happen. However, nothing anyone says is going to convince me that taking away the Second Amendment or abridging our rights to keep and bear arms is anything but a terrible idea. We have completely adequate gun laws in place for the most part, that isn't the issue at all. As I've said probably dozens of times, these issues are far more complex and deep to be"fixed" by passing a couple laws.

I don't think the government should take away the second amendment, but banning the types of assault rifles and automatic/semi weapons that really only exist for one purpose, to kill a fuckton of people very quickly...? I think that's a good idea, as I said in the last part of my post. Keep regular handguns and rifles, to protect yourself from bears, muggers, and big brother. I don't care. But if your gun only has eight bullets it's gonna be a lot harder to kill 50 people in a nightclub.
Yes, I concur that if you take away the right to keep and bear arms, gun crime WILL go down, but it's never going to happen... at least not with the blessing of the People. If it does, we should be very scared. For myself, I will never willingly give up my right to keep and bear arms.

That's part of the reason why I don't like the conversation going straight to "they're gonna take all our guns! " because just like you, most Americans aren't down with that, and because it's so unpopular most politicians don't adopt that stance since it's campaign suicide. I feel like the all our nothing approach ignores the wide and reasonable middle ground. The middle ground where we can talk about how actual terrorists have urged their own to go to gun shows where they can buy assault rifles like the ones used in mass shootings without any background check. I've thought about both sides of the argument too. I don't see any reason why we can't close loopholes in buying guns. In this case a few laws would help. And if paranoid conspiracy theorists really feel like they need slaughtermatic weapons to maybe one day fight off the government, and that the lives of the many don't measure up to their own personal sense of security... I have to label that person selfish as hell, and at least a little bit delusional. So far the real threat is from unstable people getting guns that fire off too many fucking shots. Again, if Omar Mateen had walked into Pulse with a regular handgun or shotgun, not nearly so many people would be dead and grieving. I think it makes about as much sense as going to a car dealership and demanding to buy a tank because it makes you feel safer on the road. Gun laws should serve to protect the public as a whole.
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Postby Psy » Tue Jun 14, 2016 7:37 pm

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Postby Feydakin » Wed Jun 15, 2016 3:04 pm

This is a response to an anti-gun post on Huffington Post that I made and subsequently took down because I literally was getting death threats. Luckily I had posted it via a fake account because I knew better...

So being a liberal rag it's a pretty safe bet that most of you are pro-choice. According to many people in the US and across the world *abortion* is murder, plain and simple, it should be illegal, you should be put in jail and go to Hell for doing it, participating it and in some cases condoning it. Those people believe that it should be illegal in all forms. Americans alone perform close to a million abortions per year on average. Even by the ridiculously broad liberal medias standards that is far more than are killed by "gun violence" every year. However you won't allow Roe v. Wade to be abolished and abortion made illegal again? Why not? Now you might say, apples and oranges. No, not really. It's all about perspective and belief. You may not believe that a baby in the womb before a certain time can be considered a human being, and hence it's not murder, and should be a woman's choice as to whether or not she should get an abortion. Or maybe you just believe that a woman's life takes precedence over an unborn child's. Who knows? The point is that you're not allowing another person or sector of society dictate what you can and cannot do, what should be against the law.

You might think you have all sorts of great logic and reasoning you're ready to throw at me, statistics, studies, etc... well so do the anti-abortionists. They believe that it's murder, period. That you are allowing the murder of one million babies every year. How is that different from or more important than what you believe? Be careful, your bias is showing. The bottom line is, guns are tools, and not the root problem. It doesn't matter what statistics you throw my way, it's still taking away the rights of law abiding citizens that feel their life, freedom, health and well being could be in jeopardy if they lose the Second Amendment or have it abridged in any way. So let's stop arguing about things that aren't really the problem and get to the root of it. Mental health, hatred, poverty, inequality... the things that drive people to feel they need to hurt and kill others. *That* is the real issue here, everything else is a political distraction.

For the record, I am pro-choice AND pro Second Amendment. I am also a supporter of the LGBT community. My daughter, whom I love and support completely is bisexual and currently has a beautiful and kind girlfriend.
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Postby ink » Thu Jun 16, 2016 2:39 am

word.. sometimes those truths can be stingers. but for real, this is better recieved amongst those who would rather utilize critical thinking skills as opposed to recycled propoganda :| its frustrating.. i knew when i found myself arguing on yahoo, years ago, not many were listening and its infuriating. never again tho, ninja or bust
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Postby Charmosa » Fri Jun 17, 2016 10:30 pm

Feydakin wrote:Quoted for posterity's sake...

Like I said, not going to even get drawn into this debate, as my mind is never going to change on this subject, but I do appreciate the thinly veiled name calling... going right where I said it's end up


Oi... did I put my foot in it? I get swept up when I have a strong opinion. I don't know you like that to make any judgment. I actually had no disagreement with what you wrote, I was just using your perfectly valid response to illustrate how I feel like a middle ground gets lost. Because within the reasoning you gave I saw no issue with closing gun buying loopholes or banning the type of gun that makes these mass shootings easier. I was, ahem, rather passionately, trying to see if a strong 2nd amendment supporter like yourself agreed, and if not, then why not? If you don't want to go there then I'm ok leaving it as is, but I'm definitely curious, and my blood is a lot less hot since it's not so fresh off of the biggest mass shooting yet.
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Postby Feydakin » Sat Jun 18, 2016 1:45 am

Charmosa wrote:
Feydakin wrote:Quoted for posterity's sake...

Like I said, not going to even get drawn into this debate, as my mind is never going to change on this subject, but I do appreciate the thinly veiled name calling... going right where I said it's end up


Oi... did I put my foot in it? I get swept up when I have a strong opinion. I don't know you like that to make any judgment. I actually had no disagreement with what you wrote, I was just using your perfectly valid response to illustrate how I feel like a middle ground gets lost. Because within the reasoning you gave I saw no issue with closing gun buying loopholes or banning the type of gun that makes these mass shootings easier. I was, ahem, rather passionately, trying to see if a strong 2nd amendment supporter like yourself agreed, and if not, then why not? If you don't want to go there then I'm ok leaving it as is, but I'm definitely curious, and my blood is a lot less hot since it's not so fresh off of the biggest mass shooting yet.


If you didn't mean it in the way I took it then alright. I think this is one of those issues that it's really difficult for me to articulate properly without getting up in arms so to speak. Usually I can step back and see everything with a cold and analytical mind set so that I can judge a situation without bias. However I've been over this particular road so many times in my life, and forged such strong opinions from what I've concluded (decades of research and debates literally dating back to a project I did about gun control in 6th grade, which would have been '81 or so) that it's hard for me to sit and go through the logic for the umpteenth time. I grew up around guns, hunting, and the outdoors. I had a rifle in my hand when I was a toddler (and the pictures to prove it... well my mom has them ;)) and was taught from a young age to respect the firearm and what it can do. It was just another tool, albeit a dangerous one, that we used.

Do I think that common sense gun legislation is a good thing? Sure, but we already have good laws on the books, and whose common sense? Some scared, easily manipulated person with no actual knowledge, experience or factual information that just believes whatever the politicians tell them? People that knee-jerk react to these things with high emotions and don't stop to think about what they are doing? Lists? Who keeps those lists? I don't trust the government with keeping proper lists OR deciding the criteria for being on those lists. For Christ's sake there are still people that shouldn't be on there, toddlers even, that are on the no fly list because they can't even keep those lists properly. No, I don't trust the government to keep those lists, at least not without oversight and checks and balances. They've proven inept at it at best, and I don't trust their intentions. As I said though, the laws we have are more than adequate, the problem isn't that at all. It's in some cases lack of enforcement for a variety of reasons and loopholes brought about by the fact that we have no reliable way aside from criminal records to tell if someone should be eligible to own a firearm. By default I think any US citizen should under the Constitution, but clearly some people that shouldn't are falling through the cracks. The mentally ill mostly, followed by people with terrorist-like intentions. What I keep coming back to is, yes, these events are horrific, but they are aberrations. By no means is it the frequent occurrence that the media and Liberals paint it as. "Gun violence" is such a broad term, that's used to describe everything from a guy shooting his own face off to criminals and gang bangers who obtained their guns illegally killing each other, to events like in Orlando, to some guy brandishing a shotgun and not shooting anyone... it makes it seem like the Wild West when it's really no such thing. By and large almost all gun owners are responsible, law abiding, sane people.

That having been said though, banning guns is like putting a bandage on a gushing wound we made trying to cut out cancer with a sharp spoon. The real issues we face that have to be addressed go far deeper and are far more complex. Should we ban guns in the meantime? Absolutely not. But we don't have to do one thing at a time either... We just have to recognize that these are complex problems and work to a compromise. That's what Democracy is...
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Postby Feydakin » Sat Jun 18, 2016 2:03 am

Also, something that I'd like to point out regarding the proposed "assault rifle" ban. It's a load of bullshit. Take a look at this picture.

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On top is your typical .223 varmint rifle, functionally identical to the firearm on the bottom, a typical Smith & Wesson AR-15. Now the only difference between these two firearms is frankly aesthetics. The pistol grip is pretty much personal preference, doesn't make the gun do more damage, shoot faster, nothing. The sights looks scary I guess, but again, gun isn't more dangerous. Flash suppressor, again, doesn't make the gun more dangerous. Telescoping stock doesn't make the bullets do more damage or come out faster, or make you not miss... None of the customization that you put in an AR-15 does anything to make the firearm more "deadly". And yet, because of these arbitrary things that don't make the gun any more deadly, some people want then banned. The gun on the top, perfectly fine to own. The gun on the bottom, functionally identical, must be stopped at all costs. How does this make ANY sense at all? How can this be seen as anything but political smoke and mirrors? No sane, rational person can look at this and say that it makes any sense whatsoever.
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Postby ink » Sat Jun 18, 2016 3:16 pm

because it doesnt.. its called misdirection and detracts from the original issue
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Postby ink » Sat Jun 18, 2016 3:17 pm

or rather, the root cause of the issue
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Postby Charmosa » Sat Jun 18, 2016 4:31 pm

Exactly! I think both sides use public ignorance to push their own agendas, and although I grew up around plenty of guns and still have many near and dear to me who would die protecting their 2nd amendment rights, my personal aversion has led to some ignorance on the issue, too. Like I said I don't know you like that to pass judgment, and so far the ONLY thing I disagree with is that the current set of laws are sufficient. I honestly wouldn't care so much if ANYTHING was attempted to curb these mass shootings. They aren't the biggest form of gun violence by a long shot, but they happen often enough I think there needs to be a genuine effort to make it more difficult. The NRA likes to say it's not a gun issue, it's a mental health issue, but then no more mental health is provided to the country. I'd be happy with that as a start, but it hasn't happened yet. Because (my hypothesis) mental health affects too many people and requires continual treatment to be effective, so it'll cost too much for it to get through congress. A gun owner, an AR-15 owner no less, proposed a ban on magazine clips that have more than 10 rounds. I'd be happy with that, since there are guns that aren't assault rifles that are equally damaging. http://thoughtcatalog.com/daniel-hayes/2016/06/i-am-an-ar-15-owner-and-ive-had-enough/
The Charleston shooter obtained his gun legally through a loophole pertaining to wait time for his background check. Nine people are dead because of this specific loophole. That's a fact, not an opinion. Even amending one specific loophole is a start. It may not save a single life in the future, but then again it might save 50 down the line.
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Postby Feydakin » Sat Jun 18, 2016 5:18 pm

Just because a set of problems is difficult to solve doesn't mean we should take the easy way out and not tackle the real issues... doing it the right way the first time is always a better option than band-aid fixes that really do nothing but further political agendas. Mental health and the way we treat mental health in this country especially is indeed a huge part of the root issue and should be properly addressed from the ground up. It's a set of deep rooted societal issues that are frankly going to take more than just laws to overcome. More gun laws are easy for politicians, it doesn't cost them any tax money and they can trick people into supporting it through misdirection and exploiting ignorance. Funding proper mental health support and tackling tougher social issues is expensive and a long process... much longer than any political campaign cycle, so they don't care.

I'm all for closing legal loopholes, they should be closed. I'm not however for making new laws for that because they inevitably try and sneak other provisions into them. Fix and enforce existing laws. Something that I'd like to point out; laws quite often don't work. The San Bernadino terrorists carried out their attacks in a state with some of the strictest gun laws in the country, and that did nothing to deter them. In France, you can't get anything like what they used to carry out the attack last year, but they managed to get machine guns into the country and into the hands of several terrorists. Now I'm not saying gun laws don't have their place, but again, criminals and other bad people don't care about the law, and will find ways around them to do what they want to do. All that bans and strict firearms laws do is keep the every day law abiding citizen from being able to properly protect themselves. Unfortunately a lot of the time firearms and weapons laws are there so that after the fact the criminal can get prosecuted and get heavier penalties. Or so if someone is caught trying to skirt the system they can't. In some of those cases they really aren't preventative measures at all.

Finally, to the high capacity magazine point, anyone that practices tactical magazine switching can make the switch so fast that it renders the arguments against high cap magazines moot. It's an intermediate manual dexterity skill at best and takes nothing but a little practice to get good at it. Again, smoke screen, distraction. Having to take two seconds to switch a magazine doesn't make a terrorist kill less people. The Orlando shooter had three hours to kill those people inside the club before SWAT decided to go in. Most of the time things happen too fast for law enforcement to really get there in time. Events where having a firearm might save lives happen in seconds, at best police take several minutes to arrive on a scene. Which is one important reason why our right to keep and bear arms is so important.
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Postby Feydakin » Sat Jun 18, 2016 6:33 pm

So I'd also like to point out that the NRA (and sadly many other supporters of the Second Amendment) also loves to pass the blame onto things like video games, television and movies for doing things like desensitizing people to real life violence, and inciting already violence prone people, the mentally ill and other easily impressionable into carrying out violence. This is yet another example of misdirection and distraction because it is nothing but a complete and utter load of bullshit. As much as I respect the average NRA member and their work protecting for the Second Amendment, the NRA's leadership has become a political organization and a lobby for the largest weapon manufacturers... you know, the ones that can afford to give kickbacks, grants, and all manner of free stuff. I won't condemn the entire organization for this, because the average, card carrying member doesn't profit from this. However it is clear that the leadership has leaned a little too far politically.
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Postby Feydakin » Sun Jun 19, 2016 2:26 pm

Back at the beginning of the year we saw The White House call on many celebrities to echo Obama's proposed gun control policies. Mike Rowe was not asked, but he gave his opinion anyhow, along with some great facts and statistics about our current system.

https://www.facebook.com/TheRealMikeRowe/photos/a.151342491542569.29994.116999698310182/1115674178442724/?type=3

Hello Friends

I’ve just received a request from The White House! On behalf of The President, I’ve been asked to share some talking points directly with each one of you, regarding the need to expand background checks on those citizens who wish to purchase a gun!

Just kidding.

For some reason, I was not among those celebrities selected to assist The White House in this endeavor. I’ve since recovered from my initial disappointment, and identified three possible explanations for the oversight.

1. The White House did not ask for my assistance, because they do not believe I’m famous enough to persuade anyone of anything.

2. The White House did not ask for my assistance, because they do not believe I would tweet out someone else’s words and claim them as my own.

3. The White House did not ask for my assistance, because they do not believe I support background checks.

With respect to #1, The White House is correct. My powers of persuasion, like my celebrity, are limited.

Regarding #2, The White House is correct again. I would never post someone else’s talking points as if they were my own. My own particular brand of hubris requires me to use my own words, which is probably why everyone in my office has developed a permanent facial tick.

As for #3 though, The White House would be mistaken to assume that I oppose background checks on gun purchases. I do not. I’m just skeptical that expanding a broken system is the best way to keep guns away from bad guys and lunatics.

Currently, thousands of people deemed mentally incompetent by the courts are NOT registered in our National Check System. That’s insane, if you’ll pardon the irony, in part because it’s so easily correctible. Likewise, The ATF says that most states report less than 80% of their felony convictions to the national system. As a result, nearly 7 million convicted felons are not currently registered. Is it any surprise that nearly every mass killer in recent memory passed a background check?

Seems to me, our current system is only as good as the records in it, and right now, those records are laughably incomplete. But even more troubling are the tens of thousands of people who ARE in the system, that keep trying to buy guns illegally with absolutely no consequence.

Lying on your application to purchase a firearm is a federal offense, but very few are prosecuted for doing so. According to Politico, the Feds have prosecuted just 1.5% of all those individuals who have attempted to purchase a gun illegally. If my math is correct, that means 98.5% of people who are NOT allowed to own a gun, have not been prosecuted for trying to buy one.

Maybe it's a manpower problem? Maybe it's a resource problem? But whatever the reason, many thousands of individuals who try to purchase a gun illegally are allowed to keep on trying. Many eventually succeed, and then use that gun in the commission of a crime. This strikes me a serious problem. And yet, I’ve received no tweets from my favorite action heroes, asking me to support an effort to fix the system we have. Why is that?

To be clear, I’m not a member of The NRA. Last time I joined a club it was The Boy Scouts, and that was a long time ago. But from what I can tell, the NRA is not the reason that so many criminals and lunatics are able to buy guns today. Nor do they appear to oppose the kind of overhaul that would give us a more effective check system. In fact, wasn’t it The NRA that demanded background checks back in the mid-nineties, the moment the technology was first made available?

Regardless, we now possess the technology to update and maintain an accurate data base of felons, lunatics, gang members, terrorists, B-list celebrities, and other unsavory types that we can all agree should never be allowed to own a weapon. We also possess the ability to identify and prosecute anyone who attempts to buy a gun illegally. But if we don't have the resources or the commitment to administer and enforce the system we have, why in the world would we want to make it bigger?

#When there’s a hole in your net, you don’t need a bigger net; you need a smaller hole.

#When your foundation is shaky, you don’t keep building on top of it, you knock it down and start over.

Should The White House ever find itself in need of a tweet in support of that approach, please help yourself to either of the above. But if our elected officials are going to rely on actors and comedians to advance their political agendas, let’s not limit them to 140 characters or a list of pre-approved talking points. Seriously, where’s the fun in that? In the name of authenticity, let’s encourage our celebrities to use their own words.

Hey - it seems to be working for Drumpf…

Mike
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Postby Brewtality » Sun Jun 19, 2016 3:19 pm

This is such a valuable discussion to have BUT it's the same discussion which was had the last time this happened. And the time before that. And the time before that. And so on, and so on. It's also the same discussion which will be had the next time this happens and unfortunately, nothing seems like it's going to change. The facts simply haven't changed. People are still being murdered by people who shouldn't have access to guns. Every now and again, a lot of people die at the same time. It seems from memory as if most of these guns have been purchased legally. There is obviously a change that needs to be made but it doesn't seem as though enough people want to make it.

The whole Second Amendment bollocks is a joke but people cling onto their own incorrect interpretations of it with religious zeal so it's not going to change any time soon. What a shame.

Oh, and can we PLEASE stop putting so much focus on the perpetrators of these horrible crimes. Understanding why someone did something is important but digging around for every sordid detail of their lives contributes nothing and helps solve nothing. The level of background checks that go on AFTER the fact are way more intense than the ones used to decide whether somebody should be sold weaponry in the first place.
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Postby Feydakin » Sun Jun 19, 2016 3:24 pm

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Postby cerrodepedro » Sun Jun 19, 2016 5:14 pm

Brewtality wrote:This is such a valuable discussion to have BUT it's the same discussion which was had the last time this happened. And the time before that. And the time before that. And so on, and so on. It's also the same discussion which will be had the next time this happens and unfortunately, nothing seems like it's going to change. The facts simply haven't changed. People are still being murdered by people who shouldn't have access to guns. Every now and again, a lot of people die at the same time. It seems from memory as if most of these guns have been purchased legally. There is obviously a change that needs to be made but it doesn't seem as though enough people want to make it.

The whole Second Amendment bollocks is a joke but people cling onto their own incorrect interpretations of it with religious zeal so it's not going to change any time soon. What a shame.

Oh, and can we PLEASE stop putting so much focus on the perpetrators of these horrible crimes. Understanding why someone did something is important but digging around for every sordid detail of their lives contributes nothing and helps solve nothing. The level of background checks that go on AFTER the fact are way more intense than the ones used to decide whether somebody should be sold weaponry in the first place.


AMEN. This was perpetuated against LGBTQ+ victims. Some exported flavor of Islam does not account for that level of homophobia and transphobia. I'm going to say that socially homophobia and transphobia are still entirely too acceptable in at least US American society. Internalized homophobia is also anything but discouraged.

I feel like in this case, as far as my personal enrichment goes, as far as actionable intelligence goes, turning the issue exclusively to a debate on firearms in the USA distracts from what we should learn from this. Sure, we can talk about firearms. I posit that it's kind of not smart to mix substances and firearms. I also hear that there were a couple of folks who might have been armed. But this is a horror done against the LGBTQ+ community. As Corgimom pointed out, there aren't that many mass shootings we have recorded that specifically target LGBTQ+ people this way.

Whether you're a Christian or a Muslim zealot (take away the land and riches from Western Christianity and I absolutely believe you'd find more behaviors comparable to attacks we label as terrorism), the homophobia and transphobia contained in your teachings, in your ideology, contributes to this violence, allows it to fester, and that conversation needs to not end. It should dominate reporting on this story (but it has not).
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Postby Feydakin » Sun Jun 19, 2016 5:22 pm

I don't like bringing up firearm control every time there is violent crime around the world either, I hate it in fact. However, as a defender of the Second Amendment and the rest of the Constitution I won't stay quiet when other people start pointing fingers at the wrong issues and try to take away or abridge our rights.
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Postby cerrodepedro » Sun Jun 19, 2016 6:30 pm

Yeah, don't see it as important. Second Amendment isn't getting eroded any time soon. I do see more queer people getting murdered on a much more regular basis than non-queer people, though. That's definitely happening.
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Postby Psy » Sun Jun 19, 2016 9:14 pm

ALSO, IT'S A FUCKING AMENDMENT. AMEND IT AGAIN.
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Postby Feydakin » Sun Jun 19, 2016 9:25 pm

The point is, there is absolutely no need to... it's been defended for the past 225 years and will remain unchanged. It's simple and clear.
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