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PostPosted: Sun Feb 14, 2016 5:44 am 
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Masked Midnight wrote:
What do y'all think of gun control and background checks in general and, more specifically, do you believe that the President's latest executive action is in the interest of American security? What is your ideal gun policy?

I don't see why the same public safety regulations afforded in other areas of society (food safety, car manufacturing, driving laws, etc) shouldn't also be afforded to firearm acquisition, especially given the high rates of gun violence in the United States. People can talk academically about Constitutional rights, but there's an actual death toll punctuating this discussion. Whether gun control/regulations are beneficial should be approached on a paradigm of public safety. Personally, I don't have any solid opinions about gun control right now (the evidence seems to have yielded mixed findings), but I don't see the 2nd Amendment as being particularly relevant in a discussion where there are lives at risk.

Quote:
What is your ideal gun policy?

I wish I had an answer for this :P

What's yours?

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PostPosted: Sun Feb 14, 2016 11:08 pm 
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Relevant


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PostPosted: Mon Feb 15, 2016 6:04 am 
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Oh, yes, there's no denying that those types of cases are outliers and the reverse is far more likely. It's just something I saw in the news a while back and this thread brought it to my mind again.

In general I support increased background checks (for example, fixing the loophole that allowed Dylann Roof to acquire a firearm), but not much more. In my ideal world nobody would have guns, but that's obviously unfeasible, unrealistic, and unconstitutional. If a law-abiding citizen wants to get a gun there should be little in his or her way.


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PostPosted: Mon Feb 15, 2016 7:09 am 
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Masked Midnight wrote:

Interesting article (going by the abstract anyways - I don't have access to the whole thing :P ), but statistics from countries with gun bans (or at least very tight restrictions) show an obviously marked decrease in firearms-related homicides. I haven't done any more research to corroborate that, but its logic is self-explanatory. I'm sure I could find more. Additionally, I believe that article only concludes that higher gun ownership does not increase crime, but, going by the abstract, it doesn't address how crime rates are affected by lower rates of gun ownership. If you've read the whole thing, please correct me if I'm wrong.

Regardless, this Fordham Law Review article directly contradicts the notion that higher rates of gun ownership deters crime, and advocates for a pragmatic approach to gun control based on two principles: 1) increased legal liability and 2) reduced firearm availability. That's a policy I could get behind. ;)

This other Crime and Justice article further disputes the claims made by Gleck in regards to deterrence, although only a portion of the article deals with firearms. More broadly, the article questions the validity of deterrence-based legislation in general, including capital punishment, but firearms are mentioned (and Gleck's claims specifically).

Quote:
Where gun control is tried, it fails (Australia and some US cities such as Chicago).

Depends entirely on how its done, but much of the evidence remains consistent on this area: fewer guns means fewer gun-related homicides. This study examined firearm availability across 26 high-income countries in the 90s (the US being among them) and found that where guns were more available, there were more homicides. This 2001 study of 21 countries yielded similar results, and also studied gun ownership in correlation with suicide, assault, and robbery in addition to homicide. The UK is famous for its rigid gun control laws, and has one of the lowest rates of gun homicide in the world, according to a UN study. These statistics corroborate the rarity of gun-related homicides in the UK. Also worth noting is the small number of people shot dead by police in UK (as little as 30 over a 12-year period, according to an article in The Independent) as opposed to the high rate in the US.

Studies have also linked decreased availability to firearms to decreased suicide rates in Austria and the United States, the logic being that reduced access to means serves as a mitigating deterrent to suicide. A suicidal individual who'd be willing to shoot themselves for example may not be as willing to end their life through other measures.

America's lax gun regulation has also been linked to the illegal arming of Mexican cartels, diametrically opposed to Mexico's aims to reduce gun violence with strict regulation. This Boston College Law Review article is obviously coming from the perspective that fewer guns = fewer gun-related crimes.

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What is misunderstood is that 2nd Amendment is in the interest of public safety as the earlier study proves.

I was under the impression that the 2nd Amendment was included as a check on government tyranny, not in the interest of public safety. I'd contend that the former is legitimate insofar as it doesn't threaten public safety, but I don't believe that to be the case, going off the high rate of gun-crime in the US as opposed to the lower rates in European countries with higher restrictions. All of my uneasiness with gun accessibility stems entirely from a public safety perspective, which I feel trumps Constitutional rights. Hard statistics are more compelling to me than the theoretical, and I can't ignore the evidence.

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PostPosted: Tue Feb 16, 2016 9:39 pm 
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Quote:
Interesting article (going by the abstract anyways - I don't have access to the whole thing :P ), but statistics from countries with gun bans (or at least very tight restrictions) show an obviously marked decrease in firearms-related homicides.

Just because gun-related homicides went down doesn't mean homicide rates went down overall. In many European countries, gun violence is very uncommon, but knife-related violence and homicide is far higher than in the US. Take away their guns, they'll use their knives. Yes, guns are better at killing people than knives, but their better at deterring people than knives as well.

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PostPosted: Wed Feb 17, 2016 1:04 am 
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Cyberknight wrote:
Take away their guns, they'll use their knives. Yes, guns are better at killing people than knives, but their better at deterring people than knives as well.

Yes, that's the point. Knives are much less dangerous than guns and are more easily defended against. I'd rather a drunk person not be driving than in a car, where he can cause greater damage.

Quote:
Yes, guns are better at killing people than knives, but their better at deterring people than knives as well.

But then you have the problem of escalation. If you have easy access to a gun, it's likely that dangerous individuals do as well. Now instead of deterring knives, you're in the position of deterring other guns, with an immediately greater chance to cause collateral damage that might extend to bystanders.

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PostPosted: Wed Feb 17, 2016 1:21 am 
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Masked Midnight wrote:
Fewer guns = fewer gun-related crimes only works if it means fewer guns in the hands of criminals. That is impossible without strict immigration control.

Interestingly, there's evidence that suggests America's lax gun control laws are directly instrumental in arming Mexican cartels, intensifying violence in Mexico that extends into the US. Furthermore, there's other evidence that suggests a lack of means is enough of a deterrent for violent offenders in the US (spree shooters for example). If they don't have easy access to a gun, other, ultimately less dangerous means will become more appealing than going through the hassle of acquiring a gun.

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From your philosophy, you must be much more comfortable with the NSA than I am.

Not at all, given the government's tendency to overstep its jurisdiction to target individuals it views as a threat (which it did relentlessly during the McCarthy era). Regardless, I can't think of any examples in the last 30 years where standing up to the government would have required the ownership or use of firearms to injure and/or kill governmental representatives. Firearms as a check on tyranny isn't something I view as particularly relevant in modern society, especially in the age of social media where injusticices can go viral. An event as significant as Snowden's whistleblowing wouldn't have had as large an impact in the 80's or 90's, where information traveled more slowly and there were fewer outlets for public discourse. If anything, social media is posed to be a far greater check on federal overstep than firearms, and it's not something the Founders would have likely foreseen.

Quote:
You must also be more comfortable with the police state gunning down innocent minorities than I am.

lol, definitely not ;)

I believe I mentioned in my last post how UK police rarely shoot anyone because most of them don't carry firearms.

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PostPosted: Wed Feb 17, 2016 1:52 am 
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Yes, that's the point. Knives are much less dangerous than guns and are more easily defended against. I'd rather a drunk person not be driving than in a car, where he can cause greater damage.

If that's the case, why aren't homicide rates significantly higher in the US than in countries with gun control?

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PostPosted: Wed Feb 17, 2016 2:33 am 
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Cyberknight wrote:
Quote:
Yes, that's the point. Knives are much less dangerous than guns and are more easily defended against. I'd rather a drunk person not be driving than in a car, where he can cause greater damage.

If that's the case, why aren't homicide rates significantly higher in the US than in countries with gun control?

I imagine gun ownership among trained, law-abiding citizens is a mitigating deterrent up to a point, but I linked to two studies a couple posts ago that concluded that in countries where guns were more accessible, there were also more homicides (and I think those were specific to gun-homicides).

I can't deny the appeal of having every responsible citizen armed and trained to use guns in order to defend themselves and others, but not everyone has that motivation. The reality is that many people don't want to own guns or have the time or inclination to learn how to use them. That means for every trained, well-intentioned, law-abiding, gun-carrying citizen, there's a score of unarmed citizens susceptible to firearms that can be legally purchased by dangerous individuals. People like to say that if the victims in the Paris attack would have been allowed to carry guns, they would have been able to disarm the terrorists. I'd question how many of those individuals would have wanted to carry guns and learn how to use them even if they could.

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PostPosted: Wed Feb 17, 2016 6:57 am 
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I imagine gun ownership among trained, law-abiding citizens is a mitigating deterrent up to a point, but I linked to two studies a couple posts ago that concluded that in countries where guns were more accessible, there were also more homicides (and I think those were specific to gun-homicides).

Yeah, that's my point. There may have been more gun related homicides, but not more homicides over all, implying that gun ownership increases gun-related homicide, not overall homicide rates. :P

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PostPosted: Thu Feb 18, 2016 9:39 pm 
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You must also be more comfortable with the police state gunning down innocent minorities than I am.


For some reason, I don't think introducing more guns into these situations will reduce police shootings...

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PostPosted: Fri Feb 19, 2016 3:40 am 
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I disagree, but I think my feelings on why those shootings happen have already been discussed in depth elsewhere.

Just pointing out that supporting gun control does not mean I trust the government/law enforcement

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PostPosted: Tue Mar 01, 2016 4:36 am 
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Masked Midnight wrote:
Db8r_from_Dixie wrote:
I disagree, but I think my feelings on why those shootings happen have already been discussed in depth elsewhere.

Just pointing out that supporting gun control does not mean I trust the government/law enforcement
Sure. I was responding directly to Joe's philosophy, not any specific policy. I do not believe that public safety > other natural rights when the two are in conflict (notwithstanding the fact that government is tasked with protecting the public anyways).

I suppose I don't view gun ownership as an unalienable right just because it was mentioned in the Constitution.

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PostPosted: Wed Mar 02, 2016 2:44 am 
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Freedom of movement is a right. Having a driver's license is not. Self defense is a right, doesn't mean having a gun is.

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PostPosted: Wed Mar 02, 2016 12:45 pm 
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Quote:
Firearms would be uncontroversial if they didn't kill people


:lol: Ok, so...? They would also be less controversial if they could only be used for self defense but that isn't the reality.

Quote:
firearms are just a means to that right.


Yes, but they are not the only means to that right. Which means regulating/restricting their ownership does not violate a natural right. See my drivers license example. Walking/biking does not pose a significant public threat so there is no regulation of that type of movement. Driving a car turns the driver into a potentially deadly weapon, so that means of exercising your right to move freely is regulated.

Based on all the stand your ground laws being passed, I think your right to self defense is well protected

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PostPosted: Wed Mar 02, 2016 11:39 pm 
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Cars killing more people is why they are regulated. there are also limits on what cars can do - hence the term street legal. None of that abridges the natural right to freedom of movement. Which is my basic point: regulating guns does not abridge any natural right. And obesity is a canard because you can't kill someone else using obesity.

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the government has them, criminals have them, and law-abiding American citizens should too.


So your standard is that citizens should have access to any weapons technology available to the government or criminals? Or was that just a non sequitor?

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PostPosted: Thu Mar 03, 2016 5:13 am 
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So tanks, 50 cal machine guns, armored personnel carriers, predator drones are all fair game?

I am not responding to a claim of constitutionality because I know we disagree on that. I am merely postulating that gun ownership is not a natural right.

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PostPosted: Fri Mar 04, 2016 4:58 pm 
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Nuclear weapons? [/just curious]

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PostPosted: Fri Mar 04, 2016 10:28 pm 
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Yes. So tanks, 50 cal machine guns, armored personnel carriers, predator drones are all fair game?


Quite frankly that sounds more like a war zone in a 3rd world country than a world in which I want to live.

Quote:
Well, the Second Amendment is the issue in this thread. ;)


I only jumped in to respond to your claim that every right in the constitution is a natural right. The right to own a gun is at most a civil right not a natural right.

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PostPosted: Sat Mar 05, 2016 6:03 pm 
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Want to respond the the nukes question?


Glad you can see that constitutional right =/= natural right

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