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Shots Fired At Connecticut Elementary School, Multiple Deaths Reported

An elementary school in Newton, Connecticut has been the scene of a mass shooting:

Multiple people, including children, have been killed in a shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School.

The number of dead is unclear, but there are at least 20 shooting victims. Many of the shootings took place in a kindergarten classroom, sources said.

A person believed to be a shooter is dead. Earlier reports of a second shooter are unconfirmed.

ABC News reported through federal, local officials that more than a dozen people, including children, were shot and killed.

Police were still searching the school at 11 a.m., and police dogs had been brought in. Around noon, the triage area was broken down, stretchers were taken away and the SWAT team left the building.

Shortly after 9:40 a.m., police reported that a shooter was in the main office of the school. A person in one room had “numerous gunshot wounds,” police said.

Groups of students — some crying, some holding hands — were being escorted away from the school by their teachers. Some students were still in the school at 10:30 a.m., parents said.

School and local emergency officials are accounting for the children, who will be released to their parents to get them home. A staging area has been set up at the Sandy Hook fire department, directly in front of the school.

Frustrated parents are trying to get information from officials, who are still actively searching the school.

Eight-year-old Alexis Wasik, a third-grader at the school, said police were checking everybody inside the school before they were escorted to the firehouse.

“We had to walk with a partner,” she said.

One child leaving the school said that there was shattered glass everywhere. A police officer ran into the classroom and told them to run outside and keep going until the reach the firehouse.

Dozens of state troopers are on the scene assisting local police. Heavily armed police gathered in front of the school around 10:45 a.m., and a number of stretchers were set up.

Further details from CBS News:

A shooting at a Connecticut elementary school Friday left several children and the gunman dead, law enforcement sources tell CBS News. At least one teacher was wounded in the shooting that sent frightened pupils into the parking lot.

It is unclear if there was more than one gunman at the school.

Law enforcement sources told CBS News senior correspondent John Miller that preliminary and unconfirmed information indicates that the shooter was the father of a student.

The shooter was killed and apparently had two guns, a person with knowledge of the shooting told The Associated Press. The person spoke on condition of anonymity because the investigation was still under way.

It wasn’t clear how many people were injured at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown. CBS Hartford affiliate WFSB-TV reports around 600 students attend the school.

Connecticut State Police spokesman Lt. Paul Vance described the situation to CBS New York station WCBS-AM as a “very serious school shooting.”

A dispatcher at the Newtown Volunteer Ambulance Corps said a teacher had been shot in the foot and taken to Danbury Hospital.

Stephen Delgiadice said his 8-year-old daughter heard two big bangs and teachers told her to get in a corner. His daughter was fine.

“It’s alarming, especially in Newtown, Connecticut, which we always thought was the safest place in America,” he said.

Lisa Bailey, a Newtown resident with three children in Newtown schools, told CBSNewYork.com, “Newtown is a quiet town. I’d never expect this to happen here. It’s so scary. Your kids are not safe anywhere.”

Multiple news agencies are reporting different things and it’s difficult to know what’s truth and what’s rumor. The ABC report of more than a dozen dead is a relatively recent one and hasn’t been confirmed. Other reports have indicated that at least two of the dead include the school’s Principal and a school psychologist. Other reports have stated that the shooter, who has been killed, was the parent of one of the students at the school but that hasn’t been confirmed, and neither have the initial reports that there was a second gunman who was arrested on the scene.

Updates to follow as warranted.

Update: CBS News is now reporting that as many as 27 people are dead:

NEWTOWN, Conn. (CBSNewYork) - Twenty-seven people are dead including 14 children after a gunman opened fire at an elementary school in Newtown, CBS News reports.

Officials say the gunman was also killed and apparently had two guns. It happened around 9:40 a.m. Friday at Sandy Hook Elementary School.

At least three people were injured, two children and an adult. All three were taken to Danbury Hospital.

An 8-year-old student told CBS 2-s Lou Young he was on his way to the school’s office when he saw the gunman.

“I saw some of the bullets going down the hall and then a teacher pulled me into her classroom,” he said.

There is also a report that the gunman is believed to be a 20 year old man from New Jersey rather than a student’s parent. What connection he has to an elementary school in a relatively rural area of Connecticut is unclear. Also, the Hartford Courant is reporting that an entire classroom of children is unaccounted for, but this may just be students who ran off on their own rather than going to the fire station next to the school. Needless to say, this is just horrific.

Update: There was a Connecticut State Police news conference at 1pm today but very little information was released, including no confirmation of the number of dead and injured as of yet. That may be because families are still being notified. In any event, CNN is reporting that the shooting suspect is being identified as Ryan Lanza, a 20 year old former resident of Newtown who now lives in Hoboken. According to other reports, the suspects home in New Jersey has been searched and a body has been found that may or may not be his mother. Hoboken is about an hour and a half away from Newtown, although driving time would likely be longer if the trip were made in the morning rush hour.

Update: The New York Post is reporting that the shooter’s name is actually Adam Lanza and that his brother, Ryan Lanza, is the one being questioned by police. Additionally, it appears that Lanza’s mother, who was a kindergarten teacher at the school, may have been the initial target in that nearly all the deaths took place in her classroom. Also, there appears to be a dead body at the mother’s home in Newtown and the suspect’s home in Hoboken.

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About Doug Mataconis
Doug holds a B.A. in Political Science from Rutgers University and J.D. from George Mason University School of Law. He joined the staff of OTB in May, 2010 and also writes at Below The Beltway. Follow Doug on Twitter | Facebook

Comments

  1. Brummagem Joe says:

    I live at the CT shore and read these reports an hour ago. I’m going to withold comment for the moment until we have more info it’s too shocking.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  2. Ben says:

    ABC news’ latest update:

    “12: 47 a.m.: More than 20 people, most of them young children, killed in shooting, according to law enforcement sources.”

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  3. Rafer Janders says:

    @Brummagem Joe:

    I’m going to withold comment for the moment

    Well I’m not: the easy availability of guns, and the attendant fetishization of guns in our culture, are a plague.

    Highly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 42 Thumb down 9

  4. Ben says:

    CNN is now also reporting “close to 20″ people killed.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  5. Brummagem Joe says:

    @Rafer Janders:

    Otherwise I might say something I might regret.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  6. Chris Berez says:

    This is so awful and so incomprehensible. I just can’t wrap my mind around how someone could do this. Murdering innocent people is always horrific, but I just can’t comprehend walking into a school and slaughtering children.

    This is just a terrible, terrible situation. Just stomach churning.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 0

  7. michael reynolds says:

    No one mention guns. That’s not allowed.

    Guns are needed so morons can fight the coming race war and resist the perfidious government. The government that is at the moment caring for traumatized children and cleaning up the bodies.

    This is a sick obsession.

    Highly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 40 Thumb down 9

  8. Bernieyeball says:

    Welcome to 2nd Amendment America.
    People kill people with guns in this country because they can.
    I suspect Citizen Floreck and his ilk will blame the young, innocent victims of this bloodbath for not being armed as they have in the past.

    Eric Florack says:
    Saturday, July 21, 2012 at 10:56
    Those people who got shot, those who died, were waiting for the police, thinking they had no need for self-protection… that the government was able to protect them. They were dependent on the falicy that the job of protecting them was the government’s and also that the government’s war on individuals using their second amendment rights to carry firearms, was sufficient for their protection.

    Think, now; what would have happened, had just one armed citizen been in that room? Just one person who wasn’t a sheep? That one armed citizen could have stopped the situation long prior to the arrival of the police. Many lives would have been saved, many injuries averted.

    Here’s the solution. More guns in the hands of citizens. Less dependance on government to do our jobs… including self-protection… for us.

    Highly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 21 Thumb down 5

  9. Brummagem Joe says:

    Looks like 27 dead….18 children…..the massace of the innocents……another victory for the NRA

    Highly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 22 Thumb down 7

  10. EddieInCA says:

    Kids… Man.

    Kids…

    Fucking kids…

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 14 Thumb down 0

  11. Rafer Janders says:

    @Brummagem Joe:

    Otherwise I might say something I might regret.

    Go for it. Seriously. If not now, when?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 1

  12. EddieInCA says:

    Dr. Joyner, Doug and Dr. Taylor –

    My apologies for the post being held up in Moderation.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  13. Bleev K says:

    Land of the free, home of the cowards.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

  14. Anderson says:

    I’ve been freaked out by this all morning, probably because I have a 2d-grader myself, not in CT however.

    I don’t know what to do. Rounding up all the guns isn’t politically possible. Armed guards everywhere may be the best we can do.

    But we need to support the anti-gun movement, however hopeless its stated goals are, because that’s the only way the NRA/GOP axis of death is going to get scared enough to agree to some reasonable reforms. Whatever those are. I can’t even think straight.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 9 Thumb down 2

  15. carpeicthus says:

    The same exact thing just happened in China, but without the guns. Current fatality count? Zero.

    It’s a sick world, but sick people don’t need to have easy access to handguns at their moment of weakness.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 8 Thumb down 3

  16. JKB says:

    It has been against federal law for 22 years for non-law enforcement to carry or discharge a firearm on school property. Well, except for a short time till an unconstitutional issue was repaired.

    Tell me more about these criminals who obey the law…

    Oh, and in an interesting quirk, the law prohibits anyone but on-dutylaw enforcement and contract security from acting in self defense or defense of others by discharging their weapon in a school zone. So it would be unlawful for a licensed carrier or off-duty police officer passerby to act to protect the children from a murderer.

    Poorly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 38

  17. Brummagem Joe says:

    @Rafer Janders:

    Go for it. Seriously. If not now, when?

    I’m saving it up.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  18. Brummagem Joe says:

    @carpeicthus:

    I don’t give a flying fuck about China or India or the Congo because I don’t live there. I do live here however and I presume you do.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 1

  19. Brummagem Joe says:

    @carpeicthus:

    Apparently I’ve been placed in moderation because I’ve used a naughty word so I’ll give you the bowdlerised version

    I don’t give a flying “possum” about China or India or the Congo because I don’t live there. I do live here however and I presume you do.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

  20. Geek, Esq. says:

    American society long ago decided that the lives of children were an acceptable price to pay for the preservation of our gun culture.

    Cue the NRA gun nut crowd who will say the only solution is to require teachers to pack heat.

    Highly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 29 Thumb down 3

  21. CB says:

    It is not strictly about gun control. Its all about changing the gun culture, and breaking down the fetishization of firearms. Although I’m still not sure how that would change the outcome in this situation, short of eradicating every weapon in the country. Obviously not going to happen.

    I consider myself pretty thoroughly desensitized by mass media in general, but damn, this is shocking to the core.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 13 Thumb down 0

  22. Geek, Esq. says:

    @CB:

    The problem is that the gun nuts–the millions upon millions of them–love guns more than they value the lives of other people’s children.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 9 Thumb down 1

  23. Woody says:

    The most profound disappointment I have had as a proud American (born 1963) is the increasingly blasé attitudes conservatives have toward the children of other people.

    Highly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 25 Thumb down 1

  24. Motopilot says:

    Note to politicians/policy makers: Are your “thoughts and prayers” the best you can do?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 9 Thumb down 0

  25. CB says:

    @Geek, Esq.:

    Well, im with everyone here spiritually on the issue, but the guns didnt make them do what they did. They made it easier, no doubt, but they hardly provided the motive, whatever it may be. Id just be careful with how we frame the issue, especially given how little is known.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 1

  26. Geek, Esq. says:

    @CB:

    All you need to know is that amongst the rightwingers out there, the reaction to this incident is one of horror.

    Horror at the prospect of gun control legislation.

    The 18 dead children are much less disturbing to them.

    It’s a sickness in our culture, and sadly it is never, ever going away.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 14 Thumb down 2

  27. stonetools says:

    Obviously if those six year olds had been concealed carrying Glocks, they would have defended themselves…

    I’m wondering if there is such a thing as national insanity. Only an insane country would have a policy when things like this are allowed to happen routinely, because of a questionable interpretation of a 225 year old provision relating to an obsolete method of community defense.
    Soon we will have some one turning up here to discuss the finer points of why assault weapons shouldn’t be regulated, you see, because assault rifles differ from battle rifles which differ from blah blah blah…

    Eric Loomis posted this at Lawyers, Guns and Money:

    At what point do we start holding the National Rifle Association morally responsible for all these shootings? At what point do we get over our idiotic national love of guns and start acting like grownups in this country?

    Talk about your gun rights all you want. People also have a right not be shot in movie theaters and schools. That’s a right far more important than your ability to own an AK-47.

    ….It seems that up to 27 people are dead. Wayne LaPierre should be in prison. You are goddamn right I am politicizing this tragedy. The NRA is a criminal organization and should be treated as such. Even if it is 1 person dead.

    I concur.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 13 Thumb down 1

  28. michael reynolds says:

    This is a hearts and minds campaign. It needs to be as unacceptable to own a gun as it is to run a dog fight. Society has to become intolerant of these people. They have to be made to feel outside the pale. We should not let our children visit homes where we know there are guns. When we hear people say they own a gun the reaction should be shock. Right now a cigarette smoker feels more ostracized than a gun owner, we need that to change.

    Highly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 31 Thumb down 13

  29. Mikey says:

    It’s not just “gun culture.” American culture in general seems prone to default to violence in ways other places just don’t.

    Something I noticed while living in Germany: television programs have far fewer guns and far more boobs than those in America.

    I think this indicates something unhealthy on this side of the Atlantic.

    Highly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 20 Thumb down 1

  30. Geek, Esq. says:

    @michael reynolds:

    Having grown up in a gun-loving, deep red state, these people love their guns more than they love their own children.

    They won’t care what us East coast liberal types think of us. They joke about shooting us.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 8 Thumb down 1

  31. matt says:

    You people are being stupid. Lets blame the tool and ignore the culture that glorifies violence and death. Lets focus on the inanimate object and not the sick loser behind the trigger.

    The single biggest mass murder in this country didn’t involve a single gun. The second biggest mass murder in this country didn’t involve a gun either..

    What will be enough for you people? England’s level of gun laws? Well sorry but there’s still LOTS of murders going on there. So many murders that the have moved on to banning samurai swords. The stab proof knife was revealed in England and is probably a short hop away from being required. Where does this stop?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 10

  32. Brummagem Joe says:

    @CB:

    Well, im with everyone here spiritually on the issue, but the guns didnt make them do what they did.

    Well we don’t actually know what made them do it but it hardly matters in the face of statistical probability. We have an estimated 6 million people (about 2% of the population) with serious mental health problems. This is conservative when one considers the number on mind altering drugs of one sort or another. There are then about 350 million guns in circulation and they can be obtained easier than candy. Then most states allow the concealed carrying of weapons. Thus it is a statistical certainty that mass shootings will occur at regular intervals…..there have been thousands of them during the last seven years…..Brady keeps a record. This is just the latest.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 1

  33. matt says:

    @Mikey: Be careful because you’re not allowed to bring logic into this discussion. If you’re not screaming BAN GUNS then you’re some mindless conservative…

    I have also noticed the massive difference in culture between here and various places in Europe. Over here it’s fine to show someone getting shot in the head but you better not show a boob…I found the exact opposite situation in Europe..

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 8 Thumb down 2

  34. matt says:

    @Brummagem Joe: I hate to bring facts in to interrupt your scare fest but less then 1% of those with a CCW will ever commit a crime.

    Getting a CCW involves an investment of money and time to complete training requirements.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 3

  35. Locke says:

    @Rafer Janders:

    There are plenty of countries in the world that don’t have the right to bear arms in their constitution. This one does. You could always move elsewhere. I would hate to see the mess it would make to try to undo the 2nd amendment.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 6

  36. matt says:

    @michael reynolds: You’re an asshole. Seriously a complete and utter clueless asshole. You’re personifying the uptown limousine liberal with this post.

    Live on a farm sometime and you’ll quickly find the need for a gun.

    Poorly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 7 Thumb down 22

  37. matt says:

    Seriously y’all acting like a bunch of loony rightwingers detached from reality in this thread.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 9

  38. Brummagem Joe says:

    @Geek, Esq.:

    American society long ago decided that the lives of children were an acceptable price to pay for the preservation of our gun culture.

    Basically this is it. We’ll live with these mass shootings because after all it’s not going to affect us….until it does of course. Then we have crocodile tears from the politicians who support the gun lobby, the endless rationalisations from the gun enthusiasts, and then it’s on to the next edition of American Idol. Who know this might be the straw that brakes the camel’s back but rest assured the NRA and its sympathisers are preparing push back.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 8 Thumb down 4

  39. Anderson says:

    The authors of the Second Amendment had no notion of widely-available, readily-affordable semiautomatic weapons that could fire 100s of times in just a few minutes.

    What happened in Newtown, what’s happened at that Oregon mall and at Columbine and at literally more places than we can remember, is not what they sought to protect or enable.

    The right for everyone to own a semiautomatic weapon is not a liberty worth protecting. This needs to stop.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 13 Thumb down 2

  40. stonetools says:

    @JKB:

    Tell me more about these criminals who obey the law…

    It isn’t about criminals opening the law, moron. Its about crazy people having easy access to super deadly firearms because morons like you wouldn’t law reasonable restrictions on sale of those arms that would allow for background checks, registration, and regulations to assure that the people who acquire those weapons are sane and understand how to safely use and secure such weapons.

    Its not like this is rocket science. There are plenty of countries ( Israel, Switzerland , for two) who have “well regulated militias” and also intelligent gun control laws.But, hey moron, keep f&*king that chicken-while children die.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 8 Thumb down 2

  41. michael reynolds says:

    @matt:

    You need a lot of nine millimeter handguns on a farm? Moron.

    How about the AR15 the guy in Portland used? Need that on the farm? Moron.

    Highly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 23 Thumb down 8

  42. Brummagem Joe says:

    @matt:

    but less then 1% of those with a CCW will ever commit a crime.

    Of what relevance is this to the fact that we have about 6 million crazies and 350 million guns in circulation?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 8 Thumb down 2

  43. David M says:

    Congratulations NRA, you win again.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 7 Thumb down 4

  44. matt says:

    @Brummagem Joe: My god you sound like a right winger talking about libersl and abortion. THEM LIBERALS LOVE KILLING BABIES BECAUSE THEY LOVE DEATH MORE THEN KIDS!!!

    You need to get a grip and try visiting with reality one of these days. Gun owners are just like you and we find this incident to be just as horrific as you find it. We don’t “love our guns more then our children” we just realize that personal responsibility has to start somewhere. We also realize that without guns people are still going to kill each other.

    Like I stated earlier there are plenty of countries with far stricter gun control laws then ours and they still have murder and crime (sometimes almost as bad as the USA’s worst cities). We have mountains of data showing that gun control has little end effect on crime. Maybe we should start looking at effective methods of crime prevention?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 10

  45. matt says:

    @michael reynolds: A .45 is effective because you can utilize a holster while out on your land. If a wild animal attacks (which I have had happen) then you can quickly bring effective stopping power to bare. Now a rifle would technically be better but I wouldn’t want to carry around a 10 lb weapon while trying to do chores..

    The .223 or 5.56 is a common round and is utilized by hunting rifles. So any attempts at banning the AR15 would result in many hunting rifles being banned. The AR15 itself is effective when hunting hog or other nuisance animals. I personally use a 7.62×39 AK clone for hog hunting because the round has similar stopping power as a 30 30 when used on targets closer then 150 yards. Past 150 yards the round loses effectiveness quickly where as a conventional hunting rifle’s round is deadly for potentially a mile or more.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 11

  46. David M says:

    @matt:

    We also realize that without guns people are still going to kill each other.

    Guns seem to make it easier though.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 13 Thumb down 1

  47. Brummagem Joe says:

    @matt:

    Live on a farm sometime and you’ll quickly find the need for a gun.

    Actually I lived on a farm when I was a kid……admittedly something of a hobby farm……but I don’t remember my old man having handguns and AK 47’s. He had a couple of nice shotguns and one sporting rifle.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 10 Thumb down 3

  48. matt says:

    @David M: So do knives cars bows xbows swords fertilizer etc etc..

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 4

  49. Locke says:

    @michael reynolds:

    So let me see if I understand your psyop correctly, we need to make gun ownership as unacceptable as dog fighting. Right?

    And your method of choice here seems to be that guns are only for racist morons.

    So we’ll use the tried and true method of demonising by false association. In this case the race card. I think you’re an idiot quite frankly. And oh how quickly you swooped in on this tragedy to push your anti-gun rhetoric. Why don’t you just move somewhere that is more in line with your ideologies?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 11

  50. matt says:

    @Brummagem Joe: That sporting rifle probably used the exact same action as an ak or ar or any number of scary looking guns..

    Meaning anything banning the scary looking guns will also result in the banning of the sporting rifle. Much like the AWB succeeded in banning bayonets and some hunting shotguns due to the language of the bill..

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 5

  51. David M says:

    @matt:

    So do knives cars bows xbows swords fertilizer

    That’s pretty much my point. Killing 27 people is easier with a gun than with the things you mentioned.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 2

  52. Anderson says:

    Gun owners are just like you and we find this incident to be just as horrific as you find it.

    Really? Prove it. Support a magazine cap. Support something other than the status quo that gave us 18 dead kids and counting.

    Or maybe you’re just fine with how things are going. Tell us which it is.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 12 Thumb down 4

  53. matt says:

    @David M: Negative. The fertilizer alone has been used to kill hundreds with relative ease.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 6

  54. matt says:

    @Anderson: A magazine cap would have no effect on these shootings. I can change a magazine in seconds and even if you make a magazine lock mandatory the criminals won’t care.

    If anything it’s actually dumb to use the larger capacity magazines because they tend to cause loading issues. There’s a reason why the military sticks to the 30 round magazines and that’s because anything larger tends to be far less reliable.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 6

  55. rudderpedals says:

    @Locke:

    I would hate to see the mess it would make to try to undo the 2nd amendment.

    Nevermind your squeamishness. If repeal actually was in the cards you’d support a bloody mess, wouldn’t you? Seems to me half of the plain language of the 2nd amendment – the bit about a militia – is now precatory and to be ignored. Plain language + originalism = a right to walk around with a musket, halbard, mace, etc.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 2

  56. David M says:

    @Anderson:

    Really? Prove it. Support a magazine cap. Support something other than the status quo that gave us 18 dead kids and counting.

    Or maybe you’re just fine with how things are going. Tell us which it is.

    This.

    (Although they’ve already said they are fine with how things are going.)

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 2

  57. Brummagem Joe says:

    @matt:
    My god you sound like a right winger talking about libersl and abortion. THEM LIBERALS LOVE KILLING BABIES BECAUSE THEY LOVE DEATH MORE THEN KIDS!!!

    Actually I’ve just stated reality…..you just don’t like it. And don’t try the crime sleight of hand…..we don’t have reams of information proving there no connection between tight gun regulation and gun death. I’m sure the crime rate in Britain is just as high as here but they don’t have around 9000 gun homicide and a mass shooting every two weeks.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 11 Thumb down 2

  58. george says:

    This is just insane.

    And I don’t understand the opposition to gun control. There’s already limitations to what weapons are allowed – even the NRA doesn’t seem to think that everyone should have a right to own their own nuclear weapon – so its just a question of where the line is drawn. Repeating firearms is clearly drawing the line too far on the mass destruction side.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 8 Thumb down 2

  59. matt says:

    @rudderpedals: A lot of modern things would suddenly be i illegal or impossible to regulate if we took your logic to the full extent.

    @Brummagem Joe: MY god man did you not watch the sudden increase in crime rates in Australia after they passed the heavy gun control laws in teh 90s? Did you not notice that teh AWB had NO effect on gun crime? Or that when the AWB expired there was no noticeable effect on gun crime? Get a grip.

    England has about 1/3rd the crime we do but there’s far more going on then just laws. There’s a different culture there where violence isn’t worshiped like it is here. Like I said in another post over there it’s fine to show boobs but violence is censored on the TV. Here you can show all kinds of horrible violence on TV but you BETTER NOT SHOW A BOOB!!!11

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 5

  60. Brummagem Joe says:

    @matt:

    Meaning anything banning the scary looking guns will also result in the banning of the sporting rifle.

    Don’t be stupid that sporting rifle wasn’t remotely like a Glock or assault rifle ……and who said anything about banning sporting rifles other than you

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 3

  61. PJ says:

    @matt:

    Like I stated earlier there are plenty of countries with far stricter gun control laws then ours and they still have murder and crime (sometimes almost as bad as the USA’s worst cities).

    Which countries?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 10 Thumb down 1

  62. David M says:

    @matt:

    Well, I for one salute you in your work in defending the culture of violence and the NRA.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 8 Thumb down 4

  63. matt says:

    @Brummagem Joe: You’re showing how completely and utterly clueless about guns you are. The action is actually VERY MUCH the same as some of the scary guns. Semi auto AKs and semi auto ARs are NOT assault rifles. No one in their right mind would want to take one of those into battle. An m16 or a m4 with 3 round burst capability is an assault weapon.

    It’s blatantly obvious you don’t have a desire to educate yourself about guns. Despite this I’m going to offer a link to a video to you in the hopes that you WILL watch it.
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ysf8x477c30

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 6

  64. stonetools says:

    @matt:

    Like I stated earlier there are plenty of countries with far stricter gun control laws then ours and they still have murder and crime (sometimes almost as bad as the USA’s worst cities). We have mountains of data showing that gun control has little end effect on crime. Maybe we should start looking at effective methods of crime prevention?

    I’m pretty sure you’re lying on this, but if you have such evidence by all means present it.
    Japan has effective gun control.
    They have as few as two handgun murders a year . That’s not a typo. TWO. And somehow they avoid being a Stalinist hellhole.
    Folks, we don’t have to live this way.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 13 Thumb down 1

  65. Brummagem Joe says:

    @matt:

    England has about 1/3rd the crime we do but there’s far more going on then just laws.

    Untrue. Their crime rates per capita aren’t massively different than ours. Rapes, burglaries etc …..the difference is they have under a 100 gun homicides a year and we have around 9000

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 9 Thumb down 2

  66. Brummagem Joe says:

    @stonetools:

    I’m pretty sure you’re lying on this

    He is of course….he’s relating it to overall crime rather than murders and particularly murders committed with firearms…..btw have you noticed how promptly he showed up here when this topic came……NRA boiler room?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 4

  67. legion says:

    @matt:

    So any attempts at banning the AR15 would result in many hunting rifles being banned.

    Your other comments are reasonable, but this statement is incorrect. There are lots of ways to restrict combat-grade weapons without affecting utility/home defense purposes. For just one example, if you actually need more than 5-10 rounds to defend yourself, either from an animal or a home invasion, you’re going to die no matter how big your clip is.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 7 Thumb down 1

  68. matt says:

    @stonetools:/facepalm. For the first part all you have to do is look at the publicly available crime statistics. Granted this will require you to invest a little of your time and to risk undermining your preconceived notions but I promise you it’s worth it.

    As for Japan has an overall low murder rate due to a variety of reasons. But you are correct in that the vast majority of Murders committed in Japan do not involve a gun.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 9

  69. mattb says:

    @Brummagem Joe:

    Don’t be stupid that sporting rifle wasn’t remotely like a Glock or assault rifle ……and who said anything about banning sporting rifles other than you

    In Matt’s defense — and to make sure we are all on the same page — people tend to use “assault rifle” and “assault weapon” interchangeably.

    Assualt rifles (which means fully automatic) are already banned in the US. Assault weapons is a relatively modern category, typically used to describe semi-automatic rifles with detachable magazines, currently include a number of hunting rifle models.

    As I have suggested in the past on these sorts of threads, it’s of much more value to discuss firearms in terms of how they work, rather than using largely useless labels like “hunting rifle” or “Assault Weapon.’

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 0

  70. Ben says:

    They’re now saying that the shooter’s mother was a teacher at the school.

    They’re also saying there is a dead body at the suspect’s house. Looks like the rampage started before the school.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  71. Jack says:

    @michael reynolds: Micheal,
    I need a semi automatic be it Glock or AR-15 because F-U. That’s right I don’t need a reason. BTW I’m a smoker and a gun owner so in your eyes I’m probably worse than a child molester, yet none of my guns have ever killed anyone. They must be malfunctioning. It’s not the weapon A-hole. It’s the dipS^&t behind it. Blame the crazy. The Oregon guy stole his weapon, how in the hell do you prevent that?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 11

  72. matt says:

    @legion: Wrong the AR 15 is NOT a combat grade weapon and you show a great deal of ignorance by making such a statement. The action of what you’re calling “combat grade weapons” are standardized semiautomatic actions and are present in a wide variety of hunting rifles. ANy banning of those actions would result in the banning of all those hunting rifles.

    @Brummagem Joe: So murder only counts when it involves a gun?

    I’ve been posting here for over seven years so don’t start with that crap about me just now showing up as if that matters..

    Hell I think it’s been longer then seven years. This was one of the first political blogs to become part of my daily read.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 6

  73. Brummagem Joe says:

    @matt:

    You’re showing how completely and utterly clueless about guns you are..

    Funny that…..I carried one professionally for awhile when I worked for the govt in the sixties and until a few years ago I used to do a bit game shooting.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 3

  74. grumpy realist says:

    @matt: So Matt, what do you suggest we do so that tragedies like this don’t happen? Or are we just supposed to wring our hands and pray that it never happens to “our” kids?

    It seems the NRA won’t be satisfied until everyone is walking around with a gun.

    There are societies like that. Somalia. Parts of Mexico. War zones…..

    Ever notice that they don’t have that much in the way of GDP?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 4

  75. Brummagem Joe says:

    @matt:

    So murder only counts when it involves a gun?

    No we jsut have many more of them because guns are much more efficient killing machines than kitchen knives or spades.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 8 Thumb down 2

  76. matt says:

    @grumpy realist: What do we do when there’s a massive freeway pile up? what do we do when a plane crashes killing all aboard? What do we do when something terrible happens?

    Do we jump out and go OMG BAN CARS PLANES PEOPLE!! No. I’d prefer we wait for all the facts to come in and then consider what could of been done to prevent or decrease this tragedy. The fact of the matter is that terrible things will happen.

    @Brummagem Joe: Doesn’t matter I treat murder as murder. In your world someone being killed by a bomb or a knife doesn’t matter..

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 5

  77. Brummagem Joe says:

    @mattb:

    bollocks this isn’t about terminology ….there’s no comparison between my old man’s sporting rifle and what this guy is talking about

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 2

  78. David M says:

    @grumpy realist:

    You wrongly assume that matt, the NRA and a good portion of the country actually have a problem with tragedies like this. This is an acceptable outcome for them, as long as there aren’t any new gun control laws, however reasonable those laws are.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 4

  79. matt says:

    @Ben: These kinds of rampages seem to start before they reach their destination. I have no real statistics on this though.

    According to available data England’s murder rate is about 1/3rd of ours.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 1

  80. rudderpedals says:

    @matt:

    A lot of modern things would suddenly be i illegal or impossible to regulate if we took your logic to the full extent.

    How so? It’s not clear why it would be a bad thing to give effect to the words “A well regulated militia being necessary to the security of a free state …”

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 0

  81. matt says:

    @David M: You’re making all kinds of assumptions about me. Instead I suggest you actually read what I typed. I never once said I had no problem with this and your refusal to acknowledge such an obvious fact does not bode well for you.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 3

  82. Jack says:

    @rudderpedals: The part about the militia is a dependent clause, it is prefacatory. Please read the following. A well educated electorate, being necessary being necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and read books shall not be infringed. Does this mean only those elegible to vote can read books? No. All the people read books, and that right shall no be infringed.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 1

  83. mattb says:

    @legion:

    There are lots of ways to restrict combat-grade weapons without affecting utility/home defense purposes. For just one example, if you actually need more than 5-10 rounds to defend yourself, either from an animal or a home invasion, you’re going to die no matter how big your clip is.

    “Combat-grade” is another useless term for this discussion. Military firearms — i.e. fully automatic weapons — are already illegal. A semi-automatic rifle can be cosmetically made to look either like a Military Rifle OR what most people would call a Hunting Rifle (i.e. wood or faux wood stock).

    Now… on the other hand… the topic of restrictions to magazine size is completely on point and would be a much more productive discussion.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 0

  84. Anderson says:

    “I can change a magazine in seconds”

    YOU are not a 20-year-old with mental health issues (or so I assume).

    That’s great that gun experts can change magazines faster than they can fart.

    But I’m not concerned about you. I’m concerned about the amateurs that are actually killing us.

    And if I have to take away your “RIGHT” to a magazine that holds more than 6 rounds, then too bad for you, jacko.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 9 Thumb down 4

  85. matt says:

    @Brummagem Joe: Okay keep yourself enclosed in that secure ignorant bubble you’ve got going if you wish…

    England has had WAAAY more then 100 murders a year lol. Try closer to 1000. The USA actually had more then 9000 murders BTW. The majority of which occurred in areas with heavy gun control and bans.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 7

  86. David M says:

    @matt:

    Again, from earlier: “Really? Prove it. Support a magazine cap. Support something other than the status quo”

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 3

  87. matt says:

    @David M: Support something just to make you feel better? I’d rather support something that is effective and not a feel good measure which is all your magical cap would be.

    I support full background checks and age limits. I support the current laws and more as stated above.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 3

  88. matt says:

    f@Anderson: Liberty for you and screw the rest? How American of you..

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 5

  89. matt says:

    @mattb: It wouldn’t be very productive as grandfather laws would keep the current magazines in rotation for effectively an infinite amount of time. You’d never effectively eliminate standard capacity magazines.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 6

  90. anjin-san says:

    I have a relative who is a paranoid schizophenic. A few years ago, I found out he had a pistol among his possessions. Luckily I was able to confiscate it with a minimum of fuss. He has gone through periods where he wears a bulletproof vest and thinks Chinese secret agents are after him.

    The though of him getting his hands on a gun has caused a lot of sleepless nights.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 11 Thumb down 0

  91. Moosebreath says:

    @matt:

    “What do we do when there’s a massive freeway pile up? what do we do when a plane crashes killing all aboard? What do we do when something terrible happens?

    Do we jump out and go OMG BAN CARS PLANES PEOPLE!! No.”

    You’re right. We instead mandate seatbelts. And safety glass. And airbags. And other things to make vehicles less likely to kill. And what do you propose to make guns less likely to kill?

    Highly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 18 Thumb down 1

  92. mattb says:

    @Brummagem Joe:

    bollocks this isn’t about terminology ….there’s no comparison between my old man’s sporting rifle and what this guy is talking about

    Perhaps not you rifle — provided its a bolt action, pump action, or lever action model — but if, like many hunting rifles currently used today it’s a semi-automatic, then there probably is very little actual difference between the guns.

    And that’s the core issue. Currently only fully automatic weapons are banned in the US. The assault weapons ban of (1994) was an attempt to regulate semi-automatics that in application made very little sense.

    Beyond that, there are a slim number of options – either ban or heavily regulate the sale of all semi-automatic weapons OR restrict/ban the sale of certain accessories (i.e. extended magazines).

    But talking about things in terms of “hunting” or “combat” as if they mean anything is a bad idea.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 0

  93. grumpy realist says:

    @matt: That’s our question: what do you suggest to do?

    Unfortunately, the NRA doesn’t seem to have done anything that keeps these tragedies from happening. The only direction they seem to want is fewer and fewer restrictions. Open and concealed carry allowed everywhere. Guns allowed to people convicted of felonies. Guns allowed in churches, airports, theatres….

    When will you be satisfied? And what sort of society do you think you are creating?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 3

  94. Graham says:

    So what’s the point of that massive, Orwellian surveillance state we were reading about the other day if they can’t even prevent the horrific mass murder of children?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 1

  95. EddieInCA says:

    @matt:

    Full background checks and age limits? I support current laws and more, as stated above.

    What the “and more?” I, for one, would love to know.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

  96. Jack says:

    @Anderson: Good luck with that. You don’t have the power, wherewithall, or ability to take away my magazines. You don’t get to take away rights dipshit. First they said high capacity (over 30). Then they said over 10, now you are saying over 6. Where does it stop? It’s never good enough for you libtards.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 9

  97. stonetools says:

    you’re showing how completely and utterly clueless about guns you are

    There is no need to have any further expertise other than to know they’re killing machines. There’s certainly no need to wank on about 5.6mm that or 7.62 mm that. That’s just a bunch of big talk to intimidate people .

    Let’s talk about a society that has a lot more to worry about the odd bear or coyote on a farm somewhere- Israel. That’s as macho and gun-competent a society as you would want. The average Israel 18 year old could kick the average American gun nut’s a$$. Does that mean they have lax gun laws? Here, suck on some truth:

    TEL AVIV (JTA) — First-time visitors to Israel might be taken aback to see groups of armed teenagers walking through a city plaza on a weeknight, or surprised to walk into a public bathroom and see an M-16 laying across the sinks as a soldier washes his face.

    But guns are ubiquitous in Israel, where most 18-year-olds are drafted into the army after high school.

    However, once those soldiers finish their service two or three years later, they are subject to civilian gun control regulations that are much stricter than American laws.

    In fact, it’s pretty much impossible for civilians who live in Israel to acquire an arsenal of weaponry of the sort used by the alleged shooter in last week’s massacre in Aurora, Colo. James E. Holmes, who is accused of killing 12 people and wounding 58 in the Aurora movie theater, legally bought the firearms he used, according to reports, including a semiautomatic rifle, a semiautomatic pistol and a 12-gauge shotgun. Leading up to the shooting, Holmes had bought thousands of bullets online.

    In Israel, assault rifles are banned except for special circumstances, such as communal self-defense in areas deemed to be a security risk. And while political violence in Israel is all too common and gun violence is a growing problem, random shootings of strangers – like the Aurora massacre — are virtually unheard-of here.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 7 Thumb down 1

  98. mattb says:

    @matt:

    It wouldn’t be very productive as grandfather laws would keep the current magazines in rotation for effectively an infinite amount of time.

    Without a doubt, grandfathering makes any regulation difficult. The fact is that the genie is already out of the lamp on most of these issues (hence why it would be almost impossible to ban semi-automatic weapons in the US).

    That said, it’s still worth discussion. And, at least, in the case of extended magazines, I’m less swayed by arguments about the current number in circulation (especially when it comes to the really high capacity ones). That said, even if one were able to wave a magic wand and ban them ALL (i.e. no grandfathering at all), it would be years before the effects of such a move would be seen.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 1

  99. matt says:

    @anjin-san: I’m glad you were able to intervene in that situation before it became a large problem. I wish you luck with your relative. Something like that is a life long battle :(

    @Moosebreath: Yes AFTER the fact. What we’re getting here is BAN ALL GUNS OMG BAN THE GUNS GUN OWNERS ARE TEH WORST PEOPLE EVER WHO HATE THEIR CHILDREN AND LOVE THEIR GUNS!!1

    @mattb: Yeah I liked how the AWB took on such evil dangers as bayonets. Hell it inadvertently banned some hunting shotguns.

    @grumpy realist: Uhh you do realize that crime is down right? Down a LOT since the 90s for that matter. The status quo has made us safer then we’ve ever been as a country.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 5

  100. Lynda says:

    @matt:
    I have been vividly reliving all my emotions following the Dunblane school massacre of 1996.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dunblane_school_massacre

    The Hungerford massacre of 1987 brought in laws banning semi-automatic rifles in the UK. Dunblane brought in restrictions on handguns. It has not stopped all mass shootings, for example the Cumbria shootings of 2010, but gun deaths in the UK are now at a rate of 0.22 out of 100,000 versus 9 for the US
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_countries_by_firearm-related_death_rate

    The overall homicide rate is 4.2 in the US compared to 1.2 in the UK.

    You think culture is solely responsible for the difference between the two?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 8 Thumb down 2

  101. matt says:

    @stonetools: Okay nutcase okay..You keep beating that straw.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 4

  102. Bernieyeball says:

    @Jack: Obviously what’s good enough for Jack are the bullet riddled corpses of innocent children.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 4

  103. matt says:

    @Lynda: I clearly don’t but I guess a nuanced view of what causes violence is too difficult of a concept for people to understand here..

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 7

  104. Rafer Janders says:

    @matt:

    England has about 1/3rd the crime we do but there’s far more going on then just laws. There’s a different culture there where violence isn’t worshiped like it is here.

    And one reason violence is worshipped here is because of gun fetishists such as you.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 7 Thumb down 3

  105. mattb says:

    @EddieInCA:

    What the “and more?” I, for one, would love to know.

    When this subject came up in response to the last mass shooting, I seem to remember that Matt agreed with stricter conceal carry certification than you find in most Southern States. And I also believe that he supported more regulation of sales at gun shows (though I might be wrong about that).

    The thing is that most gun owners I know* have no objection to smart regulation. Likewise they don’t see guns as panaceas. And most actively train with their weapons.

    What many of them oppose are “feel good” laws that have very little noticeable effect on these sorts of tragedies and tend to be overly onerous on gun owners.

    * – again, for the record, I do not own a gun.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 8 Thumb down 0

  106. matt says:

    @Rafer Janders: Beat that straw buddy keep beating that straw. It’s hilarious how you people cannot realize that you sound just like right wingers when it comes to abortion. Anyone that is prochoice is a BABY KILLER WHO LOVES KILLING BABIES MORE THEN BABIES!!!.. Just like now anyone who enjoys shooting or has had to use a gun in self defense is suddenly someone that LOVES THEIR GUN MORE THEN THEIR CHILDREN AND WANT CHILDREN TO DIE BECAUSE WE ARE GUN FETISHESSSSS.,.

    Get a grip son.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 6

  107. Jack says:

    @Bernieyeball: No, unlike the left I don’t revel in every mass shooting in an effort to push an agenda.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 7

  108. @matt:
    Protection against dangerous animals – the four-legged kind – is exactly why I decided to carry. I endured one attack, unarmed and thankfully uninjured, but by golly, I won’t be defenseless again. See here.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 2

  109. matt says:

    @mattb: You are correct I supported all those and more. I applaud your patient attempts to deal with these irrational arguments.

    I don’t own a huge cache of weaponry or anything. I just have a couple guns that I enjoy hunting and shooting with. Fortunately I haven’t had a real life or death struggle for some time now. I practice regularly because I need to stay on top of my shooting and safety procedures.

    BTW the Ruger LC9 is an excellent compact handgun for self defense. A solid round and a very reliable action with nice built in safety features such as the built in trigger lock.

    I had a pack of dogs attempt to attack me on the farm many decades ago. Fortunately I had my rifle and after dropping a couple of them the rest ran.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 3

  110. Rafer Janders says:

    @Jack:

    The Oregon guy stole his weapon, how in the hell do you prevent that?

    Don’t have weapons available for him to steal. I could try to steal a gun in Japan, but would be unlikely to succeed, because there aren’t a lot of guns lying around in private homes.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 7 Thumb down 3

  111. PJ says:

    @matt:

    England has had WAAAY more then 100 murders a year lol. Try closer to 1000. The USA actually had more then 9000 murders BTW. The majority of which occurred in areas with heavy gun control and bans.

    US homicide rates. 14,612 in 2011.

    England+Wales homicide rates. It was about 550 in 2011/12.

    About the 9000 and 1000 numbers. The England+Wales homicide rate has been above 1000 once, the US homicide rate was at 9000 back in the 1960’s…

    England and Wales has a population of 56 million, if they had the same homicide rate as the US, they would have about 2600 murders each year…

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 10 Thumb down 0

  112. Bernieyeball says:

    Jack Sez: “No, unlike the left I don’t revel in every mass shooting in an effort to push an agenda.”

    Like you don’t have an agenda…

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 3

  113. Moosebreath says:

    @matt:

    “Yes AFTER the fact.”

    And we are after the fact here as well. Your point being?

    “What we’re getting here is BAN ALL GUNS OMG BAN THE GUNS GUN OWNERS ARE TEH WORST PEOPLE EVER WHO HATE THEIR CHILDREN AND LOVE THEIR GUNS!!”

    From some, not all. You are dismissing out of hand what is being said by the ones who want something far less than that as well (such as Anderson and Brummagem Joe).

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 1

  114. mattb says:

    @matt:

    Yeah I liked how the AWB took on such evil dangers as bayonets.

    That’s not an argument that I’m particularly sympathetic to. I have no issue with the idea of using guns (both hand and rifle) in self defense or home defense. I see little rational at all for civilian use of a bayonet.

    And I say this both as (a) someone who regularly trains with edged weapons (and never wants to use one) and (b) someone whose father-in-law served in Patton’s army in WWII and repeatedly told me that “the worst order you were given before entering combat was ‘afix bayonets’.”

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

  115. Rafer Janders says:

    @matt:

    What do we do when there’s a massive freeway pile up? what do we do when a plane crashes killing all aboard? What do we do when something terrible happens?

    Of course, unlike guns, cars and planes are necessary for a functioning modern industrial society, and are able to be used as intended without killing people.

    Do we jump out and go OMG BAN CARS PLANES PEOPLE!! No. I’d prefer we wait for all the facts to come in and then consider what could of been done to prevent or decrease this tragedy. The fact of the matter is that terrible things will happen.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 3

  116. matt says:

    @Moosebreath: Barely after the fact with almost no real facts having been revealed people are just jumping to conclusions right now.

    @mattb: I was being dismissive of the “effectiveness” of the AWB by clearly stating how one aspect of it effected something that is clearly NOT a problem. BTW people use bayonets for hunting. Either as a primary method of kill or as a final blow to hasten the animals demise.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 2

  117. Jack says:

    After VA Tech everyone was screaming about closing the “gun show loophole”, which had nothing to do with Va Tech killings. After Aurora they screamed to the roof about high capacity drum magazines, yet the killer did most of the damage with a pump shotgun. After Oregon it was AR-15s, yet a rifle capable of shooting hundred of rounds per minute, only killed two before the killer turned the gun on himself. Too often people want to blame the tool. If someone is crazy and wants to kill enough people he will figure out a way to do it. As I recall, the Colorado guy had bombs in his apartment.

    Stop blaming the tool and figure out how to catch these people before they go off the deep end.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 6

  118. legion says:

    @matt: Being capable of fully-automatic fire is not the only definition of a combat weapon. You don’t need a 30-round clip, or a 100-round drum for any non-combat purpose, and your insistence on conflating a AR-15 with the sort of weapon that might be useful in a either rural or home-defense situation belies _your_ inability to grasp the concept that gun _control_ is not the same as the _outright banning_ of weapons or weapon types.

    As for cosmetic modifications, that’s simply ludicrous. Making something _look_ like an AK-47 (or whatever) does not make it _perform_ like one.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 2

  119. matt says:

    @Rafer Janders: Guns are required in large areas of this country and your complete ignorance of that fact shows where your perspective was formed.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 8

  120. David M says:

    @matt:

    You are correct I supported [stricter conceal carry certification than you find in most Southern States. And I also believe that he supported more regulation of sales at gun shows] and more.

    And yet you appear to be taking the opposite side now, like the GOP nutballs who object to any tax increase because it will invariably lead to everyone paying a rate of 95%.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 4

  121. Rafer Janders says:

    Damn, blockquote fail:

    Do we jump out and go OMG BAN CARS PLANES PEOPLE!! No.

    Well, we might, if people started routinely using cars and planes to commit mass murders. Notice, for example, how we beefed up airport security after the September 11th attacks.

    I’d prefer we wait for all the facts to come in and then consider what could of been done to prevent or decrease this tragedy.

    After several hundred of these mass shootings, how many more facts do we need?

    The fact of the matter is that terrible things will happen.

    Oh well then! That’s just life, I suppose! Sorry about that, parents of murdered little children!

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 7 Thumb down 3

  122. Rafer Janders says:

    @matt:

    Guns are required in large areas of this country

    What, in case the Apache attack again? To protect against a Comanche raid?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 9 Thumb down 3

  123. matt says:

    @legion: You don’t need a car either because your feet work just fine. You don’t need a lot of things in life..

    @mattb: Yeah bayoneting has to be one of the worst ways to kill someone. I was greatly surprised to find that when I moved down here that far more people are murdered by knives then guns despite guns being easy to buy.

    @Rafer Janders: I see so you obviously are not interested in having a rational discussion. Please head to reddit or 4chan. I promise you that you can get your troll on a lot more effectively there.

    @David MThat’s all you as I’ve been consistent this entire thread with my previous statements.

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  124. Jack says:

    @Bernieyeball: My agenda is to protect rights. Just like every time someone wants someone banned from TV(Bob Costas) or radio (Imus) just because they say stupid things I stand up for the 1st amendment. Just like everytime I hear about warrentless searches of people or property I stand up for the forth amendment. And so on. I’m an equal opportunity offender when it comes to standing up for rights. All of them.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 6

  125. David M says:

    @Jack:

    …figure out how to catch these people before they go off the deep end.

    Um, really? I’m pretty sure the intrusive state powers required for that would be worse than whatever minor gun control laws most people here are supporting

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 7 Thumb down 1

  126. mattb says:

    @Moosebreath:

    “What we’re getting here is BAN ALL GUNS OMG BAN THE GUNS GUN OWNERS ARE TEH WORST PEOPLE EVER WHO HATE THEIR CHILDREN AND LOVE THEIR GUNS!!”

    From some, not all. You are dismissing out of hand what is being said by the ones who want something far less than that as well (such as Anderson and Brummagem Joe).

    Again, in Matt’s defense, it’s not so much that he’s dismissing what Anderson and Joe are saying out of hand, as he’s tracing their arguments to an (acutal) logical conclusion. That’s why using actual terminology is so important.

    For the record, part of the reason that I’ve educated myself about guns is so I can actually intelligently argue for regulation (not to mention understand the counter arguments).

    The fact is that, whether they realize it or not, Anderson, Joe and others are arguing for a ban on all semi-automatic weapons (pistol and rifle). Not only would that be rather difficult, it has a lot of implications. Now to @Lynda’s point, it can be done. The UK did it, for example. But understand that we’re not the UK — there are far more semiautomatic weapons in the US than there ever were in the UK (we’ve always been more of a gun culture) and Law Enforcement in the UK has, generally speaking, far more powers than in the US.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 7 Thumb down 0

  127. Moosebreath says:

    @matt:

    ” Barely after the fact with almost no real facts having been revealed people are just jumping to conclusions right now.”

    And we are days after the shooting at the Oregon Mall. And months after the one in the Colorado theater. And more than a decade after Columbine. And?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 9 Thumb down 1

  128. Rob in CT says:

    F*()@&#$R%!

    Awful beyond belief.

    I grew up not far from Newtown.

    I see there are over 100 comments, so I suspect there’s been the usual squabbling over gun control.

    Whatever. Violence is the problem. Guns are tools (admittedly, they’re quite effective tools). Unless you can, once the facts are actually in, point to a specific flaw in our laws that allowed this unhinged person (angry young man, apparently) to obtain weapons he otherwise would have been prevented from obtaining, you’re not actually adding anything. For all we know, the legal remedies people like to bring up would have done precisely nothing to stop this. That’s setting aside the constitutional issues, which, of course, you can’t actually just set aside.

    F*cking awful. I confess to being teary-eyed in my car as I drove around today running errands and listening to the radio coverage.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 8 Thumb down 0

  129. Rafer Janders says:

    @matt:

    The USA actually had more then 9000 murders BTW. The majority of which occurred in areas with heavy gun control and bans.

    Which seems to me to argue for national-level gun control. After all, NYC’s gun control can never be that effective given that I can just drive down to Virginia, buy a gun, and be back in the city the same day.

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  130. Sejanus says:

    @Bernieyeball: ” I suspect Citizen Floreck and his ilk will blame the young, innocent victims of this bloodbath for not being armed as they have in the past.”

    At least he’s not one of those wingnuts who blame school shootings on the teaching of evolution.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 1

  131. matt says:

    @Rob in CT: Amen

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 1

  132. The Myth of the Armed Citizen

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  133. stonetools says:

    @matt:

    As for Japan has an overall low murder rate due to a variety of reasons. But you are correct in that the vast majority of Murders committed in Japan do not involve a gun.

    So gun control DOES work, since the percentage of gun related murders committed in Japan is , as you admit, tiny.
    Since you wouldn’t ( or couldn’t ) present evidence that handgun control laws have no effect on the firearm-related gun murder , I used the Google ( you may have heard of it?) and in two seconds discovered a nice chart depicting a list of countries by firearm-related death rate. Guess what? It turns out that ALL the countries with effective handgun control laws have a much lower rate of firearm related death than the USA.You mentioned Australia? 2.94 murders per 100,0000 contrasted with 9.00. UK? 0.22. Germany? 1.03. Canada ( right next door?) 4.78

    All of those countries do much better than the USA. Based on that chart and arithmetic, YOU.ARE. WRONG.

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  134. Bernieyeball says:

    @Jack: So it’s OK for citizens to have an agenda? Or just the one you approve of?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 2

  135. Brummagem Joe says:

    @Rafer Janders:

    Guns are required in large areas of this country
    What, in case the Apache attack again? To protect against a Comanche raid?

    Unfortunately, the matts of this world are beyond parody. Normally I favor satire as a response to total inanity but in circumstances like this it doesn’t begin to reach these people’s total absence of the most basic commonsense or imperviousness to human tragedy.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 8 Thumb down 5

  136. Rafer Janders says:

    @Jack:

    If someone is crazy and wants to kill enough people he will figure out a way to do it.

    Having worked with a lot of crazy people….no, they won’t. You know why? They’re crazy. They are not very effective planners and aren’t that good at coming up with complicated work-arounds.

    Give them a gun within easy reach, though, and hey. They’re off to the races.

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  137. C. Clavin says:

    If only the kids at that school had been armed…they could have defended themselves.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 0

  138. Brummagem Joe says:

    @mattb:

    The fact is that, whether they realize it or not, Anderson, Joe and others are arguing for a ban on all semi-automatic weapons (pistol and rifle).

    I’m not sure whose the more fatuouis……you or the other matt……I’m certainly not calling for an absolute ban on all semi automatic weapons…….I suggest you don’t take up mind reading as a career.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 5

  139. mattb says:

    @matt:

    BTW people use bayonets for hunting. Either as a primary method of kill or as a final blow to hasten the animals demise.

    I’ve heard that before and I’m unswayed. Those people can buy a hunting knife (or if they’re so close to the animal that they can bayonet it, they should carry a sword/machete).

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

  140. Brummagem Joe says:

    @Rafer Janders:

    Give them a gun within easy reach, though, and hey. They’re off to the races.

    What’s the purpose of a Glock semi automatic handgun that can fire off five shots in as many seconds. Opening bottles of wine? Peeling potatoes? Cutting wood? Painting the wall? Killing people?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 10 Thumb down 1

  141. Jack says:

    @Rafer Janders: Like the Colorado shooter who also had bombs in his apartment? Crazy doesn’t mean ignorant.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 5

  142. mattb says:

    @legion:

    Being capable of fully-automatic fire is not the only definition of a combat weapon.

    No… it really is the key definition of a combat weapon.

    You don’t need a 30-round clip, or a 100-round drum for any non-combat purpose

    The counter argument is that 30 round magazines (please don’t use the term clip… they are not the same thing) are useful at the range. It’s not one that I’m partcularly sympathetic to. But the point is, there’s no reason to bring “combat” into this discussion. Simply argue for restricting magazine size.

    your insistence on conflating a AR-15 with the sort of weapon that might be useful in a either rural or home-defense situation belies _your_ inability to grasp the concept that gun _control_ is not the same as the _outright banning_ of weapons or weapon types.

    Actually there are a number of reasons that an AR-15 (or more to the point a semi-automatic weapon) is useful in bot rural and home-defense situations. And there is a real argument to be made that because there is no manual chambering, and because it can fire rounds that tumble and can stop very quickly (as opposed to going through walls), a semi-automatic rifle is a far more safe and reliable home self defense weapon than a manual revolver (yeah… that blew my mind too when I realized it).

    As for cosmetic modifications, that’s simply ludicrous. Making something _look_ like an AK-47 (or whatever) does not make it _perform_ like one.

    But what do you mean by “perform like one?” Because if we’re talking about an AK-47, the key feature is that it’s fully automatic — i.e. keeps firing as long as the trigger is depressed. That is illegal in the US. Has been for years. And that’s what makes the AK-47 an assault rifle and a combat weapon.

    So what do you want to ban or strongly regulate about currently legal guns in the US?

    Look, I hate to say it, but Matt actually grasps this stuff far more than you do legion.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 1

  143. Graham says:

    @Rafer Janders: It’s against federal law to buy a gun outside of your state of residence. The gun would have to be transferred from the seller to a federally licensed dealer in your state of residence, and you would have to complete a standard federal background check form before the dealer could legally transfer the gun to you.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 1

  144. C. Clavin says:

    EddieInCA @ 13:33 wins the thread…

    Kids… Man.

    Kids…

    Fucking kids…

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

  145. matt says:

    @Rafer Janders: I think TImothy Mcveigh and about anyone who has killed someone would like to have a talk with you. History is full of crazy people pulling off crazy stuff. I would argue that someone would have to be crazy in order to go through with the cold blooded murder of a fellow human.

    My current hunting rifle when I got it.
    http://oi48.tinypic.com/zl8yn8.jpg

    The same rifle after I did completely legal work on it.
    http://oi48.tinypic.com/v2sgtl.jpg

    @Brummagem Joe: I’ve already related to you a story about when I was attacked by dogs on my farm. I have a whole gaggle of stories involving four legged animals trying to kill me or my livestock.

    My latest story involves the last time I went hog hunting. The hogs in Texas have been getting more and more aggressive as of late. So much so that combined with their numbers Texas has been forced into offering a bounty of 2 dollars a hog tail (pays for the bullet and the meat is usually good). Well I was out in a field which didn’t have much in the way of cover. Despite this we were able to close within 50 yards of a group of hogs at a feeder. After our first shots the hogs surprised us by actually charging us instead of running away. Having a group of +200 lb pissed off hogs charging you is a very scary and DANGEROUS thing. I had no tree that I could climb nearby so I had to stand my ground. Fortunately I was using my 30 round magazines that hunt and so I was able to drop several of the buggers before they got within 25 yards of me at which point they decided to make a break for it. I admit that in my pumped up state several of my shots were less then ideal resulting in the need for multiple hits per hog.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 4

  146. Rafer Janders says:

    @matt:

    You don’t need a car either because your feet work just fine. You don’t need a lot of things in life..

    You do actually need a car in our modern industrial society to do things like, oh, get to work, get to school, go to dinner, go shopping etc. You need a car to live in society on a day to day basis. You don’t, however, need a gun to do any of those things.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 3

  147. Andre Kenji says:

    I might be wrong, but the state of Mental Care in the US is probably a bigger issue than guns. You know, National healthcare systems are perfect to deal with this people.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 10 Thumb down 0

  148. Rob in CT says:

    Ok, having read the thread… sigh.

    The two matts are not monsters. They’re actually trying to have a sane conversation about reasonable regulation, and they’re being treated like the absolutists we’ve all met before on the web (e.g. That Guy who likes to assert that if everyone was armed, things like this wouldn’t happen).

    Emotions run high when things like this happen. I’m upset too. But damn, fellas. I’m just shaking my head.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 11 Thumb down 0

  149. matt says:

    @mattb: Ever been bit while trying to slit the throat of a struggling animal? I guess I could just put more lead into the animal and ruin more meat :(

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 2

  150. Jack says:

    @Graham: It’s illegal to buy a hadgun, but yes you are correct.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

  151. Rafer Janders says:

    @Jack:

    Like the Colorado shooter who also had bombs in his apartment?

    Compare the population of people who are able to build a bomb against the population of people who are able to place their finger on a trigger and pull. I believe the second is larger, but I could be wrong.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 7 Thumb down 0

  152. matt says:

    @Rafer Janders: No you don’t You can walk

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 7

  153. mattb says:

    @Brummagem Joe:

    @MattB: The fact is that, whether they realize it or not, Anderson, Joe and others are arguing for a ban on all semi-automatic weapons (pistol and rifle).

    I’m not sure whose the more fatuouis……you or the other matt……I’m certainly not calling for an absolute ban on all semi automatic weapons…….I suggest you don’t take up mind reading as a career.

    Then what are you arguing for?

    And, given the fact that you are making arguments like the one below, I have a hard time seeing how my assumption was particularly off base…
    @Brummagem Joe:

    What’s the purpose of a Glock semi automatic handgun that can fire off five shots in as many seconds. Opening bottles of wine? Peeling potatoes? Cutting wood? Painting the wall? Killing people?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

  154. matt says:

    @Andre Kenji: You’re right but that would be SOCIALISM or something evil… sigh..

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 1

  155. C. Clavin says:

    Waiting to find out why the shooter was so angry that he thought it was necessary to kill 18 children to make his point.
    I’m sure he had a good reason.

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  156. Jack says:

    @Brummagem Joe: Again, I own sever handguns and none of them have killed anyone. You are projecting again.

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  157. rudderpedals says:

    @Jack: If you view it as prefacatory then you’ve reduced the plain language to mere precatory and might as well ignore it because it isn’t given any effect. You’ll be with in good company with Justices going along for the ride with you when you don’t have a problem simply ignoring inconvenient language.

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  158. Brummagem Joe says:

    @matt:

    @mattb: Ever been bit while trying to slit the throat of a struggling animal? I guess I could just put more lead into the animal and ruin more meat :(

    We have 20 children and 6 adults dead in the latest mass shooting and these mental giants are discussing the relative merit of how best to kill animals……as I said they are beyond parody.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 10 Thumb down 4

  159. Brummagem Joe says:

    @Jack:

    So what is their purpose …..answer the question

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  160. matt says:

    @Brummagem Joe: Yeah rational discussions about reasonable limits is sooo stupid…

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 1

  161. David M says:

    @Rob in CT:

    They’re actually trying to have a sane conversation about reasonable regulation

    But matt isn’t coming close to making that clear.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 4

  162. David M says:

    And by the way, show of hands of people who actually want to ban all semi-automatic weapons? Bueller? Bueller?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 2

  163. Brummagem Joe says:

    @mattb:

    And, given the fact that you are making arguments like the one below, I have a hard time seeing how my assumption was particularly off base…

    One addresses a simple issue of utility while the other is just your wild assertion…….you obviously can’t tell the difference

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 3

  164. Jack says:

    @Rafer Janders: Anyone who can read a book or use the internet can build a bomb. It’s not that difficult. So are all crazy people incapable of reading or using the internet?

    What I’m saying is there were indicators of crazy for the shooters in VA Tech, Arizona, Colorado, and even this one. No sane person just decides to kill a parent and then shoot a room full of children. Someone somewhere new this guy was a few cards short of a deck and didn’t do their job. Hell, the police pulled over the KC lineback hours before he killed his girlfriend and himself for possible DUI and let him go.

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  165. Midwestern Dad says:

    I think that when you hear of an event like this, one wants to do something to solve it and to blame someone or something. It is very sad but saying that our thoughts and prayers are with you is inadequate. Given recent events in Arizona, Colorado, Conn, etc., the status quo is not working to protect society. This feels like an Emmitt Till moment. If one can agree that banning all guns is unlikely to occur and that the present status of gun control is inadequate to address these types of issues, it seems to me that more significant gun control that is reasonable is the answer. The rub is where is that line. The government in Washington does not seem up to cooperation but I suggest allowing persons who want to hunt or protect themselves to have guns for such use on one hand but making it more difficult for mentally ill people to easily get guns on the other hand. Outlawing open gun sales at gun shows and requiring investigation prior to sale to prevent gun ownership by felons or mentally ill individuals seems like a good place to start.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 8 Thumb down 0

  166. matt says:

    @David MThere’s plenty in this thread. Hell just read the first 30 posts and you’ll see several. You have no excuse for such a willfully ignorant statement.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 1

  167. Jack says:

    @rudderpedals: I’m not ignoring it. It is what it is, an introductory clause giving an example of why the people’s right to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed. It’s an incomplete sentence without the independent clause and the rights are clearly those of the people.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 1

  168. matt says:

    @Midwestern Dad: I’m not aware of any place that doesn’t use the NICS. If such a place exists then they certainly should change the laws there to require a NICS check.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 1

  169. mattb says:

    @Brummagem Joe:
    Aas happens in these sorts of discussions, Matt was following up on a discussion. Frankly most of this thread has had nothing directly to do with the suffering that took place in CT.

    If people had heeded your plea in the first post, maybe we’d be discussing that. But the fact is that almost immediately, this became a discussion of gun control. In fact, within 10 posts you contributed this:

    Looks like 27 dead….18 children…..the massace of the innocents……another victory for the NRA

    I’m not an NRA supporter. Hell, I don’t own a gun. And generally speaking, I support far tougher gun regulation. But I expect that regulation to be rooted in reality.

    As far as Matt’s comment about killing animals, it was in response to the discussion we were having a bayonets. To the degree that bayonets were actually caught up in the entire Assault Weapons ban, it was perfectly on topic.

    So no offense, but stop being a holier than thou a-hole. You and others wanted a discussion on gun control, this is part of it. Or are counter opinions not welcome?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 0

  170. David M says:

    @matt:

    There’s plenty in this thread. Hell just read the first 30 posts and you’ll see several.

    Quote them or STFU. I read the first 30 comments, and saw exactly zero. You have no excuse for such a willfully ignorant statement.

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  171. mattb says:

    @Brummagem Joe:

    One addresses a simple issue of utility while the other is just your wild assertion…….you obviously can’t tell the difference

    Fine Joe. I’ll accept that.

    So again, let me ask, what are your arguing for? I think we all can agree that continued regulation of guns is a good thing. And that it could be strengthened. The question is how?

    So far, the only thing that’s close to a proposal I’ve seen on this thread is restricting the capacity of magazines (something I support).

    What else?

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  172. Brummagem Joe says:

    I’m going to say it again because it bears repeating. We have an estimated 6 million people (about 2% of the population) with serious mental health problems. This is conservative when one considers the number on mind altering drugs of one sort or another. There are then about 350 million guns in circulation and they can be obtained easier than candy. Then most states allow the concealed carrying of weapons. Thus it is a statistical certainty that mass shootings will occur at regular intervals…..there have been thousands of them during the last seven years…..Brady keeps a record. This is just the latest. This is not emotion it’s math. The status quo means the carnage continues or you can get serious about regulating firearms which won’t entirely eliminate the problem but it would make a serious ding in it. I’m betting the carnage continues.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 1

  173. mattb says:

    @David M:

    And by the way, show of hands of people who actually want to ban all semi-automatic weapons? Bueller? Bueller?

    Ok… so it sounds like no one here wants to ban semi-automatic weapons. Great… Then what practical regulations are people interested in?

    Because talking about wanting to get rid of “Combat weapons” for example doesn’t frickin mean anything! As I said before, so far the only remotely actionable proposals we’ve seen on this thread were:
    (1) Restricting magazine size
    (2) Banning bayonet mounts (with some justification for keeping them)

    What do other people have?

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  174. matt says:

    @David M: Trollololololol

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 2

  175. Xenos says:

    Hmmm, if it does not help to regulate guns, couldn’t there be something that makes sure mental health therapies are universally available? Even if it is a bit expensive, is it not better than limiting constitutional freedoms?

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  176. Rafer Janders says:

    @Jack:

    Anyone who can read a book or use the internet can build a bomb. It’s not that difficult.

    Yes, it is, because you actually have to BUILD IT. You have to find instructions, learn how to do it, go to the store, buy the ingredients, build the bomb while not blowing yourself up in the process, and then successfully and secretly transport the bomb. But you don’t have to buildy your own gun — you can pull it out of the holster and use it within seconds.

    You know how we know it’s actually fairly difficult and involved to build a bomb versus using a gun? People use guns all the time, every day, but bombs are very rare.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 1

  177. Brummagem Joe says:

    @mattb:

    So again, let me ask, what are your arguing for? I think we all can agree that continued regulation of guns is a good thing. And that it could be strengthened. The question is how?

    The Canadian system of regulation would be a good start.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 1

  178. matt says:

    @Xenos: One of the reasons I support a public option with strong treatment options. If people are able to get the treatment they need for mental health problems then there will be fewer tragedies overall. Also we as a country need to get past the stigmas associated with mental health issues. A more honest and open discussion about mental health problems would be a nice start.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 8 Thumb down 0

  179. stonetools says:

    @Rob in CT:

    Whatever. Violence is the problem. Guns are tools (admittedly, they’re quite effective tools). Unless you can, once the facts are actually in, point to a specific flaw in our laws that allowed this unhinged person (angry young man, apparently) to obtain weapons he otherwise would have been prevented from obtaining, you’re not actually adding anything. For all we know, the legal remedies people like to bring up would have done precisely nothing to stop this. That’s setting aside the constitutional issues, which, of course, you can’t actually just set aside.

    Well, the thing is, its actually pretty easy to point to flaws in the law that allow unhinged persons easy access to semi-automatic weapons. Have you ever heard of these kinds of mass shootings happening in Switzerland-a country that actually has a well regulated militia, where every able boddied man must serve in the military and possess and maintain a military grade rifle? That’s because they don’t happen there, or in just about every other country with effective gun control laNow is it because the Swiss -or Israelis or Australians or British- are so smart? Nope, its because they have better LAWS than us. Switzerland:

    To carry firearms in public or outdoors (and for an individual who is a member of the militia carrying a firearm other than his Army-issue personal weapons off-duty), a person must have a Waffentragschein (gun carrying permit), which in most cases is issued only to private citizens working in occupations such as security.

    It is, however, quite common to see a person serving military service to be en route with his rifle.
    Conditions for getting a Carrying Permit

    There are three conditions:

    fulfilling the conditions for buying a permit (see section below)
    stating plausibly the need to carry firearms to protect oneself, other people, or real property from a specified danger
    passing an examination proving both weapon handling skills and knowledge regarding lawful use of the weapon

    The carrying permit remains valid for a term of five years (unless otherwise surrendered or revoked), and applies only to the type of firearm for which the permit was issued. Additional constraints may be invoked to modify any specific permit.

    To buy a gun:

    To purchase a firearm in a commercial shop, one needs to have a Waffenerwerbsschein (weapon acquisition permit). A permit allows the purchase of three firearms. Everyone over the age of 18 who is not psychiatrically disabled (such as having had a history of endangering his own life or the lives of others) or identified as posing security problems, and who has a clean criminal record (requires a Criminal Records Bureau check) can request such a permit.[citation needed]

    To buy a gun from an individual, no permit is needed, but the seller is expected to establish a reasonable certainty that the purchaser will fulfill the above-mentioned conditions (usually done through a Criminal Records Bureau check). The participants in such a transaction are required to prepare a written contract detailing the identities of both vendor and purchaser, the weapon’s type, manufacturer, and serial number. The law requires the written contract to be kept for ten years by the buyer and seller. The seller is also required to see some official ID from the purchaser,

    These requirements all seem common-nonsensical to me but NRA resists such requirements tooth and nail.
    Here in the USA, you can go to any gun show and pretty much buy any kind and number of semi-automatic weapon you want and as much ammunition as you want, any kind of body armor you want , often with zero background checks.
    You can buy guns at commercial shops with no background checks, except a cursory criminal record check. You can be barking mad and unless you have committed a crime , you can buy any kind and number of semi-automatic weapon you like most places, without going through any kind of testing or weapons training at all. You can order any amount of ammunition for those weapons you like, OVER THE INTERNET.
    Not surprisingly, crazy people find it easy to get guns and slaughter people. Well, it doesn’t have to be that way.

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  180. mattb says:

    @Brummagem Joe:
    You’ve just said a whole lot of nothing there Joe. You essentially just punched out of the conersation with “current situation is bad, but I got nothing….” No offense, but I find that a little less than useful.

    The thing is CCW isn’t a problem. It’s the lax standard that some states have for getting a CCW permit (looking at you Florida). Likewise, I totally agree about issues with mental health and guns. The question is how might that even begin to be addressed (especially in a post HIPPA world).

    Much of this (like electoral problems) also comes down to our Federalist system. That’s something I have no idea about how to rectify. But it’s going to be a continued problem…

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  181. Mikey says:

    @Brummagem Joe:

    Thus it is a statistical certainty that mass shootings will occur at regular intervals…..there have been thousands of them during the last seven years…..Brady keeps a record.

    What does Brady consider a “mass shooting?” Because Mother Jones–hardly a pro-gun, conservative outfit–puts the number at 61 in the last 30 years.

    A Guide to Mass Shootings in America | Mother Jones

    Something stuck out to me: six of those (seven, if you include today’s) occurred in 2012 alone. 11% of the mass shootings in 3% of the time span (again, including today’s).

    And what’s more, as the overall incidence of violence in America has dropped, these incidents have become more common.

    What the hell is going on?

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  182. matt says:

    @stonetools: In all fairness Switzerland has a population of 7 million and is about the size of a small state. The culture there is entirely different from what you see in most of the USA.

    I do think that you are on to something with the well regulated militias and such. If more people received proper training in the safe handling of firearms there would be far fewer accidents.

    Here in the USA, you can go to any gun show and pretty much buy any kind and number of semi-automatic weapon you want and as much ammunition as you want, any kind of body armor you want , often with zero background checks.

    Not always as it depends on if you’re buying from a dealer or an individual. Individuals are not required to do NICS checks on potential sales while dealers are required by law to do at least a NICS if not more (depends on the state).

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  183. matt says:

    @Mikey: Brady probably considers anything involving more then one death or injury to be a mass shooting. That’s probably where Joe is coming from.

    I’m guessing the recent spat of insanity has to do with all the end times and crazy talk that’s been going on about this year in particular. EVerything from the unhinged right’s crazy screeds about Obama is going to destroy this country to the crazy mayan crap..

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  184. mattb says:

    @Brummagem Joe:

    The Canadian system of regulation would be a good start.

    Agreed.

    But that, and other folk’s invocations of the British, Switzerland, Japan, all have to come crashing into the problem of federalism. So long as individual state governments (not to mention localities) have primary control over licensing and regulation then implementing any of those systems would be difficult at best.

    Ironically this is the same problem with election reform.

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  185. David M says:

    @matt:

    Individuals are not required to do NICS checks

    How about fixing that?

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  186. matt says:

    @David M: Quote me in full? Quote my earlier statement about needing to expand the NICS…You still going to claim micheal and crew don’t want guns banned?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 1

  187. mattb says:

    @David M:

    How about fixing [Individuals are not required to do NICS checks]?

    That’s an idea worth discussion. The issue is how to do that. Do we give every citizen access to the NICS database? And would that compromise people’s right to privacy?

    Or do we limit or eliminate person to person gun sales and require a third (professional) party to be involved?

    BTW — for the record, I’m asking these questions not to shoot down the idea, but to promote discussion of it and wrestling with these sorts of issues. To me, that’s far more productive than simply venting on how guns (or gun regulation) are bad.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 0

  188. David M says:

    @matt:

    You still going to claim micheal and crew don’t want guns banned?

    Um, the following quote by michael reynolds, explicitly rules out having the government ban guns. Pressure from society is not a ban. You are and the NRA are alone in your paranoia about banning all guns.

    This is a hearts and minds campaign. It needs to be as unacceptable to own a gun as it is to run a dog fight. Society has to become intolerant of these people. They have to be made to feel outside the pale. We should not let our children visit homes where we know there are guns. When we hear people say they own a gun the reaction should be shock. Right now a cigarette smoker feels more ostracized than a gun owner, we need that to change.

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  189. Mikey says:

    @mattb: I’ve maintained for a long time that the NICS should be available and required for all sales–gun shows, pawn shops (although they’re probably all federally licensed already), selling Grandpa’s old WW2 rifle in your living room, it doesn’t matter, NICS gets used.

    I think the privacy concern is valid but can be addressed by simply returning a green check mark or a big red X rather than any specifics on the prospective buyer.

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  190. stonetools says:

    @mattb:

    What do other people have?

    This isn’t rocket science. Most other industrialized countries have figured it out, including countries where citizens have lots of guns. I gave Switzerland above,. There’s plenty more.
    Simply having someone submit to a medical examination and undergo basic weapons safety raining before buying a gun would stop most of the crazies from getting guns .
    Mandating background checks everywhere, including at gun shows.
    Making it illegal to buy ammunition over the Internet.
    Having three people who know you well vouch for you in order for you to buy a weapon (Most lone whackos would fail this: most law abiding citizens will pass this easily)

    Lots of reasonable ideas out there. Yet the NRA can be counted to oppose each and every one of these.

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  191. Moosebreath says:

    @mattb:

    “BTW — for the record, I’m asking these questions not to shoot down the idea, but to promote discussion of it and wrestling with these sorts of issues. To me, that’s far more productive than simply venting on how guns (or gun regulation) are bad.”

    I tend to agree, which is why I was pushing matt to actually suggest something additional he is willing to accept. And I’d vote for “Or do we limit or eliminate person to person gun sales and require a third (professional) party to be involved?”. The privacy issue is pretty strong for me. And I’d want the police to have the ability to trace a gun used in a crime, which this would enable doing.

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  192. Lit3Bolt says:

    Because the only thing that stops guns is more guns!

    Because the only thing that stops terrorism is more terrorism!

    Because the only thing that stops torture is more torture!

    Because the only thing that stops fire is more fire!

    Because the only thing that stops flooding is more flooding!

    Because the only thing that stops poison chemicals is more poison chemicals!

    Because the only thing that stops lying is more lying!

    Because the only thing that stops oil spills is more oil spills!

    Because the only thing that stops rape is more rape!

    Because the only thing that stops fraud is more fraud!

    Because the only thing that stops racism is more racism!

    Because the only thing that stops evil is more evil!

    Because the only thing that stops war is more war!

    Because the only thing that stops cancer is more cancer!

    Because the only thing that stops unemployment is more unemployment!

    Because the only thing that stops poverty is more poverty!

    Because the only thing that stops violence is more violence!

    Because the only thing that stops insanity is more insanity!

    Because the only thing that stops drinking is more drinking!

    Because the only thing that stops wingnuts is more wingnuts!

    Because the only thing that stops diarrhea is more diarrhea!

    Because the only thing that stops disease is more disease!

    Because the only thing that stops gambling is more gambling!

    Because the only thing that stops sex is more sex!

    Because the only thing that stops tragedy is more tragedy!

    What’s funny is how many of these are actually VERY SERIOUS POSITIONS to have that invoke a lot of chin-stroking.

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  193. stonetools says:

    @mattb:

    But that, and other folk’s invocations of the British, Switzerland, Japan, all have to come crashing into the problem of federalism

    Germany, Switzerland, and Canada all have federal systems. Somehow they have figured it out. Are you saying Americans just aren’t smart enough? Well of course we are. NRA and general right wing propaganda has a lot more to do with why we aren’t passing this kind of common sense regulation.

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  194. Bernieyeball says:

    One Nation, under God,

    Thanks for nothing God…

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 0

  195. mattb says:

    @stonetools:
    Generally speaking, if you switch “buying gun” to “obtaining license” most of that sounds good.

    Though one problem with medical issues is that mental health stuff can develop after you get your license. I’m not quite sure what’s the best answer there.

    The other key thing would be to make it that all guns (pistol, shotgun, and rifle) required a license for purchase. At least in New York State, you can buy shotguns and rifles without a license.

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  196. Rafer Janders says:

    @matt:

    In all fairness Switzerland has a population of 7 million and is about the size of a small state. The culture there is entirely different from what you see in most of the USA.

    So it’s about twice the size of Connecticut in population and similarly sized in land mass. In what way is Switzerland’s culture so different from that of CT that mass murders of children are unacceptable there in a way that they do not seem to be in CT?

    Seriously, for all those people who handwave “oh, it’s the culture, it’s different”, I’d like to ask how? Switerzland’s culture is “entirely different”? This isn’t Somalia we’re talking about, it’s another modern industrialized Western state.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 2

  197. Rafer Janders says:

    @mattb:

    But that, and other folk’s invocations of the British, Switzerland, Japan, all have to come crashing into the problem of federalism.

    Germany and Canada have federalism and also gun control.

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  198. stonetools says:

    @matt:

    Gun shows:

    Presently, 17 states regulate private firearm sales at gun shows. Seven states require background checks on all gun sales at gun shows (California, Rhode Island, Connecticut, Oregon, New York, Illinois and Colorado). Four states (Hawaii, Maryland, New Jersey, and Pennsylvania) require background checks on all handgun, but not long gun, purchasers at gun shows. Six states require individuals to obtain a permit to purchase handguns that involves a background check (Massachusetts, Michigan, North Carolina, Iowa, Nebraska). Certain counties in Florida require background checks on all private sales of handguns at gun shows. The remaining 33 states do not restrict private, intrastate sales of firearms at gun shows in any manner.

    Let’s face it, regulation of sales at gun shows is pathetic. Thanks, NRA.

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  199. Galanti says:

    @Brummagem Joe:

    Except we have the same silliness up here, where guns are classified and regulated on the basis of their looks, rather than their actual capabilities. That said, overall I think our system strikes a reasonable balance between protecting individual freedoms and the public good.

    This monstrous tragedy sickens me (my six year old is getting some extra special treatment tonight) , and there certainly needs to be debate about gun control in your country. But it needs to be rooted in logic, as the two Mattson suggest.

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  200. Rob in CT says:

    Off-the-wall idea:

    We know the vast, vast majority of this is done by young men. It’s probably age discrimination, but… could we add hoops for 20-somethings, and ease it up as you age?

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  201. matt says:

    @David M: Doesn’t matter he’s fully advocating the removal of guns from private hands. I can acknowledge all kinds of things while still wishing for something else.

    I can say though that you shouldn’t be surprised when someone who is part of a culture that worships violence decides to solve their problems with violence. You also shouldn’t be too surprised when a mentally ill person doesn’t receive treatment because the costs are too high due to a lack of universal health care (which the Swiss have). The demographics of the swiss are different too which is why they are intolerant towards immigrants and apparently Muslims (see the banning of Muslim towers).

    @Rafer Janders: Sorry I cannot fully answer that as I’m only repeating what I have been told by a Swiss friend of mine. I’ll try to get a hold of him later today to see what exactly he means. I’d rather get exact quotes then try to paraphrase at this point.

    @Mikey: ALL businesses have to run a check through the NICS before selling or transferring a weapon. I’m pretty sure you have to have a FFL to operate a business that sells guns.

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  202. mattb says:

    @Galanti:

    Except we have the same silliness up here, where guns are classified and regulated on the basis of their looks, rather than their actual capabilities.

    Right, but you do have some hard controls as well on things like magazine size, correct?

    Also, before the new legislation did the provinces regulate and license guns in Canada? Or has that always been the feds?

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  203. stonetools says:

    @mattb:

    Though one problem with medical issues is that mental health stuff can develop after you get your license. I’m not quite sure what’s the best answer there.

    In Switzerland you have to renew your license every five years. That means there’s a chance they can catch you if you develop mental problems after getting your license. Its not a silver bullet, but its better than a US system where there is essentially no check at all to see whether you are mentally capable of managing a firearm .

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  204. David M says:

    @matt:

    Doesn’t matter he’s fully advocating the removal of guns from private hands.

    You’re flat out lying here.

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  205. matt says:

    @mattb: The problem I have with the Canadian system is that they are also beholden to the “scary gun” syndrome where regulations are being written based on emotions and not logic.

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  206. Brummagem Joe says:

    @mattb:

    But that, and other folk’s invocations of the British, Switzerland, Japan, all have to come crashing into the problem of federalism. So long as individual state governments (not to mention localities) have primary control over licensing and regulation then implementing any of those systems would be difficult at best.

    Germany and Canada have federal systems. Look I don’t suggest the obstacles to proper regulation are not immense (you only need to read the comments of your name sake to understand that) but without it the carnage will continue. Personally I think it will although there’s a slight chance this might be the straw that breaks the camel’s back…. but only a very slight chance. Who knows we could have copycats by people who want their 15 minutes of fame. So we’ll have two weeks of crocodile tears, lot’s of prayers to god to come and help us (some hopes), a full court press by the NRA and bozos like matt, the kids will be buried, and it will be business as usual. SNAFU.

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  207. Brummagem Joe says:

    @matt:

    “scary gun” syndrome

    Well guns are scary unles you’re completely brain dead. Why not walk into your local grocery store and start waving one around and check out the reaction.

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  208. matt says:

    @David M: I can’t help but feel like I’m being trolled.. No one can be as blind as you about this..
    @michael reynolds: alone is full of rhetoric about ending gun ownership. Holy god man spend a little of your own time and actually read this thread. I’m not going to do it for you.
    While you’re doing that you’ll find out why something as “simple” as banning AR-15s would result in the banning of a lot if not most guns.

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  209. Brummagem Joe says:

    @Galanti:

    Except we have the same silliness up here, where guns are classified and regulated on the basis of their looks, rather than their actual capabilities. That said, overall I think our system strikes a reasonable balance between protecting individual freedoms and the public good.

    Yep the killing capacity of a O/U is equal to a semi auto Glock……are you serious?……and yep 9000 homicides a year is a small price to pay to protect individual freedoms…..of course it is.

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  210. matt says:

    @Brummagem Joe: Probably about the same reaction if you waved around a baseball bat or a knife or a sword or a 2×4 or…

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  211. Brummagem Joe says:

    @David M:

    You’re flat out lying here.

    Of course he is…….

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  212. matt says:

    @Brummagem Joe: 33000 people died last year in car accidents. About 3000-4000 people die via drowning a year of that about 1/5th are kids and a substantial amount of those occurred in pools. Deaths happen and while the numbers matter it isn’t the full story nor the end all of discussion.

    What’s funny is your obsession over that number indicates that you’re assuming that
    1. All of those homicides involved guns (they don’t only about half)
    2. No one would be killed if guns disappeared.

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  213. Bernieyeball says:

    @matt: And the same reaction if someone started throwing bullets around. Oh. No. Wait. You can’t kill people by throwing bullets at them, you need to fire them from a GUN to do that.
    But of course the GUN doesn’t have any thing to do with it.

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  214. Brummagem Joe says:

    @matt:

    Probably about the same reaction if you waved around a baseball bat or a knife or a sword or a 2×4 or…

    Indeed they are….I have a collection of edged weapons……however they don’t have quite the same killing capacity although your comment is very typical of the sort of nonsense we’re used to from the gun crowd……entirely specious.

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  215. matt says:

    @Bernieyeball: Irrelevant to the discussion at hand.

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  216. matt says:

    @Brummagem Joe: I responded to your statement with a clear counter and all you can do is respond with ad homin and insults..

    According to government statistics guns were used in 60% of homicides in 2009. So when I said “About half” I was a bit off.

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  217. Brummagem Joe says:

    @matt:

    Out come all the old fallacies…..auto accidents……drowning accidents……these are ACCIDENTS not the consequence of someone deliberately setting out to kill people with very efficient tool for the purpose

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  218. Bernieyeball says:

    @matt: Of course it is since it doesn’t support your viewpoint.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 1

  219. Brummagem Joe says:

    @matt:

    I responded to your statement with a clear counter

    Actually it’s specious bs…..I generally do try to avoid ad homs but I’m going to make an exception in the case your exceptional stupidity and lying.

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  220. matt says:

    @Brummagem Joe: WEll 40% of all murders were committed without the usage of a gun. A large number of those were committed with items that weren’t built for such a purpose. That number alone is larger then what’s going on in the UK and feeds into my narrative about our society being overly violent.

    Seriously if I’m waving around anything that could be used as a weapon people are going to be running away from me. So your “point” is just nonsense.

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  221. Brummagem Joe says:

    @matt:

    All of those homicides involved guns (they don’t only about half)

    9000 is not the total number of homicides…..it’s just the gun component of them…..

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  222. Brummagem Joe says:

    @matt:

    So your “point” is just nonsense.

    My point was that guns are scary whereas you claimed it was jsut a syndrome……..if you don’t realise this you’re bigger fool than even you appear.

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  223. mattb says:

    @Brummagem Joe:

    Yep the killing capacity of a O/U is equal to a semi auto Glock……are you serious?

    Joe, you are entirely correct that the killing capacity of a over/under, two shot gun is entirely different than that of a semi-automatic Glock. Where I’m getting lost is why that matters for the point you are making as, with the exception of short nosed models, my understanding is that licensed semi-automatic Glocks are legal in Canada.

    I also see the points that you and others raised to counter my Federalism arguments. The points are well taken — though I think they gloss over a number of important socio-historical factors.

    Admittedly, I have a hard time seeing a way to the US (and in particular the states) being open to a major change in gun licensing (or rather, I shudder to think about what sized tragedy will be necessary).

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  224. legion says:

    @mattb:

    No… it really is the key definition of a combat weapon.

    Well, you don’t get to make these definitions. I realize there’s no central definition of this, but I think a good starting point is that a combat (or “military” if you prefer) weapon is something designed primarily to kill as many people as possible. That implies a certain design philosophy that just doesn’t apply to weapons intended for hunting, personal defense, or target shooting.

    Actually there are a number of reasons that an AR-15 (or more to the point a semi-automatic weapon) is useful in bot rural and home-defense situations. And there is a real argument to be made that because there is no manual chambering, and because it can fire rounds that tumble and can stop very quickly (as opposed to going through walls), a semi-automatic rifle is a far more safe and reliable home self defense weapon than a manual revolver (yeah… that blew my mind too when I realized it).

    That entire statement is crap. First of all, if your idea of using a gun in home defense requires rapidly dumping 10 or 20 rounds at your target, you are a deeply unsafe gun owner. Such a person has not been adequately trained in safely using a firearm of any kind, and handing them one is as irresponsible as giving the keys to a Testarossa to a 16-y-o kid who just got his license yesterday. Secondly, a .223 will _not_ start to tumble within the space of an interior house room. And unless you’ve got a short barrel and a folding stock, using a full rifle for home defense will fail tragically. Your realization is simply wrong – a medium-caliber pistol with low-velocity rounds is more effective _and_ safer (and probably a good deal less expensive, too, though YMMV).

    Look, I hate to say it, but Matt actually grasps this stuff far more than you do legion.

    I hate to say it, but you both are talking out your asses. But to address the substantive question you ask, what would help? I think a good step would be a gun license handled something like the way we use drivers’ licenses. You have to take a skills & safety test, and have it renewed periodically. Having a license has no connection the number or type of guns you own. I would even try to get the NRA behind the idea by offering them hella subsidies to manage the nationwide training/certification system – they already have chapters and gun training programs in the most rural of places, they’d be the best group to do this, too. they talk a good line about gun safety, let’s see them put their philosophy to the test.

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  225. stonetools says:

    @matt:

    While you’re doing that you’ll find out why something as “simple” as banning AR-15s would result in the banning of a lot if not most guns.

    Ah, the “B” word, again. Look, buck, NO ONE is talking about banning your toys. We’re talking about background checks, safety training, having others vouch that you are mentally capable of managing a weapon that you can use to kill 30 people in a minute.
    BTW, I know people who are military and former military and they all agree that no civilian NEEDS to have an AR-15 or battle rifle of any kind. The problem is that you WANT one, you want it now, and you don’t want the kind of pesky regulations that would prevent mentally ill people from getting these type of weapons. Those kids died today because gun owners put convenience for themselves over the safety of the community . When people propose regulations that reduce CONVENIENCE , then gun owners defend their convenience by spouting the “B” word. Its a bait and switch that is sickeningly effective, unfortunately.

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  226. Rafer Janders says:

    @matt:

    That number alone is larger then what’s going on in the UK and feeds into my narrative about our society being overly violent.

    So if you accept that our society is overly violent…does that mean we should make it harder or easier for people to have guns? If the Swiss are peaceful and Americans are violent, say, shouldn’t there be much, much stricter gun control in America than in Switzerland?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 7 Thumb down 1

  227. David M says:

    @matt:

    I can’t help but feel like I’m being trolled.. No one can be as blind as you about this…@michael reynolds: alone is full of rhetoric about ending gun ownership.

    The one lying and changing of the subject by bringing up irrelevant non sequiturs is usually the one doing the trolling. And you are the only one talking about the GOVERNMENT ending gun ownership.

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  228. Davebo says:

    Matt is full of it and just making up crap. For instance, all of Great Britain over a two year period.

    551 homicides (includes murder, manslaughter and infanticide) were reported in 2011/12, a considerable drop on the previous year’s total of 638. Homicides are now down to around half of the figure for 2001/2

    Trust me, there’s a reason he tosses out assertions from his arse and then tells you to “just go look it up!”

    He know’s he’s full of it.

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  229. matt says:

    @Brummagem Joe: You are correct there was a total of about 15000 murders in 2010 with about 9000 of those involving a gun of some kind in some manner. I cannot find exact details as to how the guns were used in those 9000 murders. I’m sure in most cases the gun was used as the killing weapon. We cannot assume that all these murders are solely because of a gun though

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  230. matt says:

    @Davebo: That’s not a two year period. One year constitutes starting in 2011 and the year of records ended on the same date in 2012. The source I saw had772 homicides for 2010 in the UK where as the USA had about 13000 that same year. Since 2010 is listed as a year the USA had almost 15000 murders from official government statics it appears I need to delve deeper into the UK statistics.

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  231. Brummagem Joe says:

    @mattb:

    I also see the points that you and others raised to counter my Federalism arguments. The points are well taken — though I think they gloss over a number of important socio-historical factors.

    I’m not glossing over anything….in fact I explicity said any change is unlikely. Basically you’re doing a legalistic tap dance and then capping it off with vague abstractions about socio-historical factors. Quite honestly I find your kind of equivocations as distasteful as the complete inanities of your namesake. There’s a massive problem…..there are remedies if we want to apply some commonsense to the issue……but on past evidence this is unlikely. Finis.

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  232. Bernieyeball says:

    @stonetools: Those kids died today because gun owners put convenience for themselves over the safety of the community .

    This.

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  233. PJ says:

    @Davebo:
    Two corrections.
    The 551 homicidies are for England and Wales, not for the UK.
    It’s not a two year period, for some reason the statistics is from April to March the next year, that’s why it’s 2011/12.

    Still, per capita, the US has almost five times as many homicides as England and Wales.

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  234. matt says:

    @Bernieyeball: No those kids died today because of a terrible person who decided to do terrible things. I find it utterly abhorrent that you people are willing to give this mass murderer a pass because he used a tool you don’t like.

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  235. Brummagem Joe says:

    @matt:

    You are correct there was a total of about 15000 murders in 2010 with about 9000 of those involving a gun of some kind in some manner.

    I usually am correct about stats……..and it doesn’t matter why they happened they did happen and the murder weapon WAS as firearm.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 1

  236. legion says:

    I’d like to point something out as a part of this discussion. You know what else happened today? A guy in China also went nuts and decided to attack a school full of children. 20+ kids injured, but he was wrestled down & not one single person died. Why? Because when he lost his mind, the first weapon he grabbed was a _knife_. I’m not deluded enough to think banning guns is the answer here, but we simply cannot continue as a society where guns are easier to lay hands on than a goddamn box of Sudafed.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 7 Thumb down 0

  237. Brummagem Joe says:

    @matt:

    I find it utterly abhorrent that you people are willing to give this mass murderer a pass because he used a tool you don’t like.

    The last line of defense when all the lies and nonsenses have been blown away……WE…..WE are giving a mass murderer a pass because we don’t think mass murderers should be able to obtain tools that can whack 26 people in less than a minute.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 1

  238. matt says:

    @Brummagem Joe: Yet you don’t care about 40% of the people who were murdered because their murder didn’t involve a gun. How about instead of focusing on a tool we start advocating for a fix to our violence problem in general? We’re chasing symptoms instead of fighting the disease.

    We need a public option with strong treatment options for mentally ill people (especially for the poor).
    We as a society need to stop glorifying violence and insisting on using it to solve our problems (Iraq the drumwar for war with Iran etc).
    We need to stop glorifying everything military even when clearly we shouldn’t be.
    We need to close any NICS related loopholes and provide for a free easy way for private sales to involve a NICS. That will fix the gun show loopholes that do exist.
    We need for some tightening in CCW requirements with training and background checks as a minimum requirement. It’s kind of odd though that despite the lax areas like Florida CCWs commit crimes at a far lower rate then the average population.
    We need to stop militarizing the police and focus on community outreach. Removing the stigma of snitching will increase the chances of discovering a shooting plot before it happens.
    We need to look at our culture and ourselves in an honest light.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 3

  239. Jack says:

    @Rafer Janders: Yet in the middle east where guns are more prevalent, they use bombs because they are trying to kill more people. Someone is making them…lots of them.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 1

  240. Jack says:

    @Brummagem Joe: Dead is dead, blaming the tool or method is stupid.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 9

  241. Bernieyeball says:

    @matt: …those kids died today because of a terrible person who decided to do terrible things with a deadly weapon available in 33 states with no restrictions because gun owners put convenience for themselves over the safety of the community.

    FTFY

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 1

  242. Rafer Janders says:

    @matt:

    It’s kind of odd though that despite the lax areas like Florida CCWs commit crimes at a far lower rate then the average population.

    There’s nothing odd about it, since felons can’t obtain concealed carry permits. What you’re saying is essentially “It’s kind of odd though that despite the lax areas like Florida a group composed entirely of non-felons commits crimes at a far lower rate than a group that includes felons.”

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 1

  243. Jack says:

    @stonetools: Let’s apply his to freedom of speech. “Simply having someone submit to a medical examination and undergo basic literacy training before buying a pen would stop most of the crazies from getting pens .
    Mandating background checks everywhere, including at newspapers.
    Making it illegal to buy pens over the Internet.
    Having three people who know you well vouch for you in order for you to buy a pen (Most lone whackos would fail this: most law abiding citizens will pass this easily)”

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 1

  244. Brummagem Joe says:

    @Jack:

    Yet in the middle east where guns are more prevalent, they use bombs because they are trying to kill more people. Someone is making them…lots of them.

    Need I say more about the intelligence and value judgement of the gun crowd…..I’ve said it a couple of times already you cannot parody these people…..they are beyond parody.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 1

  245. David M says:

    @Jack:

    How about screaming fire in a crowded theater?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 1

  246. Jack says:

    @stonetools: I’m retired military and I have an AR-15 and would never suggest that they should be banned or not in civilian hands. Stop blaming the tool! It’s just a scary looking gun. My deer rifle can do so much more damage than my AR-15 and from a longer range.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 4

  247. Rob in CT says:

    Woah, Jack. Really?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 1

  248. Jack says:

    @David M: Not illegal if there is a fire. Only punishable after you do it.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

  249. mattb says:

    @legion:

    Secondly, a .223 will _not_ start to tumble within the space of an interior house room. And unless you’ve got a short barrel and a folding stock, using a full rifle for home defense will fail tragically. Your realization is simply wrong – a medium-caliber pistol with low-velocity rounds is more effective _and_ safer (and probably a good deal less expensive, too, though YMMV).

    All I can say is that you’re not up to date on the most recent thoughts on the issue of use of rifles in self defense and the relative safety of their rounds versus pistol and shotgun. Here’s one good article on the subject:
    http://www.gunsandammo.com/2012/02/10/long-guns-short-yardage-is-223-the-best-home-defense-caliber/

    Again, I really have no horse in this game. Don’t own a gun, not planning on buying one. I’m simply stating that use of sporting rifles for home defense is not particularly off the wall.

    I have other comments but they need to wait until tomorrow as I need to go make dinner.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

  250. stonetools says:

    @Brummagem Joe:

    ’m not glossing over anything….in fact I explicity said any change is unlikely. Basically you’re doing a legalistic tap dance and then capping it off with vague abstractions about socio-historical factors

    I’m a bit more hopeful than you. What we are talking about here is a long war, like the struggle for civil rights. It began long before passage of the 1964 Civil Rights Act and continues to this day. During the fight, there were also those who claimed that the South ” needed more time” because the “special Southern culture”couldn’t countenance the idea of black equality. Similarly again its South rather than any other area of the country that resists the idea of any kind of rational scheme of gun control.
    I guess what I am saying in a confused way is there is a definite cultural element in resistance to gun control that is beyond rational argument. Even the matts present arguments and discuss issues in a lot more rational fashion than the hard core gun nuts who are convinced than Obama is plotting to bring in a UN army to take away their guns.

    HMMM, maybe I shouldn’t be hopeful after all. Well, I think we’ll get there… but the war will be long and the stupid will be enormous. Unfortunately, many more will needlessly die.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

  251. Jack says:

    @Bernieyeball: Say it all you want. Today could happen every day for a year and you still won’t see a gun ban. Get over it and find some reasonable alternatives.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 4

  252. Brummagem Joe says:

    @matt:

    We need to look at our culture and ourselves in an honest light.

    I don’t dispute for a moment that we have a widespread culture of violence in the US. What you are missing is that both historically and in the present the easy access to firearms is what has enabled it to give full expression to its murderous impulses.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 1

  253. Jack says:

    @Rob in CT: Really what?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  254. Brummagem Joe says:

    @stonetools:

    I’d have agreed with you in the early 90’s but no longer…..I’m deeply pessimistic and cynical about the entire subject

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  255. David M says:

    @Jack:

    I have an AR-15 and would never suggest that they should be banned or not in civilian hands.

    Banning them is not the only option, or even what most posters here are advocating.

    My deer rifle can do so much more damage than my AR-15 and from a longer range.

    Not in the context of a mass shooting like this one.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  256. aFloridian says:

    Truly a terrible tragedy, and grievously upsetting (hardly words that do the horror of this situation justice).

    Since I see I’m not the only one here who has already thought of the political ramifications of this nightmare scenario, I will comment, and fully expect about 50 thumbs downs.

    Banning firearms sounds like a great idea, I’m sure, to those of you who have a belief in mankind’s inherent goodness. Ignoring the societal problems that lead to this violence, the mental illness, and, perhaps, pure evil of the perpetrators, we instead look to blame firearms. Yes, firearms are almost universally designed to kill other living creatures, and some, like most “assault weapons” meaning military-style rifles are designed pretty much exclusively to kill human beings. Even so, in the pursuit for an idealized safe utopia you are willing to prevent the vast majority of gun owning Americans who use firearms for hunting, target practice, and heck, to keep in the nightstand if that helps them sleep better in the hope that violent sociopath mass shooters and regular street criminals will all decide, due to the envisioned lack of guns (presuming there will not be massive numbers of weapons available on the black market), that crime doesn’t pay and so they’ll go straight. The reality it, they will always find a way. Now, would this situation have been as deadly if guns didn’t exist? Probably not, but might as well eliminate cars and alcohol for all the deaths they cause to innocents.

    I interpret the Chinese school attacks (there have been a substantial number the last few years) much differently than the anti-gun advocates here. I see it as proof of the human condition and the fact that there will always be deranged people and, take away the guns, they will use knives, axes, explosives. Assault weapons aren’t even the problem as far as firearms go. The Virginia Tech killer used small-caliber handguns with extended magazines. The Oklahoma City bombing killed scores upon scores and could happen again. I don’t expect to convince anyone, but some of the tired arguments of the NRA crowd (of which I am not a member) do make sense. Britain is hardly a carefree paradise, nor, indeed, is China. Take away firearms here and we will have accomplished virtually nothing. These particular children might still be alive, and that would be a blessing indeed, but there’s a bigger picture to consider.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 4

  257. Brummagem Joe says:

    @Jack:

    Today could happen every day for a year and you still won’t see a gun ban.

    No one is talking about a gun ban other than you…..but I’m over the likelihood of sensible regulation…..the killing will continue until morale improves.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

  258. Jack says:

    @David M: Today’s shooting occurred with a handgun. Why is everyone all upset about a scary looking rifle?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 2

  259. Jack says:

    @Brummagem Joe: We can finally agree.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  260. @Rob in CT: I (also in CT; Derby) haven’t even read the comments. I’m tired of the gun control debate, and don’t have the patience for it.

    All I know is that the people I’m responsible for that are in that area are safe and sound. No matter how close this is, I’m at least thankful that I still have the entirety of my friends and family, and that I won’t be attending anyone’s funeral that I know of.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

  261. stonetools says:

    @matt:

    We need to stop glorifying everything military even when clearly we shouldn’t be.
    We need to close any NICS related loopholes and provide for a free easy way for private sales to involve a NICS. That will fix the gun show loopholes that do exist.
    We need for some tightening in CCW requirements with training and background checks as a minimum requirement. It’s kind of odd though that despite the lax areas like Florida CCWs commit crimes at a far lower rate then the average population.

    I’m going to give you credit for these positive recommendations. You should understand that the NRA opposes any and all of these recommendations. Just sayin’.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 1

  262. stonetools says:

    @Jack: @Brummagem Joe:

    ’m not glossing over anything….in fact I explicity said any change is unlikely. Basically you’re doing a legalistic tap dance and then capping it off with vague abstractions about socio-historical factors

    I’m a bit more hopeful than you. What we are talking about here is a long war, like the struggle for civil rights. It began long before passage of the 1964 Civil Rights Act and continues to this day. During the fight, there were also those who claimed that the South ” needed more time” because the “special Southern culture”couldn’t countenance the idea of black equality. Similarly again its South rather than any other area of the country that resists the idea of any kind of rational scheme of gun control.
    I guess what I am saying in a confused way is there is a definite cultural element in resistance to gun control that is beyond rational argument. Even the matts present arguments and discuss issues in a lot more rational fashion than the hard core gun nuts who are convinced than Obama is plotting to bring in a UN army to take away their guns.

    HMMM, maybe I shouldn’t be hopeful after all. Well, I think we’ll get there… but the war will be long and the stupid will be enormous. Unfortunately, many more will needlessly die.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 1

  263. Jack says:

    @Brummagem Joe: Yet, there are posts that suggest a gun ban. If we ban high cap magazines then the smaller ones will be used in a mass murder and then there will be calls to eliminate/reduce those as well. If a semi automatic pistol is used then there will be calls to only allow revolvers. If a shotgun is used there will be calls to only allow muzzle or breach load shotguns. It always continues without end until there is an actual ban.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 4

  264. David M says:

    @stonetools:

    @matt: I’m going to give you credit for these positive recommendations. You should understand that the NRA opposes any and all of these recommendations. Just sayin’.

    Pretty much, and uses the mostly the same arguments as matt to do it. “Any regulation is the same as banning all guns, regulation won’t work, guns aren’t the problem, etc”

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

  265. legion says:

    @mattb:

    All I can say is that you’re not up to date on the most recent thoughts on the issue of use of rifles in self defense and the relative safety of their rounds versus pistol and shotgun. Here’s one good article on the subject:
    http://www.gunsandammo.com/2012/02/10/long-guns-short-yardage-is-223-the-best-home-defense-caliber/

    An interesting article – raises some good points. But it totally glosses over the problem of using a “long gun” inside a house – unless you’ve got it customized down to the size of an SMG, it’s not going to be very effective. However the article does highlight the fact that it’s not just weapon choice but ammo choice as well that makes a worthwhile home defense concept, and ammo regulation is another potential area that could be looked at for safety. And I still stand by my statement that if your home-defense tactics rely on dumping 10+ rounds in half as many seconds, you’re no longer firing at a target - you’re firing in a general direction. And that’s hazardous to everybody – if a gun owner can’t be bothered to learn to aim, they’re too dangerously irresponsible to be using a gun – hence my previous suggestion of licensing…

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

  266. stonetools says:

    @Jack:

    Let’s apply his to freedom of speech.

    That’s a clown argument, bro. You can’t kill 27 children by speaking. That’s the difference . I kind of thought that was obvious. Sorry for overestimating you.

    Again, I’m not talking about banning AR-15s. Read what I wrote, then read it again.

    An AR-15 is , more precisely, not a tool but a machine for killing lots of people at long range. That’s what it was designed to do. That’s why civilians don’t NEED it. Still, if they want it , fine-just demonstrate that they are capable of responsibly using it before getting it. That’s all I ask.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 8 Thumb down 0

  267. David M says:

    @Jack:

    Yet, there are posts that suggest a gun ban.

    Again, people here are not calling for a gun ban, but are being accused of it even after saying that’s not what they are after. Which side is not arguing in good faith?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

  268. Brummagem Joe says:

    @Jack:

    It always continues without end until there is an actual ban.

    Another unsupported assertion. Basically your position is that society at large should tolerate thousands of gun deaths a year just so your alleged rights under some law passed nearly 250 years ago continues to give you and lots of nut cases (I’m not saying you’re one of them) unimpeded access to massively efficient killing tools.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 1

  269. rudderpedals says:

    There’s a perfectly utilitarian reason to limit large magazines and more: Slowing the rate of fire and increasing the reload times means more time to escape a mass slaughter.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 0

  270. EddieInCA says:

    @aFloridian:

    These particular children might still be alive, and that would be a blessing indeed, but there’s a bigger picture to consider.

    What’s the bigger picture?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 1

  271. Bernieyeball says:

    @Jack: Jack says:
    Friday, December 14, 2012 at 18:19
    @Bernieyeball: Say it all you want. Today could happen every day for a year and you still won’t see a gun ban. Get over it and find some reasonable alternatives.

    Please show us all the post where I have advocated for “a gun ban”.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 0

  272. stonetools says:

    @Brummagem Joe:

    Jack is an example of the gun nut I was talking about who is a lot less rational then the matts. I’m not sure that its worth it to engage with him in way. You might as well reason with a spider monkey .
    Jack is unaware that there are lot of countries out there which rationally regulate, but not ban, firearms.
    Soon he’ll start talking about the UN.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

  273. stonetools says:

    @EddieInCA:

    What’s the bigger picture?

    The bigger picture is that gun control never works and shouldn’t be tried. There, boiled down Floridian’s post to one sentence

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 1

  274. anjin-san says:

    anyone who enjoys shooting or has had to use a gun in self defense

    I know a lot of people that enjoy target shooting. I don’t know anyone who has had to use a gun in self-defense.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 1

  275. Brummagem Joe says:

    @stonetools:

    Jack is an example of the gun nut I was talking about who is a lot less rational then the matts.

    He’s obviousy nuttier than some but it’s only a matter of degree……basically all these people think that society has to tolerate these annual massacres as part of the price for protecting their “freedoms.” It’s rather hard to remain temperate given that it happened not too far from where I live and could just have easily involved the deaths of my grandchildren or the loved children and grandchildren of friends. The poverty of imagination and commonsense of the Jacks and matts of this world beggars belief …..really to the extent it’s disgusting…..enough already……nothing is going to change although there is definitely a tide of revulsion running through the country that is far greater than after the Giffords, Colorada, V tech shootings so I might be surprised but I doubt it.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 2

  276. anjin-san says:

    Probably about the same reaction if you waved around a baseball bat or a knife or a sword or a 2×4 or…

    I would react quite differently. You need to physically close with someone to bring a baseball bat or a 2×4 to bear. On the other hand an assailant with a gun can walk into a store and blow 4 or 5 people away in a matter of seconds, without having to close the distance.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 8 Thumb down 1

  277. Brummagem Joe says:

    @EddieInCA:

    What’s the bigger picture?

    His rights have got to be protected……if this means thousands have to die each year including many innocent adults and children…….that’s just too bad……now let’s discuss the miniscule differences between a bolt action sporting rifle and large mag semi auto handgun….and of course the blueing on this barrel…….beautiful isn’t it.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 0

  278. Rob in CT says:

    @Jack:

    Really what?

    Your ridiculous 1st amendment analogy.

    The matts were doing a decent job of presenting a rational & reasonable check on the understandably emotional response to this.

    And then you went and waved a big, red, “I’m a f*cking moron” flag in front of people.

    Well done. Well done indeed.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 7 Thumb down 0

  279. Brummagem Joe says:

    @Rob in CT:

    The matts were doing a decent job of presenting a rational & reasonable check on the understandably emotional response to this.

    Yes I can well believe that you found the matts rational…….after all car accidents or pool accidents are essentially no different from mass shootings are they?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 1

  280. Rob in CT says:

    Rational != I agree.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

  281. Brummagem Joe says:

    @Rob in CT:

    Rational != I agree.

    Thanks for the confirmation……car accidents are equivalent ot mass shootings in your worldview.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 1

  282. Rob in CT says:

    And you know, if you want to go there: car accidents and pool accidents, to the extent they result in more deaths of innocent people than mass shootings (and they do), are not the same thing but might be of equivalent or greater concern. Obviously the intent is different and that matters. But in the end, aren’t the dead people what matter?

    Actually, the car thing is an interesting route to take. We regulate the sh*t out of cars…

    Granted, there is no constitutionally enumerated right of car ownership. But still. The car thing is probably actually good for a gun control advocate. We test drivers (increasingly so). We restrict new drivers more than experienced ones. And so on and so forth.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 0

  283. Rob in CT says:

    @Brummagem Joe:

    Do you know what != means?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

  284. aFloridian says:

    @EddieinCa

    What’s the bigger picture?

    The bigger picture is that guns will, unfortunately, never go away. The people who commit these crimes do not do so because they can obtain a firearm. Gun crime, like all crime, is a symptom of a deeper malaise. Yes, using a firearm likely increases the damage done by such madmen (or evil person), but I don’t accept that that alone is enough to remove such a fundamental right from the rest of us. Obviously you all will disagree with me strongly on this point on your own principles, but I am truly proud that Florida is leading the way with some of the most liberal gun laws in the country, with 1 in 17 Floridians possessing a CCW. I have not worried in the least about this fact. While it sounds cliche, it is true that generally the people who bother to get a CCW are not criminal by nature (else they would merely stuff a .25 in their pants like many criminals do). There are, naturally, some exceptions. What makes me most upset is to see a fool like George Zimmerman who, when his attempt at playing cowboy went horribly awry, attempted to use a fine a forward-thinking law like Stand Your Ground to defend his inexcusable behavior (which should not be protected by that law).

    While I appreciate stonetools’ gracious(!) effort to simplify my thought, I DO think some level of gun control is necessary, but I think any gun control efforts short of the complete and permanent eradication of firearms of every size and type, be they held by normal citizens, criminals, or yes, the police and armed forces would be ineffective if the aim is to stop horrors like what happened today. The assault weapons ban, for example, is a particularly pernicious aim. The difference between a semi-automatic assault rifle and a semi-automatic hunting rifle is truly a mystery to me, except that one looks scarier than the other. The prohibition on automatic weapons is an example of gun control to which I don’t object. I also don’t agree, as someone wrote here, that Florida’s concealed carry laws are too lax. I am a CCW holder in this state (I rarely carry, but do enjoy the ability to buy a gun with no waiting period and also have more freedom of movement when I travel to the range) and there numerous hoops to jump through. Compare this to Alabama where all you need is a rubber stamp – at the discretion of your local sheriff. That being said, I am beginning to see low-cost courses that I suspect do not do a good job of preparing their students for a CCW, but I will say that if the applicants are otherwise unfit the FDLE does do a background check. Hardly a perfect system, and perhaps it should be even more rigorous, but it’s hardly fair for the HuffPost (for example) to characterize this state as the Wild West.

    I’d be the last to argue that gun control is a zero-sum game. Naturally we need limits while also ensuring we respect the letter of the Constitution in that regard (an issue of interpretation to some extent which, I do not doubt, some of you will heartily disagree with me on).

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

  285. Bernieyeball says:

    I see where the deep thinkers of one of our major political parties is weighing in on this totally preventable massacre.

    I give you Mike Huckabee today:
    “We ask why there is violence in our schools, but we have systematically removed God from our schools,” Huckabee said on Fox News. “Should we be so surprised that schools would become a place of carnage?”

    Mike Huckabee March 2011:
    “I almost wish that there would be, like, a simultaneous telecast, and all Americans would be forced — forced at gunpoint no less — to listen to every David Barton message, and I think our country would be better for it. I wish it’d happen.”

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 1

  286. Brummagem Joe says:

    @Rob in CT: @Rob in CT:

    And you know, if you want to go there:

    If you can’t tell the vast difference between deaths in auto and pool ACCIDENTS and motivated gun homicides I think I’ll let this speak for itself rather than entering into lengthy exchanges.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 2

  287. Rob in CT says:

    @Rob in CT:

    You know, let me take that back.

    I’ll just say it: by saying the matts (particularly mattb, IMO) are “rational” I am not agreeing with them. Rational does not mean “I agree.” Now I grant that it means I don’t find them to be nutty, which implies that I’m not totally appalled by their arguments.

    Funny… I was part of many a discussion elsewhere on the web where “!=” was commonly used as “does not equal.” Yet when I google it, I find no such explanation.

    Therefore, I apologize for my last post. If it’s a BS usage, then it’s unfair for me to expect you to know what I meant.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

  288. Rob in CT says:

    Sigh.

    Joe,

    I’m not saying they’re equivalent in all respects. They’re clearly not. There is the difference in intent (your focus) and there is also the difference in scale (the point others have made). In both ways, they are different.

    Intent matters. So does scale. That’s all I was saying.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

  289. David M says:

    @Rob in CT:

    Funny… I was part of many a discussion elsewhere on the web where “!=” was commonly used as “does not equal.” Yet when I google it, I find no such explanation.

    You weren’t wrong, you just have to know what to google for. “!=” is the not equal operator in C, C++, C# and many other programming languages.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 0

  290. Rob in CT says:

    Hah!

    Yes, well, is was a gaming website (dedicated to the game “Civilization”). That explains it.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

  291. Brummagem Joe says:

    @aFloridian:

    The bigger picture is that guns will, unfortunately, never go away.

    This of course is a gross oversimplification of the sort much loved by the gun crowd. Of course guns, no more than mental illness or criminality which are usually the cause of their misuse will ever go away. No one expects them to. What’s under debate as a practical matter is whether it’s possible to produce a regime of regulation that will reduce the misuse problem. Most of the rest of the western world including our near northern neighbor have been able to manage it without establishing totalitarian societies so why can’t we?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 1

  292. Brummagem Joe says:

    @Rob in CT:

    I’m not saying they’re equivalent in all respects. They’re clearly not.

    You do a lot of sighing…..maybe it’s a substitute for thinking….LOL………Well this may come as a surprise to you but this is one of the numerous zany assertions by the matts that you endorsed as rational.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 2

  293. Brummagem Joe says:

    @Rob in CT:

    Do you know what != means?

    No idea….I speak English

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 2

  294. Rob in CT says:

    You’re amazing. Flabbergasting, really.

    Good night.

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  295. Andre Kenji says:

    Last year, a loser entered a school in Rio de Janeiro with two revolvers and he killed 12 people, all of them teenagers. Brazil has a very strict gun control law, meaning that it´s almost impossible for any civilian that does not work as a guard to acquire any guns. Even so, after that horrible massacre a lot of people argued about gun control because in 2005 a measure to impose even further gun control.

    So, there is always a discussion about gun control after these massacres.

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  296. george says:

    @anjin-san:

    I know a lot of people that enjoy target shooting. I don’t know anyone who has had to use a gun in self-defense.

    At least not against people, other than several cops I know, I agree. I have used my bolt action 30-06 for self-defense in bear country (Canada) – and the bolt action, with a magazine of three rounds, was more than enough for that, or other farming activities.

    Again, I don’t understand why semi-automatic are needed, or large magazine, in either hunting or protecting the ranch. Or are people getting attacked by packs of wolves that don’t turn tail at the first shot? Rifles are a necessary tool out on the land. Semi-automatics and large magazines aren’t.

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  297. Brummagem Joe says:

    @george:

    I have used my bolt action 30-06 for self-defense in bear country (Canada) – and the bolt action, with a magazine of three rounds, was more than enough for that, or other farming activities.

    According to several members of the gun crowd above there’s no difference between old fashioned bolt action sporting rifles of the sort possessed by you and my old man on his hobby farm in the 50’s and 60’s and large mag semi automatic assault rifles. Of course there then followed lots of legalistic hair splitting over what is an assault rifle. This in a nutshell is why this problem is not going to be solved anytime soon. We have a sizeable segment of society that considers these massacres a small price to pay for protecting their “freedoms.”

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  298. matt says:

    @Bernieyeball: Bullshit every state has gun control regulations and pretending otherwise is irresponsible in a discussion like this.

    @mattb: Honestly he doesn’t seem to care about being up to date with the facts. Emotion is all that matters to him..

    @aFloridian: Indeed people still probably would of died even without guns but at this point that’s just a guessing game.

    @David M: You clearly have no interest in a rational discussion. Take your trolling to 4chan where you’ll be better accepted.

    @anjin-san: I assure you I could walk into a store and kill four or five people in a matters of seconds with a good knife. Does that mean we should start heavily regulating knives too? Hell 40% of our murders are completely unrelated to guns and no one here seems to care about that.

    @stonetools: I don’t give a flying fack about the NRA. The left wingers waving the NRA around is about as dumb as the right wingers waving Acorn around. Both organizations did plenty of good even if some of what they did is questionable.

    @stonetools: WEll if you want to get technical our current gun control laws has lead us down the path to the lowest crime rate pretty much ever in the history of our country. Some people would look at that fact and the fact that 40% of murders are committed without a gun before screaming that guns are the evil cause of every murder and thus need to be banned or heavily restricted.

    @Brummagem Joe: We tolerate a whole hell of a lot more people being killed annually for the convenience of having personal conveyance (+33000). We tolerate the deaths of 3000-4000 people yearly for the conveniences of having a pool in our backyard. We tolerate the death of 200,000 Americans a year due to medical errors. We tolerate the over 30,000 people who commit suicide yearly because we believe in personal freedoms and responsibility. ETC ETC There’s plenty of things that cause the deaths of FAAAR more people then guns which we tolerate for whatever reason.

    Personally I find the over 200,000 deaths a year due to medical errors to be a far bigger problem. Mostly because unlike gun control there are clear methods that can be instituted to decrease the numbers of deaths by error.

    @Brummagem Joe: The pool accidents and such are entirely preventable while nothing can completely eliminate murders as evidenced by the 40% of murders each year that don’t involve a gun. A dead person is dead.

    @Brummagem Joe: Oversimplification? How about claiming that all murders will stop as soon as we remove guns? How about worrying about only gun deaths when there’s half a million deaths that could be prevented with simple changes? Priorities…

    @Andre Kenji: I h ad a Brasilian friend who was part of the upper class. He drove around an armored car because being abducted or shot was a constant worry for him. I had thought that there was little gun control based upon my discussions and the experiences of my sister who went to Brasil for a year.

    @george: Your lack of concern for the disabled or the weak in body is duly noted.

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  299. aFloridian says:

    @Brummagem Joe:

    According to several members of the gun crowd above there’s no difference between old fashioned bolt action sporting rifles of the sort possessed by you and my old man on his hobby farm in the 50′s and 60′s and large mag semi automatic assault rifles

    I hope you don’t include me in that group. I will happily acknowledge the difference. In my post I did write that I see little difference between one semi-automatic long gun used for hunting and one that resembles a M-16 or AK-47 weapon. Default magazine capacity may be different, but that is easily customizable (an oversight in current gun control standards, many of you will no doubt say).

    What’s under debate as a practical matter is whether it’s possible to produce a regime of regulation that will reduce the misuse problem. Most of the rest of the western world including our near northern neighbor have been able to manage it without establishing totalitarian societies so why can’t we?

    I really don’t want to emulate the laws of most of the states I am aware of that have stricter gun control law than the United States. I suppose replacing handguns with a knifing culture would result in more treatable violent injuries, but that will leave everyone else subject to unnecessarily repressive gun laws where you will likely need a license to even own a virtually useless single shot rifle. I also wonder if the gun culture of the US would be easily eradicated by stricter laws akin to the UK or Canada or if the black market demand would keep them flowing in from China, Russia, Croatia, etc.

    I am firmly opposed to another assault weapons ban, but, personally, I wouldn’t necessarily be opposed to there being some form of waiting period/ background check required for long guns as it is for handguns (at least here in Florida). That might prevent some spree shootings but I doubt it would do anything to prevent the likes of James Holmes from committing their crimes. That leads me to think that gun control advocates would feel better if we got rid of ALL semi-autos, be they handguns or long guns. If so, we should probably get rid of pump action shotguns. I guess it makes me sound like a conspiracy nut, but under that scenario I would be highly uncomfortable, particularly with the increasing militarization of our police forces. If the American people surrender their guns will we also be able to disarm the majority of our police like in Britain?

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  300. matt says:

    @aFloridian: You see little difference because generally there is little difference in the action of the gun. In a lot of cases the actual action of hunting rifles is the exact same as the “scary” guns. Now the interesting and funny part for me is that the AK and AR models use a round that is by far less powerful then hunting rifles. I have friends who use semi-auto hunting rifles that are capable of penetrating armor. A lot of the popular hunting rounds are incredibly powerful in order to secure a kill shot at 300 yards or more.

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  301. Eric the OTB Lurker says:

    I haven’t had time to wade through 300 comments, so I apologize if thas has been addressed: for those of you who feel you “need” a gun to protect yourselves on your farm from wild animals, let me just say that when you visit a national park, the Park Service doesn’t arm you with a .45 to protect you from those animals. They suggest bear spray, for example, which has even more stopping power than a .45. Yes, it stop bears.

    Interestingly, they make almost the exact same thing to protect yourselves against–wait for it!–humans. Sure, perhaps not applicable in every situation, but, in my mind, this certainly undercuts the argument for those of you who feel you “need” a gun to “protect” yourselves against the world.

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  302. matt says:

    @Eric the OTB Lurker: Yes and a national forest doesn’t consist of a large number of highly concentrated and vulnerable food animals either. No way would I stake my life on a spray in a close encounter with a pack of wild animals. Not when I could and have drop(ed) those animals at a fairly safe distance with a gun.

    Your complete dismissal of my life experiences only causes me to laugh at your naive and sheltered upbringing. A dead animal doesn’t come back for seconds. A sprayed bear WILL be back because they know food is there.

    For the average person wondering around the national forest system bear spray would be a good choice. As to the effectiveness of bear spray on other animals I have no clue but bears aren’t the only thing you should be watching out for.

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  303. anjin-san says:

    @ matt

    I assure you I could walk into a store and kill four or five people in a matters of seconds with a good knife.

    Really? What if they were all 15 feet from each other? Are you the Flash?

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  304. anjin-san says:

    @ matt

    I assure you I could walk into a store and kill four or five people in a matters of seconds with a good knife.

    What if one of them was my old martial arts instructor, who would take the knife away from you and shove it up you ass?

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  305. Eric the OTB Lurker says:

    @matt:

    Yes and a national forest doesn’t consist of a large number of highly concentrated and vulnerable food animals either. No way would I stake my life on a spray in a close encounter with a pack of wild animals. Not when I could and have drop(ed) those animals at a fairly safe distance with a gun.

    Have you ever been in a national forest? How many “packs” of wild animals typically attack humans? And I think you know full well that handguns are not going to be accurate at distance in the hands of those with little to no training–and often in the hands of those with training–in high intensity situations.

    Your complete dismissal of my life experiences only causes me to laugh at your naive and sheltered upbringing. A dead animal doesn’t come back for seconds. A sprayed bear WILL be back because they know food is there.

    I haven’t dismissed your life experiences. However, it would be one thing if Team Right advocated sensible gun policies with training, etc. But let me point out that Team Right is advocating pretty much unfettered gun ownership for everyone who will never have the kind of aptitude for using a gun–which will be most people.

    And, by the way, the point of bear spray is not so you can hang around until it comes back to eat you; it’s to incapacitate the bear so you can make your escape.

    For the average person wondering around the national forest system bear spray would be a good choice. As to the effectiveness of bear spray on other animals I have no clue but bears aren’t the only thing you should be watching out for.

    It’s pepper spray, Matt. And if it can mess up a bear, it will mess up just about every other animal. Besides, the point here is that we make this stuff for protection against humans, as well. Do police carry this stuff because it’s… ineffective? There’s also tasers that are available that police also carry.

    But, really, you kind of make my case for me here: your answers belie someone who feels the deep psychological need to aggressively confront danger rather than sensibly effecting escape. This is at bottom the ultimate driver of gun advocates who cite “protection” as the reason for effectively unfettered gun control.

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  306. Unsympathetic says:

    The tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time with the blood of patriots and tyrants elementary school children.

    Deaths on 9/11/01: 2996. Deaths in 2010 in the US to gun violence: 8775. One of these was worth a trillion-dollar war.. the other is solved with more of the same.

    I’m very much in favor of the US spending significantly more on mental health services.. no way this guy wasn’t giving off signs for the last 6 years. Also, his HS teachers were disempowered from doing anything because freedom. Seriously, not everyone is a beautiful snowflake.

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  307. anjin-san says:

    I’m very much in favor of the US spending significantly more on mental health services..

    This is very close to the core of this issue. Sadly, conservatives seem to want to make guns more easy to obtain and to further cut spending on mental health, which has already been cut to the bone, and beyond.

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  308. matt says:

    Have you ever been in a national forest? How many “packs” of wild animals typically attack humans? And I think you know full well that handguns are not going to be accurate at distance in the hands of those with little to no training–and often in the hands of those with training–in high intensity situations.

    I have no clue and I don’t care. You were the one that brought that stuff up in response to my experiences on the farm. I attempted to show you that what you’re talking about is not relevant to my experiences but for some reason you seem to want to beat this horse.

    I haven’t dismissed your life experiences. However, it would be one thing if Team Right advocated sensible gun policies with training, etc. But let me point out that Team Right is advocating pretty much unfettered gun ownership for everyone who will never have the kind of aptitude for using a gun–which will be most people.

    And, by the way, the point of bear spray is not so you can hang around until it comes back to eat you; it’s to incapacitate the bear so you can make your escape.

    Once again we’re back into the whole TEAM LEFTIES WANT ALL BABIES TO BE KILELD BY ABORTION!!! type crap again. Sorry but I shake my head when the right wingers do it so I’m going to shake my head when a left winger does it.

    I know plenty of righties who support the NRA ONLY because the NRA provides responsible training and safety classes for those who wish to be a responsible gun owner.

    Yeah and like I said earlier your coming up with a scenario that is nothing like what I have experienced in life while ignoring my agreement with your assessment of the bear scenario. I’m not going to advocate that everyone carry guns in the forest or any number of straw man arguments you’re running against.

    Cities only take up a minority of the space in this country. Most areas of this country are wide open country spaces where sometimes the nearest cop is an hour away.

    It’s pepper spray, Matt. And if it can mess up a bear, it will mess up just about every other animal. Besides, the point here is that we make this stuff for protection against humans, as well. Do police carry this stuff because it’s… ineffective? There’s also tasers that are available that police also carry.

    When it’s my life on the line I’m not willing to make assumptions. I don’t assume that because something works against one animal that it’ll be effective against ALL animals. The probability of bear spray having chemicals that are ineffective against other animals is low though.

    I don’t understand your insistence on arguing over points that we agree on. I already clearly stated that I was talking about my experience on the farm and that people on public land should stick to bear spray and such.

    Personally I would prefer to carry a pistol but that’s because I’ve had decades of experience with firearms and firearm training. If I was able to compete a rigorous police style training held by the federal government in order to gain that right I would. I believe responsible and safe gun owners shouldn’t be punished for the irresponsible people.

    But, really, you kind of make my case for me here: your answers belie someone who feels the deep psychological need to aggressively confront danger rather than sensibly effecting escape. This is at bottom the ultimate driver of gun advocates who cite “protection” as the reason for effectively unfettered gun control.

    Your answers belie someone that wants to argue with an imaginary badguy instead of actually reading and responding to what I actually type. You’re so built up in your fight against straw that you’re trying to argue over the points I agree with you. I suggest you step away for a bit and get control of your emotions and then re-read my response. You might find what I actually said to be better then what you think I typed..

    @anjin-san:

    You sound just like the gun nuts claiming WHAT IF THERE WAS A CCW THERE OR IF SOMEONE HAD A GUN.. Your going to keep changing your scenario till you feel like you’ve “won” but the reality is no one is going to win that. Personally within 15 feet knives actually tend to be faster and more effective then guns in a situation that starts relaxed with the weapons holstered.

    Anyway you said a store which indicates there’s a line all you have to do is pick the proper line and you can easily dispatch a group of people with a knife.

    I have martial arts training (and continue to do so) I also have a CCW and my first instinct in such a situation is to remove as many people as quickly from danger as possible (including myself). If given a chance I most certainly would take the criminal out but life doesn’t always allow such opportunities.

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  309. matt says:

    @anjin-san: Yes part of my solution is universal health care with strong treatment options for those who are having mental trouble.

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  310. matt says:

    What I find funny is that I actually find some gun owners to be completely scary. There’s a reason that the shooting range I choose to go to is a private club that requires all members to complete a safety course before being allowed to shoot. They also have fairly strict rules for the ranges.

    Apparently people considered Lanza a genius which means if he had decided to use a bomb instead the whole situation could of been much worse.

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  311. Rafer Janders says:

    @matt:

    I had a pack of dogs attempt to attack me on the farm many decades ago. Fortunately I had my rifle and after dropping a couple of them the rest ran.

    You know, if it’s a choice between we control guns and the dogs get you…or we leave things the way they are and a classroom of children is murdered…I’d choose the dogs tearing you to death every time. Every time.

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  312. swearyanthony says:

    @matt: “the sudden increase in crime rates in Australia”

    As an Australian, I will just say [citation needed]. You are either misinformed or lying.

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  313. anjin-san says:

    Your going to keep changing your scenario till you feel like you’ve “won”

    Not really. I just find it a bit amusing that you are assuming a scenario that would allow you to do what you claim you are capable of. Real life does not work like that, and that is something you should know if you have been around as much as your would like us to think. One thing I learned from working bars and clubs is that the room is different every night.

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  314. matt says:

    @swearyanthony: Via the Australian Bureau of Criminology

    Up to the big gun ban crime rates had been decreasing. In the year following the ban violent crime increased overall with noticeable increases in assault, robberies, and rape. Now that we’re well beyond the ban the rates have gone back down like most developed countries.

    Even Australia’s Bureau of Crime Statistics and Research acknowledges that the gun ban had no significant impact on the amount of gun-involved crime:

    The USA and Australia have seen about the same % decrease in murders over the last decade.

    @anjin-san: I’m not making the assumptions here. I was merely responding to the scenario presented by YOU. It’s quite possible for someone in a knife to also do what you presented in the scenario.

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  315. matt says:

    There’s quite a bit more going on with China and their school attack problem.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/School_attacks_in_China_%282010%E2%80%932011%29

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  316. george says:

    @matt:

    Your lack of concern for the disabled or the weak in body is duly noted

    Unless you’re talking about a quadripalegic, there’s no problem using a bolt action. At the firing range we’ve got guys in wheel chairs using them just fine, thanks.

    Actually, one guy uses a crossbow out of a wheel chair with pretty amazing results.

    But at a certain point, yeah you need some physical ability to defend yourself – and that’s weapon independent, there’s always someone too weak or sick to use any weapon short of a nuke attached to a motion sensor. So let’s just give everyone nukes, because that’s the only way to make sure? No need to go overboard, a small tactical nuke of a few kilotons should do fine.

    Life has its dangers, part of being in society is you accept some risks. Its why we don’t allow everyone whatever weapon they want (see nuke above). Now if someone wants to get away from the nanny state, power to them. But that means doing without roads, streets, manufactured goods, and everything else that comes from society rather than what they can build with their own hands.

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  317. george says:

    @Eric the OTB Lurker:

    I haven’t had time to wade through 300 comments, so I apologize if thas has been addressed: for those of you who feel you “need” a gun to protect yourselves on your farm from wild animals, let me just say that when you visit a national park, the Park Service doesn’t arm you with a .45 to protect you from those animals. They suggest bear spray, for example, which has even more stopping power than a .45. Yes, it stop bears.

    I spend a lot of time in Northern Canada, where the trouble you’re looking for is bears, typically black, in some parts polar bears (which are the only kind of bear that will stalk people, perhaps because foods pretty scarce up their). Against polar bears the weapon of choice is a shotgun with a slug, because even something like a .45 isn’t going to do much with them. Bear spray is a really bad choice, they move very fast (much faster than a human), and by the time they notice it you’re already dead – not to mention problems with wind direction and all. Everything I’ve read and seen suggests bear spray works much better on people than bears.

    Of course, most people aren’t up in those parts, so fighting off bears isn’t the issue. Protecting your farm from preditors with bear spray has to be a troll, right? You understand concepts like distance and all? You’re not really suggesting stopping a coyote at 100 yards from getting your livestock with pepper spray, are you?

    @matt:

    You see little difference because generally there is little difference in the action of the gun.

    No difference in the action between a bolt and your typical semi-automatic? Seriously? Even a very well trained soldier (WW1 BEF for instance) in battle conditions is only going to get off about five shots per minute with a bolt. Which is more than enough to protect your farm, or yourself in the woods. A semi will let even an untrained person (who shouldn’t have a firearm in any case, you should need to pass a strict test, like a driver’s licence) fire off one every couple of seconds.

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  318. Jenos Idanian #13 says:

    @anjin-san: 15 feet? How about 18 feet?

    William Burroughs: “After a shooting spree, they always want to take the guns away from the people who didn’t do it.”

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  319. Brummagem Joe says:

    @aFloridian:

    I really don’t want to emulate the laws of most of the states I am aware of that have stricter gun control law than the United States.

    Well of course you don’t. Spare us all the usual casuistry we’ve heard it all before (at regular intervals given the frequency of mass shootings). Fundamentally your position is that society as a whole must tolerate large annual massacres including of many innocents because taking any steps to minimize this problem would constitute an infringement of your supposed freedoms.

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  320. Tillman says:

    @Rafer Janders:

    Seriously, for all those people who handwave “oh, it’s the culture, it’s different”, I’d like to ask how? Switerzland’s culture is “entirely different”?

    Well, they live in a mostly mountainous region with a conscripted military (all males 20-34) and neighbors responsible for most of the devastating wars started between the 17th and 20th centuries. We weren’t around until the mid-18th, and even then didn’t share space with incredibly belligerent neighbors. Saying all industrialized Western countries have indistinguishable cultural values is naive at best given the differences in history. Sure, we’re not “entirely” different, but that’s probably hyperbole.

    @mattb:

    I also see the points that you and others raised to counter my Federalism arguments. The points are well taken — though I think they gloss over a number of important socio-historical factors.

    For some reason, I grew an immense hatred for the word “socio-historical” when I read it, even though it’s the perfect word and means precisely what you needed it to mean.

    Those other Federalist countries aren’t nearly as racially diverse as the United States, for starters. Racial diversity (and federalism) aren’t limits on gun control per se – just on how much can be accomplished in a given time.

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  321. Tillman says:

    @Brummagem Joe:

    I’m not glossing over anything….in fact I explicity said any change is unlikely. Basically you’re doing a legalistic tap dance and then capping it off with vague abstractions about socio-historical factors.

    and @here:

    now let’s discuss the miniscule differences between a bolt action sporting rifle and large mag semi auto handgun…

    Have you ever seen a law being made? It’s a fun process, incredibly legalistic. Uses very exacting language. Involves semantic squabbling and defining definitions and debating interpretations. Language is a highly imprecise medium so you want to peg it down and get it right the first time when writing a legal code.

    Then again you’ve never seemed one for nuance.

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  322. About those peaceful Euros generally and Brits specifrically: In 2009, this was a headline at MailOnline: “Culture of violence: Gun crime goes up by 89% in a decade” Britain has some of the strictest gun control laws in thew world. It is an island. And still they can’t stop a huge influx of handguns into the country or their criminal use.

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  323. Brummagem Joe says:

    @george:

    Unless you’re talking about a quadripalegic, there’s no problem using a bolt action. At the firing range we’ve got guys in wheel chairs using them just fine, thanks.

    This is the sort of surreal nonsense that the gun crowd like to mire these discussions in. Car, drowning or medical accidents are essentially no different from gun homicides. Guns aren’t scary they just create scary gun syndrome. Children are being stabbed in schools in China. Legalistic tap dancing about the definition of firearms. The focus should be on curing insanity not preventing guns gettng into the hands of the crazy. Etc…..etc…..etc. It’s all here and it’s all totally irrelevant to the central issue which is how to reduce the toll of gun homicides in the US and much of it is beyond parody. American society has made a pact with the devil and he’s going to continue to collect payments for the indefinite future as far as I can see with the matts of this world as his enforcers.

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  324. Brummagem Joe says:

    @Donald Sensing:

    Ah….the wonder of percentages. Leaving aside that this is three years old UK gun homicides are around 100 a year in a population of about 62 million as against our 9000 in a population of 310 million…..Want to work out the difference per capita Donny? Or would this be too embarrassing?

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  325. Brummagem Joe says:

    @Tillman:

    Have you ever seen a law being made? It’s a fun process, incredibly legalistic.

    Of course making laws is an incredibly legalistic process (I aught to know since my father, my brother in law, two of my kids, and my son in law were/are all lawyers). But that really doesn’t have anything whatsoever to do with the philosophical points I was making does it?

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  326. stonetools says:

    @Tillman:

    UK, Japan, Switzerland, and Spain are all culturally quite distinct, yet they achieved rational, and successful gun control regimes. Culture is not an absolute barrier to rational gun control-politics is.

    Those other Federalist countries aren’t nearly as racially diverse as the United States, for starters. Racial diversity (and federalism) aren’t limits on gun control per se – just on how much can be accomplished in a given time.

    Ah, there’s the rub-a big part of resistance to rational gun control is the unspoken fear of older whites that with gun control, “those people” will run wild and come for our property and women.

    The cultural problem really comes down to the continued success in America of the macho gun wielding individual “solving” problems like crime with a spray of accurate bullets that miraculously only kill bad guys. Of course, that’s a myth, but its a tremendously successful and enduring one.

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  327. Brummagem Joe says:

    @Tillman:

    Those other Federalist countries aren’t nearly as racially diverse as the United States, for starters. Racial diversity (and federalism) aren’t limits on gun control per se – just on how much can be accomplished in a given time.

    A nice line in casuistic bs you have there Tillman. We can’t have a gun control regime like other federal countries because we’re more racially diverse…..but we mignt get there one day…..LOL

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  328. stonetools says:

    This is the sort of surreal nonsense that the gun crowd like to mire these discussions in. Car, drowning or medical accidents are essentially no different from gun homicides. Guns aren’t scary they just create scary gun syndrome. Children are being stabbed in schools in China. Legalistic tap dancing about the definition of firearms. The focus should be on curing insanity not preventing guns gettng into the hands of the crazy.

    This. Although you forgot the huge and existential danger posed by roving packs of killer wild bears and hogs-my vote for the most ridiculous shiny object of them all.

    All of that mumbo jumbo of course is a smoke screen for ” I just want my high powered gun toy , and I want it now, without the delays and inconveniences of a legal regime that would make the community safer!”

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  329. Tillman says:

    @stonetools:

    Culture is not an absolute barrier to rational gun control-politics is.

    Not what I’m saying. I’m saying it’s a big barrier. It’s not insurmountable, but it’s not as easy as waving a magic wand like some, in their zeal, might see.

    Ah, there’s the rub-a big part of resistance to rational gun control is the unspoken fear of older whites that with gun control, “those people” will run wild and come for our property and women.

    The cultural problem really comes down to the continued success in America of the macho gun wielding individual “solving” problems like crime with a spray of accurate bullets that miraculously only kill bad guys. Of course, that’s a myth, but its a tremendously successful and enduring one.

    Precisely, but these people vote. The people who would demand the sorts of gun control everyone here would find acceptable don’t end up voting often enough to prevent crap like 2010.

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  330. Tillman says:

    @Brummagem Joe:

    But that really doesn’t have anything whatsoever to do with the philosophical points I was making does it?

    It kinda does, since you appear to be passionately discounting mattb’s “legalistic” way of argument. I imagine plenty agree with you in substance, but mattb’s going for a more granular take on things where it’s not so cut-and-dry. Even reasonable people disagree on details.

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  331. Brummagem Joe says:

    @stonetools:

    All of that mumbo jumbo of course is a smoke screen for

    Indeed it is. Sorry I omitted the roving herds of wild boar and the ever present danger of brown bears. Life of course is full of hazards. Death can come from planes, trains, automobiles, tainted food, dangerous drugs, unguarded machinery, badly designed toys, inflammable clothing…..the list is endless. And of course we devote vast resources to limiting the grim reaper’s opportunities in these areas but for some reason all the usual common sense approaches to finding remedies for a public harm are suspended when it comes to guns. Why is that? Could it be because a section of the population feel their supposed freedoms trump the wider public good and are adept at propagandizing (the shiny objects are part of the process) and using the immense US legal system to throw roadblocks in the way of remedies

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  332. PJ says:

    @Donald Sensing:

    About those peaceful Euros generally and Brits specifrically: In 2009, this was a headline at MailOnline: “Culture of violence: Gun crime goes up by 89% in a decade” Britain has some of the strictest gun control laws in thew world. It is an island. And still they can’t stop a huge influx of handguns into the country or their criminal use.

    From the Daily Mail article:

    The latest Government figures show that the total number of firearm offences in England and Wales has increased from 5,209 in 1998/99 to 9,865 last year – a rise of 89 per cent.

    So 9,865 firearm offences in 2008.

    In 2010, the US had a total of about 275,885 firearm offenses:
    * 128,750 firearm robberies
    * 138,360 firearm assaults
    * 8,775 firearm murders

    So, that’s
    89 firearm offenses / 100.000 in the US
    18 firearm offenses / 100.000 in England and Wales

    There’s a culture of violence.
    In the US.

    BTW, the firearm offenses in the UK also includes air weapons. In 2010/11, air weapons were used in 37% of the firearm offenses.

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  333. Brummagem Joe says:

    @Tillman:

    It kinda does,

    It kinda doesn’t or you didn’t understand the philosophical points I was making…..in fact it was complete non sequitur

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  334. Brummagem Joe says:

    @PJ:

    Air pistols…….when was the last airgun fatality? When that associate of Moriarty’s killed someone in the return of Sherlock Holmes?….LOL …..I’m not even sure they’re technically firearms but presumably it’s statistically convenient for the British police.

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  335. PJ says:

    @Brummagem Joe:

    I’m not even sure they’re technically firearms but presumably it’s statistically convenient for the British police.

    It would be a lot more convenient for the British police to not count them. They do and then they provide both numbers.
    I doubt it matters to victims if they are being held at gun point with an air weapon if they didn’t know that it wasn’t a real gun. And I don’t think it matters at sentencing either.

    —-

    I’m unsure if the FBI is counting air weapons or not in their statistics, what I do know that they don’t count is firearm use during rapes. So, if the FBI doesn’t count air weapons usage and the police in the UK counts firearm usage during rapes then the difference per capita is even higher.

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  336. stonetools says:

    @Tillman:

    Precisely, but these people vote. The people who would demand the sorts of gun control everyone here would find acceptable don’t end up voting often enough to prevent crap like 2010.

    This statement does give me pause. One of the reasons why the Democrats have soft-pedaled gun control is because they fear a huge backlash from the gun botherers who will rise up about this one issue and vote against the Democrats in huge numbers. The political conventional wisdom is that the 1994 assault weapons ban led directly to the Republican wave of 1994.
    Since then, Democratic politicos avoided the issue like saints avoid sin. Still, at same point, we have to make a stand in favor of rationalism and community safety, just as the Democrats did confronting segregation in late 1940s . Eventually, the Democrats’ stand cost them the South , and its been for more than a generation. But the stand had to be made, and the country is better for it.

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  337. john personna says:

    I haven’t commented on this topic because (1) nothing will reduce the tragedy, and (2) I fully expected that mere “inconveniences” for honest shooters would be rejected by advocates.

    This has been the pattern for the last few sprees, and looks to be the way it has gone again.

    For what it’s worth, I fully disdain the guy who says “I don’t want to take a couple extra minutes loading small magazines at the range, and rapid changes at the kindergarten are a fair price to pay.”

    (People who cannot distinguish between magazine rules, etc., and “take our guns” should not even allowed at the adult table.)

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  338. john personna says:

    @PJ:

    Come on guys, I’m sure those air guns are being used like starter’s pistols, or even toy guns, as a bluff in a stick-up.

    Also, I believe air guns are divided by caliber in the law. A Red Ryder(tm) at .177 can put out an eye. Lewis and Clark took a .46 caliber Girandoni air rifle that could do a bit more damage.

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  339. @Brummagem Joe:

    And of course, you utterly miss the point, as lefties almost always do. Britain’s present gun laws were enacted precisely because of a school massacre there. It was 1996’s Dunblane school massacre in Scotland, in which a 43-y/o gunman entered the school with four handguns and killed 16 children and one adult, then himself.

    There were two enactments that rapidly followed, the second amending (strengthening) the first. Thise laws made it illegal for any private citizen to possess a handgun at all and outlawed private possession of long guns in the home. (Private ownership of semi-auto rifles had been banned since 1987.) Shotguns may be owned, but must be kept at registered gun clubs under lock and key (this last has since been dropped for farmers and rural residents).

    The BBC explained the UK’s gun control laws in 2010, and yet the land still suffers from rising gun violence.

    The UK has some of the toughest gun control laws in the world. If you want to own a gun, it is very difficult to do so.

    Furthermore, since Britons are subjects, not citizens, the police there are empowered to appear at your door to inspect for guns without warrant, entering your home without your permission. They do not have to show cause to anyone at all. To purchase a gun, a Brit must “show good reason” to police to get the license to purchase and “self defense” is not a valid reason.

    So today in the UK, with private ownership of any kind of firearms illegal for practically everyone, rising gun crime is a reality. Police on ordinary patrol now going armed for the first time in their history. It is true that the overall gun-homicide rate in Britain is lower than the US – but it does not support your case because gun crime by criminal gangs and criminals who use guns just as tools of their trade is the chief problem there. The UK’s gun problem is that people who are already outside the law can get guns easily.

    What Britain has proved is the truism that when guns are outlawed, only law abiding people are disarmed. The criminals still get guns with no problems and they use them. And as I said and which you ignore, this despite the UK is an island and no guns can simply be driven across its borders, except, I suppose, on the Chunnel. Yet the firearms black market there is thriving.

    The US has an “installed base,” as it were, of 300 million guns. I have never seen this actually verified, but both Left and Right seem to accept it. Even when the UK’s laws were much less restrictive, its installed base was a small fraction, proportionally, of ours. So what kind of new enactments do you envision for the US that deals with our installed base? And deals with our extremely porous borders? Because, yeah, we are doing so well in stopping drugs from entering the country, aren’t we?

    In fact, you argue on the newer “marijuana” post on this site that our antidrug laws have invoked violence here and south of the border. So please explain how outlawing gun possession in the US, as it is in Britain, is magically exempt from those same consequences. Explain just how the established drug transport networks would not find it at least as lucrative to add guns to their ladings.

    In short, please explain any kind of plan to react to Sandy Hook that doesn’t lead directly to Britain’s dilemma: the law abiding are disarmed and defenseless and the existing criminal population remains well armed and growing with a dynamic firearms black market.

    BTW, no one knows how many otherwise law abiding Britons own a firearm for self or home protection who are not otherwise engaged in criminal activity. Anyone is the UK who really does want a gun can get one. The police do not know because, of course, the purchasers don’t tell them.

    I look forward to your non-snotty, thoughtful and well-considered response, because if you can’t offer one, then there is no reason to pay any attention to you at all.

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  340. @Mikey:

    Funny how in the aftermath of tragic events such as Sandy Hook, when the Left starts once again to bewail and condemn the “American gun culture,” they always zero in on guns and never the culture.

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  341. stonetools says:

    @Brummagem Joe:

    In the end, I think Michael way up on thread and Tillman are both on to something. We aren’t going to rationally argue people into better gun control. Those arguments are clearly on our side. The problem is that ” gun botherers” have an irrational,quasi-religious attachment to their guns, fed by mythologies of the good guy with a gun riding in to save the day.
    Its really going to be a matter of dismantling the idea that “guns are good”, that guns are just harmless tools that bad guys misuse, etc. We have to hammer home the idea that guns are killing machines and that society should not continue easy access to killing machines, because inevitably crazy people and bad guys will get access to those killing machines and come and kill us and our kids.
    Maybe shaming can play a part, as Michael advocates. Maybe this massacre may change cultural perceptions enough that we can do this.
    Tillman’s point about the politics of the issue needs to be seen as well. Is gun control really a political hill that the Democrats need to die on? Maybe the image of children dying en masse may be enough to overcome the irrationality of gun botherers and the coffers of the gun lobby.

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  342. PJ says:

    @Donald Sensing:
    Also, the Daily Mail has a done couple of those, here’s another one from 2003.
    The main theme seems to be: “Gun crime is up, blame Labour”.

    Fun facts:

    During the 18 years of Thatcher and Major (both conservatives), gun offenses including air weapons went up 90% in England and Wales, 231% if you exclude air weapons.

    During the 14 years of Blair and Brown (both Labour), gun offenses including air weapons actually declined by 10% in England and Wales, and if you exlude air weapons it went up 43%.

    But then, that’s not something that would fit what the Daily Mail is pushing…

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  343. stonetools says:

    @Donald Sensing:

    I will happily trade the UK’s death from guns rate for ours, any day, any time, any way. Is that non-snarky enough for you?

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  344. PJ says:

    @Donald Sensing:

    The BBC explained the UK’s gun control laws in 2010, and yet the land still suffers from rising gun violence.

    Actually, gun offenses in England and Wales rose until 2003 or 2005 depending on if you want to include or exclude air weapons, they have since then declined.

    Furthermore, since Britons are subjects, not citizens, the police there are empowered to appear at your door to inspect for guns without warrant, entering your home without your permission. They do not have to show cause to anyone at all. To purchase a gun, a Brit must “show good reason” to police to get the license to purchase and “self defense” is not a valid reason.

    Could you please provide us with a source for that?

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  345. PJ says:

    @PJ:

    Actually, gun offenses in England and Wales rose until 2003 or 2005 depending on if you want to include or exclude air weapons, they have since then declined.

    And here’s the source for that.

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  346. john personna says:

    @Donald Sensing:

    Funny how in the aftermath of tragic events such as Sandy Hook, when the Left starts once again to bewail and condemn the “American gun culture,” they always zero in on guns and never the culture.

    Until this shooter went off, he was part of a nice, responsible, NRA-style family. Mom took kids to the range, and taught them gun safety. link.

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  347. @stonetools:

    @stonetools:
    I will happily trade the UK’s death from guns rate for ours, any day, any time, any way. Is that non-snarky enough for you?

    No. Because it’s the rhetorical equivalent of me saying something like, “I would happily trade my investment portfolio for Mitt Romney’s” or, “I would happily trade my athletic ability for Lebron James’.”

    In other words, you have not addressed the issues at play at all. You’ve just made a wish. But wishes are not plans or policy.

    So have a nice day and a Merry Christmas. I mean that sincerely. But I’m not going to read or respond to any more your comments.

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  348. PJ says:

    @Donald Sensing:

    But I’m not going to read or respond to any more your comments.

    Considering that you argued things that are false and have failed to respond to my comments , I’m not surprised.

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  349. anjin-san says:

    Until this shooter went off, he was part of a nice, responsible, NRA-style family. Mom took kids to the range, and taught them gun safety.

    Which leaves me wondering, could this tragedy have been prevented with something as simple as a gun safe. My guns all live in one.

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  350. george says:

    @anjin-san:

    Which leaves me wondering, could this tragedy have been prevented with something as simple as a gun safe. My guns all live in one.

    Same, and I wondered that too. Again, people not willing to deal with a simple inconvenience like opening the safe – and then swallow the Patriot Act full. I just don’t get it.

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  351. matt says:

    @george: You’re completely and utterly missing my point. Of course a bolt action is different but a semi auto hunting rifle ISN’T!.. I personally wouldn’t want to use a .45 against a bear either as shotgun with slugs would get a much quicker response. Does the dude in the wheelchair also shoot a bolt action? Or does he use a semi-auto like the older and disabled hunters I know?

    @Brummagem Joe: Well probably has something to do with the details required to do what you want. Details matter and writing the law to ban AR-15s and ak-47s would result in the unintentional banning of many if not all semi-auto hunting rifles shotguns and pistols. Yes people hunt with pistols and quite often. There’s a huge cottage industry. I know people who at times couldn’t use their bolt action rifles for hunting either due to recent surgery or because of disablement. While a healthy person can bang out shots extremely quickly with a bolt action someone that has limited movement or range can either have a hard to impossible time trying to hunt with such a gun. A semi auto hunting rifle on the other hand is much easier to hunt with. IT’s the same reason that Illinois and some other states allow disabled hunters to use a cross bow during bow season.

    @stonetools: Grow up. Seriously grow up and realize that your experience of the USA is not the end all. Then I suggest you take a trip out to rural America and stay on a farm so you can see the shit we have to go through to feed your ignorant existence. Hogs are a TERRIBLE terrible problem here in Texas There are millions of feral hog and they are rapidly growing.

    http://www.smithsonianmag.com/science-nature/A-Plague-of-Pigs-in-Texas.html

    So either stop trying to troll us with intentional stupid or broaden your knowledge about the very real challenges of farm life before you comment again here. Otherwise your posts aren’t even worth the time it takes to skim them.

    BTW an ak is NOT a high powered rifle neither is an AR15. WHat IS a high powered rifle are purpose built hunting rifles like the 270 or 338 or 30 06 or about any popular hunting rifle which can penetrate armour at range and are lethal for miles. I use an AK clone for hog hunting because I know that beyond 300 yards the round will be in the dirt and safe.

    @Brummagem Joe:
    Displaying more of your ignorance in this post. Air rifles and pistols are DEADLY. I know people who hunt with air rifles and I also know people who have killed cats and such with their air pistols. Just because there isn’t an explosion involved doesn’t mean that the projectile cannot be launched at lethal speeds. IF you could please spend a little of your time informing yourself about a subject before making such broad comments this whole discussion would be going much better. Thank you.

    @anjin-san:
    I concur with that. I don’t have a gun safe so I store my bolts in a strong lock box.

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  352. matt says:

    What I don’t understand is why Joe thinks 9000 people dying is all that matters and that the 6000 people who are killed without guns are irrelevant. I also don’t get why Joe is worried about gun violence when low hanging fruit like fixing medical errors could save +200,000 people’s lives a year. There are several low cost and relatively easy methods that have been developed for the hospital industry to reduce or eliminate errors but for various reasons (mostly financial penny pinching and just plain old “we’ve been doing it this way for decades”) is keeping this from happening.

    Our current gun laws has seen us through an unprecedented drop in crime in the last couple decades. Screaming for more unintelligent/untargeted gun control with no hope of blunting murder rates seems a little nonsensical. Personally I’ve already listed what I believe we need to do as a start and if anyone here was serious about decreasing murders they would be signing on.

    @matt:My suggestions.

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  353. anjin-San says:

    Hmm. Wonder who is opposed to gun safes.

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  354. Swearyanthony says:

    @matt: actually, no. You’re talking nonsense. Here’s one article for you. There’s plenty more: http://injuryprevention.bmj.com/content/12/6/365.full

    Results: In the 18 years before the gun law reforms, there were 13 mass shootings in Australia, and none in the 10.5 years afterwards. Declines in firearm-related deaths before the law reforms accelerated after the reforms for total firearm deaths (p = 0.04), firearm suicides (p = 0.007) and firearm homicides (p = 0.15), but not for the smallest category of unintentional firearm deaths, which increased. No evidence of substitution effect for suicides or homicides was observed. The rates per 100 000 of total firearm deaths, firearm homicides and firearm suicides all at least doubled their existing rates of decline after the revised gun laws.

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  355. matt says:

    @Swearyanthony: That’s funny because you’re own government’s statistic contradict your link..

    Ooh lookie I can do it to.

    http://www.ncpa.org/sub/dpd/index.php?Article_ID=17847

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  356. matt says:

    I guess my long post is going to be stuck in moderation forever…

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  357. matt says:
  358. matt says:

    I find this whole talk about bears to be funny. Many years ago when my ex-fiancee was much younger she attended a family reunion up in Quebec. During the outdoor picnic a bear wandered up and actually stole some chips and stuff from one of their cars. This of course was a dangerous problem so one of her family members retrieved a gun from their car. They then shot and killed the bear right there. So even French Canadians are rolling around with guns in their cars because of bears.

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  359. Eric Florack says:

    Ponder this; All it would take is one firearm in the hands of someone other than the perp to keep most of these kids from dying.

    Meanwhile, in Israel, school teachers carry heavy firearms to protect students.

    And yes, I’m suggesting exactly this.
    After all, if I can’t trust someone with something as relatively simple as a firearm, how can I trust them with my kids?

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  360. Eric Florack says:

    @anjin-san: Perhaps you’d not heard in the rush to condem guns, Anjin…. about the 33 people in China knifed to death.. by one individual… on the very same day the CT thing was going down?

    Somehow, though I doubt inconvenient facts like that won’t sway you, good little Stalinist as you are.

    (spit)

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  361. anjin-san says:

    @ Florack

    good little Stalinist as you are.

    I have to give you credit, you keep raising the stupid bar higher.

    I own several guns & have been shooting for 45 years – I am a pretty good shot. Come out to CA sometime and we can go out to the range and see who has more game.

    I said keeping guns in a gun safe (as I always do) is a good move and might have prevented this tragedy. I also said I worry that a relative who has profound mental health issues might get his hands on a gun.

    Please explain how that makes me a stalinist – when you get done with your little spit fit, that is.

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  362. anjin-san says:

    the 33 people in China knifed to death.. by one individual… on the very same day the CT thing was going down?

    Link?

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  363. anjin-san says:

    Stalinist

    BTW, my dad taught me to shoot. When he was young, he taught gun safety and target shooting at a summer camp to earn extra money. When he was a bit older, he dropped out of college to enlist in the army in the middle of a shooting war. When I was a kid & I got to where could handle a pistol, he would let me wear his marksman badge from the army sometimes.

    Take your brainless insults and shove them up your ass.

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  364. Eric Florack says:

    @anjin-san: the thought of you with a gun is going to cause sleepless nights.

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  365. anjin-san says:

    @ Florack

    My favorite is my Baretta 92f with the 15 round clip & rosewood grips. It’s a man’s gun, I doubt you could handle it. A P238 LADY might be a good choice for you, but its probably out of your price range.

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  366. anjin-san says:

    Noticed that you never came up with a cite for this:

    the 33 people in China knifed to death.. by one individual… on the very same day the CT thing was going down

    Seems that you are, well, a liar. And something of a bitch. Bad combination…

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  367. mattb says:

    @anjin-san:

    My favorite is my Baretta 92f with the 15 round clip & rosewood grips. It’s a man’s gun, I doubt you could handle it. A P238 LADY might be a good choice for you, but its probably out of your price range.

    Now worries about Eric F and guns. Apparently the Govmnt somehow doesn’t allow him to own one. So he’s one of us unarmed “sheeple.”

    Which leads me to…
    @Eric Florack:

    Ponder this; All it would take is one firearm in the hands of someone other than the perp to keep most of these kids from dying.

    I love how this is always your response to this sort of event… yet you never seem to follow your own advice. You always seem to have an excuse for why you go unarmed and expect someone else to walk into the line of fire for you.

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  368. mattb says:

    @anjin-san:
    33 were not killed in the attack. But 22 (or 23 in some reports) were wounded — some remain in critical condition — in the knife attack. And that attack has been part of a “spree” of bladed weapon attacks on Chinese schools.

    http://www.thedailybeast.com/articles/2012/12/15/not-just-sandy-hook-china-s-terrifying-knife-attacks.html
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/School_attacks_in_China_%282010%E2%80%932011%29

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  369. george says:

    @mattb:

    33 were not killed in the attack. But 22 (or 23 in some reports) were wounded — some remain in critical condition — in the knife attack. And that attack has been part of a “spree” of bladed weapon attacks on Chinese schools.

    Yup, crazy is pretty much universal. But it does take a lot more time and effort to kill 20 people with a knife than with a semi-automatic. Slowing down crazy isn’t a bad thing. Again, I’m wondering what situations require more than a bolt action with an internal magazine of say three? My 30-06 with that setup has served me extremely well for hunting, for defense in bear country, and for protecting livestock. And I suspect would serve just as well in self defense against intruders if it was ever required (though inside the house I think I’d go with a long knife, better for close quarters).

    Semi automatics with 15 shot magazines are unnecessary and dangerous to society, for hte same reason we don’t allow anyone to buy grenades or small thermnuclear devices.

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  370. mattb says:

    @george:

    But it does take a lot more time and effort to kill 20 people with a knife than with a semi-automatic.

    Effort — yes. Time, not as much as you’d think… but that’s a different conversation (and would muddy the waters quite a bit).

    To your other points… I think there should be a discussion about restricting the availability of semi-automatic rifles with detachable magazines. The fact that you don’t need a license/permit to purchase or use them in most states is problematic. Likewise, restricting magazine size makes sense — especially if such legislation deals with previously grandfathered equipment.

    Semi automatics with 15 shot magazines are unnecessary and dangerous to society

    Just rifles? Or are you including pistols in that?

    I ask becasuse semi-automatic pistols opens up a huge can of worms…

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  371. anjin-san says:

    @mattb

    But 22 (or 23 in some reports) were wounded

    Yes – I suspect the point of Florack’s post is to claim a higher number of victims than in the Sandy Hook tragedy – he is either lying, or has fallen for a lie he read on a right wing rant site. Both happen pretty regularly.

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  372. anjin-san says:

    @mattb

    It’s worth noting that Florack has bragged that he has disarmed knife wielding assailants on more than one occasion.

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  373. anjin-san says:

    TPM blows up the right wing myth that “only our guns keep us free”…

    http://talkingpointsmemo.com/archives/2012/12/in_search_of_the_guns_freedom_unicorn.php?ref=fpblg

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  374. mattb says:

    @anjin-san:

    It’s worth noting that Florack has bragged that he has disarmed knife wielding assailants on more than one occasion.

    No crap… really?! That’s an image….

    But having spent enough time around these sort of things, there’s always an outside chance that it’s possible.

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  375. matt says:

    @george: Fast cars are unnecessary and a danger to society. SUVs are unnecessary and a danger to society. Swords are unnecessary and a danger to society. Pools are unnecessary and a danger to society. Smoking is unnecessary and a danger to society. Alcohol is unnecessary and a danger to society. Caffeine is unnecessary and a danger to society.

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  376. george says:

    @matt:

    Fast cars are unnecessary and a danger to society. SUVs are unnecessary and a danger to society. Swords are unnecessary and a danger to society. Pools are unnecessary and a danger to society. Smoking is unnecessary and a danger to society. Alcohol is unnecessary and a danger to society. Caffeine is unnecessary and a danger to society.

    So using that line of reasoning, there’s no reason not to allow anyone who wants one to have a thermonuclear device, or a few thousand tons of TNT, or maybe a couple hundred canisters of nerve gas?

    The point being, society already draws a line between individual rights of possession and dangers to society. The question is always where that line should be.

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  377. matt says:

    @george: Tell us again about how you need a gun with a large magazine to kill a bunch of people at a school..
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bath_School_disaster

    Tell us people that have seen the Oklahoma city bombing or 9/11 that you need a gun to kill a lot of people. Keep trying..

    @george: You’re not following my line of reason. My line of reason is that a lot of things we allow directly or indirectly result in a LOT of deaths. WE allow those things because we as a society have decided that those costs are worth it. The costs of allowing guns to be legal is far less then the costs of allowing cars or SUVs to exist or most of what I just listed.

    The point being, society already draws a line between individual rights of possession and dangers to society. The question is always where that line should be.

    Well car accidents kill 33000 people a year which is 4x the number of people killed with a gun. So you should be advocating the banning of cars first. Pools kill more children a year then anyone with a gun. So pools should be banned too. Prescription pill abuse directly kills many many more people then either cars or guns indirectly kill. 200,000 people a year die because of medical errors yet I don’t think you care to pay the increased fees and give the increased information required for simple record keeping changes that would drop that number significantly.

    To cruel sad reality is you’re only concerned about the dangers to a society when a gun is involved. The much more dangerous stuff that you use daily is perfectly fine..

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  378. george says:

    @matt:

    Tell us again about how you need a gun with a large magazine to kill a bunch of people at a school..

    Pretty sure I never said that – it’d be a silly statement. In fact, you’ll note I mention a lot of things which would achieve the same goal – grenades, small nukes, nerve gas. But just because a lot of things can be used, doesn’t mean we don’t (and shouldn’t) make it harder to get some of them.

    To cruel sad reality is you’re only concerned about the dangers to a society when a gun is involved.

    Again, not sure why you have that impression. I’m pretty concerned about the dangers to society for many other things – you can start with the ones I mentioned above if you like.

    My line of reason is that a lot of things we allow directly or indirectly result in a LOT of deaths. WE allow those things because we as a society have decided that those costs are worth it.

    Oddly enough, that’s exactly my point – as a society we decide in what costs are worth it … as I said, where we draw the line. Its not the one extreme where anything goes (every billionaire gets his or her own nuke if they can afford it), nor is it the extreme where no one is allowed any thing that can be used (you can kill someone with a rock). I’d argue the line should be drawn with semi-automatics with detachable magazines on the other side. Obviously you disagree.

    Out of curiousity, how do you feel about allowing say grenades, or LAW rockets? Both are very effective, and in many circumstances moreso than even a fully automatic rifle. Should they be allowed? Where would you draw the line?

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  379. matt says:

    @george:

    Out of curiousity, how do you feel about allowing say grenades, or LAW rockets? Both are very effective, and in many circumstances moreso than even a fully automatic rifle. Should they be allowed? Where would you draw the line?

    You can go to hell. Implying that all I care about is destructive force is part of the reason why it’s impossible to deal with you nuts.

    Start asking for changes in cars and other tools you use and I’ll take your concerns seriously. Till then you’re just a douchebag trying to put others at risk so you can feel better.

    That’s all I have to say to someone that has rejected suggestions that would be effective at reducing overall violence issues.

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  380. anjin-san says:

    Start asking for changes in cars

    This seems like a bogus argument. Cars have been being modified for additional safety for over half a century. It’s worth noting that safety improvements often had to be mandated by the government, and that the manufactures often actively opposed them.

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  381. matt says:

    @anjin-san: But yet you can still buy a sports car with a retarded amount of horsepower. Yet you can buy a SUV with way more capacity then you’ll ever need. The safety features you speak of are safety features for the operators not always the people being killed by them.. There’s plenty of similar safety features on guns now that didn’t exist back in the day including the concept of a safety itself..

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  382. george says:

    @matt:

    You can go to hell. Implying that all I care about is destructive force is part of the reason why it’s impossible to deal with you nuts

    You’re taking this too personally. We’re both just names on the internet to the other, and I have no more basis for assuming all you care about is destruction than you have for assuming I want to get rid of all firearms.

    Look, there’s a spectrum out there between the rights of individuals to own things, and the right of society to ban them. On one end, the British Medical association proposed banning knives for safety reasons. Closer to the other end, I know people who think they should be allowed to own grenades and fully functioning tanks – and they’re not nut cases in any normal sense of the word, at least not any more than the BMA is. People can surprise you with their answers even for what at first glance seems to be crazy opnions.

    You could argue no one should be allowed to carry a knife, or that everyone should be allowed to carry grenades, and depending upon the reasoning, in either case be a nut case, or a reasonable person with an opinion that others disagree with.

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  383. anjin-san says:

    I’m sorry Matt, but you are comparing apples to orangutans. You can just as easily argue that we need to ban toxic cleaning products that are available in any market and cause deaths every year.’

    The subject at hand is guns. Why are you trying to change it?

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  384. matt says:

    @anjin-san: How so? All of them are tools or items used by people for various reasons. All of them are items that are abused by bad people. There’s absolutely no difference and your refusal to realize that is silly. A dead person is a dead regardless of the method behind the killing. Otherwise you’re just being intellectually dishonest.

    Your problem is you enjoy those fast cars and those big SUVs so you can’t fathom why you should have to go without them just because of the irresponsible owners.
    That puts you exactly in the same place as me except my “toy” isn’t involved in nearly as much death as yours.

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