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“Universal Background Checks” Likely Unenforceable

gun-constitution

One of the centerpieces of President Obama’s gun control package that was unveiled yesterday is so-called “universal background checks,” essentially the idea that every single gun purchase in the country would have to go through the same type of instant background check that gun dealers are required, by both Federal Law and the laws of most states, to conduct prior to selling any firearm. Presently, all Federally licensed gun dealers, which essentially means every person engaged in the business of selling guns, must submit information about the seller to a Federal database, and to refuse to sell to anyone who the database indicated was not legally able to own a weapon. This is a duty that licensed gun dealers must comply with regardless of where the transaction takes place. Thus, when a licensed gun dealer is at a gun show, which many dealers participate in on a regular basis, they must still conduct background checks on prospective purchasers.Background checks are also required for licensed dealers who sell over the Internet or via catalogs. Thus, talk of a “gun show loophole” is misleading because it implies that guns purchased at gun shows are not subjected to background checks. To a large degree, this is untrue. Where the so-called “loophole” comes into play is when we start talking about private sales. For example, if I own a weapon and a friend or neighbor wishes to purchase it, we can conduct the transaction in private without any background check being required. Since I’m not a licensed gun dealer, I’m not required to comply with the law. Occasionally, individual gun owners will bring a weapon(s) to a gun show looking for prospective purchases. As with my sale to my neighbor, those sales do not require a background check. This is all that the so-called “gun show loophole” amounts to.

President Obama and other supporters of gun control make the claim that as many as 40% of the gun sales in the United States fall under this “loophole,” but John Fund takes a look at the matter and finds that claim to be hard to believe:

The guns that Obama, Bloomberg, and others claim escape background checks are those sold or transferred between private parties. But can that number really be 40 percent?

The dubious statistic of guns that avoided background checks — which is actually 36 percent — comes from a small 251-person survey on gun sales two decades ago, very early in the Clinton administration. Most of the survey covered sales before the Brady Act instituted mandatory federal background checks in early 1994.

If that alone didn’t make the number invalid, the federal survey simply asked buyers if they thought they were buying from a licensed firearms dealer. While all Federal Firearm Licensees do background checks, only those perceived as being FFLs were counted. Yet, there is much evidence that survey respondents who went to the smallest FFLs, especially the “kitchen table” types, had no idea that the dealer was actually “licensed.” Many buyers seemed to think that only “brick and mortar” stores were licensed dealers, and so the survey underestimating the number of sales covered by the checks.

Another reason for the high number is that it includes guns transferred as inheritances or as gifts from family members. Even President Obama’s background proposal excludes almost all of those transfers.

If you look at guns that were bought, traded, borrowed, rented, issued as a requirement of the job, or won through raffles, 85 percent went through Federal Firearm Licensees and would have been subject to a background check. Only 15 percent would have been transferred without a background check.

Now, 15 percent is certainly a much smaller number than 40 percent, and perhaps raises the question of whether or not we need to be making some of the biggest changes to federal firearms law in 50 years for such a small amount of gun transactions. Indeed, there’s little evidence that these private sales are a major source of gun crime to begin with. More importantly, though, as Brad Plumer notes, the type of “Universal Background Check” that President Obama wants is, in all likelihood, impossible to enforce:

Things would be different under a universal background check system. Let’s say I want to sell my gun. My colleague Dylan Matthews is interested. Instead of selling it directly to him, we might both have to travel to a federally licensed gun dealer, who would run the requisite background check on Dylan and facilitate the sale.

The big challenge, says Ludwig, would be enforcement. There are 300 million guns currently in circulation and the federal government doesn’t have any data on who owns what. There’s no national registry for guns. All the federal trace data shows is who originally bought the gun from a licensed dealer.

“So let’s say a universal background check law passes and a gun I bought back in 2008 shows up on a Chicago crime scene a month from now,” says Ludwig. “The police show up at my door and ask who I sold it to. I say I sold it before the [universal background check] passed and at that time I wasn’t required to ask any questions.” There would be no way for police to know if he had complied with the law or not.

More importantly, of course, people who are involved in selling weapons to, shall we say, less than reputable people aren’t going to give a single thought to failing to comply with a background check system. Indeed, they cater to people who wouldn’t be able to purchase weapons from a licensed dealer and end up paying a heavy premium as a result. In the event a universal background system is put into place, these black market dealers  will likely increase the cost of the weapons they sell due to the increased risk of selling outside of a mandated system. It will be impossible for the government to stop these transactions. Indeed, by the time these guns are used in a crime, it will be impossible for law enforcement to trace where the gun has been at all.

Added into all of this, of course, is the fact that a background check system like the President wants would have a significant impact on the right of private individuals to dispose of their property. If a gun collector wants to sell a few pieces from his collection to another collector, for example,  or if a family member wants to leave their gun to a relative in their will, why should they be required to go to a licensed dealer to complete the transaction? Sweeping these people up into the system does little to solve the problem of guns getting into the hands of people who shouldn’t have them, but does a lot to make the lives of average people more complicated. Of course, isn’t that what government is all about anyway?

The President’s call for universal background checks sounds like a good idea but, like most good ideas, the details reveal it to be unenforceable and largely unnecessary.

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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. michael reynolds says:

    Still more evidence that efforts to defend the gun cult cause smart people to say stupid things. I’ll let someone else take this one.

    Hot debate. What do you think? Thumb up 23 Thumb down 22

  2. OzarkHillbilly says:

    Because it is not a perfect solution we once again should do the only thing we can do about gun violence in this country: Dig more graves.

    Love it.

    Highly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 35 Thumb down 15

  3. mattb (who is in favor of enhanced gun regulation) says:

    @michael reynolds:
    For what it’s worth, Doug’s representation of Plummer isn’t wholly true to the article. Plummer and Jens Ludwig characterize universal background checks as (1) difficult, rather than impossible, and (b) most likely worth while.

    Here’s the section that immediately follows the extended quote Doug clipped:

    Still, Ludwig isn’t sure that this is a fatal flaw. “Most people who own guns are middle-class, law-abiding citizens,” he says. “If you tell them to do a background check, I think they’ll do it voluntarily.” And for those who prefer to evade the law, the government might have to provide more resources for police to do undercover gun buys on the secondary market—in order to ensure compliance. “That’s never going to be perfect, but anything you can do to tighten the secondary market will help.”

    Would universal background checks reduce gun homicides? Ludwig thinks so.
    http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/wonkblog/wp/2013/01/16/obama-wants-universal-background-checks-for-guns-would-it-work/?wprss=rss_ezra-klein

    Highly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 22 Thumb down 2

  4. stonetools says:

    To be honest, I’m beginning to think that Doug is auditioning for a job as NRA lobbyist.

    Here is what the article concludes about the efficacy of background checks:

    Still, Ludwig isn’t sure that this is a fatal flaw. “Most people who own guns are middle-class, law-abiding citizens,” he says. “If you tell them to do a background check, I think they’ll do it voluntarily.” And for those who prefer to evade the law, the government might have to provide more resources for police to do undercover gun buys on the secondary market—in order to ensure compliance. “That’s never going to be perfect, but anything you can do to tighten the secondary market will help.”

    Ludwig also concludes that universal checks will likely reduce gun homicides. Funny how Doug leaves that out.

    Highly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 20 Thumb down 4

  5. Tsar Nicholas says:

    “Likely” uneforceable? Isn’t that akin to saying that a law banning in-home possession of ganja or a law banning oral sex in bedrooms “likely” would be unenforceable?

    Obviously the notion that every sale of a firearm mandatorily would be subject to background checks is preposterous and never could fully be enforced. Not even on Planet Liberal.

    – WWII veteran sells vintage rifle to a family member. Newsflash: Law or no law nobody is running a background check and nobody will know about it nor care about it. How do you enforce the mandate in that scenario? With unicorn power?

    – Two Army buddies from Vietnam decide to exchange guns. Obviously neither will run a background check on the other, law or no law. How do you enforce the mandate in that scenario? With mind control?

    – Drug dealer in Chicago sells illegal handgun to one of his own drug runners. Good luck enforcing the background check requirement on that one.

    Hot debate. What do you think? Thumb up 15 Thumb down 10

  6. stonetools says:

    Also too,

    Ninety-two percent of Americans favor background checks for all potential gun buyers, according to a new CBS News/New York Times poll.

    For an idea doomed to fail and maybe even not likely to pass Congress, it sure has overwhelming popular support.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 14 Thumb down 4

  7. Boyd says:

    A few corrections, Doug:

    1) Dealers don’t submit purchaser information to a database. The purchaser’s information is checked against a “prohibited persons” database, but no database is (legally) updated with the pitcher’s information. That may indeed be what you meant to say, but if so, you were a bit unclear.

    2) “Since I’m not a licensed gun dealer, I’m not required to comply with the law.” Again for the sake of clarity, a non-dealer isn’t covered by the law requiring dealers to conduct background checks, so it’s not really a matter of not complying with the law (which sounds like something illegal).

    3) There are several alternative methods of conducting background checks, including using prior background checks, such as those that have been performed in the process of issuing a concealed carry permit, depending on state law. States may also perform their own checks instead of using the National Instant Check System.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 7 Thumb down 0

  8. wr says:

    @Tsar Nicholas: Since we have laws against murder and yet murders still happen, clearly the laws are useless and we should revoke them all.

    Highly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 28 Thumb down 3

  9. gVOR08 says:

    @mattb (who is in favor of enhanced gun regulation): Damn. Facts. You really don’t get internet tradition. Thank you.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 7 Thumb down 0

  10. Mikey says:

    Why would you have to travel to an FFL-holding dealer? Just make the NICS accessible to anyone who wants to sell or transfer a gun. There’s plenty of space in Clarksburg for a few more racks of servers.

    Tens of millions of guns change hands, through sale or transfer, every year in the U. S. Even 15% of that is a significant number.

    I don’t think your assertion that instituting universal background checks would be “unnecessary and largely unenforcable” is supportable.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 13 Thumb down 2

  11. rudderpedals says:

    It’s probably higher than 40% but at least there’s something behind that number, unlike Fund’s article and the bs 15% figure.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 9

  12. The Q says:

    You know, every time I travel on the freeways in LA, I realize how ridiculous the law is for signalling before a lane change and how silly those speed limit signs are since no one seems to signal or travel under 65.

    Obviously those laws don’t work since they are plainly unenforceable, because, if they were, 99% of the drivers would follow them.

    Ergo, why have them?

    Highly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 19 Thumb down 3

  13. Alex Knapp says:

    If I want to sell my house to another person, why do I have to go through a realtor?

    Because it reduces fraud and ensures compliance with local property laws, that’s why.

    Ditto working through a licensed gun dealer.

    Hot debate. What do you think? Thumb up 15 Thumb down 6

  14. Rafer Janders says:

    @michael reynolds:

    Still more evidence that efforts to defend the gun cult cause smart people to say stupid things.

    And once again, I say he was already stupid.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 8 Thumb down 4

  15. JKB says:

    @Mikey:

    You seem confused about how these background checks are made. The FFL calls a number which is the State Police, who run the name however they do. Then they either approve the transfer as the person is not a prohibited person, or put a hold on the transfer. The purchaser then has to work with the State NICS office to clear up the matter, unless of course, they are a prohibited person in which case they just let the matter drop.

    There is no “computer access”. The FBI does not permit non-law enforcement access to or information from their databases. If you need information you have to go through your police. Not to mention, if all you had to do was enter a name in a computer, some a-hole reporter would run people and then publish the results.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 2

  16. JKB says:

    @Alex Knapp:

    Must be a local thing, because you aren’t required to go through a realtor everywhere. You might want to look into some cronyism between your “realtors” and the state and local governments.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 1

  17. Alex,

    You don’t need a realtor in Virginia or any other state I’m aware of. I see houses “For Sale By Owner” all the time.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 11 Thumb down 0

  18. JKB says:

    @The Q: Ergo, why have them?

    Because they come in handy when city hall needs a new pair of shoes.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 1

  19. matt says:

    @Alex Knapp: In most if not all areas you’re not actually required by law to go through a realtor to sell your house.

    @Mikey: I’m glad that someone else agrees with expanding the NICS for free to the public. I’ve been advocating that one for a while.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 1

  20. Alex Knapp says:

    My bad. You’re right.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 0

  21. Alex Knapp says:

    However, when universal background checks have been required on the local level, and are required to go beyond the NCIS and include local data, they work staggeringly well.

    http://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2008-06/mcow-fsa060308.php

    “Local-level background checks were found to be associated with a 27 percent-lower firearm suicide rate and a 22 percent-lower homicide rate in adults aged 21 years or older.”

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 8 Thumb down 0

  22. C. Clavin says:

    Gun control is hard….therefore we shouldn’t even try.
    It’s getting pretty f’ing stupid in here.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 12 Thumb down 5

  23. Mikey says:

    @JKB: I know quite well how it works, and your scenario is not true for all states. Some states have provisions for dealers do it that way, in others it is necessary to have dealers call CJIS directly.

    Dealers don’t get anything besides a go/no go indication. There’s no reason that can’t happen over the internet. You access a web interface, you enter the prospective buyer’s relevant information, you get a big green check mark or a big red X. The appeals process for a big red X doesn’t have to change from what it is today.

    If you find the prospect of the web interface distasteful, or believe it a security risk, there’s no reason we couldn’t hire more people to staff the CJIS call center.

    Either way, you haven’t provided any reason why the NICS can’t be mandated for all sales and transfers (with common-sense exceptions, such as Grandpa leaving his WW2 souvenir to his grandson).

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

  24. rudderpedals says:

    @Alex Knapp: The buyer is going to notify an official government worker right away about the sale when the deed walks across the counter to be recorded. You had the right church, wrong pew.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 0

  25. grumpy realist says:

    The only thing that is going to cause the US to buckle down and take on those NRA nitwits is if a bunch of suicidal loons from the Mideast use our laxity with gun laws to hold a massacre each weekend. And even then, I think the NRA would balk.

    The gun owners down seem to understand. Their paranoia about dem EEVIL gummint comin to take MAH GUNZ away is exactly what the gun manufacturers want to see. Gun manufacturers would be absolutely delirilous if everyone felt he had to have a gun in hand just to step outside the house safely. The fact that this is a reasonable way of life only in a war zone, is of course, conveniently forgotten.

    “An armed society is a polite society.” Whoever in the NRA came up with that was a marketing genius. I haven’t noticed that Somalia and other equivalent places with high levels of gun ownership have the manners suitable for an Edwardian diningroom, but I guess that if we just wait another 500 years they’ll have calmed down by then.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 4

  26. Wouldn’t the simplest solution be to have Wal-Mart and whoever else wants to do background checks for private transfers, do it, and charge $30 or something?

    Further, there are private dealers that regularly attend gun shows, and I have regularly seen them advertise on their tables “no background check required”.

    And as Boyd stated, the ATF isn’t allowed to check keep of firearm transfer. Dealers with a FFL are required to keep bound book records, but private sellers aren’t (the exemption to this is private individuals that have Curio & Relics permit which allows the transfer of antiques [e.g., World War II-era Mausers and Mosin-Nagants] without a background check every time).

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 1

  27. @Timothy Watson: That should read “the ATF isn’t allowed to keep records of firearm transfers. “

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

  28. I’d be interested to find out how many private sellers run checks without being required to before selling a weapon to an unknown buyer.

    I know I would. I’d make the buyer pay for their own background check up front, too.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

  29. Michael Robinson says:

    Doug has never bought or sold a car. Clearly.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 9 Thumb down 0

  30. anjin-san says:

    So once again we hear from the “American Can’t Get It Done” crowd. We cant have less expensive health care with better outcomes like most advanced countries do. We can’t have decent public transportation like most advanced countries do.

    And we can’t have lower levels of gun violence like most advanced countries do.

    Let’s slap a USA #1 bumper sticker on the SUV and call it a day.

    Highly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 19 Thumb down 2

  31. anjin-san says:

    You might want to look into some cronyism between your “realtors” and the state and local governments.

    And you might want to look into some cronyism between gun manufacturers, the NRA and governments in red states, but of course you wont’t.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 10 Thumb down 3

  32. Gromitt Gunn says:

    Doug quotes an article that says (as part of his post)

    Another reason for the high number is that it includes guns transferred as inheritances or as gifts from family members. Even President Obama’s background proposal excludes almost all of those transfers.

    Doug then says

    if a family member wants to leave their gun to a relative in their will, why should they be required to go to a licensed dealer to complete the transaction?

    Tsar Nicolas then says

    WWII veteran sells vintage rifle to a family member. Newsflash: Law or no law nobody is running a background check and nobody will know about it nor care about it. How do you enforce the mandate in that scenario? With unicorn power?

    That is all.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 8 Thumb down 1

  33. Tony W says:

    Background checks will be voluntarily complied with as long as we have a solid, national registration system. Anybody who sells a gun without sending in the little postcard to the national registration agency, can be held liable for the future use of that gun. Exactly mimics the way we do automobile registrations. Your gun gets lost? Better tell the feds – or you might find yourself with a big liability.

    Over time, as long as each gun is at any time held by a law-abiding citizen we’ll get a pretty good handle on things.

    Ahem…Now it’s time for the gun nuts to explain to me why universal registration is bad, how it leads to confiscation of our kitchen butter knives, etc. Oh – also you should point out that this won’t solve every problem on planet earth so we should not do it.

    Have at it!!!

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 8 Thumb down 6

  34. Tony W says:

    Ooh – forgot one. Explain how my solution would not have prevented any of the tragedies of white people getting shot in blue states.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 2

  35. Sandman says:

    @anjin-san:

    And yet we still are the best country in the world. Go figure.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 1

  36. anjin-san says:

    @ Doug

    You forgot to mention the Gestapo…

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 1

  37. legion says:

    @Sandman: That doesn’t prevent us from wanting to make it better still. You, one assumes, would have been happier if the US had stopped time somewhere back in the 50s…

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

  38. Just 'nutha ig'rant cracker says:

    You did a nice job of shilling for the NRA on this post. I’m so glad to know that your libertarian leanings don’t overshadow your need to give da trut to the sheeple.

    Everybody chant: More guns- more safety. Ommmmmm……..

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 5

  39. Unsympathetic says:

    @anjin-san:

    Unfortunately for your sarcasm, America does have better outcomes than other countries.. when you look at health over 65. What causes this? You know it: Medicare.

    For the first time, at age 65 Americans are beneficiaries of the same kind of social policy that their counterparts in other lands enjoy. And presto, change-o: Their life expectancy catches up with and eventually surpasses those of the French, Germans, Britons and Canadians. Reality is always liberal.

    http://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/harold-meyerson-us-health-care-leaves-much-to-be-desired/2013/01/15/6b154846-5f5d-11e2-b05a-605528f6b712_story.html

    Medicare not only provides better health outcomes than the rest of the US system in aggregate, but it also controls costs better.

    http://www.nejm.org/doi/full/10.1056/NEJMp1204899

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 7 Thumb down 1

  40. Just Me says:

    I think universal background checks are useful, and I think the best solution would be to have a system that can be used by a non licensed citizen and without fees or at least very minimal fees.

    I think if fees are too expensive, people will skirt the law, and it is possible it wouldn’t pass constitutional muster.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 1

  41. anjin-san says:

    @ Unsympathetic

    I will just assume you are not familiar with my political views.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 7 Thumb down 1

  42. LC says:

    I really enjoyed how Doug responded to Alex’s comment, and managed to ignore all of the comments above which call him out on ignoring the conclusions of the study he cited.

    Just ignore the facts.. they’ll go away, I’m sure.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 15 Thumb down 1

  43. michael reynolds says:

    @Rafer Janders:

    I resist that conclusion because Doug can be very insightful on some things. But his libertarianism is a sort of mental block. Once he veers off into LP weirdness it’s dumb and dumber time.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 13 Thumb down 2

  44. Davebo says:

    Thus, talk of a “gun show loophole” is misleading because it implies that guns purchased at gun shows are not subjected to background checks. To a large degree, this is untrue.

    No Doug, it’s absolutely true. Do licensed dealers sell their wares at gun shows? Of course they do.

    However do they, on average, make up more than say 60% of those selling guns at gun shows? My experience says no, they don’t.

    How many times a year do you attend a gun show Doug?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 1

  45. JKB says:

    Brilliant. The morons in NY state forgot to exempt the police from their foolish gun and magazine bans.

    Don’t worry, the government is moving to ensure their minions are more equal than law abiding citizens. Of course, the reason police need high capacity magazines is because past experience has shown they can’t hit the broadside of a barn.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 6

  46. mattb (who is in favor of enhanced gun regulation) says:

    @Just Me:

    I think universal background checks are useful, and I think the best solution would be to have a system that can be used by a non licensed citizen and without fees or at least very minimal fees.

    Which would be to open up the NICS database in the way that @Mikey described here (btw, Mikey’s a good example of a pro-smart-regulation AND pro-gun person… btw @Matt’s on board with this as well).

    BTW, the positive aspect of this for people who want to legally buy guns is that they can find out if they clear a background check ahead of time. And if they don’t, it gives them a chance to appeal before they hit the buying stage.

    Basically — if done for free — it becomes a win/win situation which also ends up undercutting accusations of straw buying for people who buy guns legally and later resell or transfer ownership.

    As other people have said, we already do this for cars… why not for guns?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 0

  47. Herb says:

    @michael reynolds:

    “But his libertarianism is a sort of mental block. Once he veers off into LP weirdness it’s dumb and dumber time.”

    Indeed. You can’t triple stamp a double-stamp!

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 0

  48. michael reynolds says:

    Read this.

    A section:

    I accidentally killed my best friend when I was 15. Shot my best friend of eight years a week before we started high school. I was sitting in his room holding his rifle across my legs as he talked about how he had looked it up in some collectors guide and it was worth more than when he got it (Christmas or birthday or something). All the sudden there was a gigantic explosion and the rifle flew off my legs and I looked over as my friend fell over holding his gut and the whole world was tinted a hazy red.

    I came way too close to having the same experience myself. And way too close to being shot in a hold-up. And way too close to losing my wife in an attempted rape.

    The gun cult is sick. Doug’s defense of them is sick. They are the mental equivalents of Scientologists: brainwashed, brain-dead, angry, aggressive and threatening toward any who question their fanatic beliefs.

    But we are going to cure this country of your sickness. We’re going to outgrow you and leave you in the dust, another embarrassing relic of a shameful past.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 9 Thumb down 8

  49. anjin-san says:

    @ JKB

    Of course, the reason police need high capacity magazines is because past experience has shown they can’t hit the broadside of a barn.

    I guess they need a real life right wing action hero such as yourself to show them how it’s done.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 8 Thumb down 1

  50. anjin-san says:

    Excellent news on the mental health care front:

    http://www.hhs.gov/news/press/2010pres/01/20100129a.html

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 1

  51. Rafer Janders says:

    @JKB:

    Of course, the reason police need high capacity magazines is because past experience has shown they can’t hit the broadside of a barn.

    Well then, I’m convinced. Plainly we need them stationed at schools.

    (The cognitive dissonance is great with this one. On the one hand, cops won’t hit what they aim at, on the other, we need armed cops to protect schoolkids. How’s that going to work out when they shoot at the gunman but hit a bunch of kids instead?)

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 10 Thumb down 2

  52. markm says:

    I don’t have an issue with background checks and I don’t know any law abiding types that do….but I don’t see those folks being but a miniscule part of the equation.

    It seems to me that when I turn on the news and see ‘500+ people were shot and killed in Chicago last year due to gang violence’ that right there is a good place to start. I remember reading about ‘gang sweeps’ back in the mid to late 90s but not recently. In fact, it seems there is more of a push to release inmates due to lack of funding.

    If you cut the head off that snake and deal with that problem, many of the issues of the day dry up. But that would amount to actually doing something.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 1

  53. SDHarms says:

    Two guys go into separate car dealerships in Dallas and each buy a car with a loan. Lots of paper, lots of “background”(credit history) checks. On leaving they exchange cartags and each goes to live in a separate city and never makes a payment on the cars. The loan company cannot find the cars or the guys in default. The point? All the regulations in the world dont make criminals honest. Requiring a private sale to go to an FFL is “outlawing all private property transactions unless they are sanctioned by the government” — welcome to tyranny.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 11

  54. @SDHarms:

    “The point? All the regulations in the world dont make criminals honest.”

    I remember seeing this anecdote in a book called “No $hit, Sherlock” by Captain Obvious.

    Ever since then, I sleep with my front door open, leave the keys in my car, and post all my passwords to the internet. After all, criminals gonna criminal. Can’t do nuthin about it.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 12 Thumb down 2

  55. Tyrell says:

    I think that any person under 18 will not show up on most checks. I think
    there are laws that keep juvenile records sealed. Probably the same for people classified as mentally disabled who have convictions.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  56. Lorne Marr says:

    Okay,

    I am really starting to get sick of hearing a quadrillion gun-nuts screaming “DON’T TAKE MY GUNS”.

    I am a libertarian. I fully support liberty, freedom and all that. But freedom does not mean that we can do ANYTHING we want to without repercussions! I honestly don’t understand why so many blind libertarians can’t see that the ONLY way to lower the number of shootings is to lower the number of weapons. That’s math for ya!

    What do you need guns for anyway? I have a family in Slovakia – there are almost no gun holders there (compared to US anyway) and do you know how many murders with a ranged weapon happen there yearly? Up to 10 – 20!!!

    So don’t come near me with that BS about “defending myself against people with guns” etc. I’ll hit you with a baseball bat.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 2

  57. SC_Birdflyte says:

    Even commonsense solutions stand no chance in the current political environment. BTW, I own a shotgun (legacy from my grandfather) and have no problem with letting local law enforcement know that I have it. There will be precious little chance of reform unless and until some nut goes on a rampage in the executive offices of the NRA or on the floor of the House of Representatives. Then you’ll see change happen double-quick.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 1

  58. john personna says:

    As I am hearing it, “reasonable” gun owners want to put changes in place, so that everyone owns the same guns, with maybe 1 or 2 percent excluded by better background checking.

    When you combine this with their own “criminals will always find a way to get guns” what do you have?

    A great effort to keep the status quo in place.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

  59. Tony W says:

    @michael reynolds: Yep. My 17 year old (at the time) “gun-proofed” brother shot past his buddy and through both panes of his open bedroom window with the 22 pistol he had purchased at a pawn shop. He swore it was empty, turns out a chamber remained in the round.

    He learned that summer day how quickly a couple of window panes can be replaced in an urban area, had it all fixed up before mom got home. She never knew…. Had there been more than a window as the casualty, the story could have been very different.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

  60. C. Clavin says:

    “…welcome to tyranny…”

    It’s because of idiots like this that nothing positive, or productive, can get done.
    And when I say idiot…I’m being generous.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 7 Thumb down 1

  61. john personna says:

    You know, Morning Joe said yesterday two things straight up:

    – no one needs an assault rifle

    – when you talk to these people they always come around to saying they need them to defend against our own government, our own soldiers.

    Joe, former Republican congressman, said it more forcefully than I ever have, actually. So maybe there is hope that the “everyone needs an AR-15″ minority will be recognized as a fringe.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

  62. Rob in CT says:

    It seems to me that when I turn on the news and see ’500+ people were shot and killed in Chicago last year due to gang violence’ that right there is a good place to start

    By making it harder for those gangs to get guns. Harder, not impossible. Ideally, this would impose very little hardship on the law-abiding. If you have good ideas on how to make that happen, great. If your only answer is “aw shucks, nothing can be done to decrease the supply of guns available to criminals” then you’re helping no one, including yourself.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 0

  63. Rob in CT says:

    @john personna:

    While I largely agree, the fact that handguns are a bigger problem remains.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

  64. markm says:

    @Lorne Marr:

    What do you need guns for anyway? I have a family in Slovakia – there are almost no gun holders there (compared to US anyway) and do you know how many murders with a ranged weapon happen there yearly? Up to 10 – 20!!!

    Out where I live, the population density is pretty thin but the number of guns probably outnumbers the people. We have few murders and I can’t recall the last gun related murder.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  65. John Burgess says:

    @OzarkHillbilly: I can come up with imperfect solutions to many, many problems. Implementing them, though, is going to cost you money, money that you might have better uses for. My Hamburger Consumption Permit, for example. Then there’s my 32-oz Softdrink Permit..

    Both of these will (imperfectly) improve American health. But if they solve even a bit of the problem, why not go for it?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 2

  66. Mikey says:

    @john personna: Should it really be a matter of “need?” I mean, I don’t “need” a 545-horsepower Nissan GT-R that goes from 0-60 in less than three seconds and tops out at 196 MPH, nor could I ever explore the higher reaches of its capabilities on any public road in America, but I can still buy one. (If I had the money. Which I don’t. *sob*)

    While I think the “we need it in case our government turns tyrannical!!!!” argument is entirely inane, there’s still a liberty principle that’s served when people can possess weapons that are nearly identical in form and function to those used by the government.

    The key, of course, is that in a society of more than one person, no liberty principle is absolute and unfettered. And I think a lot of gun enthusiasts believe that shouldn’t apply when it comes to guns.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 0

  67. markm says:

    @Rob in CT: @Rob in CT:

    By making it harder for those gangs to get guns.

    I get the goal….but i’m saying do away with the gangs and the guns go away. The drugs go away. Crime in general drops. Those are actual results and you would see large immediate results.

    As I said above, I have no problem with background checks and I don’t know anyone that does. But it just seems we are debating the fringes…small percentages….when we should be touting a program(s) that yield large undeniable results.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  68. john personna says:

    @Rob in CT:

    The thing that sticks in my rationalist craw is that the assault rifle thing should be easy. The impacts on individuals from restrictions are minor. It is inconvenience for reduced risk. The justifications for wide ownership of AR-15s with large capacity magazines are bizarre.

    I see the handgun argument as more complicated. I don’t really have a handle on how reduced availability would change the whole system dynamics. If everyone who feels safer with a handgun had to buy a coach gun (shortish double barreled shotgun) instead, would fewer do it? Would the shotgun owners be safer?

    It’s a bit harder to do a stick-up with a coach gun, but probably more effective.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

  69. john personna says:

    @Mikey:

    We are talking about risk to the public on one side.

    What should you use to justify risk?

    Merely wants?

    I don’t think we do that as a pattern in our society at all. I mean we’re back to tommy guns. If people want them, why aren’t they freely available?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

  70. Rafer Janders says:

    @Mikey:

    While I think the “we need it in case our government turns tyrannical!!!!” argument is entirely inane, there’s still a liberty principle that’s served when people can possess weapons that are nearly identical in form and function to those used by the government.

    What’s that principle? People can possess ONE type of weapon — semi-automatic rifles and submachine guns — that are nearly identical in form and function to those used by the government, and that’s the very sort of weapon that’s also ridiculously easy to turn against one’s fellow citizens.

    However, ordinary citizens can’t posses heavy machine guns, chain guns, grenades, mines, RPGs, mortars, recoilless rifles, armored personal carriers, tanks, heavy artillery, surface to air missiles, air to ground missiles, nuclear weapons, etc., i.e. the sorts of weapons a real-life tyrannical government actually would use. If we’re talking about making ordinary citizens the force equal of the government, that ship sailed several centuries ago. You can’t “maintain your liberty” with an AR-15 against a rain of over the horizon launched drone missile strikes. To think otherwise is the purest fantasy.

    But that, of course, is what’s actually being served — fantasy, the childish Walter Mitty dreams of millions of maladjusted men who think that an assault weapon in the back of the Durango somehow makes them a combination Robin Hood and John Wayne (the movie one, not the real-life draft dodging one).

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 1

  71. john personna says:

    I guess Mikey that the “rationalist” argument for incremental change is that AR-15s with large capacity magazines are more like tommy guns than they are like granddad’s deer rifle.

    We have a market division now.

    It is in the wrong place. Not by much. Just by a little. And it should move.

    That doesn’t have to mean taking away all the AR-15s. It might mean taking away the large magazines though, and possibly making the AR-15s a little slower to change magazines. Making them a little more like granddad’s deer rifle.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

  72. markm says:

    @john personna:

    If everyone who feels safer with a handgun had to buy a coach gun (shortish double barreled shotgun) instead, would fewer do it? Would the shotgun owners be safer?

    A coach gun would be hard to conceal….or are you just talking about home protection?.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  73. john personna says:

    @markm:

    I agree. I was thinking about stick-ups, and that a raincoat would hide it there, but certainly it would impact daily “criminal carry” by gang members, etc.

    You can’t stick it in the back of your pants.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  74. john personna says:

    (But in terms of household violence, escalated domestic abuse, suicide, the coach gun might be much like the pistol.)

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  75. Rafer Janders says:

    @SDHarms:

    The point? Since criminals will evade the laws, we may as well not have any laws in the first place. That about right?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

  76. Rafer Janders says:

    @SC_Birdflyte:

    There will be precious little chance of reform unless and until some nut goes on a rampage in the executive offices of the NRA or on the floor of the House of Representatives. Then you’ll see change happen double-quick.

    It would really help if he was black, or a Muslim, or best of all a black Muslim.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

  77. markm says:

    @john personna:

    I was thinking about stick-ups

    For that case, the coach gun would be ideal in that you would have to make an effort to miss the target….but would be a pain for transport.

    I conceal my pistol in my front pocket with no printing. If I didn’t tell you I was carrying, you wouldn’t know.

    Back on topic….I don’t think there are background checks for shotguns…or at least the last one I bought there wasn’t. The last pistol I bought there was and you weren’t leaving with the weapon until you cleared the check.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  78. Rafer Janders says:

    @markm:

    A coach gun would be hard to conceal….or are you just talking about home protection?.

    If you’re talking about carrying it for self-defense, why would you need to conceal it? The people who need to conceal their weapons are usually criminals.

    I’m coming around to getting rid of concealed-carry permits, at least. If you want to carry a gun, you should have to carry it openly, where your fellow citizens can see it and be warned.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

  79. markm says:

    @Rafer Janders:

    H’bout going after the criminals for breaking the laws currently on the books?.

    Schools in Chicago shut down from time to time due to gang activity. I’m sure the same happens in LA, Detroit, Philly, etc.. Why wouldn’t the first step be to take down the gangs?.

    I keep hearing the “if we can save but one life….” mantra. You could save a hell of a lot more than that by targeting the problem.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 1

  80. Rafer Janders says:

    @markm:

    I conceal my pistol in my front pocket with no printing. If I didn’t tell you I was carrying, you wouldn’t know.

    That’s the thing: I want to know. I don’t think you should be able to hide it from your fellow citizens. If you’re not intending to use that gun in a stick-up, or to murder someone, why are you hiding it? Be out, loud and proud. Own it.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 0

  81. Mikey says:

    @john personna: As I’ve said before, i consider things like 30-round magazines as conveniences, and really have no problem with limiting those. But there’s a point at which “you don’t NEED that” just isn’t a valid argument, because we allow people to have a great many things that are dangerous and pose a danger to the public if misused.

    It occurs to me that the liberty principle probably doesn’t extend as far as I’d thought, so I may re-think the validity of that particular point.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

  82. markm says:

    @Rafer Janders:

    If you’re talking about carrying it for self-defense, why would you need to conceal it?

    It’s the law. Us law abiding gun nutters tend to be….law abiding.

    Some states have concealed carry, some are open carry (which is plain stupid) and some don’t allow any carry.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  83. markm says:

    @Rafer Janders:

    Be out, loud and proud. Own it.

    Why would you want to be a target?. If you are to do harm and there are three people in your way, one has a hog leg strapped to him….which would you try to take out first?.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  84. Rafer Janders says:

    @markm:

    H’bout going after the criminals for breaking the laws currently on the books?.

    You are aware that we have police departments and prosecutors, that this is already their job, and that they already do this every day?

    Why wouldn’t the first step be to take down the gangs?.

    Again, we try to do this already.

    I keep hearing the “if we can save but one life….” mantra. You could save a hell of a lot more than that by targeting the problem.

    And again, we already do this. But we can do more than one thing at a time. The cops and prosecutors on the ground can target the gangs, while the legislators in the statehouses and Congress can craft new gun control legislation. We can hit this on multiple fronts.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

  85. john personna says:

    @markm:

    So we don’t do anything about crime now? ;-)

    See, the “shouldn’t we do that first” is a little late. We’ve been targeting criminals with guns since forever. The good old 1934 act was about reducing their access to dangerous weapons. And of course we don’t allow convicted felons to own guns.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

  86. Rafer Janders says:

    @markm:

    Why would you want to be a target?.

    I’m sorry, I thought guns were a DETERRENT to crime? Now the argument is that having a gun makes you more of a target? Some deterrent effect….

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 0

  87. Rafer Janders says:

    @markm:

    It’s the law. Us law abiding gun nutters tend to be….law abiding.

    Yes, my point is it shouldn’t be the law. I’d refashion the law to get rid of concealed carry and allow only open carry.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

  88. Mikey says:

    @Rafer Janders: Well, as I just replied to John P.: “It occurs to me that the liberty principle probably doesn’t extend as far as I’d thought, so I may re-think the validity of that particular point. ” In light of the points you raise, I think it should be considered mostly (if not entirely) symbolic and of little real value. There’s simply no reachable parity even if Joe Schmoe can own something that looks and acts just like G. I. Joe’s M-16.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

  89. john personna says:

    @Mikey:

    Honestly, I think you recognize that “you don’t need that” is justification for magazine restriction.

    Perhaps you worry that in the future more genuine needs will be impacted? I’d be with you defending those needs.

    I won’t write a blank check for anyone’s wants, though.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  90. Rafer Janders says:

    @Mikey:

    But there’s a point at which “you don’t NEED that” just isn’t a valid argument, because we allow people to have a great many things that are dangerous and pose a danger to the public if misused.

    Agreed, there is a point. We can all agree that, say, kitchen knives are at one end, and nuclear weapons at the other, of the spectrum of dangerous things. We can agree that “you don’t need that” isn’t a valid argument for, say, cars, because many people do need cars, but “you don’t need that” is a great argument for why people can’t have their own personal nuclear warheads.

    Now we need to determine where guns (and the various categories of guns) which are specifically designed for, and have no other use than, firing bullets to violently render and tear the flesh and vital organs of living things, thereby killing or gravely wounding them, fall on that spectrum.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 0

  91. Mikey says:

    @john personna:

    That doesn’t have to mean taking away all the AR-15s. It might mean taking away the large magazines though, and possibly making the AR-15s a little slower to change magazines. Making them a little more like granddad’s deer rifle.

    I agree with this.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

  92. stonetools says:

    @markm:

    I get the goal….but i’m saying do away with the gangs and the guns go away. The drugs go away. Crime in general drops. Those are actual results and you would see large immediate results.

    Gangs have been part of human society ever since we’ve gathered in cities. Gangs have been in US since the 19th century (Remember that movie “Gangs of News York?”).Until the 1970s, Gangs fought each other largely with knives, chains, clubs, and rocks. In the 1970s, they upgraded to guns and then semi-automatics. The result? A surge in gang related gun homicides.
    Bottom line, its the guns.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

  93. john personna says:

    @Rafer Janders:

    Legal carry has a permitting process everywhere, right? Or are there places where you can shop and go?

    I don’t really love wide carry, but at least it has a process in place. I hope those have training and testing requirements that weed out the impatient and easily agitated.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  94. markm says:

    @Rafer Janders:

    You are aware that we have police departments and prosecutors, that this is already their job, and that they already do this every day?

    And you are aware that 500+ people died last year in Chicago?. Apparently whatever is being done lags demand by a large margin.

    If you want to ‘do something’ while not focusing on the criminals then we’ll still be here years from now debating small percentages. Why not focus on the problem and kill multiple birds with one stone?.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 1

  95. markm says:

    @john personna:

    So we don’t do anything about crime now? ;-)

    GAAAAH!.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  96. john personna says:

    @Rafer Janders:

    Now we need to determine where guns (and the various categories of guns) which are specifically designed for, and have no other use than, firing bullets to violently render and tear the flesh and vital organs of living things, thereby killing or gravely wounding them, fall on that spectrum.

    For what it’s worth, Canada considers a flintlock not a firearm at all. You can do those things (slowly) with one, and it isn’t a huge problem for them.

    Our muzzle-loaders are lightly governed. I think they are firearms, but you can still mail-order them in most states, etc.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  97. john personna says:

    @markm:

    Sorry. You’ve been very reasonable.

    I was getting hung up on “shouldn’t we first

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  98. markm says:

    @Rafer Janders:

    I’m sorry, I thought guns were a DETERRENT to crime? Now the argument is that having a gun makes you more of a target? Some deterrent effect….

    I note that you didn’t answer the question.

    It is an undeniable deterrent when the criminal doesn’t know who is armed.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 1

  99. Rafer Janders says:

    @markm:

    And you are aware that 500+ people died last year in Chicago?.

    Those 500 plus people died in large part by gunfire. Less guns, less deaths. It’s a simple calculus.

    Apparently whatever is being done lags demand by a large margin.

    Yes, we need to do more. One of those “more” things is getting rid of their easy access to guns. Thank you for supporting this.

    If you want to ‘do something’ while not focusing on the criminals then we’ll still be here years from now debating small percentages.

    I can assure you, we do focus on the criminals. We’ve been focusing on the criminals ever since we’ve had criminals and police. I know multiple federal and state prosecutors who’ve worked on organized crime taskforces and dedicated their lives to stopping gang violence.

    But if your position is that we shouldn’t do anything about gun control until we get rid of crime, well, then that’s just nonsense, and an effort to distract from the problem.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

  100. @markm:

    Why wouldn’t the first step be to take down the gangs?.

    Because that would just be tyranny. We have a constitutional right to be in a gang.

    Besides, gangs don’t kill people. Gang members with guns do.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 0

  101. C. Clavin says:

    500 were killed last year in Chicago…yet gun control actually reduced the murder rate by 17%.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

  102. Rafer Janders says:

    @markm:

    And you are aware that 500+ people died last year in Chicago?

    And in that same year, approximately 42 people were shot to death in the whole of the United Kingdom, a country of 60 million people that has multiple large cities (London, Manchester, Liverpool, Glasgow, Edinburgh, etc.) that suffer from gang violence.

    Does the UK have gangs? Yes. Does it have crime? Yes. What it does not have, however, is easy access to guns.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 0

  103. Mikey says:

    @john personna:

    Honestly, I think you recognize that “you don’t need that” is justification for magazine restriction.

    I guess so–or really, it’s more like “you don’t need that entirely unfettered.” It’s that the huge magazines cross the line between the liberty interest of the individual and the safety interests of everyone else.

    If such weapons weren’t, as you so aptly put it, the “revealed preference” of “spree” killers, I’d probably think differently about limiting magazine size. But at this point it seems a very small limitation of convenience that could result in a very great return.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

  104. Rafer Janders says:

    @markm:

    If you are to do harm and there are three people in your way, one has a hog leg strapped to him….which would you try to take out first?.

    Ah, but maybe he won’t try to do harm in the first place once he see the gun on your hip? If guns are actually a deterrent, then the effect should be strongest if they are openly displayed. A gun concealed in your front pocket, after all, isn’t deterring anyone (though it might get you a few admiring glances from some of the men and women you pass by).

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 0

  105. markm says:

    @john personna:

    I was getting hung up on “shouldn’t we first“

    I understand we have a range of folks that fight crime(s) but it’s obvious they are losing the battle…particularly in inner cities. If there was a national push to break the gangs up as there was back in the 90’s, we would see large immediate results on multiple levels.

    I know we can do more than one thing….but it’s counter intuitive to me to dabble around the fringes without putting a larger effort into bringing down large pools of criminals.

    It would seem to me that a large drop in criminal activity in LA, Chicago, Detroit and Philly alone would take thousands of unregistered weapons off the streets….this would ripple from coast to coast. That would be a big ‘get’.

    I hope I am wrong, but I just don’t see more than statistical noise (at best) coming from the EO’s and proposed gun legislation.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  106. Rafer Janders says:

    @markm:

    I note that you didn’t answer the question.

    I answered it in a separate post above. I can only type so fast….

    It is an undeniable deterrent when the criminal doesn’t know who is armed.

    But far more of a deterrent when the criminals actually see lots of armed people, no? After all, who are you more likely to try to mug: the seemingly unarmed man walking down the street or the man with a pistol holstered to his hip walking down the street?

    Gun advocates are caught in a bit of a bind, here: they want to argue that guns are deterrents. However, most also want to hide their guns and don’t want to openly carry, because they sense, rightly, that support for guns from the general populace would plummet if those people literally had guns shoved under their noses every day. So they have to argue, simultaneously, that guns are a deterrent to crime, while simultaneously arguing that the open display of guns invites more crime.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 0

  107. markm says:

    @Rafer Janders:

    A gun concealed in your front pocket, after all, isn’t deterring anyone (though it might get you a few admiring glances from some of the men and women you pass by).

    You missed the part about the printing?. You can’t tell it’s in my pocket.

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  108. stonetools says:

    @john personna:

    I guess Mikey that the “rationalist” argument for incremental change is that AR-15s with large capacity magazines are more like tommy guns than they are like granddad’s deer rifle.

    I’m tired of the argument that AR15s and similar weapons are just ” hunting rifles.” They’re not.

    Check out this video

    is there really much of a difference between the rate of fire there and that of a sub machine gun?

    One commenter on Daily Kos said that he is not a skilled shooter but he was able to empty a 10 round magazine in 2.5 seconds.
    Someone with an assault weapon and a 100 round drum can put 100 rounds into a crowd in -well, do the math.
    There are really three rational solutions here-either :
    1.bring these weapons under the Miller Act
    2. allow only those with a special license to buy them.
    3. Ban high capacity magazines.

    I would prefer 2, but I’ll settle for 3.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

  109. Rafer Janders says:

    @markm:

    It would seem to me that a large drop in criminal activity in LA, Chicago, Detroit and Philly alone would take thousands of unregistered weapons off the streets….this would ripple from coast to coast. That would be a big ‘get’.

    Does it seem that way to you? Congratulations, it also seems that way to EVERY SINGLE COP AND FEDERAL AND STATE PROSECUTOR already working do this. Yes indeed, reducing the number of criminals will indeed reduce the amount of criminal activity. That is a genius-level observation.

    It also seems to me, though, that taking thousands of unregistered weapons off the streets would cause a large drop in criminal activity in LA, Chicago, Detroit and Philly alone….this would ripple from coast to coast. That would be a big ‘get’.

    If the solution to gun crime is “please first solve the problem of gang activity that law enforcement has been working to solve for the last hundred years with only limited success”, well, no. That’s just frantic handwaving to distract from the problem.

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  110. @markm:

    “It is an undeniable deterrent when the criminal doesn’t know who is armed.”

    Sorry, Mark, but that’s BS.

    Here’s what I would do if I were a criminal. Assume everyone is armed….and get a bigger gun and more body armor. You’re not deterring anything. You’re actually inviting ever greater levels of destruction.

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  111. stonetools says:

    @markm:

    For that case, the coach gun would be ideal in that you would have to make an effort to miss the target….but would be a pain for transport.

    Sawed off shotguns are “banned” under the Miller Act. There’s a reason for that.

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  112. Rafer Janders says:

    @markm:

    You missed the part about the printing?.

    You missed the joke?

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  113. markm says:

    @Rafer Janders:

    But far more of a deterrent when the criminals actually see lots of armed people, no? After all, who are you more likely to try to mug: the seemingly unarmed man walking down the street or the man with a pistol holstered to his hip walking down the street?

    With concealed carry laws, you don’t know who is and is not carrying. As a criminal in a concealed carry state, what price are you willing to pay to try and mug someone?.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 1

  114. markm says:

    @Rafer Janders:

    You missed the joke?

    I took it as a joke….but didn’t know if you were joking.

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  115. wr says:

    @James Pearce (Formerly Known as Herb): Why the name change? I liked Herb…

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

  116. markm says:

    @stonetools:

    Sawed off shotguns are “banned” under the Miller Act. There’s a reason for that.

    You can go to Gander Mountain, Cabela’s….any gun shop and purchase a coach gun (I was looking at one just last week). I think the rules are the barrel lenght cannot be shorter than 18 inches….and/or there is an overall weapon lenght it cannot be shorter than.

    That said, a law abiding type such as myself and purchast a tax stamp from the ATF and get whatever I want (and there are some local ordinances in there as well).

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  117. Mikey says:

    @stonetools:

    I’m tired of the argument that AR15s and similar weapons are just ” hunting rifles.” They’re not.

    Just to make sure you’re clear on my position–I don’t consider them “hunting rifles” either. They’re identical in form, and identical but for one aspect in function, to military weapons. I agree with John P. that they are much closer to “tommy guns” than to deer rifles.

    (Commented because my name was in what you were responding to.)

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  118. wr says:

    @markm: “but i’m saying do away with the gangs and the guns go away. The drugs go away. Crime in general drops”

    You think we have drugs because there are gangs who want to sell them?

    You might want to check up on a couple of basic economic principles. Start with the one called “supply and demand.”

    If you get rid of the gangs, then someone else moves in to sell the drugs.

    If you get rid of the drug laws, and thus the huge profits, the gangs go away.

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  119. markm says:

    @stonetools:

    Sawed off shotguns are “banned” under the Miller Act. There’s a reason for that.

    Add to that…..silencers are illegal as well. But, with a tax stamp from the ATF….guess what I can legally purchase?.

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  120. john personna says:

    I was visiting the hospital last month. As I walked in a young woman in uniform walked out. I looked at the huge pistol on her hip and thought “that’s a big gun for a little lady.” As I was amusing myself thus, she widened her distance from me.

    My noticing her gun increased her danger.

    Sad, but yes.

    Maybe some of you think that with open carry fewer would? Perhaps, but open carry has a whole other set of risks.

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  121. stonetools says:

    @Rafer Janders:

    That’s the thing: I want to know. I don’t think you should be able to hide it from your fellow citizens. If you’re not intending to use that gun in a stick-up, or to murder someone, why are you hiding it? Be out, loud and proud. Own it.

    Completely agree here. I am in favor of only open carry too. I want to know that law abiding owners like Mark M are carrying, so I can avoid them in case they get angry or drunk and decide to become ” not law abiding.”

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  122. markm says:

    @wr:

    I’m just talking about the benefits in relation to unregistered weapons. I think a ‘war on drugs’ discussion needs to be seperate.

    But, you do bring up a great and related point about what happens when you attempt to ban or make something illegal.

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  123. Rafer Janders says:

    @markm:

    With concealed carry laws, you don’t know who is and is not carrying.

    Therefore, as a rational man, I will assume for safety’s sake that everyone is carrying, and simply shoot first. If don”t know who is and who isn’t carrying, it will have no deterrent effect on me.

    As a criminal in a concealed carry state, what price are you willing to pay to try and mug someone?.

    Same as most other violent criminals, the constant possiblity of death and/or imprisonment.

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  124. john personna says:

    @stonetools:

    Open carry means anyone in line at McDonalds must maintain constant situation awareness, and be ready to use lethal force against the guy one line over who is about to make a grab.

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  125. john personna says:

    Some high number of women carry now, concealed in their purses.

    Making them open carry just means making guns easily available to large male felons.

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  126. stonetools says:

    @markm:

    Add to that…..silencers are illegal as well. But, with a tax stamp from the ATF….guess what I can legally purchase?.

    Its very difficult to legally purchase either a short barreled shotgun or silencer. And I’m fine with that.

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  127. @wr:

    “Why the name change? I liked Herb… “

    And I still do. (Doh!)

    I’ve been thinking about abandoning the nom de guerre for a while. I come here everyday practically and have been posting as “Herb” for years. I think I’m just finally embracing the end of the pseudonymous web.

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  128. stonetools says:

    @john personna:

    Open carry means anyone in line at McDonalds must maintain constant situation awareness, and be ready to use lethal force against the guy one line over who is about to make a grab.

    In open carry states, there is a big battle between open carry proponents and the business community, because, strangely enough, few people want to go into commercial establishments where there are people openly carrying guns, so business owners want to bar open carriers.

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  129. john personna says:

    @stonetools:

    Well, if your ultimate goal is to reduce carry, I think the way to do that is to increase requirements for carry, rather than to go to open first.

    Three shooting courses (basic safety, basic operation, self-protection), a shooting/safety test, and a six month waiting period? Yearly shooting/safety tests?

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  130. stonetools says:

    @Rafer Janders:

    The reason why MarkM doesn’t want to be forced to open carry is simple, really. He wants to continue to go to places where there are women and small children. Most women and families with small children don’t cotton to gun owners’ earnest arguments about how really, ” An armed society is a polite society” .

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  131. Rob in CT says:

    I don’t really get the whole “go after the gangs first” thing. We already do. And actually, since violent crime rates have been falling, something has been working. But there’s more to be done. I’m sure we’ll keep trying to battle the gangs. Ideally, I’d like to see drug decriminalization (for “harder” drugs) and outright legalization/regulation (pot, and some other softer drugs) in the hope that would help undercut the gangs. But you know, trying to disarm the gangs might be a good idea too.

    I’m all for ideas as to how to do that w/o disarming Bob the Farmer or whoever.

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  132. Rafer Janders says:

    @john personna:

    Open carry means anyone in line at McDonalds must maintain constant situation awareness, and be ready to use lethal force against the guy one line over who is about to make a grab.

    I’d argue that if they’re not ready to do so anyway, they shouldn’t be carrying a gun in the first place. If you can’t protect your gun, don’t carry a gun. To quote Ben Parker, with great power comes great responsibility.

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  133. markm says:

    @stonetools:

    Its very difficult to legally purchase either a short barreled shotgun or silencer. And I’m fine with that.

    Nnnnno….no it’s not. It’s very easy. It’s just a function of time for all the background checks and a couple hundred dollar tax stamp.

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  134. john personna says:

    @Rafer Janders:

    Sorry, no.

    You’ve gone the wrong direction here, and are calling for increased risks to public safety as a political gambit.

    You think “if we make carry unsafe and ridiculous, no one will do it.”

    But if you get exactly what you ask for, and people carry anyway, we will be less safe. All of us.

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  135. stonetools says:

    @john personna:

    All of this sounds great but in reality, the gun lobby fiercely opposes increasing requirements for carry.
    In Florida, I think, you get a CCW permit after listening to a three hour lecture. That’s how you get George Zimmermans, unfortunately.

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  136. Rafer Janders says:

    @stonetools:

    That’s my point. The public only tolerates guns to the extent they do because the problem is, to a large degree, hidden. If the guns were in plain sight, and everyone was forced to see and confront them on a daily basis, then the public — especially women and mothers with children — would become more vocal in their resistance.

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  137. markm says:

    @stonetools:

    The reason why MarkM doesn’t want to be forced to open carry is simple, really. He wants to continue to go to places where there are women and small children.

    Your rubbish spewer is strainin’.

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  138. john personna says:

    @stonetools:

    As I was just saying to Rafer, you are explicitly calling for something less safe there … for markm to to to where there are women and children, while exposing a weapon to the public (including those same kids).

    I guess if markm stoops to help one kid, and another grabs the gun, you’ll have made your point.

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  139. Rafer Janders says:

    @john personna:

    I’m not sure how hiding the risk is decreasing the risk. I’m serious that I want to know which of the people next to me is and isn’t carrying a gun, so that I can remove myself from the vicinity of those with guns. I’m partly making a political point, but also partly a safety one: I don’t understand why someone should be able to carry a deadly weapon in secret, thereby increasing the risk to all those around him, without having to give everyone appropriate warning. If I get into an argument on the street with a guy, I want to know if he has a gun or not before it’s too late.

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  140. john personna says:

    (You may not like the guns you cannot see, but no one who did not pass the checks and tests is grabbing the gun you cannot see. That’s really the bottom line. Concealing the gun hides it from people under treatment for mental illness, etc.)

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 2

  141. stonetools says:

    @Rob in CT:

    I don’t really get the whole “go after the gangs first” thing.

    Its a shiny object, like “Lets reform the mental health system first”, “Lets fully enforce all the laws on the books first, ” etc.

    The gun lobby is pointing to one shiny object after another in trying to avoid new gun regulation.
    If you ask the gun lobby folks “How do you go after gang activity”, they have no idea apart from “Let’s lock ‘em all up-forever.”

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 0

  142. john personna says:

    @Rafer Janders:

    Are you faking?

    People who open carry now, security guards and etc., follow special rules.

    They do not allow people within a safe zone.

    If you come within 3-4 feet they’ll turn to face you, place one hand on their hilt, and ask if they can help you.

    You want to send a bunch of people who are fearful (why else carry?) with those rules?

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  143. stonetools says:

    @markm:

    Your rubbish spewer is strainin’.

    Sure. Carry your gun openly into a bar on Ladies Night and see how much play you get.You’ll get lots of admiring looks from guys, though.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

  144. Tony W says:

    @Mikey:

    because we allow people to have a great many things that are dangerous and pose a danger to the public if misused

    Yeah, like lawn darts!

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  145. markm says:

    @stonetools:

    Sure. Carry your gun openly into a bar

    Golly, that sounds like a brilliant idea.

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  146. Rafer Janders says:

    @john personna:

    You want to send a bunch of people who are fearful (why else carry?) with those rules?

    I think that many people who now carry concealed would no longer carry if they had to do so openly, so that would reduce the number of guns overall. And those who still chose to carry even under those restrictions would tend to be fearful, yes, but they would be visible to everyone else. Businesses could choose not to let them in. Friends could choose not to stand near them. They’d have to directly bear the burden of their behavior, rather than imposing the costs of their behavior on others.

    If they couldn’t take the strain, then some of them would also stop carrying. I’d rather have an open, identifed danger than a hidden, amorphous one.

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  147. stonetools says:

    @john personna:

    You want to send a bunch of people who are fearful (why else carry?) with those rules?

    I think what Rafer is trying to say is that if all CCW holders were required to carry openly, there would be a backlash against allowing people to carry guns in public. He’s right about that, IMO. The business retail community in particular would be dead set against it.

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  148. stonetools says:

    @markm:

    Golly, that sounds like a brilliant idea.

    And in Tennessee, Ohio and several Southern states, you can carry guns into bars. Ain’t America wonderful?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

  149. john personna says:

    @stonetools:

    Oh I get that you guys have a motive to reduce carry.

    I just disagree with the false flag argument for open carry.

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  150. john personna says:

    The order for public safety would be:

    1. less carry
    2. same carry but concealed
    3. same carry but open

    It is obviously a tactic to move from 2 to 3 in hopes of getting to 1

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  151. Rafer Janders says:

    @john personna:

    People who open carry now, security guards and etc., follow special rules.
    They do not allow people within a safe zone. If you come within 3-4 feet they’ll turn to face you,

    Well, yes and no. Yes in theory, no in practice. I’ve stood within inches of armed NYC cops on the street thousands of times, my hands at my side hanging right next to their guns. There isn’t a cop in this city who can maintain a 3-4 foot safe zone from pedestrians.

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  152. john personna says:

    @Rafer Janders:

    Not all of those police holders open as easily or in the way you expect.

    Are you going to require locking holsters for the public?

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  153. Rafer Janders says:

    @john personna:

    I just disagree with the false flag argument for open carry.

    Like I said above, it’s not just false flag. I think that I and other citizens have a right to know who’s endangering us by carrying guns so that we can get the hell away from them.

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  154. john personna says:

    Regardless it’s stupid, you are making guns into eye candy as a way to reduce carry.

    A more honest argument would be to call for reduced carry, and higher requirements.

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  155. Rafer Janders says:

    @john personna:

    A more honest argument would be to call for reduced carry, and higher requirements.

    Honestly, I want no carry. I don’t think people need to carry handguns around. So if I’m getting my wish list, that’s what I want.

    But in the absence of no carry, I want open carry rather than concealed carry. If the guy drinking next to me at the bar has a gun, I want to know it so that I can walk away and move my business to another bar, rather than having the danger hidden.

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  156. markm says:

    @Rafer Janders:

    Sorry, I missed this (and a few others)

    Same as most other violent criminals, the constant possiblity of death and/or imprisonment.

    So you are saying that the threat of varying degrees of penalty…even the ultimate penalty…are not a deterrent?. Well, I guess if you are willing to die for a wallet/purse then current or more stringent laws seem silly don’t they?.

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  157. Rafer Janders says:

    @john personna:

    Are you going to require locking holsters for the public?

    Obviously, yes. We don’t need any quick-draw artists out on the street.

    But the argument now seems to have shifted from “no open carry because it’s too easy to take guns away” to “it’s actually pretty hard to take guns out of properly designed holsters.” So fine, let’s, as a condition of carry, require the gun owner to buy a locking holster. That would help remove some of the danger.

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  158. stonetools says:

    @john personna:

    Are you going to require locking holsters for the public?

    Sounds good to me. Better, of course, is few people carrying at all.

    In Oregon, two people walked around in public and carried AR 15s on shoulder straps. Luckily for them, they didn’t try it in the South Side Of Chicago.

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  159. markm says:

    @Rafer Janders:

    Honestly, I want no carry.

    …and I want no crime. Looks like we are both shit out of luck.

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  160. Rafer Janders says:

    @markm:

    So you are saying that the threat of varying degrees of penalty…even the ultimate penalty…are not a deterrent?.

    They are or aren’t, depending on the individual. But I don’t think it’s too insightful to say that criminals aren’t the most deterrable people, since if they were, they wouldn’t be criminals.

    Well, I guess if you are willing to die for a wallet/purse then current or more stringent laws seem silly don’t they?.

    Not at all, since regulations would still reduce the amount of guns in the general populace, and thereby reduce the amount of guns available to criminals.

    As I’ve noted before, every other country on earth has crime and criminals, but we rank far, far ahead in the number of gun deaths. The only thing distinguishing American criminals from Canadian or British or Hong Kong or Australian or Italian etc. criminals is easy access to guns. If stringent laws didn’t work, then you’d expect criminals in all those other countries to use guns at the same rate as American criminals. But they don’t, because there aren’t as many guns around for them to get their hands on.

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  161. markm says:

    Has anyone here been to a place where open carry is allowed?.

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  162. Rafer Janders says:

    @markm:

    …and I want no crime. Looks like we are both shit out of luck.

    Yes, but unlike your “know crime”, I know that my “no carry” is actually possible, because most every other advanced country on earth manages it. There’s no society without crime. There are plenty of societies without easily available guns.

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  163. stonetools says:

    @Rafer Janders:

    But in the absence of no carry, I want open carry rather than concealed carry. If the guy drinking next to me at the bar has a gun, I want to know it so that I can walk away and move my business to another bar, rather than having the danger hidden.

    Agree there. MarkM may be a lovely guy. But if I get into a heated discussion with him, I want to know if he has “Second Amendment” ways of winning the argument. I’m sure , on reflection, you would agree with me there too.

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  164. Rafer Janders says:

    @stonetools:

    In Oregon, two people walked around in public and carried AR 15s on shoulder straps. Luckily for them, they didn’t try it in the South Side Of Chicago.

    Again, I remain firmly convinced that if those two guys were Arabs, or black guys in hoodies, that a lot of the same people now championing gun rights would demand that something, anything! be done about this. (Present company of course excluded).

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  165. Rafer Janders says:

    @markm:

    Has anyone here been to a place where open carry is allowed?.

    Nevada, Arizona, New Mexico, Oklahoma, Texas, Virginia. So yes.

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  166. john personna says:

    @Rafer Janders:

    So the woman beaten near death by her psycho ex-husband should have the choices of open carry or no carry?

    Who the hell is upvoting this idea? Someone who wants no female carry?

    I have no problem with reduced carry, but there are corner cases where it is justified, and in those cases we are safer with concealment.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 1

  167. john personna says:

    @markm:

    I see open carry when I hike the California mountains. It doesn’t bother me. I’d rather carry a fly rod, myself.

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  168. markm says:

    @Rafer Janders:

    They are or aren’t, depending on the individual. But I don’t think it’s too insightful to say that criminals aren’t the most deterrable people, since if they were, they wouldn’t be criminals.

    But at the same time, it’s safe to say that if the criminal wanted to commit a crime, he will take the path of least resistance.

    Not at all, since regulations would still reduce the amount of guns in the general populace, and thereby reduce the amount of guns available to criminals.

    Chicago is not a good example of this.

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  169. markm says:

    @Rafer Janders:

    And how long have they had open carry?.

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  170. stonetools says:

    @Rafer Janders:

    Again, I remain firmly convinced that if those two guys were Arabs, or black guys in hoodies, that a lot of the same people now championing gun rights would demand that something, anything! be done about this. (Present company of course excluded).

    I’m not sure they wouldn’t have been shot by the police. Agree with you that the fervor for open carry would go way down if the brown skinned people started carrying around assault weapons openly.

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  171. Rafer Janders says:

    @john personna:

    So the woman beaten near death by her psycho ex-husband should have the choices of open carry or no carry?

    But like matt, you seem to be justifying an increased danger to the general public by a corner case where concealed carry might be beneficial. I’m not saying she couldn’t have a gun at home to protect herself, but at home open versus concealed is irrelevant. But is this on the street? Then I don’t want her shooting at her ex-husband and hitting bystanders. Is she carrying in her purse? Then how will she have time to get it out and wield it before he surprises her?

    As we’ve all noted before, we can all think of several cases where a gun could have saved someone’s life. But that doesn’t negate the fact that, overall, more guns make us less rather than more safe.

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  172. Rafer Janders says:

    @markm:

    And how long have they had open carry?.

    I have no idea, but if you’re interested to know, I can recommend Google.com.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

  173. markm says:

    @john personna:

    I’d rather carry a fly rod, myself.

    You never know when a salvelinus fontinalis will go postal……but i’d bet you could conceal one of these: https://www.ronco.com/products/pocket-fisherman.html

    (….don’t ever admit it though)

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  174. Rafer Janders says:

    @markm:

    Chicago is not a good example of this.

    How on earth would you know? We’d have to remove all gun restrictions from Chicago for several years, count the number of gun deaths then occurring, and compare that to the number of gun deaths under a more restrictive regime, in order to get an accurate comparison. But just because a law doesn’t work perfectly doesn’t mean it doesn’t work.

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  175. Moosebreath says:

    @john personna:

    “So the woman beaten near death by her psycho ex-husband should have the choices of open carry or no carry?

    Who the hell is upvoting this idea? Someone who wants no female carry?”

    Please explain why women can’t carry openly. I am reasonably sure that I can find a gun holster which can be worn by a woman in a few seconds of searhing the intertubes.

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  176. markm says:

    @Rafer Janders:

    I’m just wondering how many businesses have been shuttered due to people walking through the doors wearing a pistol.

    I’ve one been one place that had open carry and from the breif time I was there….it didn’t seem to be a problem for businesses (again, I was only there for a short time).

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  177. stonetools says:

    @markm:

    Chicago is not a good example of this.

    Actually , it is a good example of this. There is no legitimate authority, anywhere, that doesn’t think the gun homicide rate in Chicago would be higher if guns were more freely available.
    Also too , one thing you will NEVER hear the NRA say is that we would be safer if more minority youth had guns .

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  178. markm says:

    @Rafer Janders:

    But just because a law doesn’t work perfectly

    It’s not a single law or regulation….Chicago is thick on gun laws/regs. I know you cannot stop every crime but there are multiple murders per day there. Whatever they are doing there isn’t close to working perftectly.

    (I am not picking on Chicago….I am confident Detroit, LA, etc. is similar in murders….Chicago is just front and center right now.)

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  179. Moosebreath says:

    @Moosebreath:

    This being a good example of on open carry holster designed for women.

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  180. markm says:

    @stonetools:

    Actually , it is a good example of this. There is no legitimate authority, anywhere, that doesn’t think the gun homicide rate in Chicago would be higher if guns were more freely available.

    A good example of this is having a city with the strictest gun laws/regulations being the same city with the highest murder rate?????. Woof.

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  181. Rafer Janders says:

    @markm:

    Whatever they are doing there isn’t close to working perftectly.

    Again, so what? The one thing we know would NOT help is make guns more freely available to the gangs and other criminals. Ask any prosecutor, cop or academic crime expert and they’ll tell you the same.

    This is really a very silly argument to be making.

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  182. markm says:

    @Moosebreath:

    About one fourth(ish) of the people at the gun counter are women anymore (around here anyways).

    I don’t know the stats on how many women carry but I would bet many would be surprised.

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  183. Rafer Janders says:

    @markm:

    You are aware that Chicago is not a walled, quarantined island, right, and that criminals routinely buy guns in states with lax gun laws, such as Virginia, Indiana, Oklahoma, etc. and just drive them to Chicago in the trunks of their cars? A lot of the gun murders in Chicago aren’t a sign that Chicago doesn’t practice gun control, but that other states don’t. Chicago just suffers the price.

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  184. Rafer Janders says:

    @john personna:

    So the woman beaten near death by her psycho ex-husband should have the choices of open carry or no carry?

    Well, why can’t she open carry? You’d think her psycho ex-husband seeing she had a gun would deter him from attacking her in the first place.

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  185. Moosebreath says:

    @markm:

    I am not surprised. @john personna: is making the argument that no concealed carry means women won’t carry. I have no idea why he thinks that, so I asked.

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  186. markm says:

    @Rafer Janders:

    Again, so what? The one thing we know would NOT help is make guns more freely available to the gangs and other criminals.

    I agree….I have not argued otherwise. In fact, I mentioned a couple times now that we should go after the criminals/gangs circulating the guns rather than diddling around with laws/regs that will yield statistical noise for results.

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  187. stonetools says:

    @john personna:

    I see open carry when I hike the California mountains. It doesn’t bother me. I’d rather carry a fly rod, myself.

    There may be a rural/urban divide here. I’m OK with open carry in the wide open spaces. I can see why a hunter, rancher, or hiker might need a gun.
    I don’t see a reason to carry, either openly or not, in a school, bar, theater, or restaurant. And if someone is carrying a gun in that setting, I want to know. My default is NOT to trust a gun owner who is not the police-and frankly, I don’t trust the police completely, either.

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  188. markm says:

    @Rafer Janders:

    You are aware that Chicago is not a walled, quarantined island, right, and that criminals routinely buy guns in states with lax gun laws, such as Virginia, Indiana, Oklahoma, etc. and just drive them to Chicago in the trunks of their cars?

    Yes….that is why I wrote this earlier:

    It would seem to me that a large drop in criminal activity in LA, Chicago, Detroit and Philly alone would take thousands of unregistered weapons off the streets….this would ripple from coast to coast. That would be a big ‘get’.

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  189. markm says:

    @stonetools:

    My default is NOT to trust a gun owner

    To each his own….but your default…is it gun owners in general or gun owners that carry???.
    Also, why is this?.

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  190. Rob in CT says:

    And how, exactly, do you get that large drop (beyond the ongoing multi-decade drop in violent crime, which is great but still leaves us with high levels)?

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  191. Rafer Janders says:

    @markm:

    In fact, I mentioned a couple times now that we should go after the criminals/gangs circulating the guns rather than diddling around with laws/regs that will yield statistical noise for results.

    Which we already do. Really, saying “let’s go after the criminals!” is just stupid — there’s no one who thinks we shouldn’t go after the criminals. We already go after the criminals. And part of the way we go after the criminals is by reducing their access to guns.

    There’s no “rather than” here — the fact that legislators in DC and the statehouses will debate and pass gun control will in no way inhibit cops and prosecutors on the ground from doing what they are already doing in going after gangsters. We can walk and chew gum at the same time.

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  192. Rafer Janders says:

    @markm:

    I understand we have a range of folks that fight crime(s) but it’s obvious they are losing the battle…particularly in inner cities.

    Actually, we are winning the battle. Rates of violent crime have been dropping for decades, particularly in inner cities. Why do you think it’s getting worse when all available evidence shows it’s getting better?

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  193. Moosebreath says:

    @markm:

    I’m not stonetools, but my response to your questions is that I don’t trust people who are carrying guns (other than the police), because I believe that they are far more likely to harm someone (including themselves) by accident or by escalating a confrontation which should be resolved without violence because they know that they are carrying than need to use them for situations that may arise in ordinary day-to-day life. And like stonetools, I would prefer to know who is carrying guns around me, and to avoid them if possible.

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  194. stonetools says:

    @markm:

    I agree….I have not argued otherwise. In fact, I mentioned a couple times now that we should go after the criminals/gangs circulating the guns rather than diddling around with laws/regs that will yield statistical noise for results.

    Maybe because you are a rural guy and such , you don’t understand the whole urban thingy, but I can assure you that they are going after the gangs.
    you might want to try Google and you know, find stuff out. Here’s one article. Excerpt:

    One puzzle is that gun violence has remained high in Chicago while the incidence of other crimes has fallen.

    “Our struggle is with violence and particularly gang violence and more specifically gun violence,” Chicago Police Superintendent Garry F. McCarthy told WBEZ radio this week. He cited free-flowing weaponry on Chicago’s streets as a major challenge for the 12,500 members of the city’s police force. Seizing guns, he said, offers limited benefit, with Chicago already claiming guns at a rate three times greater than Los Angeles and nine times higher than New York.

    “We’re in a position where we’re drinking from a fire hose,” said McCarthy, who also served in Newark and New York City. “Guns are bought legally and transferred illegally, and those are the guns that are ending up killing people here.”

    Emanuel called this week for a ban on assault weapons. McCarthy cautioned against expecting too much from that one step. Among other measures, he favors longer sentences for illegal firearms possession and emphasizes the need to limit large ammunition magazines.

    You might want to meditate on the first sentence. Crime has fallen; Gun violence has risen. According to the “more guns, more safety” crowd, that shouldn’t happen.

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  195. markm says:

    @Rafer Janders:

    Which we already do. Really, saying “let’s go after the criminals!” is just stupid — there’s no one who thinks we shouldn’t go after the criminals. We already go after the criminals. And part of the way we go after the criminals is by reducing their access to guns.

    In the recent talks in DC, I didn’t see anything that gives further funding to round up the known criminals in these known high crime rate areas. I also didn’t see funding to strengthen the prison system. We can continue the half assed approach and we will continue to get half assed results……and more laws/regs with little results.

    There’s no “rather than” here — the fact that legislators in DC and the statehouses will debate and pass gun control will in no way inhibit cops and prosecutors on the ground from doing what they are already doing in going after gangsters. We can walk and chew gum at the same time.

    Which isn’t strengthening their ability to do so either. In fact, wasn’t it a year or so ago that Chicago shuttered a prison or two in a budget shuffling scheme?.

    What needs to be done clearly isn’t being done. What is being done does nothing to curtail the violence. Whatever Chicago is doing clearly doesn’t work.

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  196. Rafer Janders says:

    @markm:

    In fact, I mentioned a couple times now that we should go after the criminals/gangs circulating the guns

    I’ll bite…what, exactly, do you think we should be doing that we are not doing already?

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  197. markm says:

    @stonetools:

    “Guns are bought legally and transferred illegally, and those are the guns that are ending up killing people here.”

    Again….remove the demand. Crush the gangs and the demand drops dramatically.

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  198. Rafer Janders says:

    @markm:

    In the recent talks in DC, I didn’t see anything that gives further funding to round up the known criminals in these known high crime rate areas.

    What do you mean “round up”? We already arrest people when we suspect they’ve committed crimes. Are you suggesting that the Chicago police aren’t arresting suspected criminals??

    I also didn’t see funding to strengthen the prison system.

    People only enter the prison system after they’ve already been convicted of a crime and sentenced, first, so that doesn’t really affect street crime directly. Second, what do you mean by “strengthening” the prison system, and how would this affect street crime?

    What needs to be done clearly isn’t being done.

    Again, you’re very, very vague on what exactly needs to be done that you think is not being done. Be specific. Show your work.

    What is being done does nothing to curtail the violence. Whatever Chicago is doing clearly doesn’t work.

    Sorry, begging the conclusion. Yes, there were 500 murders in Chicago, but you don’t know that in the absence of police efforts and gun control that there wouldn’t have been 1000 murders instead. It’s quite simply false — a lie, actually — to say that what is being done does “nothing” to curtail the violence.

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  199. Rafer Janders says:

    @markm:

    Crush the gangs and the demand drops dramatically.

    How? How would one “crush the gangs”?

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  200. stonetools says:

    @Moosebreath:

    And like stonetools, I would prefer to know who is carrying guns around me, and to avoid them if possible.

    Amen. Also too, my chances of getting shot are zero if there are no guns around me; they go up if some one brings a gun into a room. The gun carrier may be an idiot like Plaxico Burgess who goes dancing in a club with a loaded gun and accidentally discharges it. I don’t want to get shot, either intentionally or accidentally, thank you.

    Also check out Kagro X Twitter for many examples of “responsible ” gun owners accidentally discharging their guns, losing their guns, etc.

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  201. markm says:

    @Rafer Janders:

    I’ll bite…what, exactly, do you think we should be doing that we are not doing already?

    I think, if you are correct and they are successful doing what they are doing, then do it on a much larger scale AND make sure there is a place to put them.

    Like I said earlier, whatever was done back in the 90’s seemed to work. I remember watching large sweeps on the news…there would be hundreds of arrests at a time.

    If you can identify that ‘gangs’ are committing these crimes, then there should be no reason a large well funded sweep couldn’t take them down. Go directly to the source.

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  202. stonetools says:

    @Rafer Janders:

    How? How would one “crush the gangs”?

    Why, by scattering magic gang crusher pixie dust on Chicago, of course.

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  203. Rafer Janders says:

    @markm:

    Like I said earlier, whatever was done back in the 90′s seemed to work. I remember watching large sweeps on the news…there would be hundreds of arrests at a time.

    Here’s the homicide rate in Chicago from the 1990s through now. It seems that what we’re doing now is actually working better than what we did in the 90s, since the rate is on a downward trend (from a high of 943 in 1992 to a low of 435 in 2011).

    1990: 851
    1991: 927
    1992: 943
    1993: 855
    1994: 931
    1995: 828
    1996: 796
    1997: 761
    1998: 704
    1999: 643
    2000: 633
    2001: 667
    2002: 656
    2003: 601
    2004: 453
    2005: 451
    2006: 471
    2007: 448
    2008: 513
    2009: 459
    2010: 436
    2011: 435
    2012: 506

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Crime_in_Chicago#Homicides_in_Chicago

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  204. Rafer Janders says:

    @markm:

    If you can identify that ‘gangs’ are committing these crimes, then there should be no reason a large well funded sweep couldn’t take them down. Go directly to the source.

    I’m curious as to why you seem to think, in spite of all available evidence, and multiple commenters here telling you otherwise, that police and prosecutors are not already engaged in a decades long effort to do just that. Do you really think that of all the millions of people involved in law enforcement, you’re the first one to think of the brilliant idea of “oh, we should just take ‘em down!”

    It’s, uh, not that simple. We live in a democracy under the rule of law, and you can’t just “sweep” people up and lock ‘em up. You actually have to identify discrete crimes they’ve committed, identify the suspects, solve the crime, find and arrest the suspects, charge them with those crimes, find evidence and witnesses, take them to court, prove the case beyond a reasonable doubt, etc.

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  205. Rafer Janders says:

    @markm:

    I remember watching large sweeps on the news…there would be hundreds of arrests at a time.

    Security theatre.

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  206. stonetools says:

    Like I said earlier, whatever was done back in the 90′s seemed to work. I remember watching large sweeps on the news…there would be hundreds of arrests at a time.

    If you can identify that ‘gangs’ are committing these crimes, then there should be no reason a large well funded sweep couldn’t take them down. Go directly to the source.

    Typical gun enthusiast-Loves the Second Amendment, comfortable with the large scale violation of the rest of the Bill of Rights.
    Skipping over that, do you think the Chicago authorities aren’t arresting gang members who commit crimes ? Gee, why didn’t they think of that?

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  207. markm says:

    @Rafer Janders:

    What do you mean “round up”? We already arrest people when we suspect they’ve committed crimes. Are you suggesting that the Chicago police aren’t arresting suspected criminals??

    If 500+ murders per year by gang members is adequate….then they are doing a fine job.

    People only enter the prison system after they’ve already been convicted of a crime and sentenced

    As I said above, their ‘prison system’ has been greatly reduced due to budgetary reasons. If you greatly increased the police force and bring back the sweeps, you need a place to put them.

    Again, you’re very, very vague on what exactly needs to be done that you think is not being done. Be specific. Show your work.

    How about the large scale gang sweeps similar to what was done in the 90’s?. I have not heard of one of those in years.

    Yes, there were 500 murders in Chicago, but you don’t know that in the absence of police efforts and gun control that there wouldn’t have been 1000 murders instead.

    Oh, I am confident that absent police alone the murders would have been more than 1,000. But 500 is a ghastly number and it is beyond me that when talking gun violence at the federal level(‘everything on the table’), not one plan was released directly dealing with gangs.

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  208. Rafer Janders says:

    But 500 is a ghastly number and it is beyond me that when talking gun violence at the federal level(‘everything on the table’), not one plan was released directly dealing with gangs.

    You are completely wrong about that. I know several DOJ prosecutors who do nothing but gang violence. There are multiple federal efforts to deal with gangs.

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  209. Rafer Janders says:

    @markm:

    How about the large scale gang sweeps similar to what was done in the 90′s?. I have not heard of one of those in years.

    A “sweep” is nothing more than security theatre. It looks good on the local news and impresses the rubes and yokels, but a “sweep” is nothing more than a large-scale arrest. But of course you can’t arrest people unless you have evidence that they’ve committed a crime, and once you arrest them, you have to try them. So if you arrest hundreds of people at once, you’ve just committed yourself to suddenly scheduling hundreds of trials at once, which is a nightmare, and severely overburdens the cops who have to testify and the judges and prosecutors who have to put on the trials, because they can’t be in hundreds of courtrooms.

    Large-scale sweeps are actually counterproductive that way; it’s far more efficient and effective to have daily, ongoing arrests.

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  210. Rafer Janders says:

    @markm:

    But 500 is a ghastly number

    Yes, but it’s better than the 900 plus numbers of the 90’s. And yet you seem to think things were better in the 90s’s than they are now, when the evidence is exactly to the contrary.

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  211. Rafer Janders says:

    Look, what this all comes down to is that when challenged to come up with what exactly you think we should be doing differently, you haven’t really been able to come up with anything more detailed than “arrest the criminals and lock them up.” Which….is what we’re already doing, and have been doing for decades and decades.

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  212. stonetools says:

    @Rafer Janders:

    So far as I know, the USA still has the highest incarceration rates of all industrialized countries. AS far as MarkM is concerned, that counts for nothing.

    The good thing about this discussion is that we have an insight into the mind of the rural/exurban voter. If you live in Buzzard Creek, Idaho (pop.500) and there are five bad guys who everyone knows, then you sweep them up and crime problem solved. You don’t understand that you can’t scale that up to Chicago (4M+ people).

    And of course, guns aren’t the problem, because lots of folks have guns for shooting deer, varmints, and such.In Chicago, of course, lots of people have guns but they use them for the primary purpose: killing people.

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  213. Rafer Janders says:

    @stonetools:

    If you live in Buzzard Creek, Idaho (pop.500) and there are five bad guys who everyone knows, then you sweep them up and crime problem solved. You don’t understand that you can’t scale that up to Chicago (4M+ people).

    It’s a very good point. When Markm wrote, for example, that “If you can identify that ‘gangs’ are committing these crimes, then there should be no reason a large well funded sweep couldn’t take them down”, he doesn’t seem to think through the next steps, which is that beyond identifying the gangs you also have to build an individual case against each specific individual gang member that you can prove beyond a reasonable doubt. “Sweeping up” is a meaningless phrase. Building cases is a long, hard slog that requires thousands of man-hours and dozens of people per case.

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  214. john personna says:

    @Moosebreath:

    Please explain why women can’t carry openly. I am reasonably sure that I can find a gun holster which can be worn by a woman in a few seconds of searhing the intertubes.

    The gun is an equalizer for lesser strength. When the gun is open, visible, it is more easily defeated by higher strength. The psycho ex-husband grabs the wife, gun-first.

    What a bizarre tangent. The focus should be on the assault rifles, something that has a political wedge behind it after Sandy Hook.

    Disarming women, not so much.

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  215. john personna says:

    @Rafer Janders:

    But like matt, you seem to be justifying an increased danger to the general public by a corner case where concealed carry might be beneficial.

    I thought someone might not be able to solve that one, but I didn’t think it would be you. I gave you more credit.

    Matt’s argument is that the corner case justifies arming the majority.

    My argument is that the corner case justifies arming only the corner case.

    Geez.

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  216. Moosebreath says:

    @john personna:

    The only one talking about disarming women (separate from a few folks who want to disarm all of humanity) is you.

    Having read your comment, I see no reason what that has to do with anything. If the psycho ex-husband is attacking his ex-wife and is significantly stronger than she is, she likely doesn’t have a chance to reach into her purse (or anywhere else the gun is concealed) to draw it.

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  217. john personna says:

    When a gun is in open carry, the carrier has to have the strength and training to retain it in any physical altercation.

    Police men and women are trained to fight and retain their gun. The are aided by locking holsters, and in some areas electronic gun locks.

    So … you nimrods think that the 98 pound woman in fear of here 215 ex, should just fight him for the gun, like a cop.

    Genius.

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  218. john personna says:

    @Moosebreath:

    I guess the difference between you and I is that I don’t feel comfortable making that decision for that woman.

    Think about that. 98 pound woman. Carry it where we can all see it, you say, or don’t carry at all.

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  219. john personna says:

    Or, the average 190 pound thug sees a 130 pound woman in open carry. Thug wants gun. What happens next?

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  220. stonetools says:

    @john personna:

    Your argument is an excellent argument for no female police officers. Also no male police officers that weigh less than say, 150 pounds.
    You might want to reconsider this line of argument.

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  221. stonetools says:

    @john personna:

    Or, the average 190 pound thug sees a 130 pound woman in open carry. Thug wants gun. What happens next?

    Thug advances on woman. Woman unholsters gun, draws a bead, and says, ” Step forward and see Jesus.”

    Thug backs off. What’s the problem?

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  222. john personna says:

    @stonetools:

    Do women less than 150 pounds make it past the physical strength tests? I know they’ve got to be strong.

    @stonetools:

    So who has the fantasy world now? You’ve set her up to be blindsided by a thug, or demanded her to have all that situation awareness, all the time, so that no thug gets behind her.

    Geez.

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  223. Moosebreath says:

    @john personna:

    “I guess the difference between you and I is that I don’t feel comfortable making that decision for that woman.”

    And I guess the difference is that I don’t feel comfortable with one person, male or female, making a decision about whether to impose the presence of a gun on the rest of us (with the attendant risks of accident and escalating a verbal dispute into a lethal one) without the rest of us knowing about it.

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  224. Moosebreath says:

    @john personna:

    “Police men and women are trained to fight and retain their gun. The are aided by locking holsters, and in some areas electronic gun locks.

    So … you nimrods think that the 98 pound woman in fear of here 215 ex, should just fight him for the gun, like a cop.”

    And the reason the 98 pound woman cannot have a locking holster is…? Or are you the sort of “nimrod” who thinks accidents don’t count for death statistics?

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  225. john personna says:

    @Moosebreath:

    The locking holster is not the complete solution.

    In order to serve its purpose it must allow the wearer to make a fast one-handed draw. Police are trained to do that. It is harder to make a side-pull release, or a twist and grab.

    But it is certainly predicated on the police man or woman subduing the attacker in short order, before they can work the holster.

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  226. john personna says:

    @Moosebreath:

    And I guess the difference is that I don’t feel comfortable with one person, male or female, making a decision about whether to impose the presence of a gun on the rest of us (with the attendant risks of accident and escalating a verbal dispute into a lethal one) without the rest of us knowing about it.

    Then you should go straight to outlawing carry, rather than this false flag route.

    As I’ve said I would support reduced carry, but not putting more guns in visible reach of the criminal and disturbed population.

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  227. Moosebreath says:

    @john personna:

    “Then you should go straight to outlawing carry, rather than this false flag route.”

    No — I recognize that reasonable people can differ on this, so I am not in favor of imposing my views on everyone. I just want to be able to walk away from someone who is carrying before an argument starts, and not be carried away afterwards and put in a hearse. If you want to take that risk every time you talk to a stranger in a bar, you are welcome to.

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  228. Moosebreath says:

    @john personna:

    “The locking holster is not the complete solution.”

    It depends upon what the problem is. It’s a great solution to the risks I am most concerned about. It enables people to know that there’s a chance that if they stay near a certain person, a shot may be fired, whether accidently or on purpose. I think these occur far more often than the risks you are concerned with.

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  229. john personna says:

    @Moosebreath:

    So do you normally stay to fight people without guns?

    Is this your argument for a civil society?

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  230. john personna says:

    @Moosebreath:

    Do you have any data that people doing licensed, legal, concealed carry are a significant source of current gun injuries or deaths?

    Or is this emotional?

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  231. john personna says:

    And again, explain why my route, increasing the difficulty of concealed carry is not better than switching to open?

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  232. Moosebreath says:

    @john personna:

    “So do you normally stay to fight people without guns?”

    I normally have discussions with people without guns. Sometimes, they turn into arguments, and even heated ones. To me that’s part of being in a civil society. When there’s a chance they can turn lethal, suddenly that’s not part of being in a civil society.

    Is that really so controversial that you need all these gymnastics to avoid admitting?

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  233. Moosebreath says:

    @john personna:

    “And again, explain why my route, increasing the difficulty of concealed carry is not better than switching to open?”

    It _may_ be better for the carrier (not admitting it). I believe it is much, much worse for the people around the carrier. And I very strongly believe that the people around the carrier have every right to know that the person sitting next to them has a chance of killing them, accidentally or in the heat of an argument, so they themselves can decide whether it is worth that risk.

    And I am absolutely dumbfounded that you seem unable to bring yourself to admit that the chance of harm to the people around the carrier count in any calculus of the benefits of concealed carry.

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  234. john personna says:

    @Moosebreath:

    I asked you about reducing carry, increasing the difficulty of carry.

    You said that was better for the carrier?

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  235. john personna says:

    @Moosebreath:

    And I am absolutely dumbfounded that you seem unable to bring yourself to admit that the chance of harm to the people around the carrier count in any calculus of the benefits of concealed carry.

    That’s probably because you’ve been skipping the reduction to carry all along.

    From way up top:

    Three shooting courses (basic safety, basic operation, self-protection), a shooting/safety test, and a six month waiting period? Yearly shooting/safety tests?

    Rather than that you’d have open carry, with no mention of increased training or testing.

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  236. john personna says:

    Again, I have been for reducing carry, increasing the hurtles to carry, all through this.

    I just think it stupid, dangerous, and a false flag campaign to make the FEW PEOPLE who do pass those hurtles to put their guns on display as fly paper.

    A Glock costs $600, and is way more of a magnet for a criminal than an iPhone.

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  237. Moosebreath says:

    @john personna:

    “You said that was better for the carrier?”

    No, try reading what I wrote again, and this time, read _all_ of the words I wrote (you know, including “may” and “not admitting it”)

    @john personna:

    “Rather than that you’d have open carry, with no mention of increased training or testing.”

    Yes. I’d rather know who to walk away from before the gun goes off.

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  238. john personna says:

    @Moosebreath:

    I read it again.

    You completely skipped that I am talking about reducing carry.

    You are making the argument that for same-carry, you’d rather see them, so you can know who to not get into an altercation with.

    Maybe you should avoid altercations? Or certain bars after 10pm?

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  239. Bob says:

    Pardon the intrusion, but I just wanted to say that I really appreciate that the conversation here is civil and respectful. Agree or disagree, make a point and defend that position — refreshing to “see” healthy discussion. Thanks

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  240. Moosebreath says:

    @john personna:

    “You are making the argument that for same-carry, you’d rather see them, so you can know who to not get into an altercation with.”

    Yes, I am. And you continue to focus only upon chance of harm to the carrier, and not the people around the carrier. Until you acknowledge that the people around the carrier can be harmed, too, this discussion has reached an end.

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  241. stonetools says:

    My last response was facetious. First of all, there is no complete solution. A woman carrying concealed is just as vulnerable to the sneak attack as the open carry , so I see no advantage there. I think open carry would serve a deterrent purpose as in this picture.(Wouldn’t want to try this one on, right?).
    I think you are rightly perturbed at the idea of women walking around with guns on their hips. That to me is a good thing. The authorities should be too, and they’ll be careful about issuing permits.
    I’m with Moosebreath and Rafe. I’d prefer no one carrying guns , but we’re here on Earth Prime, not in a parallel world United States that’s rational about guns. Here, people are OK with random folks carrying around guns , often with no meaningful gun safety training at all. The gun lobby has won everywhere with this.
    If that’s case, ’tis better to know than not to know. I want to know whether the man or woman I’m around has a gun, so I can take appropriate protective action. I don’t want to find out when they whip it out.That’s WAAAY too late.

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  242. john personna says:

    I’d like to see very few people carrying. I’d prefer those to be people like the 98 pound woman, who is up against a real threat, and has proven that she can complete a course, and a test, and not fire blindly.

    I don’t think anyone has the right to make her less safe, to make her a target, a small woman with a $600 bangle that goes bang.

    Not for a political point, nor to make bar fights “more safe.”

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  243. stonetools says:

    @john personna:

    Again, I have been for reducing carry, increasing the hurtles to carry, all through this.

    I’m totally for reducing carry too. Are we winning that argument? No.
    Indeed, let’s face it, we’ve lost in most states. Time to fall back to a new line of defense.

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  244. Moosebreath says:

    @john personna:

    “I don’t think anyone has the right to make her less safe”

    True. You just think that she should have the right to make the rest of us less safe without us knowing it. And that’s where our disagreement is.

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  245. Rafer Janders says:

    @john personna:

    I’d like to see very few people carrying. I’d prefer those to be people like the 98 pound woman, who is up against a real threat, and has proven that she can complete a course, and a test, and not fire blindly.

    Just popping back in here briefly, but john, have to address this: in the real world, would most carry permits be sought by people like this woman, or would they be sought by Walter Mitty types and/or NRA types? If we permit concealed carry, we know that most people who do so won’t be the woman in fear of an ex-boyfriend, but more likely that ex-boyfriend himself.

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  246. Rafer Janders says:

    @john personna:

    Maybe you should avoid altercations? Or certain bars after 10pm?

    Easy advice to give, not so easy to take. Myself, I’ve been in two physical altercations in the last year — one with a driver who nearly ran over my girlfriend as he sped around a corner and then objected when I called him a c*nt, and one with two drunk guys whom I caught kicking a homeless woman.

    Myself, I’m very happy that in neither case were any of us armed, because it would have been very, very easy for those situations to have escalated to the point where I or they got shot.

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  247. Rafer Janders says:

    @john personna:

    As I’ve said I would support reduced carry, but not putting more guns in visible reach of the criminal and disturbed population.

    If people don’t have the strength and situational awareness to prevent their guns from being taken away from them, then they shouldn’t be carrying around guns in the first place. And, frankly, if they can’t protect their gun on the street, then they’re probably not going to be able to use the gun to defend themselves in a real crisis. Most likely the attacker will just wrest the gun away from them, and then instead of an unarmed attacker they’ll be facing an armed one.

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  248. Trevor says:

    @stonetools: The majority of middle class gun owners who sell guns sell them on consignment through a FFL dealers already. Craigslist doesn’t allow gun sales nor does Ebay. If you buy one off one of those internet sites that sells guns it has to be shipped to a gun dealer with a federal firearms licence who does a background check when you pick up the gun.

    Sure there are a few firearms transfers where hunting or shooting buddies swap rifles or shotguns, someone sells one to his neighbor. Sometimes a son or grandson inherits dads heirloom shotgun or rifle, or the Luger his grandad brought back from WWII but this is miniscule, and really not worth the massive cost of creating a national gun registry that the criminals won’t comply with anyway.

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  249. Trevor says:

    @Tsar Nicholas: Oral sex in bedrooms is still illegal in Virginia. That law is about as enforceable as these mandatory background checks Obama is proposing.

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  250. Penni says:

    It’s wonderful that you are getting ideas from this paragraph as well as from our argument made at this time.

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  251. Mike A says:

    @michael reynolds:

    I noticed you gave no specifics as to how his logic was flawed, just more liberal nay saying based on…well based on nothing

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