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Why Having A Gun For Self Defense Matters

When it comes down to the point where you have to defend yourself and your children:

LOGANVILLE, Ga. —  A woman hiding in her attic with children shot an intruder multiple times before fleeing to safety Friday.

The incident happened at a home on Henderson Ridge Lane in Loganville around 1 p.m. The woman was working in an upstairs office when she spotted a strange man outside a window, according to Walton County Sheriff Joe Chapman. He said she took her 9-year-old twins to a crawlspace before the man broke in using a crowbar.

But the man eventually found the family.

“The perpetrator opens that door. Of course, at that time he’s staring at her, her two children and a .38 revolver,” Chapman told Channel 2′s Kerry Kavanaugh.

The woman then shot him five times, but he survived, Chapman said. He said the woman ran out of bullets but threatened to shoot the intruder if he moved.

“She’s standing over him, and she realizes she’s fired all six rounds. And the guy’s telling her to quit shooting,” Chapman said.

The woman ran to a neighbor’s home with her children. The intruder attempted to flee in his car but crashed into a wooded area and collapsed in a nearby driveway, Chapman said.

Deputies arrested 32-year-old Atlanta resident Paul Slater in connection with the crime. Chapman said they found him on the ground saying, “Help me. I’m close to dying.” Slater was taken to Gwinnett Medical Center for treatment.  Chapman said Slater was shot in the face and neck.

In February, Slater was arrested on simple battery charges, according to the Gwinnett County Sheriff’s Office. He has been arrested six other times in the county since 2008.

At its most fundamental level, this is what the Constitutional right to keep and bear arms is all about. Those of you who would deny that right to your fellow citizens are essentially saying that it’s okay for criminals to victimize the innocent, and that the innocent don’t have the right to fight back.

Related Posts:

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:

    It’s an outlier. Like claiming you need to always have a pair of wire cutters on you because once upon a time someone got caught in barbed wire. Maybe you should go around wearing a life preserver because sometimes people drown.

    Statistically her nine year-olds were in far greater danger because she had a gun in the house. But of course had one of the kids accidentally shot the other – as happens quite frequently — that would have been dismissed as proving nothing. The fact that the country is ass-deep in gun suicides and gun murders is evidence of nothing, but one case of self-defense is supposed to justify an armed nation.

    You don’t think clearly when it comes to guns, Doug. You buy into evidence that in any other circumstance you would dismiss as irrelevant. It warps your thinking. It makes you dumb.

    Highly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 53 Thumb down 35

  2. @michael reynolds:

    Given the number of legally owned guns in this country, Michael, the statistics actually argue against your proposition.

    Hot debate. What do you think? Thumb up 29 Thumb down 27

  3. bk says:

    Those of you who would deny that right to your fellow citizens are essentially saying that it’s okay for criminals to victimize the innocent, and that the innocent don’t have the right to fight back.

    WHO IS SAYING THAT, DOUG?

    Highly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 33 Thumb down 9

  4. @michael reynolds:

    More importantly, who are you to question whether this woman, or me, or anyone else, should have the right to own a gun to defend themselves?

    I would suggest that you have no more right to question that than you have the right to question my right to write the blog post above.

    Hot debate. What do you think? Thumb up 22 Thumb down 28

  5. john personna says:

    I saw the headline and expected a Steven post slyly leading to the statistics.

    This story did not change the fact that gun owning families suffer more violence than non-owners.

    Sadly this story IS what the controversy is all about. Some people can process the national data, and some will make it about one story, emotion, fear, stupidity.

    Highly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 31 Thumb down 8

  6. Gustopher says:

    @michael reynolds: Just because it is dumb, doesn’t mean that it isn’t constitutionally protected.

    I have no doubt that the founders were not looking at tables of actuarial statistics for homes with and without muskets. There were two purposes — make the country hard to invade, and make the country hard to rule tyrannically — neither of which had much to do with child safety.

    Guns are about freedom. The freedom to have the means of resistance, the freedom to shoot your own head off, and the freedom to greatly increase the risk of death for your children.

    Hot debate. What do you think? Thumb up 22 Thumb down 8

  7. @Gustopher:

    I agree

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 7

  8. Gustopher says:

    @Doug Mataconis: Your blog post doesn’t kill innocent bystanders through foolish, negligent accidents.

    Highly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 18 Thumb down 2

  9. JKB says:

    @michael reynolds:

    You reveal your lack of information. Self-defense using a firearm, especially in the home, is not an outlier. Actually, having to shoot is a bit rarer but then this guy wasn’t there just to rob it seems:

    “Inside of the house he pried open the bedroom door, the bathroom door and the bathroom leading to a closet to get to these people,” said Cpt. Greg Hall with the Walton County Sheriff’s Department.

    Hot debate. What do you think? Thumb up 12 Thumb down 10

  10. Todd says:

    I agree with Michael. I’m not ideologically opposed to guns, as I have to qualify on my duty weapon every couple months for my job. But with young kids at home, if I was to own a personal weapon it would probably be of little use for this type of self defense, as there’s no way the weapon and the ammunition would ever be (unlocked) in the same place at the same time in my house. Even if I was careful about storage, I still think the increased risk of an accident would be far greater than the chance that an intruder would ever break into my house while someone was home. From an ORM (operational risk management) perspective, not owning a weapon is the logical choice (for me anyway).

    Highly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 41 Thumb down 3

  11. john personna says:

    @Doug Mataconis:

    There may be corner cases where buying a gun is your best move for personal safety, but that does not make your argument above that this example shows that guns generally make their owners safer.

    The argument that ownership is justified by increased public safely fails.

    There are separate Constitutional arguments but those are not actually public safety arguments

    Hot debate. What do you think? Thumb up 18 Thumb down 7

  12. RG says:

    This story did not change the fact that gun owning families suffer more violence than non-owners.

    Sure, from idiots like Slater who keep breaking into gun owners’ homes.

    The study you cite is from 1993. Do you have updated statistics?

    Hot debate. What do you think? Thumb up 8 Thumb down 13

  13. Andy says:

    @john personna:

    This story did not change the fact that gun owning families suffer more violence than non-owners.

    I’d be interested in seeing the source for that if you wouldn’t mind posting it. Thanks.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 10 Thumb down 1

  14. JKB says:

    @john personna: actually public safety

    Well, first this wasn’t about “public safety” is was about personal safety and having the capability to stop someone intent on doing harm to her and her 5 kids.

    On the other hand, it now appears the man may have tried this in a nearby subdivision but was scared off. Also, he may not make it off the ventilator so there’s your public safety. The public will now be safer because this woman acted in her family’s own best interest by stopping an assailant who pursued the family into a crawlspace.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 12 Thumb down 7

  15. Al says:

    @michael reynolds:

    Statistically speaking, her kids are 100 times more likely to be killed by a pool than by a gun. Shouldn’t we work on banning pools first?

    Hot debate. What do you think? Thumb up 19 Thumb down 10

  16. wr says:

    @Doug Mataconis: That’s right. Who is he to question your right to own a gun. Or a pound of heroin. Or a nuclear weapon, for that matter.

    In fact, who is he to question your right to cook meth in your living room and vent the fumes out in the open, or dump your dirty motor oil in the storm drain or take a crap on the sidewalk. Who is he to question a single one of your choices? After all, it’s not like we live in a society of 300,000,000, and many things that you do have a profound effect on hundreds or thousands or millions of other people. You live all by yourself on the vast prairie, a he-man untamed and free and wild.

    For God’s sake, Doug, you’re not twelve anymore. Stop talking like you are. Grow up.

    Highly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 51 Thumb down 18

  17. Brett says:

    Was that guy on methamphetamines or something? She shoots him five times, he just says, “Stop it please”, then runs away before finally collapsing?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

  18. RG says:

    After all, it’s not like we live in a society of 300,000,000, and many things that you do have a profound effect on hundreds or thousands or millions of other people.

    So what?

    Those other people aren’t going to stop living. Why the hell are they supposed to be my problem, much less Doug’s?

    Hot debate. What do you think? Thumb up 6 Thumb down 18

  19. Todd says:

    @Doug Mataconis:

    Perhaps society should not be able to tell you whether or not you can own a weapon for self defense, but if you live in a populated area, such as a sub-division, I think there is a reasonable case for restricting the type of weapons that a homeowner keeps. Most high velocity rounds, especially shot from rifles travel entirely too far to ever be shot safely in a populated area. In other words, the “sexy” weapons that seem to be so popular lately, are uniquely ill-suited for precisely the purpose that the buyers say they’re being purchased for.

    Hot debate. What do you think? Thumb up 21 Thumb down 7

  20. JKB says:

    @Todd:

    You must work for some organization. I have a family member who before leaving police work was one of the best cops in the state. His duty weapon lived on top of the refrigerator. His sons are taught not to touch the gun. He gun proofs his kids. They know when and how they are permitted to handle firearms. Oh, and when he ran homeland security for his 10 counties, there was an M4, select fire weapon in the trunk of his car.

    Risk management is a balance. You indicate you’d rather your family dead than able to defend themselves. Possibly you live in an environment where the risk of an intruder is not great so having a firearm available isn’t a necessary risk. I know some, who carry on body in their home. I’m a bit in the middle.

    Funny thing is, having a firearm available often means you are less likely to need it. Being able to fall back to deadly force permits an aggressive but not violent response to perceived threats that often dissuades would be attackers.

    Hot debate. What do you think? Thumb up 11 Thumb down 19

  21. Andy says:

    @Todd: That assuming people are buying those “sexy” weapons for home defense. Government can never really know why individuals purchase guns, so attempting to regulate weapons based on “ill-suited” purposes seems destined to fail.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 7 Thumb down 1

  22. Ray says:

    Summing matters up, Hemenway notes that a number of surveys have found that a gun kept at home is far more likely to be used in violence, an accident, or a suicide attempt than self defense. (He also goes off on a long diversion about how a poorly trained gun owner is unlikely to use one well even when self defense is involved.) As a result, from a public health perspective, there’s little doubt that a gun at home is generally a negative risk factor.

    And, from the author’s perspective, that’s probably inevitable. “Regular citizens with guns, who are sometimes tired, angry, drunk, or afraid, and who are not trained in dispute resolution, have lots of opportunities for inappropriate gun use,” he wrote. “People engage in innumerable annoying and somewhat hostile interactions with each other in the course of a lifetime.” In contrast, the opportunities to use guns in a context where the user isn’t any of the above are probably always going to be rare.

    Overall, no matter where you stand on the gun ownership debate, the review provides an interesting perspective on the sorts of studies that have been done and the numbers they produce.

    http://bit.ly/JggP1v

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 11 Thumb down 2

  23. JKB says:

    @Brett:

    Most people, especially those against guns, are ignorant of the real impact of a wounding by firearm. Unless a few really vital areas are hit, a person shot doesn’t collapse, and if they fall, they can get up and continue to be a threat for quite some time till the damage causes a drop in blood pressure.

    I’d have to look it up but I think it is something like 80% of people shot with a handgun survive, assuming they get to a hospital quickly.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 2

  24. matt says:

    @Brett: I’m guessing she was using some cheap ammo. A .38 revolver with good ammo should do terrible damage to someone shot in the face.

    There was an attempted shooting spree down here in San Antonio at about the same time as Sandy Hook… Course y’all didn’t hear about it because the shooter was stopped by an armed patron getting soda in the lobby of the theater. Some people were injured but no one died.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 7 Thumb down 2

  25. michael reynolds says:

    @Doug Mataconis:

    More importantly, who are you to question whether this woman, or me, or anyone else, should have the right to own a gun to defend themselves?

    What if you tell me tomorrow that your “right to self-defense” requires you to possess nerve gas? Or an anti-tank gun? Where is that “right to self-defense” in the constitution? Is that one of those unenumerated rights?

    This is what I mean by this issue making people stupid. That’s an utterly untenable argument. It takes me three seconds to blow it out of the water.

    What if you decide that driving in traffic is so dangerous you need a tank? Uh….

    See how easy that is?

    Your “rights?” Did I challenge your “constitutional rights?” No. I challenged your logic. Again: file under “made stupid by defending guns.” It’s like you suffer brain damage when talking about guns. But then, boys and toys. Emphasis on “boys.”

    Hot debate. What do you think? Thumb up 34 Thumb down 21

  26. Todd says:

    @JKB,

    Actually, I do live in a relatively safe area, but that’s not the reason I don’t have a weapon in my house. Statistically, the odds that I’d ever have to fire a gun at an intruder in my home are so infinitesimally small that it’s honestly not something I spend ANY time worrying about. Granted, the chances of an accident involving a gun in my house would also be incredibly tiny … but still greater than the odds of having to use it for self-defense.

    I’m not saying that you, or anyone else shouldn’t have the right to keep a weapon. But my family situation, it just wouldn’t make sense to me to have a gun in the house.

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  27. michael reynolds says:

    @Al:

    We regulate pools. You are required to have a fence, and in Florida for example it’s usually a rather impressive fence. And you’re required to carry insurance. And if a kid wanders into your pool and drowns you’re held liable in most jurisdictions if you’ve failed to protect against that possibility.

    Are you prepared to accept similar safeguards with guns?

    Highly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 43 Thumb down 8

  28. OldSouth says:

    If someone must end up in the intensive care unit as a result of this crime–and btw, the gent who broke into the house, pursued the woman and her children committed a violent crime–better it be the criminal than the mother of the children. Or the children. Or all of them.

    Had they been injured or killed because they were defenseless in the house, no one outside the local paper would have taken note. (Just another senseless tragedy, dear-dear-dear-whatever-shall-we-do-to-aid-the-poor-criminals-who-seem-compelled-to-commit-mayhem…)

    Somehow, in all the bloviating by the hysterical leftists who troll here, this has been overlooked in the main.

    She did the right thing, and had an appropriate tool at hand. Had she had one of the Glock models with a larger capacity clip, the police and medical system would not be left with the task of rescuing this criminal from the consequences of his criminal behavior. If he survives, he’ll have to be prosecuted and incarcerated, with all the medical complications of his wounds paid for by the public purse.

    Poorly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 9 Thumb down 25

  29. michael reynolds says:

    @JKB:

    Show me the stats.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 12 Thumb down 6

  30. al-Ameda says:

    315 Million people, over 250 Million guns.
    Clearly, not enough Americans possess guns.
    We have a very strong cult of gun ownership in this country.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 13 Thumb down 1

  31. JKB says:

    @Ray:

    I’m sure you found some study but you reveal an ignorance. Most police aren’t that well trained, that experienced and, especially in urban areas and those with the most restrictive gun control, don’t practice a lot, often only firing their firearm for the annual qualification which is a low threshold test, i.e, doesn’t require marksmanship proficiency.

    And yes, you’ll be able to cite veteran officers who chose to work high crime areas that put in for all the training and have active gun use in their records. But they aren’t that many of the total police officers out there.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 9

  32. michael reynolds says:

    It never fails, by the way, that the gun nuts immediately go off into gun-porn.

    “If she’d had a bigger gun, with better ammo, mmmm, yeah baby, yeah, like that, bigger, bigger! Bang! Bang! Oh, God, BANG!

    Creepy. There are meds for impotence nowadays. You don’t need a gun.

    Hot debate. What do you think? Thumb up 31 Thumb down 17

  33. Todd says:

    @Andy: “Government can never really know why individuals purchase guns”

    I know this is a popular Internet interpretation of the intent of the 2nd amendment, but unless I’m mistaken, I don’t believe the courts have ever held that the government can’t require gun registration. Sure some states don’t require it, but that doesn’t mean they can’t .. or shouldn’t.

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

  34. JKB says:

    @michael reynolds:

    The right to self defense is a natural right. It doesn’t need to be enumerated. BTW, Heller dealt with this issue quite well. But let’s go to the logical conclusion, if you have no right to self defense you have not right to Life, Liberty or the Pursuit of Happiness, cause you know, you can’t stop threats to your person or others so they can deprive you of your life, your liberty and/or your pursuit of happiness.

    As for your other foolish points, your right to self defense is limited to the force necessary to stop the threat. Oh, and if you look it up, you’ll see “reasonably necessary”. Deadly force, e.g., a firearm, can only be used to stop an imminent threat of death or serious bodily injury.

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

  35. Andy says:

    @Todd: Are you actually responding to me? I didn’t say anything about registration or the 2nd amendment.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

  36. anjin-san says:

    I’m 53. I don’t know anyone (civilian) who had ever defended themselves or their family with a gun. I do know people who have been shot. I know people who have had loved ones murdered with a gun. I have a friend who’s wife is in jail on a gun charge. Her kids need her, and she is wearing an orange jumpsuit.

    Do people sometimes defend themselves with guns? Sure. But in an honest conversation, we have to ask if the tragedies associated with having guns in the home outweigh stories like this.

    Highly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 31 Thumb down 6

  37. anjin-san says:

    @ JBK

    The right to self defense is a natural right

    Really? So is the right to be married to the person you choose, if they wil have you.

    Do you support gay marriage rights?

    Hot debate. What do you think? Thumb up 17 Thumb down 3

  38. Todd says:

    @Andy:

    How did you arrive at the conclusion that “Government can never really know why individuals purchase guns” ?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 2

  39. Todd says:

    Actually Andy, I see what you meant. Sorry.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

  40. Alex Knapp says:

    Doug and JKB,

    The legality of owning a firearm is a separate issue from whether its wise to do so.

    Statistically speaking, the children are at much greater risk from the presence of a firearm in the house than they are from an intruder in their home. That’s the consensus of the literature going back decades. Feel free to yell at that all you like, but it won’t change the facts.

    It’s legal to have a handgun in the house with two small children. But statistically speaking, it’s a greater danger to the children than to any would-be criminal. That makes keeping it in the house, in my personal opinion, unwise.

    I’m trained in firearm use. I’ve fired thousands of rounds of ammunition. Heck, I *like* firing guns. At the range, where I rent them.

    There are many less overtly dangerous and more effective and precise means of self-defense than firearms.

    Highly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 31 Thumb down 2

  41. michael reynolds says:

    @JKB:

    Oh, look: no stats. And yet you assured me they existed. What a surprise. Bluster and bullsh!t as usual.

    Hot debate. What do you think? Thumb up 19 Thumb down 8

  42. Andy says:

    @Todd:

    How did you arrive at the conclusion that “Government can never really know why individuals purchase guns” ?

    Because it’s self evident. People purchase guns for all kinds of reasons, not just self defense. How can government know the reason behind any individual gun purchase? It can’t.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 1

  43. JKB says:

    @michael reynolds: Creepy. There are meds for impotence nowadays. You don’t need a gun.

    You don’t have to be a Freudian to note that blaming guns feels like blaming men. Could it be that Americans have been induced to hate guns because they appear to be phallic?

    Really, this phallic obsession anti-gunners have is getting a bit much. Guns are not penises. They do, however, equalize small, weak, or infirm against the strong, violent, or psychotic.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 14

  44. Andy says:

    @Todd: Oops, didn’t see this comment before I replied. No worries!

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

  45. matt says:

    A great read about violence in this country.

    http://ordinary-gentlemen.com/blog/2013/01/great-fact-little-fact/

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

  46. michael reynolds says:

    For the record, I have fired the following: Ruger Blackhwak 44 Magnum, 45 Colt Auto, Charter Arms 32, a 357 I don’t recall the make, 12 gauge shotgun ditto, 20-20 again I don’t recall the make and I personally owned a 410, a Marlin 22 lever action, and a Colt 45.

    It’s fun to fire guns.

    I’m sure it’s fun to fire mortars. And fun to fire howitzers. It’s probably fun to set off nukes. Kind of not the point. The point is when you own a gun you create a hazard to me and my family as well as to yourself and your family. And a scattering of “self-defense” stories do not change the facts.

    But of course like any cult member, like any brainwashed sucker, gun nuts don’t really trade in facts or logic. Your arguments are tissue paper in a rain storm. They’re crap. They lack any substance. You’re about as convincing as Scientologists or Hare Krishna of Jonestown Kool-Aid drinkers. Mataconis is not a stupid man. The fact that he will make transparently stupid arguments on this issue is evidence that we are dealing here with something more like religious fanaticism than reason.

    I’m in New York tonight. The limo driver bringing me in from JFK wanted very much to tell me that GMO foods were the precursor to mind control. That is exactly what gun nuts sound like. Like the crazy man I just hope won’t lose his sh!t and kill me before we get to my hotel.

    Highly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 35 Thumb down 13

  47. michael reynolds says:

    @JKB:

    And yet again: no stats.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 10 Thumb down 5

  48. JKB says:

    @Alex Knapp: There are many less overtly dangerous and more effective and precise means of self-defense than firearms.

    Well, call your Congressman. We’ll get legislation mandating those methods for law enforcement then they’ll stop shooting people… in self defense. Because, you know, if they aren’t shooting people in self defense they are committing attempted homicide, murder or manslaughter.

    I’ll grant that kids and guns don’t mix when parents refuse to gun proof their kid. I’d grant that some gun proofed kids might be injured by a firearm. But the decision to have a readily available firearm in the house is a personal one, not a government one. Unless, you are okay with children raped and murder while their mother watches or after she’s killed because it was decided in Congress that she should have not means to defend herself or kids. What’s a few murdered kids compared to the probabilities. It’s all a numbers game. People seem pretty upset over the Sandy Hook killings even though those kids were deprived by law of anyone to stop the killer except for that first officer who was 20 minutes away when he got the call.

    Hot debate. What do you think? Thumb up 7 Thumb down 15

  49. matt says:

    @michael reynolds: I find it interesting that you use the slipperly slope argument one way while ignoring the other way…

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 4

  50. JKB says:

    @michael reynolds: Like the crazy man I just hope won’t lose his sh!t and kill me before we get to my hotel.

    Don’t you wish you had a firearm? Then you wouldn’t have to live in hope, you could live in confidence. Confident that you had the capability to stop an imminent threat of death or serious bodily injury from the crazy man. Sure you might fail, but at least you’d have more than your good looks between you and death.

    Hot debate. What do you think? Thumb up 6 Thumb down 18

  51. anjin-san says:

    I’d grant that some gun proofed kids might be injured by a firearm.

    Why not just man up and admit the concept of “gun proofed kids” is nonsense?

    Highly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 25 Thumb down 5

  52. michael reynolds says:

    @JKB:
    More stupid from you. I challenged you once before to explain to me how a grade school teacher was supposed to have a readily-available firearm in a classroom of 25 little kids and be safe. Naturally no answer. Just like your failure to provide any factual basis for your claim that guns keep people safe. You got nothing. You’re a dud round.

    Hot debate. What do you think? Thumb up 20 Thumb down 8

  53. JKB says:

    @michael reynolds:

    No stats for you.

    But you can google up all the stats on all the bad things that didn’t happen so weren’t reported because someone had the capability to stop them if staring down the bad guy didn’t work.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 12

  54. michael reynolds says:

    @JKB:

    Thanks for admitting that you’ve got nothing.

    You never do.

    You’re a void.

    Highly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 25 Thumb down 8

  55. michael reynolds says:

    I’m sitting here half hammered, jet-lagged, waiting for Ambien to kick in and I can bat you clowns down without trying. That’s how empty your arguments are. That’s how little you have. Empty-headed little nothings with gun hard-ons.

    Hot debate. What do you think? Thumb up 23 Thumb down 11

  56. JKB says:

    @michael reynolds:

    Actually, i did tell you how: on body carry with retention holster

    If guns didn’t keep people safe, then why to police carry them? Why do security guards carry them? Why are their people alive or unraped because of them?

    If guns didn’t keep people safe, why would you call a cop? Couldn’t you just call the pizza delivery guy, he’s there in 30 minutes or less?

    Hot debate. What do you think? Thumb up 7 Thumb down 13

  57. JKB says:

    @michael reynolds:

    Okay, you are drunk and on a hypnotic drug. Yeah, you shouldn’t have a gun….right now. So you’ll just have to live in hope. Oh, btw, your carrying a firearm under the influence would get you arrested in most jurisdictions.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 11

  58. JKB says:

    @anjin-san: Why not just man up and admit the concept of “gun proofed kids” is nonsense?

    You are against gun safety?

    You don’t think kids who see guns in movies, TV, cartoons, video games, etc. might not benefit from being taught about real guns, how to handle them safely, how to respect them, how not to be curious of them?

    I was gun proofed, my brother was gun proofed, my cousins were gun proofed their kids have been gun proofed, well those over 5. Thousands of kids who hunt and target shoot have been gun proofed. Do some forget their training? Sure but it is a damn sight better to have been taught about guns than to have them made into some alluring taboo token.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 10

  59. Console says:

    http://www.stowetoday.com/stowe_reporter/news/police_blotter/article_85414e7e-5673-11e2-b1b8-0019bb2963f4.html

    http://www.kvewtv.com/article/2013/jan/07/mesa-teen-recovering-after-being-accidentally-shot/

    http://fox4kc.com/2013/01/07/four-year-old-recovering-from-accidental-shooting/

    Having a gun isn’t some sort of empowerment. Stop glorifying this nonsense. Guns are just dangerous tools and they should be treated and regulated as such. They aren’t holy talismans that ward off tyranny and anarchy.

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  60. mantis says:

    Why Having A Gun For Self Defense Matters

    It matters in all kinds of ways. Since we’re plucking them from the news…

    Drunk man celebrating his birthday busted after fatally shooting 34-year-old man inside Brooklyn diner

    Jason Lewis was at the counter of the Country House Diner in Clinton Hill about 5 a.m. when a drunken Tyrone Gainer started grabbing Lewis’ girlfriend, witnesses said. She said something to her tormentor and then Lewis, 34, intervened.

    A boozed-up Gainer, 27, smacked Lewis in the face.

    “Why’d you smack me?” Lewis demanded. “We don’t have to shed blood for this.”

    Gainer apparently disagreed, whipping out a .22-caliber handgun and ending the argument with senseless violence.

    Police responded to the shooting a shooting at 887 Fulton St. in Clinton Hill — but it was too late.

    “He just put the gun to his heart and pulled the trigger,” said Hakim Abdel, owner of the Fulton St. eatery. “Two seconds — it just took two seconds.”

    I’m sure the drunk murderer carried his gun for self defense too. Good thing he had it with him, just in case.

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  61. anjin-san says:

    @ JKB

    You are against gun safety?

    Pretty lame even for you. I learned gun safety from an expert (my father, who taught gun safety courses when he was a young dude). I have been shooting for 45 years & own several pistols.

    I know enough about gun safety to know something can always go wrong. “gun proofed kids” is a lot like “drug free American”, it’s a nice concept, it just does not translate into reality. You can train a kid all you want, it does not make them “proof” anything.

    The difference between you and I is I don’t need prove my manhood by droning on about how much I know about guns and violent situations (worked in bars and nightclubs for 25 years, dealt with plenty of them)

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  62. anjin-san says:

    And let me clarify, since you are a little slow – I am not saying that teaching a kid gun safety is not a good idea. I am saying that the concept of “gun proof” is bogus. It’s marketing (which I do for a living).

    Words mean things. Speaking of that, did you look “socialism” up yet? It would be interesting to hear what you have to say once you actually know what it is.

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  63. anjin-san says:

    Here are some thoughts based on my bar experience. When I stated training behing the bar, a friend & co worker asked me if I thought I was qualified to tend bar. I started rattling off all the drinks and bar protocol I was learning.

    He said, “no, I know you will be fine with that stuff – what I want to know is do you think you are ready to deal with a 300 lb. psychopath who is too drunk to feel pain?” Of course, my answer was no, so my buddy trained me. He was a legitimate tough guy, the son of a Marine war hero who had been studying martial arts with a very serious instructor for a long time. He is in his 60s now, and still does submission fighting.

    Lots of time behind the bar over the years, and a lot of situations to deal with. Tending bar can be a pretty dangerous job. In all those years, it never even occurred to me to keep a gun behind the bar. No one I knew did. I worked with some bouncers who were pretty serious guys, none of them carried guns. Even in my reasonably competent hands, I think it would have created more danger than it spared. I rarely had to lay hands on anyone, and only had to physically take someone down once. A lot of situations were resolved without anyone getting hurt, and when things did get rough, it was almost always resolved with the minimum possible violence.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 14 Thumb down 4

  64. Jenos Idanian #13 says:

    @michael reynolds: It’s an outlier.

    WTF? “Outlier?” There are stories pretty much every week about people using guns in self-defense. The NRA has a regular feature about such stories. The “outliers” are the mass shootings that are being used as the excuse for gun-grabbing.

    And the “out-liar” here in this thread is clearly Mr. Reynolds. In vino veritas.

    Here is the real lesson of this story: the woman was armed with what most people consider an “adequate” gun for self-defense — a pistol with a capacity of five rounds. (Assumption: it was a revolver, as she fired five shots and emptied the gun.) After those five shots, which we’re assured is adequate for most self-defense cases:

    1) She had to bluff the wounded intruder that the gun was still loaded.
    2) She still had to flee her home with her children, as she still feared the intruder.
    3) The intruder got up after being shot five times and drove away from the scene.

    The lesson here: the mother should get a semi-automatic pistol with a decent capacity for protecting herself and her family. And she should get more range time. She did the right thing here, but she was also very, very lucky. She can’t count on being lucky next time.

    Poorly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 10 Thumb down 27

  65. george says:

    @michael reynolds:

    Statistically her nine year-olds were in far greater danger because she had a gun in the house.

    The main problem is that statistics don’t apply to individual cases – this is drummed into your head in Stats 101, and continuously re-appears in engineering work. The average man is something like 5’10″, but if all clothes were designed for that height guys like Shaq would have a lot of trouble.

    She might be the kind of person who watches her firearms very carefully, so the chances of her nine year olds shooting each other or themselves, or some other such accident, might be infinitesmial in her, specific case.

    So as a society those kinds of statistics can be taken into account. For an individual, not so much so.

    The biggest problem in the US is that there are already so many firearms out there, that not having one yourself doesn’t preclude coming into contact with someone carrying one with ill intent. I don’t know what the solution is. In the short run, I’d go the route of limiting handguns, large magazines, and semi-automatics – she would have done as well or better with a bolt action rifle or small magazine shotgun (where one shot would do it). If you’re protecting your home, ease of carry isn’t an issue. This is especially the case in rural areas, where some of what you’re protecting is your livestock from preditators, and your own defense involves a police force that might take an hour to get to you.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 8

  66. Herb says:

    Hey, man….get your .38 special.

    You still don’t need an AR-15.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 11 Thumb down 3

  67. sam says:

    @RG:

    “The study you cite is from 1993. Do you have updated statistics?”

    You might look at this: Kid Shooting statistics for March 2012

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 13 Thumb down 0

  68. Jen says:

    Herb, in two sentences, makes the point that I was going to. If you want a rifle to shoot game, fine. If you want a handgun for self defense, okay.

    But why, why, why, does any rational homeowner need weapons that were designed for the military, with 30 round magazine capacities?

    This post doesn’t contribute to the debate that must be had in this country, instead it serves to drive the legitimate debate further away.

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  69. Jenos Idanian #13 says:

    @Jen: But why, why, why, does any rational homeowner need weapons that were designed for the military, with 30 round magazine capacities?

    How about this:

    1) When I go to the range to practice shooting, I want to spend my limited time shooting, not reloading.

    2) Because my preferred weapon of choice was designed for a large capacity (for example, the Glock 17 comes with a magazine capacity of 17 rounds) and it throws off the balance if I carry fewer rounds.

    3) Because it’s my right, and who the hell are you to decide what I “need?”

    Jen, you are arguing that others’ rights are subject to what you perceive as their “needs,” and their rights only extend to as far as they can persuade you. I reject that. Above, I gave two valid reasons why people might want things that scare you, but I really had no obligation to give you any — you need to first justify your right to impose your (ignorant) beliefs and phobias on others.

    Besides, those large-capacity magazines? They have a nasty habit of jamming at inopportune times. For example, the Tuscon shooter had a Glock-19 with a 33-round magazine, and it jammed on him halfway through — he had to eject it and attempt to reload to keep shooting.

    But again, it isn’t up to me to say why someone might “need” it. It’s up to you to justify imposing your prejudices on everyone else, not everyone else to answer to your fears.

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  70. john personna says:

    A couple comments and a couple downvotes from … people who just cannot bear the facts, I think:

    Does Owning a Gun Increase or Decrease Safety? Science Answers

    In 1998, a paper from the Journal of the American Medical Association concluded “Based on the evidence currently available, it appears that gun ownership is associated with a net increase in the risk of death for a typical individual.

    I’m going to say that the commenters and downvoters know that, and are just pretending that they do not.

    And of course Doug takes the low road, saying that this instance disproves that data.

    … I’m really tired of arguments defended by the “most stupid” path.

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  71. john personna says:

    (Again, that we have a Constitution with a “right to bear” and a culture friendly to guns are other facts, but they don’t MAGICALLY make the self defense argument true. The “right to bear” and the desire to hunt can be there, right along with the increase in risk to gun owners.)

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 7 Thumb down 2

  72. john personna says:

    More from science:

    After adjustment, individuals in possession of a gun were 4.46 (P < .05) times more likely to be shot in an assault than those not in possession. Among gun assaults where the victim had at least some chance to resist, this adjusted odds ratio increased to 5.45 (P < .05).

    Conclusions. On average, guns did not protect those who possessed them from being shot in an assault. Although successful defensive gun uses occur each year, the probability of success may be low for civilian gun users in urban areas. Such users should reconsider their possession of guns or, at least, understand that regular possession necessitates careful safety countermeasures.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 14 Thumb down 2

  73. gVOR08 says:

    Gun threads are getting to be as bad as evolution threads.

    Doug, whatever the Roberts court thinks, I do not believe James Madison thought the Second Amendment said anything one way or another about personal self defense. http://www.nybooks.com/articles/archives/1995/sep/21/to-keep-and-bear-arms/?pagination=false
    This also seems to me to be a good commentary on conservative scholarship in general.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 8 Thumb down 1

  74. Tony W says:

    @Jenos Idanian #13: So your point is that the guns are both dangerous and ineffective? I don’t think that’s what you meant to say – but that’s essentially your argument.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 8 Thumb down 1

  75. john personna says:

    @george:

    The main problem is that statistics don’t apply to individual cases – this is drummed into your head in Stats 101, and continuously re-appears in engineering work. The average man is something like 5’10″, but if all clothes were designed for that height guys like Shaq would have a lot of trouble.

    That is completely mis-teaching statistics. What you’ve just said there is that “sure, a coin flip may be fifty-fifty, but since we just flipped this coin, and the answer is heads, your statistics have no bearing.”

    Ah … kind of a meaningless statement. Sure the family up top was successfully defended. That was true even if it really was a low probability outcome.

    The existence of low probability outcomes does not change the odds, they are by their nature part of it.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 12 Thumb down 0

  76. john personna says:

    We are all familiar with the tobacco lobby, and how they argued for the safety of smoking. There is another good example:

    Yesterday I quoted the Slashdot article on world-wide data on falling crime rates following reduction to lead exposure. Unleaded gas. It turns out, scientists were warning on the risks of lead in gas since the 1920s. No one listened, because there was a lobby and an industry opposing them. The truth was more than ignored, it was suppressed, for 50 years.

    As others have noted, the NRA is in that position now. They are not honest brokers on gun safety. They are suppressing knowledge of studies like those above. They want you to take that brave woman’s story to heart, and just not know that it was a rare outcome.

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  77. Jen says:

    @Jenos Idanian #13:

    3) Because it’s my right, and who the hell are you to decide what I “need?”

    We have all kinds of restrictions on rights–you cannot yell fire in a crowded theatre and call it free speech.

    All y’all need to understand that the killing of 20 little kids means that changes are coming. Probably not dramatic ones, but the right to bear arms is no more absolute than free speech–there can, and should, be conditions.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 15 Thumb down 2

  78. C. Clavin says:

    Mataconis…
    You are so full of shit it must be leaking out your f’ing ears.
    No one is denying anyones right to self defense.
    Is there ar reason she needed an assault rifle to protect herself? Or armor peircing bullets?
    It’s bullshit like this that prevents common sense regulations from being enacted that can actually protect people.
    You are part of the problem.
    Idiot.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 12 Thumb down 3

  79. Jenos Idanian #13 says:

    @Tony W: No, I’m saying that the majority of “gun control” measures — proposed and enacted — are stupid. They tend to focus on irrelevant points. Such as the “assault weapons ban,” which addressed such crucial elements as pistol grips and bayonet mounts. Or the ban on large-capacity magazines, which tend to be more hindrance than help in mass shootings.

    Large capacity magazines are inherently less mechanically reliable than smaller-capacity magazines. That’s been proven over and over. On the firing range, that’s no big deal. You simply eject it, clear it (or swap in a new one), and keep shooting. When you’re engaging in mass murder, it’s a big deal.

    The fundamental problem is that the people most scared of guns are also usually the people most ignorant about guns. Which leads to them proposing some truly mind-bogglingly stupid “solutions.”

    I’m hardly a gun expert. But even I can see the flaws in the ideas put forth around here.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 13

  80. Dave Schuler says:

    I recall a real life case from Chicago of, perhaps, 30 years ago. Two armed Chicago police officers approached an unarmed suspect in a garage. The suspect disarmed one of the police officers and shot both officers dead with the the officer’s service weapon.

    If from a single instance of successful self defense using a handgun you can draw the conclusion that handgun ownership may be necessary for self defense, why can’t you draw the conclusion from another example, of two trained, experienced police officers, prepared and in broad daylight, that handguns are too dangerous for anybody to own or carry?

    I’m not attacking the right to self defense or the right to own a gun. I’m questioning the effectiveness of handguns as a means of self defense and I don’t believe you can determine that based on anecdotes.

    I have little doubt that handguns can be effective means of self defense, given sufficient training, practice, and the right mental attitude. The question is whether handguns are more effective than a knife, club, or fists with that training, practice, and the right mental attitude and whether the benefit is worth the cost.

    I don’t know the answer to those questions. But I think they should be considered with clear eyes.

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  81. Jenos Idanian #13 says:

    @C. Clavin: Is there ar reason she needed an assault rifle to protect herself? Or armor peircing bullets?

    Who the hell said she should have had an assault rifle or armor piercing bullets? You’re the one who’s full of shit here. Hell, in her case an assault rifle would have been too cumbersome, and armor-piercing rounds less effective against her unarmored assailant — as well as a danger to her neighbors.

    What she really could have used was a decent semi-automatic with a reasonable magazine. She was lucky that five rounds were (barely) enough to do the job. But ‘semi-automatics” and “large capacity magazines” are on the target list now, too.

    I don’t know if you’re just ignorant or just plain dishonest, but fortunately you’re not very good at it in either case.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 14

  82. Rob in CT says:

    Of course a gun can be used for self-defense.

    The question is how to make it a little harder for criminals and/or irresponsible people who might become criminals from getting them, without unduly burdening the law-abiding. And that’s not easy to do.

    There are some who basically think it’s too late: with hundreds of millions of guns out there already, there’s just nothing one can do. I see the logic, but must reject that argument. I think we need to do two things: 1) reduce the overall # of guns in circulation (not by trying to take away guns from lawful owners, even if that were constitutionally possible. Preferrably by convincing people, using and combination of data and emotional appeal, that maybe guns really aren’t so cool and useful after all); 2) close the “gun show loophole”; and 3) some mild restrictions thought up by folks who actually know what they’re talking about, aimed at the overall lethality of the gun from a “how many people can you kill with this in a short period of time” perspective.

    Something like that. Also, of course, continuing efforts at reducing the various underlying causes of crime are even more important. So let’s spend some more money on lead abatement…

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 8 Thumb down 0

  83. Jenos Idanian #13 says:

    @Dave Schuler: There’s nothing with your questions, but there’s an underlying assumption that I do find troubling. And that’s the notion that once we have that rational discussion and come to a reasonable conclusion, then we impose that decision on everyone. What’s best in a lot of cases is not best in every case, and putting a “one size fits all” solution denies everyone their right to make their own decisions based on their own particular circumstances.

    Go ahead and formulate your arguments and come to your conclusions. But when it comes to implementing your plans on everyone, don’t expect a lot of cooperation from those on whom you’re imposing your judgment over theirs.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 7

  84. john personna says:

    @Dave Schuler:

    Very much like “I shouldn’t wear seatbelts, because my friend Bob was thrown clear.”

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 11 Thumb down 0

  85. C. Clavin says:

    Yeah…Indiana Jones is calling me full of shit. Right…hows that fedora? I bet it looks good with your onesy.

    The NRA has fought every bit of common sense regulation for ages. Now 20 some-odd kids have died because a gun nut didn’t properly secure her guns. A price will probably be paid. I hope it’s not onerous…I have nothing against guns. I just don’t like 20 some-odd kids getting shot because the NRA owns Congress-critters. And I do not think having to be strapped to go see a movie is freedom. The NRA has done a massive dis-service to gun owners.

    But I wouldn’t expect someone who fancies himself/herself a matinee movie hero with a fancy hat and a bullwhip to understand that.
    Fool.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 12 Thumb down 3

  86. john personna says:

    @Jenos Idanian #13:

    Now you are just saying you don’t want to live in a democracy.

    I”m sure everyone here could name at least one existing law, restriction on their behavior, which they do not support.

    I don’t think California state parks should close when it rains! I could sneak in anyway …

    Most will honor that law nonetheless, because it is a social contract with the rest of us. I follow “your” majority-passed law, and you honor “mine.” It is the bargain that forms a civil society.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 9 Thumb down 0

  87. Jenos Idanian #13 says:

    @Rob in CT: The question is how to make it a little harder for criminals and/or irresponsible people who might become criminals from getting them, without unduly burdening the law-abiding. And that’s not easy to do.

    Are there other areas we can extend this? For example, in light of Susan Smith and Casey Anthony, we should screen all mothers and preemptively take away their children if we have reason to think the mothers might try to kill them.

    Maybe we should force alcohol bottlers to add drugs to booze that render men temporarily impotent, to prevent drunken sexual assaults and otherwise-regrettable booze-fueled sexual encounters.

    Or require parents to get licensed before they procreate, so only responsible people will be entrusted with children.

    I think we’re only scratching the surface of what we could achieve here…

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 12

  88. de stijl says:

    This really needs to be highlighted. Doug actually thinks this:

    Those of you who would deny that right to your fellow citizens are essentially saying that it’s okay for criminals to victimize the innocent, and that the innocent don’t have the right to fight back.

    A lesser person would be tempted to use some really bad language in response to this. Doug, you are way over the line here.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 14 Thumb down 1

  89. Jenos Idanian #13 says:

    @john personna: Now you are just saying you don’t want to live in a democracy.

    Not really, no. I find I prefer our Constitutional Democratic Republic, with majority rule but protection for the rights of the minorities. “Democracy” usually degenerates to a tyranny of the 51%.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 8

  90. Jenos Idanian #13 says:

    @de stijl: A lesser person would be tempted to use some really bad language in response to this. Doug, you are way over the line here.

    Really? I think Doug’s being 100% accurate here. Most gun control measures have the effect Doug described, despite their supporters’ declarations. After a while, you have to question the motives of people who keep saying they’re trying to do good, but keep doing things that have no real effect — or, if anything, make things worse.

    And don’t hold back on “really bad language” on my behalf. I think I’ve been called it all, but you might surprise me and come up with something new and creative.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 10

  91. JKB says:

    @anjin-san: You can train a kid all you want, it does not make them “proof” anything.

    We teach kids how to swim, yet some still drown. We teach them how to float and keep their heads above water, drown-proofing, as well, but some still drown.

    If teaching kids about guns and how to safely handle real ones saves one life, is it not worth it? For the kids?

    It’s a big, tumultuous world out there. You may choose never to have a gun in your house, but your kid may be exposed to one at someone else’s house, or find one while playing, or find one some law enforcement officer has left in the public bathroom. Shouldn’t your kids know how about guns, how to handle them, not have a curiosity driven by taboo?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 8

  92. john personna says:

    @Jenos Idanian #13:

    Rightists pout. That’s what it is when you lose an election and cry “tyranny of the 51%.”

    If you’d won, you’d be all “mandate!”

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 15 Thumb down 1

  93. Tsar Nicholas says:

    One of the most amazing things about the disorder otherwise known as leftism is that these stories do not have any material effect on leftists. The left’s dissociation from reality is too extreme. If anything these types of news accounts anger and annoy liberals, because so many of their bubbles get burst at once they can’t even process them all. So they react by emoting, changing the subject, projecting other issues or their pet peeves, etc.

    The phenomenon of total cognitive dissonance is not strictly limited to the issue of gun control. It rears its head quite often and in various other contexts too.

    A few years ago, when rents in Manhattan reached all-time, inflation-adjusted highs, liberals there in the media-academe-politico complex called for more rent control. They could not grasp the numbingly obvious point that one of the primary reasons why rents are so high in New York is because of long-standing rent control ordinances.

    Also a few years ago, after the use of Taser guns became de rigueur in police departments across the country, the ACLU got all verklempt because the corresponding absence of fatal gunshot wounds among suspects would make it more difficult for them to prove police brutality in connection with Sec. 1983 and other types of lawsuits. Seriously. They could not grasp the obvious fact that de facto they were arguing for more suspects to be shot to death rather than tased into submission. The irony actually was lost on them.

    Pretty much every time there is a minimum wage increase the unemployment rate spikes for young racial minorities in big urban centers. For reasons that are beyond obvious to anyone except for loopy leftists. Yet every year liberal Democrats and their allies in the media-academe complex call for minimum wage hikes. The irony is lost on them. And they also somehow miss the obvious points that the highest poverty rates, especially for racial minorities, tend to occur in urban areas with “sustainable growth” plans, high minimum wages, “living wage” ordinances, and like items.

    Of course the sheer dissonance related to the failed quagmire of the “war on poverty” could fill up an entire treatise on leftism. We’ve been waging that war for over 45 years. AFDC. Medicaid. EITC. Federal unemployment insurance benefits. Etc. Yet the poverty rate today is all but equivalent to the poverty rate that prevailed back in 1965. The irony is lost on liberals. They want to spend more public dollars fighting against poverty. As if the trillions of dollars already spent are not enough. They actually can’t connect the obvious dots that one of the primary reasons why poverty remains so rampant in this country is because we’ve been giving taxpayer-funded handouts to the poor.

    Of course guns are a particular boogeyman for the left wing and ergo it’s not surprising that instantaneously the left will go into loopy high dudgeon mode. Sandy Hook happened in a state with one of the strictest state and local statutory and ordinance-based gun control schemes in the entire country. So naturally the left witnessed that massacre and then immediately unplugged its collective brain and called for more gun control. 1+1 = 7, in the minds’ eyes of leftists.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 13

  94. george says:

    @john personna:

    That is completely mis-teaching statistics. What you’ve just said there is that “sure, a coin flip may be fifty-fifty, but since we just flipped this coin, and the answer is heads, your statistics have no bearing.”

    Ah … kind of a meaningless statement. Sure the family up top was successfully defended. That was true even if it really was a low probability outcome.

    The existence of low probability outcomes does not change the odds, they are by their nature part of it.

    Actually no, I think you’re mistaken. Its very basic to statical analysis. For instance, a bridge flange manufactured by company A might have an average lifetime of 50 years. But any engineer who took that as definitive, without inspecting the flange for individual characteristics, would soon be looking for a new job (and possibly responsible for the deaths of the poor souls who drove over it).

    Statistics are good for looking at multiple (bulk if you want) occurences. They’re not for looking at individual cases. This is a really common failing – its also seen in people using BMI as a diagnostic tool for individuals, rather than a societal (or insurance) tool. A BMI of 30 is taken as meaning you’re obese with all the health risks that come with it. In 99% of the cases that’s probably true. But NHL hockey players, a large proporton of Olympic athletes, and quite a few NBA players have BMI’s in that range. If you believe that statistics applies to the individual (and given what I’ve read of your scientific knowledge in the past, I’m kind of shocked that you seem to do so), you have to conclude all those elite athletes are obese. Which is nonsense.

    Same with gun related deaths. The statistics is a general number hiding a lot of individual differences, and very useful for society. But like BMI, not so useful for an individual. Just as someone with a BMI of 30 can look in the mirror and see if they’re obese or an elite athlete, so can someone with a firearm look at their own gun safety procedures and see if the general statistics applies to them.

    The odds of a coin toss apply to the next toss, because the conditions are (more or less) exactly the same. That’s not true when discussing flanges, BMI, or gun safety. The statistics in this case give a societal mean, not an expectation for a given individual that can be examined in more detail. Another example is life expectancy. For a given individual, once you know their genetics and habits (smoking, eating, exercise, environment, etc), it would be nonsense to say they can automatically expect to live to that average. A 600 pound person who smokes 10 packs a day working as an air traffic controller coming from a family who generally died in their low 40′s from say heart conditions does not have an expected lifespan of 78 years.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 6

  95. C. Clavin says:

    Indiana f’ing Jones thinks Doug is 100% right.
    That pretty much settles how far off Doug is.
    Idiots and fools and make believe heros.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 7 Thumb down 1

  96. george says:

    And actually John Personna, if you re-read my original post, you’ll note I was talking about the statics that Michael Reynolds brought up about her children shooting themselves, not of the self-defense situation. So your comment that I’m discussing the probabilty of a coin that’s already tossed doesn’t apply at all – I wasn’t talking about the statistics of self defense, as a quick re-read should convince you.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 5

  97. JKB says:

    @anjin-san:

    As you relate, you worked in a bar with bouncers, with other people around. You relate incidents where you didn’t have to lay your hands on another and when you did, you didn’t use a weapon.

    You know what you don’t relate? An incident where you were in imminent threat of death or serous bodily injury. In case your “training” didn’t cover it, that would be requirement before you use a firearm, by definition deadly force, in self defense. So regale us with tales of non-justifiable deadly-force, self defense situations….as if they are pertinent to having the ability to stop a threat when in imminent threat of death or serious bodily injury.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 8

  98. Rafer Janders says:

    @Jenos Idanian #13:

    What’s best in a lot of cases is not best in every case, and putting a “one size fits all” solution denies everyone their right to make their own decisions based on their own particular circumstances.

    Exactly. Just like when driving on city streets, what’s best in a lot of cases is not best in every case, and putting a “one size fits all” speed limit on cars denies every driver their right to make their own decisions about how fast to drive on a crowded street based on their own particular circumstances and how late to work they are.

    And similarly, when it comes to implementing the “no grenades on planes” rule on everyone, don’t expect a lot of cooperation from those on whom you’re imposing your judgment over theirs and whose particular circumstances lead them to believe they should be able to carry a live grenade onto an airplane.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 0

  99. john personna says:

    @george:

    You are misdirecting.

    Actually no, I think you’re mistaken. Its very basic to statical analysis. For instance, a bridge flange manufactured by company A might have an average lifetime of 50 years. But any engineer who took that as definitive, without inspecting the flange for individual characteristics, would soon be looking for a new job (and possibly responsible for the deaths of the poor souls who drove over it).

    Do you actually have a way of inspecting a family, before anything goes wrong, to see if they would be safer or unsafer with a gun?

    That’s kind of the bottom line. A father may picture himself successfully defending his home against armed invaders. That is a very powerful and affirming image. He won’t want to think about his teen using the same gun for suicide. That is a negative, indeed shattering, image.

    When we talk about generic prospective gun purchasers we only have statistics.

    No one is “inspecting them” like a bolt on a bridge.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 11 Thumb down 0

  100. Rafer Janders says:

    @Doug Mataconis:

    More importantly, who are you to question whether this woman, or me, or anyone else, should have the right to own a gun to defend themselves?

    Can’t speak for Michael, but as for me, I’m an American citizen in a participatory democracy, so that’s who I am to question how laws apply.

    I would suggest that you have no more right to question that than you have the right to question my right to write the blog post above.

    I would suggest that you have no more right to question my right to question. Who are you to question whether Michael or I, American citizens, can voice our opinion on a matter of public policy?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 9 Thumb down 0

  101. michael reynolds says:

    Just write “Gun” on the internet and it’s like calling a Congress of Cretins. After all this time the gun nuts have two kinds of argument:

    1) Stupid
    2) Astoundingly stupid.

    I suspect guns have the same effect as lead: brain damage that lowers IQ.

    Gun Nut: 2d Amdendment!
    Sane person: Howitzer.
    Gun nut: Duuurrrr.

    Over and over again.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 7 Thumb down 3

  102. john personna says:

    @michael reynolds:

    Shooting in an indoor range, and improper reloading technique, will straight up give you that lead damage.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 0

  103. Rafer Janders says:

    @george:

    The main problem is that statistics don’t apply to individual cases – this is drummed into your head in Stats 101, and continuously re-appears in engineering work.

    Um, no. That’s idiotic. Statistics absolutely apply to individual cases — statistics themselves are nothing more than an aggregation of multiple individual cases. Now, statistics may not be able to tell you how each individual case may work out at any one moment, but they can tell you the global likelihood of the expected outcomes.

    And the fact that any individual case may turn out to be an outlier doesn’t disprove the statistics — it merely confirms that you always expect to find outliers. If I flip a coin and it comes up heads three times in a row, it doesn’t disprove that the overall odds are still 50-50. Or as, for example, if I drive home drunk without an accident, it doesn’t disprove that driving home drunk significantly increases my odds of getting into an accident.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 11 Thumb down 2

  104. CSK says:

    In 2012, there were 28 deaths of children under the age of ten from accidental shootings. This is tragic–exceedingly–but not epidemic. The chances of a young child dying by accidental gunshot wounding is one in 11 million.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 6

  105. george says:

    @john personna:

    Do you actually have a way of inspecting a family, before anything goes wrong, to see if they would be safer or unsafer with a gun?

    No, but the mother in question definitely does have a way of inspecting her family to see if the national odds applies to her family’s condition.

    As I said, as a society the national odds are what we work with. As a mother, they’re not particularly useful. It can go both ways. The national odds of a gun accident might be too high for her conditions if she’s very careful, using a gun safe, storing the bullets in a separate locked container etc. Or too low if she leaves the loaded gun beside her phone on her night table. Nationally both are taken into account.

    The point being, as an individual you have to look at your particular circumstances to decide what’s right. As a society we have to look at the overall situation (and you’ll note I’ve said here and in other places that I don’t think hand guns, semi-automatics, and large magazines are something society should allow).

    The debate isn’t over general statistics in any case – if it were, we’d be arguing about auto deaths, which are far more common (ie gun deaths are a subset of accidental deaths, and of deaths in general).

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 7

  106. michael reynolds says:

    @Rafer Janders:

    Statistically if you jump off the Empire State Building you have a very high likelihood of death.

    But that doesn’t apply to individuals.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 13 Thumb down 3

  107. Rafer Janders says:

    @CSK:

    Why are you restricting it to under the age of ten?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 8 Thumb down 0

  108. Rafer Janders says:

    @george:

    No, but the mother in question definitely does have a way of inspecting her family to see if the national odds applies to her family’s condition.

    Um, no, she doesn’t. Not unless she’s psychic and can predict the future. That’s like saying I have a way of inspecting myself to see if the national odds on drunk driving apply to my personal condition. I’m actually a better driver when I’m drunk! I’m fairly certain I won’t misjudge my speed or fail to notice a red light.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 2

  109. george says:

    @Rafer Janders: @Rafer Janders:

    Um, no. That’s idiotic. Statistics absolutely apply to individual cases — statistics themselves are nothing more than an aggregation of multiple individual cases. Now, statistics may not be able to tell you how each individual case may work out at any one moment, but they can tell you the global likelihood of the expected outcomes.

    Read what you wrote again, about the difference between individual cases and global likelihood. Initially you say they absolutely apply to individual cases, then you say they may not be able to tell you how each individual case my work out at any one moment. You’re on the right track on the second time.

    Look, don’t take my word for it. Talk to a stats prof. You’ll get a lecture about means testing, about intervals of confidence, of various distribution types – and the difference between a global expectation and a specific expecation. This comes up in engineering work constantly, and the answer is always the same. You don’t apply global statistics to critical systems, you apply specific statistics (taking into account all the relevant info you have available, and inspecting where necessary). And in the case of that mother, when deciding whether she would be safer with or without guns in her home, the answer is in those details, not in nation wide figures.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 2

  110. de stijl says:

    Doug sez:

    Those of you who would deny that right to your fellow citizens are essentially saying that it’s okay for criminals to victimize the innocent, and that the innocent don’t have the right to fight back.

    This crap is reason why you get slagged in comments, Doug. Sometimes it’s unfair, but when you “reason” like this, it’s entirely fair. Walk it through in your head, Doug. Do you see what you are accusing people of who do not agree with you on this issue?

    @Jenos Idanian #13:

    And don’t hold back on “really bad language” on my behalf.

    Cromulent.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 10 Thumb down 0

  111. Rafer Janders says:

    @george:

    No, but the mother in question definitely does have a way of inspecting her family to see if the national odds applies to her family’s condition.

    Just like Nancy Lanza was able to accurately inspect her family to see if the national odds on being murdered by a gun in the home applied to her family’s condition.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 8 Thumb down 1

  112. george says:

    @Rafer Janders:

    Um, no, she doesn’t. Not unless she’s psychic and can predict the future. That’s like saying I have a way of inspecting myself to see if the national odds on drunk driving apply to my personal condition. I’m actually a better driver when I’m drunk! I’m fairly certain I won’t misjudge my speed or fail to notice a red light.

    Actually no, to determine the expectation of her children shooting themselves with her firearm, she need only examine her gun safety habits. There are still statistics involved, but its no longer the global statistic.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 3

  113. john personna says:

    @george:

    No, but the mother in question definitely does have a way of inspecting her family to see if the national odds applies to her family’s condition.

    If you are going to make that claim, explain how it is done.

    Is it a problem that a father may buy a gun and later have kids?

    The point being, as an individual you have to look at your particular circumstances to decide what’s right. As a society we have to look at the overall situation (and you’ll note I’ve said here and in other places that I don’t think hand guns, semi-automatics, and large magazines are something society should allow).

    I’d certainly agree that families should look at their full risk profile. It should be framed “do I face risks, and how do I best reduce them.” That makes it a “gun second” process. It is not “can I justify a gun” (when a dog, or a move, may be better and safer).

    The debate isn’t over general statistics in any case – if it were, we’d be arguing about auto deaths, which are far more common (ie gun deaths are a subset of accidental deaths, and of deaths in general).

    The rational family will absolutely use and understand public safety statistics.

    Per city-data, the murder rate for my town has averaged 0.7 per 100,000 for the last 13 years .. and so I know that threats to me are low.

    Those are statistics.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 0

  114. C. Clavin says:

    “…Sandy Hook happened in a state with one of the strictest state and local statutory and ordinance-based gun control schemes in the entire country…”

    Tsar thinks that because a gun-nut failed to secure her murder weapons it negates the usefulness of gun control regulations. How stupid can you actually be? Someone died last night because an idiot drove drunk. Does that mean, therefore, that drunk driving laws are worthless? Are you really that intellectually challenged? Really? Or do you just think it’s smart to say stupid stuff on the internet?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 8 Thumb down 0

  115. george says:

    @Rafer Janders: @Rafer Janders:

    Just like Nancy Lanza was able to accurately inspect her family to see if the national odds on being murdered by a gun in the home applied to her family’s condition.

    Do you really want to go down the road of the plural of anecdote being data? Now you’re making the same mistake as people using this mother’s use in self defense as being representative. A specific expectation analysis (which I doubt Nancy Lanza did in any case) doesn’t give a guarantee, just a more useful probility curve.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 2

  116. de stijl says:

    @CSK:

    In 2012, there were 28 deaths of children under the age of ten from accidental shootings.

    You really need to provide a cite on that, pal.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

  117. C. Clavin says:

    I want to know how it’s possible that this woman shot a guy 5 times at close range and he lived? Is it really smart that someone this incompetent has a weapon?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 3

  118. Rafer Janders says:

    @george:

    Look, don’t take my word for it. Talk to a stats prof.

    OK, didn’t talk to a stats prof, but I did just chat to two of the PhD quants on the trading desk. They’re certain I’m right, that when it comes to fallible human beings with no ability to predict the future and a natural human tendency to overestimate their own competence and underestimate the odds of disaster striking them, that you have to trust the general statistics more than your individual guess about your ability to beat the odds.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 9 Thumb down 1

  119. john personna says:

    @george:

    That is a contradiction, george.

    Your position is that individual data trumps statistics.

    You can’t revert to statistics. lol.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 0

  120. JKB says:

    Statistically, shootings at schools by individuals bent on mass killing or even just using a rifle are minimal. So, statistically, given the long time line of widespread gun ownership, the massive amount of time children spend in school over that time period and the miniscule amount of that time that has had mass shootings of kids while in school, we should do nothing about guns, given the statistical risk.

    Or we could go for a rational solution of reducing the time kids are in school to reduce their exposure. This solution is now feasible and becoming more feasible every week with online courses, interconnectivity, etc. It is a tried and true technique to reduce casualties, dispersion, commonly known as spreading out.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 6

  121. john personna says:

    @C. Clavin:

    Shots centered around head and neck, not center of mass.

    She was obviously pissed at that guy.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

  122. Donald Sensing says:

    “At its most fundamental level, this is what the Constitutional right to keep and bear arms is all about.”

    So you are now dismissing the militia clause as “fundamental?” Just curious.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

  123. john personna says:

    @JKB:

    You know, that comment was almost non-stupid.

    It is true that spree shootings are uncommon, compared to target shooting and hunting. That is why we (IMO) don’t need to halt target shooting and hunting.

    Your error was in saying we should “do nothing.”

    Moderates have suggested small changes which do not seriously impact hunters or target shooters. Essentially they have suggested we should “do a little,” which is not unreasonable.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 1

  124. rodney dill says:

    @C. Clavin:

    Is it really smart that someone this incompetent has a weapon?

    She picked the right target to shoot at…. she just needs a larger magazine to account for aberrations in aim.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 1

  125. C. Clavin says:

    Retired Gen. Stanley McChrystal came out in favor of gun control restrictions in a Tuesday morning appearance on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe.”
    “I spent a career carrying typically either a M16, and later a M4 carbine,” he said. “And a M4 carbine fires a .223 caliber round, which is 5.56 millimeters, at about 3,000 feet per second. When it hits a human body, the effects are devastating. It’s designed to do that. That’s what our soldiers ought to carry.”
    Said McChrystal, “I personally don’t think there’s any need for that kind of weaponry on the streets and particularly around the schools in America. I believe that we’ve got to take a serious look — I understand everybody’s desire to have whatever they want — but we have to protect our children and our police and we have to protect our population. And I think we have to take a very mature look at that.”

    So you have this General advocating a mature look at gun control…then you have Indiana Jones, Tsar, JKB, and Mataconis.

    You decide who to believe.

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

  126. de stijl says:

    @CSK:

    In 2012, there were 28 deaths of children under the age of ten from accidental shootings. This is tragic–exceedingly–but not epidemic.

    My God you’re stupid. It’s 28 per 100,000.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 11 Thumb down 3

  127. Herb says:

    Just saw this nonsense from Alex Jones.

    Keep on talking, guys. That’s all I gotta say.

    “1776 will commence again.” Uh-huh. Good luck with that.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

  128. bk says:

    @Tsar Nicholas: Congrats! I counted 11 different mentions of some variation of “liberal” or “left” in your post, which I think may be a personal record for you.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 8 Thumb down 0

  129. john personna says:

    @rodney dill:

    And hopefully loads that will not fly through the next house.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

  130. JKB says:

    @C. Clavin:

    You reveal your ignorance of firearms and firearm use. And a TV/movie comprehension of the immediate impact of wounds. She achieved her goal, she stopped the threat. As it is, the home invader may still die from his wounds.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 6

  131. Jenos Idanian #13 says:

    @john personna: Moderates have suggested small changes which do not seriously impact hunters or target shooters. Essentially they have suggested we should “do a little,” which is not unreasonable.

    Could you cite a few of those “small changes?” ‘Cuz the ones I’ve seen (mainly here) don’t fit that description.

    1) Assault Weapons ban: focused almost exclusively on cosmetic issues; manufacturers made trivial changes, no real effect.

    2) Tax on ammunition: effect is to disarm the poor and discourage people from “wasting” ammunition in training and practice.

    3) Mandatory “insurance” for gun owners: main effect is to disarm the poor, no real stated purpose for the money collected.

    4) Screening gun owners and would-be gun owners on the possibility they might commit crimes with the guns: dangerously close to “thought crimes” and “Pre-Crime” issues.

    So, what are these “small changes” again?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 6

  132. john personna says:

    @de stijl:

    CSK is actually right. On this page the “28″ shows up on the left, but the adjusted rate of “0.07″ shows up on the right.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 1

  133. john personna says:

    @Jenos Idanian #13:

    I laugh at your selective list.

    You know that I’ve said “magazine sizes and bullet buttons” many, many, times.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 0

  134. CSK says:

    @Rafer Janders:

    Because the article posted above by Doug referred to two children under the age of ten. The number of accidental firearms deaths for all ages for 2012 was 68.

    I have no skin in the game: I don’t have a gun, and don’t want one. But the number of accidental fatal shootings is far less, say, than the number of people killed in auto accidents.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

  135. rodney dill says:

    @john personna: I’m copacetic with that.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  136. de stijl says:

    @CSK:

    In 2012, there were 28 deaths of children under the age of ten from accidental shootings.

    @de stijl:

    My God you’re stupid. It’s 28 per 100,000.

    There were 41 million kids 10 and younger in the US as of 2010. Let’s do the math, shall we?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  137. john personna says:

    @rodney dill:

    Technically though, she didn’t need to kill him. She only needed to incapacitate him, which she did with her shots.

    (Or she certainly deincentivized him.)

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  138. Jenos Idanian #13 says:

    @rodney dill: I’m going way into speculation here, but a few tidbits I’ve heard about the shooting mention she emptied her gun after five shots, and the term “crawlspace” was used. So I’m thinking she got into the crawlspace with her kids and a revolver, and the intruder came after them. When you’re “crawling,” your head and neck come first, and “center of mass” is probably the face at that angle.

    But you’re absolutely right — she really needed of those scary “large-capacity” guns to properly defend herself and her children. She got lucky — she wounded him just enough to bluff with the now-empty gun and get herself and her children past him and to safety, before he got back up and continued to threaten them. (Yes, he’s in bad shape now, but he still managed to get up and drive away before collapsing — which would have been plenty of time to get the family if they hadn’t fled.)

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 3

  139. Herb says:

    @JKB:

    “You reveal your ignorance of firearms and firearm use.”

    We bow to your superior knowledge.

    Now hand over your name, address, SSN, work history, credit history, and whatever else we need to make sure you’re mature enough to handle a weapon. Thank you.

    Signed,

    The rest of America

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 2

  140. JKB says:

    @john personna: Shots centered around head and neck, not center of mass.

    She was obviously pissed at that guy.

    Or could it be she shot the man crawling into the crawl space in which she and her kids were hiding presenting only his head and shoulders as targets?

    If the concern was that she was unable to inflict a rapid, incapacitating wound shooting at the head and shoulders, then she needed an AR-15 rifle, which a rifle the best to overcome the armor of the skull and then have sufficient energy to damage the underlying tissue. The scary features such as a pistol grip being the best to facilitate handling the rifle in the cramped crawl space.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 1

  141. john personna says:

    @Jenos Idanian #13:

    So now you are suggesting that she actually failed?

    What an idiot.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 0

  142. Rafer Janders says:

    @JKB:

    Or we could go for a rational solution of reducing the time kids are in school to reduce their exposure. This solution is now feasible and becoming more feasible every week with online courses, interconnectivity, etc.

    So the conservative solution is to cower in fear, retreat from public society, and hide. Got it.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 0

  143. C. Clavin says:

    JKB…
    I’ve been called much worse by much better.
    Being called ignorant by a fool like you is a compliment.
    Apparently General McCrstal is ignorant too…because he disagrees with you.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 1

  144. Donald Sensing says:

    @C. Clavin:
    So you have this General advocating a mature look at gun control

    Without discussing the merits of what McChrystal said, I am unsurprised to hear him say it. I am a retired Army officer myself and I will simply say that life in the US military is the least free and most tightly controlled way of living anywhere in the country outside of prison. And there are no greater control freaks than high-ranking officers. It’s simply intuitive.

    In America generally, a resident may carry out an activity of his choice unless society, through law, hinders him for a compelling reason. In the military it is exactly the other way round – you can do what you want as long as you have prior permission from the commanders or regulation.

    I am not arguing that the military should be otherwise, btw. As DD Eisenhower said, “When you put on a uniform, there are certain inhibitions you have to accept.”

    I am arguing that when it comes to national policy or Constitutional issues, the very last person I would consider dispositive or insightful are flag-rank officers. Their default setting is control, control, control, authority, authority, authority.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

  145. de stijl says:

    @john personna:

    Please read the header for the statistic – it’s the rate per 100,000.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  146. john personna says:

    @JKB:

    What’s wrong with you people?

    First you take the anecdote that this woman, with a revolver, successfully defended her family, as proof that everyone should be so armed.

    Then you say wait a second, the fact that she was successful doesn’t matter, she should have been even better armed.

    Gawd. Do you live in constant fear?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 11 Thumb down 0

  147. john personna says:

    @de stijl:

    I believe the rate per 100,000 is what is on the right. The datum on the left is the raw count.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 1

  148. Dave Schuler says:

    @Jenos Idanian #13:

    And that’s the notion that once we have that rational discussion and come to a reasonable conclusion, then we impose that decision on everyone.

    Who said “impose”? I’m more interested in persuasion.

    Cutting through all of the nonsense, people own handguns for a variety of reasons but an important one is that they feel that they need one for self defense. People don’t generally buy bananas or paperweights for self defense although there may be situations in which they’ve been used effectively for that purpose. Why do people buy handguns for self defense? My guess is that they believe that they’ll be able to use them effectively for that purpose.

    If that’s not really the case and handguns are on a statistical basis no more effective than paperweights, that would be important to know. If they are in fact more effective, that’s important to know, too. But anecdotes are not enough to make that determination. Fifteen year old studies of unknowable validity or veracity aren’t enough, either.

    Basically, I’d like to know the facts before I arrive at a conclusion.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 9 Thumb down 0

  149. JKB says:

    @Herb:

    I’m sorry but as self defense is a natural right and keeping and bearing arms is an enumerated right, the burden falls upon you to present evidence that under strict scrutiny I might be deprived of my rights. I don’t have to pass your approval to exercise my rights.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 6

  150. rodney dill says:

    @Jenos Idanian #13: My reference to a larger magazine was somewhat tongue in cheek. Seriously the restricitions of the place she was in may have hampered her aim and the intruder moving to avoid (information I don’t think we have from the story). I haven’t been in that sort of situation, but If I was in imminent danger from and intruder at close range and had a gun, I’m certain I wouldn’t pause in between shots, for at least several shots.

    @john personna:

    She only needed to incapacitate him, which she did with her shots.

    Agreed, I would think the noise and flash at close range, plus the hits she achieved accomplished enough.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 1

  151. Rafer Janders says:

    @CSK:

    But the number of accidental fatal shootings is far less, say, than the number of people killed in auto accidents.

    (A) On a day by day basis, there are tens of millions more people driving than there are shooting guns. So of course there are more auto accidents, because almost everyone drives in a car or bus, but almost everyone doesn’t shoot or get shot at.

    (B) And we constantly try to reduce the number of people killed in auto accidents. We license drivers, make them take tests, mandate seat belts and air bags, put in speed limits, study the safest ways to build highways, pass drunk driving laws, etc. etc. etc.

    Sometimes it seems like the conservative position is that only until we eliminate all deaths from auto accidents, pool drownings, medical errors, and lightning strikes should we be able to address the risk of gun deaths. “There’s a completely unrelated thing that may kill you, so don’t do anything about this other thing which may kill you!”

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 9 Thumb down 1

  152. john personna says:

    @Dave Schuler:

    My link had papers as recent as 2009, but I’d really ask why you think the risk profile for gun ownership would change quickly. Fifteen years? I think my town and my state face much the same risks now as they did then …

    And really we are talking about universals of human nature here. The things driving aggression, defense, fight or flight, go back to the beginning.

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  153. Herb says:

    @JKB: Sorry, dude, we’re talking about the real world here. Not the one inside your head.

    You have the right to bear arms. That right is not unlimited.

    See Heller

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 8 Thumb down 0

  154. Jenos Idanian #13 says:

    @john personna: Actually, john, I lose track of who says what. But let’s look at those two ideas:

    1) Magazine size: bigger magazines jam more, as in Tuscon, so they’re not as much use as you think in mass shootings. They are useful on the range, though, when time is money, and time spent reloading is time spent not shooting. And guns are designed to be balanced with a certain loadout.

    2) Bullet buttons: just good old American ingenuity at play. The ignorant gun-grabbers passed a stupid law which didn’t address any real problem, just that made them feel good about “doing something.” People who actually know a bit about guns looked at the law and found an easy way to work around it. Which they will do as long as the gun-grabbers continue to act out of fear and ignorance.

    So… just what good do these measures do? Citing specific examples won’t help — the Newtown shooter would have had just as many rounds, but split up among more magazines. The Tuscon shooter would have emptied his more-reliable magazine about as fast, and been stopped as he tried to reload.

    And for those bullet buttons? Were I going to go on a shooting rampage and my gun had that, I’d work out a cap or plug to let me trigger the button with a fingertip — and once I had it tested, I’d keep it well away from the gun until I was ready to go shooting. Maybe I’d adapt a ballpoint pen mechanism to do it. It doesn’t seem that complicated a task, and I’m really, really mechanically inept.

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  155. JKB says:

    @Donald Sensing: you can do what you want as long as you have prior permission from the commanders or regulation.

    They love government and in government (military and bureaucrats) you are prescribed in what you can and cannot do. Free people are proscribed, theoretically in to balance the rights and freedoms of all.

    Or to put it simply in deference to some who might read this. In government, you must have prior authorization as by default all things are prohibited. As free citizens, you may do what ever is not prohibited.

    The Progressives, and bureaucrats, hope to build a society of prescription where subjects are only permitted to do what has been approved and do a way with one based on proscription, where free people can do anything not prohibited by just law.

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  156. Donald Sensing says:

    @mantis:
    Drunk man celebrating his birthday busted after fatally shooting 34-year-old man inside Brooklyn diner

    I went to the link and read the story, wherein we find this info that you omitted:

    Police collared Gainer and charged him with murder, criminal possession of a weapon and criminal use of a firearm [my italics].

    This means he had no carry permit (definitions are the charge are here, lawyer’s explanation is here) and was already breaking the law before the fight even started.

    So I am not sure what you think this news story is supposed to prove. Gainer was a felon-in-fact before he even pulled the gun out. How exactly is that related to the Georgia woman defending herself in her own home?

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  157. C. Clavin says:

    @ JP…
    Well…Republicans are world class chicken shits…but that is irrelevant.
    The world they aspire to is one where kindergartens are the place for fire-fights…and you have to be strapped to go see a movie. They think the idea of 25 people like this mom…who couldn’t kill a guy at close range…firing away in a dark theater is a damn good idea.
    They are probably cowards…they are most certainly stupid.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 3

  158. de stijl says:

    @john personna:

    In 2000, there were over 23,000 accidental gun deaths. Please explain how only 28 occurred with those 10 and younger.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

  159. john personna says:

    @Jenos Idanian #13:

    Your “1″ is a very stupid argument. You argue that large magazines all jam, will always jam, are guaranteed to jam.

    Is that what their engineers try for? Is that their ongoing goal in the design of new product?

    And “2″ you just avoid that it works. It adds a few seconds for the bench shooter and more to the walking shooter. You need three hands: one to hold the gun, one to push the button with the tool, one to fish out the new magazine. When you only have two hands, push the button with a tool and fish the magazine must be a sequence and not in parallel.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 0

  160. Jenos Idanian #13 says:

    @Dave Schuler: Who said “impose”? I’m more interested in persuasion.

    My apologies. You didn’t say “impose,” but I’m certain it applies to quite a few people here.

    And don’t underestimate the danger posed by an attacker armed with a banana…

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  161. Alex Knapp says:

    @george and @JKB:

    What you’re not taking into account is the fact that the best means of minimizing the risk of the gun causing the accidental death or injury of a child is at cross-purposes with keeping a gun available and ready at a moments notice. You can do one or the other, you can’t do both. That’s why it’s unwise to own a gun in a house with children.

    And before you protest that you’re absolutely the exception to the rule, look up the Dunning-Kruger effect.

    And again, I’m not talking about laws here. I’m talking about running your own household with wisdom. There are superior means of self-defense that pose fewer risks to your children than firearms.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 11 Thumb down 1

  162. JKB says:

    @john personna:

    No, it is others here who attempted to intimate that she shouldn’t have a firearm because her first shot didn’t burst his skull in 3-D special effects technicolor. I simply pointed out, that thankfully, her 6 shots from a .38 achieved her goal of stopping the attack. And that if others felt the only effective self defense was immediate immobilization then she’d need to upgrade to a .223 rifle.

    I do no doubt expect that this woman having experienced the real world capacity of her firearm will seek one of higher magazine capacity.

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  163. Herb says:

    @Jenos Idanian #13: What you should do, Jenos, instead of figuring out clever ways to bypass gun regulations in your shooting rampage, is maybe look for ways to prevent the guy who wants to go on the rampage from getting a gun.

    (Not saying you want to go on a gun rampage….but when you talk like this, you display an incredible ignorance of the types of people who commit these crimes. They do not have the fortitude to “adapt a ball point mechanism.” Without a weapon with which to kill people, they would be left with smashing furniture or breaking windows.)

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 0

  164. bk says:

    @Donald Sensing:

    I am arguing that when it comes to national policy …, the very last person I would consider dispositive or insightful are flag-rank officers.

    President Eisenhower called. He’d like to have a word with you.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 1

  165. Donald Sensing says:

    @john personna:
    It turns out, scientists were warning on the risks of lead in gas since the 1920s.

    Interesting. I read somewhere fairly recently (since Sandy Hook) that the decades-long (and still ongoing) decrease in violent crime in America happens to have begun not long after effective measures were taken to decrease environmental lead exposure, such as atmospheric lead from car emissions. I don’t have time right now to look it up, but maybe someone with better research skills than I might.

    Some historians say that ingested lead was one of the contributors to the fall of the Roman Empire, but this is much disputed.

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  166. john personna says:

    @de stijl:

    You are in the prime situation where you should concede or walk away.

    When we look up alternate data sets we can find nothing which supports 28 per 100,000

    That site uses a larger age span, 0-19, and notes 219 accidental deaths. People under 20 years of age made up about a quarter of the U.S. population or 70M. Running the math, 219 deaths out of 70M is 0.31 per 100,000 … for the larger age range.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

  167. JKB says:

    @Alex Knapp:

    Please, tell us of these superior self defense methods. I mean besides being white, middle class and able to afford to live in a good suburban neighborhood.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 1

  168. john personna says:

    @Donald Sensing:

    This is fairly new data. When it was US-only the lead connection was more contested. Recently multi-country data has come in, and lined up pretty well.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  169. Jenos Idanian #13 says:

    @Herb: Herb, I don’t own any guns, never have, and can’t imagine I ever will. (I’m fully legally qualified to do so, but choose not to for my own reasons.) And if someone who’s only held and fired a gun once in my life can figure out how to get around that law, then people who do own guns — who regularly disassemble and reassemble them for cleaning and maintenance — can sure as hell do so even better.

    Here, you have the scared ignorant attempting to regulate the calm experts. My money will always be on the experts to prevail.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 5

  170. john personna says:

    @JKB:

    I think you are fantasy arming your fantasy warrior.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 1

  171. Jenos Idanian #13 says:

    @Herb: Also, Herb, I’m very much American in the sense of “show me a rule, and the first thing I’ll do is start figuring out how to get around it.” It’s one of our defining characteristics as a nation.

    Hell, it might be a characteristic of humanity in general.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 1

  172. john personna says:

    @de stijl:

    It is actually kind of sad. The “pack” up-voting with de stijl are also voting against facts they don’t like.

    Rather than following the links and understanding the truth.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 1

  173. C. Clavin says:

    The bottom line to this thread…and the entire gun control issue…is that some are arguing for common sense regulation…others like JKB, Tsar, Indiana Jenos Jones, the NRA, and Mataconis…have zero common sense.
    The ultimate question is whether ideologically driven Congress-critters can be convinced to finally act with common sense and in the interest of protecting citizens…the same common sense SCOTUS has endorsed…or continue to bend over for the NRA and other idiots.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 2

  174. Donald Sensing says:

    @JKB:
    The Progressives, and bureaucrats, hope to build a society of prescription where subjects are only permitted to do what has been approved … .

    As someone once described the Soviet Union – a place where everything that is not permitted is required.

    Or maybe it was the other way round. Works either way.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 2

  175. C. Clavin says:

    Alex Knapp discusses wisdom and JKB in the same sentence. Funny.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  176. Jenos Idanian #13 says:

    @C. Clavin: The bottom line to this thread…and the entire gun control issue…is that some are arguing for common sense regulation…others like JKB, Tsar, Indiana Jenos Jones, the NRA, and Mataconis…have zero common sense.

    Cliffy, I’m still waiting to hear what consists of “common sense regulation.” Because the proposals being tossed around ain’t got a lick of common sense about them.

    And “my side” seems to be demonstrating all the common sense here. We’re the ones who are actually looking at the practicality and efficacy of the proposed “common sense regulations. It’s “your side” that seems to be obsessed with “we have to do SOMETHING, even if it won’t work!”

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 3

  177. JKB says:

    @Herb: You have the right to bear arms. That right is not unlimited.

    True but one of those limitations is not and cannot be that you or some government official gets to decide whether I have a “need” or if my purpose is acceptable. The restrictions must be equitably applied, reasonable and based on articulable facts. Oh and let’s not forget “due process”.

    That is, you may make your case as to why I shouldn’t have a firearm but you must make it based on reality and it is subject to review in a judicial process.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 2

  178. Al says:

    @michael reynolds:

    The problem with your example is that in spite of the regulation (and in spite of the fact that pool ownership is much, much, much lower than gun ownership in the US) kids under ten are still 100 times more likely to die in a home with a pool then in a home with a gun. Logically it would follow that since regulation and additional safety requirements don’t seem to be a good remedy then pool ownership should be banned, no?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 2

  179. C. Clavin says:

    Al…are you really that stupid? Do you really think the rest of us are? A pool is not intended to kill people. Guns, on the other hand, are designed specifically, primarily and exclusively for one purpose — to kill things.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 7 Thumb down 4

  180. C. Clavin says:

    Indiana Jones…Your mommy is calling…it’s time for your Jello.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 2

  181. Jenos Idanian #13 says:

    @C. Clavin: Guns, on the other hand, are designed specifically, primarily and exclusively for one purpose — to kill things.

    No, a gun has a single purpose — to accelerate small objects to great speeds, preferably on a predictable and consistent trajectory. The “purpose” you ascribe to them is that of the person using the gun.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 7

  182. mantis says:

    @Donald Sensing:

    I went to the link and read the story, wherein we find this info that you omitted:

    I didn’t omit anything. I don’t cut and paste entire news stories. You have to follow the link for all the words sometimes. Sorry for the inconvenience.

    This means he had no carry permit (definitions are the charge are here, lawyer’s explanation is here) and was already breaking the law before the fight even started.

    So I am not sure what you think this news story is supposed to prove. Gainer was a felon-in-fact before he even pulled the gun out. How exactly is that related to the Georgia woman defending herself in her own home?

    The point of my posting that story was that while one can find examples of self-defense using guns in the news, you can also find examples of careless, impulsive, and stupid use of guns. Neither example proves anything.

    Now, if you want to explain how it matters whether the murderer legally owned the gun or not, go right ahead. I’m sure the guy he killed will find your explanation illuminating. But remember this, everyone is law abiding until they break the law, and every illegally owned gun was once sold legally.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 0

  183. wr says:

    @Jenos Idanian #13: “For example, in light of Susan Smith and Casey Anthony, we should screen all mothers and preemptively take away their children if we have reason to think the mothers might try to kill them.”

    Hey, stupid — We already do this. Child are taken out of houses deemed to be unfit for them all the time.

    Another massive fail from the dumbest man on the internet.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 7 Thumb down 1

  184. john personna says:

    @JKB:

    So you dispute the automatic weapons ban? The sawed-off shotgun ban?

    So stupid. You know and accept bans on personal weapons. You just, for the purposes of argument, pretend that there are no existing restrictions, and any new idea is unique, the first time in the world.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

  185. C. Clavin says:

    @ Indiana Jones…
    Well actually…there’s nothing to say after Indiana Jones.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

  186. john personna says:

    @Al:

    Are you completely unaware that pools have many restrictions intended to protect the safety of children?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 1

  187. Herb says:

    @JKB:

    “True but one of those limitations is not and cannot be that you or some government official gets to decide whether I have a “need” or if my purpose is acceptable.”

    Um….that’s exactly what those limitations mean.

    @Jenos Idanian #13:

    “Hell, it might be a characteristic of humanity in general.”

    Yeah, you were right the second time there…..

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

  188. Jenos Idanian #13 says:

    @wr: wr, I would never want to usurp your claim to the crown of “dumbest person on the internet.” Show me where EVERY SINGLE MOTHER is examined and questioned and investigated, with the presumption that she is NOT qualified to have/keep her children — which is the standard your side is proposing for guns. (“You don’t get a gun unless you convince us you need it, and that you will use it responsibly.”)

    I’d be thrilled if the gun ownership standard was the same as it was for having children — you’re presumed to be fully qualified to do so without intervention, and only through extraordinary measures are you deprived of your rights.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 4

  189. Al says:

    @C. Clavin:

    You’re the one missing the point, stupid. Pools, whatever their intended purpose, are more likely to kill a kid under ten at home than a gun is.

    @john personna:

    Are you completely unaware that a pool is still more likely to kill a kid at home than a gun is?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 1

  190. Jenos Idanian #13 says:

    @wr: If there’s anything more entertaining than being called stupid by a certified, Grade-A moron, it oughta be illegal.

    It occurs to me, wr, that you never really succeed. You just Fail at Failing.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 4

  191. john personna says:

    @Al:

    What is the sense of that question? Guns and pools both kill children, and so we have regulations on guns and pools.

    We don’t “not” regulate guns because of pools.

    We regulate both.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

  192. john personna says:

    (Really the gun and pool regulations have great similarity with respect to children. In many localities there are requirements that pools be fenced and gated. In many localities there are requirements that guns have child safety locks.)

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

  193. LaMont says:

    @JKB:

    That is, you may make your case as to why I shouldn’t have a firearm but you must make it based on reality and it is subject to review in a judicial process.

    The overwhelming statitics on the matter is the “reality” you speak of. Based on that reality the government is required, by the constitution, to fix it. Afterall, the phrase “well regulated” is in the 2nd amendment! It’s funny how the “don’t tread on my rights” folks like to leave that part out! I don’t think the “reality”/overwhelming data show that guns are being regulated very well at all!

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

  194. Herb says:

    @Al: Back to pools? Sheesh……

    I guess the wheels on the bus really do go round and round.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

  195. C. Clavin says:

    Al…
    You’re so cute.
    And such a big part of the problem.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  196. cd6 says:

    I can’t believe I missed this thread

    I agree with Doug completely

    Those of you who would deny that right to your fellow citizens are essentially saying that it’s okay for criminals to victimize the innocent, and that the innocent don’t have the right to fight back

    This is completely rational and not at all a ridiculous statement. In fact, I take this even further.

    Those of you who try to enact safety regulations and common sense initiatives to prevent accidental shooting and homicides are essentially depriving Americans of their right to receive bullets generaously provided by their fellow, gun weilding Americans. Basically, leftists hate Christmas.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 9 Thumb down 0

  197. Jenos Idanian #13 says:

    @cd6: common sense

    You keep using that phrase. I do not think it means what you think it means.

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  198. cd6 says:

    In the time it took me to read all these comments, only like 4 people were killed by guns in America. God Bless the USA

    I think, for balance, if Doug is going to post a story like this of a homeowner who heroically defended her family, he should also link to the 65 other stories of people shot on the same day as this home defense, whether it was homicide, suicide, or accidental. Assuming they were lucky enough to get in the newspapers.

    Because then you have to ask yourselves, libs, if having this woman as #66 would be worth all your gun grabbing. That 66th murder would be blood on your hands. The first 65 were a necessary cost of living in the free-est, greatest country on Earth

    Checkmate, leftists.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 10 Thumb down 2

  199. stonetools says:

    kids under ten are still 100 times more likely to die in a home with a pool then in a home with a gun.

    ( Shrug)
    Big deal. That just proves that we need to do a better job of regulating both guns AND pools. Even more kids die in car accidents and yet we don’t conclude that we should do away with traffic laws and car safety regulations. Rather, we push for better car safety regulations.

    So I’ve looked at that stat, and guess what? Here’s another stat.

    There is a great report released by the CDC looking at all gun related deaths in children over a 43 year period in 26 industrialized countries. The bad news, and not really surprising news, is that the US is by far the worst by most measures – at least 10 times worse. That means when comparing the likelihood of your child dying from a gun injury, it is about 10 times more likely if you live in the U.S. vs Canada, Australia, Germany, etc.

    The article goes on to say that such deaths are comparatively rare, but it does prove my point. Tighter gun safety laws means fewer kids dying from guns.
    I guess reports like that are why the NRA told their lackeys in Congress to stop funding CDC studies on gun deaths.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

  200. john personna says:

    @cd6:

    Oh … the first 65 were martyrs.

    I understand now. I concede.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

  201. cd6 says:

    @Jenos Idanian #13:

    Hey man, I’m on your side. Us proud patriots needs to stay together

    You’re argument about how restricting magazine size is dumb because sometimes larger magazines jam, so large magazines should stay legal? That totally makes sense and is not at all obfuscating BS.

    In fact, I say we should require even larger magazines, to increase the likelihood of jamming. Then, when would be mass murders are wandering around with 100, 200 rounds at once, we will truly be safe.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 10 Thumb down 0

  202. mantis says:

    The 2nd Amendement: A well regulated militia being necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed.

    I’m curious what people would think of law that requires prospective gun purchasers to provide proof they belong to a well-regulated militia prior to purchase. Hard to argue such a restriction would be unconstitutional, no?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 7 Thumb down 0

  203. anjin-san says:

    Gawd. Do you live in constant fear?

    Bingo. JKB, Jenos, Bithead – fear is all over their comments. Guys like that deal with it with gun culture and military fantasies.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 0

  204. Donald Sensing says:

    @mantis:
    … every illegally owned gun was once sold legally.

    The BATF begs to differ. There is such a thing as an unlicensed dealer, which is the main source of gang guns. Every sale they make is an illegal sale.

    Speaking of criminals buying guns, if you gun controllers were honest and familiar with the facts, you would admit that America does not have a “gun problem,” we have a gang problem.

    America’s horrific murder rate is a result of the transformation of major American cities into Sierra Leone, Somalia, Rwanda and El Salvador. Our murder rate now largely consists of criminals killing criminals.

    As David Kennedy, the head of the Center for Crime Prevention and Control, put it, “The majority of homicide victims have extensive criminal histories. This is simply the way that the world of criminal homicide works. It’s a fact.”

    The elephant in the room that almost no one on any side of guns in the country will admit is that criminal gun use is a race-based issue. According to the BJS, despite a fraction of the total population relative to whites, blacks kill one another in higher absolute, not just relative numbers. The homicide rate among American whites is almost the same as among Canadians. 94 percent of black homicide victims are killed by other blacks (86 percent for whites, showing that interracial murder is pretty rare, for whatever that is worth.)

    The gun problem in America today is almost exclusively about criminal use of firearms by (mainly) young men who illegally obtain firearms specifically to use in criminal acts. And the majority of of those criminal shootings are blacks shooting other blacks.

    That is why I say that the gun control movement is not merely uninformed, it is also inherently racist because it’s only when white grade schoolers or theater goers or US Representatives are shot to pieces that gun controllers get energetic. The two to three Sandy Hooks that occur every week among the black populations of America never draw a protest from the Left.

    The entire purpose of the gun control movement is not to stop shootings generally. It exists to stop shootings of white people. Not one single measure proposed on this site or by Sen. Feinstein will have the slightest effect on the gun-homicide rate among blacks, as even Chicago Police Superintendent Garry McCarthy has said:

    However, McCarthy acknowledged aiming at assault weapons misses the mark when dealing with Chicago’s gang violence. The weapon used is generally a handgun and rarely is it purchased through legal channels. McCarthy wants to target straw purchasing, which is when legal gun buyers will purchase a weapon and then let it loose in the illegal market.

    Straw purchasing, of course, is already illegal.

    The outright stupidity of the Left is illustrated by the vapors they get talking about gun shows. Criminals don’t go to gun shows to buy guns, if for no other reason than gun shows are patrolled by the BATF and local police (if you think not, then you’ve never been to a gun show). The transactions that McCarthy describes are individual, not centrally located, and are already illegal.

    But the Left doesn’t care. It’s only the brown people killing each other, and as long as it stays inside the inner cities it matters not. But by God, when it takes place in whitebread Connecticut or Aurora, Colo., something must be done.

    http://bjs.ojp.usdoj.gov/content/homicide/race.cfm

    http://bjs.ojp.usdoj.gov/content/homicide/tables/oracetab.cfm

    http://bjs.ojp.usdoj.gov/content/homicide/race.cfm

    http://bjs.ojp.usdoj.gov/content/homicide/weapons.cfm

    http://projects.wsj.com/murderdata/#view=all

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 5

  205. josh says:

    “Those of you who would deny that right to your fellow citizens are essentially saying that it’s okay for criminals to victimize the innocent, and that the innocent don’t have the right to fight back.”

    Who is saying this exactly?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 0

  206. mantis says:

    @Donald Sensing:

    The BATF begs to differ. There is such a thing as an unlicensed dealer, which is the main source of gang guns. Every sale they make is an illegal sale.

    Where did those unlicensed dealers get the guns they sell? Unless there is a massive illegal gun manufacturing operation I’m unaware of, I’m pretty sure the vast majority of guns in the US have legal origins. Notice how I used the word “once?” There’s a reason for that.

    Speaking of criminals buying guns, if you gun controllers were honest and familiar with the facts, you would admit that America does not have a “gun problem,” we have a gang problem.

    It’s not an either/or question. We have both a gang problem and a gun problem, and they overlap. By the way, who are you calling a “gun controller,” anyway? I don’t believe I have advocated any gun control, and own guns myself.

    Anyway, you linked to FrontPageMag, which shows what poor sources you get your information from, who write absurdities like “America’s horrific murder rate is a result of the transformation of major American cities into Sierra Leone, Somalia, Rwanda and El Salvador.” You are obviously not equipped to rationally discuss this issue, as you are clearly under the sway of hucksters and propagandists.

    The gun problem in America today is almost exclusively about criminal use of firearms by (mainly) young men who illegally obtain firearms specifically to use in criminal acts.

    And a legal gun market that protects loopholes that allow them to funnel legal guns to those criminal organizations.

    The two to three Sandy Hooks that occur every week among the black populations of America never draw a protest from the Left.

    They do not garner national attention for the most part, but they do get a lot of protest from the left. I work on the south side of Chicago. Feel free to come by and I’ll introduce you to a lot of people on the left who protest the gun violence in our city. The people on the right just want to protect the criminals’ ability to get guns.

    McCarthy wants to target straw purchasing, which is when legal gun buyers will purchase a weapon and then let it loose in the illegal market.

    Straw purchasing, of course, is already illegal.

    We could make straw purchasing far more difficult to accomplish, but the gun lobby prevents any such action, because they want to protect the ability of criminals to get guns and boost sales.

    It’s only the brown people killing each other, and as long as it stays inside the inner cities it matters not. But by God, when it takes place in whitebread Connecticut or Aurora, Colo., something must be done.

    I guarantee you that if a nut with an assault weapon killed twenty black grade schoolers in the inner city, it would get just as much attention. Mass shootings get attention, regardless of who the victims are. Most of the gun violence you talk about is one-at-a-time shootings, which are not interesting to national media.

    Anyway, enjoy fighting the strawman “left” you have decided your opponents all belong to. I’m sure it’s very reassuring to believe.

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  207. stonetools says:

    Getting back to the original post, Doug has somehow managed to get to where he is in life without realizing that anecdote isn’t proof of anything. Its a deficiency that all gun nuts labor under, when they argue their case. Since twe’re arguing anecdotes, let’s go to David Waldman’s Twitter feed, where he has been keeping a informal, partial record of all gun incidents that have happened since Sandy Hook. A sampling:

    10-yo girl, who was shot in the head by a bullet apparently fired during a celebration to mark the New Year, has died. http://bit.ly/Tx7w2W
    .

    Daryl R. Clark shot his wife, Tina M. Clark, before turning the gun on himself. http://bit.ly/Xbn4t1

    Deputies: Mother killed baby, shot self in Ocala http://bit.ly/XbmmMb

    Ok, so do the deaths of a couple, a 10 year old girl, and a mother and her baby outweigh the anecdote about the valiant gun owner and her “rights” yet? But, wait , there’s more:

    Officers say Brueger was cleaning his gun when it went off hitting the 8-year-old in the stomach. http://bit.ly/UqDPOn #protectingthefamily

    Guess he was getting ready to “protect his family” when the gun went off.

    Here’s a story that really has it all: man who defended home w gun in 2010 kills self in accidental shooting in 2012 http://bit.ly/UsidXd

    From the link:

    A man who gained acclaim for shooting and killing a burglar that broke into his home is dead after attempting to demonstrate the “proper way” to shoot yourself in the head.

    Conway police told WPDE that James Gagum, 43, was watching a movie on Aug. 31 with friends when an argument broke out about how one character was handling a gun. Gagum held the pistol to his head and said, “That’s not how it’s done.”

    Gagum then pulled the trigger three times. On the third pull, the gun went off. He was pronounced dead at the scene of what police are calling an accidental shooting

    What’s ironic about the last is that this guy was a “hero of the gun”: till he decided to pull his little demonstration. (Waldman comments that every gun owner is a responsible gun owner until the moment they’re not).

    OK, I’m sure the gun nuts are tired of anecdotes now, because they sure don’t make up a picture of responsible gun owners defending their homes from evildoers . Rather, they show people being all too human around killing machines that don’t forgive mistakes of judgment, recklessness, or depression.
    OK, more stats:

    There have been more than 400 guns deaths since the Newtown massacre on December 14, according to a new interactive project between Slate.com and the anonymous twitter user @gundeaths.

    Keep in mind that in 2010 England had 8 handgun deaths. That’s not per anything. That’s just 8.

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  208. stonetools says:

    Please get my innocuous, but wonderful, comment out of moderation (What the H. triggers that anyway?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

  209. anjin-san says:

    @ JKB

    As you relate, you worked in a bar with bouncers, with other people around. You relate incidents where you didn’t have to lay your hands on another and when you did, you didn’t use a weapon.

    You know what you don’t relate? An incident where you were in imminent threat of death or serous bodily injury.

    I worked in a lot of places over the years. Some had bouncers, some not. I did have an incident where a would be robber tried to brain me with a wine bottle – does that qualify? I guess a real action hero would have put a few rounds in him. As it was, hand-to-hand got the job done.

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  210. wr says:

    @Jenos Idanian #13: Oooh, great comeback there. Wow, you called me stupid. And it only took you two messages to think that one up. You’re really improving.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 0

  211. anjin-san says:

    @ JKB

    Shouldn’t your kids know how about guns, how to handle them, not have a curiosity driven by taboo?

    You might want to go back and re-read my comment on this subject. You are arguing against something I did not say.

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  212. Rob in CT says:

    The two to three Sandy Hooks that occur every week among the black populations of America never draw a protest from the Left.

    It’s the center that basically doesn’t pay attention. “The Left” is pretty anti-gun in general, whether the discussion is Newtown or the “street corner in Chicago” (to borrow Obama’s line). Lots of folks in the cities who deal with (or at least hear about) the violence every day do try – in vain – to do more about it. So your (manufactured) ire is misplaced.

    I’m all for pointing out flaws in regulation proposals because I want whatever we do to be effective, and also I want to minimize any restriction of liberty in exchange for an increase in security (which is the trade-off we make all the time, btw, whether it’s with regard to crime, national security, social security, public health… you name it, the tension between those two things is likely there) . But the rest of your commentary on this is just ranting against your conjured version of “leftists” in your mind. The “leftists” of which I am aware care about the overall level of gun violence. Newtown was one of the brief moments when the rest of the country tunes in for a bit. There’s a reason why the conversation over Newtown shifted rapidly to the overall level of gun violence in America: because that’s the real problem. Spree killings are horrible, but the death toll pales in comparison to the daily drumbeat of violence.

    Which, of course, is merely enabled by easy access to guns. The idea is to see if we can make it a little harder to acquire those guns via illegal means. I’m happy to state clearly that I’m uninterested in making people who already go through background checks and such jump through more hoops. I’d be focusing on the supply side, if I knew more about it. Since I don’t, I’ll sit back and hope to see someone come up with a way of cutting down on the illegal dealers.

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  213. stonetools says:

    @Donald Sensing:

    The BATF begs to differ. There is such a thing as an unlicensed dealer, which is the main source of gang guns. Every sale they make is an illegal sale.

    Does the NRA advocate for strict licensing of those who sell guns at gun shows? Well, actually, they don’t. Here’s a link to their own site in which they assure us that gun shows have nothing to do with gun crime and that unlicensed gun dealers are a “myth”.

    So which is it? Are unlicensed gun dealers a source of illegal guns, or do they not exist at all?

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  214. @stonetools:
    Are unlicensed gun dealers a source of illegal guns, or do they not exist at all?

    In which you prove that you have no idea how the BATF defines “unlicensed dealer.”

    And they do not deal at gun shows.

    Get educated and then maybe we can have a fruitful discussion.

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  215. stonetools says:

    @Donald Sensing:

    I’m educated. I can even count. Can you?

    Gun Deaths in 2011: Japan 48, Great Britain 8, Switzerland 34, Canada 52, Israel 58, Sweden 21, Germany 42, UNITED STATES 10,728

    As to the BATF, if there are no unlicensed gun dealers at gun shows, then why is the BATF patrolling gun shows? For the clean air and the exercise? Here may be a reason why:

    In 2000, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms (ATF) published the “Following the Gun” report.[18] The ATF analyzed more than 1,530 trafficking investigations over a two-and-a-half-year period and found gun shows to be the second leading source of illegally diverted guns in the nation. “Straw purchasing was the most common channel in trafficking investigations.”[19] These investigations involved a total of 84,128 firearms that had been diverted from legal to illegal commerce. All told, the report identified more than 26,000 firearms that had been illegally trafficked through gun shows in 212 separate investigations. The report stated that: “A prior review of ATF gun show investigations shows that prohibited persons, such as convicted felons and juveniles, do personally buy firearms at gun shows and gun shows are sources of firearms that are trafficked to such prohibited persons. The gun show review found that firearms were diverted at and through gun shows by straw purchasers, unregulated private sellers, and licensed dealers. Felons were associated with selling or purchasing firearms in 46 percent of the gun show investigations. Firearms that were illegally diverted at or through gun shows were recovered in subsequent crimes, including homicide and robbery, in more than a third of the gun show investigations.”

    Now the NRA has been busy contesting this , generating their own “studies” that contradict this , but the evidence is overwhelming that criminals generally obtain their guns by exploiting loopholes in the laws-including the “gun show” loophole so tenaciously defended by the gun cultists.

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  216. Al says:

    @john personna:

    If we’re concerned about the safety of kids, accidental gun deaths aren’t at the top of the list, heck they aren’t even in the top five. (Car accidents, falls, poisoning, drowning and fires. Respiratory diseases, on the other hand, kills more than all five combined.) Accidental gun deaths are, as Michael put it way up at the top of the thread, outliers. The point of the question is what are you really concerned about here? Kids or guns?

    The sense that I’m getting from the various responses isn’t kids.

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  217. wr says:

    @Al: Yes, Al, we secretly all hate kids almost as much as we hate freedom. That’s why we want to take your guns away, so you won’t be free and we’ll be able to watch kids die in pools, which gives us all a good chuckle.

    What is it about guns that makes their devotees turn so stupid whenever the subject comes up?

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  218. Rob in CT says:

    The point has already been made: we regular cars, pools, substances that can poison people, and we have fire codes. Falls… not sure what could be done there. Respiratory diseases… relevant because we don’t try and treat illness in children? What?

    Bringing up those other causes of death is fine to put numbers in perspective. But as an argument against regulation, it’s really dumb. We tend to regulate dangerous things.

    Beyond regulation, I think this fight boils down to convincing people not to excercise their right to bear arms. Reynolds wants to work that via shaming. I’m not inclined in that direction, but I think pointing out the stats on the dangers of guns is a good idea. Even if more kids drown in pools (if/when people you know are thinking about getting a pool, by all means point this out).

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  219. Al says:

    @Brett: Statistically speaking 80% of all people shot with handguns survive; they’re not really the best self-defense weapons and definitely not the best weapons for killing anyone. A much better option would be a shotgun (where only 20% of those shot survive). Regardless, the gun did its job pretty effectively and stopped the intruder. Looking at ballistics, your average handgun round does not do a whole lot of tissue damage, a well aimed shot to the spine or heart will do a lot more damage than a shot to the stomach, obviously.

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  220. george says:

    @Rafer Janders:

    OK, didn’t talk to a stats prof, but I did just chat to two of the PhD quants on the trading desk. They’re certain I’m right, that when it comes to fallible human beings with no ability to predict the future and a natural human tendency to overestimate their own competence and underestimate the odds of disaster striking them, that you have to trust the general statistics more than your individual guess about your ability to beat the odds.

    Wow, long thread. Not sure if this is now a tangeant, but here goes: by that argument, anyone with a BMI of say 30 is obese, and should exercise carefully and cut back what they’re eating, even if they’re a professional athlete who’s personal assessment is that they’re lean and in excellent condition. The fact is, we all disregard national stats for our individual cases all the time, often for excellent reasons. And I note your PhD quants, like the professional statistician on our engineering staff, aren’t arguing that I’m wrong about the statistics, just that they don’t feel the person is capable of assessing it properly. Which I’ll concede is possible – you might not recognize a cracked flange, or how to test for it, if you don’t have the background. My sense is that gun safety assessment is closer to checking yourself in the mirror to see if your BMI of 30 is lean muscle or a huge belly, than specialized technical knowledge like materials testing.

    @john personna:

    That is a contradiction, george.

    Your position is that individual data trumps statistics.

    You can’t revert to statistics. lol.

    Actually no, we’re just arguing about the difference between heterogenic sampling means vs population mean. The argument has always been about expectations, the question is whether a national average is a useful measure for an individual, or whether they should assess their own circumstances (I’d argue that for something like firearms they should).

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  221. Al says:

    @Todd: Your comment about “high powered” rifles is not entirely correct. Today’s .223 rounds (fired from your so-called “sexy” guns) are engineered to stop inside of the target. The AR-15 and similar rifles are the arm of choice for police and SWAT for that exact reason – the round will not over-penetrate a target.

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  222. grumpy realist says:

    Look at how many people get killed each year by firearms in the US. Now compare the number with those killed by knives. See the difference?

    The problem is, too many Americans have this misty-eyed idealized image of “standing mah GROWND!” against your evil burglar/rapist/whatever. The fact that that gun is just as likely to prove a tempation to their hormone-addled, bullied-at-school, suicidally depressed teenage son somehow never enters into their calculations.

    Until, of course, there’s a dead body on the floor and the parents wringing their hands: “we never would have DREAMED….!”

    Go check the statistics for suicide deaths by gun of individuals in families with guns. It’s not pretty.

    But still, it’s all an acceptable price to pay for your freedom to wave around a large phallic symbol, right?

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  223. Tony W says:

    @stonetools:

    Gun Deaths in 2011: Japan 48, Great Britain 8, Switzerland 34, Canada 52, Israel 58, Sweden 21, Germany 42, UNITED STATES 10,728

    See, American exceptionalism is not a myth!

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  224. anjin-san says:

    @JKB

    You are working pretty hard to tell us all how you have been there and done that. Exactly how many times have you defended your life or that of your loved ones with a gun?

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  225. cd6 says:

    @Al:

    Statistically speaking 80% of all people shot with handguns survive; they’re not really the best self-defense weapons and definitely not the best weapons for killing anyone. A much better option would be a shotgun (where only 20% of those shot survive). Regardless, the gun did its job pretty effectively and stopped the intruder. Looking at ballistics, your average handgun round does not do a whole lot of tissue damage, a well aimed shot to the spine or heart will do a lot more damage than a shot to the stomach, obviously.

    I freely admit I have no idea what you’re even arguing here. Hanguns aren’t effective? So we can ban them without comprimising people’s ability to defend themselves, yes?

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  226. JKB says:

    @anjin-san: a would be robber tried to brain me with a wine bottle

    Well, there you go, either you didn’t consider the would-be robber an imminent threat of death or serious bodily injury, or you had the size, strength, health and skills to use your hand-to-hand, or you fell back on all you had left since you did consider him an imminent threat of death or serious bodily injury but you didn’t have a firearm to stop the threat. So you got lucky, you were big enough, he was cumbersome enough or unmotivated enough so that your “hand-to-hand” machismo worked.

    But enough about you, what if the bartender had been a small woman? an older man with health problems? What if the “would-be robber” had been intent on killing you. Or raping you if you were a woman?

    Wouldn’t you like to have capability to fall back on that doesn’t depend on he-man skills or some happenstance of size and strength?

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  227. john personna says:

    @george:

    Actually no, we’re just arguing about the difference between heterogenic sampling means vs population mean. The argument has always been about expectations, the question is whether a national average is a useful measure for an individual, or whether they should assess their own circumstances (I’d argue that for something like firearms they should).

    Well george, if people could access their own circumstances, and make the correct decision, what is the expected outcome?

    Shouldn’t on that basis, and your logic, owners be safer than non-owners?

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  228. anjin-san says:

    @Alex Knapp

    Are you as touched as I am by the sudden concern conservatives have that poor minority folk have the ability to defend themselves?

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  229. JKB says:

    @cd6: Hanguns aren’t effective?

    You misread his statement. Handguns are not effective at killing, assuming the person wounded reaches an OR, not just an ER, relatively quickly.

    Handguns are proven to be effective in stopping imminent threats of death or serious bodily injury while being compact and relatively easy to carry so they are available when needed. Which makes them good for self defense where if your intent is only to stop the threat.

    Firearms are deadly force because it is reasonable to believe someone at which a firearm is discharged can die, not that they will die.

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  230. anjin-san says:

    @ JKB

    what if the bartender had been a small woman?

    She would have stayed behind the bar, and would have been safe – this incident took place outside of the bar area.

    “hand-to-hand” machismo

    How is having martial arts training “machismo”? I also note your somewhat mocking jibe at my “training” in an earlier comment.

    So you got lucky

    No, I had experience and training. It may not be the kind of experience and training you value, but that certainly does not mean it is without value in the real world.

    Wouldn’t you like to have capability to fall back on that doesn’t depend on he-man skills or some happenstance of size and strength?

    Nope. Don’t feel the need.

    Not surprisingly, you are missing the point. In 25 years of working in a job that is statistically dangerous, that involves the risk of confrontation every time you go to work, I only was in one situation where I really felt I was in serious danger of being injured, and I resolved it without a gun. I knew a lot of other folks that worked in bars back then, and I don’t recall ANY of them being seriously injured in a violent situation while at work. I also don’t know of a single one that brought a gun to work.

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  231. stonetools says:

    @anjin-san:

    After Trayvon Martin was killed by Zimmerman, the NRA did not insist that the solution was to arm all minority youth with guns, so that they could defend themselves from “bad guys” with guns. Curious , that.

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  232. Rob in CT says:

    They didn’t propose a solution, because they didn’t see a problem.

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  233. george says:

    @john personna:

    Well george, if people could access their own circumstances, and make the correct decision, what is the expected outcome?

    Shouldn’t on that basis, and your logic, owners be safer than non-owners?

    For the population as a whole, I’ve no idea. For individual gun owners, some will be, some won’t be. Again, its like recommending action for someone with a BMI of 30. For most they should cut back on what they’re eating, and exercise carefully so as not to give themself a heart attack. For an NHL player (average BMI very close to 30), cutting back on how much they’re eating (unless they cut back on their exercise … which I guess they did this year) will lead to negative health consequences. Unless you have a homogenous population (like flipping say a million pennies), the various sub-population means typically won’t be the same as the overall population mean.

    In the rural municpality (in Canada) where I live, population about five thousand, there have been no fire arm deaths in several decades, though almost everyone (like most rural Canadians) has at least a rifle, and most have a shotgun. So for this population I’d argue that they’re capable of making the correct decision. There are other places where the accidental death rate is much higher, and for those sub populations, the ability to make the correct decision seems lacking. It makes no sense to use a global population average to describe very different circumstances (though actually the insurance companies do that with BMI, lumping Olympic level athletes together with huge bellied couch potatoes – and I guess it works for them, because their profits increase by being able to categorize fit people as obese and charge accordingly).

    Ultimately, I’m pretty confident of my ability to practice gun safety, as I am of my neighbors down the road, and so far results bear me out. The circumstances of someone living in a gang house in Toronto don’t enter my personal calculations, but do enter the global (national) average – which is why I don’t think it would be particularly relevant.

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  234. anjin-san says:

    @ stonetools

    Yea, Zimmermann. A classic case of gun-driven false courage leading to a tragedy. And, surprise, surprise, he seems to be something of a hero to commenters on this very thread…

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  235. stonetools says:

    Garry Wills dismantles the gun cultists’ interpretation of the Second Amendment here:

    An excerpt:

    Only fantasts can think the self-styled militias of our day are acting under the mandate of, or even in accord with, the Second Amendment. Only madmen, one would think, can suppose that militias have a constitutional right to levy war against the United States, which is treason by constitutional definition (Article III, Section 3, Clause 1). Yet the body of writers who proclaim themselves at the scholarly center of the Second Amendment’s interpretation say that a well-regulated body authorized by the government is intended to train itself for action against the government. The proclaimer of the Standard Model himself says that the National Guard cannot be the militia intended by the Second Amendment since that militia was meant to oppose the government, and the National Guard is required to swear an oath of loyalty to the government that funds and organizes it. 45

    RTWT. He goes to say that there may be a right to self defense in common law or statute. But it isn’t in the Second Amendment.

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  236. anjin-san says:

    @ JKB

    I ask again – exactly how many times have you defended your life or that of your loved ones with a gun? Do you have any first hand experience, or are you just spouting theory?

    And please don’t tell us how you are buddies with some top cop. I know an astronaut, a bunch of rock stars, and some professional ballplayers. It does not give me any expertise by osmosis at what they do.

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  237. Al says:

    @Some other impostor Al:

    This town ain’t big enough for the two of us.

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  238. stonetools says:

    In the rural municpality (in Canada) where I live,

    Oh, Canada. What the USA would be without the NRA or the South.
    Canadian firearms regulation ( or as the NRA would call it, tyranny):

    All licensing and registration is managed by the RCMP’s Canadian Firearms Program (CFP), under the Deputy Commissioner Policing Support Services (PSS). In the Canadian system, there are three classes of firearms and firearm licences: non-restricted, restricted and prohibited. Prohibited firearms are not actually “prohibited”, as the name might imply, but do require the prohibited clause for the type of firearm that is owned. As of December 1, 1998, the prohibited clause must be grandfathered to acquire or possess prohibited firearms. New prohibited licences are available only at the discretion of the Chief Firearms Officer of the province or the RCMP. See Classification of firearms below for complete details on prohibited, restricted and non-restricted firearms.

    Individuals who wish to possess or acquire firearms in Canada must have a valid possession-acquisition, or possession-only, licence (PAL/POL); either of these licences allows the licensee to purchase ammunition. The PAL is distributed exclusively by the RCMP and is generally obtained in the following three steps:

    Safety training: To be eligible to receive a PAL, all applicants must successfully complete the Canadian Firearms Safety Course[16] (CFSC) for a non-restricted licence, and the Canadian Restricted Firearms Safety Course[17] (CRFSC) for a restricted licence; the non-restricted class is a prerequisite to the restricted licence. The RCMP publishes information on the locations and availability of these courses.[18]
    Applying for a licence: Currently only one type of licence is available to new applicants, the possession-acquisition licence (PAL). People can request a PAL by filling out Form CAFC 921.[19]
    Security screening: Background checks and investigations are performed. All applicants are screened, and a mandatory 28-day waiting period is imposed on first-time applicants, but response time may be longer.[20]

    Licences are typically valid for five years and must be renewed prior to expiry to maintain all classes. Once licensed, an individual can apply for a firearm transfer;[21] and an authorization to transport[22] (ATT) for restricted firearms.

    I and most sane people would settle for this in a heartbeat.
    There have been six school shootings in Canada. The combined total of deaths was fewer than those in the Sandy Hook massacre alone.

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  239. george says:

    @stonetools:

    Oh, Canada. What the USA would be without the NRA or the South.
    Canadian firearms regulation ( or as the NRA would call it, tyranny):

    Indeed. I’m not against limiting firearms, I find the Canadian system works quite well (I’ve lived in both Canada and the US, and prefer Canadian firearm laws). I just don’t think global population means are a particularly useful tool for an individual to make a choice with in important matters. If I lived in a Canadian city, I probably wouldn’t have any firearms. On the farm, I have a rifle and a shotgun. Different conditions require different solutions.

    Similarly, conditions in rural Minnesota aren’t the same as in Miami, and a global average isn’t useful for a citizen of either to make personal decisions.

    Though an overarching law (like the Canadian system) is a good idea. In Canada there’s been talk about having different gun laws for rural and urban districts, largely based on the differences in need and danger. Most people don’t like the idea (ie those who want tighter laws want them universal, as do those who want looser laws, or those who like the current situation), but I kind of think it makes sense in a practical way (I find it hard to generate a lot of ideological feelings about firearm regulation – we already agree to limit weapons … you can’t buy an IED for home improvement or to keep the neighborhood kids off of your lawn, its just a question of where the line should be drawn).

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  240. Rafer Janders says:

    @Donald Sensing:

    The BATF begs to differ. There is such a thing as an unlicensed dealer, which is the main source of gang guns. Every sale they make is an illegal sale.

    And where did the unlicensed dealer get his guns? At some point, the gun manufacturer which made the gun in the first place legally sold it to someone.

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  241. Rafer Janders says:

    @wr:

    What is it about guns that makes their devotees turn so stupid whenever the subject comes up?

    To be fair to guns, some of these people were already stupid.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 7 Thumb down 1

  242. Rafer Janders says:

    @stonetools:

    Gun Deaths in 2011: Japan 48, Great Britain 8, Switzerland 34, Canada 52, Israel 58, Sweden 21, Germany 42, UNITED STATES 10,728

    Look, to me all this proves is that Americans are much, much better shots….

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  243. Rafer Janders says:

    @Al:

    Statistically speaking 80% of all people shot with handguns survive; they’re not really the best self-defense weapons and definitely not the best weapons for killing anyone. A much better option would be a shotgun (where only 20% of those shot survive).

    You make a good point: handguns are terrible for self-defense and can be banned with no real harm to people’s ability to defend their homes, so long as they can have a shotgun. As you yourself argue, no one really needs a handgun or should rely on it for self-defense.

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  244. C. Clavin says:

    “…I ask again – exactly how many times have you defended your life or that of your loved ones with a gun?”

    For that matter…exactly how many times have you used a gun to deter a tyrannical Government?

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  245. Rafer Janders says:

    @george:

    Ultimately, I’m pretty confident of my ability to practice gun safety, as I am of my neighbors down the road, and so far results bear me out.

    “The Dunning–Kruger effect is a cognitive bias in which unskilled individuals suffer from illusory superiority, mistakenly rating their ability much higher than average. This bias is attributed to a metacognitive inability of the unskilled to recognize their mistakes.

    “Actual competence may weaken self-confidence, as competent individuals may falsely assume that others have an equivalent understanding. David Dunning and Justin Kruger conclude, ‘the miscalibration of the incompetent stems from an error about the self, whereas the miscalibration of the highly competent stems from an error about others.’

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dunning–Kruger_effect

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  246. Rafer Janders says:

    @george:

    Ultimately, I’m pretty confident of my ability to practice gun safety, as I am of my neighbors down the road, and so far results bear me out.

    FORTUNE — Is there anyone over the age of 16 holding a valid license who doesn’t believe he is an above-average driver? In a study conducted some time ago, 93% of American students thought their driving skills were better than half of those surveyed — a mathematical impossibility that has not changed.

    Psychologists have a name for it: illusive superiority — the cognitive bias that causes people to overestimate their positive qualities and underestimate their negative ones.

    http://money.cnn.com/2011/09/21/autos/toyota_auto_safety.fortune/index.htm

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  247. Rafer Janders says:

    @george:

    Ultimately, I’m pretty confident of my ability to practice gun safety, as I am of my neighbors down the road, and so far results bear me out.

    Ultimately, I was pretty confident of my ability to always beat the stock market, as I was of my colleagues down the hall, and results bore us out — right until September 2008.

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  248. george says:

    @Rafer Janders:

    Psychologists have a name for it: illusive superiority — the cognitive bias that causes people to overestimate their positive qualities and underestimate their negative ones.

    Did you miss the part about results bearing me out? I’ve lived with firearms for more decades than I care to admit, including daily use at times on the farm, without incident. The same is true for my neighbors – as I said, population about 5000, almost every family having a firearm, no incidents in several decades. I use the same practices most of those people use, so there’s a fair amount of evidence that what we’re doing is, in fact safe. If you see danger in what we’re doing despite a complete lack of any incidents, then I suggest you’re the one suffering from confirmation bias.

    Its not an illusion if result confirm the assessment. Again, if I look into the mirror and see a world class athlete, then its confirmation bias. If Michael Phelps does the same, he’s not suffering from an illusion, because his results match his impression.

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  249. C. Clavin says:

    I’ve always grouped Skiing, Driving, and Sex as activities in which most participants believe they excel, but in which most participants are actually clueless.
    Thanks to George I will now add Gun Safety.

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  250. Rafer Janders says:

    @george:

    Did you miss the part about results bearing me out?

    And so far, results have borne out my belief that I’m actually pretty good at drunk driving. I’ve never had an accident while driving drunk, nor have any of my friends — no accidents in over two decades behind the wheel. So while statistically drunk driving may be unsafe, I think I can risk it.

    No one is ever a screw-up…until they are.

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  251. george says:

    @Rafer Janders:

    And so far, results have borne out my belief that I’m actually pretty good at drunk driving. I’ve never had an accident while driving drunk, nor have any of my friends — no accidents in over two decades behind the wheel. So while statistically drunk driving may be unsafe, I think I can risk it.

    No one is ever a screw-up…until they are.

    So Michael Phelps is suffering from confirmation bias when he looks into the mirror and thinks he sees a great athlete, because statistically most men think they’re above average athletes?

    I don’t know how to explain the difference between an individual value and an arithmetic mean any better than I have, perhaps talk to your Phd friends.

    And though I hate to bring it up, because I don’t think the argument needs it, the statistics say in Canada that the average firearm owner has no firearm mishaps in his or her lifetime. So if I did follow your reasoning, then I’d argue I’d need some sort of confirmation bias to think I might have some mishap, because the average says I won’t. My argument is though that average is misleading, because it covers a wide range of circumstances, and so it gives very little useful information. You, on the other hand, given your view of statistics, should conclude no Canadian, whereever they live or however they handle their firearm, should expect a mishap, because the average person has no mishaps. Think about it.

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  252. george says:

    @Rafer Janders:

    And if you’re curious just how the odds of an average firearm owning Canadian is to having a mishap, just Google Stats Canada, they publish the stats in the justice department section. Note I’m not just talking about death, but any injuries. Its a real longshot to get injured with a firearm in Canada. Statistically nothing to worry about, if the average is all you worry about. You’d have to be suffering from some sort of illusion to think you should worry …

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  253. KansasMom says:

    Jenos must not have kids because trust me, every time you take your kid to the doctor you are being assessed for your fitness as a parent. Car seat instillation, smoke alarms, food choices, exposure to smoking or drinking. And if your kid has an actual injury as opposed to just an illness or well child check the questions can be quite ruthless.

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  254. john personna says:

    @george:

    Canadian statistics are about where you’d expect them. They are between the more gun-free Americans and the more gun-controlling Europeans.

    Geez, you went on about US statistics, which include a lot of urban handgun ownership, and then you spring on the end that you are a Canadian with long guns in a small town. Of course US handgun statistics do not apply to you.

    On the other hand, I’m quite sure that for families in all conditions like yours, but without long guns, the non gun owners would have lower all-cause moralities. Why? Because family fights and suicides are just that much harder to pull off.

    People do NOT make rational decisions about those things. Or maybe they buy a gun because they do want suicide to be an option. Take your choice.

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  255. john personna says:

    @george:

    (Really, the more you say “statistics do not apply to me” the more you make me think that you just cannot grasp them. Of course you are part of a composite. If you want to really nail it down you have a demographic and a peer group. To say “none of that applies, I am unique” is absurd.)

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  256. george says:

    @john personna:

    Really, the more you say “statistics do not apply to me” the more you make me think that you just cannot grasp them. Of course you are part of a composite. If you want to really nail it down you have a demographic and a peer group. To say “none of that applies, I am unique” is absurd.)

    I’ve never said “statistics do not apply to me”. I’ve said that applying a population arithmetic mean to an individual case may be extremely misleading with a very hetrogenous population. If you don’t understand the difference between those two statements, then there’s really nothing I can do but suggest you speak to a statistician. And just to be sure (its been a while since I took my undergrad stats courses), I spoke with our company statistician, who assures me that you and Rafer are making the mistake of applying tests and results useful for homogenous populations to hetrogenous populations. There are a wide variety of statistical tests to be used for various distributions – the arithmetic mean isn’t always a useful one. For instance, consider a bilateral distribution (two sharp peaks about the mean).

    But I think we’re just going to have to let this drop, we’re both repeating ourselves, and arguing about something which really isn’t opinion, but is actually a formal system (ie math). I don’t seem to be able to convince you, and I’m assured that my basic understanding is correct by someone with a graduate degree in statistics and many years of applying it to engineering systems where an error would result in newsworthy collapses (bridges falling into rivers make for good headlines), so your arguments in return aren’t convincing me.

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  257. george says:

    Opps, meant bimodal distribution – really need an edit for these. Anyway, have fun, I’ll leave you folks the last word.

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  258. bill says:

    i think it’s nice that she took out some trash- hopefully he died so we don’t have to pay for his medical bills. what a loser, fresh out of jail and didn’t learn his lesson.

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  259. matt says:

    Once again here’s a good read for y’all

    http://ordinary-gentlemen.com/blog/2013/01/great-fact-little-fact/

    Here’s a Harvard study “WOULD BANNING FIREARMS REDUCE
    MURDER AND SUICIDE?”

    http://www.law.harvard.edu/students/orgs/jlpp/Vol30_No2_KatesMauseronline.pdf

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  260. LC says:

    I love when Doug writes something asinine, gets pushback, makes an even stupider defense than his original argument, gets shredded by commenters, and then vanishes to churn out his next glibertarian fantasy nonsense post, thus starting the cycle anew. Predictable as the sunrise.

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  261. Jenos Idanian #13 says:

    @john personna: No, I’m not saying she failed. I’m saying she was lucky — she emptied her gun into the guy, and he was still enough of a threat that she had to bluff about having more rounds. She needed either a more powerful weapon or more rounds to reduce the luck she needed.

    I really, really don’t like depending on luck in cases like this.

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  262. Jenos Idanian #13 says:

    @anjin-san: Bingo. JKB, Jenos, Bithead – fear is all over their comments. Guys like that deal with it with gun culture and military fantasies.

    Oh, that is rich beyond belief. I have proclaimed here my belief in the rights of Americans to own guns — including the scary minorities — and have declared that I don’t own any myself. I am calling for a nation of citizens to be as well-armed as they like, while I go about totally unarmed, and I’m quite happy with that.

    Meanwhile, you and your ilk are TERRIFIED of the thought of other Americans owning and carrying around guns, so terrified that you want to take them away from anyone who doesn’t meet your exacting standards of who should be allowed to have guns, and only if they have a reason you feel like accepting.

    And I’m the scared one? You’re the ones who are hysterical.

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  263. Jenos Idanian #13 says:

    @KansasMom: Jenos must not have kids because trust me, every time you take your kid to the doctor you are being assessed for your fitness as a parent. Car seat instillation, smoke alarms, food choices, exposure to smoking or drinking. And if your kid has an actual injury as opposed to just an illness or well child check the questions can be quite ruthless.

    I’m talking about the default position. With guns, the liberal argument is that no one should have them unless they qualify AND can present a good argument. With kids, you’re assumed to be a fit parent until something indicates otherwise.

    Are you really that stupid? Are you raising your kids to be that stupid? In your case, then perhaps we should apply the same standard to parenting that you want to put on guns. “You want to have kids? Are you fit to be a parent? Why do you want children? How many do you want? If you give us answers we like, we’ll let you have them. But every couple of years you’ll have to re-certify yourselves as parents, or we’ll take the kids away and deny you permission to have more kids.”

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  264. anjin-san says:

    @ Jenos

    Meanwhile, you and your ilk are TERRIFIED of the thought of other Americans owning and carrying around guns, so terrified that you want to take them away from anyone who doesn’t meet your exacting standards of who should be allowed to have guns

    Kindly show where I said anything remotely like that.

    I go about totally unarmed

    I said “gun culture” You’ve prattled on about guns at great length. Gun culture. It has been noted by others you are the sort of person who talks the talk, but does not walk the walk – no need for me to go over that ground. You don’t actually have to own guns to be weird about them. Just look at your Zimmerman fetish.

    You also fancy yourself a military buff. My experience is that guys over 30 who are too interested in gun and military lore tend to be a bit off. Sometimes more than a bit. You and Florack are textbook cases.

    the liberal argument is that no one should have them unless they qualify AND can present a good argument

    Well, that is the cartoon liberal argument. Reality is a bit more complicated, which is why you are struggling here. Read my comments, and those of Michael Reynolds. There is quite a bit of airspace between them.

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  265. JKB says:

    @anjin-san:

    Well, since you seem to have worked 25 years in just about every field ever discussed here, then you might realize that one does not discuss such matters in public or with persons they don’t know.

    But you can go with the assumption that I have not used deadly force as far these discussion are concerned. I don’t mind a bit.

    But please give me an example of where my statements have required that I have used deadly force to validate them?

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  266. KansasMom says:

    @Jenos Idanian #13: @Jenos Idanian #13: Pretty sure I never said a word about guns. There are more than five yet less than ten guns in my house at this moment, as if that mattered. My only point is that parents are assessed for fitness all day every day. I’m a mom and a nurse. A bruise in a strange place results in a call to social services unless there is a plausible explanation. An abnormal break, likewise. A parent who smokes in a house with an asthmatic child gets some attention.

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  267. JKB says:

    @Rafer Janders:

    You don’t seem to understand the concept of self defense. As I stated earlier, handguns have proven to be very useful in stopping imminent threats of death or serious bodily injury. Sure a shotgun or rifle can stop threats more effectively but they take up a lot of room, are cumbersome and difficult to conceal. Carrying concealed being the best way to keep from spooking the Progressives.

    Here is a doctor discussing gunshot wounds. It’ll put away some of your misconceptions.

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  268. anjin-san says:

    Well, since you seem to have worked 25 years in just about every field ever discussed here,

    I’m not sure what you are talking about.

    one does not discuss such matters in public or with persons they don’t know.

    Really? Is there some kind of rule about this? People disclose all sorts of things in here all the time. I don’t really see how this is different.

    But please give me an example of where my statements have required that I have used deadly force to validate them?

    For one thing, I did not ask about deadly force. I asked if you had used a gun for defense. That might entail simply pointing a weapon at someone. You seem to be very caught up in thinking about threats and how deal with them. I am curious if you have ever seen the elephant. You seem to think a gun is a magical self defense shield, and that is not the way people with real world self defense experience think.

    The people I know with actual expertise will tell you you never know till you get there. You can take gun courses, you can go to the range, you can read the NRA blog till your eyeballs bleed. You can do all that, and still freeze in a critical situation. You can discover that you are a coward, gun or no. You can panic, and become just as dangerous as an armed criminal. You can become a victim of false courage, with tragic results. You can make an incorrect threat evaluation, also with tragic results.

    All good reasons for the average person not to carry a gun.

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  269. Jenos Idanian #13 says:

    @KansasMom: Everything you say is correct, but it in no way contradicts what I said: the default position is that one is a qualified parent, unless something develops to contradict that. The examples you cited are some of the “somethings” I referred to.

    You own between 5 and 10 guns? Congrats. And you have children in your home? Read above, and there are those who say that means you should be deprived of either the guns or the children (or both). I’m not one of them. I’m assuming you take appropriate precautions to prevent tragedy, and will trust you on that.

    You choose to own guns, for your own reasons. I choose not to own guns, for my own reasons. And that’s just how it should be.

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  270. Jenos Idanian #13 says:

    @anjin-san: I said “gun culture” You’ve prattled on about guns at great length. Gun culture. It has been noted by others you are the sort of person who talks the talk, but does not walk the walk – no need for me to go over that ground. You don’t actually have to own guns to be weird about them.

    No, I’m reactive. I tend to think that whatever position you take, it’s probably the wrong one. On the issue of guns, I didn’t really care much one way or the other until I noticed that the left was positively bat-crap crazy about getting rid of them. I figured that if you folks got that worked up about something, it could be worth my time to educate myself a little and see just what the facts were.

    And, surprise surprise, the more I studied, the more I realized that — once again — the left was totally full of crap. And while some gun owners are a bit creepy, the vast, vast majority are far more sane, stable, and trustworthy than those who want to disarm people.

    Besides, it does a number on the standard tactic of “you don’t know what you’re talking about.” Which means you have to go to Plan B — “you obviously obsess too much about these things to be rational.” So your opponents either know too little or too much to be listened to, while you know “just enough” to be right.

    Is that about it, Goldilocks?

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  271. Jenos Idanian #13 says:

    @anjin-san: All good reasons for the average person not to carry a gun.

    Nice argument — if you were trying to persuade people. But that’s not what you’re doing. You’re trying to rationalize your intent — which is to impose your opinion and judgment on all others.

    You make it clear what you want to do — increase the constraints on people to own and carry guns. You want to have the government enforce your beliefs. Which means that you aren’t interested in people freely choosing to heed your advice, but persuading people to accept the imposition of it. “Persuading” means that those being persuaded have a choice on whether or not to accept it.

    You’re trying to deny them that choice. Therefore, rationalizing.

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  272. JKB says:

    @anjin-san: All good reasons for the average person not to carry a gun.

    You sure can, you can train, practice, exercise, be a champion on the combat course and then find it all goes out the window at the critical moment. You know who this could happen to? Everybody. Do you think those cops that shot up that street in NY when surprised by a the guy drawing down on them, did that due to their training? Did you know that you can’t even be sure how you’ll perform the second time you have a situation because things change. Or third.

    But your argument would be that police, soldiers, security guards, private citizens should carry firearms until they’ve had to shoot a few people to know if they will perform in the situation. Surely, you see that is untenable?

    On the other hand, as the cited story in this post reveals, in extremis people will act appropriately to stop imminent threats to themselves and others.

    I asked if you had used a gun for defense. That might entail simply pointing a weapon at someone.

    Perhaps you are confused. A firearm is deadly force under the law. Pointing a firearm at someone is a crime. Unless you can justify it as being in response to an imminent threat of death or serious bodily injury In which case, if someone stops their threat before you discharge the weapon, you have a win-win. I try very hard to avoid threats of imminent death, but that doesn’t mean not having the capability to stop them if some other person having free will decides to impose one.

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  273. anjin-san says:

    @ jenos

    Now all you have to do is show where I’ve called for “getting rid of guns.” Good luck with that.

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  274. anjin-san says:

    On the other hand, as the cited story in this post reveals, in extremis people will act appropriately to stop imminent threats to themselves and others.

    Not at all. It shows that in this particular instance, that is what happened. How does that have anything to do with any other situation?

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  275. James W says:

    Interesting arguments here. Looking through some statistics I came across these numbers:

    Swimming pool/spa drowning deaths of children under 5 (2007-2009 annual Average): 293
    Under 15 : 390
    Swimming pool/spa emergency department-treated submersion injuries of children under 5 (2009-2011 annual average): 4108
    Under 15: 5200

    These statistics where found here: http://www.cpsc.gov/cpscpub/prerel/prhtml12/12186.html

    Average firearm fatalities from 2008-2009 under 5: 87
    Under 15: 381
    Average firearm nonfatal injuries from 2008-2009 under 5: 194
    Under 15: 1318

    This can be found at: http://www.childrensdefense.org/child-research-data-publications/data/protect-children-not-guns-2012.pdf

    Between 47-53 Million Households had guns in 2010 (http://www.justfacts.com/guncontrol.asp)

    About 5.4 Million households had in-ground pools in 2012 (http://thinkprogress.org/climate/2012/07/30/595771/homes-with-swimming-pools-use-49-more-elctricty-than-homes-without-but-is-the-pool-really-to-blame/)

    I could not find a number of homes with other pools or spa’s but even if you estimated 5 times as many households with other pools or spas you would only be at 32.4 million.

    So looking at these numbers it seems as though we should be working harder to keep swimming pools out of homes and neighborhoods that have children under 5 and spend as much time teaching and training children over 5 morals and the difference between right and wrong and to be accountable for their actions as we do teaching them how to swim.

    Our violence problem in America (regardless to the implement used) has little to do with the implement and every thing to do with the lack of morals and training. Parents today leave their children to be trained by teachers in school and don’t care who their children interact with or what they are learning from their piers, who are also left to them selves with little parental guidance, then want to blame guns for their child’s actions. We in America need to realize that the generations deterioration after us is due to our own failure to teach them morals and train them in what is right and wrong.

    It is foolish to look at the statistics above and say that pools should be done away with or guns should be outlawed. As children get older and are trained to swim, drowning becomes less of an issue. If America was to be diligent at teaching their children, in their home, by their parents how to live a moral and upright life by both instruction and example, gun violence (as well as violence in general) would become less of and issue as well.

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  276. anjin-san says:

    But your argument would be that police, soldiers, security guards, private citizens should carry firearms until they’ve had to shoot a few people to know if they will perform in the situation.

    No, my argument would be that it is a bad idea for private citizens to carry guns.

    It’s interesting that both you and Jenos are now making up positions for me. What I have said here is pretty simple. Citizen carry – unnecessary and a bad idea. Guns in home – probably create far more danger than they mitigate.

    Note that I have not called for legal restrictions of any kind. Yes Jenos, I am talking to you. I’m not sure what you get out of your endless claims to have seen through to the true purpose of people you do not agree with, but the sad truth is that you are not an insightful person – and you have compounded this problem by fooling yourself into thinking you are.

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  277. wr says:

    @Jenos Idanian #13: What a shock to discover that Jay Tea has no core beliefs — and no core, for that matter. He cares about nothing and has no opinions, until he finds out what “those people” think, and then he adopts the policy for himself.

    What a sad, pathetic little man.

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  278. matt says:

    @James W: They don’t care about statistics. They are powered by irrational fears that someone is going to gun them down somewhere. You can cite the FBI statistics all day long and point out the thousands of daily activities that are by far more likely to kill them and they don’t care.

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  279. Jenos Idanian Who Has No Pony Tail says:

    @wr: Jackhole, I don’t see how you got from what I said — I did my own research and came to the conclusion that you and your ilk were, as usual, full of shit — to what you said. Hell, given a GPS, a compass, a map, three sets of directions, and a good shove, I can’t get there from here.

    And thanks again for confirming that your goal around here is to come along after the argument’s well under way and attempt to bayonet the wounded. You might have a little more success if you weren’t armed with the intellectual equivalent of a plastic spoon.

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  280. Jenos Idanian Who Has No Pony Tail says:

    wr: They are powered by irrational fears that someone is going to gun them down somewhere.

    You got it, moron. Us gun-rights nuts are so scared of being gunned down, we want pretty much everyone to be able to have guns if they want them. And you brave gun-grabbers are so brave and so secure, you don’t want anyone else to be armed.

    Tell the truth: were you deprived of oxygen as a fetus, or are you just really that stupid?:

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  281. C. Clavin says:

    Jenos Indiana Jones copys a comment from Matt…attributes it to WR…and then calls him a moron…even though he is actually in agreement with him/her.
    Is there a bigger fool here than JenosIndiana Jones?

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  282. C. Clavin says:

    @ James W.
    Any stats on when the last time 20 children were intentionally drowned in the same pool at the same time?
    What about Movie Theaters?

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  283. matt says:

    @C. Clavin: Why does death only matter to you if it involves several at once? You’re basically arguing that it’s fine that 48 people die in 24 hours just as long as they aren’t all dying at the same time…

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  284. C. Clavin says:

    No you fool…I’m arguing that a series of unrelated accidents is a far cry from an intentional massacre. It is stunning to me that extremeists like you can’t comprehend that…which is a huge part of the problem.
    Unfortunately for rational gun enthusiasts I think we have reached a tipping point…the point where the pile of sand reaches it’s apex and then collapses on itself. I hope the result is not onerous. But if it is it’s because of irrational zealots like yourself.

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  285. James W says:

    @C. Clavin:

    What can be seen by the statistics is more children have been killed and hurt by swimming pools on accident than have been on purpose with a gun.

    My point was the problem is not the gun but is the person using the gun. You can go back and look at my references and see that the majority of deaths caused by guns where intentional not accidental. That proves that pools by them self are a higher risk than guns and that human behavior is the factor that makes guns any risk at all.

    By nine years old I could shoot a deer at 300 yards with a high powered rifle and did multiple times. There was no danger to anyone by that gun because I was taught first of all morals and the sanctity of life before I ever handled a gun. So the thought of killing a person never entered my mind because I believed, unless I was in physical danger, it would be immoral to kill some one whether it be with a gun or anything else.

    The problem is the lack of MORALS not the tool. It’s like saying American’s are fat so we need to take everyone’s fork, or limit forks to only skinny people. It’s not a fork problem it’s a behavior problem.

    You could make all the restrictions you want on guns and law breaking murderers will still be law breakers and murderers. They’ll find a gun some where if that’s what they want (The government can keep drugs off the street what makes any one think they could keep guns off the street?) and they will murder people if that’s what they have in mind to do. And if the government is able to restrict guns and provide enough red tape for the common citizen to not be able to get them, then that just makes it easier for the common criminal to kill, rob, break in with little resistance.

    As it stands now, with about 114 million households in America, a criminal has a 44% chance of meeting an armed family member. So it’s relatively dangerous to break into some one’s home.

    And a question to your question, why have most of these killings been in gun free areas? Maybe because it makes for easy targets? If you’re a cowered planning to kill people then kill your self then the logical place to go is where it is illegal for anyone to have an equal defense.

    It all boils down to the same thing as I said before. If you really want to prevent mass murder, don’t take away the peoples equal defense, every parent needs to invest in their own child’s training. You must train your child to be an upstanding citizen that believe in the sanctity of life. Society is not going to do it. It is your personal responsibility. That’s what America doesn’t like, personal responsibility, every one wants to blame it on someone or something else.

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  286. wr says:

    @Jenos Idanian Who Has No Pony Tail: “Jackhole, I don’t see how you got from what I said”

    Hmmm…. maybe here:

    “No, I’m reactive. I tend to think that whatever position you take, it’s probably the wrong one. On the issue of guns, I didn’t really care much one way or the other until I noticed that the left was positively bat-crap crazy about getting rid of them”

    You don’t give a damn about guns, or never have until people you like to annoy seem to. Now it’s become your momentary passion, with an opinion based on nothing but your discovery that “the left” is on one side, so you’ll take the other.

    And yeah, I read your BS about all your intensive “research.” Since you demonstrate total ignorance on just about every issue, I’ll assume that means, as usual, Googling the subject and then misunderstanding most of what you read.

    Look, if you want to define your life simply by taking the opposite view of “the left,” knock yourself out. But don’t get all pissy when you’re called on it. You may have actually fooled someone at some point in your life, but it sure as hell hasn’t been around here.

    Oh, and just so you have a new subject, I’ll give you a point of view from “the left” — No, I don’t think Jenos/Jay should disappear from this blog. He should post even more!

    Have fun.

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  287. wr says:

    @Jenos Idanian Who Has No Pony Tail: “wr: They are powered by irrational fears that someone is going to gun them down somewhere.

    You got it, moron. Us gun-rights nuts are so scared of being gunned down, we want pretty much everyone to be able to have guns if they want them. And you brave gun-grabbers are so brave and so secure, you don’t want anyone else to be armed.

    Tell the truth: were you deprived of oxygen as a fetus, or are you just really that stupid?:”

    Shall we take this piece by piece? Okay:

    First, I didn’t write that line about being afraid of being gunned down. That was local gun-fetishist Matt, and he was talking about those who want to regulate firearms, not those who love them. So you not only misattributed the quote, but you completely misunderstood it.

    Next, you claim you’re a “gun-nut” just after a lengthy message in which you explained how you have never cared care about the issue of guns, but that once the discussion started you learned the people you don’t like were in favor of regulation, so you jumped in on the other side. Which means you are claiming passion about an issue you’ve already said leaves you indifferent. (By the way, most people who are arguing here got involved in the discussion because 20 children were murdered. That, apparently, means substantially less to you than discovering people who despise you take one side of an issue. Sweet.)

    So since every single word in your post is either a mistake, a misunderstanding, or a lie, perhaps you should save your clever way of calling me stupid for another message. You know, one in which you actually get something right. Granted, that’s never happened before, but the century is young.

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  288. wr says:

    @matt: “Why does death only matter to you if it involves several at once? You’re basically arguing that it’s fine that 48 people die in 24 hours just as long as they aren’t all dying at the same time… ”

    Isn’t that like saying we shouldn’t care about 9/11 because far more than 3,000 people die on American highways every year?

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  289. matt says:

    @wr: I agree. We heavily over reacted to 9/11. Our over reaction has cost us untold numbers of lives and trillions in treasure. At the time I was one of the few who was against the patriot act. I was one of the few against the Iraq invasion (especially here). I will admit that I thought we could do the right thing in Afghanistan (unlike in the 80s when we cut and ran once the Soviets were done) and I still think we could of pulled that off if Bush hadn’t decided Iraq was more important.

    I of course say this as a person who lost a friend…

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  290. Jenos Idanian #13 says:

    @C. Clavin: Jenos Indiana Jones copys a comment from Matt…attributes it to WR…and then calls him a moron…even though he is actually in agreement with him/her.

    I’d like to apologize to mattb. I have no idea how the hell I misattributed his comment to wr. The fact that it was lucid and coherent should have raised huge red flags to me. Wrong, but at least coherent.

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  291. Jenos Idanian #13 says:

    @wr: Next, you claim you’re a “gun-nut” just after a lengthy message in which you explained how you have never cared care about the issue of guns, but that once the discussion started you learned the people you don’t like were in favor of regulation, so you jumped in on the other side. Which means you are claiming passion about an issue you’ve already said leaves you indifferent. (By the way, most people who are arguing here got involved in the discussion because 20 children were murdered. That, apparently, means substantially less to you than discovering people who despise you take one side of an issue. Sweet.)

    Wow, several sentences that actually form complete thoughts. WRong and stupid thoughts, but comprehensible ones. You actually show signs of progress.

    Anyway… I said HOW I got into studying up on guns and gun issues, not WHEN. It was years ago — I think close to 10. I did my homework, came to my conclusions, and then stopped thinking about it. But every time the gun issue comes up, I do a little quick refresher and see if anything has changed — and it really hasn’t.

    And “indifferent” is your word — and a very impressive one for you, to boot. But “dispassionate” would be closer — it’s something I consider important, but there’s nothing about the gun issue that really gets me thoroughly worked up, one way or another. I hear both arguments, weigh them, and then decide that the pro-gun-choice side still has the superior arguments, on several grounds. Constitutional, pragmatic, and ideological concerns all lead me to oppose the proposed gun control measures.

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  292. anjin-san says:

    @ wr

    Do you get the sense that Jenos has no clue that his contempt has all the impact of a soggy marshmallow? No doubt in his mind he is hurling thunderbolts…

    @ Jenos

    I hear both arguments, weigh them, and then decide come up with a position that sounds remarkably like what you hear on Fox News

    FTFY dude

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  293. wr says:

    @Jenos Idanian #13: “Constitutional, pragmatic, and ideological concerns all lead me to oppose the proposed gun control measures. ”

    Right. Just because this directly contradicts the previous explanation of your discovery of this compelling issue is no reason to doubt you. But I must say I prefer this pseudo-literate incarnation of Jay. It’s actually fairly convincing — you manage to make it through several paragraphs without ever once saying “Obama ate dog — hyuk hyuk hyuk.”

    Perhaps you might consider running away and returning under yet another impenetrable name — Uke-lay Arwalker-stay, perhaps? — and picking up the discourse at this level. You might find people are less hostile towards you.

    That is assuming, of course, that the hostility is not actually your sole source of pleasure in the world.

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  294. JKB says:

    @anjin-san: Citizen carry – unnecessary and a bad idea.

    Are you saying, police, soldiers, security guards, etc. are not citizens?

    Or is your position that only those in the pay of the government should be able to carry weapons for self defense.

    Security guards are a difficult problem, you wish them to carry firearms but are not government employees. I suppose your okay with government and corporate agents having firearms but not citizens that have chosen to pursue life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness using private, non-corporate means as free people ?

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  295. anjin-san says:

    Are you saying, police, soldiers, security guards, etc. are not citizens?

    If you want to be willfully dense, that is your choice. Don’t expect a response.

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  296. Dazedandconfused says:

    This is lost in the 200′s land, but I feel I have to make a comment about the case, just as a public service. It wasn’t mentioned by anybody and it sticks out like a 6-legged race horse to me. I wonder if it’s a suburban thing, something that isn’t general knowledge for those who haven’t any experience in a tough hood. It’s all very basic stuff that I’m sure most already know, so forgive me for speaking the obvious.

    She made a big mistake in not presenting the residence as occupied. Thieves frequently ring the bell and then break in after they are feeling sure no one is in. The reporter said the cops think the guy believed the house was empty. She said she saw the scruffy guy approaching and gathered up the kids and hit the closet with the gun.

    The best thing to do is always either answer the door (DON”T OPEN IT) or just turn the stereo up and/or start talking real loud. 98% of the time that is the end of it. Call 9/11 and report a guy that might be casing places.

    These guys are frequently slicker that this, they dress up as solicitors or with workmens fluorescent jackets and maybe ask a question or two as cover for having rung the bell. Eyeball the people that come to your door and question them. Trust your instincts and it never hurts to phone it in if the antenna twitches. Might save somebody else some trouble.

    I have a CCW and have had to go through recurrent training. Some of it has been run by people who really leave an impression that it’s all about figuring out when you can and can’t shoot, and expounding on all the unspeakably evil people there are ready to pounce. Her husbands comments about “proud gun owner” were pure deja vu to me. I think the NRA has a touch of the John Bircher flu happening, but that’s just my opinion. The important thing is that puts rank paranoia into some folks, and it’s counter productive to REAL security. Sometimes.

    Nobody will read this, but I feel better.

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  297. JKB says:

    @Dazedandconfused:

    Perhaps but he didn’t leave when he realized the place was occupied, he broke through two doors, entered a closet then the attic space after the family. He had visited another home and left when the woman met him outside, a habit she had due to working at home. In any case, the guy wasn’t some burglar, he was intent on doing harm to persons even if it was a crime of opportunity.

    Here is a video showing why citizens need firearms and the right to carry It’s timely, for Christmas

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  298. anjin-san says:

    @ JKB

    Do you have any video of the funerals of people who were killed in accidental shootings?

    NORTH MEMPHIS, Tenn. (FOX13) -
    Christmas is supposed to be about joy, but for one North Memphis family it’s anything but.

    Their 10-year-old son died Tuesday afternoon in what police are describing as an accidental fatal gunshot wound to the abdomen.

    SPRINGVILLE — The young child who died Tuesday night in Springville after accidentally shooting himself was the son of a police officer, and the Utah County Attorney’s Office is now investigating the incident to avoid any potential conflicts.

    INDIANAPOLIS -
    Two teenage boys face charges after a 14-year-old Franklin Township Middle School West student died in an accidental shooting Tuesday night.

    HOUSTON – Felton Richardson expected his two friends to be waiting for him on the front porch of his southeast Houston house. He was shocked to see yellow crime tape when he pulled up in his car Sunday afternoon.

    Jaque Fields, 18, was slumped in a chair, dead from an apparent accidental gun shot to the head.

    PRAIRIEVILLE, LA (FOX44) — One teenager is dead another behind bars after Ascension Parish Sheriff’s deputies say one teen accidentally shot the other.

    Investigators say 13-year-old Christian Crain died from a gunshot to the head.

    Do they cover any of this on the NRA’s website?

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  299. anjin-san says:

    Goldilocks?

    “Silver fox” would be a more accurate description. At any rate, that is what my wife is calling me these days.

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  300. matt says:

    @anjin-san: What’s your point? Is someone pretending that accidents don’t happen? I could link hundreds of news articles from the same time period of people being killed by everything from cars to wild animals. What’s the point?

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  301. anjin-san says:

    @ matt

    And an asteroid could hit the earth and wipe us all out – so why worry about some kids being killed by guns?

    I knew more than a few people that were killed in auto/motorcycle accidents, so why have regulations to make sure food is safe?

    No matter how many times you repeat a lame argument, it is still a lame argument.

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  302. JKB says:

    @anjin-san:

    So you agree, we should introduce a gun-proofing course into all schools so that kids are aware of the nature and how to handle real firearms. Such a program should also be geared toward dispelling the misconceptions about firearms that is spread through video games, television and moves to dampen the allure of guns created by seeking to profit from selling glorified violence to children.

    Perhaps also a tax upon movies, videos, television, and games rated PG-13 and above for violence. Say 25% of gross receipts?

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  303. JKB says:

    They’ve released the 911 tape.

    Now this woman did everything the Progressives claim will save you. She took her children upstairs, locked the bedroom door, then into the bathroom and locked that door, then into a closet, then into a crawl space and shut those doors. She called her husband who immediately called 911 on another phone.

    And yet, the hiding didn’t stop this guy, the locked doors didn’t stop this guy, the police didn’t arrive in time to stop this guy. Only, a .38 revolver stopped this guy.

    What would those who hope to disarm this lady suggest she do when she’s denied the capability to defend herself and her kids? Perhaps offer herself to be raped and murdered in front of her kids? Or, she did have two kids, twins, she could have offered up on of them to be raped and murdered so she and the chosen one could escape?

    Oh and we should keep in mind, that in Chicago, DC, NYC, etc. this would be a mom and two kids raped, murdered and/or terrorized with no way to defend themselves. Her kids should thank God their parents chose to live in Georgia.

    BTW, the firearm had been stored in a safe, probably in deference to the children in the home. I don’t oppose recommending locking up firearms in homes with children but it shouldn’t be required by law as everyone’s threat situation is different and sometimes the firearm needs to be more readily available.

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  304. mantis says:

    @JKB:

    What would those who hope to disarm this lady…

    Name one such person.

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  305. anjin-san says:

    @JKB

    So you agree, we should introduce a gun-proofing course into all schools so that kids are aware of the nature and how to handle real firearms.

    Still making up positions for me, eh?

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  306. JKB says:

    @mantis: Name one such person.

    Mayor of New York and NYPD, who already disarms those in his jurisdiction, provided they don’t have juice with city hall

    Mayor of Chicago and CPD – same as NYC

    Governor of New York, who has intimated confiscation might be an option

    Mayor of DC and Metropolitan Police, same as NYC, although received a setback in Heller

    And let’s not forget all those here and elsewhere who’ve advocated to use an “insurance requirement” to make guns to costly to own, except for the wealthy and connected.

    Those who want to impose a punitive tax on ammunition to make it too expensive to use a firearm.

    Sure they won’t say it to her or anyone else’s face but that is the consequences of their positions, i.e., disarming lawful gun owners who are not wealthy and/or politically connected.

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  307. JKB says:

    @anjin-san:

    Sure, I didn’t use a question mark but anyone with basic reading skills would read that as a question and not a statement. Perhaps you should review your high school English classes?

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  308. mantis says:

    @JKB:

    Mayor of New York and NYPD, who already disarms those in his jurisdiction, provided they don’t have juice with city hall

    The New York City authorities couldn’t disarm a woman in Georgia if they wanted. They wouldn’t even disarm her if she lived in New York City. You don’t need “juice with city hall.” You need a permit. You are full of shit.

    Mayor of Chicago and CPD – same as NYC

    I live in Chicago and know first hand that you are full of shit. Handguns are legal here after McDonald. Again, no one here would disarm this woman. You are full of shit.

    Governor of New York, who has intimated confiscation might be an option

    Your paranoid fantasies do not equal reality. The governor of New York has no such authority. You are full of shit.

    Mayor of DC and Metropolitan Police, same as NYC, although received a setback in Heller

    Yes, same as NYC, in that it is legal to own handguns for self defense, and they will not disarm legal gun owners. You are full of shit.

    And let’s not forget all those here and elsewhere who’ve advocated to use an “insurance requirement” to make guns to costly to own, except for the wealthy and connected.

    Does that fact that I need insurance to drive mean the state is taking away my car? It does not. You are full of shit.

    Those who want to impose a punitive tax on ammunition to make it too expensive to use a firearm.

    Again, not disarming anyone. You are full of shit.

    Sure they won’t say it to her or anyone else’s face

    Oh, I see, you know that they all secretly want to disarm this woman in Georgia, but won’t admit it (why not?). You are full of shit.

    Anyway, all that bullshit and you failed to name anyone proposing we disarm this woman in Georgia. You are full off…well, you know.

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  309. mantis says:

    @JKB:

    Sure, I didn’t use a question mark but anyone with basic reading skills would read that as a question and not a statement. Perhaps you should review your high school English classes?

    Looked like a statement to me, largely because of the period and the absence of a question mark. Perhaps you should review your grammar school English classes.

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  310. Blue Galangal says:

    @JKB: Or a kid listening to music in his truck outside a store.

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  311. al-Ameda says:

    This article and this thread remind me that the basic conservative assertion when it comes to guns, gun ownership, and gun violence in this country is this:

    (1) there are never enough guns, and
    the solution is always (2) ‘more guns.’

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  312. anjin-san says:

    @ JKB

    Let’s both play your little game -

    So what you are saying is that the government should force children to take gun classes in government schools regardless of the wishes of the parents?

    If you want to jerk off, go for it. I have better things to do.

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  313. anjin-san says:

    “gun proofed kids” – interesting wording – sounds a bit like “bullet proof”

    It’s got to be a coincidence – right?

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  314. JKB says:

    @anjin-san:

    But it’s for the children! Aren’t you willing to do whatever is necessary to save the children?

    @anjin-san: interesting wording

    Because it is not at all like DrownProofing.

    But you are correct, such training about guns or about water won’t “proof” someone from harm. Just as there is no such thing as an actual bullet proof vest. Such training and items only improve a person’s chances of survival. But since it isn’t perfect, no child or police officer should have one, otherwise it would be discriminatory against those for whom such training and equipment fails.

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  315. Dazedandconfused says:

    JKB, that tape is in direct conflict with all the other accounts, and even in direct conflict with itself by including the comment about police believing the man didn’t know the house was occupied.

    From “rummaging around” to “chasing a 9 year old up the stairs” (according to the narration) is too far a leap. There has been no mention of busting down multiple locked doors to get to that closet, and the tape provides no indication that ever occurred. I think it would have been included in the initial reports, and I doubt they would still be saying the guy thought the house was unoccupied.

    I wouldn’t hang your hat on this just yet. Looks like a media outfit trying to go viral in the RW blogosphere, right now.

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  316. anjin-san says:

    This just in:

    TAFT, Calif. (AP) — A 16-year-old student armed with a shotgun walked into class in a rural California high school on Thursday and shot one student, fired at another but missed, and then was talked into surrendering by a teacher and another staff member, officials said.

    The teen victim was in critical but stable condition, Kern County Sheriff Donny Youngblood told a press conference. The sheriff said the teacher suffered a minor pellet wound to the head but declined treatment.

    When the shots were fired, the teacher began trying to get the more than two dozen students out a back door and also engaged the shooter in conversation to distract him, Youngblood said. A campus supervisor responding to a call of shots fired also began talking to him.

    “They talked him into putting the shotgun down,” Youngblood said.

    Sounds like a hell of a teacher…

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  317. al-Ameda says:

    @anjin-san:

    TAFT, Calif. (AP) — A 16-year-old student armed with a shotgun walked into class in a rural California high school on Thursday and shot one student, fired at another but missed, and then was talked into surrendering by a teacher and another staff member, officials said.

    I think we can thank god that that student didn’t walk into that classroom armed with a set of high-end Steak Knives – who knows how many would have been injured or killed?

    That teacher and that staff member were unbelievably courageous – most of us have no idea how we’d react in such a situation.

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  318. anjin-san says:

    @ al-Ameda

    A profile in courage for sure…

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  319. wr says:

    @al-Ameda: I think we can thank god that that student didn’t walk into that classroom armed with a set of high-end Steak Knives – who knows how many would have been injured or killed?

    Or a swimming pool. Those things are deadly.

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  320. anjin-san says:

    In other news:

    Police say two men openly carried assault rifles in the Portland’s Sellwood area to demonstrate their 2nd amendment rights and “educate the public”. Steven M. Boyce, of Gresham, and Warren R. Drouin, of Medford, both 22, were spotted by officers about 1:50 p.m. Wednesday near Southeast 7th Avenue and Spokane Street and have concealed handgun licenses, said Sgt. Pete Simpson, a Portland Police Bureau spokesman. They were not arrested because the rifles remained on their backs, he added.
    Officers warned the duo that the sight of their rifles would generate 911 calls, but neither man seemed concerned, Simpson said. No shots were fired.

    In addition to numerous 911 calls, the two sent at least one school into lockdown.

    http://talkingpointsmemo.com/archives/2013/01/good_times_5.php

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  321. JKB says:

    @al-Ameda: walk into that classroom armed with a set of high-end Steak Knives

    You do realize that if using an edged weapon your tactics would be different. Or are you assuming the assailant wouldn’t have been able to get within arms length of the student he wanted to kill?

    By the way, under 18 possession of a shotgun without adult supervision – crime
    carrying a firearm within 1000 feet of a school – crime
    discharging a firearm within a federally designated “gun-free” school zone – felony
    murder – Class A felony
    attempted murder – Class A felony
    assault with a deadly weapon – Class A felony

    So what we need is one or two more laws?

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  322. JKB says:

    @anjin-san: In addition to numerous 911 calls, the two sent at least one school into lockdown.

    The inability of biased individuals or school officials to comprehend lawful behavior does not a crime make. If perhaps people didn’t listen to the hysteria about firearms from the Progressives, they’d be able to discern lawful behavior such open carry where it is legal and say David Gregory’s willful violation of DC gun laws by possession of a high-capacity magazine.

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  323. JKB says:

    The mother grabbed her children, her gun and hid in a crawlspace.

    “Inside of the house he pried open the bedroom door, the bathroom door and the bathroom leading to a closet to get to these people,” said Cpt. Greg Hall with the Walton County Sheriff’s Department.

    But investigators do believe he sought out the family once inside.

    “This is not just your average burglar. There was a reason that he was trying to search out who was inside of the house,” Hall said.

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  324. mantis says:

    @JKB:

    If perhaps people didn’t listen to the hysteria about firearms from the Progressives

    So all those dead kids in pools of blood in Connecticut were just hysteria invented by progressives?

    In reality, if these two assholes cared at all about public safety they would have recognized that wandering around outside schools with rifles exposed will cause a panic. Maybe if they had any concern for others, or brains capable of functioning above say, your level, they wouldn’t have done something so incredibly stupid. It’s just too bad they weren’t spotted by another crazed gun owner and they all killed each other. Now that would make the rest of us safer, if only a little bit.

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  325. Nikki says:

    @JKB: Woman successfully defends against an intruder with a gun. Taft High School – teacher successfully defends against an armed intruder without a gun.

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  326. matt says:

    @anjin-san: They weren’t carrying assault rifles. I know you love your fear mongering but could you at least use the proper terms…

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  327. JKB says:

    @Nikki: Taft High School – teacher successfully defends against an armed intruder without a gun.

    And had the kid chose not talk to the teachers, what would they have done then?

    One should always seek ways to end a threat without discharging a firearm but sometimes, the only way to stop a person is to inflict damage to them so that they either flee or are incapacitated.

    Perhaps you’ll remember that the principal and several teachers at Sandy Hook tried to engage the killer, but he wasn’t interested in talking. As they were unarmed, they could do nothing unilaterally but force him to expend a few rounds of ammunition.

    So please, what is your point?

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  328. JKB says:

    @mantis:

    No, the hysteria is going to lockdown just because they spied a couple guys with rifles slung on their shoulders at a distance from the school. There was not report that they approach the school or otherwise engaged in threatening behavior.

    When I was in high school, those rifles would have been in the back of the student, and teacher, cars in the parking lot for some hunting after classes. In fact, I think there was some hunting in the woods behind the school. There were rifles, including machine guns (on occasion) in the ROTC spaced below the gym. There were simulated rifles used during ROTC drill and by the drill team as well as band members.

    No one freaked out, no one got shot, no one locked down when we marched round and round the perimeter road in formation. No one panicked when we fired small caliber pistols and rifles on the range under the gym or the members of the rifle team carried their rifles to and from their cars.

    Now , pray tell, what has changed since the late 1970s other than Progressive hysteria?

    By the way, there were no school shootings because even students had access to firearms that would put an end to such an event.

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  329. mantis says:

    @JKB:

    Now , pray tell, what has changed since the late 1970s

    You are quite possibly the dumbest person to ever live.

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  330. Augy says:

    @michael reynolds: Sorry, but you are only telling half the truth. The real power of the gun is in having it and not having to even fire it. As a retired police officer I know from first-hand experience and not just “studies” and “statistics” which are often misleading. I openly carried a gun for 30 years and was never shot, nor even shot at – BECAUSE I carried a gun. However many times in my career I confronted bad guys doing some bad things, who immediately stopped doing those bad things when I drew my .357 magnum revolver and pointed it at them. Along with my fellow officers, I witnessed this “stop now” effect of the gun hundreds of times. Not one time did I ever have to fire my weapon outside of the practice range – and this proves beyond any doubt the effectiveness of the firearm as a crime deterrent. There have also been studies which estimate that average citizens in the United States use firearms to defend themselves anywhere from 200,000 to 1,000,000 times per year to stop the actions of criminals without ever having to fire a shot, just as I did throughout my career. Many potential victims have avoided being savagely beaten or killed because they were able to grab a gun and chase their attacker away when nothing else would have saved them. More often than not, we police were not able to arrive on the scene until AFTER a person had already been victimized by a criminal. Self defense is a personal responsibility and the gun is the only reliable tool that allows the weak, the elderly, even the untrained, and the meek to defend themselves against a young, strong, and savage attacker who is intent on hurting them.

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