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Do you think guns should be completely outlawed?


A Tripolation

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These gun threads can get rather lengthy rather quickly. Let's stay focused and on-topic. And remember, the OP asked if guns should be *completely* outlawed, so your general stances on control have not been requested.

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You are talking worst case scenerio with drugs and best case scenerio with guns.

 

Do you know how many people I can kill with an assault rifle and a crowded area?

 

Drugs just don't compare, yes they can be abused and they can kill.

 

but they are not designed to kill. The kicker is you at least need a prescription to buy certain drugs.

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These gun threads can get rather lengthy rather quickly. Let's stay focused and on-topic. And remember, the OP asked if guns should be *completely* outlawed, so your general stances on control have not been requested.

 

Very good point.

 

In the United States, at least, firearms should absolutely not be completely outlawed until there is a constitutional amendment revoking the second amendment to the consitution. Until this happens, there is a constitutional right to bear arms. Whatever your opinion of guns, the constitution shouldn't be disregarded.

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Now, that's not to say I agree with the saying about "only outlaws" having guns. Who are these "outlaws," anyway? Guys in black hats riding through town, robbing banks and abducting farmer's daughters? "Terrorists," maybe? Sorry, guys. That's just not how it works. Sure, you'll have lots of people with illegal weapons. Are they going to go around terrorizing the poor defenseless townsfolk? No.

 

No, I wasn't implying such a literal interpretation of outlaws. I meant simply that criminals wouldn't abide by laws, as they are criminals.

 

If you'll permit a personal example, I was terrorized as a kid. Around when I was 15, someone broke into our house. They were not there to kill, but to steal. I woke up, saw him, and screamed. My father keeps a shotgun in his room, and he came into my room with the shotgun (seeing as how I just screamed bloody murder). The thief had a hunting knife, but saw the shotgun and gave up. My dad forced him to his knees and held him until the cops came. With restristive ownership, how should my dad have confronted this guy? We live in the country, police response would have taken a good 10 minutes, and that's if a state trooper was nearby on the back roads. So yes, I do believe that if guns were banned completely, criminals would become much more brazen knowing that they don't face a sawed-off, double-barrel 12-gauge.


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The talk about Iranians with guns is stupid. It would be just like those talk radio guys to think that the only reason to have a peaceful protest is if you're not sufficiently well armed. What a depressing way to miss the point.

 

Hmm, Sisyphus, I don't listen to talk radio. I simply thought that were the US government to ever deny peaceful protest and threaten bloodshed in case of demonstration, it would anger quite a few people and these people would have guns. Now, the National Guard could quicky put down a rebellion with their superior weaponry and training, but the backlash of the murdering of American civilians would be so nasty, it could potentially cause a civil war. The threat of this alone would keep the government in line were things to ever get that bad, I think. I tend to think along the lines of Alan Moore's V and his "The people should not be afraid of their government, the government should be afraid of their people". While this is a potential happening in the US, it clearly isn't in Iran, and we see what is happening there.

 

And Sisyphus, if you would refrain from implying that I'm too stupid to think on my own, and gather my ideas from talk show hosts (idiots at that), I would appreciate it. Thanks.

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Talk to me after you have been mugged because some drug addict needed $50 to go buy his drugs and get his fix.

 

Or better still, go talk to a close family member of a drug addict. Ask them how torn up they are inside because their loved one died from an overdose. Or how they felt when said family member stole from them to get their drug money. Or ask a father how he feels about his daughter pimping herself out because she needs the money for her drug habit. There are lots of other victims...

 

The problems you speak of are down to the illegality of drugs rather than drugs per se but anyway, can I remind you that I did say the whole "durgs: right or wrong" discusion belongs in another thread).

 

Meanwhile, back at the topic.

 

Re "Talk to me after you have been mugged because some drug addict needed $50 to go buy his drugs and get his fix."

I am doing. Thankfully, because I live in the UK where guns are banned I was as well armed as he was. I won the fist fight because he was stoned. Neither of us was seriously injured.

 

Explain to me again please, how it would have been better if we had both had guns.

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Then we can't ban explosives, otherwise just criminals will have them :D

 

I think Bascule's point was that if someone wants to kill someone else, then they will find a way, and complete banning of guns will not stop them. Thus, it is illogical to take guns away from people who would only use them in self-defense against others with guns. Apologies to Bascule if this isn't what he meant.


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Explain to me again please, how it would have been better if we had both had guns.

 

He's a criminal right? If he had wanted a gun, are you saying he couldn't have gotten one due to the UK's omnipotent ban on guns? In that situation(one where the criminal buys a gun), it would have been favorable to you to have a gun as well, yes.

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He's a criminal right? If he had wanted a gun, are you saying he couldn't have gotten one due to the UK's omnipotent ban on guns? In that situation(one where the criminal buys a gun), it would have been favorable to you to have a gun as well, yes.

 

And yet that mugger didn't have a gun, despite being of that exotic species reputed to possess mystical gun-acquiring powers (as well as a penchant for public use of them once acquired), "the criminals." But if he did have a gun, I'm disinclined to believe it would have ended better had John also had one. But I guess that's just my personal preference - I'd rather lose $50 than kill somebody. And I'd definitely rather lose $50 than lose a shootout. So unless you think it's common practice for some class of people to walk up to and shoot unarmed strangers (but with enough warning for said strangers to kickdraw!) just to get their wallets, no, I don't think it would have ended better.

 

(And yet I'm not for banning guns! Is it really so hard to accept that different laws might be better for different places?)

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I think Bascule's point was that if someone wants to kill someone else, then they will find a way, and complete banning of guns will not stop them. Thus, it is illogical to take guns away from people who would only use them in self-defense against others with guns.
Yes, that is a point, but rather irrelevant as if you have a gun you can go about killing some far quicker easier and more accidentally than if you didn't.

 

He's a criminal right? If he had wanted a gun, are you saying he couldn't have gotten one due to the UK's omnipotent ban on guns?

Yes, I have no idea where I would get a gun from, might be able to find a deactivated one at a car boot sale or something, but that is hardly illicit gang activity, then you have to get the ammo. I mean yes hardcore criminals can get there hands on them in organised crime circles, the average criminal who is trying to sell your phone and the £20 in your wallet can't and wouldn't even bother trying.

 

Did anyone inform you that cars have a second purpose, namely transport of people and other goods?

I think you actually mean cars have a primary purpose, the whole argument was ridiculous in the first place, you can quite happily kill anyone with anything, including parts of your own body so under his fallacy everything would be banned and we would all be wrapped in breathable bubble wrap and cotton wool.

 

I can't really see the disadvantage of reducing the number of guns over a period of time, yes an straight out ban is never going to work in the US but if you banned certain calibres then over say 15 years whittled away at the various types till you are left with people with legitimate reasons such as farmers, people interested in hunting and security forces, then inevitable the number of guns in the criminal population will be reduced as well.

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(And yet I'm not for banning guns! Is it really so hard to accept that different laws might be better for different places?)

 

No, not at all. I agree with those terms. I think some areas should more heavily regulate guns, but not completely rid them. NYC has a complete ban on guns IIRC, and yet ALOT of crime is committed with a gun.

And yes, I would much rather be mugged than have to shoot someone, but if they were trying to kill me or just beat me for fun, then yes, I would prefer to shoot them with the .22 I almost always carry in unfamiliar places.

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No, not at all. I agree with those terms. I think some areas should more heavily regulate guns, but not completely rid them. NYC has a complete ban on guns IIRC, and yet ALOT of crime is committed with a gun.

 

At least with regards to NYC, that's incorrect on both counts. We do have some of the strictest gun control laws in the country, but there is not a complete ban. And there is very, very little gun crime.

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bascule do you support strict licensing of guns or do you feel more that guns should be bought by anyone with an ID and money or somewhere in between?

 

I certainly don't mind licensing/background checks, however I do think there needs to be a way to expedite the process for the purposes of things like gun shows.

 

but a gun not a toothbrush....

 

It's designed to kill.

 

There are many things that are designed to kill which are still fun to own. This knife was designed to inflict maximum damage on internal organs:

 

http://www.spyderco.com/catalog/details.php?product=60

 

Should we therefore ban it? I'd kind of like to have one actually.

 

I think a decorative mace (like the spiky ball kind) would be pretty cool as well

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I don't think guns should be banned, but with great power comes great responsibility. If a gun is used in a crime, then the sentencing should be greater. If you own a gun that is used in a crime and it can be shown that you did not reasonably keep it safe, then you should be held partially to blame.

 

Its just a slope from fists to bombs - as you increase that slope of death potential, more control is needed, either in outright bans(bombs, anti-aircraft guns) to registration and punishment.

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I don't think guns should be banned, but with great power comes great responsibility. If a gun is used in a crime, then the sentencing should be greater. If you own a gun that is used in a crime and it can be shown that you did not reasonably keep it safe, then you should be held partially to blame.

 

I don't completely agree or disagree. If you are robbed at gunpoint, but the robber leaves only taking your cash I think you are better off than if you are robbed at knifepoint, but having been brutally slashed in the process. But then I suppose assualt charges can be added.

 

Also, we get back to a loose legal term. What exactly is responsible storage? Who has the burden of proof, the prosecutor or the former gun owner? How much is the gun owner going to have to pay a lawyer to defend himself (after having suffered the financial loss of the gun)? How much are the taxpayers going to pay so that the prosecutor can go after the former gun owner, who is guilty of no crime except perhaps carelessness?

 

Its just a slope from fists to bombs - as you increase that slope of death potential, more control is needed, either in outright bans(bombs, anti-aircraft guns) to registration and punishment.

 

 

I tend to look at this issue in terms of personal responsibility. People should responsible for their actions. It should not be the governments (big "mother") job to "teach" people to be responsible via specific legislation and regulation which is always imperfect and inadequate to address what responsible people would do of their own accord. To me, doing this necessitates a loss of freedom (such as what is called out in the second amendment of the US constitution).

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People should responsible for their actions. It should not be the governments (big "mother") job to "teach" people to be responsible via specific legislation and regulation which is always imperfect and inadequate to address what responsible people would do of their own accord. To me, doing this necessitates a loss of freedom.

 

But, can't we all agree that part of the governments responsibility is the protection of its citizens (I'm not interested in debating "how much" or where to draw the lines with that, just that it's part of their charter)?

 

For example, you don't have the "freedom" to harm my family, or to harm my property, or to dump toxic chemicals into the local stream, or to deposit the carcasses of decaying diseased animals in the roadway, or ad infinitum... but you're not arguing that government is being "big mother" as pertains to those issues when they act to prevent you from doing it.

 

Why the double standard?

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There are many things that are designed to kill which are still fun to own. This knife was designed to inflict maximum damage on internal organs:

 

http://www.spyderco.com/catalog/details.php?product=60

 

That's nasty...geeesh we are twisted.

 

Should we therefore ban it? I'd kind of like to have one actually.

 

I think a decorative mace (like the spiky ball kind) would be pretty cool as well

 

I still stick with no ban. I really don't know.

 

I've been thinking about this for the past two days.

 

It's just hard for me to get around the efficiency of the gun. I am sure explosives are efficient as well; and all you need is the internet and some chemistry knowledge.

 

I plan to make some medieval weaponry once I get a place I can put a furnace in and take a few blacksmith courses. Work on casting and forging.

 

If you are lucky I may make you something. It wont be for a while though.

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Why the double standard?

 

No double standard at all. Responsible citizens would do none of the examples you provided. But since not everyone is responsible, the government must intervene to protect everyone else.

 

Since in the real world, there will always be irresponsible people, some restrictions are necessary. The question, as I see it, is given the current (and unmeasurable) responsibility level of the people, what restrictions (laws and regulations) are reasonable?

 

In the case of gun ownership, I think the current laws are really overly restrictive based upon my personal experiences. I've had things stolen from me many times (my airconditioner last week :mad: ) but never at gunpoint. I've not known anyone robbed at gunpoint; but I have known someone who intentionally shot himself to commit suidice. The current laws, and even all the proposed gun control laws I've heard about would have done nothing to prevent this. Guns, however, are necessary in the rural locations I have lived at as there are animals which seek to eat the farmers livestock. There are also mountain lions and my father no longer goes out without a gun for self-defense (he used to before they moved back into the area he lives).

 

Now, were I to live in an inner city slum, the circumstances might be different with more irresponsible gang members around (although we already have plenty), so we are getting back to a more local determination of what is appropriate.

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I'm thinking more and more that car ownership might be a pretty good model. You're free to own and use a wide variety of vehicles, though not without restrictions. To use them, you need to prove to the state that you can do so safely and be issued a license. All individual vehicles are also all individually registered and licensed. And if you use them in a reckless manner, even if there's no harm done, there are penalties, sometimes as severe as confiscation, loss of license, or jail time.

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I think you do have a few misconceptions that play into significant differences...

You're free to own and use a wide variety of vehicles, though not without restrictions.
what legal restrictions are there on ownership? I don't think there are any at all. Some very rich people have dozens of cars. Some of which they might never drive.
To use them, you need to prove to the state that you can do so safely and be issued a license.
No. That is to use them on public roads. You can use them on private land all you want without a license.
All individual vehicles are also all individually registered and licensed.
Do they have to be registered and licensed if they are never, ever driven on public roads (IIRC, registration but not licensing is required because the law allows no exceptions to registration, but again should it be in these cases)? What about cars in musuems?
And if you use them in a reckless manner, even if there's no harm done, there are penalties, sometimes as severe as confiscation, loss of license, or jail time.
Again, on public roads. On private property, none of this applies as you can plainly tell by NASCAR and Monster trucks.

 

Still, the legal restrictions on cars is a good starting point for further discussions. For start, considering the distances some bullets can fly, how far does the "private" property apply? Should this be different for different types of guns (shotgun pellets do not travel nearly as far as rifle bullets). And should it apply at all to guns that are for display only and will never be shot?

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No double standard at all.

I think you may have missed my point. I was suggesting that you are okay with various regulations on other things, as you yourself conceded and readily admit, yet you're not crying out about the removals of your freedoms about that stuff. So, what makes guns any different?

 

My question is, why is it that you are okay with government "big mother" in some areas, but when it comes to guns you take a much more ideological/extreme stance? Would not regulations and "big mother" government also serve the populace positively on the subject of guns? After all, you don't seem to mind their intervention and regulation with lots of other things.

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I think you may have missed my point. I was suggesting that you are okay with various regulations on other things, as you yourself conceded and readily admit, yet you're not crying out about the removals of your freedoms about that stuff. So, what makes guns any different?

 

My question is, why is it that you are okay with government "big mother" in some areas, but when it comes to guns you take a much more ideological/extreme stance? Would not regulations and "big mother" government also serve the populace positively on the subject of guns? After all, you don't seem to mind their intervention and regulation with lots of other things.

 

I'm not ok with "big mother" government, where did I say I was? I want as few rules and regulations as is possible, in all areas including gun control. However, it is not possible to do without some rules and regulations. Therefore some (even with regards to guns) are necessary - a necessary evil if you will.

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Sherlock, what did I say to give you the impression I wasn't talking about public roads? That's what I'm talking about with "restrictions." You can't get a road-legal M1 Abrams, you need special licenses for motorcycles or heavy trucks, and while it isn't illegal to have an unregistered car as long as it never leaves private property, AFAIK it is illegal to sell it. That kind of thing.

 

It's not a direct analogy nor was it intended to be, but just a reference point. Cars are well-regulated, potentially dangerous tools that have many laws designed to prevent us from killing each other, yet they are ubiquituous, and few people find the rules pointless or excessively repressive. If there was a constitutional amendment guaranteeing our right to use vehicles, would there be court cases challenging, say, DUI laws on that grounds? Well, probably. But would they win?

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NIf you'll permit a personal example, I was terrorized as a kid. Around when I was 15, someone broke into our house. They were not there to kill, but to steal. I woke up, saw him, and screamed. My father keeps a shotgun in his room, and he came into my room with the shotgun (seeing as how I just screamed bloody murder). The thief had a hunting knife, but saw the shotgun and gave up. My dad forced him to his knees and held him until the cops came. With restristive ownership, how should my dad have confronted this guy?

Or perhaps because of restrictive ownership, that guy didn't have a gun as well. An overly restrictive law is what you're talking about, as it would've kept your household from possessing a gun.

 

So yes, I do believe that if guns were banned completely, criminals would become much more brazen knowing that they don't face a sawed-off, double-barrel 12-gauge.

I don't see why you can't stop a person with a taser gun or modern/advanced forms of subdual.

 

220px-Police_issue_X26_TASER.jpg

 

Plus there's also rubber bullets (or plastic ones), eventually they could design meaner versions of wax bullets. There are flexible baton rounds (see pics), they can make super soaker versions for adults heavily laced with Dave's Insanity Sauce or an equally good (pun) alternative.

 

However, often the best weapon is defensive in nature, such as a quality -- and piercingly loud -- alarm system. You hardly need a gun if the would-be intruder flees with the cops automatically on the way.

 

At least with regards to NYC, that's incorrect on both counts. We do have some of the strictest gun control laws in the country, but there is not a complete ban. And there is very, very little gun crime.

Except in Hollywood's NYC ;)

 

There are many things that are designed to kill which are still fun to own. This knife was designed to inflict maximum damage on internal organs

You can't wield it at a safe distance as you can a gun, and throwing disarms you as a result.

 

And in order to use on a crowd, you'd have to run to each person, where a gun a far more efficient.

 

Going back to cars, you'd risk damaging it (where a gun's use as a weapon isn't likely to damage it permanently). And since you're unable to leave with a damaged car, thus leaving all manner of evidence behind, few people would ever use it as a weapon.

 

But also, cars directly benefit society (in transportation). Only hunting guns can boast that (for limiting over-population of wild critters that lack natural predators).

 

That is to use them on public roads. You can use them on private land all you want without a license.

That's a very good point.

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I think the car model works as well, with one exception. The primary use of cars is for transportation. If someone steals your car and kills someone with it, then that driver bears complete responsibility. If you own an armory of weapons just laying about and someone used them to take out half a school, then you should be shot with each of them, starting at the toes, IMO. That's some personal responsibility there.

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Talk to me after you have been mugged because some drug addict needed $50 to go buy his drugs and get his fix.

 

Or better still, go talk to a close family member of a drug addict. Ask them how torn up they are inside because their loved one died from an overdose. Or how they felt when said family member stole from them to get their drug money. Or ask a father how he feels about his daughter pimping herself out because she needs the money for her drug habit. There are lots of other victims...

 

Yes, but that is due to drugs being illegal and expensive. Our local police chief wants to legalize heroin and give it to drug addicts for free on the NHS. Apparently the crime that accompanies a single heroin hit costs society around £500 a time on average, but a dose of heroin on the NHS would cost only 50p! Plus it negates the need for addicts to mug people and spread misery, or become prostitutes etc.

 

Anyway, a bit off topic there...

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