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Aventurier Donating Member (43 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Nov-01-07 12:23 AM
Original message
Why guns are important (and why they are not)
I'd like to make an appeal to both sides of the gun issue to find some common ground.

First of all, for the sake of disclosure, I am a gun owner. I am, however, not blindly opposed to all gun control provisions as a matter of principle. In presidential elections, I voted for Ross Perot in '92, Clinton in '96, Gore in '00, and Kerry in '04. I am very anti-neocon and anti-PNAC.

I use my guns for hunting, trapping, and recreational target shooting. I am not opposed to the defensive use of firearms and concealed carry is fine by me, but I do not carry. If I lived or worked in dangerous areas, I would do so - and in Alaska this summer, I did carry a weapon for my own defense. I don't consider my living and working environment dangerous enough to justify the bother of carrying a concealed firearm, but I certainly would never judge another person's life situation and the choices they make, unless I were to walk a mile in their shoes.

I'm a national merit scholar and rather well-read. I weigh the gun issue as a single issue among many; although it is a very important issue, others may easily trump it - and judging from my voting record, they have. My circle of friends include people who would never think of owning a gun, and people whose sole purpose in life is to acquire and shoot firearms of every make and model.

Pro-gun people sometimes fail to understand the deep-seated, emotional feeling that firearms evoke in those unfamiliar with them as objects handled and dealt with on a day-to-day basis. There are two main causes of this: first, the media (movies, television, and news), which portrays firearms in such a way as to equate them with death and fear. This association is often established very early in life, and, like religious indoctrination, colors all aspects of personality through adulthood. This is why the gun control lobby is effective; the idea that guns are bad/evil/malicious is deeply rooted in the subconscious. It is not something that rational argument will prevail against. Thus, it is an excellent motivating tool for urbanized populations, intellectuals/academics, and very laudable idealists. The second factor is, of course, the decline in gun exposure. I once was giving a tour of my new house to some friends, and a good friend of mine accidentally popped into a room where a gun was laying in plain view. He screamed and actually urinated involuntarily. This person had never seen a gun in his life, and immediately assumed that he was in danger. Having no exposure to firearms except the dark and deadly ideas buried in his subconscious, he had an immediate visceral reaction to the sight of a gun laying on a desk. I would love to say that after explanation and debate, he's now cured himself of his fear, but unfortunately that is not the case at all, he still wishes all gun ownership to be banned and thinks of me as a dangerous lunatic because I own a gun, despite our long-standing friendship and despite my most eloquent efforts to the contrary. In almost every instance, the people opposed to private gun ownership are well-armed with evidence for the evil nature of firearms, for of all the great evils that have been committed on earth, the number is few where no gun is wielded. This is a powerful and very sensible argument that cannot be lightly brushed aside and should not be denigrated. The only counterweight is to articulate a _positive_ effect of private gun ownership, something which is not only elusive, but difficult to articulate to people whose reality is framed in gun-free terms.

Anti-gun people, on the other hand, fail to understand the deep-seated, emotional feelings that gun owners feel toward these inanimate objects they treasure. The fact that many gun owners elevate their ownership of firearms above all their other intrinsic rights seems, at first blush, not only illogical but downright dangerous. After all, guns are not human beings, they are objects, so why should the ownership of a material good be as important as societal progress, equality, human rights, or any number of other issues which _should_ be more important? Gun owners often fail to examine their own reasons for owning guns, and instead rely on constitutional arguments to the exclusion of all others. This is a poor excuse for debate. To argue for the right to own firearms, solely on the basis of the constitution, is to give up all semblance of reason, because the constitution is by necessity a living document, completely malleable. To many gun owners, guns are a birthright. In many rural areas, the transfer of ownership of family firearms is the most important component in the last will and testament of the deceased. Let me emphasize that further - to many people, the family's weapons are more important than the family's money, land, or valuables. In some cases, the wills of rural people will contain no provision for the distribution of anything EXCEPT for the firearms that the deceased owned at the point of their death. In these cases, the decedent simply did not care what happened to everything they owned in life, except for their .30-30, which should go to son X, and their .45, which goes to daughter Y. I only mention this to illustrate to those who have not been exposed to this kind of thinking, just how powerful these objects are, and how they can exert their influence in what appears to be illogical ways. This is not some artifact of the past, this is the way that rural America operates in 2007. In many cases, the firearms a family owns are treasured family heirlooms, passed down through generations and acting as vessels for the spirits of the departed. Those who inherit such weapons, even if they have no interest in firearm ownership for their own sake, are weighed down by the expectations of their antecedents. Each weapon holds a wealth of stories, a thousand tales that bring pride and comfort to the survivors. The second aspect is that of self-reliance. When a person learns to operate a firearm, and is trusted by his or her peers to do so, it is a personal achievement that brings pride and confidence. Much like learning to drive a car, learning to write, learning to fell a tree with a chainsaw, or learning to weld steel or write Java code. It becomes tied up with the ego, and with a person's self-worth. Like anything done well, but not quite like anything else, the ownership and use of a firearm brings a sense of pride and accomplishment. Any infringement or hint of infringement on this source of personal pride is suspect, an assault not on the object (the firearm), but an assault on the person's sense of self. To have this source of personal worth removed, no matter how well-intentioned, is anathema to any person who, even in a small way, has mastered some aspect - however small - of the craft.

I choose to avoid the typical arguments about the technical details of gun control legislation for the very important reason that it doesn't matter and will never really matter. It matters mightily to me, of course, but to the vast majority of undecided people who will vote in 2008 it really doesn't. All of the voters who vehemently support gun control measures are NOT going to vote Republican if the Democratic Party comes out in favor of gun ownership. All that matters is that many gun owners think that the Democrats are going to take away their guns. It is truly a shame that all the good things the Democratic Party stands for could be overshadowed by an oft-illusory spectre of gun control, when many of our planks would greatly benefit those who grudgingly swallow their pride and vote Republican solely to eliminate the anti-gun threat. Many people would say it is sad that these people care about their guns more than themselves, but the truth is that the guns really _are_ themselves, their families, and their communities. You can scoff at that (I do, sometimes) but it is reality. Democrats will lose no votes to the Republicans by being pro-gun. Not one. They have much to gain, and there are a lot of more important issues facing our country than gun control, many of which threaten the very existence of our democracy.

I'm not a zealot, but I have to say something, because I am afraid that whoever becomes the Democratic nominee is going to make some offhand comment that will instantly deprive them of millions of votes for no good reason. Let's please stop harping on this issue, and maybe extend an olive branch to the gigantic rural population who is frustrated with the status quo but who will not budge on the gun issue. At the very least, let the states decide.

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Mojorabbit Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Nov-01-07 12:50 AM
Response to Original message
1. I personally know
two people who voted against Kerry due to the gun issue. I own guns and did not know what to say. It was that important to them. Other than that issue they would have voted Dem.
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Buzz cook Donating Member (190 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Nov-01-07 03:31 PM
Response to Reply #1
6. I know more than one or two that voted against dems
Because of abortion. More than a few that voted against dems because they don't like gays.

There will always be one issue voters. I don't think it's good policy to carter to the few and alienate the many.
After all the democratic party won the election of 2000 and 2004. Or at least if the votes had been counted we would have.

Perception is the problem not action. I doubt there is any democrat in a position of power that matches the caricatures painted by the gun fetishists.

Lets look at one issue that the "gun grabbers" have offered and the "brave gun protectors" have opposed. Personal responsibility, the gun owner should make a good faith effort to keep his firearms out of the hands of minors and criminals. If the firearm owner doesn't make a good faith effort to keep firearms out of the hands of minors and criminals then the gun owner a certain amount of liability for how those firearms are used by the minors or criminals that acquire them.

Trigger guards with pistol sales, firearm safety courses, registering private sales of firearms in the same commercial sales are. These are some of the citizen initiatives that the "quivering gun fearing pantie waists" have put forward. In each case thousands and tens of thousands of dollars have been spent to defeat those citizen initiatives.

The problem is fundamentalism, absolutism on the part of the gun lovers. They are exactly like the anti-choice and anti-gay rights activists. Because over the last 30 years absolutism has been main-streamed by the right, the possibility of reasonable dialogue is drastically reduced.

The parallels between the firearms, abortion, and human rights arguments now and the debates over slavery in antebellum America are striking. I'd recommend "The Nation Comes of Age" by Page Smith, part of his excellent People's History of the United States series.
The fervor of the right is the same and that it is being funded and empowered by peoples that are using the issue to maintain or get power for other ends is the same. The absolutist on the left side of the debates are marginalized and lack the same access to political power.
Unlike the human rights debates, firearms can be compromised on and the absolutists of the left would become irrelevant if it were reached.

Buzzcook
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SteveM Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Nov-05-07 10:41 AM
Response to Reply #6
12. Do you wish to deny blacks the right to keep and bear arms?
"The absolutist on the left side of the debates are marginalized and lack the same access to political power."

Not all gun controllers are on the left (re: Alberto Gonzalez, Diane Feinstein, Sarah Brady, Rudy, etc.). In any case, gun controllers/prohis have had great access to MSM which has been almost uniformly anti-gun. Further, they still have considerable influence within the Democratic Party structure and in big-city governments on the coasts and in Chicago. Maryland, for example, remains a hotbed of gun prohibition (see progunprogressive and the on-going debate there).

If you got 100 Southerners into a room and asked them: "Do you wish to deny blacks the right to keep and bear arms?" what do you think the answer would be? Think times have changed?

This association of gun rights with antebellum slavery is peculiar when one considers that gun control laws for nearly 200 years were designed to keep blacks from arming.

While you differentiate between human rights and "firearms," the Second Amendment is framed as a "right of the people." As such, compromise on "firearms" can and should be limited just as with the other rights in the Constitution. Frankly, the current state of gun laws seems rather reasonable to me (except for the notable anti-gun locales of D.C., Chicago, SF, etc.).
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Buzz cook Donating Member (190 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Nov-05-07 05:02 PM
Response to Reply #12
13. I don't want to take anyones firearms.
Yes the gun debate is notoriously racist. You don't have to look much further than the reactions to the Black Panthers legally carrying firearms into the California state house.
You seem to think it's those people who favor regulation that are promoting racist policies. I think the opposite is true.
Just as the voting rights of African Americans are being stripped by making it illegal for felons to vote. So is their ability to own firearms being limited by the same means.
The firearm regulations I support do place place a greater burden on the lower economic classes. As African Americans are unfortunately more likely to be in a lower economic class, those regulations would effect them more than the white firearm owner. But that is true even without regulation. The economic policies of the right do more to restrict firearm ownership among minorities than do any sensible firearm regulations.
The main stream media's portrayal of violent gun crime wears a disproportionately black face. That coverage leads us to tough on crime initiatives such as three strikes that disproportionately effect African Americans and the poor. I don't think I've seen a news show devoted to advocating gun control on ABC, CBS, or NBC since the debates over the "Saturday night specials" back when Ronnie was president. Even then advocacy might have been too strong a word.

The pro-gun movement is, like the modern republican party, an outgrowth of of the anti civil rights back lash. Just as Ronald Reagan used welfare queens as the racist sub-text of his campaign, so do the pro-gun forces use fear of gangstas to promote their absolutism.


I differentiate between gun rights and human rights because a firearm is not a human.

Anti-gun control arguments often say that the 2nd amendment enshrines the right to self protection. That confuses the concepts, self protection is a human right and is morally absolute, firearms are a (dubious) means to that end. I may have a right to own a vibrator, but the vibrator doesn't protect my right to consensual sex.

I would hope you agree that your right to personal protection is greater than another's 'right' to unrestricted access to firearms.


Buzzcook
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Tejas Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-06-07 08:05 AM
Response to Reply #13
14. I disagree on several points but well written n/t
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SteveM Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Nov-08-07 03:55 PM
Response to Reply #13
18. The push for gun control clearly penalizes blacks in the inner cities...
as well as ANY poor person. Most of the restrictive laws are pushed by liberals/progs, but the burden falls heaviest on the urban poor; i.e., blacks. And liberals/progs shared the horror of racists (but perhaps for different reasons) when The Black Panthers (some 40 years ago) legally demonstrated with guns; I mean, weren't blacks supposed to behave non-violently and be like M.L.K.? When I first saw the Panthers demonstrate with guns, I didn't like it, either. But I also said to myself "what took 'em so long?"

So the promotion of gun laws continues to have racist overtones; only the names of the advocates have changed.

"The economic policies of the right do more to restrict firearm ownership by minorities than do any sensible firearm regulations." Please explain this. One of the reasons for cheap firearms (recalling another thread of yours) is to allow the poor to obtain protection. I am also curious as to how the "burden" of your firearms legislation will fall most heavily on blacks. (Doesn't that negate your argument that "the opposite is true?")

As for felons, many people advocate the revocation of voting rights for felons. I actually favor restoration of the rights of most non-violent felons. How many gun-controllers, do you think, would advocate the restoration of 2A rights to convicted felons?

Your argument that the pro-gun movement is an outgrowth of the "anti-civil rights backlash" is fanciful if not on its head. The "pro-gun" movement was in response to moves regulating and banning firearms after the 60s' assassinations and the "civil rights backlash." It is hard to imagine how any "pro-gun" group could fight increased restrictions on firearms and be called racist! Certainly, there was no line-item exception as to who owned guns put in place by the NRA, etc., as was placed on blacks by Southern states well into the 20th century. Like it or not, the NRA and other groups nailed the racist Jim Crow "gun control" coffin shut. Now, the "burden" of race is on the modern gun-control movement which knows full-well where the impact of gun control will fall.

Of course, self-defense is an absolute natural right (though some of the gun-control advocates on these pages and in the gun-control movement would deny such). That said, the "right to keep and bear arms" may or may not be natural (depending on your view of Blackstone); but the right is there nonetheless.

"Unrestricted access" to guns is not my position (see upstream) and, yes, my right to personal protection is therefore more important than someone's purist belief in a crowded theater.

I don't understand your analogy about vibrators.

Good discussion.



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Aventurier Donating Member (43 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Nov-23-07 12:00 AM
Response to Reply #6
22. Excellent Points
You understand the issue very well. Kudos.

The problem is that both sides (not the politicians, the actual people) are uncompromising.

Your proposed measures are mild and insipid. Nonetheless, they would be anathema to the pro-gun crowd (using the "slippery slope" argument). This is, as you adroitly observe, the same as the resistance to the "partial-birth" abortion ban - it's the same "slippery slope" argument, except from the other side. At the same time, such simple measures will not motivate the vehemently anti-gun crowd and thus there is no point in espousing such a position, for there is no political advantage in doing so.

You are absolutely right about compromise, but I fear that any such compromise will be fodder for the machine and exploited, to the detriment of the republic.
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gatts Donating Member (62 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Nov-01-07 01:22 AM
Response to Original message
2. Idiocy
Oh, this'll be fun. Where to start?

In almost every instance, the people opposed to private gun ownership are well-armed with evidence for the evil nature of firearms, for of all the great evils that have been committed on earth, the number is few where no gun is wielded.


Really? Even the idiot creationists can claim around 5600 years worth of atrocities done without a gun. It doesn't take a very long stroll through the history books to find people slaughtering each other or committing atrocities with swords, sticks, or even many particularly poor ideologies.

The only counterweight is to articulate a _positive_ effect of private gun ownership, something which is not only elusive, but difficult to articulate to people whose reality is framed in gun-free terms.


Not a single genocide committed against an armed populace since the invention of the semiautomatic, and very few great evil acts. Between 80,000 (Census data) and 2.5 million (progun side) estimated events per year where guns are used to prevent or stop crimes in progress. A fairly nice meditation-like training system. An identified group of CCW holders less likely to commit a crime than even the police officers that did their background checks.

After all, guns are not human beings, they are objects, so why should the ownership of a material good be as important as societal progress, equality, human rights, or any number of other issues which _should_ be more important?


One could, quite easily, point out that. One could also point out that guns are vital to an important human right -- the right to life, and as a result, the right to defense of that life. It's very, very hard for the average individual to prevent an attacked by even an unarmed attacker with his or her bare hands. We spend eight hours a day typing on computers or working at the mill, while the average violent criminal does not tend to do so -- Matthew Shepard's killers had an (stolen) gun (which it would have been illegal for them to purchase), but they never had to use it

One could also argue that in many cases the right to bear arms becomes a matter of equality, moving from racially or culturally biased systems like that in Massachusetts or California, where the wrong skin color or place of residence will invalidate a normally acceptable license application, to more equal systems. One could argue that the right to own an object itself is an important part of human rights.

Finally, one could argue that private, legal gun ownership is not contradictory to any of those metrics, and is often an important aspect of them. It's hard to live in a society where everyone is equal, human rights are respected, and society has the ability to progress when a small minority are capable of easily upsetting the balance (apply Paretto's law to non-gun combat), and those wanting to protect themselves must, at best, violate the law or simply lay back and hope for the best.

See progunprogressive.com for an example of an individual hoping to work for societal advancement in a situation where private gun ownership would be useful, but it limited.

To argue for the right to own firearms, solely on the basis of the constitution, is to give up all semblance of reason, because the constitution is by necessity a living document, completely malleable.


Hence the section set up specifically to amend the thing. The text even gives an 'escape clause' -- should a well-regulated militia ever become unnecessary for the security of a free state, the whole thing is moot. On the other hand, it's clearly not the case: United States law still regulates and defines the militia forces, and can only do so as long as said law is necessary. If you'd like, however, we can start having the Republicans define away right to freedom of association, speech, and religion (or avoidance thereof), privacy, et all.

I'm always amazed by self-described liberals who allow any credence to the concept that, because a group fear something on an illogical, emotional level, we need to pander to them, just because they claim to fear a chunk of metal rather than the chunk of metal's owners. Should we pander to homophobic freaks if they choose to claim offense at the lubricant rather than the person?
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SteveM Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Nov-01-07 03:04 PM
Response to Reply #2
5. To persuade others is not to pander to them. You want to turn them off?
And the idea that some are pandering to homophobic freaks is a piece of Rube Goldberg logic. I have seen the results of reasonable discourse in persuading "anti-gun" people to take a different view. For an example of this, refer to the site you cited, Progunprogressive. Here, a leader in the gun control movement was persuaded not only by the instant legal and social arguments of pro-2A people, but more importantly by the latter's humanity.

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Aventurier Donating Member (43 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Nov-22-07 11:47 PM
Response to Reply #2
21. Idiocy
I don't understand your tone and really can't figure out what your point is. I had to read your text several times before I figured out that you were actually attacking me for trying to understand the anti-gun hysterics.

I accept your accusation of pandering. While I, indeed, can be justly accused of that, I feel that there is no other way forward but to break down the wall. The ignorance of the classical left on gun issues is so vast and their zeal for gun control is so uncompromising that it is written into the very foundations of the Democratic Party. This needs to change, hence my diatribe.

Your historical arguments are really good, but I don't really consider historical pre-gun atrocities like the slaughters at Tirgoviste by Vlad Tepes, Carthage, the crusades, or even the murderous ravages of Nero to be even a drop in the bucket compared to modern gun-assisted genocides like the Holocaust, Pol Pot, Darfur, Stalin, Central American CIA Death Squads, etc. Yes, those non-firearm assisted atrocities were terrible, but their scale is orders of magnitude less than what we more civilized primates can dish out, as clearly evidenced by the last few centuries. This probably has more to do with population density than technology, however, which your argument made me realize despite the fact that you didn't actually bring up that particular counter-argument. I was actually trying to evoke the emotional sense of how an anti-gun person views the world, than to make a historical point, and in some manner illustrate the emotions behind the knee-jerk reactions. I thought this would be helpful for everyone, and obviously it was not helpful to you.

You make several valid points. Your human-rights/cultural/racial argument is solid. You're right about the constitution, but you misunderstand my point. My point is that the document should not be the foundation upon which all pro-gun arguments are based, because it is just a document. The constitution could be amended tomorrow, and where then would we take shelter? Arguments for gun rights, or against them, need to be made from life and reality. I happen to be pro-gun, but I buttress my arguments with data, not with a piece of paper crafted in some bygone era. Because that piece of paper can be changed by a simple vote, in which case constitutional arguments evaporate. My reason for writing what I did was not to denigrate the constitution, but to illustrate the transitory nature of it, and to encourage people to avoid the pitfall of defining their rights solely through the document. Don't just tell me the document is right, tell me WHY it is right, in 2007. That is the argument that matters, not the definition of a militia or the rationale behind the word "People". Those arguments are for lawyers to use while defending the constitution. The important argument for responsible, progressive gun owners to make is the argument for private gun ownership, sans the legalese, in 2007. I'm not saying the constitutional argument is invalid (It's perfectly valid), I'm merely saying that the underlying reasons why private gun ownership is an important and positive right are more important than the ancient legal definitions embodied in the constitution. I hope that makes sense, if not, then my communication skills have failed me once again.



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superkia Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Nov-01-07 05:29 AM
Response to Original message
3. I think we should be able to have the same guns our government...
have. If our government continues its direction with its control and gets completely out of hand, how does the American public defend itself? The government should have to fear a consequence of turning into a dictatorship and enslaving its citizens, even now, we are just sheep that have to go along with whatever they want, no matter what it is, we have no fight. I don't believe that 2nd ammendment said that citizens could only have a pee shooter to defend themselves and their property and their government could have a rifle or whatever the most lethal weapon was.

I understand people will argue that crazy people with bigger badder guns will do more harm but the way to fix that is by laws and enforcement. Because our government allows things to get out of hand in any area, we then give up more and more freedoms to be "protected" in that same area.
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Boomer 50 Donating Member (288 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Nov-02-07 11:02 AM
Response to Reply #3
7. Most people miss an important point
You bring up. Sure the idea of a gun free Utopia sounds great, but as we've seen with Bush and others from both parties, people will take advantage of a situation for their own gain. Do we as Democrats really want to be ruled under the iron fist of someone like Bush but who is more willing to deny us our freedoms for his own power?

If guns are banned or we are restricted to inferior designs, it makes such possible actions that much easier. We enjoy the right to disagree with those who support the war in Iraq, support the Patriot Act, etc. If we lose our right to keep and bear arms, we have no grounds to say "NO" and voice our opinions and concerns.

This is the core reason for the 2nd Amendment. By willingly giving up that right, we have given up the right to disagree and stand by our convictions. Gun control will kill our party, nation and possibly our very lives. If you support gun control, make sure you know what you are asking of every person out here. Make sure you are willing to accept that you are giving up every right you enjoy now. Be comfortable with passing that tyranny on to your children.
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iverglas Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Nov-02-07 03:01 PM
Response to Reply #7
8. how *do* you people explain ... uh ... reality?
I'm sure you at least vacation here once in a while.

By willingly giving up that right, we have given up the right to disagree and stand by our convictions. Gun control will kill our party, nation and possibly our very lives.

Of course, nobody's asking you to give up that "right". But in so far as you presumably think that we Canadians have, and since we obviously do have "gun control", how *do* you explain, oh, this:


WHEN BUSH COMES TO SHOVE
Demonstrators protest the upcoming two-day official visit by U.S. President George W. Bush in Ottawa, November 29, 2004. United States President George W. Bush will come to Ottawa on November 30 for a two-day official visit. REUTERS/Mike Casses
http://www.commondreams.org/headlines04/1130-02.htm
Alex McDonough, an MP from Halifax, was furious Monday with what she saw as government efforts to stifle dissent. I am aghast that the Parliamentary Secretary for Canada-U.S. relations would urge Atlantic Canadians to 'take a pause from expressing our view' during Mr. Bush's visit, she said.


Up to 15,000 demonstrators took to the streets of Ottowa on Nov. 30 to protest the first official visit to Canada by US President George W. Bush.
Photo courtesy Ottowa Indymedia Center


?


"Ottowa" ... I was on the streets in Ottawa, myself ...


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Tejas Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Nov-02-07 04:12 PM
Response to Reply #8
9. well you party animals


"Arrested: 23 in total"

"Complaints and possible legal action may be forthcoming re: police brutality in several of the arrests."

but wait, if you act now...

"...and one serious incident of police misconduct was reported where
two PGA vans were arbitrarily confiscated while all the occupants of the
van were told to get out of the van as they were under arrest. This was
done with some sort of rifle drawn. No reason was given for the arrest no
charges were laid and no cause was apparent and no reason was given for
this police confiscation of vehicles."


"I'm sure you at least vacation here once in a while."

nope! ;)




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iverglas Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Nov-02-07 05:51 PM
Response to Reply #9
11. you appear to be reading:
http://www.ainfos.ca/04/dec/ainfos00030.html

Ottawa-November 30th George W Bush paid a presidential visit to Ottawa. He was met with a massive anti war demonstration. One of the most prominent participant groups was the People's Global Action (GPA).

Actually, I was there, and I've never heard of "People's Global Action". Aw. Their website is dead:
http://www.pgablocottawa.net
But I do see them on the CPCML site --
http://www.cpcml.ca/Tmld2004/D34191.htm#7
-- Communist Party of Canada/Marxist-Leninist. Believe it or not, there are still a dozen Maoists up here. And when I organized a similar protest here in Canada quite a few years back (as the steering committee member in charge of the demonstration/security for an event), I made it my job to keep them out of our events, and insisted that the RCMP assist me in doing so. The Mounties were very helpful. I got reports every half hour of where the CPCMLers were, and by being disorganized we managed to have our demo start a half-hour late, leaving the ten loudmouth Maoists marching around alone instead of at the head of our demo as their more well-organized selves had planned things so they'd be.

Anyhow, back in 2004 I did mill around for a while within four feet or so of that line of cops preventing demonstrators from entering a section of street between the Chateau Laurier hotel and the Conference Centre where Bush was. Making me a whole lot closer to Bush than you'll ever be. Ask google maps for 1 rideau street, ottawa, canada and put it on hybrid view; the green arrow marks the little section of road that was blocked. I was about 1/3 of the way from the big yellow bus to the green arrow, for a while.

I give up. Does blocking off a half-block of road to ensure the security of a visiting head of state constitute oppression? 99% of the people demonstrating against said head of state's presence in our country didn't really think so.

At one point, before we got there, there had been some throwing of stuff at the cops. Quickly squelched by the many more sane people on the scene.

You realize the site you're citing isn't, well, authoritative, right?

For instance, this:
In front of local, national and international press fully poised for the event this forced the police to send in hundreds of riot police to work on the crowd.

didn't actually happen. Trust me. I was eating lunch around the corner.

Twenty-two people were arrested and one serious incident of police misconduct was reported where two PGA vans were arbitrarily confiscated while all the occupants of the van were told to get out of the van as they were under arrest. This was done with some sort of riffle drawn. No reason was given for the arrest no charges were laid and no cause was apparent and no reason was given for this police confiscation of vehicles. Therefore, protest organizers are perceiving it as state interference with peaceful assembly.

Actually, protest organizers -- grown-ups -- wish these obnoxious children would stay the fuck home.

Not by any means to say that we don't have some bad eggs in some positions of enforcement/authority.

You do, though, understand the difference between having some bad eggs and having "given up the right to disagree and stand by our convictions", right? I mean, THAT IS what you said would result from gun control, and that is what that I was mocking. Nobody was talking about moronic self-described anarchist assholes getting themselves in trouble because they can't behave properly.

Now, the day when moronic self-described anarchist assholes who can't behave properly get put in secret prisons, or are actually prevented from expressing their opinions or assembling, well then you might have a point. How are those "free speech zones" doing, anyhow? Anybody shown up yet to liberate the sheep assembled therein at gunpoint?

Oh, by the way, you may have misunderstood something.

Me: how *do* you people explain ... uh ... reality?
I'm sure you at least vacation here once in a while.


You: No.

Perhaps you did really mean to deny even vacationing in reality ...



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Tejas Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-06-07 11:00 AM
Response to Reply #11
15. as usual, your google-fu is weak...but like I said
Edited on Tue Nov-06-07 11:07 AM by Tejas
visit Canada?

I know, never say never, but hopefully none of you will be within 100 miles:

(from your link)
"The crowd was enthusiastic to shout, 'US UK how many kids did you kill
today', 'Bush, Bush we know you your daddy was a killer too' and 'Hey Hey
Ho Ho Georgie Bush has got to go.' One impressive participant was a six
year old child whose proud father let her belt some of these chants over a
mega phone to lead the crowd
."


Y'all should've duct-taped the lids on the koolaid, looking like somebody tampered with it.

;)
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iverglas Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-06-07 03:35 PM
Response to Reply #15
16. I give up
but like I said
visit Canada?


Where, in:

how *do* you people explain ... uh ... reality?
I'm sure you at least vacation here once in a while.


are you seeing anything having to do with Canada?

Your gratuitous musings may be fascinating to someone, but they had nothing to do with what I said. I'm still wondering whether you people ever pay visits to reality. The ability to spout noise like:

By willingly giving up that right, we have given up the right to disagree and stand by our convictions. Gun control will kill our party, nation and possibly our very lives.

in the face of, well, reality, strongly suggests you don't.


(from your link)

Yeah. The link I posted to show how utterly discredited what you posted was -- because it came from the same source, no matter where you may have happened to find it.

So yeah, obviously, I was adopting everything said at that source -- and approving everything those morons might put their kids up to. Or so you would apparently like some really stupid person to believe. Really stupid people being the only ones who might.

Apart from that -- are you having a problem with
'US UK how many kids did you kill today',
'Bush, Bush we know you your daddy was a killer too'
and 'Hey Hey Ho Ho Georgie Bush has got to go.'

? Guess you've never been to an anti-war demonstration in your own country of residence. Colour me not surprised, if so.

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Tejas Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Nov-07-07 12:28 AM
Response to Reply #16
17. Keep digging that hole...
"Yeah. The link I posted to show how utterly discredited what you posted was -- because it came from the same source, no matter where you may have happened to find it."

Says you.

Oh wait, you have no clue as to the source so... fail

and for posterity:

* "So yeah, obviously, I was adopting everything said at that source -- and approving everything those morons might put their kids up to."

* "The crowd was enthusiastic to shout, 'US UK how many kids did you kill
today', 'Bush, Bush we know you your daddy was a killer too' and 'Hey Hey
Ho Ho Georgie Bush has got to go.' One impressive participant was a six
year old child whose proud father let her belt some of these chants over a
mega phone to lead the crowd."




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iverglas Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Nov-09-07 02:18 PM
Response to Reply #17
19. you're absolutely right

People generally call those whose actions they approve "morons".

And honest people generally try to pretend that other people said things they did not say.

Quote me, now. Should be good for some more chuckles, Chuckles.

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Aventurier Donating Member (43 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Nov-23-07 12:04 AM
Response to Reply #7
23. Good
Well said. Good job.
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iverglas Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Nov-01-07 10:01 AM
Response to Original message
4. fascinating

Not.

Pro-gun people sometimes fail to understand the deep-seated, emotional feeling that firearms evoke in those unfamiliar with them as objects handled and dealt with on a day-to-day basis.

And I guess we can stop reading there. Although the rest of that paragraph really is a hoot, I gotta admit.

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Aventurier Donating Member (43 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Nov-23-07 12:09 AM
Response to Reply #4
24. Laugh all your way ...
To defeat. By denigrating and ridiculing people's deep-seated emotional beliefs, you have become the hated elitist caricature that has caused the Democratic Party to be laughed at and ridiculed in so many small towns, full of people who care about the future and who care about this country. Wit is no substitute for reason.
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Tejas Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Nov-23-07 04:26 PM
Response to Reply #24
25. good answer but better used ...
...on someone else. iverglass is a female that lives in Canada where Fully Automatic weapons are regulated about as heavy as the color of peanut butter...but she'll still pop in here and there to let you know how everyone in Canada hates guns and how everyone in the US does too.

;)

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jody Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Nov-02-07 05:47 PM
Response to Original message
10. "find some common ground"? How when my position is I have an inalienable right to keep and bear arms
for self-defense but gun-grabbers say government has the authority to prohibit me from exercising that right and wants to take my handguns away.

Note that 76% of the respondents to a DU poll agree that I "should be allowed to own hand guns".

Please explain to me a "common ground" position.
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Aventurier Donating Member (43 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Nov-22-07 11:04 PM
Response to Reply #10
20. Common Ground
This is the only negative comment that struck home. I've been away hunting so I missed some good discussion and for that I apologize.

I didn't bag any deer, but I paid my $50 for habitat protection and for this I got to see a pair of trumpeter swans feeding in the icy morning fog, and a family of otters munching down bullheads. A flock of scaup came over once while I was up in a tree, miles from any road, and a squirrel had a long one-sided argument with me, which I apparently lost. It was incredible. My BAR never got to speak, but a friend who I took hunting for the first time in his life bagged a deer with his M1 Garand.

Truth is, I don't know what the common ground is. The main thrust of what I wrote is that the promulgation of gun control measures is not going to help defeat the anti-democratic neocon cabal - it is going to make it a lot more difficult. I was trying to convey the humanity of the people arguing both sides, to make it easier to relate to them, and, ideally, punch a hole in the wall. I thought I could help. There are a lot of people on this board, far more informed and qualified than I, to present the legal and statistical minutiae of the issue. I just know very well how gun owners like me (and unlike me) feel, and I know very well how unarmed urban crime victims feel. I know how both sides emotionally construct their arguments and while I come down, always, on the side of private gun ownership, I understand the counter-arguments. Some of them are valid and worthy of discussion, as much as it pains me to say it. Some, of course, are ridiculous.

I guess if you put me on the spot, the "Common Ground" position I was referring to is that the gun control issue is very complex and emotional, and that Democrats as a whole should bury the issue to concentrate on restoring the integrity of the American Republic before making politically suicidal forays into the well-charted yet historically treacherous waters of federal gun control.

Unfortunately, the Democratic politicians are in a poor position to bury this issue. If they say nothing, they will be labeled anti-gun. If they try to court the gun-owner, they will be attacked by their own party, or they will be ridiculed as a panderer.

I don't have any answers, I just don't want us to lose the white house or the congress because of an inability to respond to the inevitable Rovian scaremongering which will no doubt ensue once this election gets fully underway.
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jody Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Nov-23-07 05:11 PM
Response to Reply #20
26. I accep your comments but when opponents on an issue are polarized, then a compromise is impossible.
The only compromise that keeps coming back to my mind is pro-choice for abortion as has been used so effectively by many Democratic candidates.

Pro-choice seems to me to be the only compromise for divisive issues like abortion, RKBA for self-defense, gay-lesbian marriage, etc., when the issue primarily affects a single individual or a pair of people.

Even on issues like that, one side always wants to make it an act or practice that affects society at large however in my opinion such arguments are a stretch.

Sounds like you had a wonderful hunt.

My most treasured memories are of hunts where I did not fire a shot. One in particular was seeing a Black Footed Ferret on a trip to Wyoming. I did not have time to take a picture but thak goodness my mind has a clear picture after 25 years.

:hi:
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Tejas Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Nov-23-07 05:18 PM
Response to Reply #26
28. throw the rest of us a bone!
Quit teasing and bring a camera next time. You and Aventurier could probably show us better than Nat'l Geo.

:)
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Tejas Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Nov-23-07 05:14 PM
Response to Reply #20
27. not sure I understand part of that.
"I just know very well how gun owners like me (and unlike me) feel, and I know very well how unarmed urban crime victims feel. I know how both sides emotionally construct their arguments and while I come down, always, on the side of private gun ownership, I understand the counter-arguments."

Are you saying that "gun owners" and "unarmed urban crime victims" are at odds? These two groups are the "sides"?



"Unfortunately, the Democratic politicians are in a poor position to bury this issue. If they say nothing, they will be labeled anti-gun. If they try to court the gun-owner, they will be attacked by their own party, or they will be ridiculed as a panderer."

I believe they are in a great position to lead, and casting gun control into File 13 will get them their share of 80 million potential gunowner votes (both Democrats and Republicans).

Tell ya what, the current Democratic Presidential candidate that gets endorsed by the NRA will win the '08 election. The antis heads will explode but they'll still have to deal with the fact that despite higher gun ownership...the Moon hasn't cracked wide open, hens are still laying, and blood hasn't inundated this great land.

Thanks for posting Aventurier, interesting take on things, appreciate your time/effort of expanding the field of thought and debate. :)
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Endangered Specie Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Nov-24-07 02:00 PM
Response to Original message
29. Your friend needs to man up some...
"once was giving a tour of my new house to some friends, and a good friend of mine accidentally popped into a room where a gun was laying in plain view. He screamed and actually urinated involuntarily."

wow.
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