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UK Gun Control.......Once more for the deaf people at the back.

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Pert_UK Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Sep-02-03 01:50 AM
Original message
UK Gun Control.......Once more for the deaf people at the back.
1. Let me say that I am not "anti gun". I subscribe wholeheartedly to the philosophy that a gun is an inanimate object - guns don't kill people, Americ....sorry, people kill people. Of course people find it easier to kill people if a gun is handy, but that's neither here nor there - it's not the gun's fault.

2. Pro-RKBA people on this board keep repeating the following mantra, or similar: "Gun crime is on the increase on the UK. They've banned guns entirely. Therefore their gun ban hasn't worked." This is either ignorance, dishonesty or bafflingly bad logic. The ban on guns was brought in solely to prevent perfectly law-abiding citizens from having access to guns. I appreciate that this might sound odd, but after 2 significant massacres by gun-owners with legally held weapons, the government (with massive public and media backing) decided that the risks of just one gun owner going berserk with a gun outweighed the rights of the UK public to participate in shooting as a sport or the collection of working firearms as a hobby. The law was in no way intended to address the use of firearms by criminals, who would, in any case, be obtaining illegal weapons illegally on the black market. It was only aimed at preventing tragedies like Hungerford and Dunblane, which between them claimed 33 lives, many of them children.

3. A key tenet of 2, IMHO is that people can be a) unpredictable b) emotional and c) lazy. No matter how well you know someone you just can't be 100% sure that they won't do something crazy one day. Add into this b), our emotions. Many people will, occasionally, fly into a virtually uncontrollable rage about one thing or another. Fists fly and vases are thrown along with anything else that comes to hand. With large numbers of guns available, sooner or later a gun is going to come into the hand of someone who is having a really, really bad day, hence workplace shootings, domestic shootings and so forth. Yes, the violence MAY still happen if a gun isn't present, but guns make for a uniquely effective way of intimidating, injuring and killing people. Which brings me to c). Of course people can make fertiliser bombs, or improvise gastank flamethrowers or whatever. The thing is, though, that mercifully only a tiny minority could ever be bothered to do so. A revolver provides a quick, accurate, effortless, portable means of killing 6 people. If someone can reach for one in a moment of madness then they may regret that moment for the rest of their lives. Ask them to spend an hour constructing an alternative and equally effective method of wreaking death and I reckon they won't be bothered...it's not fact, but come on, intuitively it sounds right, doesn't it? In a moment of anger you reach for a weapon, you don't go out and play Scrapyard Wars until you've built an RPG.

4. You'll notice that I'm not really proposing any solutions, which makes me about as much use as a chocolate teapot. Well tough. I make no apologies. What I've aimed to do is clarify the UK gun law position so that it's not misused in pro-RKBA arguments any more. I've also clarified my own position - personally, I actually really like guns and would love to be able to shoot pistols at a club in the UK. However, I am FAR happier to sacrifice this privilege in the knowledge that my country has actively legislated against a culture of casual gun use, and that my screwy neighbour isn't legally entitled to buy a Glock just because he doesn't happen to have any convictions. Guns, clearly, are not the problem. The unpredictability of people is not, inherently, a problem. The problems arise when you have a society of unpredictable people with access to guns. People go mad in the UK, and when they do they may attack people with knives or swords, or they may punch the boss when they're fired. They do not, however, shoot people because they don't have guns.

Some quotes and stats to back me up a bit (although you won't like the source):

"Although we have always had some of the tightest gun laws in the world, it is worth noting that pistol shooting was the fastest-growing sport in the country at the time of Dunblane and that there was evidence of a particular growth in gun clubs offering practical shooting or combat shooting activities. We could legitimately point to the spectre of the American style gun culture in which over 30,000 people are killed by gunfire every year and say to the public that we must make sure we do not go down the American road.

The reform of our domestic gun laws is significant not only because it has meant that around 200,000 handguns were handed in and destroyed but because it sends a clear message about what kind of civil society we want to live in. A statement has been made, a position taken, that guns, particularly handguns, are dangerous and unnecessary and we will all be safer if there are fewer of them.

This statement seems to most people self-evidently true, but the war of statistics rages around this simple proposition. Shooters in America will draw on figures which purport to prove that you are safer if you have a gun than if you dont...

The following (UK) facts should help to put the record straight.

1. The overall rise in crimes of violence in 2000 was 16% and the rise in robbery 26% so it is true that we seem to be becoming a more violent society generally...

2. Guns were used relatively rarely in violent crime ie in only 4.7% of robberies in 1999 and 8% of homicides, so the problem is to a very large extent one of non-firearms crime.

3. Handgun homicide figures are very low and since 1980 have fluctuated from 7 in 1988, through to 35 in 1993 and a previous high of 39 in1997. So 42 gun murders in 1999 does not represent a statistically significant increase."

http://www.gun-control-network.org/GRIP.htm



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Rocinante Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Sep-02-03 02:29 AM
Response to Original message
1. What you said
I don't disagree with any of it. This side of the pond is just different from you folks and you are better off. However I own a couple of guns, a shotgun and a .380 pistol. Had a burglar that made his way into the house at two AM one night and I only discovered him when I got up to go to the bathroom. The little bastard had a knife but I was able deflect his jabs and land a few rights to his jaw before he fled. My point? If I could have gotten one of my guns(which I keep hidden)I could at least kept him here till the police arrived. But to be honest, I would have killed the piece of shit where he stood, especially after I found out he cut the phone line outside.
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Shanty Oilish Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Sep-02-03 02:46 AM
Response to Original message
2. Works for you and gore42004
Wouldn't work for me. I couldn't whup a purebred poodle, much less a knife-packing intruder. As for the typical law-abiding citizen who suddenly goes berserk and starts mass murdering, if I were present and packing, he wouldn't murder many.
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Pert_UK Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Sep-02-03 02:59 AM
Response to Reply #2
3. Hoorah! Yes, more guns are the answer! How did I miss that?
Edited on Tue Sep-02-03 02:59 AM by Pert_UK
I deliberately didn't offer an answer to the US gun troubles. If there was an easy answer I'm sure someone smarter than me would have spotted it a while ago.

However, I would make the following comments in response....

You actually don't comment about anything that I've said. You've just trotted out the standard pro-RKBA rhetoric and added a nice bit of macho posturing. I don't have a problem with that in itself. However, I'm not sure why you'd bother to post it in this thread.

I am genuinely stunned that someone could read what I have written, understand it and then make the response that you did. In essence, your solution might as well be that everybody constantly holds each other at gunpoint for the sake of safety. Brilliant.

How many fewer children would have been killed, do you think, if you'd have been there when Thomas Hamilton turned up at the primary school in Dunblane and started shooting? Maybe he'd only have killed a couple? In which case, do you really think we'd been going "Thank God there were 2 gunmen there that day!" rather than "If only there hadn't been any gunmen there".

It staggers me that you can arrogantly offer a smaller massacre of children as a plus point of gun ownership, whilst conveniently overlooking the fact that an absence of guns would have prevented any loss of life.

Maybe my writing is at fault, but you have failed to take in any of my points.
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Rocinante Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Sep-02-03 03:16 AM
Response to Reply #3
4. Did you get your response
confused with me or the other post? I assure you I read and understood what you wrote.
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Pert_UK Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Sep-02-03 03:29 AM
Response to Reply #4
5. My response was to draftcaroline's comments...
and as far as I can tell, that's where they appear on the screen.

I could tell that you'd read and understood where I was coming from. I appreciated your response, although I would add that you comments basically added up to:

1. There was a burglar who attacked you
2. You defended yourself successfully without a gun
3. The burglar left
4. If you'd had a gun handy, you would have killed the burglar
5. The presence of a gun would have led to one more death.

Don't get me wrong, you'd have been within your rights (IMHO) to pull a gun on this guy and to shoot him if he continued to attack you, and I wouldn't mourn for someone who cut phonelines and then entered a house illegally armed with a knife if they got shot while they were doing it. BUT you illustrate the point that a gun would equal another death, which in this case was clearly avoidable. You have effectively stated that you would have preferred the option of acting as judge, jury and executioner for this burglar. So you need to vote for burglary to be punished by death, in order to be consistent.
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Shanty Oilish Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Sep-02-03 08:13 PM
Response to Reply #3
15. Fine, Pert, I'll have another go at it.
I "trotted out the standard rhetoric" because I believe it. I said nothing original; neither did you. The standard views, pro and con, have all been stated and nothing original is likely to advance either side.
Since I'm on the other side, it's a given that I consider the anti-gun side to hold less than respectable ideas, and since I don't respect the intellectual arguments, I don't engage them. I feel they've been sufficiently refuted, you have certainly heard them all, and if you don't agree with them, you just don't.
(Nothing wrong with your writing at all!)
Now about this child massacre. Supposedly it would not have happened, no such massacres would ever happen, if guns were prohibited. I don't agree. As you stated, you can never be 100% sure that someone won't do something crazy one day. In fact, you can be 100% sure that someone will. Someone law-abiding and without a criminal record. Then there's the non-law-abiding criminals and terrorists. So in the gun-free society, this massacre wouldn't happen, that massacre would. Someone who wouldn't do it in the gun-free world, would be emboldened by the availability of a gun to do it in the gun-legal world; and somebody who wouldn't risk it in the gun-legal world, would be emboldened to do it in the gun-free world.
Gun laws, as you say, do not address criminals. That's the problem. They render non-criminals less able to defend themselves and others.

As the pro-gun folks say, by your logic we ought to outlaw pools and cars and matches, because the lazy and emotional and unpredictable people in our midst have been known to kill with these things. Indeed, pools and cars and matches are of little use, defensively. Whereas a gun is very effective against a gun.

Back to that massacre. It's a gun-free society and some lunatic still comes by a gun and starts shooting children. If I'm there and have no gun, I die feeling betrayed by the lawmakers who left me no option. If I'm there and have a gun, I use it, and quite a few people do indeed say, "Thank God there were 2 gunmen there that day!"

And I go to prison, no doubt, regardless. That's wrong.

In closing, I don't agree with your depiction of a gun-legal society as one in which everyone constantly holds each other at gunpoint. There are far more criminals than there are lazy/crazy people, anyway; but whichever they be, it is only the predators who have good reason to feel inhibited by the presence of guns.

BTW I don't normally carry a gun in public. Reason being, I don't feel surrounded by unpredictable crazy people with no criminal record. And I live in a place where criminals have to think twice about committing mayhem, because I COULD be carrying a gun legally.
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Pert_UK Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Sep-02-03 08:49 PM
Response to Reply #15
17. Thank you for clearing it up and some intelligent comments.
Point by point...

Nobody is saying that there won't be another massacre - as you rightly point out, people do go mad and often find a way of wreaking terrible damage when they do. However, what I can be sure of is that there will never be another massacre involving legally-held guns in the UK. My government has taken a step to make it CONSIDERABLY MORE DIFFICULT to go on a killing spree. Thomas Hamilton, the man who committed the Dunblane massacre, by all accounts loved guns. Do I think that a gun caused him to kill all those children and their teacher? No, that would be absurd. Do I think that he just MIGHT not have done it if he hadn't nurtured a love for guns and then had access to them on the day he finally went completely mad? Yes, I do. Do I think that he'd have killed far fewer if he'd gone in there with almost any other weapon? Yes. Undoubtedly. Did having a gun make it trivially easy for him to kill so many, so quickly? Yes, it did.

"It's a gun-free society and some lunatic still comes by a gun and starts shooting children." - that's a possibility, granted. But it's massively less likely. You admit that people do, sometimes, flip out and that's an inevitable part of being human. If you admit that, isn't it better that guns aren't available to them? The odds of a lunatic "coming across" a gun and using it to commit mass murder are hugely lower than the odds of mass murder when a legal gun owner goes mad. The gun is already there, it takes no effort or money to acquire it, it represents a temptation. People who flip out use whatever weapon is to hand, and therefore if there's a gun there then the outcome is going to be worse.

One more point I'll make, which I hope throws some of the pro-RKBA argument back against you. Isn't it more likely that a criminal will choose to arm himself with a gun and use it up-front if he believes it's possible that his target is armed? It's just my opinion, but it seems obvious that the argument cuts both ways - criminals are dissuaded from crimes because there might be armed members of the public there who could shoot them vs criminals need to be more and more heavily armed in order to continue to commit crimes.

Criminals will continue to be criminals and will continue to use whatever tools they require to do their "job" and avoid capture. Aren't they more likely to go armed and be trigger-happy if they believe that they're going to face armed resistance?

"Since I'm on the other side, it's a given that I consider the anti-gun side to hold less than respectable ideas, and since I don't respect the intellectual arguments, I don't engage them. I feel they've been sufficiently refuted" - my personal opinion is that there aren't too many 'facts' involved in the RKBA debate, and those facts that do exist are stretched this way and that depending on personal interpretation. Therefore, it seems to me that the majority of the subject revolves around opinion, and opinion can be altered slightly or completely reversed, augmented and honed, and arguments developed, but only if you listen to the arguments. A big problem in the RKBA debate is that people have got tired of listening, and now just repeatedly trot out standard phrases rather than addressing the points raised, which inevitably means that no progress can be made.

Personally, I like a good debate - you are assuming that all the debating has been done and it's not worth talking any more, but by just assuming that you're right and nothing else is worth listening to, IMHO you should give up the right to participate in the discussion. I'm not saying you don't have a right to an opinion, or to express it strongly, but there's no point talking if you won't back up your own position or consider the arguments of the opposition.
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Pert_UK Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Sep-02-03 03:31 AM
Response to Original message
6. Going offline now. I look forward to response when I return tomorrow.
:-)

Sleep well now!

P.

P.S.
Can I just mention that I once said, on national television in the UK, that if anyone attacked my mother I would quite happily kill them myself?

Just thought I'd mention it......
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Rocinante Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Sep-02-03 03:43 AM
Response to Reply #6
7. Perhaps you misunderstood
and I don't make my points well. I would have killed the bastard while he was trying to knife me especially if I'd known he'd cut the phone line. It don't matter, that guy is in lockup where he likes to be. From what the detectives tell me he just loves being in prison. ?
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Pert_UK Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Sep-02-03 03:48 AM
Response to Reply #7
8. Absolutely 100% fair enough.
Edited on Tue Sep-02-03 03:50 AM by Pert_UK
It's easy to use hindsight (as I did in my post) to make conclusions.

My point is that if you'd shot him as he attacked you with a knife (especially if you knew that the phone line was cut) then I would be 100% behind you in your right to defend yourself with whatever means you had.

I misunderstood your comment - I thought you were saying "I wish I'd shot him", which is an entirely different thing altogether.

Apologies for the confusion.

BTW - can I point out that if you click "Reply" on the comment that you want to respond to, rather than the last comment posted, then it's easier to follow the discussion point-by-point! (Sorry if you already know this, it's just that your responses to earlier comments keep appearing at the bottom, rather than below the comments you refer back to)!

P.
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Rocinante Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Sep-02-03 04:01 AM
Response to Reply #8
9. Goodnight P
I don't know but maybe I did the reply right. Please continue to educate. In all ways you can. R
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Pert_UK Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Sep-02-03 04:09 AM
Response to Reply #9
10. Thanks.
Thank you for your intelligent comments and for reading what I wrote.

Speak to you tomorrow.

P.

P.S.
I love a good debate, but only when people are prepared to look at the info and use logic in their arguments!
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Spentastic Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Sep-02-03 05:41 AM
Response to Original message
11. Bu.. bu.. bu.. but it's not working!
Hey Pert, you know better than this. Since the U.K banned guns we've become a wild west of gangsters shooting up the mean streets of London. Apart from that's not quite true at all is it. In the main gun crime is socially and geographically restricted in the U.K. Unfortunately, predominantly young black males killing other young black males often drugs are involved. Occurs almost exclusively in inner city areas. The sociological factors underlying this violence are more of a problem than the guns.

The U.S American pro RKBA proponents really, really piss me off when they decide to use the U.K as a demonstration of ineffective gun laws.

"Handgun homicide figures are very low and since 1980 have fluctuated from 7 in 1988, through to 35 in 1993 and a previous high of 39 in1997. So 42 gun murders in 1999 does not represent a statistically significant increase"

Needs repeating over an over. Of course it couldn't have anything to do with our draconian gun laws? No obviously not, it's purely cultural. But on the other hand we have increasing gun crime due to our gun ban. How can that be if we are culturally predisposed towards peace and love?

How many massacres have there been since the ban was introduced? None. Thus far the ban has been 100% effective. That doesn't mean to say that there will not be an outrage. However, at the very least the perpetrator will have had to commit at least one criminal act before perpetrating their killings. In my view this increases the chances of them being caught. It also practically eliminates the "disgruntled employee" type shooting.
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Pert_UK Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Sep-02-03 07:06 PM
Response to Reply #11
12. Completely right.
Nothing to add to that really. Thanks Spen.

P.
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Pert_UK Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Sep-02-03 07:07 PM
Response to Original message
13. How come nobody is commenting? People R usually keen to use the UK example
Anybody there? Nobody care to have a discussion about this?

P.
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DoNotRefill Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Sep-02-03 07:14 PM
Response to Reply #13
14. It could be that they're sickened...
by the slave mentality.

"Those who would trade freedom for security will receive neither."
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Pert_UK Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Sep-02-03 08:19 PM
Response to Reply #14
16. Nice try. Now how about commenting on the content?
Rather than just a bizarre and utterly baseless assertion and a rather catchy quotation (without a source).

I respect your right to have an opinion, but only when you can back it up and show me that you're not just mechanically mumbling someone else's crap.

Having a debate and a discussion does not simply involve tossing in a piece of biased propaganda and then sitting back as if you've won.

Explain how you are attacking my position. Explain, if you like, how CHOOSING to live in a society that very publicly states that guns are NOT an acceptable part of civilised life gives us "slave mentality".

The UK NEVER allowed guns to be used in self-defense, but a statistically small number of people were licensed to use guns in sport. Some of them abused that privilege and wreaked mass murder. Explain how the VAST MAJORITY backing the removal of ALL guns from public hands constitutes an infringement of my freedom.

One cannot live in a "free" democratic society without accepting that there will be rules which govern what is and what isn't acceptable behaviour. Many things are forbidden, generally with the intention of protecting the safety of the majority, and the gun ban happens to be one of those things.

It is unarguably the case that the law banning guns was HUGELY popular and totally successful - there has not been one workplace, school, family or random shooting in the UK using a legally held weapon since the gun ban was introduced.

We've foregone our "right" to own firearms and received a safer society - we no longer are free to own guns, but are free to live without the threat of another massacre using a legal weapon. I'll take that exchange, thanks.
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DoNotRefill Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Sep-02-03 09:03 PM
Response to Reply #16
18. heh...
"It is unarguably the case that the law banning guns was HUGELY popular and totally successful - there has not been one workplace, school, family or random shooting in the UK using a legally held weapon since the gun ban was introduced."

So, you're saying that an illegal shooting with a legally owned gun is somehow morally worse than an illegal shooting with an illegally held gun?

Since all handguns were banned, has the number of homicides committed with firearms increased or decreased in England?

"We've foregone our "right" to own firearms and received a safer society - we no longer are free to own guns, but are free to live without the threat of another massacre using a legal weapon. I'll take that exchange, thanks."

But hasn't your overall chance of being illegally shot gone UP since the ban? What relevance does the status of the weapon have?

"Explain how the VAST MAJORITY backing the removal of ALL guns from public hands constitutes an infringement of my freedom."

You no longer have the right to defend yourself. You have to "lie there and take it". That's not a condition compatible with personal freedom. Your society has gone further and further away from personal liberty, as shown by things like the establishment of public security cameras (Big Brother-esque, isn't it?) and the removal of the right to travel (specifically for suspected "football hooligans" and the like who haven't been convicted of a crime). Hell, I hear that they're trying to ban the new "assault weapons"...the heavy glass mugs you drink out of. I also hear that you need to have permission from the police to fly the British flag now over personally owned property, lest you offend somebody. Personal freedom, my ASS.

I've travelled to England. I'll never go back.
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Pert_UK Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Sep-02-03 09:25 PM
Response to Reply #18
20. Hmmmm.......nice try.
"So, you're saying that an illegal shooting with a legally owned gun is somehow morally worse than an illegal shooting with an illegally held gun?" - nope. Not saying that at all.

What I AM saying is that LESS shootings are good. When you could legally hold guns in the UK, several people misused that privilege to commit massacres, others accidentally shot themselves and others, others used their guns to commit suicide or commit individual murders. None of those have happened since the ban on guns.

"Since all handguns were banned, has the number of homicides committed with firearms increased or decreased in England?" - not sure, although it could easily have risen, but that's IRRELEVANT, as I keep pointing out...Violent crime in the UK has increased. Gun crime has increased alongside it, given that gun crime is a violent crime. However, and ONCE AGAIN, the handgun ban has nothing whatsoever to do with this issue. Increased use of firearms by drug gangs and other criminals is an entirely separate issue to the ban on legally held firearms. More criminals are choosing to use guns and there are more guns around, hence the rise.

Here's the point, which you've managed to miss repeatedly.

As an example, there were 42 gun murders in the UK in 1999. All of them by criminals using illegal weapons. The ONLY POSSIBLE RESULT of even more guns being available, is that this figure would rise. Maybe, in a perfect world, none of the legal gun owners would have used their weapon illegally in 1999, but the only way to be sure is to ensure they don't have a gun.

"You no longer have the right to defend yourself. You have to "lie there and take it". That's not a condition compatible with personal freedom. " - complete crap. You are practically making the assumption that each and every person in the UK is going to be attacked and be unable to defend themself solely because they don't have a gun. Thankfully, the vast majority of people in the UK never find themselves in that situation, and virtually nobody has to face the trauma of being held at gunpoint. Freedom is always about compromise and the UK public have chosen that they neither need or want personal access to firearms for self-defence.

I agree wholeheartedly that every year a handful of lives might be saved and attacks/robberies prevented if UK citizens were able and chose to arm themselves with guns. However, the flipside is that overall deaths by gunfire would rocket, including the inevitable accidental deaths, misuse of guns in crime and suicides.

"The level of gun ownership world-wide is directly related to murder and suicide rates and specifically to the level of death by gunfire."

'International Correlation between gun ownership and rates of homicide and suicide.' Professor Martin Killias, May 1993.
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DoNotRefill Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Sep-02-03 10:15 PM
Response to Reply #20
22. Less shootings...
"What I AM saying is that LESS shootings are good. When you could legally hold guns in the UK, several people misused that privilege to commit massacres, others accidentally shot themselves and others, others used their guns to commit suicide or commit individual murders. None of those have happened since the ban on guns."

So, the use of legally owned handguns to commit acts of violence was serious, right? Then, by your logic, the total numbers of guns used to shoot people should have decreased considerably after the ban was enacted, right? If it didn't, why not? What about substitution? If people couldn't get guns legally, might they get them illegally, and still commit the same acts with them? With the suicides, has the suicide rate in England dropped, stayed the same, or even increased? Is committing suicide with a gun somehow worse than committing suicide by car or train? If a person who would have committed suicide with a gun instead kill himself with a car, is that somehow morally better? I can't fathom that...after all, the person is still dead, and with a car, there's more risk of accidentally killing somebody else than with a gun.

"I agree wholeheartedly that every year a handful of lives might be saved and attacks/robberies prevented if UK citizens were able and chose to arm themselves with guns. However, the flipside is that overall deaths by gunfire would rocket, including the inevitable accidental deaths, misuse of guns in crime and suicides."

So, by this logic, before the ban, gun crime was really high, and decreased after the ban? Misuse of guns in crime has CERTAINLY skyrocketed. And the suicide rate hasn't dropped one iota, leading me to think that people have used other methods.

Before the ban, the total number of gun crimes was divided between weapons owned legally and weapons owned illegally (that's your classification). Yet after the ban was passed, the use of legal guns in crime disappeared (because there was no such thing any more) while the use of illegal guns in crime MORE than made up the difference. That tells me that the law didn't do dick to cut down on crime, it merely redefined parts of it. Given that, I can see the ban as nothing but a PEOPLE control issue, NOT a crime control issue.

"and virtually nobody has to face the trauma of being held at gunpoint."

Except the dead people...I assume that if they were shot, they WERE held at gunpoint, weren't they? And isn't it true that more people are being held at gunpoint now than were BEFORE the ban???

"Freedom is always about compromise"

Keep compromising, and you'll have NO freedom left. "Freedom" is about "do whatever you want provided that you don't hurt anybody or infringe on somebody else's rights." It's never been about compromise. Churchill knew that....it's a shame that modern Britons apparently don't.

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Pert_UK Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Sep-02-03 10:55 PM
Response to Reply #22
23. Please try to follow what I'm saying and use logical argument...
Edited on Tue Sep-02-03 10:56 PM by Pert_UK
"by your logic, the total numbers of guns used to shoot people should have decreased considerably after the ban was enacted, right?"

I have never said anything like that, nor does it logically follow from my comments. You've made that up. I've said that legally held guns cannot be used to shoot people if those guns are removed from the legal owners. That's tautologically true - a non-existent gun has never hurt anyone.

Consider the following (I'm making up the stats, it's an example):

"Every year for 5 years a legally held gun had been used to commit a murder. That equals 5 murders. The population decide that those 5 murders could have been prevented if guns couldn't be held legally, and legislate against gun ownership. All 200,000 legally held guns are returned. There are no murders using legally held guns next year.

However, at the same time the Mafia launch an all-out campaign to take over the drug trade in London, and send 200,001 button men over to the UK, each with a gun, and they start massacring all rival drug gangs. 500 people die in gun violence.

The number of guns have gone up. The number of gun deaths have gone up. Would we be right to conclude that it was wrong to take away legal firearms, given that the stats point to a rise in gun crime afterwards? Of course not, you have still taken a large net number of guns out of circulation (there would have been double the number without the ban) and have effectively saved 1 life through the ban."

Your comments:

"So, by this logic, before the ban, gun crime was really high, and decreased after the ban?" - NO AGAIN!!! Read what I'm saying. Never said gun crime was high and it doesn't logically follow from my comments. Please try to appreciate what "logically follows" means. I also never said gun crime decreased after the ban, I said that crimes using legally held weapons did WHICH IS ALL I'M TALKING ABOUT.

"That tells me that the law didn't do dick to cut down on crime, it merely redefined parts of it."

Fuck me, I'm really struggling to follow you here......

I'll try again. Here we go....

The majority of gun owners (nearly all of them) were responsible, law abiding people. Some did, regrettably, flip out and wreak mayhem and that's why the ban was inacted. Now......did these law abiding responsible people suddenly turn to other methods of crime, or casually dispose of their weapons to criminals when the ban came in? Of course not.

You cannot conclude from the increased use of firearms by criminals that the ban on legally held weapons hasn't had a net negative impact on crime. You cannot conclude that the confiscation and destruction of 200,000 guns in the UK didn't reduce the potential for gun misuse, simply because criminals happened to bring in 300,000 on the black market. That's a net gain of 100,000, rather than the 300,000 net gain if the 200,000 had remained - and don't say that the crims would have only brought in 100,000 if the legal guns were still around, it doesn't work that way.

"Homicide rates tend to be related to firearm ownership levels. Everything else being equal, a reduction in the percentage of households owning firearms should occasion a drop in the homicide rate".

Evidence to the Cullen Inquiry 1996: Thomas Gabor, Professor of Criminology - University of Ottawa:

"The level of gun ownership world-wide is directly related to murder and suicide rates and specifically to the level of death by gunfire."

'International Correlation between gun ownership and rates of homicide and suicide.' Professor Martin Killias, May 1993.



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DoNotRefill Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Sep-02-03 11:23 PM
Response to Reply #23
24. Not quite....
Edited on Tue Sep-02-03 11:26 PM by DoNotRefill
""by your logic, the total numbers of guns used to shoot people should have decreased considerably after the ban was enacted, right?" I have never said anything like that, nor does it logically follow from my comments. You've made that up. I've said that legally held guns cannot be used to shoot people if those guns are removed from the legal owners. That's tautologically true - a non-existent gun has never hurt anyone."

Of course, since the black market in guns is now thriving, can't a person who used to be able to legally own a gun simply buy one illegally? What real difference does it make if a legal or illegal gun is used? If Dunblaine had been committed with illegally owned guns, would it have made ANY difference? Of course not.

"Every year for 5 years a legally held gun had been used to commit a murder. That equals 5 murders. The population decide that those 5 murders could have been prevented if guns couldn't be held legally, and legislate against gun ownership. All 200,000 legally held guns are returned. There are no murders using legally held guns next year."

That doesn't mean that the 5 murders expected in the next 5 years were prevented, however. It's possible that the people who would have committed those murders STILL comitted those murders, either with an illegal gun, or with some other weapon or method.

"Of course not, you have still taken a large net number of guns out of circulation (there would have been double the number without the ban) and have effectively saved 1 life through the ban."

You don't know that ANY life was saved. Why? Because you don't know if another method was used to take that life. People have been killing other people for thousands of years. They managed it just fine before the invention of guns. We still manage it just fine.

"You cannot conclude from the increased use of firearms by criminals that the ban on legally held weapons hasn't had a net negative impact on crime. You cannot conclude that the confiscation and destruction of 200,000 guns in the UK didn't reduce the potential for gun misuse, simply because criminals happened to bring in 300,000 on the black market. That's a net gain of 100,000, rather than the 300,000 net gain if the 200,000 had remained - and don't say that the crims would have only brought in 100,000 if the legal guns were still around, it doesn't work that way."

You're right. There's not enough evidence to make a solid conclusion EITHER way. BTW, prior to the ban, was there a large market for smuggled illegal guns? Or was the situation the same as everywhere else, where the demand creates the supply? Prior to the outlawing of drugs, there was a demand and a supply. Did making the drugs illegal make the demand disappear, or was it simply redirected to illegal methods of procurement? Doesn't the same hold true with guns? As long as there's a DEMAND, will there not be an equal supply, either through legal or illegal means? If a person who would have been able to obtain a gun through legal methods before the ban wants to commit a gun crime, can't they obtain a gun through illegal methods? In other words, as long as they can still obtain them, does it MATTER that the method was legal or illegal? Isn't the net result identical?


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Pert_UK Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Sep-02-03 11:48 PM
Response to Reply #24
25. Briefly, as I have to work.......
My point about the legal gun owners was that they were generally law abiding and responsible citizens. You seem to be suggesting that they would have obtained guns illegally if they hadn't had the opportunity to acquire them in accordance with the law. This is simply not true.

"can't a person who used to be able to legally own a gun simply buy one illegally?" - that is another one of the main points. The thing is, people generally obey the laws. Responsible people who wanted to own guns used to go and register with the police, pass a test, visit a gun shop and buy one. Guess what they do now? Nothing. They don't head down into a dodgy pub in an inner city to obtain guns illegally - they're not so determined to get a gun that they would break laws and risk imprisonment.

In addition, there aren't any gun clubs any more, so there isn't a social side to the shooting or an easy location to shoot without being arrested. You've never really been able to hunt with pistols in the UK, so that's out too.

I totally agree that people can find other ways to commit murder or wholesale slaughter, and that it would be wrong to conclude that all murders previously committed with legal guns wouldn't have happened at all if guns weren't present. However, guns make an easy, portable and handy means of committing mass murder, and it's far more plausible to suggest that removing a lethal weapon from an environment reduces the risk of murder, than it is to suggest that those murders would still have happened if the perpetrator had had to physically stick a knife in someone or find another means of killing them.

To be honest, if Dunblane and Hungerford had been committed with illegal weapons, I doubt whether there would have been so much focus on taking legally held weapons away from people - it would have switched to more action against the illegal arms trade. However, as those massacres WERE both committed with legal weapons, it seems sensible that the availability of legal weapons was addressed. It seems odd to say that we wouldn't be attacking guns if they didn't ever cause problems - of course we wouldn't. But they did cause problems and the UK gov tried to address them.

Criminals buy guns illegally in order to commit crimes. That's a very bad thing. Criminals are bad and I wish there weren't any, and that they weren't armed.

Formerly in the UK, there were 200,000+ guns in private hands, and within easy reach of their owners in the event of a serious mental breakdown or personal trauma. Now there aren't. Their owners now need to put in a bit more effort to wreak widespread havoc, which has got to be a good thing.

The thing you've got to remember is that legal gun owners didn't just switch to buying guns illegally after the ban, and criminals have always had to buy guns illegally, so your arguments about supply and demand don't apply - I'm talking about why the UK banned handguns, and your talking about criminals using guns. Two different things.
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DoNotRefill Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-03-03 12:13 AM
Response to Reply #25
26. But....
those legal gun owners willing to commit murder have shown that they ARE willing to break the law, haven't they? If they're willing to commit murder, what would stop them from getting a gun illegally? You can't simply write it off as saying "legal gun owners will not break the law", or your entire position collapses. It's the legal gun owners that WILL break the law that's the problem, isn't it? Isn't the ban really just disarming the people who are unwilling to break the law, while leaving those willing to break the law in a better position than ever to do so?

"They don't head down into a dodgy pub in an inner city to obtain guns illegally - they're not so determined to get a gun that they would break laws and risk imprisonment."

Right. Only thoe ones willing to break the law will do that. Of course, that undoubtedly includes those "legal gun owners" who would commit murder, provided that murder is illegal there. Is it? ;-)


"Formerly in the UK, there were 200,000+ guns in private hands, and within easy reach of their owners in the event of a serious mental breakdown or personal trauma."

And here I thought that handguns, prior to the ban, had to be stored at the shooting clubs, and couldn't be legally "checked out". Silly me. ;-)
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Pert_UK Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-03-03 12:35 AM
Response to Reply #26
27. Any evidence for guns being kept at gun clubs by law?
I recall that being one possible recommendation instead of a total ban, but IIRC guns could be stored at home in an appropriate gun safe.

BTW - that's much better logic. You called me out on a genuine contradiction in my comments, and I applaud it.....although I'm not 100% sure it works. I'll think about it and get back to you.

What I was getting at, though, is the amount of effort involved and accessibility. Sometimes peope flip out "all at once" and if they do and they have a gun in their home, that gun could be used in an impulsive act of violence. That gun is more likely to cause severe injury and death and more difficult to defend against than all other household weapons. If someone flips out and reaches for a knife or a baseball bat, then the odds are that their victims will be fewer and have a better chance of defending or escaping. Someone who flips out all at once is unlikely to go to the time, effort and trouble of finding an illegal supplier of weapons.

P.
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Pert_UK Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-03-03 08:11 PM
Response to Reply #26
30. Follow up points......
Edited on Wed Sep-03-03 08:13 PM by Pert_UK
I've had a bit of a think about it, and here we go.....but this isn't thought out so well as to be deductively thorough, it's my attempt for now.

First off, nobody (that I know of) has ever suggested anything other than the vast majority of legal gun owners in the UK (prior to the ban) were anything other than responsible, law-abiding people. They were law-abiding people who happened to enjoy shooting or collecting handguns, which entailed thorough background checks, regular interaction with the police and strict controls. Gun ownership wasn't a "casual" thing prior to the ban. In addition, nobody has suggested that they were all gun-obsessed (although some certainly were). Many active shooters would have been members of gun clubs, as gun clubs/ranges would be the only place that they could actually shoot (generally speaking). There would have been no point for the majority of them to source guns illegally following the ban (as there was nowhere to use them and no social side) AND anyway, they weren't the sort of people to casually break the law in a very serious way (like most people).

Secondly, you're confusing two different sorts of "crime" here. There's the sort of crime where somebody snaps, goes mad, and then goes on a violent rampage with whatever comes to hand, and there's the kind of crime committed by habitual criminals and planned "sanely" beforehand. The ban on handguns would be an effective way of preventing mass shootings, and lessen the impact of a violent attack (forcing the perpetrator to use another, less effecient weapon), which is the first type of crime I describe. There isn't really anything you can do to prevent the second type of crime - a resourceful individual, hell-bent on committing a mass-shooting, will always find a (illegal) means to do so.

Thirdly, it would be dishonest of me to pretend that some gun massacres using legally held weapons aren't planned in advance, which undermines my point above a bit. However, IMHO when there are already guns legally present in the equation then they are far more likely to form part of the solution. Thomas Hamilton, for example, was a sad, powerless loner who clearly planned his assault on the primary school in Dunblane. His interest in guns had turned into an infatuation with the weapons he had. Would the infatuation have built up if he hadn't had guns? Maybe not. Would he have planned a gun assault on a primary school if he hadn't had guns in the first place? We'll never know, but we do know that it was no effort for him to factor guns into his plans and no effort for him to acquire them on the day of the massacre, as he already had them. Was there a way that anyone could have detected that Hamilton only wanted to own guns because they made him feel empowered, rather than the pathetic and ignored man he was? Not really, and that's the problem - it's not easy to determine the genuine motives for gun ownership. Would the perpetrators of the Columbine attacks have planned a gun assault on the school if there had been no obvious, easy way for them to get hold of guns? Would they have been as successful if they'd had to get guns from an illegal source? It seems less likely, doesn't it? It at least puts several additional barriers between them and the weapons they used, which has got to be a good thing.

I totally take your (well made) point, in that I seem to be arguing that gun owners are too law abiding to obtain guns illegally, but that they might be prepared to murder, which is similarly illegal. This seems like an inherent contradiction, but I'm not sure that it is. My point is that any responsible, law-abiding person has the potential for sudden, serious mental breakdown which can lead to spontaneous acts of violence (often when this happens, they are found not guilty due to temporary insanity). If this happens to someone with a gun, the consequences are often far, far worse than if they didn't have one.

Furthermore, I would suggest that when a gun is present "up front", then it forms a realistic and easy part of the planning process if someone is experiencing more gradual mental deterioration, or just plain criminal intention. IMHO the presence of a gun (yes, an aninanimate object) can and will guide the thought process and planning of somebody who owns it. Not everyday, of course, but in the case of mental breakdown and a feeling of being unempowered, the gun provides an easy and obvious way to empower yourself and take control of somebody else's life - it's a far more effective tool for doing so than anything else. It's there as a potential resource during any planning, and it's there to be used at the point of execution.

Now....to use one of your arguments against you (I hope). I claimed that removing guns meant that murders would have been prevented. I can conceded your point that in fact, at least some of these murders that would have been committed with a gun were committed anyway, using another weapon. However, if you're going to claim that these murderers would have been murderers either with or without a gun, wouldn't you rather that they DIDN'T have a gun in the first place? I'm being facetious, but do you WANT murderers to be armed with guns?

The thing is, give me the choice between someone attacking me with a gun and someone attacking me with virtually any other accessible object and I'll take the gun every time. This was demonstrated a few years back in Wolverhampton, where someone attacked a playground full of kids and their teacher with a machete - none of them died despite a frenzied attack and some horrible wounds. The same cannot be said for Dunblane, where 13 (IIRC) people died in similar circumstances, and where the key difference was that Hamilton had a gun.

Woo....that was a long one, wasn't it?

P.
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DoNotRefill Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-03-03 09:17 PM
Response to Reply #30
35. yup, that was a long one.
Here's the thing. Most mass-murders ARE planned out to some extent. While the plans are generally a far ways from rational, they do plan them, and obtain what they need to carry out the attacks. This varies from things like obtaining needed items (particularly guns, extra magazines and ammunition) to carefully plotting in their own minds what they are going to do. As proof of this, I'd offer the Columbine massacre as an example. The rampage there was the result of long-term planning to obtain the weapons and ammunition illegally, modifying them, along with making the bombs that they used, both of the pipe-bomb and LP-tank variety. Even with the most poorly planned attacks, there is SOME preparation found, if just to load the necessary magazines.

I shoot recreationally. This is traditionally not a very demanding kind of thing. Yet for a sucessful trip to the range, I find that it takes me two days on average to get ready (true, it's only a little while per day, but still). I have to clean, inspect and repair the weapons, locate and assemble the appropriate gear (ammuntion, targets, ear and eye protection, and other necessitites) and load up. I can't imagine that ANY person planning on going on a rampage would have to do less.

Removing legal guns from the equation may offer SOME benefits, especially for things like suicides. Of course, a suicidal person who finds themselves without a gun will not stop trying to commit suicide, they'll use other means.

"However, if you're going to claim that these murderers would have been murderers either with or without a gun, wouldn't you rather that they DIDN'T have a gun in the first place? I'm being facetious, but do you WANT murderers to be armed with guns?"

To me, it makes no difference. I wish that people wouldn't commit murders. If they ARE going to commit a homicide, it doesn't matter in the slightest to me what method they choose. Either way, the victim is still dead, the fallout is the same, and the act is still just as bad.

"The thing is, give me the choice between someone attacking me with a gun and someone attacking me with virtually any other accessible object and I'll take the gun every time."

I don't know...I'd personally rather be cleanly shot than have sulfuric acid thrown in my face. Before you say "sulfuric acid isn't commonly available!", it is. It's used to clean masonry, and is available at almost any construction supply store. Another example is a molotov cocktail. They are easily obtainable practically anywhere, and the wound effects are horrific. Then, of course, you have the case of the NJ subway worker who was in a bulletproof cage, and was killed when somebody shot lighter fluid inside and lit it. He was safe from bullets, but died from wounds received from a $1.49 bottle of naptha that's available at any drug store. I'm sure machetes aren't common household items in England, but obviously you can find them.

We get back to the central truism. Where somebody is hell-bent on hurting somebody, they'll do it. It doesn't even take much planning or a gun, either.
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Pert_UK Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-03-03 10:04 PM
Response to Reply #35
36. As the photographer said to Mr Schwartzenegger.....
:-)

"Most mass-murders ARE planned out to some extent" - OK, I'll go with that for the sake of argument. Now - would it be easier or more difficult to commit that mass murder if you didn't have a gun? I reckon it would be more difficult - you'd either have to get a gun from somewhere illegally (involving considerable effort and giving more opportunities for your detection) or come up with some other kind of weaponry.

Now....if you come up with ANY other kind of weaponry, then I reckon I'm ahead of you - if you use acid or petrol bombs (molotovs) then you get one attempt at a time and if I run away then I stand a decent chance of escape. How much of that stuff can you carry anyway? How much time between attacks do I have before you're ready to go again? How many people would Michael Ryan (Hungerford) if he hadn't been armed with multi-shot firearms?

Even if you source a gun illegally, you have still had to take one more step before you are able to commit your crime, and you have already broken a law - if you're found trying to procure an illegal gun, you're arrested and probably jailed (in the UK). You have already broken a law.

We're both making some assumptins here - you seem to be assuming that a murder or suicide will happen regardless, whereas I'm assuming that SOME murders & suicides (especially impulsive ones) will be prevented if the simplest and most effective (arguably) means of committing the act is removed from the equation.

There's also the idea of causation - I'm not saying that guns cause people to murder, but what I am saying is that some people are powerless and ignored by society. Some become "unbalanced" and detached from reality. If they have a gun and, as they perceive it, the means to assert themselves on society and make an impact, the temptation to do so can grow until it's overwhelming. If they don't have a gun, either they flip out with a knife (easier to defend against) or they just continue in their own way, being the detached loner who everyone ignores. In the same way that a slice of pizza in the fridge calls out "Eat me!" to the dieter in the next room, a gun calls out "Use me!" to the unempowered nutcase.

I'm on dodgy ground here, I realise, and will emphasise it by quoting Barney from The Simpsons, "These fumes aren't as good as beer. Sure, I'm all dizzy and nauseous, but where's my inflated sense of self-esteem? (Reaches down and finds gun)...Aarrghh..THERE'S my inflated sense of self-esteem!".

Anyway, my key point is that if someone flips out (and many of us lose control occasionally) and they have got a gun, the odds of someone dying are far higher if they've got a gun, than if they haven't.

BTW - you paint a delightful picture. "I'd rather be cleanly shot...". Yes please, if you're going to attack me, make sure I'm dead instantly and don't know anything about it, rather than given a chance to defend myself and get injured, rather than killed.
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iverglas Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-03-03 08:46 AM
Response to Reply #14
28. tsk tsk
"Those who would trade freedom for security will receive neither."

Those who like to quote authorities in the service of their argument would do well to get it straight.

This seems to be the most authoritative version of the quotation in question:


They that can give up essential liberty to obtain a little
temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety."

-Benjamin Franklin, 1759.


He just wasn't saying quite the same thing as those fond of misquoting him, or even quoting him, would apparently like him to have said.

There are ALWAYS trade-offs to be made, in a society, between individual liberty and collective security; that's what most penal laws, for example, are all about. (Trade-offs are also made between collective liberty and individual security; that's what most constitutional limitations on "majority rule" to protect minority rights are all about.) The question is never WHETHER they should be made, but WHEN they should be made.

That was the issue that Franklin was actually addressing. His famous words do little to help us decide when that "when" is, even if we completely agree with him. What liberty is "essential"? What safety is "little" and "temporary"?

Them's the big quetions, eh?

It's as true that "Those who would trade security for freedom will receive neither" as that "Those who would trade freedom for security will receive neither". And one could equally well say about security what Franklin said about liberty:

They that can give up essential safety to obtain a little
temporary liberty deserve neither safety nor liberty."

-iverglas, 2003.


One can deny others liberty in the pursuit of one's own security, or deny others security in the pursuit of one's own liberty. Both are contrary to the fundamental societal bargain in which we all forego a reasonable amount of our own ability to pursue our own interests, so that our fellow citizens (in the broad sense) are reasonably able to pursue their own. And both are expressions of short-sighted, unenlightened self-interest.

Striking the best balance is what society and its laws and constitutions are all about.

.
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Pert_UK Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-03-03 08:18 PM
Response to Reply #28
32. Bloody hell's teeth! Spot on!
Thank you for your help - Spentastic was right about you!

:hi:

Keep on bringing out those good arguments!

P.
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Township75 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Sep-02-03 09:20 PM
Response to Original message
19. Pert, here is a quick reply...
I intend to review your post and link more discretely some other time...I just ran a while, and got stuff to do and am tired.

This is what hit me from my first scan through your post:

1. You suggest that people shouldn't use the UK example as an arguement against US gun control measures, because the UK laws were not intended to target criminals, rather just prevent massacres by common citizens snapping (for lack of a better word)...at least this is how I interpreted your post.

I don't think it invalidates the pro gunners arguement that the UK is an example of how gun control will NOT work in the US.

The reason is that many anti gunners want to ban all handguns, and some even all guns. For example, the leader of the Violence Policy Institute, Josh Sugarmann, wrote Every Handgun Is Aimed At You: The Case for Banning Handguns. You can find it at Amazon. I read it, and he basically supports the UK laws, excluding banning long guns.

Now, if the UK implemented banning handguns (and long guns), and didn't see a decrease, but rather an increase in gun murders, and the US anti gunners want to do the same, why shouldn't pro gunners be able to use the UK example?

It appears to me that you made a good arguement in that the intent of the UK gun control laws is different than the intent of the proposed US gun control laws, not that the laws are different.

Also, I would like to know how you justify a roughly 10% increase in gun murders as statistically insignificant. What kind of t-test or other stat test did you use? If it is in the link, I will get it tomorrow (I hope).

Hope to pick up the conversation tomorrow.
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Pert_UK Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Sep-02-03 09:50 PM
Response to Reply #19
21. Excellent response. Thanks.
"I don't think it invalidates the pro gunners arguement that the UK is an example of how gun control will NOT work in the US." - kind of agree, kind of disagree.

Pro gunners often seem to make the following argument.

1. The UK implemented gun control.
2. UK gun control isn't working.
3. Therefore, gun control in the US won't work.

There are several misunderstandings here. Firstly, the pro gunners seem to assume that there is only one type of gun control. This is blatantly untrue. A total ban is vastly different from a change in the laws around ownership.

Secondly, pro gunners claim that a rise in UK gun crime proves that the UK's gun control methods don't work. This is only partly true - clearly the UK needs to better address the use of firearms by criminals, but it's totally erroneous to attack the laws which prevent legal gun ownership based on the increased use of firearms by criminals. You might as well say "Speeding on UK roads has increased since the gun ban, therefore the gun ban didn't work". The two aspects of gun use / possession / crime are only vaguely related. A more violent society which has seen an increase in gang activity and a casualisation of gun use amongst criminals will inevitably have to face an increase in gun crime. We'll never know how many MORE crimes would have been committed by legal gun owners, but the odds suggest that there would have been at least a few more deaths by gunfire if firearms were still in public hands.

Re: laws, they are different. A specific law was brought in to prevent the legal ownership of firearms. We already have lots of laws about armed robbery, assault and murder, and it's those laws that should be analysed and criticised in relation to the increase in gun deaths.

"a roughly 10% increase in gun murders as statistically insignificant." - that was from a quote, not me. I think that the point was that gun crime has increased, but it hasn't increased significantly more than overall violent crime.

I appreciate that many anti gunners want to ban all handguns (although I doubt that it will ever happen in the US). Therefore it is totally relevant to look at the UK situation and laws, but you've got to be careful.

1. the UK has no history of guns being used in self-defense, neither is there any perception that there is widespread use of guns in "casual" crimes that would necessitate the use of guns in self-defense. There was also no huge base of sporting gun users.

2. if you look at the intention of the UK handgun ban, it can only lend weight to the anti-gunner's case - there have been NO deaths or injuries due to legally held handguns since the ban was introduced. In theory, that's a strong case for introducing it in the US.

3. however, the situation is totally different in the US, where FAR MORE guns are in circulation and where handguns are legitimately used in self defense. A total ban would work in theory, but never in practice in the US, and I DON'T advocate one. There are too many factors in US society that don't apply in the UK, and anti gunners who suggest a total ban are going to be disappointed because it wouldn't work.

4. that doesn't mean that there isn't a problem and that something doesn't need to be done to reduce the number of accidents and incidents using legally held guns in the US. That's all I'm saying. I'm not trying to take away anyone's guns....
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MrBenchley Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-03-03 08:52 AM
Response to Original message
29. Nice try...
But bear in mind you're talking to people trying desperately to pretend that blind people ought to be sold guns, that Ted Nugent is not a racist, and that "militia" and "people" are not collective terms.
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Pert_UK Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-03-03 08:16 PM
Response to Reply #29
31. You have the right to bear arms or the right to arm bears.......
whatever you want to do.....

Hoorah for Robin Williams.

Yeah, thanks, I know, I just like a good argument......and the occasional bad one too.

If you've not checked out http://www.gun-control-network.org there are a few things on there about the UK and worldwide which are worth looking at.

Personally, as previously mentioned, I have no problem with gun ownership IN THEORY. If everyone followed all the rules then gun ownership would probably only cause a negligible number of deaths and injuries each year....it's the gun ownership in practise that causes problems - people just cannot be trusted as far as I can tell from the evidence.

P
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MrBenchley Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-04-03 07:55 AM
Response to Reply #31
37. That is an excellent site....
"Personally, as previously mentioned, I have no problem with gun ownership IN THEORY."
Nor do I....but the plain fact is I've never known anyone who really WANTED desperately to have a gun who wasn't either a lowlife or an idiot.

And I've long been disgusted with the blatant dishonesty and corruption of the so-called "RKBA" movement.
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demsrule4life Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-03-03 08:28 PM
Response to Reply #29
33. Just wondering does the word "people"
in the other amendments in the bill of rights are a collective or individual right?
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demsrule4life Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-03-03 08:48 PM
Response to Reply #33
34. Our founding fathers believed they were an individual right
During the debates on the adoption of the Constitution, its opponents repeatedly charged that the Constitution as drafted would open the way to tyranny by the central government. Fresh in their minds was the memory of the British violation of civil rights before and during the Revolution. They demanded a "bill of rights" that would spell out the immunities of individual citizens.
http://www.archives.gov/exhibit_hall/charters_of_freedo...
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MrBenchley Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-04-03 08:03 AM
Response to Reply #34
39. Yeah, ri-i-i-i-i-i-i-i-i-i-ght......
Federalist paper #29....

"THE power of regulating the militia, and of commanding its services in times of insurrection and invasion are natural incidents to the duties of superintending the common defense, and of watching over the internal peace of the Confederacy.
It requires no skill in the science of war to discern that uniformity in the organization and discipline of the militia would be attended with the most beneficial effects, whenever they were called into service for the public defense. If a well-regulated militia be the most natural defense of a free country, it ought certainly to be under the regulation and at the disposal of that body which is constituted the guardian of the national security. .
To oblige the great body of the yeomanry, and of the other classes of the citizens, to be under arms for the purpose of going through military exercises and evolutions, as often as might be necessary to acquire the degree of perfection which would entitle them to the character of a well-regulated militia, would be a real grievance to the people, and a serious public inconvenience and loss. It would form an annual deduction from the productive labor of the country, to an amount which, calculating upon the present numbers of the people, would not fall far short of the whole expense of the civil establishments of all the States."

http://federalistpapers.com/federalist29.html
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BullDozer Donating Member (754 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-04-03 08:31 AM
Response to Reply #39
42. and the rest of the quote ......
You were given the full quote on 9/02 you should use it instead of editing off the part which would contradict your claim.

"To attempt a thing which would abridge the mass of labor and industry to so considerable an extent, would be unwise: and the experiment, if made, could not succeed, because it would not long be endured. Little more can reasonably be aimed at, with respect to the people at large, than to have them properly armed and equipped; and in order to see that this be not neglected, it will be necessary to assemble them once or twice in the course of a year.
"
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MrBenchley Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-04-03 08:33 AM
Response to Reply #42
43. Dozer, go peddle your pantload somewhere else
"with respect to the people at large, than to have them properly armed and equipped"
Collective all the way...nothing about that phrase that ISN'T.
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BullDozer Donating Member (754 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-04-03 08:41 AM
Response to Reply #43
44. Yeah righttttttttttt
You can't even make your case for that in any of the ongoing threads about individual vs collective so you run over here to hide about it?

"with respect to the people at large, than to have them properly armed and equipped; and in order to see that this be not neglected, it will be necessary to assemble them once or twice in the course of a year."

Bull, so somehow they were supposed to show up for drill/inspection to prove that they had not neglected their equipment with nothing in their hands to have neglected?

This is clearly a statement that they were to show up as required with their personal arms and equipment.


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MrBenchley Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-04-03 08:53 AM
Response to Reply #44
45. Dozer, who are you trying to kid...
"with respect to the people at large, than to have them properly armed and equipped; and in order to see that this be not neglected, it will be necessary to assemble them once or twice in the course of a year."

And you're trying to tell us this is not collective.

And by the way, from the earliest days, those armaments were kept in state armorys.

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BullDozer Donating Member (754 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-04-03 06:25 PM
Response to Reply #45
46. When will you get it?
"And you're trying to tell us this is not collective.

And by the way, from the earliest days, those armaments were kept in state armorys
"

Your claim flys in the face of the fact that the Militia Act of 1792 states that "every citizen, so enrolled and notified, shall, within six months thereafter, provide himself with a good musket or firelock.....and shall appear so armed, accoutred and provided, when called out to exercise or into service..."

They were required to supply their own weapon and equipment and bring it with them when ordered to appear. (english lesson for you the above clause "and provided" refers back to "provide himself")

In the act the phrase "every citizen so enrolled" is defined as

"... That each and every free able-bodied white male citizen of the respective States, resident therein, who is or shall be of age of eighteen years, and under the age of forty-five years (except as is herein after excepted) shall severally and respectively be enrolled in the militia..."

http://www.constitution.org/mil/mil_act_1792.htm

They brought their own weapons individually and did not draw them from any armory.


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MrBenchley Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Sep-05-03 07:59 AM
Response to Reply #46
47. I'm not dumb or corrupt enough to catch that hooey
Now go peddle your revisionist history to someone dumb enough to fall for it..
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BullDozer Donating Member (754 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Sep-06-03 11:38 AM
Response to Reply #47
48. You're not something that's for sure
You're claiming that http://www.constitution.org/mil/mil_act_1792.htm
is revisionist history then?

How about you provide some facts to back that up?
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MrBenchley Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Sep-06-03 06:32 PM
Response to Reply #48
49. Go peddle your NRA hooey
to somebody who's dumb enough to think "well regulated" and "unorganized" mean the exact same thing.
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BullDozer Donating Member (754 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Sep-06-03 06:59 PM
Response to Reply #49
50. Do you bother to read?
Edited on Sat Sep-06-03 07:01 PM by BullDozer
http://www.constitution.org/mil/mil_act_1792.htm

Looks like regulation to me if that's the argument you are trying to make but are failing to elaborate upon. It's an argument that even the bradybunch aren't dishonest enough to try and make.

Now which way do you want to spin off into?
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MrBenchley Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Sep-07-03 07:54 AM
Response to Reply #50
51. I do read
Now go peddle your NRA propaganda to someone dumb enough to buy it.
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BullDozer Donating Member (754 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Sep-07-03 12:25 PM
Response to Reply #51
52. Try comprehension then
Edited on Sun Sep-07-03 12:26 PM by BullDozer
Wow first http://www.constitution.org/mil/mil_act_1792.htm is revisionist history and now it's NRA propaganda?

That's some " interesting" spin you have there. :puke:
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MrBenchley Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Sep-07-03 12:33 PM
Response to Reply #52
53. Peddle it to someone
dumb enough to believe "unorganzied" and "well regulated" are synonymous...if you can dredge one up.
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BullDozer Donating Member (754 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Sep-07-03 12:37 PM
Response to Reply #53
54. Make your case then
http://www.constitution.org/mil/mil_act_1792.htm

Looks like regulation to me if that's the argument you are trying to make but are failing to elaborate upon. It's an argument that even the bradybunch aren't dishonest enough to try and make.

Now which way do you want to spin off into?
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MrBenchley Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Sep-07-03 12:52 PM
Response to Reply #54
55. Been there, done that
Edited on Sun Sep-07-03 12:55 PM by MrBenchley
Now see if you can find somebody dumb enough to think "well regulated" and "unorganized" mean the exact same thing.
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BullDozer Donating Member (754 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Sep-07-03 01:00 PM
Response to Reply #55
56. Wrong bucko
Been there, done that

Bullshit, that's pure bullshit.

We've all seen that when you claim to have Been there, done that you in fact haven't proven anything as is cleary evidenced in the other thread.
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MrBenchley Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Sep-07-03 01:22 PM
Response to Reply #56
57. No, what we've all seen
is that somebody wants to pretend "unorganized" and "well regulated" are synonymous...
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MrBenchley Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-04-03 07:56 AM
Response to Reply #33
38. Why don't you go off
and be a "people" all by your lonesome, chingachgook?

By the way, the NRA is suing to overturn campaign finance reform under the first amendment using the ruse that its COLLECTIVE freedom of speech is violated if it can't give its blood money to the GOP.
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demsrule4life Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-04-03 08:21 AM
Response to Reply #38
40. Define chingachgook?
Or are you mearly showing your bigotry towards oriental people?
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MrBenchley Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-04-03 08:28 AM
Response to Reply #40
41. Helloooo? James Fenimore Cooper?
Ring even a faint little bell?
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