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DU Home » Latest Threads » Forums & Groups » Main » Latest Breaking News (Forum) » Breaking: 2 Killed, 1 Inj... » Reply #104

Response to TheCowsCameHome (Reply #48)

Tue Dec 11, 2012, 11:46 PM

104. To you I would qualify as a "gun nut." ...

I am well aware of the "harm" my "toys" are capable of causing. I lost a close family member because of the misuse of a firearm. The incident was ruled a suicide but was most likely to have been an accident caused by mixing alcohol with handling a loaded gun.

I support improving our existing firearm laws to make it far more difficult for those who have a violent criminal background or suffer from severe mental illness to obtain firearms. I also favor very strict enforcement and punishment for anyone caught illegally owning or carrying a firearm. However I do not support banning firearms or confiscating them. Over 80,000,000 people own over 300,000,000 firearms in our nation and the overwhelming majority handle them responsibly.

It is an unfortunate fact that firearms do cause tragedy but what is frequently ignored is that they can save lives when used for legitimate self defense. Obviously when you have as many people owning such a large quantity of any dangerous item you will have incidents that demonstrate just how harmful they can be. It is impossible to reduce such incidents to zero without finding a way to confiscate ALL firearms in our nation. The reality is that in a nation like ours with a very strong gun culture it is politically impossible to eliminate all civilian firearm ownership.

A high percentage of gun violence is due to gang warfare over turf and often this involves the activity of people who are involved in the trade of drugs. Our War on Drugs has been and will continue to be a total failure. We also have a health care system that all too often fails to treat those with mental illness effectively or is far too expensive for those who are suffering to afford.

Usually those who run amok and go on a shooting spree have waved numerous red flags in their past that should have alerted others. Even when detected the current system does require that the individual is reported to the NICS background check system. Often even the fact that a person who has been legally adjudged as having a serious mental issue is not reported to the NICS background check database and can still buy a firearm in a gun store as many states fail to report this data or are behind in reporting.

Also a violent criminal or someone suffering from serious mental problems can also buy a firearm from a private individual without a background check is also a significant problem. No means exists for me to obtain a background check on a person who wishes to buy one of my weapons. The best that I can do is to require that a buyer is a person that anyone who I sell a firearm to is an individual personally know and who has a valid concealed weapons permit. Consequently I rarely sell one of my firearms.

I also feel that anyone who buys a firearm or ammunition should have a card that shows that he has had firearm safety training. I would like to see firearm safety courses being a requirement for all high school students as well as first aid training. To me this only makes commonsense but many would argue that such training might interest students in the shooting sports.

I feel that if both sides of the gun control issue would simply sit down at a table, some valuable compromises could be worked out without requiring draconian changes. Unfortunately those who favor strong gun control all too frequently believe in an incremental approach with the final goal of eventually imposing laws similar to those in Great Britain. For example they favor another assault weapons ban followed by a ban on all semi-auto weapons and then a ban on all handguns. Since the pro gun side is well aware of this they oppose any ideas proposed by the gun control side.

I have a significant amount of money and time invested in my hobby and I enjoy the shooting sports. I realize that the misuse of firearms threatens my investment and I also hate the tragedy that the misuse of firearms causes. I personally believe that the majority of responsible gun owners agree with me.

You may never understand how a person could wish to own a dangerous weapon such as a firearm or to find shooting one enjoyable. If so, I doubt if anything I can say would change your opinion. I realize that many people hate firearms for good reason because of the pain that the misuse of these weapons has caused in their life. Of course I may be misinterpreting your post and you may be far more reasonable than I have assumed.

Since i have proposed some ideas on how our nation can reduced firearm violence perhaps you will take the time to reply with some suggestions on how you would solve the problem.


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