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Newtown -- Who Here Changed His (or Her) Mind?
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Miguel Arboleda
(butuki) - MLife

Locale: Kanto Plain, Japan
Re: Gangs and other thugs on 01/22/2013 15:54:06 MST Print View

I respect your views and opinions, but why is it if someone has a differing opinion than you they are stupid or off their rocker. We are all entitled to our own views and opinions. I surely don't have all the answers and neither do you. Why do you get so frustrated because someone has a different views?

(still haven't replied to the other questions asked, so I'll keep this brief, too)

Brad, I didn't say people giving other opinions were off their rocker. Look at my words again. I specifically wrote "including both sides of the debate". That includes your opinions, Brad, and my own opinions. Speaking within the debate itself, when the debate is shared the way people have been sharing it like this in this thread, is healthy. I respect your opinions, too, and listen to them and respond calmly and with as much thoughtfulness as I can put into it. But that doesn't do anything about the actual subject and purpose of the debate. What I was saying was that the inability to get anything done at all about important, and often tragic, social problems is what makes the whole society seem off its rocker. There are social problems in the States, like gun control and health care, that really shouldn't be moral problems, and shouldn't elicit such polarized opinions. It's more than just a little absurd. Sometimes I wonder if Americans are so bent on finding ways to fight that they will rationalize anything just to get a rise.

Edited by butuki on 01/22/2013 15:56:51 MST.

Lynn Tramper
(retropump) - F

Locale: The Antipodes of La Coruna
Re: Re: Re: Gangs and other thugs on 01/22/2013 16:04:11 MST Print View

Jerry, though America spends a lot on welfare, healthcare and education, it is not spent efficiently. This is IMHO basically ripping off tax payers. Your point about the government being in bed with Big Pharma is a case and point.

Nick, I agree that only individuals can 'fix' a lot of the problems in most societies, but those individuals need to recognise that, for instance with children, it takes a village to raise a child. So individual responsibility is not always enough. As for the war on drugs and you not understanding peoples desire to alter their mind, I understand this fully. In every animal model of human addiction that I study as part of my job, we find that animals will, given the free choice, choose mind-altering drugs every time. It is not just the human condition, it spans all of the higher animal kingdom. Creating criminals of victimless crimes just doesn't seem productive. I agree it is better for parents, and 'villages' to educate and steer youth away from these drugs (including alcohol and tobacco), but to make prisoners out of people for doing what really comes naturally for many just tears apart families and communities, and creates a large population of 'criminals'. It also creates the culture in which their is a lot of profit for gangs and other thugs to wreak social havoc. Obviously I am not a fan of the war on drugs. I see drug use as just part of a person's individual freedom to screw up their own life, just like obesity and many other poor choices made by adults. However, children are so vulnerable to the choices made by their parents that I DO see a need for some kind of educational intervention, whether it be at community level, school district level, state level, or failing all that, even federal level. Although it is easy to see it as an individual's failing, when you live in a country that has universal healthcare, it also becomes a tax-payer's business. I guess this is one argument against universal healthcare, but really any society, no matter what healthcare system they use, can't afford the majority of their people to be unhealthy.

Green Thumb
(greenthumb)
Re: Re: Accuracy on 01/22/2013 16:33:37 MST Print View

Tom-

It all depends. A 12 gauge can be a great tool for home defense in the case that the individual using it can handle the weapon properly. A shotgun typically has much more recoil than the typical carbine rifle. The AR-15 has almost no recoil. This can be a huge factor in putting more than a single round on target. Personally, i'd take a carbine like the AR-15 for home defense as the rifle round packs way more energy(thus stopping power) than a handgun and is better than a shotgun for firing more than one round. A firearm is a tool, nothing more. Choose the correct tool for the job.

Ben Crocker
(alexdrewreed) - M

Locale: Kentucky
Why do we need them? on 01/22/2013 16:41:33 MST Print View

"Because if someone like Hitler, Stalin, Mussolini, Pol Pot, Lenin, Franco, Amin, Mao, Castro, or Diaz takes over we can get rid of them."

Maybe its just where I live, but its very common for people here to compare Obama to Hitler and sometimes Stalin. They do it in conversations. They make facebook posts about it. They are truly convinced that he is that bad of a person. Are they justified in taking action with their guns to get rid of him? What if 100 people feel that way? 1000? More? Are there any rules for this? Who decides?

That just sounds like treason to me. Its no way to run a civilized country. I don't think its a valid reason for keeping guns unregulated.

Lyan Jordan
(redmonk)

Locale: Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem
Newtown -- Who Here Changed His (or Her) Mind on 01/22/2013 16:46:11 MST Print View

The second has the word regulated in it.

Tom Kirchner
(ouzel) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Northwest/Sierra
Re: Education on 01/22/2013 16:54:31 MST Print View

""Now to the 2nd Amendment. Our forefathers did not trust ANY government. They believed that citizens have the right to overthrow ANY tyrannical government, and the 2nd Amendment would help keep the newly formed government in check, because the armed populace had the right to overthrow it, should it take away any of our individual rights. This is the 2nd Amendmend."

Also, please don't tell me you have never read the following quote by Noah Webster:

"Before a standing army can rule, the people must be disarmed; as they are in almost every kingdom of Europe. The supreme power in America cannot enforce unjust laws by the sword; because the whole body of the people are armed, and constitute a force superior to any band of regular troops that can be, on any pretence, raised in the United States.""

Now fast forward 237 years, to a time when the government has highly sophisticated means of surveillance. If turned inward, these means would very quickly identify any leaders of an incipient rebellion, who would equally shortly disappear in the middle of the night, leaving a disorganized rabble to face a battle hardened, professional army whose members have frequently expressed their contempt and alienation for a soft, decadent civilian population. As a means of keeping the government from oppressing the people, the 2nd Amendment is worthless. Is it any wonder Jefferson felt that the Constitution should be rewritten every generation? Times change, and so should anachronisms like the 2nd Amendment.

Edited for grammar.

Edited by ouzel on 01/22/2013 17:08:08 MST.

Nick Gatel
(ngatel) - MLife

Locale: Southern California
Re: Why do we need them? on 01/22/2013 17:01:00 MST Print View

Ben C,

You forgot the rest of my post....


We wouldn't want to ask the Brits or French to come over here and save our collective butts.

;)

Tom Kirchner
(ouzel) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Northwest/Sierra
Re: Newtown -- Who Here Changed His (or Her) Mind on 01/22/2013 17:06:41 MST Print View

"The second has the word regulated in it."

The gentleman who wrote the article in the link, below, has given considerable thought to precisely that idea.

http://www.dailyfinance.com/2013/01/21/gun-violence-proposal-militias-second-amendment-nra-obama/

Tom Kirchner
(ouzel) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Northwest/Sierra
Re: Re: Why do we need them? on 01/22/2013 17:10:14 MST Print View

"We wouldn't want to ask the Brits or French to come over here and save our collective butts."

Oh, why not. At least then I wouldn't have to feel unpatriotic every time I ordered French fries.

;)

Nick Gatel
(ngatel) - MLife

Locale: Southern California
Re: Re: Education on 01/22/2013 17:15:47 MST Print View

"Now fast forward 237 years, to a time when the government has highly sophisticated means of surveillance which. If turned inward, these means would very quickly identify any leaders of an incipient rebellion, who would equally shortly disappear in the middle of the night, leaving a disorganized rabble to face a battle hardened, professional army whose members have frequently expressed their contempt and alienation for a soft, decadent civilian population."

Tom,

I think it is important why we have the 2nd amendment. As to the practicality of a revolt, that is debatable. But we have around 3 million active and reserve military personnel versus 140 million men and women who are between the ages of 17-62. Libya and Syria had a well armed military (compared to the general population). So I wouldn't assume it would be a simple blood-bath.

Of course, I hope it never happens. Disagreements should be resolved by reason, not violence.

Once we take away the 2nd, it becomes easier to take away the rest of the rights. Where do we stop?

Again... I don't own any weapons -- well I do have a Classic Swiss Army Knife :)

Green Thumb
(greenthumb)
Re: Why do we need them? on 01/22/2013 17:25:53 MST Print View

Ben,

I'm curious, have you honestly considered a threshold for revolution? What actions taken by government would merit an insurrection?I hear too many opinions and comments that seem to indicate overthrow of government is not acceptable. At what point does supporting an overreaching government become a treasonous act? One man's terrorist is another man's freedom fighter...

Nick Gatel
(ngatel) - MLife

Locale: Southern California
Re: Re: Re: Why do we need them? on 01/22/2013 17:28:55 MST Print View

Tom,

Have you ever eaten French Fries with a Frenchman or a Brit? They dip them in mustard or mayonnaise. Totally unpatriotic in my opinion.

Luke Schmidt
(Cameron) - MLife

Locale: The WOODS
Re Re Re Why would we need them on 01/22/2013 17:32:19 MST Print View

My understanding is "regulated" means well trained and organized. I don't believe the Federal Government exercised any regulatory authority over the local militias back then.

I think the founders saw that people who are responsible for their own safety and welfare would be less likely to surrender their rights to the government. Remember in the Dark Ages serfs surrendered their rights to the nobility in exchange for security.

Since 9/11 we've put up with government activities that would have been unthinkable before. What if we just put a tazer under every seat of the plane and made that part of the pre flight briefing... "In the event of a hijacking pull the tazer from under your seat and taze the nearest hijacker."

Lynn Tramper
(retropump) - F

Locale: The Antipodes of La Coruna
Re: Re: Why do we need them? on 01/22/2013 17:33:28 MST Print View

I think there is a clear difference between a 'terrorist' and someone who commits treason. A terrorist wantonly kills innocent civilians versus treason which is plotting against a government. I would hope that a true terrorist/terrorists would be dealt with swiftly by a 'well regulated militia', be it civilian or otherwise. Treason to me is less clear cut. If enough Americans decided to act together to over-throw the government, it is not clear where the line between treason and democratically supported rebellion should be drawn. America should, first and foremost, be a democracy. How would disgruntled Americans go about deciding that the majority of of civilians supported a rebellion? If a majority of Americans could be mobilised like this, then surely a democratic election would accomplish the same thing...or am I missing something obvious?

Tom Kirchner
(ouzel) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Northwest/Sierra
Re: Re: Re: Education on 01/22/2013 17:34:34 MST Print View

"I think it is important why we have the 2nd amendment. As to the practicality of a revolt, that is debatable. But we have around 3 million active and reserve military personnel versus 140 million men and women who are between the ages of 17-62. Libya and Syria had a well armed military (compared to the general population). So I wouldn't assume it would be a simple blood-bath."

Debatable, to be sure, but while it might not be simple, I have little doubt as to the outcome. Bloody and futile, IMO, if it were simply a mass uprising a la the Revolutionary War, as apparently envisioned by most of the pro 2nd Amendment folks. A much better bet, IMO again, would be the National Guard units of the different states. They are also battle hardened, well trained, equipped, and organized, and well led in most cases. It would also be more difficult to completely eliminate their command structures if their governors alerted them, and called them up to oppose the Feds. Actually, the National Guard is my own personal interpretation of what the Founding Fathers probably envisioned when they wrote the 2nd Amendment. Why else would they have used the words "well regulated militia", AND made them the heart of the first clause in that amendment?

For the record, neither do I own any weapon more formidable than a kitchen knife. But I have to admit it's a WMD compared to my beloved Swiss Army Classic. ;0)

Ben Crocker
(alexdrewreed) - M

Locale: Kentucky
Brits and Frenchies on 01/22/2013 17:37:15 MST Print View

They owe us. We saved their butts in WWII. Then again, the Feenchies save our butts in the American Revolution. So I guess we're even with them. I'm counting on the Brits.
I didn't respond to that part, Nick, because that was the only part that made any sense :)

Edited by alexdrewreed on 01/22/2013 17:45:19 MST.

Tom Kirchner
(ouzel) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Northwest/Sierra
Re: Re: Re: Education on 01/22/2013 17:41:07 MST Print View

"Of course, I hope it never happens. Disagreements should be resolved by reason, not violence."

+100 Violence is self perpetuating. Just look at The Middle East. Santayana once wrote that those who cannot remember history are doomed to repeat it. I think he only got it half right. Those who cannot forget history are also doomed to repeat it. What is a reasonable person to do? :(

"Once we take away the 2nd, it becomes easier to take away the rest of the rights. Where do we stop?"

All of them have been curtailed to some extent as a result of the war on drugs and 9/11, but I haven't seen any evidence to date that the 2nd Amendment has been of any use in arresting that process. Oh yes, people howl and gnash their teeth. AND buy more guns, but to no effect. The erosion continues, executive order by executive order, and law by law. Simply look at the FISA courts, the right of the military to hold US CITIZENS indefinitely without a trial, simply because the state has "evidence", secret of course, that they might be a terrorist. So much for habeas corpus, the bedrock principle of our legal system. If ever there were a time for all you 2nd Amendment-ers to grab your guns and march on Washington... Not that I am any better, for here I sit.

Edited for content.

Edited by ouzel on 01/22/2013 17:46:55 MST.

Nick Gatel
(ngatel) - MLife

Locale: Southern California
Re: Re: Re: Why do we need them? on 01/22/2013 17:43:40 MST Print View

"then surely a democratic election would accomplish the same thing...or am I missing something obvious?"

Well, technically the US is a Republic not a Democracy. Founding fathers did not like democracies. But I digress...

In the 1930's there was this European country that had a "democratic" post WWI government. Then rights were restricted and the Government adopted an "Enabling Act" in 1933. The rest, as we say, is history.

Ben Crocker
(alexdrewreed) - M

Locale: Kentucky
Euro democeacy on 01/22/2013 17:49:03 MST Print View

If my history is correct, he was actually pretty popular among his own people. I'm not sure they wanted to take up guns against him for the most part, especially early on.

Tom Kirchner
(ouzel) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Northwest/Sierra
Re: Re: Re: Re: Why do we need them? on 01/22/2013 17:53:27 MST Print View

"Have you ever eaten French Fries with a Frenchman"

No, but I in indulged in pommes frites on occasion when I was over there. Mustard ain't bad. Mayonnaise? Now that IS unpatriotic. Or should I say British? ;0)