Gun Control

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Gun Control

Post by Toaster on Thu Dec 20, 2012 7:26 am

I feel the need to bitch about this a bit, so I'm just gonna go ahead and do that, and I'd love to hear what some of you guys have to say on the topic.

Last night, Obama came out and made a big speech about gun violence, citing the Connecticut shooting as the latest of many gun-related atrocities which necessitate some kind of legislative response. He gave a lot of suggestions and referenced a lot of different scenarios. Rather than go through it all in an orderly manner I'd rather just list out different bits and pieces separately, and complain about them that way.

Assault Weapons

What the hell is an 'Assault Weapon', and how does it pertain to mass shootings, or really any criminal gun violence for that matter? Fully automatic weapons are already either illegal or almost impossible to get pretty much anywhere in the United States. Banana clips, or extended ammunition clips, are equally illegal/nearly impossible to get. What, beyond that, constitutes an 'assault weapon'? Obviously, and AK-47 is better for making war than a Glock, but when it comes to shooting unarmed children/students/people at point blank range, there's hardly any difference. Seung-Hui Cho killed 32 people with a pair of semi-automatic pistols.

To be completely honest, it would make a hell of a lot more sense to ban handguns, which are concealable and therefore much more dangerous. Beyond that, a federal 'assault weapons' ban is about as anti-constitutional as it gets. The 2nd amendment says nothing of self-defense against crackheads. It guarantees the right to gun-ownership on the basis that citizens of each state should be capable of fending off agents of the federal government.

constitution wrote:A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.

The bill of rights was originally meant to apply only to the federal government. It was a list of restrictions to the federal government, which state legislators demanded be in place before they would agree to it. If states wish to ban non-militia members from keeping certain weapons, that's perfectly constitutionally sound... but it's not really within the purview of the federal government (not that anyone gives a shit about that).

Criminal Background Checks

I'm fine with not permitting the sale of weapons to violent felons... but that's it. I'm not okay with preventing a person from being capable of self-defense because he got busted for selling weed in high school, or because he got arrested for getting in a drunken fist-fight.

Either way, this would not have prevented any well-known school shootings. They tend to be young males with no criminal records...

mental health checks

This is the one that really frightens me. What constitutes good mental health, and how is it to be measured? Should anyone who's ever seen a counselor be kept from owning a weapon? I've been on anti-anxiety medication at one point or another, and many of my family members have been on some kind of anti-depressant. Would we be considered 'mentally stable' enough to own guns? Would there be some kind of standardized 'mental health' test?

Again, unless gone about in very extreme ways, these measures probably would not have prevented any massacres. At the very least, they would not have prevented this most recent one. The guns belonged to his parents, who bought them legally, and had no history of poor mental health (that I am aware of at least).

"There are xx thousand gun homicides in the US every year"

This is obviously a very big deal, and it needs to be (somehow) addressed... but we really need to stop treating school shootings and gun violence in general as a single issue. They are completely different animals. One might actually be curbed by stricter (while sensible) gun control laws, and the other would likely go on unaffected. As tragic and increasingly frequent as mass shootings may be, they represent a very small fraction of gun murders in the US.

Solutions?
I don't know... but I don't think nationwide bans would solve much of anything, at least without causing more harm than good. I think we ought to realize that states are meant to be free to impose all the gun bans they like, and let them experiment to find solutions of their own. I'm fine with a person being permitted to keep, in their homes, a very small number of firearms. I think, at the very least, the ownership of a handgun with a small clip ought to be legal in every state. People should be allowed to protect themselves, regardless of the likelihood of attack. School shootings are tragic, but I think rendering people, by law, completely defenseless against a violent attack is an even greater injustice. Freak accidents occur. Home invasions happen. They're rare, but so are school shootings. Nevertheless, I think it's an issue for states to handle independently. It's better to screw something up locally than nationally.

Awareness is also important. People with crazy children need to lock their guns away. The Connecticut shooter's mom knew he was mentally unstable, was trying to get him institutionalized... and didn't change the locks? (did they even have the guns in safes to begin with?) In the wake of every school shooting, people cry "Just think about how awful this all must be for the shooters' parents". We ought to be calling them out, shaming them publicly, for not doing something about it (regardless of whether or not they are to blame for their child's insanity to begin with,) ESPECIALLY in the case of this most recent shooting. This kid was deeply disturbed... and he was taken to shooting ranges... and given access to multiple guns.

I also don't think it would be horribly unreasonable to have a policeman stationed at every school. That's more of a band-aid than a real, long-term solution... but it's something. There was a policewoman who worked at my middle school when I lived in Georgia, and all three of my sisters went to high school's with roaming police officers. Their job should not be busting kids for weed or drinking or truancy or anything like that. They should be there for protection/keeping the peace and nothing else.

What really bothers me is that I just know everyone even slightly left leaning is going to be commending Obama for offering 'sensible, moderate, bi-partisan solutions', when all he really did is talk out of his ass, and repeat what unthinking people have been screaming about since the beginning of time. He did not offer a single sensible solution, and he demonstrated, yet again, complete ignorance (or perhaps just disregard) to the constitution (which is curious, given that he is a 'constitutional scholar').

I don't hate Obama... but man... I really don't like him most of the time. I think he is a painfully mediocre president.
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Re: Gun Control

Post by CivBase on Thu Dec 20, 2012 10:17 am

We should definitely work on beefing up school security, but increasing gun control wont fix anything. It will only outrage millions and possibly increase violence and crime rates.

The sad thing is, many people look to the government for a solution in cases like this. There is nothing the government can do. We could tweak gun control any which way, but it won't fix massacres. There are just some crazy people out there. We can't figure out who they are. There often aren't obvious signs. It sucks, but is there really anything we could have done to stop the massacre entirely?

All the same, I wish the best for the families affected and hope this tragedy wont inspire more.

Also, I thought this video was interesting.

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Re: Gun Control

Post by Gauz on Thu Dec 20, 2012 10:40 am

Solutions for this issue are tough to come by. Some people recommend mental health tests, but the thing is with the 'insane' is that they are usually A) Highly intelligent, and B) perfect liars.

Gun control probably won't work either. Criminals will always find a way to get guns, as they always find a way to get drugs too.
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Re: Gun Control

Post by dragoon9105 on Thu Dec 20, 2012 10:46 am



Thats how you stop Massacres, Get to it Japan.
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Re: Gun Control

Post by Elabajaba on Thu Dec 20, 2012 11:20 am

http://www.guardian.co.uk/news/datablog/2012/jul/22/gun-homicides-ownership-world-list

Of stable developed countries, the US has one of the highest rates of gun homicides.

In the recent school knifing in China, none of the attackers victims died and 26 people were injured because he didn't have a gun. In the Newtown shooting, a total of 28 people died (26 people at the school, the killer, and the killer's mom) and 2 people were injured.

I disagree with Obama targeting "Assault weapons" as those are usually semi-automatic and too large to conceal, while a handgun is very easy to conceal and about as deadly at short ranges. Handguns aren't really used for hunting or other recreational activities outside of going to a shooting range.

Basically, if Obama should target anything, I think he should target handguns and mental health.

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Re: Gun Control

Post by Vigil on Thu Dec 20, 2012 11:36 am

Well Elab, I think it's because one of the weapons used in the attack was a AR-15 Bushmaster was one of the weapons used.

But yeah, handguns make more sense. Over Here after a particularly nasty incident where somebody killed people with two pistols, handguns were banned here.

While I'm not going to say that's going to stop gun crime, as we still get it occasionally, for example this year two police officers in Manchester got gunned down responding to a call, but it is rare and very far inbetween incidents.

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Re: Gun Control

Post by Toaster on Thu Dec 20, 2012 4:49 pm

Civ wrote: Also, I thought this video was interesting.

I stopped watching once he got deeper into the talk about video games (that voice of his... I can only stand short bursts), but the beginning points were very well made. The Columbine kids left a message behind that their #1 goal was infamy... and talking endlessly about the shooter, kill counts, etc... definitely fulfills that motivation.

I think, as with many subjects, we give way too much credit to the condition of insanity, and neglect to consider the many intelligible thought processes of those who meet its description. Obviously these guys are all deeply disturbed. Killing 28 young children or 32 classmates requires that certain human qualities be missing... but these guys aren't sitting curled up in corners day and night, shaking back-and-forth and muttering to themselves. They're usually pretty smart, and they're motivated by real-world thought processes (however irrational).

"He was autistic! He had Aspergers!" Almost every shy, intelligent, wiry, socially awkward teenage male could be described as such... and even the rarer minority of which such a diagnosis is accurate... well I think we've all come across/known guys like that in school, and while they're a bit off in the head, they're still all there.

I think one of the most dangerous things about American culture is the tendency (on the part of Americans) to exaggerate the significance of bullshit statistics and 'medical' diagnoses. We like to create 'syndromes', which label those who demonstrate undesirable qualities as victims, and thus suggest that their actions were inevitable symptoms of illness, having nothing to do with other motivations.

Americans have a tendency to forget that human beings are HUMAN, and thus in control of their thoughts and behaviors. F

Gauz wrote:Solutions for this issue are tough to come by. Some people recommend mental health tests, but the thing is with the 'insane' is that they are usually A) Highly intelligent, and B) perfect liars.

Yes.


Last edited by Toaster on Fri Dec 21, 2012 8:14 am; edited 2 times in total
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Re: Gun Control

Post by Rasq'uire'laskar on Thu Dec 20, 2012 5:24 pm

DARNIT, HOW DID I MISS THIS?!

Going to add my two cents later tonight. Until then...
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Re: Gun Control

Post by KrAzY on Thu Dec 20, 2012 5:30 pm

I am for criminal/ mental health checks for purchacing a weapon, but that is it.


in the end mass murders will be committed no matter what, a gas or fire bomb can be made from cheap household chemicals... and they would do MUCH more damage than a gun in most circumstances. and in places where guns are outlawed they are what get used.


people suck and they will suck regardless of what you tell them they can and can't own.




also, side note that all of the politicians and political pundits that immediately jumped on this tragedy to push their political opinions on everybody (on both sides) are scumbags. theres a time for that, and that time isn't THE DAY OF THE TRAGEDY.
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Re: Gun Control

Post by CivBase on Thu Dec 20, 2012 11:16 pm

Elabajaba wrote:Of stable developed countries, the US has one of the highest rates of gun homicides.
Right, but what does that have to do with gun availability? Like Vigil said, getting rid of guns didn't stop gun violence in Britain. Sadly, an irregularly-large portion of US citizens are depraved, attention-starved, pricks who can't name our Vice President or point to Germany on a map but jump at the chance to occupy Wall Street or gripe at a tea party convention. Many are so narrow-minded and self-focused that they rarely consider the extended consequences of their actions on anyone but themselves. This kid obviously had problems and, frankly, I don't suspect mental instability had much to do with it.

Of course, I'm still for legal background checks and mental stability checks for gun licensing and purchase, but within reason. Like Recon said, someone with Ausburgers or who was busted for selling pot a decade ago shouldn't have their guns taken away.

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Re: Gun Control

Post by Kasrkin Seath on Thu Dec 20, 2012 11:17 pm

CivBase wrote:
Elabajaba wrote:Of stable developed countries, the US has one of the highest rates of gun homicides.
Right, but what does that have to do with gun availability? Like Vigil said, getting rid of guns didn't stop gun violence in Britain. Sadly, an irregularly-large portion of US citizens are depraved, attention-starved, pricks who can't name our Vice President or point to Germany on a map but jump at the chance to occupy Wall Street or gripe at a tea party convention. Many are so narrow-minded and self-focused that they rarely consider the extended consequences of their actions on anyone but themselves. This kid obviously had problems and, frankly, I don't suspect mental instability had much to do with it.

Of course, I'm still for legal background checks and mental stability checks for gun licensing and purchase, but within reason. Like Recon said, someone with Ausburgers or who was busted for selling pot a decade ago shouldn't have their guns taken away.

Hey everybody, let's generalize, insult, and accuse large swaths of people because they are different than we are!

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Re: Gun Control

Post by CivBase on Thu Dec 20, 2012 11:24 pm

Kasrkin Seath wrote:Hey everybody, let's generalize, insult, and accuse large swaths of people because they are different than we are!
I didn't generalize anyone. I never accused any particular person or group of being that way. All I said was that the US has more of that than most countries.

But yah. Sure. We can play that game if you want.

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Re: Gun Control

Post by KrAzY on Thu Dec 20, 2012 11:39 pm

most gun related violence in the US is in cities and is committed by Gangs, which, is a very US problem... and I do think that that group can be accurately described as depraved attention seeking individuals.

to stop gun violence we need to stop the gangs... putting them in jail isn't enough since that situation just perpetuates the necessity of being in a gang. there need to be social programs put in place to give kids who would be brought into a gang into a good education.

also the media needs to stop glamorizing gang life
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Re: Gun Control

Post by Ringleader on Fri Dec 21, 2012 12:30 am

CivBase wrote:
Elabajaba wrote:Of stable developed countries, the US has one of the highest rates of gun homicides.
Right, but what does that have to do with gun availability? Like Vigil said, getting rid of guns didn't stop gun violence in Britain. Sadly, an irregularly-large portion of US citizens are depraved, attention-starved, pricks who can't name our Vice President or point to Germany on a map but jump at the chance to occupy Wall Street or gripe at a tea party convention. Many are so narrow-minded and self-focused that they rarely consider the extended consequences of their actions on anyone but themselves. This kid obviously had problems and, frankly, I don't suspect mental instability had much to do with it.

Of course, I'm still for legal background checks and mental stability checks for gun licensing and purchase, but within reason. Like Recon said, someone with Ausburgers or who was busted for selling pot a decade ago shouldn't have their guns taken away.
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Re: Gun Control

Post by Rotaretilbo on Fri Dec 21, 2012 1:46 am

It would also help if prisons were safer and better controlled to prevent the necessity of being in a gang to survive prison and also to prevent people in prison from controlling gangs outside of prison.

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Re: Gun Control

Post by Toaster on Fri Dec 21, 2012 5:57 am

Civ wrote:Sadly, an irregularly-large portion of US citizens are depraved, attention-starved, pricks who can't name our Vice President or point to Germany on a map but jump at the chance to occupy Wall Street or gripe at a tea party convention. Many are so narrow-minded and self-focused that they rarely consider the extended consequences of their actions on anyone but themselves. This kid obviously had problems and, frankly, I don't suspect mental instability had much to do with it.

Agreed. He was fucked up, no doubt, but he WAS in control of his actions, and probably motivated by much more subtle personality flaws.

There's something about our culture... such that this sort of thing has become commonplace. I generally like to shy away from lending too much credit to 'social production', but unstable societies are bound to breed some percentage of fuck-ups.

Dostoyevsky wrote: "Both the author of these Notes and the Notes themselves are, of course, fictional. Nevertheless, such persons as the composer of these Notes not only exist in our society, but indeed must exist, given the circumstances under which our society has generally been formed."

Focusing on improving mental health is the right idea, but it'll be pretty fruitless if we don't start thinking beyond the lines of clinically defined conditions. Stopping these things would require us to change who we are... which I'm not sure is even possible.
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Re: Gun Control

Post by Nocbl2 on Fri Dec 21, 2012 7:55 am

My solution was actually to have mental health checks. Less vague than you left it, Recon; people with paranoid schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, or with history of severe depression and hospitalization would not be able to own a gun. Having psychiatrists on site to test this might also help.
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Re: Gun Control

Post by Toaster on Fri Dec 21, 2012 8:05 am

Nocbl2 wrote:people with paranoid schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, or with history of severe depression and hospitalization would not be able to own a gun. Having psychiatrists on site to test this might also help.

Trouble is, a lot of psychiatrists are pretty quick to make such diagnoses (especially bipolar disorder). They're human, and you can trust that the ones who would find employment in the firearms equivalent of the DMV probably wouldn't rank among the best in the nation. I'm not opposed to the principle, I just don't see how it could be enforced in a way that would be effective AND reasonable. You could prohibit the sale of guns to individuals who've been institutionalized at some point in the past x-number of years, and maybe that would be worth doing, but I think its effect would be pretty small.
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Re: Gun Control

Post by Ascendant Justice on Fri Dec 21, 2012 12:52 pm

You cant ban guns, and taking pychiatric (sp) tests to determine who can own a firearm could help to an extent. However theres no telling when a perfectly normal individual could just "snap" and do something like that, or something similar. All you can do is keep a watchful eye and report anything life threatening or suspicious.
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Re: Gun Control

Post by Rasq'uire'laskar on Fri Dec 21, 2012 2:11 pm

Nocbl2 wrote:My solution was actually to have mental health checks. Less vague than you left it, Recon; people with paranoid schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, or with history of severe depression and hospitalization would not be able to own a gun. Having psychiatrists on site to test this might also help.
We already have that. It's on the books. It's already a law.
If you feel like it's going to help, get the BATF to enforce what's already on the books.

Now for Gun Control.
Ideally, it means using both hands.

After every mass shooting, we get activists and politicians crawling out of the woodwork to ask how many more tragedies must happen before we enact "common sense gun legislation".
Yeah. It's always "Common sense".
They love that term, because it lets them avoid specifics, and who can argue with "Common sense"?

The thing is, the legislation that's "Common sense" has already been passed. Mandatory background checks and wait periods? Done. Restrictions on felons and the mentally ill? Done.

What more is there? They want to ban "Assault weapons". As Recon pointed out, that's a useless term.
An assault rifle is a gun chambered in an intermediate round, accurate to ~300 meters, and capable of selective fire. I can guarantee y'all that none of you have seen a true assault rifle in a private collection. In America, the license for an automatic weapon costs $18,000, plus yearly fees.

An "Assault weapon" is anything that a legislator or a Brady Bunch shill doesn't like the look of.
Look at the (thankfully, now-expired) Federal Assault Weapons Ban. It banned weapons that LOOKED LIKE AN ASSAULT RIFLE.

And then there's the other provisions. If I owned a pistol manufactured after 1994 that had a barrel shroud and accepted a magazine outside of the pistol grip, it was an "Assault weapon." Nevermind the fact that a barrel shroud on a pistol is as useful as a screen door on a submarine. And a pistol that accepts a magazine outside of the grip? Shorter barrel, lower muzzle velocity, not as accurate, harder to reload, and harder to conceal.

When the FAWB expired, pundits everywhere predicted a return to "Wild West shootouts". Hasn't happened.
They predicted the same thing when states started adopting the "Stand Your Ground" laws. Hasn't happened either.

Finally, comparing America with other countries, America has more gun violence. Indisputable.
In other countries, criminals use other weapons. They might not be as deadly, but they usually get the job done.
In America, we have a lower rate of burglaries where the criminals break in while people are home. I'd like to see some other statistics, but I'm pressed for time. This is an interesting read, though.

America will have a higher crime rate than other countries for a while, for a number of reasons that go beyond the availability of guns. Banning guns will just put law abiding citizens at a disadvantage to criminals with guns.
The best way to stop school shootings isn't to ban guns either. It's to stop glorifying them.

And fire the lying politicians who cut school security and don't own up to it when the inevitable occurs.
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Re: Gun Control

Post by CivBase on Fri Dec 21, 2012 10:10 pm

But Rasq, school security is obviously the least important government program and it eats up sooooo much money.

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Re: Gun Control

Post by dragoon9105 on Fri Dec 21, 2012 10:37 pm

Just telling you guys Killbots. Search your feelings you know this to be the correct course of action
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Re: Gun Control

Post by Vigil on Sun Dec 23, 2012 8:02 am

Well, I'm going to step in this again, and clarify a few things, as Civ seemed to distort what I said.

As you know I live in a country with very strict gun control, and we have one of the lowest rates of gun crime in the world. (0.07 recorded intentional homicides committed with a firearm per 100,000 inhabitants in 2009 compared to the United States' 3.0 [over 40 times higher]).

I mentioned that didn't stop some gun crime happening, and yes there is some, but the last 'Massacre' we experienced in this country was the Dunblane School Shooting in 1996 which left 16 children dead. Much like you are now, there was much talk of stricter gun laws and a year later all handguns were banned in this country. (As the attacker used 2 sets of handguns.)

In 2010 we had a manhunt in Cumbria for a man who went on a shooting spree, killing 12 people. The man was a licensed gun holder, so yes the system isn't perfect, but these are the only 2 major incidents like this in over 30 years. The same cannot be said for the US, where you have had such a large volume over the last 20 years, Columbine, Virginia Tech and now Sandy Hook.

Yes, what Rasq said was correct, as criminals do use other weapons in attacks to get the job done, for example here in London there is a significant rate of knife attacks. But it makes no logical sense to me why having criminals who don't have access to weapons that you are less likely to survive from is such a terrible thing. Yes If you really wanted to get a gun, you could probably get one illegally, but even then you run a serious risk of being caught by the authorities and if your that committed, you probably couldn't have been stopped no matter if you licensed the gun or not. At least our way it's a damn sight harder.

And I don't believe this fallacy that is the second amendment. Your constitution was written on the eve of what appeared to be imminent revolution and war against the British and with the grim reality that they needed all the soldiers they could get, they allowed all citizens the right to bear arms. Please tell me why in the 21st Century you still all need guns when your country is in no real threat of invasion by a hostile power or risk of another civil war?

Self defence? So during a burglary you response if to go to your gun cabinet, get ammo and a gun, and shoot them? Why not a baseball bat, or any impromptu weapon? Crime can strike at any time, and you have a flight or fight response when presented with it, do you really have time to get a gun? Besides most burglaries occur when the occupant isn't home, so what are your protecting yourself from by having a gun there?

What about hunting? Yep it's legal here, so long as you have a license, and you are only allowed a single shot bolt action rifle or a shotgun. Both of which require different licenses which the police are informed you have the weapon.

I'd also like to point the following

When applying for a firearm certificate, justification must be provided to the police for each firearm, and they are individually listed on the certificate by type, calibre, and serial number. A shotgun certificate similarly lists type, calibre and serial number, but permits possession of as many shotguns as can be safely accommodated. To gain permission for a new firearm, a "variation" must be sought, for a fee, unless the variation is made at the time of renewal, or unless it constitutes a one-for-one replacement of an existing firearm that will be disposed of. The certificate also sets out, by calibre, the maximum quantities of ammunition someone may buy or possess at any one time, and is used to record ammunition purchases (except where ammunition is bought to use immediately on a range under s11 or s15 of the Firearms Acts).

To obtain a firearm certificate, the police must be convinced that a person has "good reason" to own each firearm, and that they can be trusted with it "without danger to the public safety or to the peace". Under Home Office guidelines, firearms licences are only issued if a person has legitimate sporting, collecting, or work-related reasons for ownership. Since 1968, self-defence has not been considered a valid reason to own a firearm. The current licensing procedure involves: positive verification of identity, two referees of verifiable good character who have known the applicant for at least two years (and who may themselves be interviewed and/or investigated as part of the certification), approval of the application by the applicant's own family doctor, an inspection of the premises and cabinet where firearms will be kept and a face-to-face interview by a Firearms Enquiry Officer (FEO) also known as a Firearms Liaison Officer (FLO). A thorough background check of the applicant is then made by Special Branch on behalf of the firearms licensing department. Only when all these stages have been satisfactorily completed will a license be issued, which must be renewed every 5 years.

Any person who has been sentenced to three years or more in prison is automatically banned for life from obtaining a firearms licence. Similarly, persons applying for licences with recent, serious mental health issues will also be refused a certificate.
Any person holding a Firearm or Shotgun Certificate must comply with strict conditions regarding such things as safe storage. These storage arrangements are checked by the police before a licence is first granted, and on every renewal of the licence. A local police force may impose additional conditions on possession, over and above those set out by law. Failure to comply with any of these conditions can mean forfeiture of the licence and surrender of any firearms to the police, though due to the complicated laws, different forces in the UK interpret the regulations in different ways, and many conditions have been overthrown following legal proceedings against issuing Police forces
.

I see no reason why something similar could be employed if you are so desperate to keep your guns. It goes a little further than your existing laws and it also helps police identify potential problems faster.

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Re: Gun Control

Post by KrAzY on Sun Dec 23, 2012 9:19 am

just to clear up something, the constitution was written 5 years AFTER the revolutionary war, not "on the eve" of it
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Re: Gun Control

Post by Toaster on Sun Dec 23, 2012 9:50 am

Vigil wrote:As you know I live in a country with very strict gun control, and we have one of the lowest rates of gun crime in the world. (0.07 recorded intentional homicides committed with a firearm per 100,000 inhabitants in 2009 compared to the United States' 3.0 [over 40 times higher]).

I don't doubt that moderate gun control efforts would reduce crime, or that very strict efforts would reduce school shootings. If it's nearly impossible to get a gun, fewer people will have them lying around, and fewer kids will be able to get their hands on them and shoot up their schools.

The question for me isn't whether or not it's possible to, by any means, reduce the likelihood of these things happening, but whether it's possible to do so without deterring unreasonably a person's self-defense capabilities.

Vigil wrote:Self defence? So during a burglary you response if to go to your gun cabinet, get ammo and a gun, and shoot them?

I'd hold off on the shooting part, but if someone's in my house, I'd like to have a gun. Some people don't stop at stealing your TV. What about your wife and children?

A gun is a wonderful thing. I'm not particularly strong or at all confident in my ability to physically overwhelm another man (at least the kind who'd have the balls to break into my house). If you have a gun, none of that matters. Guns are fantastic equalizers. If the other guy has a gun, and you have a gun... it doesn't matter how strong he is, or even how good of a shot he is. If you can manage a shot at point-blank range, you're good.

Home invasions of that nature are probably rare, but as I said, so are school shootings. Rarity doesn't justify completely brushing it off. For the government to MANDATE that I be completely defenseless in such a situation is to me pretty awful.

Vigil wrote:And I don't believe this fallacy that is the second amendment. Your constitution was written on the eve of what appeared to be imminent revolution and war against the British and with the grim reality that they needed all the soldiers they could get, they allowed all citizens the right to bear arms. Please tell me why in the 21st Century you still all need guns when your country is in no real threat of invasion by a hostile power or risk of another civil war?

Then you misunderstand the nature of the bill of rights (as do most AMERICANS, thanks to an abundance of bad history teachers). As I mentioned in my first post, the bill of rights was created because the states refused to sign on to the new constitution (the US had already been operating as a sovereign nation under the Articles of Confederation) unless certain limitation to the FEDERAL government were clearly spelled out.

The states were weary of centralized, federal power, and so demanded that the federal government not have the power to limit gun ownership rights. That doesn't mean that individual states have no such power or that it is the Lord Pheonix given right of every person in every state to own an assault rifle... but it does mean that the second amendment isn't any less relevant now than in 1788. It had very little to do with the threat of foreign invasion, and a whole lot to do with paranoia (I think justified) over central government.

You're right to say that it wasn't about self-defense in the event of home invasions, but if you want to limit gun rights, I think you ought to do it at a local (state by state) level, which is perfectly constitutionally sound.

Vigil wrote:What about hunting? Yep it's legal here, so long as you have a license, and you are only allowed a single shot bolt action rifle or a shotgun. Both of which require different licenses which the police are informed you have the weapon.

I don't care if a state wants to legislate that an individual can only posses one, 6-shot, low caliber pistol, and limited rounds.

Vigil wrote:I'd also like to point the following

Just to preface my response to these bits... I'm gonna answer with the assumption that these measures would be proposed at a state level, which is perfectly constitutional. Now I'm just talking about whether or not I personally agree with them.

Vigil wrote:Any person who has been sentenced to three years or more in prison is automatically banned for life from obtaining a firearms licence.

Meh. I'm not horribly opposed to this. A slightly smaller paintbrush would probably be more reasonable, but I wouldn't picket the Governor's office.

Vigil wrote:Similarly, persons applying for licences with recent, serious mental health issues will also be refused a certificate.

Again, that's fine, but it all depends on what constitutes "serious mental health issues". If someone has been institutionalized in recent history, they shouldn't be allowed to own a gun. Someone who goes to counselling or is on a light pharmaceutical regimen should, in most cases, be left alone.

Vigil wrote:Any person holding a Firearm or Shotgun Certificate must comply with strict conditions regarding such things as safe storage. These storage arrangements are checked by the police before a licence is first granted, and on every renewal of the licence.


Perfectly fine with that, although it doesn't address whether or not concealed carry licenses should exist (I think they should for a very limited range of firearms). If you've got one in your car, or around your ankle, it's not in a 20-ton vault.


I may have a tendency to misrepresent my viewpoints when I'm annoyed, (and these arguments usually help me figure out what I think to begin with) so let me just clarify the purpose of my original post. I agree that the issue of gun violence needs to be addressed. I was annoyed by Obama's (now very typical) obsession with so-called 'assault weapons'. Gun crime in general would probably be reduced if the measures you gave (from that article) were put into law (which should be done at the state level). They would do almost nothing to prevent school shootings. I'm not sure how to tackle that issue, which is, again, the great thing about letting states do their own thing. They can experiment with different solutions, and we can all learn from their failures and successes.

Maybe the right solution is to only let people own low-capacity, semi-automatic guns, and limited ammunition... and again, if that were law of the land here in Ohio, I don't think I'd picket Governor Kasich's country estate. If all some kid has is a 6-shot pistol with a total of 12 rounds, and there's a police officer (or two) roaming the hallways, his capacity for destruction would at least be substantially limited, and I think that kind of policy would be, for the most part, completely feasible. Of course, there will be some connected criminals with access to bigger weapons and additional rounds... but school shooters get their guns from family members and gun shows... and even if someone comes into your house with an UZI, it still only takes one round to take him out.

One major issue with that level of restriction, somewhat unique to the United States, is the fact that we have such an enormous gun-culture. A lot of people have a lot of guns, some of them being family heirlooms and collector's items. It would look a little nasty if police officers were going into everyone's house and confiscating all of their weapons. I guess limiting ammunition purchases would negate the issue of historical-type weapons, and you could require people with bigger, modern weaponry to store them at licensed shooting ranges or something like that. Again... lots of different things to consider, which is what makes sweeping national legislation such a bad idea.

I'm not a gun nut, I promise.
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