Discussion in 'Community' started by Ghost, Dec 14, 2012.
Possessing a gun to protect yourself from the government is an acceptable course of action in third world countries or 18th Century America.
To hide behind it as a rationale for possessing military-style assault rifles capable of massive damage in 2012 America is offensive, ludicrous, and pathetic.
Half the military are those rednecks, though.
Yeah most of the 'I need my guns for the eventual 2nd American Revolution' guys I know firmly believe that over 75% of the military will join them in their revolt.
Okay, but I was arguing against a idiotic justification for civilian gun ownership. If half the military defects in response to a dictatorship, they would likely take a bunch of weapons with them, rendering some survivalist's gun collection moot.
Well they believe the military would join them. Personally I feel if you can't trust your military to put down revolts why bother having one?
We would, of course, still be under British rule if everyone believed this. And there would be a lot of people still living under incredibly repressive regimes all over the world.
If I were a Syrian, I would be fighting on the government's side.
And during the American Rebellion, I would have fought for the Empire. Because reasonable taxes to pay for wars that the colonists started aren't a good enough reason for 100,000 deaths.
However, I do believe that there are times where you can take up arms against the government to protect yourself, but the standard is pretty high, because rebellion and anarchy have a terrible price.
A military is supposed to defend the nation from foreign and domestic threats. If a revolt breaks out and half the military sides with the rebels it wasn't a very effective military.
It wasn't just that. I don't know why people insist on this mis-characterization. Yeah, people weren't happy with the steep taxes (which the wealthiest could usually avoid through smuggling), but this biggest reason they revolted is that they were being taxed by a government in which they had no representation. And initially they wanted to stay British.
So that's worth 100,000 deaths, destabilization of the Empire, and treason against your Sovereign?
I wasn't necessarily arguing that it was "right" or "just" or anything, as I'm pretty anti-war in general. But come to think of it, I'd probably put it up there among the best reasons the U.S. has gone to war.
Can you give me an example of what one of those times would be? That would meet your standard?
Feticide is an immensely more heinous and severe violation of personal rights than genital mutilation, and I don't advocate for violence in response to that, let alone genital mutilation.
When the net effect of rebellion is better than the net effect of the tyrannical regime. That's a pretty rare circumstance.
Arming yourself for rebellion against the American government in 2012 isn't even worthy of a discussion, it's a joke.
Don't you suppose that the majority of times when a rebellion happens, that the people involved in that rebellion, who would have more knowledge about the relative costs, would have considered and made that calculation? I mean, it's very easy for someone who lived separated from British rule by over two hundred years to say that the relative costs were out of balance; same with someone who does not live under the oppressive regime of Syria or Egypt or wherever. But those who did live under those rules made the exact calculation you're discussing and came out with a different result than you might as someone divorced from the situation. That's why I was hoping for some sort of concrete example from you rather than the rather vague one that you gave.
oh man, that was close.
woo almost lost it that time.
I believe every American should have the right to own an M1 Abram. Also, stinger missiles would be handy. Possibly an F-16 depending on the size of your garage.
i think we should all get nuclear bombs. but not until we're 12.
do you realize how much safer we would be if robocops could transform their hands into nuclear bomb shooters at will?
Very sensible. Although, I think I could handle a nuke at a younger age due to my experience with firecrackers.
An armed population is no guarantee of liberty.
There are countries with well armed populations who've suffered oppressive totalitarian regimes. There are plenty of examples of democracies with strict gun control.
A democratic government should not need to fear its people, and vice versa. Education (especially of women), and innovation are the best guarantees of liberty, freedom and loads of other good stuff. America has that covered, by and large.
The Russians are not likely to invade America any time soon. The Chinese don't seem interested in invading the USA either. Canada and Mexico are no threat. No citizen militia could hope to survive direct conflict with US forces, nor hope to make any meaningful difference to the outcome of a foreign invasion anyway. America's militias have been effectively obsolete since the dawning of the nuclear age, if not before.
Having an armed population as a kind of constitutional token comes at too high a price.
I've been having this discussion on another board with someone that I have a lot of respect for, but who cannot approach this subject in anything except an emotional manner. I strongly disagree with him, because policy should not be set by emotion, but by reason and evidence.
The simple fact is that the vast majority of firearms are never used to kill anyone. According to CDC statistics, there were just under 12000 homicides in the US in 2009 (the most recent year I've found data for). While we don't have any specific numbers, there are an estimated 300 million guns in the US, with somewhere between 50-100 million of them being handguns. If we were to assume that every homicide was committed with a different handgun, and use the lower estimate for how many handguns there are, we get that no more than 0.024% of all handguns are involved in a homicide in any specific year. That means that at least 99.976% of all handguns are not used to kill someone in any given year. If you instead use the same assumptions with respect to all guns (not just handguns), that number increases to 99.996%. And, that's assuming a different gun for each homicide. As we saw yesterday, multiple homicides can (and often are) tied to a single gun.
Quite simply, guns themselves are not the problem. They are, at best, a distraction from the problem.
I have no problem with gun control in theory, as long as it can be shown to meet three criteria:
1) It has to be effective
2) It has to address the actual problem it is claimed to address, and
3) It has to not disproportionately affect the law-abiding citizen.
The problem with most gun control proposals is that they either don't work (the 1994 Assault Weapons Ban had almost no effect on crime rates and only addressed cosmetic features), they don't address the causes of the incidents that instigate them (such as calling to close the "gun show loophole" because of the Virginia Tech attack, when Cho didn't buy his guns at a gun show and passed the required background checks), and they only really affect those who are willing to follow the law in the first place.
For example, what purpose would a waiting period serve? These days, because of the National Instant Check System, it's not needed anymore to perform the background checks. A "cooling off" period doesn't seem like it would have helped in any of the recent mass shootings, as the shooters either stole the guns (as appears to have happened yesterday) or bought the guns well in advance. Within that frame of reference, what purpose would a waiting period serve, except to make it more inconvenient for someone to buy a gun?
Similarly, what good does a limit on the size of a magazine make? Columbine took place when there was a 10-round limit, and it made no real difference in the body count. At the same time, in two recent shootings, lives were saved because the assailant used large magazines (which are prone to jam, slowing the shooter down). In both Aurora and Tucson, there are reports of the large magazines causing problems, which probably saved lives. Additionally, a person can train in reloading from a spare magazine, and get proficient in relatively little time. After less than a day of practice, I was able to get down to under 2 seconds to reload from a spare magazine.
Remember, Connecticut ranks at #5 on the Brady Campaign's scorecard for gun control. Only California, New Jersey, Massachusetts, and New York rank higher, and yet something like this can still happen. If you want to propose changes that will actually work (such as the mental health reporting requirements changed after Virginia Tech), I'll support it. But if you are simply going to try and make things inconvenient for the law-abiding citizen, forget about it.