Gun Control

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LaserGuy
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Re: Gun Control

Postby LaserGuy » Thu Apr 11, 2013 6:06 pm UTC

Tyndmyr wrote:The militia...yes, yes, what was the militia for? Obviously, to protect the country and citizens thereof.


The militia system was to protect the country and the citizens thereof, I agree. But the militias were state-run, state-controlled operations. Private citizens could not form their own militias, and the arms, munitions, and training of the militias were necessarily known and documented to the state, in order for it to be run effectively. And, in spite of all this, as I said, it was a shit system because militias are extremely ineffective compared to professional armies.

Additionally, the principle that self defense applies even when defending oneself against elected or appointed officials is an ancient one. Position and title does not exempt you from the law. You will note that we have been talking from the perspective of defense, not insurrection all willy nilly for whatever reason. Having to shoot a crooked cop? Well, unfortunate that the situation came up, but you did no wrong. Decided to fight the power for the lulz? Obviously not protected, by Heller or anything else.


People have very different ideas of what "defense" is supposed to mean. If you're one of those people who think that taxation is theft, and you have the right to defend yourself and your property against thieves, well, then what I would call "armed insurrection", that person would call "self-defense". Indeed, there have been conversations earlier in this thread where a number of gun owners have said outright that they would mount armed insurrection against the legitimate government if they tried to legally confiscate their guns.

Ralith The Third
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Re: Gun Control

Postby Ralith The Third » Thu Apr 11, 2013 6:07 pm UTC

LaserGuy wrote:
juststrange wrote:1. The second amendment is all about about being a free state, how else are you going to defend/free yourself from a military or dictatorship if you aren't allowed access to comparable firepower?


You stop misinterpreting the Second Amendment to mean something that it doesn't.


So what's it supposed to be interpreted as? I could see it as a militia against outside threats, as well (though exclusively external and not internal seems unlikely, given the historical context) but even then you need reasonable firepower - which rifles like the AR-15 and AK-model semi-autos provide.

Edit -
jules.LT wrote:Supporting the right of everyone to own guns regardless of training is still irresponsible.

And the problem is not only accidents, it's people who pull out their gun before all other options have been exhausted.
People who pull out their gun before they'd be willing to actually shoot it, thus putting themselves at risk because they'll hesitate and putting the other person at risk because they're handling a gun when even they are not sure that it should be shot.
Murders and "Lawful killings" that could have been "defused situations" instead.

Training can pretty well impact those, just like you learn to look around before you press the gas.

Learning how to work a gun is like knowing how to work a car: hardly sufficient to be able to use it responsibly.



Learning how to operate a gun is not what a class is for. Learning how and *when* and *why* to operate a firearm is what a class is for.

edit 2 - All internet sales except the CMP already required a background check, because you have to have it shipped to an FFL who then transfers it - and runs a background check. The CMP is maybe an exception, but that's old, WW2 and prior rifles, which are not an issue. On any level. Also a government program I believe. Certainly government endorsed.
Last edited by Ralith The Third on Thu Apr 11, 2013 6:15 pm UTC, edited 1 time in total.
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Tyndmyr
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Re: Gun Control

Postby Tyndmyr » Thu Apr 11, 2013 6:08 pm UTC

jules.LT wrote:It's because people won't take the training that they do need that the training must be compulsory.
The culture of car safety is mostly propagated by the training that you receive when you get your driver's licence, and that's the tool that should be used for guns.


Sure they will. We already have a culture of safety. My gun shop gives out a coupon for a free intro class with every gun sold. They're booked up for months. Definitely popular. They're definitely not alone in that. The NRA spends the bulk of it's funding on training.

The "culture of car safety" isn't really a thing. There is a car culture. It's much, much more about working on and modding cars than it is about safety. I feel infinitely safer at a gun range than driving on the roads around here.

Tyndmyr wrote:Encouraging gun safety is always good, but we can't reasonably expect it to have an impact on criminal shootings and the like.
Teaching how to handle hot situations would.[/quote]

Oh, sure. Tactical classes are fantastic, and of lots of use in life or death situations. However, the number of people who will actually use shoot their gun in a life or death situation isn't crazy high. For the majority of gun owners, it will never happen. So, much like martial arts, the classes get taken more for other reasons than "get this to not die".

Nobody political has been proposing mandatory tactical training, though. It's invariably been the basic safety training. God, having to sit through annual training for MD about the same boring stuff over and over again would suck. I'm exempt, because I'm air force, and presumably that magically bestows permanent gun powers upon you, but it'll suck for everyone else.

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Re: Gun Control

Postby Fire Brns » Thu Apr 11, 2013 6:10 pm UTC

jules.LT wrote:I don't know how it goes in the US, but right here each car is individually registered under a license plate and its owner identified.
And when you sell a car, you inform the authorities of the new owner.

I don't see why it shouldn't be the same with guns.
It is argued that cars are not constitutionally protected rights, they drive on government roads and for example no one is calling for criminal penalties for you if your car is stolen and used in a crime or an outright banning of cars.
I care about educating them on how to handle situations that involve guns.
Anyone can talk about hypothetical scenarios in a safe classroom environment but that won't prepare individuals for if or when someone pulls a gun on you and your blood turns to ice. Discussing it is good and all but very few people are levelheaded in life and death scenarios.
I'm sure anyone on the planet older than 17 can remember a non gun instance in which they had a ridiculous jelly legged "oh shit" panic moment, and I can assume logic or training weren't running though their head at that moment. Mine was when I flipped a log over and saw I was in striking range of a pissed off adult diamondback rattlesnake and I had been thoroughly trained on how to react around venomous snakes.
There should be tests, once again, like for cars.
Tests are great and all but they are a controlled environment. No one drinks or texts and drives when they take a driving test because they would fail; that doesn't stop real drivers on the road when they aren't being observed by the person who will or will not approve their license. I see people exceed the 20 mph speed limit by 30 mph (in a school zone![while school is letting out!{!!!}]) until they round a corner and see a black and white, then I observe 4 black tire marks being put into the pavement as they crap their pants.
The idea is to make the presence of a weapon always known, not to increase the number of weapons carried around :|
Everyone in Alaska isn't carrying a shotgun so that isn't a concern. I like the presence of them being made public too, hiding them is a government requirement like it's something to be ashamed of. And it's a great conversation starter.
That they provide training on the side has nothing to do with it. They promote gun ownership whatever the circumstances, and that's irresponsible.
The NRA's political arm, yes. Their older gun education aspect, not so much. And as ridiculous as they tend to sound when quoted by major news agencies they read to me a lot more like the ACLU of guns. (It would help if they didn't have Ted Nugent as a prominent member)

Tyndmyr wrote:It's well under a thousand per year, nationwide. Swimming pools are more likely to kill someone in an accident than guns are.
some friendly advice: I think it's time to retire swimming pools. It is starting to sound like the 31k number.
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Re: Gun Control

Postby Tyndmyr » Thu Apr 11, 2013 6:13 pm UTC

LaserGuy wrote:
Tyndmyr wrote:The militia...yes, yes, what was the militia for? Obviously, to protect the country and citizens thereof.


The militia system was to protect the country and the citizens thereof, I agree. But the militias were state-run, state-controlled operations. Private citizens could not form their own militias, and the arms, munitions, and training of the militias were necessarily known and documented to the state, in order for it to be run effectively. And, in spite of all this, as I said, it was a shit system because militias are extremely ineffective compared to professional armies.


Er, please review your history. Militias were not all state-run, state-controlled operations. Some were, some weren't. Looking back on them, we frequently categorize them by state so as to easier deal with the masses of them. But yeah, sometimes it was literally just a dude who started organizing those around him.

Professional armies do crush non-professional armies. This is known. It's also irrelevant to the 2nd amendment, which DOES see militias as important. Right or wrong, what's written is what's law.

Additionally, the principle that self defense applies even when defending oneself against elected or appointed officials is an ancient one. Position and title does not exempt you from the law. You will note that we have been talking from the perspective of defense, not insurrection all willy nilly for whatever reason. Having to shoot a crooked cop? Well, unfortunate that the situation came up, but you did no wrong. Decided to fight the power for the lulz? Obviously not protected, by Heller or anything else.


People have very different ideas of what "defense" is supposed to mean. If you're one of those people who think that taxation is theft, and you have the right to defend yourself and your property against thieves, well, then what I would call "armed insurrection", that person would call "self-defense". Indeed, there have been conversations earlier in this thread where a number of gun owners have said outright that they would mount armed insurrection against the legitimate government if they tried to legally confiscate their guns.


Well, the good news is, we have law for that. Defense is based on the law, not on the particular definition you have in your head.

Like every other part of law, the 2nd amendment relies on standard, reasonable definitions of words. Defense is fairly well understood, and it definitely isn't whatever the person shooting wants it to be.

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Re: Gun Control

Postby LaserGuy » Thu Apr 11, 2013 6:14 pm UTC

Ralith The Third wrote:
LaserGuy wrote:
juststrange wrote:1. The second amendment is all about about being a free state, how else are you going to defend/free yourself from a military or dictatorship if you aren't allowed access to comparable firepower?


You stop misinterpreting the Second Amendment to mean something that it doesn't.


So what's it supposed to be interpreted as? I could see it as a militia against outside threats, as well (though exclusively external and not internal seems unlikely, given the historical context) but even then you need reasonable firepower - which rifles like the AR-15 and AK-model semi-autos provide.


And if you're part of a well-regulated, state-run militia, you are free to access those weapons for the purposes of training in your militia, or responding to threats as designated by the state.

Tyndmyr wrote:Well, the good news is, we have law for that. Defense is based on the law, not on the particular definition you have in your head.

Like every other part of law, the 2nd amendment relies on standard, reasonable definitions of words. Defense is fairly well understood, and it definitely isn't whatever the person shooting wants it to be.


And yet, we have people talking openly about armed insurrection against the government for behaving in perfectly legal manners. What does it matter if something is legal if the person rejects the legitimacy of the agency that is enforcing those laws?
Last edited by LaserGuy on Thu Apr 11, 2013 6:19 pm UTC, edited 1 time in total.

Ralith The Third
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Re: Gun Control

Postby Ralith The Third » Thu Apr 11, 2013 6:19 pm UTC

jules.LT wrote:
Tyndmyr wrote:
jules.LT wrote:I don't care about educating them on how to clean their gun or aim.
I care about educating them on how to handle situations that involve guns.

And also weed out the people who are too impulsive or nervous to handle themselves in those situations.
There should be tests, once again, like for cars.


Have you ever met a driver who willingly took drivers training beyond the minimum required by law?

Have you ever met one that needed to?

I would wager that for almost everyone, that second group is vastly larger than the first. Why? Well, we have a culture that says, gee, you got a driver's license(which practically everyone gets), so you're good to go. Lots of people barely pay attention in the training, and certainly a lot of people don't retain the training in practice. And, since you've fulfilled the standard cultural expectations, nobody feels it necessary to take further education unless a court requires it.

We don't need a law to provide safety, we need a culture of safety.
It's because people won't take the training that they do need that the training must be compulsory.
The culture of car safety is mostly propagated by the training that you receive when you get your driver's licence, and that's the tool that should be used for guns.

The culture of car safety is a joke. The culture of gun safety is the very opposite. One has mandatory safety lessons and training. One doesn't - but most people take them anyways, or learns what is needed through participation in the culture. The few cases where safety classes are a requirement for gun ownership leads to shitty safety classes that are, if anything, a net negative.

Tyndmyr wrote:Encouraging gun safety is always good, but we can't reasonably expect it to have an impact on criminal shootings and the like.
Teaching how to handle hot situations would.


I'm not sure how being taught how to handle "hot situations" would reduce crime.

EDIT - Laser - Well-regulated in the 1700s does not mean what it does in the 2000s. It did not mean regulated in the sense of legislated and restricted - it meant, at most, "smoothly running." Nor is state-run anywhere in the 2nd amendment. Which is an argument in favor of my interpretation.

Who's talking about openly armed insurrection against the government, exactly?
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Re: Gun Control

Postby Fire Brns » Thu Apr 11, 2013 6:23 pm UTC

LaserGuy wrote:And if you're part of a well-regulated, state-run militia, you are free to access those weapons for the purposes of training in your militia, or responding to threats as designated by the state.

But the presence of militias allows for free actors in the absence of a state such as foreign invasion in which local state armories would be captured or inaccessible. In what instances of a local threat in which the state would require calling in militias would infrastructure be sufficiently unimpeded for the use of said militias? No, having a gun at home to use if the ridiculously off chance that the Russians suddenly started dropping paratroopers into your town is preferable than expecting reasonable access to an ammunition dump during a period of Martial Law.

edit: fixed, stupid autospellcheck
Last edited by Fire Brns on Thu Apr 11, 2013 6:32 pm UTC, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Gun Control

Postby Ralith The Third » Thu Apr 11, 2013 6:25 pm UTC

Fire Brns wrote:
LaserGuy wrote:And if you're part of a well-regulated, state-run militia, you are free to access those weapons for the purposes of training in your militia, or responding to threats as designated by the state.

But the presence of militias allows for free actors in the absence of a state such as foreign invasion in which local state armories would be captured or inaccessible. In what instances of a local threat in which the state would require calling in militias would infrastructure be sufficiently unimpeded for the use of said militias? No, having a gun at home to use if the ridiculously off chance that the Russians suddenly started dropping paratroopers into your town is preferable than expecting reasonable access to an ammunition dump during a period of Marshall Law.


Martial law.

/nitpick
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Re: Gun Control

Postby juststrange » Thu Apr 11, 2013 6:43 pm UTC

LaserGuy wrote:Indeed, there have been conversations earlier in this thread where a number of gun owners have said outright that they would mount armed insurrection against the legitimate government if they tried to legally confiscate their guns.


Is a government that swears to to uphold the phrase "the right of the People to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed" and then tries to 'legally' confiscate guns really legitimate? Things that are 'legal' but not constitutional don't tend to stay 'legal' long once people catch on (at least thats how the system is supposed to work). A militia then was composed of the body of the people, less (religious) objectors.

I can tell you as a gun owner I do the bare required minimum in informing the government as to what guns I own and where they are. My homebuilts would require registration if I'd bought them, but since I built them I don't have to, and I won't.

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Re: Gun Control

Postby LaserGuy » Thu Apr 11, 2013 6:54 pm UTC

Ralith The Third wrote:EDIT - Laser - Well-regulated in the 1700s does not mean what it does in the 2000s.

It did not mean regulated in the sense of legislated and restricted - it meant, at most, "smoothly running."


And in the 1700s, "arms" were muskets and bayonets.

Who's talking about openly armed insurrection against the government, exactly?


I'll leave this here as a starting point. You probably won't like the source, but everything there is linked, so you can judge the veracity of each claim for yourself.

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Re: Gun Control

Postby Fire Brns » Thu Apr 11, 2013 7:10 pm UTC

LaserGuy wrote:
Ralith The Third wrote:EDIT - Laser - Well-regulated in the 1700s does not mean what it does in the 2000s.

It did not mean regulated in the sense of legislated and restricted - it meant, at most, "smoothly running."


And in the 1700s, "arms" were muskets and bayonets.
And war clubs and pikes and swords and daggers and cannons and artillery. don't forget those if we are going for historical accuracies. And nobody should be allowed to own a boat more modern than a galleon because metal hulls are too resistant to cannon fire.

Bayonets are just improvements upon sharpened sticks which are themselves 50,000 year old technology. Our military still uses bayonets so you can't claim they are obsolete, they don't use horses anymore but we now have horseless carriages and motorized horses.

Muskets were a major improvement from the wheellocks of the 1500's which were an improvement of matchlocks of the 1400's, which were an improvement of the handcannons of the 1200's, which were an improvement from 1 pounder cannons, which were improvements from 5 pounders, and we can bring this back all the way to ballistas and trebuchets, and then all the way back to bows and arrows and slingshots of you want. It only trivializes the argument by towing party lines.

But by "the ancient designs were what were legal" argument then people can own napalm and hand grenades. Considering the fact that hand grenades and napalm are millennium old technology.
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Re: Gun Control

Postby LaserGuy » Thu Apr 11, 2013 7:16 pm UTC

Fire Brns wrote:
LaserGuy wrote:
Ralith The Third wrote:EDIT - Laser - Well-regulated in the 1700s does not mean what it does in the 2000s.

It did not mean regulated in the sense of legislated and restricted - it meant, at most, "smoothly running."


And in the 1700s, "arms" were muskets and bayonets.
And war clubs and pikes and swords and daggers and cannons and artillery. don't forget those if we are going for historical accuracies. And nobody should be allowed to own a boat more modern than a galleon because metal hulls are too resistant to cannon fire.

Bayonets are just improvements upon sharpened sticks which are themselves 50,000 year old technology. Our military still uses bayonets so you can't claim they are obsolete, they don't use horses anymore but we now have horseless carriages and motorized horses.

Muskets were a major improvement from the wheellocks of the 1500's which were an improvement of matchlocks of the 1400's, which were an improvement of the handcannons of the 1200's, which were an improvement from 1 pounder cannons, which were improvements from 5 pounders, and we can bring this back all the way to ballistas and trebuchets, and then all the way back to bows and arrows and slingshots of you want. It only trivializes the argument by towing party lines.

But by "the ancient designs were what were legal" argument then people can own napalm and hand grenades. Considering the fact that hand grenades and napalm are millennium old technology.


I'm not sure what you're trying to prove. He contended that we should use a historical definition of a term in the 2nd Amendment over the modern one. I was merely pointing out that, in that case, we should use historical terms for all of them, or none at all.

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Re: Gun Control

Postby Alexius » Thu Apr 11, 2013 7:40 pm UTC

LaserGuy wrote:
Ralith The Third wrote:EDIT - Laser - Well-regulated in the 1700s does not mean what it does in the 2000s.

It did not mean regulated in the sense of legislated and restricted - it meant, at most, "smoothly running."


And in the 1700s, "arms" were muskets and bayonets.

That argument can also be used to restrict free speech to hand-cranked printing presses and speaking trumpets. It is reasonable to allow for changes in technology when interpreting old laws but have the other words in those laws retain their original meaning.

Also, under current US law (written in the 20th century), the militia is defined as all able-bodied male citizens between the ages of 17 and 45.

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Re: Gun Control

Postby Tyndmyr » Thu Apr 11, 2013 7:44 pm UTC

LaserGuy wrote:
Ralith The Third wrote:
LaserGuy wrote:
juststrange wrote:1. The second amendment is all about about being a free state, how else are you going to defend/free yourself from a military or dictatorship if you aren't allowed access to comparable firepower?


You stop misinterpreting the Second Amendment to mean something that it doesn't.


So what's it supposed to be interpreted as? I could see it as a militia against outside threats, as well (though exclusively external and not internal seems unlikely, given the historical context) but even then you need reasonable firepower - which rifles like the AR-15 and AK-model semi-autos provide.


And if you're part of a well-regulated, state-run militia, you are free to access those weapons for the purposes of training in your militia, or responding to threats as designated by the state.


That's not how militias were run at the time of writing. It's obviously not what they were talking about. This was the era when the majority of US warships were in private hands. The idea that you could only have arms when the state issued them to you is not one accepted by the US at that period.

In fact, that exact disagreement is what led to the "shot heard round the world". That was the brits coming to get a cannon, and the local militias not really agreeing with them.

Tyndmyr wrote:And yet, we have people talking openly about armed insurrection against the government for behaving in perfectly legal manners. What does it matter if something is legal if the person rejects the legitimacy of the agency that is enforcing those laws?


No, we only have you talking about that.

LaserGuy wrote:
Ralith The Third wrote:EDIT - Laser - Well-regulated in the 1700s does not mean what it does in the 2000s.

It did not mean regulated in the sense of legislated and restricted - it meant, at most, "smoothly running."


And in the 1700s, "arms" were muskets and bayonets.


And rifles and warships and rockets and mortars.

Furthermore, freedom of speech does not apply only to printing presses and period paper. The internet gets it too.



Saying "we have to use historical terms for all or none" is not logical. We can determine what principle they were expounding using the words as they would have understood them. We can apply this principle to everything covered. If we do it for free speech and the internet, it'd be terribly inconsistent not to do it for modern guns.

Not that the basic principles have really changed for guns. A rifle then operates on the same principles as a rifle now. We're just a crapton better at manufacturing things with tight tolerances now.

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Re: Gun Control

Postby Ralith The Third » Thu Apr 11, 2013 9:13 pm UTC

Well, the whole "breech" thing is a pretty big change... but it's more akin to printing via plates (newspaper) instead of set type, than even internet.

Crazy's gonna craze. No significant body is actually recommending we overthrow the government by force of arms. If there were - well, wouldn't that kind of be a hint that something's not right?

Besides that, all points have been covered.
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Re: Gun Control

Postby Tyndmyr » Thu Apr 11, 2013 9:21 pm UTC

Ralith The Third wrote:Well, the whole "breech" thing is a pretty big change... but it's more akin to printing via plates (newspaper) instead of set type, than even internet.

Crazy's gonna craze. No significant body is actually recommending we overthrow the government by force of arms. If there were - well, wouldn't that kind of be a hint that something's not right?

Besides that, all points have been covered.


First breachloaders date from the 16th century. Henry the 8th had one he used for hunting. More might have existed before then, but that's the first famous one we know of.

Multiple shot guns were also a thing then. There was a seven barrelled musket that was in use in the British navy at the time, and the duckfoot styled pistols had some popularity in that period. Other developments like the reloadable cartridge were also invented prior to the US revolution. If I'm not mistaken, the first breach loaded, cartridge based gun was in the very early 1700s. By the time of revolution, it was actually a standardized, battle deployed weapon for the british(the ferguson rifle).

The huge development(for all machinery, not just guns), was standardization and tight tolerances, so you could interchange parts at will. We actually see the beginnings of that in the Brown Bess(brit musket), though. Guns were actually some of the earliest developed aspects of the industrial age...kind of a harbinger of the change that would sweep all industries.

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Re: Gun Control

Postby Fire Brns » Thu Apr 11, 2013 9:34 pm UTC

LaserGuy wrote:I'm not sure what you're trying to prove. He contended that we should use a historical definition of a term in the 2nd Amendment over the modern one. I was merely pointing out that, in that case, we should use historical terms for all of them, or none at all.
The intention of the amendment was how it was implemented, not the weapons it applied to. Being hopelessly semantical doesn't make the argument less valid. Otherwise it would have specified weapons instead of using the incredibly broad term "arms".
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Re: Gun Control

Postby Tyndmyr » Thu Apr 11, 2013 11:03 pm UTC

Ah, further investigation reveals that the toomey-manchin compromise is not yet part of the bill, but is simply a proposed amendment that will be offered on the floor. I feel that it fixes the issues with the background check portion of the bill, but there's no guarantee that it will be adopted. In fact, because it's kind of a sweeping rewrite, it will likely garner more objections from more corners than more limited amendments.

I don't think it's a bad idea, myself, but I can see why NRA opposed voting for cloture. After all, a successful filibuster would have been an overt win for them. I don't know how likely the compromise is to go through, but if we get that, and we get a similarly good amendment of the other sections, it might not be a bad deal after all.

NAGR will, of course, oppose the compromise. They're 100% against background checks in any form, and indeed, think that criminals, if they are fit to be let back into society, should have all rights restored. Don't know if I agree with that, but I understand it, at any rate.

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Re: Gun Control

Postby Trasvi » Fri Apr 12, 2013 1:28 am UTC

Fire Brns wrote:
Tyndmyr wrote:It's well under a thousand per year, nationwide. Swimming pools are more likely to kill someone in an accident than guns are.
some friendly advice: I think it's time to retire swimming pools. It is starting to sound like the 31k number.

Or, swimming pools can be regulated :)
I don't know what the position is in the US, but pools in Australia *must* be completely surrounded in a 'child-proof' fence (even if you have no children or it is on an already fenced properly). Inspectors can come around unannounced to inspect your pool and you can face fines if they believe it is insecure and you don't fix it within a reasonable amount of time. And at-home drownings in pools are at ridiculously low levels (~15 child drownings in pools nationwide) considering we have the highest private swimming pools per capita of any nation (about 30 times the US).
Pro Pool Control!

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Re: Gun Control

Postby Ralith The Third » Fri Apr 12, 2013 2:36 am UTC

Right, but a pool is something that has accidental deaths happen, even if a full-fledged adult isn't idiotic.

If all adults were intelligent about guns, noone would die accidentally. As it is... you can't legislate stupid. Not past where it is now, at least.
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Re: Gun Control

Postby sardia » Fri Apr 12, 2013 4:53 am UTC

Wow, this many posts about the SCOTUS's 2nd amendment, and nobody brought up that in both cases, it went 5-4? That is not something you want to assign historical value to. 5-4 is just doesn't have the same ring to it like a 9-0 or 8-1 ruling does. Having a slim majority means it's within reach for a president to tip it his way. (Typically a president gets 1 justice per term, I think.) Of course, all the potential retirees are all democratic appointments, so a 5-4 ruling will last a really long time. If you don't agree with me on this because you like guns, consider other questionable 5-4 cases. Citizens United anyone? How about Bush v Gore? The Affordable Care Act?

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Re: Gun Control

Postby Tyndmyr » Fri Apr 12, 2013 11:45 am UTC

sardia wrote:Wow, this many posts about the SCOTUS's 2nd amendment, and nobody brought up that in both cases, it went 5-4? That is not something you want to assign historical value to. 5-4 is just doesn't have the same ring to it like a 9-0 or 8-1 ruling does. Having a slim majority means it's within reach for a president to tip it his way. (Typically a president gets 1 justice per term, I think.) Of course, all the potential retirees are all democratic appointments, so a 5-4 ruling will last a really long time. If you don't agree with me on this because you like guns, consider other questionable 5-4 cases. Citizens United anyone? How about Bush v Gore? The Affordable Care Act?


Law is law regardless of the margin it passed by. I do wish justices were less partisan sometimes, but it seems unavoidable. One could agree or disagree with any decision, regardless of the margin of victory, and people do...but the side with the majority is law.

One should also point out that there are two different dissenting opinions, and the first one is literally "I can't believe the framers would put limits on government". That's kind of ludicrous.

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Re: Gun Control

Postby Alexius » Fri Apr 12, 2013 12:28 pm UTC

Ralith The Third wrote:If all adults were intelligent about guns, noone would die accidentally. As it is... you can't legislate stupid. Not past where it is now, at least.

Depends how you define "intelligent"- there would probably still be the odd hunting accident. Not to mention that the USA, as far as I know, has no proofing requirement so there would also be guns occasionally blowing up in the user's face.

If you want to say "there's no such thing as an accident, all 'accidental' deaths are due to people being stupid", then that should apply to things like cars and swimming pools as well as guns.

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Re: Gun Control

Postby Fire Brns » Fri Apr 12, 2013 2:45 pm UTC

Alexius wrote:
Ralith The Third wrote:If all adults were intelligent about guns, noone would die accidentally. As it is... you can't legislate stupid. Not past where it is now, at least.

Depends how you define "intelligent"- there would probably still be the odd hunting accident. Not to mention that the USA, as far as I know, has no proofing requirement so there would also be guns occasionally blowing up in the user's face.
The proof act in the UK was passed in 1978 so guns accidentally exploding wasn't a big concern. I can't locate any similar US laws though most US guns are made well enough though. Exploding guns anyway are more likely from overuse an/or irregular ammunition(extra gunpowder) than poor manufacture.

If you want to say "there's no such thing as an accident, all 'accidental' deaths are due to people being stupid", then that should apply to things like cars and swimming pools as well as guns.

There are two types of accidents and they can be divided along the same lines voluntary and involuntary manslaughter are.

With hunting accidents for example:
We have: Rifle leaning against tree falls over, trigger catches twig jutting up from ground and it shoots someone in the hip.
And then we have: People who shoot at any movement in the woods and end up hitting a hiker.

First one was an honest mistake, second one was willful negligence. And both can be prevented but it's only in the latter that someone is at fault.
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Re: Gun Control

Postby sardia » Sun Apr 14, 2013 5:38 pm UTC

I'd be careful with that logic, tyndmyr. Gun rights faction has wide support now, and its easy to declare majority rule. But you didn't react kindly to majority rule on a state level, say Maryland.

This thread finally slowed down to a reasonable pace so I wanna cover the restrictions congress put on the ATF and the CDC. I find it odd for NRA supporters to claim there's no good data on guns and violence. Except they turn around and got congress to ban studying the data the ATF collects.
http://www.slate.com/articles/health_an ... t_cdc.html
You dismissed it as merely advisory but to strip millions from a cash strapped agency, that's intimidation. The ATF forced to use paper and hand searching is retarded. How does moving the ATF into the digital age hurt privacy so badly that it must use analog? It's clever to go for freedom and privacy angle, but I find it disingenuous.

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Re: Gun Control

Postby Tyndmyr » Mon Apr 15, 2013 2:26 am UTC

Alexius wrote:
Ralith The Third wrote:If all adults were intelligent about guns, noone would die accidentally. As it is... you can't legislate stupid. Not past where it is now, at least.

Depends how you define "intelligent"- there would probably still be the odd hunting accident. Not to mention that the USA, as far as I know, has no proofing requirement so there would also be guns occasionally blowing up in the user's face.

If you want to say "there's no such thing as an accident, all 'accidental' deaths are due to people being stupid", then that should apply to things like cars and swimming pools as well as guns.


Hunting accidents should be pretty unlikely. Making sure of your target and what's behind it is one of the four basic rules of gun safety. I'm not saying that some strange circumstance can't arise where a genuine accident could occur...but right now, essentially 100% of accidents are blatantly the fault of the gun owner or user, and are overtly negligent.

Guns blowing up is pretty rare. It's almost always a case of user error(Ie, feeding a 20 ga round into a 12 ga, which will slide down into the barrel, resulting in an obstructed barrel when a 12 ga shell is fired). Guns are generally pretty heavily over-engineered, and will almost invariably last for decades, even with moderate mistreatment. Gun manufacturers are liable for a design that causes guns to boom, but that's not something I'd actually worry about.

sardia wrote:I'd be careful with that logic, tyndmyr. Gun rights faction has wide support now, and its easy to declare majority rule. But you didn't react kindly to majority rule on a state level, say Maryland.


And sure enough, it is indeed law here. For now, at least. I don't have to like it, but I recognize that the law is what it is, and fully intend to comply with it. The "I don't agree with a law, so it's not a law" line of thought is...problematic.

This thread finally slowed down to a reasonable pace so I wanna cover the restrictions congress put on the ATF and the CDC. I find it odd for NRA supporters to claim there's no good data on guns and violence. Except they turn around and got congress to ban studying the data the ATF collects.
http://www.slate.com/articles/health_an ... t_cdc.html
You dismissed it as merely advisory but to strip millions from a cash strapped agency, that's intimidation. The ATF forced to use paper and hand searching is retarded. How does moving the ATF into the digital age hurt privacy so badly that it must use analog? It's clever to go for freedom and privacy angle, but I find it disingenuous.


I have no particular problem with digitization...but gun laws are sufficiently restrictive that the entire sector is mostly locked into paper and pen. Gun dealers, ATF, manufacturers...all of them have to do ridiculous amounts of paperwork the manual way. It's kind of an inefficient system, but there's no huge drive to modernize it, as both sides have things they want a lot more.

Disliking the ATF based on their legacy of failure and outright harassment/crime is fair, though. Most government agencies, no matter how inefficient, tend to stop short of actually killing US citizens.

As for the CDC, the language added to their '96 funding bill is as follows: “none of the funds made available for injury prevention and control at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention may be used to advocate or promote gun control.”

That doesn't seem overly restrictive. It's basically anti-lobbying on a particular topic. They can(and indeed, do) report stats on firearm deaths and the like. They simply can't go around stumping for one side. Now, you might want a similar block for the other side as well, and that'd be fair. In practice, it hasn't come up much, but I wouldn't object to limiting lobbying on either side of the issue.

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Re: Gun Control

Postby sardia » Mon Apr 15, 2013 4:13 am UTC

I have no particular problem with digitization...but gun laws are sufficiently restrictive that the entire sector is mostly locked into paper and pen. Gun dealers, ATF, manufacturers...all of them have to do ridiculous amounts of paperwork the manual way. It's kind of an inefficient system, but there's no huge drive to modernize it, as both sides have things they want a lot more.

Disliking the ATF based on their legacy of failure and outright harassment/crime is fair, though. Most government agencies, no matter how inefficient, tend to stop short of actually killing US citizens.

As for the CDC, the language added to their '96 funding bill is as follows: “none of the funds made available for injury prevention and control at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention may be used to advocate or promote gun control.”

That doesn't seem overly restrictive. It's basically anti-lobbying on a particular topic. They can(and indeed, do) report stats on firearm deaths and the like. They simply can't go around stumping for one side. Now, you might want a similar block for the other side as well, and that'd be fair. In practice, it hasn't come up much, but I wouldn't object to limiting lobbying on either side of the issue.
I concur, brutality by law enforcement is a bad thing. Still no reason to make the other sections within the ATF hamstrung. Yup, making that clerk wade knee deep in paperwork sure showed those field agents. They won't ever brutalize their suspects again.

I disagree with your assessment of the CDC funding restriction. It isn't how the people at the CDC feel about the language. They interpret it as
"The statutory language, which remains in appropriations legislation for the Department of Health and Human Services to this day, is that “none of the funds made available in this title may be used, in whole or in part, to advocate or promote gun control.” I think it’s fair to say that this language has been interpreted at times to mean that none of the funds could be used to support research that, depending on its findings, might be used in support of efforts to alter current firearm policy.
To make sure federal agencies got the message, Rep. Jay Dickey (R-Ark.) sponsored an amendment that stripped $2.6 million from the CDC’s budget, the exact amount it had spent on firearms research the previous year."
That's not "don't push an agenda", this is don't fund studies that involve guns. I mean if you want to make sure the CDC officials are not being paid off by the NRA or that the studies being funded are objective, yea that's good. But this isn't how or what Congress is doing. The CDC was one of the biggest sources of funding for gun studies, so this isn't small potatoes.

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Re: Gun Control

Postby jules.LT » Mon Apr 15, 2013 9:43 am UTC

It's as if even gun advocates thought that gun-related scientific research would naturally go against them... :oops:
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Re: Gun Control

Postby leady » Mon Apr 15, 2013 12:04 pm UTC

and yet its amazing the level of confirmation bias seeps into the average soft science paper, so I can't fault the logic.

You can guarantee the media will use the headline "CDC finds that 2nd ammendment kills children" but won't bother to trackdown or report on the methodogical flaw on page 25

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Re: Gun Control

Postby Tyndmyr » Mon Apr 15, 2013 12:17 pm UTC

sardia wrote: I concur, brutality by law enforcement is a bad thing. Still no reason to make the other sections within the ATF hamstrung. Yup, making that clerk wade knee deep in paperwork sure showed those field agents. They won't ever brutalize their suspects again.


Yeah, focus is often lacking when agencies get disciplined. Tends to fall on everyone in the agency in the form of new strictures or reduced funding. It's unfortunate, but congress tends to not be great at singling out the most efficient way to do something.

I disagree with your assessment of the CDC funding restriction. It isn't how the people at the CDC feel about the language. They interpret it as
"The statutory language, which remains in appropriations legislation for the Department of Health and Human Services to this day, is that “none of the funds made available in this title may be used, in whole or in part, to advocate or promote gun control.” I think it’s fair to say that this language has been interpreted at times to mean that none of the funds could be used to support research that, depending on its findings, might be used in support of efforts to alter current firearm policy.
To make sure federal agencies got the message, Rep. Jay Dickey (R-Ark.) sponsored an amendment that stripped $2.6 million from the CDC’s budget, the exact amount it had spent on firearms research the previous year."
That's not "don't push an agenda", this is don't fund studies that involve guns. I mean if you want to make sure the CDC officials are not being paid off by the NRA or that the studies being funded are objective, yea that's good. But this isn't how or what Congress is doing. The CDC was one of the biggest sources of funding for gun studies, so this isn't small potatoes.


Well, keep in mind that the initial study that kicked this off was denounced by the head of the GA AMA(this was mostly a Georgia event) as "junk science", and does kind of purport to draw sweeping conclusions from the data of a mere three countries, and leaps from correlation to an entirely unsupported causality.

Additionally, the CDCs $2.6 mil was merely earmarked for prevention of traumatic brain injury. So, while this likely did mean it was a "stop supporting gun control" statement, it isn't as if it meant lower investment in public safety. I realize you haven't claimed this, but I thought it an important clarification.

Now, every federal agency I've known of has had a lot of strictures, many MUCH more onerous than this one. Normally, when you want to research something close to the line, you run it through your agencies legal division, and get the thumbs up/down. In this case, they either seem to have an extremely risk adverse legal department, or there's simply a lack of interest in studying the topic. Or...wait, maybe they kept doing research anyway.

http://www.cdc.gov/healthyyouth/yrbs/pdf/us_violence_trend_yrbs.pdf actually breaks down violence by weapon carrying tendencies. It was done after '96. It simply avoids the provocative title and unproven causality. Also, has a much larger dataset.

http://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/preview/mmwrhtml/mm6018a1.htm?s_cid=mm6018a1_w directly mentions gun control among the ways being used to try to stop firearm violence. Definitely done after '96. Seems to take a much more holistic view than simply trying to say "guns are bad", though. Instead, they're analyzing a specific problem and outlining a number of solutions.

So, from those sources, I'd say the stricture is having exactly the intended effect. They haven't been diverted away from studying anything to do with gun violence, they merely can't use it to lobby for gun control.

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Re: Gun Control

Postby jules.LT » Mon Apr 15, 2013 3:38 pm UTC

If you want to show that gun-related research hasn't been impeded, you might want to go further than anecdotal evidence.
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Re: Gun Control

Postby Ralith The Third » Mon Apr 15, 2013 5:55 pm UTC

I.. Jules, he listed two different CDC studies regarding guns.

That's *not* anecdotal evidence. That's the direct, polar opposite of anecdotal evidence.
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Re: Gun Control

Postby Byrel » Mon Apr 15, 2013 10:20 pm UTC

jules.LT wrote:If you want to show that gun-related research hasn't been impeded

That isn't quite what he was showing. It was in response to
sardia wrote: this language has been interpreted at times to mean that none of the funds could be used to support research that ... might be used in support of efforts to alter current firearm policy.


He cited two studies where the CDC legal department took a radically different interpretation of their strictures. While it doesn't establish that the CDC legal department never blocked a study for its potential utility in a gun control debate, it does indicate that such utility was not a sufficient condition for blockage.

Besides, why would anyone expect an agency to take such a peculiarly restrictive view of their permitted scope? That's the complete opposite of the normal tendency of governmental agencies (and people in general, for that matter.)

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Re: Gun Control

Postby sardia » Mon Apr 15, 2013 10:32 pm UTC

The why is simple, threats/intimidation by being denied funds, even temporarily. The part we're arguing over with is if it happened, and to what degree. Like if it was suppressed for 2 years, or 2 months, or not at all. I'll try to dig up why they're throwing charges like intimidation, while Tyndmyr is claiming nothing is happening. You know, debating back and forth.

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Re: Gun Control

Postby jules.LT » Mon Apr 15, 2013 11:29 pm UTC

The bit he's giving anecdotal evidence for is this:
Tyndmyr wrote:They haven't been diverted away from studying anything to do with gun violence
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Re: Gun Control

Postby Fire Brns » Mon Apr 15, 2013 11:32 pm UTC

sardia wrote:The why is simple, threats/intimidation by being denied funds, even temporarily.
They wouldn't have to worry about threats if they are doing their job properly like they have for years. The CDC is one of the shiniest most well made gears in the machine.
They have shown before (as tyndmyr pointed out) that gun related studies can be done without political motive being inserted into it, the law as implicative as it is would only set a guideline for the CDC to maintain it's high level of quality and prevent political activism from molesting science.
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Re: Gun Control

Postby Ralith The Third » Tue Apr 16, 2013 2:09 am UTC

jules.LT wrote:The bit he's giving anecdotal evidence for is this:
Tyndmyr wrote:They haven't been diverted away from studying anything to do with gun violence


Uh, they did *at least* two studies regarding gun violence. Clearly, they're willing to do studies regarding gun violence.

Honestly, them being leery about doing so? That's good. It keeps shitty science from getting in - the methodological flaw on page 25 someone mentioned.
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Re: Gun Control

Postby jules.LT » Tue Apr 16, 2013 7:54 am UTC

They weren't discouraged from doing bad science, they were discouraged from doing research on a specific subject.
We've seen the pressure, and I find it very doubtful that it didn't have any effect.

And there was no "methodological error on page 25" example, it was just a statement that there are sometimes such mistakes, as in any research.
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Re: Gun Control

Postby Tyndmyr » Tue Apr 16, 2013 10:58 am UTC

jules.LT wrote:The bit he's giving anecdotal evidence for is this:
Tyndmyr wrote:They haven't been diverted away from studying anything to do with gun violence


It's not an anecdote. They're examples to show that gun violence research has still happened.

I won't claim that nothing at all changed. Merely that the intimidation away from anything to do with guns does not actually seem to be what happened. It does seem that they took a stance that is much more neutral, and one that does not resemble advocacy of gun control. From a data gathering and research perspective, I am very ok with that result. If advocacy with government dollars happens at all, it should happen well after the research has nailed down something in a pretty airtight fashion...and I really don't want my research agency getting all wrapped up in advocacy at all. It's got too much potential to start affecting the research.

The CDCs a good agency when, as usual, they're operating within their proper purview. Still, every agency has limits to keep their work in scope, and basically all of them trace back to some incident when the agency got a bit carried away and overreached. That's pretty much how the executive branch runs.


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