Date sent: Thu, 27 May 1999 21:45:22 -0500 From: Steve Tucker <firstname.lastname@example.org> Subject: Re: Guns [was Re: property Rights] To: email@example.com Send reply to: firstname.lastname@example.org
> "Joe E. Dees" wrote:
> > It cannot be argued that removing guns selectively from those with
> > the propensity to lawlessly and/or irresponsibly use them
> > (convicted violent criminals, children, the mentally deficient or
> > deranged, spouse and/or child abusers) would provide the
> > maximum in societal protection. However, the pro-gunners are
> > addicted to punishment and immune to prevention. They would
> > rather have Harris and Klebold shoot up a school full of kids, and
> > then punish them, than to adopt reasonable and rational measures
> > designed to prevent the guns from getting into their hands.
> I assume you meant "can be argued". The problem I see is, who gets to draw up the list?
> (Hint: think "politicians".) We have your list above. If we add other peoples'
> categories, we would surely have to add members of the KKK, pro-lifers (no conflict there
> eh? :-), skinheads, etc. Probably anyone with a drug history, then anyone with a
> criminal record. Surely anyone who's advocated anarchy or lbertarianism. In fact, just
> to be safe, probably anyone who doesn't "need" one for their "official government
> duties", which brings us back to the present: the banners' stated goal of taking
> everyone's guns away.
Like I said; you can't argue against my list, so you build your own straw list to argue against and try to bulldoze a slippery slope between them. It does not work. My proposed laws are eminently reasonable, do not discriminate against any identifiable racial, sexual, ethnic or religious group, and you have no counter against them.
> Another thing: presumably convicted violent criminals are listed because you do not
> believe they are rehabilitated. The question here is the same as with Megan's law: if
> these people are still dangerous, why on earth are they being placed back into society?
> The question in my mind is not whether they should have guns, but how have we determined
> that they are (1) dangerous and (2) should be set free? Considering that lethal weapons
> are not hard to find (cars, bricks, knives, bats, crossbows, hammers, etc. etc.) I do not
> feel especially comforted even if they are prevented from obtaining guns (which they are
> not, regardless of the law).
You'd rather keep them min jail than deny them guns and give them a chance to prove themselves. All doing time proves is that they can survive our prison system (not in itself a sterling recommendation). They have proven that, given access to a free society that they can break the law and physically attack others; let them prove that they can abide by it and refrain from such actions. If, after a number of years, they wish to appeal for these rights to be restored, and after due consideration, are judged responsible enough to once again receive them, I have no problem with that. The same logic for abusers and the mentally ill; let's see first how well the psychiatric treatment or the anger control classes have worked in practice before we once again shove a gun in someone's fist.
> I apply precisely the same logic to wife/child abusers and the mentally ill.
> Children are an interesting topic. Like adults, some are eminently trusthworthy (I know
> several personally) and some are not (I know several personally). The gov't's own
> studies show that the rate of shootings (deliberate and accidental) committed with guns
> is far lower among children who have been trained in proper usage of firearms than it is
> among those who have not. I would tend towards a position of holding the parents
> responsible for their child committing a shooting; it might tend to increase the parents'
> motivation to properly train and educate their kids. Accrediting agencies offering
> courses may be another route to such education. (Also keep in mind that I am referring
> to actual children; I will not commit the gov't's distortion of including teenage
> gang-bangers as children for the purpose of skewing gun crime statistics.)
Then you are in favor of the Golden boy's NRA member father being jailed as a result of his son's homicidal schoolshooting spree? He took him to the NRA gun classes, you know.
> I mention all this mainly in an attempt to illustrate that "reasonable and rational" will
> be interepreted differently by different people, and no doubt get lost entirely (as is
> traditional) in the political process.
> If guns are generally available to law-abiding citizens, those who initiate violence
> against them, with or without guns, will find their numbers dwindling over time. A
> little process called natural selection. Society will become safer as result. I think
> that result, a safer society, is what most "gun nuts" are, and should be, focused on.
> Your tactic of ascribing evil motives to others does nothing to advance your argument
> rhetorically, and much to diminish it.
For most of our history, uncontrolled access to weapons has been the rule, rather than the exception. How do you then explain the rampant homicide occurring in our country? It seems that we're always breeding new killers to replace the old, and it would be better not to allow those who are identifiable as much more likely to murder the opportunity to gun down those who would not.
> Just as an exercise, the next time someone responds to a proposal by saying "I don't
> think it will work," try considering that perhaps they _actually don't think it will
> work_, rather than assuming they're looking for excuses to use their guns.
Well, let's put them to the pragmatic, experiential test. Opinions are like assholes; let's find out whose really stinks.
> - Steve