Better understanding an anti (my brother in this case)


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.cheese.
January 25, 2008, 12:52 AM
I've made some observations that may be interesting to some here.

My brother is an interesting individual. On one hand, he's very intelligent, has a massive vocabularly, top-notch writing skills, is very socially involved, and attends one of the top universities in the country. He happens to also be liberal (extremely so), atheist (raised Jewish - not that his being atheist is important, but it fits an existing stereotype), and very anti-gun.

He has been living in San Fran for several years now and is now home to take a semester off to study for the LSAT.

Last time he was home, he got into a massive argument with me over my purchasing at the time an AR15.

He has never actually seen either of my ARs since then.

The argument was so massive that it went into other areas unrelated to guns that were very personal and we both left things on very bad terms and didn't speak for 6 months.

Now that he's home, things are definitely strained again now since we're both in our parents' home. He's taking the semester off to take the LSAT, and I just took the LSAT and am waiting to hear back from law schools about whether I got in or not. I moved in with my folks to save some cash in the meantime as school is expensive as you all know.

Now to the meat and potatoes of my points.

The other night he mentioned in the car that he didn't trust the police to protect him. I told him that while I imagine most have good intentions, I don't trust the police either to protect me. I pointed out that it is interesting that we both are aware of the same problem, yet we respond very differently. He does nothing, while I actively carry to protect myself. He said, "Carrying a weapon implies that you feel you need to protect yourself from somebody." - to which I replied, "Not somebody in particular, but I do feel it is wise to be ready in case I should need to protect myself from somebody. The potential is there for the need to arise." He told me he disagreed and never feels that he is in any danger.

I dropped the point right there to avoid getting into another big argument, but took note of this interesting point. I had never thought of this being a potential argument, as flawed as it is. Anybody who watches the news enough, reads the paper, or just plain gets around enough that they see things happen knows that bad stuff happens.... and some of it is REALLY bad! To think that nothing happens is naive to say the least. In fact when I asked my mother if she felt the same way the other day, she told me she did. She later came home to exclaim that she had witnessed a carjacking that day. Needless to say, she changed her mind.

This is just an interesting note to take. I don't think enough Xanax exists in the world to make me feel 100% comfortable all day long like that as though there is NO chance anything could ever happen. I thought about this for a little while and just how odd it is. No wonder he feels it is absurd to have guns, because to him anybody who has a gun isn't protecting themselves from anybody (as there is nobody to protect themselves from), but rather they/we are the problem itself.

The second thing that I took notice of was that he handed me that Fred Grimm article from the Miami Herald the other day (search THR for a copy). He skimmed it and thought I'd agree. I obviously didn't. Somehow in our talking about the issue, he mentioned that AK47s are illegal. I told him that this was pure BS, and I could buy one quite easily, and almost did several months ago, it's newly manufactured or converted fully automatic AKs that are illegal, and that you can even buy fully automatic guns still legally with a tax stamp.

The third thing I have noticed is that when it comes to these issues, he refuses to hear facts. When I point him in the direction of factual information, he says that he doesn't care..... which obviously is not true given his strong anti position on this. You can't hate something so much, and not care about it at the same time. I think it's that he, along with many other antis, subconsciously doesn't want to hear the facts because if they knew them, and continued to spout falsities, they would transition from being simply naive as to the facts, to lying.

The last thing I think is interesting, is that on his LSAT prep, he has an odd weak point. My cousin and myself both were very strong (at least in prep) with our logical reasoning sections. I am very pro-gun, and my cousin is pro-gun with borderline opinions on certain gun related topics that often go the way of pro-gunners when he hears both sides of the argument finally.

My brother on the other hand is struggling with the logical reasoning section. From what I understand, for somebody to have such strong verbal and writing ability as he has, and yet be so weak on the logical reasoning section of the LSAT, is unusual. Upon talking to him about it (he consults me b/c it was my strong section), it seems his primary issue is actually in understanding the logic involved, or the progression of the argument.

Questions that he has particular trouble with are "Method of argument" questions - "Point at issue" questions (odd)... anything with formal logic.... "Assumption" questions (big time), and perhaps as bad as anything with formal logic are "paradox" questions.

This may mean nothing at all..... I will grant him that because he is a better test taker, he will still likely end up with a better score on test day than I got.

I just thought these points were worthy of noting and decided to post them. Maybe it can help understand some of the disconnects that exist between us and the antis. Maybe not.

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larry_minn
January 25, 2008, 01:11 AM
If he refuses to look at facts shown in a simple format............


Lets just say he is your brother.

IdaReggaeMon
January 25, 2008, 01:24 AM
It's interesting that you two could be brothers. Usually, when someone speaks of a close family member who holds such opposite views towards guns, they speak of their brother in-law.

In any case, I think you should offer to take him shooting to take his mind off his studies for a few hours. This could break the ice and lead to a deeper discussion which would allow you both to understand the other's point of view better.

Just Jim
January 25, 2008, 01:24 AM
Not every person is born to be logical. Matter of fact few people can develope those skills and it is obvious by our politicions. We are all different.

In the animal world those who won't fight get eaten. Well in mans world your not going to get eaten but you can be murdered. Is it natural selection that keeps a man where he won't learn to defend himself? The strong do survive but it takes a smart person too.

Maybe that is the link with your brother. Could be by natures selection he just can't piece things together to save his own life should it come to that. The history books are full of the millions that died without lifting a finger in their own defense in WWII.

Some people will never carry a gun even if it kills them to do without one. They won't learn to defend themselves and depend on others for their safety. It is their choice to live like that, but it pains me they want the rest of us to live like the fools they are.

No offense intended of course

jj

Deamon
January 25, 2008, 01:26 AM
I think you pointed out a problem with a lot of anti's. They are intelligent but are in dear lacking of logic. They see theres a problem and come up with one solution and do their best to get it implemented without thinking of the effects it will actually have versus what they intend it to have.

Anti's want to make the world a safer place to live, they do this by believing that if you take guns away from people or make registration etc etc that EVERYONE will abide by the knew rules.

The problem is they don't think through enough to realise that Cornholio Crackhead who doesn't care about anything the government tells him to do. And won't register or hand over or anything like that. They fail to realise that the only people who would turn in guns, would be law abiding people because they don't want to be criminals.

And even in a hypothetical situation where every last gun was collected and destroyed within the border of the US, illegal guns would flow in. And because at this point criminals would be going for broke to get guns, they would worry about things like semiautomatic versus automatic. I garantee those 20$ AKs you hear about in Afganistan and Pakistan would flood our streets in no time. Through the Gulf, through the borders. All along the same routes that all the coke comes in.

This isn't England, we aren't a country the size of Illinois (?), America is massive. Thousands upon thousands of miles of border, uncountable hiding locations for drugs, weapons, and ammunition.

And then if you were to close the borders completely. Steel is plentiful, tubing, springs, angle iron, lead, charcoal, saltpeter, sulfur, fulminate. You give any moderately intelligent person one week with the right knowledge. And they'll have a gun for next to nothing.

It's an impossible task. There will ALWAYS be guns. The best we can hope for is to have them too. So when Cornholio Crackhead kicks in your door looking for cash for his fix sticking a junkyard special zip gun to your head, you've got something better than Dial-a-Prayer.

Big Boomer
January 25, 2008, 01:34 AM
Well, I don't know what to tell you about your brother; however, I can easily foresee who will be making partner first ;)

A lawyer that can't argue logically is like an unloaded gun, purely a paperweight.

chris in va
January 25, 2008, 03:48 AM
because to him anybody who has a gun isn't protecting themselves from anybody (as there is nobody to protect themselves from), but rather they/we are the problem itself.

That's an amazing way to look at it. They don't see there's a threat, so anyone carrying suddenly becomes the threat. Hmm.

BTW anti's that refuse to even try out a firearm base their thought processes on feelings, not facts. Someone on here pointed out any discussions with an anti should be emotionally based.

Example. Instead of "2.5 million crimes are thwarted yearly by firearms", say "Last week an old lady was getting out of her car at WalMart to buy what groceries she could with her meager SS check and a drugged out junkie slashed her with a kitchen knife trying to steal what little money she had left from her heating bills. The guy is still at large, roaming the streets as we speak."

See? It's all how you present it.:scrutiny:

BTW I didn't entirely make that up. In my town we've had a couple holdups, one in the WM parking lot.

mike101
January 25, 2008, 06:02 AM
Your brother sounds like a Brady Campaigner waiting to happen. They don't care about facts either. Nor do they deal in logic (this allows them to disregard facts). When all else fails, they just lie.

Standing Wolf
January 25, 2008, 06:28 AM
He said, "Carrying a weapon implies that you feel you need to protect yourself from somebody." - to which I replied, "Not somebody in particular, but I do feel it is wise to be ready in case I should need to protect myself from somebody. The potential is there for the need to arise." He told me he disagreed and never feels that he is in any danger.

Some people persuade themselves it can't happen to them. The predators count on that attitude.

SDC
January 25, 2008, 06:43 AM
He said, "Carrying a weapon implies that you feel you need to protect yourself from somebody."

No more than owning a fire extinguisher implies that you think someone is trying to set fire to your home; it is merely a reasonable precaution to take.

critter
January 25, 2008, 08:31 AM
Several of you have made a point that I discovered a long time ago. I am a former educator (retired back when school was school!). There are three types of folks. There are (1) logical folks, (2) illogical folks-who use FLAWED logic, and (3) A-logical folks-who do not use, can not use and do not even understand what logic is nor can they recognize it.

Logical folks are most of us.
Illogical folks CAN be 'fixed' by feeding them correct facts and by pointing out and fixing their flawed logic.
A-logical folks are the ones for which the term "don't try to teach a pig to sing. You waste your time and annoy the pig". They ARE NOT FIXABLE. They do not understand logic, can not learn it, won't try and never get over it. In a 'logical' discussion, they resort to LOUD TALKING, LOTS of talking, tears and emotion, nasty names, sulling up, putting down the character of their opponents, etc. DO NOT waste your time with them! There is no cure!

oldgold
January 25, 2008, 08:49 AM
Interesting. You have a good point that I just never put together. I've got two sisters who are both ant's. Both are very intelligent but neither one has any logic abilities. Growing up games and puzzles that required logic were a mystery to them.

It always baffled me that they are so anti when we all grew up on the farm where guns and hunting were normal. Now I think I see why. I gotta go think this out.....logically.

chieftain
January 25, 2008, 08:56 AM
My father who was a Mechanical Engineer, plant manager, head of manufacturing for Computer peripherals in the early 50's through the late 80's, used to say:

Many people are simply, "Unprejudiced by Facts."

Go figure.

Fred

Deanimator
January 25, 2008, 09:01 AM
You might want to point out the latest news on the family in Connecticut who were slaughtered recently by home invaders. Apparently, the cops sat in front of the house, waiting for a SWAT team, while the family was being burned to death (minus the father, who survived).

I have a basic principle in life: If you can't or won't defend yourself, it's unlikely that anyone else will defend you. The intentions of the police are a crapshoot, depending upon where you live. Their actual abilities are pretty consistent. It's pretty much a 100% certainty that they're not going to respond quickly enough to save you from an immediately life threatening attack, no matter how much they want to.

XDKingslayer
January 25, 2008, 10:14 AM
From what I understand, for somebody to have such strong verbal and writing ability as he has, and yet be so weak on the logical reasoning section of the LSAT, is unusual.

I don't think it's unusual at all.

A lot of book smart people don't have a drop of common sense. The logical reasoning part of the LSAT is just that, common sense.

His brain works different. To solve a problem he has to have all the information in order to solve that problem. People with common sense don't. That's exactly why he doesn't agree with you on self defence even though you both agree the police can't protect you.

Your common sense and logical reasoning says it could happen. His booksmart brain won't register it until it happens to him.

That's also why he's a better test taker. His brain can retain the information better because it doesn't question it. It simply records it. The information exists simply because the book said so. Your brain on the other hand questions, suspects, and processes everything that comes in and stuff gets lost on the way. It's too busy drawing the line and understanding the route from A to B, how A and B came to exist, and understanding the relationship between A and B, while his brain simply acknowledges A and B because the book said so.

RoadkingLarry
January 25, 2008, 10:24 AM
So, can we boil this down to - Antis have a mental abberation?

:)

longrifleman
January 25, 2008, 10:41 AM
"Carrying a weapon implies that you feel you need to protect yourself from somebody." - to which I replied, "Not somebody in particular, but I do feel it is wise to be ready in case I should need to protect myself from somebody

I've seen "limited" success using analogies to get people started thinking. Does your brother carry jumper cables, tow ropes, first aid kit, flashlight in his car? Any kind of insurance? Does he keep cash on hand? (Probably not, if he is a college student:D.)

I hope your brother is capable of learning by observing other people, and doesn't learn the lesson the hard way. Unfortunately it could be the last lesson he learns.

Marlin 45 carbine
January 25, 2008, 10:42 AM
interesting post and I'm compelled to add to it since I have 5 sisters. my mom (now 85) was an active deer hunter with my dad and owned a Marlin 30-30 (took several good bucks also) so my sisters grew up in a hunting home but never participated.
the oldest has the opinion that handguns are sort of a 'neccesary evil' and is pretty much 'anti-assault weapon' despite my attempts to convince her to the contrary.
next older unfortunately is very good friends with who else but Wayne LaPiere's ex. altho her friend has never really railed against Wayne evidently he is fairly prominent on her (both of them) list of *&%@ subjects. my sis isn't really anti-hunting and enjoys venison I supply but she is definitely anti-pistol and 'AW'.
next older - surprise - married a fairly active hunter who was a former Navy career P.O. and when he was stationed in Europe she came in second there in the women's shotgun disicpline of some sort, can't recollect what. she has a caseful of trophies. she's non-commental on pistols and 'AW's' but is strongly supportive of hunting and the guns involved in such even pistols and also any target guns pistols included. no longer shoots due to severe arthritis.
next younger is pretty much an 'anti' even tho she devours the venison I supply w/gusto and enjoys plinking with my .22 revolver. just won't listen to reason about S-D pistols and 'AW's'. she's a grad of a liberal college and has no friends either male or female involved in shooting sports. 2 of the 3 daughters are anti's - one very much so.
youngest is admin in a liberal college and somewhat 'anti' but has enjoyed plinking with my .22 revolver and even bought herself a nice .25 auto 'just in case'. her son is a grad of said college and is pretty much pro-gun, has .22 rifle and .20 ga. still she supports 'anti' politicians and is suspicious of 'AW's' and S-D pistols. fairly supportive of hunters and again enjoys venison and turkey I supply.
I guess I should make a point and say that despite the upbringing in a fairly active-hunting home this does not make a gaurantee of pro-2nd amend views. surprising that one of the 'anti's' should enjoy plinking w/my .22 revolver and hold such views tho.

Dorryn
January 25, 2008, 10:45 AM
If you never feel in danger then you dont need cops.

LT1coupe
January 25, 2008, 10:59 AM
Something I was sent:

Forgive me, for I have sinned.
An About Face After Being Saved by a Gun Owner

a letter to the editor
mailed to
www.keepandbeararms.comI am one of those people who you loathe. One of those invisible people who come into your living room without asking your permission. One of those people who follow you while you shop, and make it harder for you to make legal purchases. One of those people who try and tell you how to raise your children, as if you don't know how. One of those who gives ratings to stations that promote our demise as a free nation. I am your enemy. Or at least I was.

I followed it all, all of the propaganda, all of the hoopla. Believed it too. Believed that leaving my house was more dangerous than being in a war. At any given moment one of you evil gun owners would open fire on me. I saw the NRA stickers, the Gun owners of America stickers on the cars that passed, and I thought you were all fools. I did everything in my power financially to try and help more laws pass that would prevent you from owning guns. I wholeheartedly believed that only the Police, and Military should have guns. Every time I heard of a gang shooting, or other criminal act committed with a gun, I honestly believed that if we could curtail the legal sale of guns, we could make a difference.

Boy was I wrong.

I have children, three actually, and to me the only thing more important than raising them properly, was seeing that they aren't hurt in anyway. I wanted to ban guns, save my children, save all children. No child should have to be part of any kind of death, especially the kind that involves being shot. I gave money to all of the anti gun organizations I could think of, went to the "Million" Mom March, even looked at Rosie when she spoke, and actually admire her. Brought the kids as well, and even yelled some not so nice things to those other marchers. I'm sure some of you know who I refer to.

I was on my way back from the march, on my way back to Connecticut, when I stopped off of the highway at a rest stop by one of those McDonalds they have off I-95. By this time I had dropped off two of my kids with their father, and only had my little one with me. I went into the restroom with her, and on my way out noticed two men hanging out by my car. There were only two other cars in the lot at the time that were anywhere near my vehicle. I immediately felt threatened by their demeanor, but continued on to my car. The smaller of the two approached me with a knife as I was about to open the door to put my child in her car seat. He yelled at me to get in the back of the car, they were taking me for a little ride. I obviously told them to just take my keys, they could have the car, but they insisted I get in the back. I then heard a man yelling something I don't quite recall, and saw him running towards me with a gun in his hand. The two men vanished into their car, and sped away. I stood there frozen in time, and by the time the gentleman with the gun got to me I just broke down and cried.

To make a long story short, you were all right, and I'm sorry. This man with a gun saved me, and I just keep thinking if I had gotten my wish and guns were banned, there is no telling where I'd be, and what would've happened to my daughter. The only regret I have is not getting the man's phone number who saved my life. I thanked him over and over again, and told him that he saved me, but he calmly said to me something I'd never forget. He said "That's what people like me are here for Ms., and I'm happy to have been able to help."

"That's what people like me are here for," those words keep on running through my head everyday. Maybe this gentleman by some chance is part of your group, and will read my message. If he does I would just like to say something to him, and to everyone else reading this note.

Thank you for saving my life, and to the rest of you thank you for fighting for this man's right to protect me and my child. Tell him for me that I will no longer be part of the group who invades his home, and tries to tell him how to store his guns. Tell him I will never be part of any group who tries to make it impossible for him to buy his tool he used to save me. And tell him I will never again tell him how to raise his children properly, because obviously I was oblivious to the fact that responsible people such as him know how to raise their children better than I do. I did rectify that situation the other day; I bought a shotgun for home protection, and am in the process of getting my concealed permit. Next time I will be ready to defend myself, or others for that matter. Some of my friends think I'm crazy, but they try their best to understand. I just tell them that as soon as their child's life is put in jeopardy by some criminal with a weapon that they will understand, but until then don't tell me how to live my life. I've lost some friends, but surprisingly most of them understand. If not for this man I could very easily have been killed or raped, and my child could've been taken from me, so once more I need to say thanks for saving me, and with all sincerity to the rest of you, forgive me, for I have sinned.

.cheese.
January 25, 2008, 11:09 AM
Does your brother carry jumper cables, tow ropes, first aid kit, flashlight in his car? Any kind of insurance? Does he keep cash on hand?

In order:

No jumper cables (doesn't own any either) - my dad is the only other one to own a set other than myself

No

No (I'm the only one in the family who has ever taken the time to build a real first aid kit - my folks own a half a dozen bandaids and that's it)

Negative on the flashlight in his car or home. He doesn't own one of those either.

He has health insurance, dental insurance, and car insurance, none of which he purchased himself though (done through the family).

I don't know if he carries cash.

Also, one more thing I found interesting that I forgot to mention.

Like I said, he's a smart kid in a lot of ways, and he claims that he is heavily involved in keeping up with politics..... but the other day when I asked him if he been watching the debates, he said, "No." - so I asked if he's been checking out the online records of the candidates views on various issues (such as their voting record if applicable, or laws they've signed into existence if applicable, or quotes that hint at their position on things). Again - "No." So I asked where he gets his information from. He told me, "I read the New York Times, that gives me all the information I need, plus I don't really care who wins. It's all about the party vote in my opinion. So long as a democrat wins, I'm happy."

I was kind of stunned. What is this, freaking football? A team sport? He's getting his information from a biased source and doesn't care about individual candidates? Weird.

Again, this just seemed odd to me, and I might have looked too far into it.

.cheese.
January 25, 2008, 11:12 AM
wow.... that's a great letter LT1coupe.

Just Jim
January 25, 2008, 11:15 AM
Sounds like he is disconected from real life. Some people live very happy lives that way, untill life gets a real hold on them.

jim

RKBABob
January 25, 2008, 11:27 AM
My brother on the other hand is struggling with the logical reasoning section. From what I understand, for somebody to have such strong verbal and writing ability as he has, and yet be so weak on the logical reasoning section of the LSAT, is unusual. Upon talking to him about it (he consults me b/c it was my strong section), it seems his primary issue is actually in understanding the logic involved, or the progression of the argument.I've theorized at great length about the differences in brain function among different people. I, like you, am a logical thinker... so it shouldn't be a suprise that I try figure out how things work, including people. Here is my amateur pshchological analisis, based on my limited study of the subject:

[FREUD MODE]
Your brother, and people like him, have what I like to call a "knowledge dump" for a brain. They are extremely good at memorizing things. Bits and pieces, such as dates, names, and extensive vocabularies get dumped in, and can be pulled back out when needed. However, very little processing goes on at the "knowledge dump." They think in soundbites, looking to data that was given to them in the past for answers to a question presented to them in the present. They may do well in academic tests, due to their memorization abilities.

People with strong logic and reasoning skills, however, are sometimes horrible at memorization and vocabulary. Trivial pieces of information, such as dates and names, are often discarded by their minds as being irrelevant to understanding the why and how of the situation being discussed. Logical thinkers may actually do poorly in academic tests, due to poor memorization, and their tendency to dismiss concepts which they don't understand. Logical thinkers think in concepts... raw statistics are useless to them.

Here's where I think these differences come into play:

A "knowledge dump" brained person may have difficulty believing in a higher power, since this is conceptual thinking. They may be able to memorize the doctrine of entire religions, but it makes no sense to them. They need facts and figures presented to them to base their beliefs on. Evolution may appeal to their way of thinking, since there's lots of numbers and dates and fossil records. How chemicals could suddenly become alive, then evolve into humans, fish, birds and insects doesn't matter to them. They don't think about "how."

Logical thinkers, on the other hand, will examine the probability of everything in nature occuring by chance. There must be an exact theory... one that the logical thinker can replay in his mind, and see exactly how it works. Logical thinkers gravitate toward religion since it presents a workable theory. It answers the logical thinker's need to know "how."

"Knowledge dump" people tend to come up with simple solutions to complex problems... though those solutions may not actually work. Liberalism appeals to them, because it offers simple solutions. If the issue is poverty, the simple solution is to take money from the wealthy and give it to them. They may not consider what effects removing this money from the free market may have. They will, of course, feel more comfortable with the solution if it is presented with statistics, facts and figures.

Logical thinkers tend to be more conservative/libertarian. When encountered with the same issue of poverty, a logical thinker will look to the individual choices that those in poverty have made, and attempt to determine a cause. They will also look to the local ecomomy, education levels, and opportunity available to them. Eventually, the logical thinker will come up with a 10 year plan to improve the local economy by attracting private industry, while also encouraging those who need it to take job training. The logical thinker probably won't have a lot of statistics to back up his position, since they are unimportant to the concept he has created.

The "knowledge dump" minded person may base a support of gun control on all the statistics they have heard. Each time they read of a gun crime, it registers as another statistic pointing to their "guns are bad" conclusion. They may be unable to consider that they could be the victim of a crime, since there was no past data or experience to point them toward that conclusion. They do not plan ahead for the unexpected, as this would involve theories and concepts. Statistics tell the "knowledge dump" that guns are dangerous... they know exactly how many people accidentally shoot themselves every year. They can not, however, understand how proper gun handling can make firearms owners safe.

A logical thinker realizes that guns are inanimate objects. He can clearly understand the concept of a criminal using whatever is available to him to commit his crimes. The logical thinker can come up with 20 hypothetical situations in which they may be the victim of a crime, and at least as many responses they could employ. They need not have been a victim in the past in order to grasp the concept that they are a potential victim right now. Logical thinkers know very well that any mechanical device, even one designed to be dangerous, can be operated safely if a few simple rules are followed.
[/FREUD MODE]

The only way to get through to those "knowledge dump" people is by bombarding them with figures and statistics. How many times are firearms used in self defense? How often do criminals ignore gun laws? What percentage of the population is a victim of violent crime each year? How often do the police arrive too late? How many American gun owners didn't shoot themselves this year? How many CCW holders haven't commited a crime with their sidearm?

the above is an amateur analisis of personality types... feel free to disagree all you want. No flames, please.



By the way, what is your brother majoring in?

cornman
January 25, 2008, 11:30 AM
One way to look at things is that too many people are messed up, so why do we want these people to be able to get guns? People who do not like guns, or don't feel comfortable with them would rather live in a society where they do not exist. Makes perfect sense to me. There really is no reason for all these semi auto weopons other than people like them like people like muscle cars etc.

Werewolf
January 25, 2008, 11:41 AM
To make a long story short, you were all right, and I'm sorry. This man with a gun saved me, and I just keep thinking if I had gotten my wish and guns were banned, there is no telling where I'd be, and what would've happened to my daughter. The only regret I have is not getting the man's phone number who saved my life. I thanked him over and over again, and told him that he saved me, but he calmly said to me something I'd never forget. He said "That's what people like me are here for Ms., and I'm happy to have been able to help."

I hope that tale is true - I really do.

But the cynic in me says it isn't. Too pat, too perfect, too everything to be true.

A tale used to sum up our position regarding lawfully armed citizens and make a point.

But TRUE????

Sadly - probably not.

Just Jim
January 25, 2008, 11:42 AM
One way to look at things is that too many people are messed up, so why do we want these people to be able to get guns? People who do not like guns, or don't feel comfortable with them would rather live in a society where they do not exist. Makes perfect sense to me. There really is no reason for all these semi auto weopons other than people like them like people like muscle cars etc.

Exactly the way his brother thinks:banghead: it's allright though you are on the road to recovery, The High Road.

jj

Werewolf
January 25, 2008, 11:48 AM
My brother on the other hand is struggling with the logical reasoning section. From what I understand, for somebody to have such strong verbal and writing ability as he has, and yet be so weak on the logical reasoning section of the LSAT, is unusual. Not unusual at all.

Verbal skills and logical reasoning ability are controlled by different sides of the brain. Ask folks who've taken the SAT's what their math and verbal scores were as a check. You'll find not a few that score high in one and low in the other.

As others have said though without an ability to logically analyze problems your brother will not make a very good lawyer. Steer him to another profession if you can - something like college professor, artist, journalist (they haven't needed to be logical for years), photographer etc...

Baba Louie
January 25, 2008, 11:52 AM
People who do not like guns, or don't feel comfortable with them would rather live in a society where they do not exist.But they DO exist. Even in political climates where they are outlawed, firearms can be found.

Just as, Criminals exist. Even when outlawed, they can be found.

And worst case scenario, tyrannical governments exist. Unless there is some form of checks and balances at the 'grass-roots' level, coupled of course, with enough political savvy to keep gov't honest... enough and not resorting to violent political posturing or action. Which is sorta like keeping some type of device near you to keep criminals honest... or at least at bay.

But all that presupposes a mind logical enough to know that evil and corruption lurk in the hearts of some.

TargetTerror
January 25, 2008, 12:40 PM
The point about your brother not ever feeling in danger is an interesting one. Despite all that we see on the news, and all that we read about on these gun boards, there are countless communities across the country where there is virtually no chance of becoming a victim. I was fortunate enough to grow up in a wealthy suburb outside of Boston. There was 1 murder in our town during my childhood, and it was huge news throughout the entire area because there are never any murders in these suburbs. Frankly, there are numerous other things to worry about it my home town than being attacked by a bad guy.

BUT, what people living in such communities fail to appreciate is that their situation is unique. They are fortunate to live in safe communities. You need to get them to picture what it is like for a law-abiding person living in the heart of Dorcheste in Boston, South Central LA, or DC. Get them to realize what it is like to have a an ex swear to kill you, and then have the police tell you that they cannot do anything to protect you.

arflattop
January 25, 2008, 01:22 PM
.cheese, I also have a brother who is an anti. He, too, is extremely intelligent, but, unlike yours, logic is his forte. He is a mathematician and loves games of logic, etc. The only factor that I can point to that separates his belief and mine is that he has been a high school teacher all his life (he is now retired at 61). He was even beaten up (not badly) by some students at his school -- and rescued by some students at his school. His thnking seems to stop when the subject of firearms ownership arises, i.e., children are hurt by firearms, so ownership is bad and must be stopped. He's not able to continue the thought process beyond that, although on other topics he is quite a deep thinker. Unfortunately this has been passed down to his three children. Amazing how different siblings raised in the same place and time, raised by the same parents can be so different...............

rainbowbob
January 25, 2008, 02:39 PM
I too have an intelligent, accomplished, older brother who I dearly love. He is a judge who presides in juvenile and mental illness courts, and is a thoughtful and compassionate jurist. He is also anti-gun. Of course, he sees juveniles and mentally ill people after they get in trouble with guns, so that must certainly play a part in his position. But he had developed a pacifist philosophy way back in the 60’s. His intent then was to avoid the draft, but being a sincere and thoughtful person who prides himself on his integrity – I think he was compelled to convince himself that his pacifism was genuine. I believe that to this day, this philosophy remains in tact in order to preserve his perception of his own sincerity.

Hell – I’ll admit it here – I didn’t want to get drafted back then, and would have probably done just about anything to avoid it if I hadn’t received a high lottery number. But even then I realized that I simply could not go through the mental gymnastics involved in trying to convince myself, or the draft board, that I was a pacifist.

Although he and I have not recently engaged in a debate on the subject of self-defense, I have told him I would like to. As a logical-minded person, I am interested in hearing the arguments of people who sincerely believe in a point of view – even if - especially if – it doesn’t agree with mine. Opposing arguments presented with all due civility are a whetstone for the intellect and may effectively sharpen one’s own position. That, of course, requires two intelligent and civil people willing to open their minds and listen carefully to the other’s arguments.

Recently, my brother’s position on the issue of self-defense worked in my favor. We were cleaning out my Uncle’s apartment and found a beautiful Chief’s Special (.38 snubby). He and his wife were shocked and even a little panicky – but I assured them I would take care of it (heh-heh!).

keeleon
January 25, 2008, 06:56 PM
RKBABob

That is actually a very profound way of looking at things. I always used to equate the differences being because some people think about things logically, and some people only interpret things through emotion. I never really thought about the fact that someone just might not "get it" without hard facts behind it.

My biggest problem with "smart antis" is when they don't want anyone to have guns. I am fine if they want to be a pacifist and they don't like them personally for whatever reasons. But, why should every other law abiding citizen not be able to do something they want without hurting others? Where does it stop?

I don't like drinking, I think it should be banned. More people are killed every year by drunk drivers, then by assault weapons every year (don't have stats in front of me, and while, I am sure I could say "guns" I'll just stick to a known fact) What's that? It was banned? But people still got it? How is that possible, it was illegal? But nobody died of alcohol poisoning or drunken driving during prohibition right? Well that's just ridiculous, alcohol was illegal, so you are just making up statistics to get it legal again, so that you and your friends can go on a wild drinking spree and run over homeless people.

chieftain
January 25, 2008, 08:25 PM
look, when discussing gun control you are dealing with primal forces of fear, hate, cowardice, and deniel. There may be more, but for now that will do.

People cover their fear and cowardice with what they see as logic or deniel. Frankly many who do go forth armed do too.

And because emotion is the motivator, logic isn't to important to them. Frankly 80% of those armed will 'freeze' the first time they face the elephant. That is normal, and the percentage is about what I estimated the FNG in Vietnam did in their first firefight. They ususally got over their initial shock and got in the fight.

Now make that first firefight in a personal defense situation, and there is no one to cover you while you get out of your initial shock, and bang, you are now an official statistic.

Usually the more macho the person, the MORE likely they are libel to freeze for those first critical seconds. This isn't about cowardice or anything else. It is much more about shock. There is a reason experience is so important in life and death situations.

Same with the Anti's. They frankly understand a fear that shock. many of them would fight like tigers, if they knew how.

You will notice that most anti's don't have any other means of defense either. And don't want you to have any other too. No pepper spray, no knife, no 'chucks etc. Anything that would give you an advantage.

They think if they disarm every one of everything, they will be safer. This is fear/cowardice 101. No argument will succeed.

A reason why, if many ant'si survive an attack, they often become very pro self defense. Why, because their way didn't do them any good. Most are made aware of how wrong they were. Some just run deeper into the fear/cowardice/deniel.

Go figure.

Fred

Pilgrim
January 25, 2008, 09:27 PM
If you never feel in danger then you dont need cops.
Could one use that position to get a reduction in local taxes that go to law enforcement?

Pilgrim

whuffines
January 25, 2008, 09:36 PM
Many good points made!
I am in the middle of a good book at the moment:_Fooled by Randomness_ by Nassim Nicholas Taleb. He is an options trader that examines the failures of reasoning that we make based on our biological wiring. Humans assess risks by emotional impact. What we fear or love has greater decision making impact because it is more 'emotionally present' for us.

I was talking to a friend of mine that is as overweight as I have been. We both have the knowledge of risk related to heart attack with weight and exercise. When he had bypass surgery, the risk that had been theoretical became very real! He was able to assess the clear and present danger of lifestyle with much more impact.

Making decisions about risk, according to the research, involves the imagination of the risk and it's emotional impact. Think about the folks in Podunk, Iowa that considered buying drugs for anthrax to avoid the terrorist threat.

Here is where the anti gun crowd is able to portray the risk of guns. By constantly appealing to emotion for the risk of guns to family, children and neighbors as well as playing on the unrealistic images in movies and TV, they are able to appeal to the emotional basis for assessing risk. We are much more able to imagine things with which we are familiar than things that are outside of our experience. The common soccermom experience is not inclusive of violence and crime. It does have basis for kids finding ways to get into what they shouldn't. It does have a basis for a stable, safe life without physical danger.

In my experience, the folks that I know that are gun toters have had a broader, deeper experience set to draw upon. The anti-gun crowd, in general, have an emotional base that makes judgments from a small set of experience. Anti-gun folks have led a more 'sheltered' existence that hasn't exposed them to the real possibilities of bad guys. Take the example of a friend from high school. He worked for his family business (drugstore) and as a life guard. I worked construction, pipeline, oil field and off shore. I have seen many more examples of people that are ready and willing to use force to convince others to do what they want. (I doubt my buddy ever had the head life guard explain it was time to get back to work with an offer to kick his behind up between his shoulder blades.) I have a better experience set to understand the need for protection than he does. Add the emotional impacts of what he can imagine from the anti-gun propaganda to his lack of experience and he sees guns as an evil to be avoided as opposed to a tool for protection.

In short, the emotional assessment of risks leads them to faulty conclusions.

fred in nc
January 26, 2008, 10:40 PM
If this were my brother - and of course assuming that for many other reasons I valued the relationship with him in spite of the disagreement - I believe I would just let the whole discussion go. You aren't going to change his mind and he won't change yours.

CrawdaddyJim
January 26, 2008, 10:53 PM
Who says there is no such thing as intelligent design! :D

A sheepdog born into a family of sheep. You won't change their perceptions through logical argument or discourse. Hopefully they won't ever experience a life altering event. If they do, they will have you to help them understand it and get past it. Good luck to you.

kentucky bucky
January 26, 2008, 11:02 PM
I have know several very intelligent people that had very little, if any, common sense or practical knowledge. They were very much at home in the college classroom, but very lost in the real world. The sad thing is that folks like this often become professors and pass on their warped reality to students. Many times they are very impressed with themselves.:rolleyes:

I just got off the phone with one.:banghead:

hockeybum
January 26, 2008, 11:14 PM
yeah, sounds kinda like what my real dad says about guns. he hates guns but wants to go hunting :confused: i've given up arguing. same with the anti's at my school, they just ignore the facts

although i did convince my government teacher that guns can be good

BigO01
January 26, 2008, 11:56 PM
The other night he mentioned in the car that he didn't trust the police to protect him.

This was the crack in his position that you should have jumped on and turned into an open wound .

You say he then engaged you in an anti CCW conversation after telling you this .

You should have strongly reminded him what he had said and then questioned him HARD as to why he thought that and brought the subject up .

If he has nothing to ever fear in life why is he worried about trusting some 1 to protect him ?

You say your family is Jewish , does it seem this would be obvious to someone if they knew your name ?

If so you could try pointing out to him that this alone makes him a target of certain zealots that exist in the world .

Point out to him some of the most deadly killers are serial killers and they instinctively look for much weaker people such as he for a target .

It sounds as though he lives in constant condition White and will one day be the victim because of it .

Foosinho
January 27, 2008, 01:00 AM
The other night he mentioned in the car that he didn't trust the police to protect him. I told him that while I imagine most have good intentions, I don't trust the police either to protect me. I pointed out that it is interesting that we both are aware of the same problem, yet we respond very differently. He does nothing, while I actively carry to protect myself. He said, "Carrying a weapon implies that you feel you need to protect yourself from somebody." - to which I replied, "Not somebody in particular, but I do feel it is wise to be ready in case I should need to protect myself from somebody. The potential is there for the need to arise." He told me he disagreed and never feels that he is in any danger.

I dropped the point right there to avoid getting into another big argument, but took note of this interesting point. I had never thought of this being a potential argument, as flawed as it is. Anybody who watches the news enough, reads the paper, or just plain gets around enough that they see things happen knows that bad stuff happens.... and some of it is REALLY bad! To think that nothing happens is naive to say the least.
I'd just like to point out that the two things I've marked in bold are not the same thing. In fact, the overwhelming majority (70%) of murders are not random acts of violence. So if your brother is not participating in illicit activities or doesn't have an intense personal conflict, feeling that he is never in danger is an entirely logical position. Statistically speaking, it's incredibly unlikely that he'll be a victim of violent crime; in fact, IIRC he's more likely to die in a fire than be killed in a random murder.

And, of course, like someone mentioned earlier, the violent crime rate is incredibly dependent on where you live. So if your brother lives in a nice neighborhood, he might be more likely to be struck by lightning.

Me, I live in a nice neighborhood, and don't run in a bad crowd. But the Boy Scout lesson of "being prepared" kinda stuck. So I own a gun. And I lock my doors and windows. And I practice good OpSec. But if I were a gamblin' man, I'd be willing to lay a giant sum of money down that I'd never discharge any firearm in defense in my entire life.

zinj
January 27, 2008, 01:44 AM
Nice neighborhoods can turn bad pretty quick, especially when basic services have been cut off for a week.

doc2rn
January 27, 2008, 02:08 AM
Show him the video of the lady who went into a Tx diner and lost her mom and dad on you tube. She went before the HoR hearing before the AWB. She puts alot of things out there better than I could.

Bad Voodoo
January 27, 2008, 02:12 AM
He has been living in San Fran for several years now

Say no more...




;)

Wes Janson
January 27, 2008, 03:02 AM
Not to derail this too much, but I have to comment on this.
A "knowledge dump" brained person may have difficulty believing in a higher power, since this is conceptual thinking. They may be able to memorize the doctrine of entire religions, but it makes no sense to them. They need facts and figures presented to them to base their beliefs on. Evolution may appeal to their way of thinking, since there's lots of numbers and dates and fossil records. How chemicals could suddenly become alive, then evolve into humans, fish, birds and insects doesn't matter to them. They don't think about "how."

Logical thinkers, on the other hand, will examine the probability of everything in nature occuring by chance. There must be an exact theory... one that the logical thinker can replay in his mind, and see exactly how it works. Logical thinkers gravitate toward religion since it presents a workable theory. It answers the logical thinker's need to know "how."


On the contrary, it's been my experience that the more analytical a person tends to be, the higher the likelihood that they're an agnostic, atheist, or some other non-mainstream alternative (Wicca, Buddhism, etc). You're going to have a damn tough time finding a self-professed atheist who doesn't understand logical arguments.

The only way to get through to those "knowledge dump" people is by bombarding them with figures and statistics. How many times are firearms used in self defense? How often do criminals ignore gun laws? What percentage of the population is a victim of violent crime each year? How often do the police arrive too late? How many American gun owners didn't shoot themselves this year? How many CCW holders haven't commited a crime with their sidearm?

As someone else in this thread pointed out, for most antis the only effective argument possible is going to be emotional in nature. You can quote statistics showing how many billions of infants are saved by AK-47s every ten minutes, and it won't matter one bit. The fundamental fact is that the majority of them are personally, psychologically, hoplophobic. They're either not the sort to question their own beliefs, or they've never had anyone else seriously try to educate them. Ignorance is self-perpetuating, and that is the great obstacle to everyone who seeks to preserve our rights.

Travis Lee
January 27, 2008, 03:43 AM
I'd just like to point out that the two things I've marked in bold are not the same thing. In fact, the overwhelming majority (70%) of murders are not random acts of violence. So if your brother is not participating in illicit activities or doesn't have an intense personal conflict, feeling that he is never in danger is an entirely logical position. Statistically speaking, it's incredibly unlikely that he'll be a victim of violent crime; in fact, IIRC he's more likely to die in a fire than be killed in a random murder.

And, of course, like someone mentioned earlier, the violent crime rate is incredibly dependent on where you live. So if your brother lives in a nice neighborhood, he might be more likely to be struck by lightning.

Me, I live in a nice neighborhood, and don't run in a bad crowd. But the Boy Scout lesson of "being prepared" kinda stuck. So I own a gun. And I lock my doors and windows. And I practice good OpSec. But if I were a gamblin' man, I'd be willing to lay a giant sum of money down that I'd never discharge any firearm in defense in my entire life.


Statistics don't mean a thing when some BG decides you look like either food, or fun to pound, "just because".

I've been attacked 4 times in the last 20+ years.

Not because I was engaged in drugs, or going to divey bars, or sleeping with some steroid-head's binky.

Three times were because they decided I was an ATM machine with legs, once was by some characters, at least one of which lived at my apartment complex.... no not some crappy apt in a known crappy area.

3 were for robbery and recreational mayhem/murder.... 75% so by your generalization not random.... and...what?

The fourth incident might well be mischaracterized by simple minded police, or so-called statisticians that as "neighbors" we "must" know each other and thereby "have a relationship"....

You may be right that you will never be in a serious self defense situation. Good luck with that.

Personally, I would not make that same bet.

--Travis--

Baba Louie
January 27, 2008, 09:30 AM
My older sister is anti. I/We have summed up her side of the story as follows:
Life is sacred. Violence is unacceptable and can lead to death. Guns are violent. Therefore, ALL guns = bad ju ju. Period. End of story. The entire class will be punished for the potential actions of the single odd impulse control lacking twit. Except for the military and the police, of course. They are societies "Sacred Killers", she wishes they were on a tighter leash (and you do know Baba, that they have the highest divorce/suicide rate).

She's also a judgemental, control freak, but I love her anyway.

RDak
January 27, 2008, 10:01 AM
Classic example I've seen over the years of someone not knowing the value of firearms until THEY experience violence. They tend to have no empathy regarding this subject until violence or crime comes THEIR way. Very sad.

This selfish lack of understanding is common amongst anti-gunners. They have their heads in the sand IMHO.

willbrink
January 27, 2008, 01:15 PM
I have to say, my reading of all this is a bit different. I am not seeing this as a gun debate per se, but a child/parent issue. How old are you? You are still living at your parents yes? Now your brother is too?

Thatís all fine, but the last word comes from you parents as itís their house. Point being, if your parents are fine with you having the AR in their house, and know you are a responsible person, then thatís the last word on the topic. Your brother should take it up with them, and move out if he does not like the decisions of the house made by those who actually own it (e.g., STFU or GTFO).

If they agree with your brother and donít wan the AR in their house, then you need to remove it from the house and or move out. Me, I would not tolerate two kids, my kids, acting in such a manner and the law would be made clear.

RyanM
January 27, 2008, 01:20 PM
The third thing I have noticed is that when it comes to these issues, he refuses to hear facts. When I point him in the direction of factual information, he says that he doesn't care..... which obviously is not true given his strong anti position on this. You can't hate something so much, and not care about it at the same time. I think it's that he, along with many other antis, subconsciously doesn't want to hear the facts because if they knew them, and continued to spout falsities, they would transition from being simply naive as to the facts, to lying.

There's the crux of the problem right there. He's uninformed and uninformable. His entire arguments consist of nothing but "I disagree because I have no clue what I'm talking about and I refuse to learn!"

Either teach him how to think for himself first (maybe try and change his mind on some other topic that he feels strongly about but not quite as much, like animal testing has very clear-cut, obvious benefits for humanity), or let it go.

SuperNaut
January 27, 2008, 01:44 PM
What I've noticed is that people are completely incapable of being logical in all areas of their lives. Democrat or Republican, Liberal or Conservative, educated or uneducated, male or female, doesn't matter. They can be the most rational and logical person on one issue or in one area of their lives, yet are unable to apply those same critical thinking skills to other issues or areas.

Additionally, on THR often I see people mistaking black and white thinking for logic.

chieftain
January 27, 2008, 02:13 PM
Additionally, on THR often I see people mistaking black and white thinking for logic.

One of the most intelligent statements ever made on this board.

Go figure.

Fred

obmax1212
January 27, 2008, 09:06 PM
You know, I am an atheist, and I always thought that "liberal" (in the contemporary sense) atheists were a bit peculiar. How can you reject theism, but embrace liberalism? It requires just as much faith to believe that liberalism is correct as it does to believe in a god. In any event, this is one atheist, and there are many others, who are not liberals and own guns.

I bring this up only because I read someplace that atheists are trusted less in our society than Muslims, immigrants, and homosexuals with regards to "sharing a vision of America". I figured that this was worth stating in light of the fact that at least two people have attempted to bash atheists in this thread already. For example, only a "knowledge dump" individual would not believe in religion. That is an incredibly narrow and ridiculous thing to believe.

Dr. Peter Venkman
January 27, 2008, 09:33 PM
You know, I am an atheist, and I always thought that "liberal" (in the contemporary sense) atheists were a bit peculiar. How can you reject theism, but embrace liberalism? It requires just as much faith to believe that liberalism is correct as it does to believe in a god. In any event, this is one atheist, and there are many others, who are not liberals and own guns.

I would argue that liberalism (and I am assuming that you believe in the Kantian principles of man is an end in himself, et cetera) as a philosophy is centered around what could be deemed as 'rational' principles (I am me, you are you, contrasted with the Nietzschean argument "I get to control you because I can") and as such cannot be directly compared to believing in a Godly figure which would be argued there is no evidence for.

Regardless, you cannot teach someone who refuses to be taught. It does not seem like your brother will be a good lawyer if he cannot discern fact from wishy-washy feelings.

zminer
January 27, 2008, 11:15 PM
Humans assess risks by emotional impact. ... The common soccermom experience is not inclusive of violence and crime. It does have basis for kids finding ways to get into what they shouldn't. It does have a basis for a stable, safe life without physical danger.

This is the key to understanding the disconnect between your brother's point of view and your own. Frankly, it is counterproductive for everyone to post on here saying, "antis have no logic, they don't understand anything," because you can be guaranteed that there are anti-gun forums out there where they say the same things about pro-gunners. Instead we should do what we can to understand where they're coming from so we can engage them in meaningful dialog (good for you for having an honest discussion with him on an issue of importance to both of you).

Is it that much of a stretch of the imagination to enter the life of a person who has never in their life had a problem which they felt they needed firearms to solve? In their view, firearms are unnecessary and because they also hear of stories where people are harmed by firearms, they see them as a dangerous non-necessity. Why would they be in favor of making such things available, much less bringing them into their homes?

Now, another poster hit on the key point here: your brother doesn't feel safe given the level of protection he expects from the police. Over the coming weeks and months, you can point out to him that many people feel the same way and that they choose to have firearms (safely) on their person in case they need protection which the police cannot offer.

At least in this situation you and he would be able to reach some kind of emotional understanding - though not agreement - rather than just talking past each other.

iiibdsiil
January 28, 2008, 12:19 AM
I didn't read everyone's replies, just going back to the original post...

I have noticed the same exact thing with anti's that you have with your brother. They don't want to hear logic and reasoning, as when you put everything in perspective, they would have to realize how retarded they are for thinking that way. I've noticed that the few kids a year that are killed from accidental firearm deaths are enough to justify banning guns for the entire nation. If it helps the kids, you know. Let's just throw out the fact that the police have no obligation to protect you, don't get there in enough time typically, and the many more times that firearms save people's lives every day.


On that one portion of your test being better then your brothers, what I've noticed is that being pro-gun, not only pro-gun, but an active participant in spreading the RKBA gospel, that you realize how people try to skew things. Being that you can make a statistic show whatever you want, and the anti's do it worse then anyone, I've learned to look at the details. I've learned that statistics mean absolutely nothing. If you are going to explain something to me, do it in relation to 0, and do it in relation to the opposite in regards to 0. I don't want to hear that 1/3 of the nation doesn't have guns. I want to know that 100 million people don't have guns, and 2 million do, then hit me with the statistic.

We had to do business feasibility plans last semester, so I played it to my advantage. We surveyed 20 people, and used percentages when we presented. "85% of respondents said they would use our product." Yeah, 85% because we polled people that we knew would be interested, and we said 85% so we didn't have to admit we only polled 20 people. It's all in the details. :D

The funny thing is that no one bothered to ask how many people we polled, and there was a Q&A time at the end of our hour long presentation. Including the teacher. We got drilled on fire extinguisher placement, doorway widths, and our break even point, but not on the stuff that actually matters. :rolleyes:

The sad thing is, these people are allowed to vote. And they are going to be running the country here in a year or so...

Anyways, my point is, I think that a lot of us have noticed the crap that gets played. Because of that, we are forced to think correctly. Once you've been burned, you learn how to not get burnt again. I think that being pro-gun and active like most of us are, we are getting one of the best experiences of being burnt, and most of us know how to not get burnt again. I don't know if that necessarily would be part of why your one section was higher, or if because that one section is higher, it explains why you understand gun control doesn't work. Just something to ponder.

Oh, and wait until I get to present my business plan this semester for a firearms manufacturing company. :evil:

starboard
January 28, 2008, 12:19 AM
Most college students are naive and spoiled children. I can't bring myself to seriously consider one an 'anti' or whatever else. Let them have children and get bitchslapped by life a few times, and then we'll talk.

serrano
January 28, 2008, 12:42 AM
A "knowledge dump" brained person may have difficulty believing in a higher power, since this is conceptual thinking. They may be able to memorize the doctrine of entire religions, but it makes no sense to them. They need facts and figures presented to them to base their beliefs on. Evolution may appeal to their way of thinking, since there's lots of numbers and dates and fossil records. How chemicals could suddenly become alive, then evolve into humans, fish, birds and insects doesn't matter to them. They don't think about "how."

Logical thinkers, on the other hand, will examine the probability of everything in nature occuring by chance. There must be an exact theory... one that the logical thinker can replay in his mind, and see exactly how it works. Logical thinkers gravitate toward religion since it presents a workable theory. It answers the logical thinker's need to know "how."


You said 'No flames, please.' - so I'll just say thanks for the laugh.

amprecon
January 28, 2008, 11:49 AM
I lived an hour north of L.A. when the R.K. riots were going on, I had anti-gun neighbors, who knew I owned guns, ask if they could borrow some until things settled down.
It takes different triggers for different people for them to realize that life is reality, to include the good and the bad.

RPCVYemen
January 28, 2008, 01:41 PM
The third thing I have noticed is that when it comes to these issues, he refuses to hear facts. When I point him in the direction of factual information, he says that he doesn't care...

Whether or not he is "being logical" has a lot to do with whether or not the facts are germane to his analysis of underlying issues. For example, I know religious pacifists who argue that only G-d has the right to take a human life - that it is morally wrong to chose to take the life of another human being under any circumstances.

If someone expresses that belief, and I show them stats NRA created to back CCW laws based on declining rates of robbery in selected counties related to CCW laws, who's not thinking logically? I am. The facts are completely un-related to the argument.

Usually (but not always) when someone doesn't care about "the facts", then one of two things is true:


The facts I am proposing are unrelated to their analysis of the problem.
They understand that both sides on any issue have an army of statisticians that can create "facts" on a whim. :)


Part of the logical process is identifying shared axioms.

Mike

Ed Ames
January 28, 2008, 02:07 PM
Just throwing my six cents in....

I can say (and have said) basically the same things as the brother... I don't trust police to protect me, and I never feel I am in any danger*.

I don't consider those to be anti or even proto-anti positions. Rather, I consider them to be indications of more or less normal aclimatization to the prevailing social norms and the dangers implicit in those norms.

That's something we often miss in talking about reasonable fear. There are all sorts of things we do, and take for granted, that are very dangerous. Cooking... I've personally known people -- several people -- that lost parts of their houses, had to have multiple surgeries and physical therapy, in general have seriously messed up their lives because they made a mistake while cooking. Those mistakes often involved children as well... yet we don't hear anti-kitchen campaigners trying to prevent the tragic carnage and protect America's children by banning the private ownership of unlicensed stoves. Why not? Mostly because everybody cooks and they've aclimatized to the danger to the point where it seems absurd to talk about the Deadly Menace Facing America: A Kitchen in Every House.

Likewise I've known people who were seriously injured, and others who were killed, driving cars... very few Americans think twice about hopping in the car just for fun. Very few think twice about letting their kids ride in cars. You won't hear parents freaking out, or threatening to disown their children, because Johnny bought a...*gasp* Black Sedan... the same sort of sedans Cops drive. It's normal to most of us. It isn't universally normal of course... go to a major city and you'll start to meet adults who have never driven a car, don't have a license, and are just as terrified of cars as the antis are of guns.

Airplanes? I haven't personally known anyone that has (to my knowledge) actually been injured or killed (yet) while flying. Very few people do actually because the total deaths are fairly low. There is also far less contact... most of us don't fly very often. Far less contact; far more fear.

Guns? Many people come in direct contact with guns once or twice in their lifetime. Contrast that with flying they do once every few years on average. A LOT more fear even though, again, most of us know far more people who have been injured or killed in car accidents than with firearms.

The normal stuff... the stove in your kitchen, the car you drive, the risk of random violence you face... those aren't any big deal. Not to a normal and healthy person they aren't anyway. Fear of everyday things... fear of cooking, driving a car, or going out in public... whatever... is a sign of mental health issues.

Going back to the kitchen: Switch to a society where people aren't expected to cook their own food (and there have been many...you could argue we're just trending towards that now in the US) and fear of kitchens would become quite a bit more normal and would cease to be a sign of mental health issues.

So I'd go along with the brother at least up to a point. I'm not afraid of kitchen fires but I have a fire extinguisher *and* my first aid kit has specific (and specifically acquired... not just "whatever was in the kit") burn treatment products. I'm not afraid of violent crime but I am waiting for my concealed handgun license. I don't fear these things because they are normal to my existence but I prepare for them because I recognize the dangers... including the extra danger introduced by my lack of fear. I'm far more likely to burn myself simply because I don't consider cooking dinner to be fearworthy.

One issue we (as the pro- side) face is that many people simply don't think in terms of preparedness. I had a conversation recently with someone about pocket knives. He flat didn't understand why anyone would think they needed a knife in their pocket. He'd lived for 40+ years and had never needed a knife, didn't understand why anyone else would, and that was that. Same goes for guns in many cases with the difference that, once you carry a knife for even a few weeks, you realize that there are 1000+1 uses for a pocket knife in day-to-day life whereas (hopefully) most of us won't find day-to-day uses for a handgun. The guy who didn't understand carrying pocket knives was basically anti-pocketknife. He couldn't understand why any sane person would complain about a law against carrying a knife and could see where keeping knives out of the pockets of crazy people was a good thing. Within his limited framework his position was even logical in its way. Wrong but consistent.

All of that said....

I think there is a serious flaw in the idea of someone who has significant and self-admitted problems with logic trying to be a lawyer though. I'd say he should re-evaluate his priorities there.

* Which a firearm would protect me from. I must include that because I've been in plenty of danger during car accidents, on motorcycles, learning to fly airplanes, etc. and I certainly consider many of the current political trends to be dangerous in other ways... but those threats aren't answered by guns.

highorder
January 28, 2008, 02:32 PM
Most college students are naive and spoiled children. I can't bring myself to seriously consider one an 'anti' or whatever else. Let them have children and get bitchslapped by life a few times, and then we'll talk.

sweeping generalizations are of little help here. Do you personally know most college students? And what of those that will never know harm, crime, poverty, or hardship in life? Are you saying that one's beliefs are less viable until they have experienced hardship?

come on...

bloodedsky
January 28, 2008, 03:46 PM
college students *are* naive and spoiled children! their opinions mean nothing! let's bitchslap them all! (sarcasm)

if his brother says he's an anti, then he's an anti (at this juncture in time). doesn't matter if the dude is 12 or 50. you'll find that the "naive and spoiled children" class doesn't discriminate on the basis of age. ;)

that having been said, life *is* the great moderator of us all. the whole, unabridged truth about guns encompasses everybody's views, antis included.

Foosinho
January 28, 2008, 05:24 PM
You know, I am an atheist, and I always thought that "liberal" (in the contemporary sense) atheists were a bit peculiar. How can you reject theism, but embrace liberalism? It requires just as much faith to believe that liberalism is correct as it does to believe in a god. In any event, this is one atheist, and there are many others, who are not liberals and own guns.
Huh? I'm a liberal atheist gun owner - who scored in the 96th percentile on the cognitive reasoning portion of the GRE - who has absolutely no issue reconciling atheism, gun ownership, and liberalism. There's no faith involved in any of it.

I've learned that statistics mean absolutely nothing.
You haven't learned the correct lesson. Statistics tell you useful information about the underlying data set. It's when you cook the underlying data (like your non-random sampling) that statistics can give you incorrect impressions. Statistics are an abstraction of sorts of the raw data.

Just throwing my six cents in....
This was a tremendous post, Ed.

cambeul41
January 28, 2008, 05:46 PM
For example, I know religious pacifists who argue that only G-d has the right to take a human life - that it is morally wrong to chose to take the life of another human being under any circumstances.

I, too, hear this argument. In return, I ask gently whether that means the religious pacifist therefore cannot serve as God's instrument. So far I have not received a reply.

RPCVYemen
January 28, 2008, 05:57 PM
I, too, hear this argument. In return, I ask gently whether that means the religious pacifist therefore cannot seve as God's instrument. So far I have not received a reply.

Either you encounters with religious pacifist are apocryphal or you aren't listening.

I think even a non-pacifist can answer that question in under 10 seconds - "Every war has been justified by the claim - on both sides - that they were G-d's instrument. The claim to be G-d's instrument is not justification for killing another human being."

In general, the pacifists I have known would serve as G-d's instrument by dying, but not by killing.

I seriously hope you were able to answer your own question as fast as you could type it!

Mike

cambeul41
January 28, 2008, 06:36 PM
Either you encounters with religious pacifist are apocryphal or you aren't listening.

I listen. But I suspect the truth is that those that say this to me are not really pacifists, but are for the most part are quoting their minister and have never thought of defending what they say or countering what I say. Most of the people I get into such discussions with are in Detroit. There are a lot of churches here, but I do not know how much real piety.

I am not religious, so a true, well educated religious pacifist would probably make sukiyaki meat of me if I tried to really argue a religious point of view. I would never say I was an instrument of God. I do refer them to articles on the subject of religion and self-defense -- then drop the subject because I am not trying to convert them. I would, though, like them to understand that there is more than one thought out and perhaps moderately reasonable position on the subject.

"Every war has been justified by the claim - on both sides - that they were G-d's instrument. The claim to be G-d's instrument is not justification for killing another human being."

Every war? Oh, come now!

USAFNoDAk
January 28, 2008, 06:55 PM
I don't listen to Michael Savage very often as his style doesn't lend itself to my endearance. However, he makes one statement that I whole heartedly believe he is correct on. He says that liberalism is a mental disorder. I believe your brother is demonstrating that exact fact. Most people, who are normal and logical, if they want to form an opinion on something, will seek out information and people who are knowledgeable to feed them data, so that they might come to an "informed" opinion. Many liberals, not all, try to think with their emotions on full power. Thus, logic and facts get buried under the noise floor of these emotions. The power of the emotions cause distortion, similar to how too much base causes distortion in less expensive speakers.

If one refuses to discuss or look at facts to come to a conclusion about any topic, it shows that they are not hitting on all cylinders from a mental perspective. That doesn't mean they are evil or ill people. They just have a disorder that they are completely unaware of. It's hard to convince someone that they have a problem which they are unaware of, especially when discussing "mental disorders". I know many people who have this same affliction. I actually like most of them, but it's indeed frustrating that they won't accept nor seek help. They won't even admit that they have a problem, much as true alcoholics won't admit that they have a drinking problem, usually until it's too late.

RPCVYemen
January 28, 2008, 07:31 PM
But I suspect the truth is that those that say this to me are not really pacifists, but are for the most part are quoting their minister and have never thought of defending what they say or countering what I say.

Talk with Quakers, Brethren or Mennonites - the traditional "peace churches". I spent a good deal of time with Quakers. Many, many Quakers were Conscientious Objectors in WWII, and spent their time in CCC camps thinking about/debating pacifism.

Every war? Oh, come now!

It seems like an extreme claim, but I have a hard time refuting it. With the exception of the 20th century where one side claimed to have G-d on their side - fighting "G-dless communists", most wars seem to have been fought by people who claimed to have G-d or their gods on their side.

At any rate, I am not defending pacifism. I am a Jew, and believe that we are obligated to struggle against evil with the tools at hand - even when that includes war.

My only point in my earlier post was that if the facts being presented don't have anything to do with the anti's argument, it's pretty reasonable to ignore them.

Mike

Foosinho
January 28, 2008, 08:09 PM
He says that liberalism is a mental disorder. I believe your brother is demonstrating that exact fact.
:rolleyes: That's not at all condescending, and will surely help bring people together on common ground.

rainbowbob
January 28, 2008, 08:59 PM
Originally Posted by USAFNoDAk
I don't listen to Michael Savage very often as his style doesn't lend itself to my endearance. However, he makes one statement that I whole heartedly believe he is correct on. He says that liberalism is a mental disorder.

What is it about Savage's style you don't like? He's too civil? :rolleyes:

serrano
January 28, 2008, 10:22 PM
I don't listen to Michael Savage very often as his style doesn't lend itself to my endearance. However, he makes one statement that I whole heartedly believe he is correct on. He says that liberalism is a mental disorder. I believe your brother is demonstrating that exact fact. Most people, who are normal and logical, if they want to form an opinion on something, will seek out information and people who are knowledgeable to feed them data, so that they might come to an "informed" opinion.

Oh, the irony.

Ninja42
January 28, 2008, 11:25 PM
A "knowledge dump" brained person may have difficulty believing in a higher power, since this is conceptual thinking. They may be able to memorize the doctrine of entire religions, but it makes no sense to them. They need facts and figures presented to them to base their beliefs on. Evolution may appeal to their way of thinking, since there's lots of numbers and dates and fossil records. How chemicals could suddenly become alive, then evolve into humans, fish, birds and insects doesn't matter to them. They don't think about "how."

Logical thinkers, on the other hand, will examine the probability of everything in nature occuring by chance. There must be an exact theory... one that the logical thinker can replay in his mind, and see exactly how it works. Logical thinkers gravitate toward religion since it presents a workable theory. It answers the logical thinker's need to know "how."


As an atheist, an empirical thinker and a very dedicated pro gunner, I must say that I could not disagree more with you.

First of all, the names 'logical thinker' and 'knowledge dump' alone suggests a strong bias towards one over the other, which is always a bad start when one try to objectively compare two groups of individuals. I personally like to divide people into those who tend to think more empirical than dogmatic, and those who are opposite. This way of dividing people up is in my humble opinion not as biased, and at any rate it describes the individuals in either group much more accurately.

Let’s start with the empirical thinkers, which is the closest thing to your 'logical thinkers' group. People in this group likes to question any bit of information presented to them, and prefer to base their views on personal experiences and what he can logically conclude from them. Empirical thinkers will never think of any theory, statement or school of thought as being absolutely true, but will go with the one that offers the best answers in the moment, such as for example the evolutionary theory, and will abandon said theory, statement or school of thought the very moment they are proven to be false. Scientists, with the notable exceptions of physicists and mathematicians, are by definition empirical thinkers, and so are most atheists. Nearly all libertarians are empirical thinkers, and thus nearly all empirical thinkers have profound pro-gun opinions.

Dogmatic thinkers on the other hand are closest to those you describe as 'knowledge dump' people. A person in this group will at some point in his/her life establish a dogma of ideas and thoughts that he/she feel very strongly in favour of, and tends to stick to it no matter how much proof he/she finds that challenges the dogma. Dogmatic thinkers tend to disregard most evidence that does not support their chosen dogma, but still they prefer deal in absolute truths rather than mere probabilities. Dogmatic thinkers can be very different individuals, depending on the influences of the individuals during the founding of their dogmas, but dogmatic people do have some tendencies in common. First of all, dogmatic thinkers tends towards religion, as religion often offers the absolute answers that the founding of a rock solid personal dogma requires, while providing a convenient way of disregarding everything that does not fit inside the boundaries of the dogma, in the form of divine intervention.

Anti-gun people are not surprisingly almost always dogmatic, which means that reasoning is largely wasted on them. Instead, the right way of dealing with these people is to change the way they feel on the subject rather than trying to out-reason them, simply because all of the evidence that we can present to them to support our case will be disregarded as false, because if feels wrong to the anti-gunner. .cheese.īs brother is such a person, and if you dig deep enough I am sure that you will find that he have been exposed to the opinions of a charismatic anti-gunner during the founding of his personal dogma. Maybe some factor have made him more prone to accepting his mothers views as his own back when he started to get an interest in politics? Or maybe he has had an anti-gun teacher in school that he looked up to for some reason? Whatever the reason is, I’m sure that a little digging in his past will yield the reason to his stance on gun control, his unusually strong beliefs regarding his personal safety, and his apparent amazing abilities to accept book knowledge fast.

Rudy Kohn
January 29, 2008, 02:23 AM
I think all of this quibbling over the use of "liberal" as a perjorative is counter-productive. What is important here is not one's opinion on (insert non-gun social issue here). Part of the problem is that too many frame gun rights as a liberal vs. conservative issue.

I think what we can learn from .cheese.'s situation is that, though fighting unwinnable battles may be gallant and even admirable, the way to win the war of words is to fight the battles we can win--and there are a lot of them. We can't win over everybody (i.e. real authoritarians); some people just won't listen, no matter what we try, but we can maximize support.

In the time one of us can spend arguing with a "true believer," one could probably convince ten misguided or misinformed folks that guns aren't evil or scary or (insert negative gun opinion here), or write ten elected officials, or whatever. The facts are on our side, logic is on our side, but the prevailing opinion is not (yet). The solution is stuff you guys (and gals) have all heard before: make a few points, offer a little rebuttal, and leave an open offer to take somebody to the range. Next. You won't win over any "true believers" this way, but you won't waste time on them.

Heck, I'm new to gun ownership--even knowing and understanding the four rules and thinking a lot about safety issues and reading manuals online beforehand, handling a gun was a little scary at first. (pretty much my only other experience with guns had been several years earlier with a .22 double action revolver and a Beretta 92FS at a place in Vegas called "The Gun Store.") But in the end, I got over it, and I'm pretty comfortable (though not yet very accurate) with my Rodeo and my Single Six. Now I just need to shoot more and get some instruction when I can. I was never anti-gun, but I really just didn't care. What changed my mind? I guess it started when I saw the Penn&Teller episode on gun control. Then I found THR, went through GunFacts, read some John Lott... the rest is recent history. Shoot, I wrote my representative on Saturday regarding a 2nd amendment matter! From "don't care" to "wrote Rep." in twelve months!

Anyway, maybe as the tide of opinion swings our way, as I hope it will, the "true believers" will reconsider their positions, if only to stay in office. If not, I'd imagine candidates would come along who could win out by being different on this issue alone.

I dunno. Maybe I'm blinded by idealism tonight.

By the way,
I personally like to divide people into those who tend to think more empirical than dogmatic, and those who are opposite...Scientists, with the notable exceptions of physicists and mathematicians, are by definition empirical thinkers,

:confused:

If you're dividing thinkers up into dogmatic and empirical, and physicists and mathematicians aren't empirical... what are they? They may be sometimes abstract, but they're very empirical... probably more so than chemistry or biology.
We'd have thrown out quantum mechanics and general relativity long ago if they didn't work so well. They are confusing and complicated and abstract, but they do a really good job of describing real things we measure, giving us incredible accuracy in regimes previously unexplorable. Physicists and mathematicians were busy quantifying their observations and looking for trends while biologists were still talking about miasmas and chemists were still talking about earth, water, air, and fire.

Sorry, pet peeve.

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