Gun control and skateboards


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dmazur
January 8, 2013, 10:03 PM
I realize this is preaching to the choir, but there seems to be quite a bit of head-scratching going on re: gun control, including what we as a society might be able to do, other than ban certain classes of firearms / magazines. With that as a preamble, I offer this -

Perhaps guns (as a problem) are similar to automobiles, sex and skateboards.

By that I mean that irresponsible behavior has undesirable consequences for society, as well as the individual, if we have untrained participants.

To this end, we have driver's and sex education programs, taught at a school level where the student is old enough to understand the material. The intent is to reduce the incidence of automobile accidents, unwanted pregnancies and STD's. We also have skateboard parks to try to contain those things, rather than have them on the streets and stairways.

When something with a strong desire behind it exists, as in the above three examples, it is impractical to simply say, "Don't do it." The activity will occur anyway, and the results will probably be worse without the training / accommodation.

As part of the solution, society should have punishment for violators. Unlawful operation of a motor vehicle should have harsh penalties. Sex with a minor and rape should have harsh penalties, as should deliberate STD infection. Operating a skateboard on a public street or sidewalk should also have appropriate penalties. And these penalties should be carefully explained as part of the education programs for each activity.

So, why is it such a stretch to include gun safety as part of our education process? Teach the Four Rules. Explain the consequences of misuse of firearms. Provide a place for kids to shoot, safely.

And enforce existing gun laws.

Surely, if we are intelligent enough to devise a way to live with skateboards, we can figure out how to live with guns. :)

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Solo
January 8, 2013, 10:06 PM
To this end, we have driver's and sex education programs
Well, if you consider "abstinence education" education.

So, why is it such a stretch to include gun safety as part of our education process? Teach the Four Rules. Explain the consequences of misuse of firearms. Provide a place for kids to shoot, safely.
This would, I feel, be a great idea, and I'd love to see more high school shooting teams. Probably won't happen in this political climate, though. Cars, no matter how deadly, are cool and not scary. Guns, no matter how safe, are scary, and not cool.

Apachedriver
January 8, 2013, 10:12 PM
So, why is it such a stretch to include gun safety as part of our education process? Teach the Four Rules. Explain the consequences of misuse of firearms. Provide a place for kids to shoot, safely.

Perhaps because knowledge is power. Achieving power threatens those who are in power or who seek to be in power. Skateboards, cars, drinking, sex...none of these proves to be a threat to anyone who wants power. If anything, they can be tools of corruption and manipulation to be used in the control of the masses and the destruction of others who seek power as well.

Neo-Luddite
January 8, 2013, 10:16 PM
The problem with teaching safety is born of the fact that the Brady Bunch crowd can't abide ANY 'gun safety' ed apart from never ever touch. They are ideaologically oppossed to anything that might threaten their ultimate message; guns have no place in the world anywhere.

dmazur
January 8, 2013, 10:16 PM
Oh, I absolutely agree that the probability of success is low, because the solution is not easily seen by those who oppose guns because they are "scary".

What I was proposing was the idea of a "goal".

If I remember correctly, the instant reaction to skateboards was to outlaw them in city areas. There was no understanding or compassion by law enforcement.

However, someone came up with the idea of skate parks. In order to build a skate park, you have to admit that banning them didn't solve the problem.

So, if we can shift the mind-set of the antis in the direction of training and accommodation rather than banning, we will make progress.

And, sometimes, an analogy helps. ( IMO )

Solo
January 8, 2013, 10:28 PM
Actually, I just had a thought. In my first post, I made a joke about how sexual education in schools is abysmal - abstinence only education is basically a waste of a billion dollars in taxpayer money per year, yet it is still pushed in schools. Many teenagers do not receive proper education as to safe sex, sexually transmitted infections, healthy relationships, and etc.

Why? Because these programs are a vehicular for political agendas and are not intended to actually educate. There's too much politics in our schools.

dmazur
January 8, 2013, 10:55 PM
Several people I know have given up on the public school system.

Apparently the presence of too much politics has completely ruined the ability of the teachers to teach.

(Everyone has to pass, because funding is involved. They don't keep score when playing basketball, because someone's feelings might be hurt if they lose. Etc.)

At any rate, in the few conversations I have had about gun control, I'm seeing limited success with introducing other ideas: "Yes, you could ban AR-15's, but isn't the real problem enforcement of existing law? Homicide is illegal, but that doesn't stop the determined criminal." OR "Yes, you could ban high-capacity magazines, but isn't the real problem caused by broken homes and a lack of opportunity? We should reduce the number of criminals, not the number of guns."

Most don't understand, and aren't willing to think. But a couple have, so I'm encouraged.

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