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Essay: The Gun Debate Itself Makes Children and Society Less Safe

Discussion in 'General Gun Discussions' started by CmdrSlander, Jan 24, 2013.

  1. CmdrSlander

    CmdrSlander Well-Known Member

    Last edited: Jan 24, 2013
  2. CmdrSlander

    CmdrSlander Well-Known Member

    Edit to remove what is now shameless shelf promotion.
    Last edited: Jan 24, 2013
  3. What is the source of this clearly biased and ill-conceived piece?
  4. CmdrSlander

    CmdrSlander Well-Known Member

    That would be me...

    and thanks.
  5. Skribs

    Skribs Well-Known Member

    As to the quality of the essay, I think it's splendid. I'm going to comment on the content, not as suggestions for editing, but as comments to your position.

    You seem to sway both ways in your article, but I'm taking that as playing devil's advocate (something I like to do, and I think leads to better answers).

    I do not believe total disarmament would substantially increase public safety. If you look at the Faces of THR thread, you can see I'm not that big a guy (although I've put on weight since those pics...not muscle either). I'm 5'6, 165, and not a good runner. I don't want to be unarmed against an unarmed 6'0 200 pound mugger. I would much rather be armed against that mugger, even if he's armed. I also do not believe that, sans guns, mass murders would not exist. Arson, bombs, gas, even knives can be used by almost anyone.

    As to your solution, (which I agree with, 100%, by the way), the anti's aren't going to like it. They don't want to just disarm themselves...they want to disarm everyone. Disarming themselves serves no purpose.

    Overall, I like your premise. What I've been saying is that both parties should find what they agree is the problem and work towards that. The problem is, as you've pretty much said, 95% of the reaction to Sandy Hook is "we need to talk about guns" and only 5% seems to be about violence. How much could we accomplish if we stopped the gun debate and increased the focus on stopping violence by 20-fold?
  6. CmdrSlander

    CmdrSlander Well-Known Member

    Yah, the total disarmament thing was a mental debate for me, but I feel that if we really disarmed everyone, including the criminals, through some vast campaign, society would be safer overall... That is however totally impossible and will always be such so I'll keep my firearms, and my concealed carry permit, thank you very much.
  7. CmdrSlander

    CmdrSlander Well-Known Member

    I tweaked it a little. The essay is meant to be persuasive to both sides, so I have to throw the anti-gun position a bit of a bone. Even if there's no meat on it... :)
  8. Skribs

    Skribs Well-Known Member

    Well, you've got 734 posts here so you know the general opinion of THR as to whether a completely unarmed society would be safer. I'm not going to argue with you, but I do disagree with your point.

    I know how you often have to do that in essays. One of my favorite projects in school was when we had to pick a contraversial topic, and then defend the opposite position. It really made me think. I did such a good job that people thought I misinterpreted the assignment ;)

    I understand that you don't want to ramble, but one possible solution that I don't see listed, that I would suggest, is fixing our revolving-door prison system to keep violent offenders from easily becoming repeat-offenders. Another point would be that focusing on guns instead of violence in general pidgeonholes lawmakers (my favorite recent example is the NY law that a physician must report if he thinks his patient will illegally use a gun...which means he isn't required by law to report if his patient will use a machete or release a deadly virus).
  9. CmdrSlander

    CmdrSlander Well-Known Member

    I tweaked it again as I don't think I'm articulating my point as well as I want to. My point was meant to be that disarmament would reduce the kind of mass casualty shooting incidents we are seeing now but disarmament is impossible therefore other solutions must be sought.

    I do not, however, wish for something as silly as a world without guns. We had that, it was called human history from the rise of man through the middle ages and it was no rose garden.
  10. CmdrSlander

    CmdrSlander Well-Known Member

    I say this because I feel it is intellectually dishonest to say the various gun control schemes, perfectly implemented, would not reduce gun violence (studies have shown overall violence is unaffected). The problem is that any gun control scheme sweeping enough to make a difference (and by make a difference I mean, specifically addressing gun violence, which is in and of itself a bit of a non-sequitir since other forms of violence simply fill in where the gun violence was) would be unenforceable, unconstitutional, and likely spark a Civil War.
  11. Here's my main point of contention with this premise. If the argument for gun rights is so strong, if the evidence in favor of widespread gun ownership is so conclusive, and if the other side doesn't have a leg to stand on, why shy away from the debate?

    This is the same ridiculous stance that many pro-gun people turn to insisting we can't talk about the guns and instead point at any number of other things as the reason for society's ills. If other things are truly the cause and guns aren't the cuplrit they are made out to be, shouldn't we exonerate firearms rather than simply attempting to shift the blame in what always looks like a weak diversionary tactic?

    If the proliferation of "assault weapons" doesn't contribute to mass shootings, let's demonstrate that fact with evidence.
    If more guns equals less crime, let's back that up with real research and refute claims to the contrary.
    If universal background checks won't work, let's discuss the reasons for that.
    If magazine limits are so awful, let's explain why.
    If the Second Amendment isn't archaic and shouldn't be repealed as such, let's make the case for its continued existence.

    Refusing to engage in the dialogue implies that we have no response to the claims made by the gun-control crowd, whether we like it or not. Perception is everything.

    The debate will go on whether or not we participate. Do we represent ourselves or do we step back and let them represent us?

    This board is full of people who claim that the gun-control lobby is based on purely on emotion, cooked statistics, and power-grabbing politicians who seek to disarm the masses. If that is the case, we should be able to put forth a more articulate and compelling argument than, "What part of 'shall not be infringed' don't you understand?" or "Hey, look over there at movies and video games! Nothing to see here on the gun side!"?

    If we simply throw up our hands, walk away, and let everyone make their own decision, as this essay suggests, we'll be right back at this point the next time there's a mass shooting.

    My other problem is the assumption that there are just two sides to this. On the contrary, I think there are two very small, very vocal groups making a lot of noise and a whole bunch of people in the middle that don't feel that strongly either way. When pressed to choose a side, without the chance to hear both sides of the argument, they will likely go with the only side they heard.
  12. Skribs

    Skribs Well-Known Member

    Okay, when you say it like this, I get it. But you're right, they would not affect violence in general, just gun violence. Therefore, you have all those nasty side-effects (i.e. Civil War), but no benefit.
  13. Skribs

    Skribs Well-Known Member

    Jorg, I don't think that he's saying we shouldn't participate in the dialog and let the anti's go on a rampage. I think he's saying we should say to the anti-gun group: let's stop this nonsense, and look at solving what we can BOTH agree are problems.

    Say you are writing a group paper. You like guns and cats. Your partner likes cooking and cats. Do you spend your entire study session arguing whether to write about guns or cooking? Or do you just write about cats? I think Salamander is saying instead of spending so much time debating guns vs. no-guns, let's look at the issues we agree on - school physical security and mental health.
  14. beatledog7

    beatledog7 Well-Known Member

    Most gun owners I know could focus on common ground, but most antis I know could not. It's the difference thinking about an issue and feeling about it.
  15. Al Thompson

    Al Thompson Moderator Staff Member

    Nice writing, but I think your basic premise is fatally flawed. You are mirroring too much.

    That line tells me that you see that reaction as logical. IME, the vast majority of anti-gunners are bliss ninnies. Their plan for dealing with any emergency is to call 911. One bliss ninny I know let his house burn down* to the foundation as he wasn't prepared to put out a fire in his attic. That thought or course of action never even crossed his mind.

    * Fire department was already involved with another fire.
  16. Skribs

    Skribs Well-Known Member

    Beatle, you are correct, however that is what it will take to get us to stop trying to protect our rights...when they stop trying to take them. Granted, I think we should repeal the laws we have on the books, but at the same time, if the goal is to stop violence, why focus on what you know probably won't go through.

    I haven't taken many business courses, but there are cost-effective ways of looking at problems. The anti-gun agenda is not cost effective. First of all, even if we didn't stand in their way, and they got the majority of what they ask for, it wouldn't stop crime. Government time wasted, no result. But, the fact we do stand in their way means they spend a lot more time (and taxpayer money) defending their position, and then they get substantially less of what they ask for. And still no result. I don't see gun control as a cost-effective means of stopping violence, even if it would.
  17. beatledog7

    beatledog7 Well-Known Member

    Not cost effective, to be sure, and not effective in any other way either. Regarding an issue on which one reached his conclusion without using his mind, another cannot change that mind. Nor can you get past the "this is how I feel, so don't confuse me with facts" position to which so many antis cling.

    Short of being attacked while defenseless (which itself doesn't always work), the most effective cure for an anti is a trip to the range.
  18. Skribs

    Skribs Well-Known Member

    Which also doesn't always work.
  19. beatledog7

    beatledog7 Well-Known Member

    True. But in my experience it has the best chance of working.

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