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Something to consider -

Discussion in 'Legal' started by lsb589, Apr 18, 2007.

  1. lsb589

    lsb589 New Member

    Apr 17, 2007
    I am going to take the name of this forum "The High Road" at face value. I have been lurking and reading for some time.

    The recent events in Virgina are bringing out a lot of the time-worn emotional arguments on both sides of this issue.

    Within this forum, and others like it, I see a real "circle the wagons" mentality, and a lot of belligerent rhetoric.

    I'd just like to toss my $0.02 into the fray and maybe there will be some reasoned responses.

    1) It is pointless to compare high-profile firearms crimes in the USA with other countries, or even areas in open warfare. Even if there is logic to the comparison, people in the USA are far more concerned with events that occur here than elsewhere. This is my opinion, and is not presented as fact.

    2) Every time there is a high-profile firearms crime in the USA it is going to get a lot of hang-wringing coverage. The facts reported in the press with be inaccurate, ignorant, and yes, even biased by well-meaning people who do not understand what they are talking about. They have deadlines, they need to sell commercial time, and this is a fact of life in any free society. The freedom to report the news when, where, and as they see fit is as much an unalienable right as having the means to protect one's self from lethal attack.

    3) And here is my key point: As long as the so-called "gun culture" (A term I dislike, but face it, it's out there) is perceived as not offering positive solutions to the very real problem of angry, mentally unstable people using firearms for mass killings, the so-called "gun culture" will be painted as part of the problem.

    Circling the wagons and bellicose rhetoric simply plays into the hands of those who wish to stereotype the "gun culture" as a bunch of angry men who cling to their guns as a power-fantasy. Don't like that image? Take a look at the rhetoric on this forum, and others, and see how it plays to someone who is ignorant and looking to corroborate the stereotype.

    4) Politically it is *a vital interest* of gun owners to *propose and take active measures* to prevent these tragedies. It is not enough to decry them, to point out that there are already laws, to point out that more laws don't work. All of these things may be accurate, but *they do not contribute to solving the problem.*

    Saying that "if the students had guns they would have ended it sooner" may also be accurate, but it isn't going to play as a reasoned solution. Sorry.

    So - the fact that this deranged person abused *our rights* in order to carry out this crime is, unfortunately, our problem. We must acknowledge that every crime which is committed with a gun is also a direct attack on our rights.

    True, it is not the guns that did the killing in Va Tech, but they sure made it easier to do on a wholesale level than a 4 inch buck knife.

    It is easy to say more laws will not work, but no one has offered a workable solution for what *will* work.

    There are two points of absolute prevention that are obvious. (There may be others, and exploring them is part of the reason for this long note.)

    1) Keep the potential shooter from getting the firepower.
    2) Establishing a firearms free area where ever we don't want these crimes to occur.

    Problem with (1) is that that makes it more difficult for everyone.
    Problem with (2) is that logic ultimately extends it to everywhere. (There haven't been many mass shootings in airport security areas for a long time. You may not *like* that solution, but when it is *effectively applied* it works. The only counter-argument to bans is that they are not effective. That really just invites stricter rules until they *are* effective.)

    Here is a question for the community:
    What *should* a responsible seller do?
    Don't think you have any legal obligation? Probably not, but is there a moral obligation? If you don't do something different, there will likely be a legal obligation we don't like very much.

    What voluntary guidelines for transactions would we propose that might contribute to a solution that helps all of us protect our rights from irresponsible and criminal acts?

    What sanctions could we propose, as a community, against those who are irresponsible, even while complying with the letter of the law and even while exercising their rights? (It *is* possible to exercise rights in an irresponsible manner. With rights come responsibilities.)

    Don't like restrictions? Fine. Wait for government to decide on the solution, and we will like that a lot less.

    Thanks for listening.
  2. crazed_ss

    crazed_ss Participating Member

    Dec 27, 2005
    Sunny San Diego
    I agree with you that everyone needs to stop patting each other on the back saying, "SEE, I TOLD YOU THIS WOULD HAPPEN" .. it's no better than the Antis who are also saying, "SEE, I TOLD YOU THIS WOULD HAPPEN"

    I disagree that CCW isnt a way to avert something like this. Why is the school social setting any different than a mall, theatre, or any other crowded place where people carry guns?
  3. Jamie C.

    Jamie C. Participating Member

    Mar 27, 2005
    Tennessee... the top, middle part.
    The problem with 1) there, isn't the firearms laws.
    The counselor that I saw on the news said the shooter had been identified as troubled/emotionally unstable much earlier on, but couldn't be forced to go to counseling.

    How 'bout changing the laws so the school could require the student to go, once identified as a potential problem?
    What happens here, however, is you end up with all sorts of Civil Rights people up in arms and filing lawsuits. Everybody gets to go home alive at the end of the day, however.

    And as for 2)... Isn't that the very thing they tried to do with the school campus, and failed miserably?
    As for making "everywhere" a secure area, like an airport... well, that's a lot of guards and metal/explosives detectors. Who do you figure is going to want to pay for, much less put up with, that?

    The fact is, short of that, I don't believe it's really practical to try to ban anything "everywhere". Guns, knives, explosives... they're all too readily available or easy to construct.

    And I don't know about anybody else, but I really don't look forward to "Big Brother" having the kind of surveillance ability or control over everybody, that enforcing that kind of ban would require.

  4. Selfdfenz

    Selfdfenz Participating Member

    Jan 8, 2003
    Small-sky country, again

    When pray tell did it become "our" responsibility to provide all the solutions? "Angry, mentally unstable people" by their very nature come from our midst at unpredictable times and have unpredictable patterns of behavior.

    What sector of society, law enforcement, government etc has ever provided a meaningful, positive and enduring solution to "Angry, mentally unstable people". Why is it now our responsibility…..? Can't put my finger on it but something about your assignment of responsibility is worthy of rejection. If it were possible to take away all the firearms, clubs, pointy items etc and the misadventures of "Angry, mentally unstable people" would what …..cease creating issues world-wide overnight?

    *propose and take active measures* to prevent these tragedies…..how can we prevent insanity my friend? Was it the tool or the man behind it?

    And here, as you say, is my key point: When we abandon the truth and the facts, we, as firearms enthusiasts are doomed.

    No attack intended.

  5. Glockfan.45

    Glockfan.45 member

    Sep 7, 2006
    Democratic Peoples Republic of Illinois
    The problem with number two on your list is that it doesnt work period. VT was a firearms free area, and that did not stop a crazed lunatic from taking a prohibited firearm onto campus. No laws are going to stop somebody who is bent on death and destruction with the termination of their own life as their end goal from acting out like this. Do you think for one second that the shooter stoped to consider that the campus was a gun free zone? I doubt very much that he did. Basically what you have offered here is the idea that we should lay down and accept more "reasonable restrictions" to avoid losing all of our rights. What that will get us in the end is Australian or U.K style gun laws my friend. If that happens the the fight is over and we lost. I will not beg and compromise to be left with scraps.

    Now more than ever is the time to stand up to affirm and defend our rights. The tragedy that occured on Monday morning should indeed serve as a wake up call to America. The message being that only you can protect yourself. The police did not arrive in time to stop 33 people from dying, the University staff offered no protection, and fellow classmates offered no protection. Those poor kids were totally alone that morning as that evil man walked from student to student putting a bullet into each one of them. If just one of those students had been armed, just one this whole event may not have occured to the extent that it did. Laws on paper no matter how well intended do not protect you from those with no regard for the law. More restrictions will never undo the underlying problems in society that trigger these events.

    I have read some sad things in the last few days about what people would be willing to trade for a little false security. That statement is quite possibly that worst of them yet. Who gets to decide what people are risks to others? Anybody whos a little bit different becomes suspect. "Hey my friend Jamie C has a bunch of guns at his house. I think he might be planning on killing a bunch of people. We better ship him off to the institution for mandatory evaluation".
  6. DigitalWarrior

    DigitalWarrior Active Member

    Apr 22, 2003
    Nashua NH
    Oh... My... Gosh... Every time I read your post there is more to object to.

    No one has come up with a solution for arson. We do not register or restrict matches. Instead we have a system whereby people can get access to fire extinguishers to see if they can eliminate or contain the fire until the professionals arrive. In the same way, making an effective countermeasure to the possibility of a deadly rampage available will help the situation.

    You cannot ban guns, no matter how strictly you try to do so. Guns are exactly like Methamphetamine. It is easy for a skilled person to manufacture. They can be manufactured from easily obtainable subcomponents which have other legitimate uses. They are valuable. They can be dangerous.

    People need to be educated. If every Swiss household has a class III weapon and a hundred rounds in the closet, weapons are not the correlating factor to violence. If there are problems in this country, we need to talk about other places to get perspective.

    Newspapers need to be as responsible with their first amendment rights as I am with my second amendment rights. Giving out bad information is worse that staying quiet. Newspapers should collect information, fact check it, and THEN publish it.

    Guns are power. Without a gun you cannot say "NO!", you may only beg.

    I have a problem with your assertion that I need to come up with a solution to deal with deranged lunatics. There is no solution.

    Freedom has sharp edges, freedom is pointy, freedom is not non-toxic. Freedom is not suitable for small children (God set them up with parents to rule them for a short time).

    There has never been a mass killing at a gun show. Why, you ask? I imagine that even a lunatic knows his killing spree would be a very short one. Victim disarmament zones do not help victims.
  7. NukemJim

    NukemJim Participating Member

    Dec 26, 2002
    I bleive that Isb589 is correct about point #4

    Underlinig and bold type added by NukemJim

    He did not say that we had to be effective*, just that politically we have to be seen as doing something. Introducing more antigun legislation although ill consiedered and IMHO contraproductive is doing something and oh by the way gets the politician face time on TV as she/he expresses their sorrow, outrage, and how their piece of legislation will help stop this from ever happening again. :barf: :banghead:

    Politically we have to be seen as doing something. Kinda liking fighting a war where you never take offensive action. Sooner or later you are going to lose.

    As to why it is up to gunowners to do this? You do not have to if you do not want to keep your guns.


    (*although done correctly I believe that allowing CCW by teachers/other staff and visitors along with appropriate media coverage could reduce rate but never stop it. The meme is out, unfortunetly)
  8. Jamie C.

    Jamie C. Participating Member

    Mar 27, 2005
    Tennessee... the top, middle part.
    Well, first off, I didn't mention anything about shipping anybody off to an institution, only forcing them to go to counseling after it being recommended by the guidance counselor.
    Also, if you'll notice, I pointed out one of the reasons it would never work. I didn't bother with more than that, since it by it's self would stop the administration of the school from ever even considering it.

    Remember, lsb589 wanted a discussion, and options other than gun-related ones. So I discussed.

    It's hardly my fault that the only realistic thing I could come up with, other than allowing CCW on the campus, wouldn't work. ;)

    As for "Who gets to decide what people are risks to others"... apparently, right this minute, the bureaucrats and politicians do.

  9. El Tejon

    El Tejon Elder

    Dec 24, 2002
    Lafayette, Indiana-the Ned Flanders neighbor to Il
    What people get to decide who was at risk? Well, at Virginia Tech the university officials and the police decided that lawful Virginia CCW holders are more of a risk than mass murderers.

    As to your two questions:

    1) The murderer did buy his pistols from licensed dealers, complying with all federal and state laws. He went through a background check, filled out forms and only bought one gun a month like he was told to by the Virginia state legislature.

    You cannot prevent madmen from acting like madmen. You must shoot them. That is hard to do when both the Virginia police and the Virginia Tech administration forbid you from exercising your right to defend yourself as they will protect you.

    2) Establishing "gun free" zones merely allows the establishment of governmentally approved slaughter pens. Why are madmen shooting up schools and not police conventions? Because they have the only gun in the joint.

    The gun culture, in a loud manly voice, not the whimpering, timid bleating that we endured after Columbine, must point out that the university, the Virginia police unions and the Virginia state legislature must be held accountable for allowing this murder to transpire as they all acted against a bill that would have allowed non-madmen from carrying at colleges.
  10. FieroCDSP

    FieroCDSP Senior Member

    Nov 12, 2006
    Wooster, Ohio
    I think there was a post somewhere to a forum where a guy named Sharpshooter ID's himself as the guy who sold him the Glock. Ths was from a gun store, in a legal manner. All the paperwork was correct. Cho was legally allowed to purchase one. End of story. I don't think the seller should be held legally responsible for what this nut did with the gun. And since I've heard nothing on the news about where or who sold it, I'm inclined to believe there will be no recourse on the gun shop, as he was perfectly legal, and even helped the ATF with the ID.
    As fo moral responsibility, I don't think there is any reason for the seller to feel bad. As a licensed seller, if I feel someone is not quite right, I can decline the sale. I doubt this kid gave any indication he was going to slaughter people with these guns, and if he gave no indication, what is there for the seller to pick up on. And if there was no way to tell this guy was a nut, then the seller was doing his job, and shouldn't blame himself. There are some things you can't prevent, and this is one.
  11. tcgeol

    tcgeol New Member

    Jul 6, 2006
    lsb589, maybe I am misreading your post, but it sounds like you are arguing that we need to accept some gun control in order to prevent more gun control. This makes no sense whatsoever to me. If RKBA is real, it doesn't matter what crimes have been committed. There are inherent risks to living in a free country. We have to fight just the same.
  12. JCF

    JCF Active Member

    Aug 9, 2006
    Oh I BEG to differ… a very great many solutions to a very great many apparently 2A related issues have been posited by some of the more erudite members of this forum.

    Among them:

    *Kill vandals on sight.
    *Kill thieves on sight.
    *Kill illegal immigrants on sight.
    *Kill drug dealers on sight.
    *Kill sex offenders on sight.
    *Respond with violence to verbal insult.
    *Identify anti-gun advocates to potential violent criminals.
    *Minimize government involvement in the regulation of the populace, but pressure the government to perform more executions.
    *Minimize the scope and authority of government, but incarcerate exponentially more offenders and dispense with appeals and other annoying due process.
    *Make firearms training mandatory for everyone.
    *Eliminate mandatory firearms training for anyone.
    *Make firearms ownership mandatory for everyone.
    *Issue firearms to passengers boarding aircraft.
    *Create a “volunteer” Air Marshall program.
    *Declare a “shooting war” on Mexico.

    and... my personal favorite of all time...

    *Hold victims of violent crime accountable for the criminal acts perpetrated upon them, 'cuz they just weren't ready for it.

    Welcome to The High Road

    *** Oh, and please do be sure not to use obscenities or resort to personal invective, as it could be construed as offensive and inflict damage to our cause.
    Last edited: Apr 18, 2007
  13. Sistema1927

    Sistema1927 Senior Member

    May 21, 2004
    "Land of (dis)Enchantment"

    Here are the points that gun owners need to make at this time:

    1) Existing gun control laws did not deter this criminal. Why would anyone think that if 22,000 laws didn't stop him that the imposition of more laws would? If a person is hell bent on breaking one of the highest of laws, the prohibition against murder, exactly what law will they keep?

    2) Gun control, rather than preventing this tragedy, led to disarmed victims who could not receive law enforcement assistance before their lives were forfeit. While we don't know if an armed citizen would have been able to avert this tragedy, we do know that they were unable legally to employ this means of defense.

    We need to hammer these two points home, time after time, and in audience after audience.
  14. Boats

    Boats member

    Dec 29, 2002
    The only reason that it isn't going to play as a "reasoned solution" is because of an insistence on irrational policies that are taken as "reasoned" without serious examination.

    The entire rationale behind disallowing CCWs on the the VT campus is irrational. What is being said by such a policy is that your "betters" are distrusting of you, who have been vetted by the police, to do the right thing with a weapon.

    The presumption is uniformally that one will get drunk, or get in a heated debate on some topic, or get in a love triangle, or get a bad grade, and cut loose with wanton firepower.

    Of course, it is only the nutjobs already predisposed to that sort of violence who do those kinds of things and the policy only prevents bystanders from ending it or from becoming victims. Oh well.

    So, until such irrational "prior restraint" policies are overturned, I'll not be conceding that allowing CCW anywhere, anytime, is not a "reasoned solution."
  15. glummer

    glummer Active Member

    Apr 20, 2006
    You are passively accepting the idea that the “gun culture” needs to offer “positive solutions”, without questioning why the anti-gun culture gets such credit despite offering worthless solutions. Why are they not “painted as part of the problem.” There is something here we are not understanding, and we need to examine it.

    And why is that? It is much more reasonable than anything the other side offers, yet you assume (probably correctly) that “it isn’t going to play.” I believe that is where the key lies. If we want a solution to OUR problem, it will involve understanding not only what “plays”, but also why.

    I doubt it will involve letting our enemies (or "friends") set us up as the ones who need to solve the original problem. Did the slaves have an obligation to solve the problem of growing cotton for the plantation owners? Would they have been better off if they had accepted such responsibility? I think not.
  16. Bartholomew Roberts

    Bartholomew Roberts Moderator Emeritus

    Dec 26, 2002
    Well, if you present it like that it won't sound like a reasoned solution; because you have framed the issue badly.

    However, if you frame the issue properly, it is basic common sense. The people involved may be students; but they aren't children. They are grown adults who are 21 years old. They undergo extensive background checks and often training. They are licensed by the state to carry handguns. They are already carrying handguns in grocery stores, daycares, movie theaters, shopping malls, and hundreds of other places that have the same conditions as many colleges.

    To pretend that there is some rational reason for disallowing them from carrying on a college campus; but allowing it everywhere else is ridiculous. Perhaps it wouldn't have helped in this situation; but it certainly doesn't hurt.

    As for your preventive suggestions, I am not a big fan of approaches that try to guess what you might do in the future and restrict your existing rights accordingly. If your past behavior indicates you cannot exercise that right responsibly, then I would favor some preventive measures - assuming that the link between the specific behavior and judgment/responsibility is a valid one.
  17. Oohrah

    Oohrah Active Member

    Dec 29, 2006
    So. Coast Oregon
    Until solutions for mental health are found for the increase of these problems,
    There is no distinct answer. Years ago there were multiple stabbings in
    Chicago to a number of nurses. Very tough gun laws there, but no human
    or gun control. A few years ago the same crime in a school in Aust., where
    they put a ban on knives. Even with a different choice of weapons, crime
    and mental health issues continue to rise.
    I hope when they attempt to ban high cap. mags, they get to see S&Ws
    representative out shoot the semiautos with a wheel gun. Also remind the
    highest loss of life through bombs like Okl. and the twin towers, and finally
    Waco.:fire: :fire: :fire:
  18. TEDDY

    TEDDY Active Member

    Jan 2, 2007

    How sad it is to read these posts.I came from a diferent time.we had rifle clubs in our high schools.the schools kept the rifles,but we brought our own guns to school too.In the 60s the culture started to change.the socilists started to brain wash.Its ended up in things like the va.I believe if the students had scattered a lot would have servived.confusion would likely affected the shooter.this waiting to be killed is stupid.at 18 I was a machine gunner in naval aviation AOM3/C.do you think I would sit still.I would rather die trying.I fault the wishywashy administraters and syco docs.I have had a few armed confrontations.so I think I know what I am talking about.I am not a leo.
  19. insidious_calm

    insidious_calm Member

    Apr 24, 2004
    First of all, welcome to the High Road. If you are willing to be open minded and accept facts for what they are I think you'll find this thread "productive" for you. If you're trolling, well, not so much.

    I have not seen "circling the wagons" anywhere. I have seen a restatement of the facts that are usually used to refute the onslaught of emotionally based arguments that always follow such events. Your point fails to account for that fact. Those on the anti-gun side of this debate are ruled by emotion not logic. Becasue of that no amount of facts, nor anything sort of total "surrender" by the pro-gun side will ever be seen as reasonable.

    The key to prevailing is to continue the same methodology that has carried us these last 4-5 years. Point out that the fact DON'T support an anti-gun position. Point out that their arguments are emotionally based and therefore not reasonable. You simply can not win an argument against a person who is ruled by emotion on the subject.

    See the above response. In fact, allowing free people the ability to defend themselves is the only logical solution. Unfortunately logic fairs poorly against illogical people. Active solutions should include proposing new legislation that lifts the current overbearing restrictions from lawful citizens, proposing a school sponsored self defense/CCW course, and holding the governmetn officials accountable for failing to enter the shooters mental disability into the federal database as is required by law.

    This is true. Most likely not in this sense you inteded though. When you commit a crime against another person you are by definition violating their rights. If I shoot you I have NOT attacked your right to keep and bear a firearm. The attack against your right to a firearm is perpetrated by third party individuals who seek to use the crime as an excuse to do so. This is why gun control fails the logic test. It is simply illogical to say that restricting ME will prevent SOMEBODY ELSE from doing something.

    This is simply not true. Guns do not cause crime nor do they make it easier. People who are determined to do evil will do so regardless of laws or restrictions on objects. This is easily proven by incidents like 9/11 where box cutters were used, by the OK city bombing where everyday fertilizer was used, by the New York subway robber who doused people with gasoline and set them on fire, etc. ad infinitum.

    The fact is this nut job could have killed just as many people, just as easily, and just as quickly with a 2 1/2 gallon garden sprayer filled with gasoline and a grill lighter. Nobody was equiped with the tools or skillset needed to stop him so the end result would have been the same. The only difference would be a lack of "demand" for new legislation restricting the sale of gasoline.

    This simply isn't true. WORKABLE solutions are being proposed. You don't see them as workable because you are allowing emotion to drive your logic. More guns in the hands of law abiding citizens WILL work. It has everywhere it's been tried. If the Israeli professor were armed with something besides his hands he would have shot the scumbag instead of using his body to block a doorway.

    For that matter he is the only one so far to be seen as having done something PROACTIVE to stop the guy. That is the problem with what you are saying and what is wrong with the whole gun control movement. Everything they do or say is reactive. So many people have be entranced by this emotional vomit from the leftist/pacifist/communist/anti-gun types that noone has the courage, skillset, or tools to be proactive in these situations anymore.

    As for your comparison to airport security, the two are completely different. The secure areas of airports are far more than "gun free zones". Airport security areas are sterile environments with controlled access. Unless you want to turn college campuses into virtual prisons where EVERYONE has to go through airport type security prior to entering and even the exits are controlled then you cannot use it as an example. To the contrary, the "gun free zones" you are proposing are synonymous with "concentrated disarmed victim zones". Mass killings of people by shooters does not, has not, and can not occur when members of the targeted group are armed.

  20. nico

    nico Senior Member

    Dec 1, 2003
    Baltimore/Laurel, MD
    It seems like there were at least a few things that should have shown up in this guy's NICS check and some that would have if people followed through (ie: if one of the girls he had stalked pressed charges or got a restraining order). Scarborough just said that in 2005 he was declared a risk to himself and others and ordered to attend counseling by a judge. At the risk of being called a gun grabber, I think that should have disqualified him from buying a gun and should have shown up in his NICS check.

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