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Letting them divide us and selling each other out

Discussion in 'General Gun Discussions' started by Ragnar Danneskjold, Jan 2, 2013.

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  1. Ragnar Danneskjold

    Ragnar Danneskjold Member

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    A lot of the recent threads since Sandy Hook have made me think about some common and disturbing themes I'm seeing. The first is the apparent willingness of some gun owners to let the antis divide us into groups that are easier to conquer. Particularly regarding "mental health".

    Consider felons. As it stands persons convicted of felonies may not vote (though in 48 states they can try to get their voting rights back) and may not possess firearms. That sounds fine when you think of felonies as violent destructive crimes like murder, rape, armed robbery, etc. There is of course the opinion that if one has served their time in prison, once that debt has been paid their rights should be restored. That is my personal view. But the common belief in the general public and even among gun owners is that felons should not be able to possess firearms. The problem from that is fundamental: what is a felony and who decides who fits the description? The government. This is particularly distressing in that voting and firearms are two of the most important methods citizens have to control their government. And yet anyone who fits the "felon" description loses these rights, and thus has no say in how the government works.

    The fundamental problem lies in that the government can then pass laws to make all sorts of things felonies, and ever increase the amount of citizens who have lost their rights. They've divided the country into two groups: "Allowed guns and voting" and "not allowed guns or voting" and they can decide on a whim who fits into what group. Felonies are no longer extreme crimes like rape, murder, arson, etc. Now it includes everything from shoplifting items over a certain value to downloading music or software without a license. Even file sharing can cause someone to lose gun rights forever. The danger in this is very frightening. If the government feels too many people have guns, all they have to do is declare a few more things to be felonies and then those people lose their rights. And their rights to vote on it to appeal their fate.

    And now we're talking about letting them do that with mental health issues. People on this very forum are actively considering creating lists and databases of people who lose their gun rights if some doctor, psychiatrist, or panel decides they are mentally unfit. The creation of yet another "no guns allowed" box that anyone can be tossed into when the powers that be deem fit. Who knows where it could lead. Hold certain political beliefs? Mentally unfit, no guns allowed. Disagree with homosexuality? Mentally unfit, no guns allowed. Believe in creationism or some other religious doctrine? Mentally unfit, no guns allowed. Sure they won't make it as plain and obvious as that. But who's to say that "individualistic tendencies" or "distrust of authority" won't get warped into "paranoia" and thus label someone mentally unfit to have certain Constitutional rights for life.

    And hand in hand with letting the antis divide us is us dividing ourselves and selling each other out. I'm simply aghast that there are THR members who agree with restricting First Amendment rights such as video games in order to preserve their gun collections. Or hunters who are OK with banning AR15s so long as they get to keep their wood stock bolt gun. Revolver shooters who are totally willing to sell out semi auto owners and agree with a magazine limit just as long as their wheelguns are safe for another few years.

    We cannot let the antis divide us. And we cannot divide ourselves. The antis will take all of our rights little by little, inch by inch as the decades go by. They have patience. They don't mind waiting, as long as we keep losing a little bit at a time. The "I don't care if you restrict someone else or take what they have, as long as you leave me and mine alone for now" attitude is going to ruin us all.

    "Shall not be infringed" means exactly that. Stop selling each other out to keep what you have. And stop buying into the "we're only going to take guns from the felons/mentally unfit/______" line of BS that the antis keep selling us. Because before long, YOU will fit into that ______ and you won't have any way to fight it.
     
  2. bikerdoc

    bikerdoc Moderator Staff Member

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    Well said.
     
  3. JohnBT

    JohnBT Member

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    "There is of course the opinion that if one has served their time in prison, once that debt has been paid their rights should be restored. That is my personal view."

    I don't see it that way at all. The guy who robbed me in broad daylight 17 years ago went to jail with his two buddies for about 15 street robberies and a couple of corner markets. Now they're out. He hasn't repaid the $41 he stole, so his debt is not paid. He took my keys so I had to pay to have 3 doors house rekeyed, too. Am I not a part of society? Shouldn't I - and other victims - be considered when calculating that so-called debt? Of course we should. There's more to the equation than jail and prison time.

    John
    Member www.vcdl.org
    NRA Benefactor
     
  4. AlexanderA

    AlexanderA Member

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    What you're really saying is that we should muzzle people who don't agree with you on things such as the gun rights of felons, mental health issues, and even violent video games. I think you're taking an extreme libertarian viewpoint on these things. That's not necessarily bad, but not all gun owners are extreme libertarians. Just stay focussed on the anti-gun proposals at hand.
     
  5. huntsman

    huntsman Member

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    This is why I believe our greatest danger is not a mag limit or semi-auto gun ban but the banning of private sales, once everything has to go through a background check all .gov has to do is tweak the parameters of who is allowed to own guns to keep legal gun sales limited.
     
  6. BSA1

    BSA1 Member

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    The O.P. makes a good point about Federal and State government are passing laws to make all sorts of things felonies including non-violent offenses. I suspect most folks do not know what the definition of a felony is and, like JohnBT, do not realize most felony convictions are for non-violent non-person offenses.

    For example let's consider you have several old cars stored on property you own. To fellow car buffs these vehicles are classics waiting to be restored but to your neighbors and the local government it is a eyesore. You have stored the cars for years but the government passes a new law banning parking old cars on your property. They demand under the threat of fine and imprisonment that you remove all of the vehicles.

    You contest the law and finally you are charged with a criminal offense of maintaining a nusiance which is a felony. Foolishly believing the law does not apply to you because it should be "grandfathered" you take your case to court and you lose.

    Now, not only being forced to remove the cars, you are now a convicted felon and have lost your right to own firearms and the right to vote. This abuse of power is more common than you think. Ever hear of Home Owner Associations demanding the American flag not be flown in the homeowners front yard?

    No one supports giving violent offenders guns but you should understand what constitutes a felony crime.
     
  7. SouthernYankee

    SouthernYankee Member

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    It's the Gov't stupid...

    Any gun law is an act of self preservation for the Gov't. Our Founders were not concerned about hunting or self protection as we are - though they were and are valid considerations. Their primary concern was the concentration of power and that extension, the Federal Gov't. So here we find ourselves 200+ years later with a massive Federal entity and an almost unstoppable Exec. Branch (remember co-equal?). A few points: Federal Gridlock (good) - pretty much what the Founders wanted, unless we could really all agree on something leave it local. Powerful Executive (bad) - They feared a King or Dictator "President for Life" type. In this, "W" is as much to blame fellow conservatives, for he made a collectivization of power in his office as had never been before, but that was ok? NO. Power was meant to stay at the Local Level. Power is almost displayed in ANY society as might = Money or Votes BUT ALWAYS RAW FORCE! In Colonial times each and every village or settlement had a "Militia" for it's common defense/protection. Many guns were better than one, and dangers were myriad. Today, we like to believe, and are taught, our circumstances are different and that we are more civilized, indeed! We have a Federal Bureaucracy to make the Colonists shudder and Local power has all but evaporated - Big Money and Voter Corruption challenge even the most optimistic citizen. Other issues (ALL FEDERALLY DRIVEN) attack our most cherished foundations daily creating an emotional and mind numbing wave difficult for anyone to address. Local Power is how our Forefathers saw as a means to counterbalance this. The Federal Gov't was not to have a Standing Army in times of peace but Local Militia's were ALWAYS in place. That and fierce "Local-ism" kept balance and Centralized Power at bay. Human Nature never changes (sorry Utopian's) and our Forefathers knew this. People in power want to keep it and increase it so they will not be challenged. I could go on but will stop. GUN'S are the great game changer and the fundamental reason for the 2nd Amendmant. The men who wrote it were engaging in an untested governmental experiment and knew what it would take to protect and nurture it so it could thrive or die. Thrive it did, to become the Greatest Civilization known. I love our country, and now we see those who "understand and feel" alter the fundamentals of our greatness. We must at all cost resist these assaults, our Founders would definitely understand. Gos Bless the USA!

    Maybe I'm just crazy... could I have another cup of koolaide please?
     
    Last edited: Jan 2, 2013
  8. 2ifbyC

    2ifbyC Member

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    I too am dismayed at the THR members who put their own self-interests above the true meaning of the 2nd amendment. I don't own an AR-15 and don't plan to buy one. I rarely shoot 10 rounds from a magazine at one time. However, I am vehemently opposed to any more gun laws. One's right to choose how to defend yourself is far more important than my own personal preferences on gun usage. Even more disturbing is the defeatist attitude of many before the fight has begun.

    As for mental health and video games, I feel they are primarily points of discussion at this stage. They have taken the focus off gun control as the one and only solution. No new laws are being proposed about banning video games but many have reacted as such.

    I disagree about your views regarding felon/felonies. I have much more faith in our legal system. Felonies are serious crimes. Ignorance of the law is no excuse. It’s your duty to know whether the acts you are willing to commit are crimes and to what extent. Prepare to suffer the consequences of your actions including the right to vote and own guns. To think that more crimes will be classified as felonies for the intended purpose of ridding the populace of legally owing guns is a bit paranoid.
     
  9. GEM

    GEM Member

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    As a psychologist (blah, blah), the video game linkage is useless.

    There is a claimed overall priming of aggressive ideation (probably true for the very short time) and a very weak claim for actually producing violence in the normal population (under quite a bit of debate). The same experimental paradigms are used to show that:

    1. Video games
    2. Exposure to guns or images of the same
    3. Passages from holy books
    4. Images of folks of races you don't like

    all produce some aggressive thoughts.

    If you want to ban games - you can't differentiate from theory or results - guns.

    Wayne LaP. should know that. And you should if you argue for such.

    However, the evidence is weak that normal folks go off because of any of these. Folks with serious underlying pathologies can be channeled by such into evil actions or they use such to model what they would do - but their disturbance starts them on the path.

    Rampage killers who have been stopped have been know to worship and study Columbine. Thus the media is too blame?

    To conclude - the video game story doesn't help the RKBA if you know your experimental results.

    The gun - aggression linkage studies come out of the same labs as do the video game linkages.
     
  10. K9american

    K9american Member

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    One of several variations:

    "First they came for the socialists,
    and I didn't speak out because I wasn't a socialist.

    Then they came for the trade unionists,
    and I didn't speak out because I wasn't a trade unionist.

    Then they came for the Jews,
    and I didn't speak out because I wasn't a Jew.

    Then they came for me, and there was no one left to speak for me."

    Martin Niemoller 1892-1984
     
  11. BSA1

    BSA1 Member

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    Felonies are serious crimes.

    Classic textbook answer. In my state a felony is defined as punishable by more than one year in jail and $ 1,000 in fines.

    Ignorance of the law is no excuse.

    You are a very, very well read man if you know what every felony law is with your State and Federal government.

    Prepare to suffer the consequences of your actions including the right to vote and own guns.

    So you believe the best course of action is too cut a plea bargain to avoid losing your right to own guns and the right to vote with the government rather than defending your innocence. Hmmm, I need to be prepared to accept losing my rights for NOT committing a crime.
     
  12. Grey_Mana

    Grey_Mana Member

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    No.

    If you want 'us' to say united, you need a Narrative. First is a sympathetic speaker. Second is a Villain. Third is a clear, short, reasonable message.

    A woman who protected herself with her gun is a good speaker. A disabled veteran being bullied is a good speaker. Facts and logic don't persuade; emotional appeals from people vested with authority by virtue of their victimhood appeal.

    Violent felons and mentally unfit people are good villains. "Band together to protect the gun rights of the mentally unfit" is not a serious policy proposal. Trying to stake out a position so far outside the mainstream will only erode support. In any fight for the Narrative, if you are only willing to say nice things about your enemies, then you accept being cast as the Villain. Protecting video game companies (or their customers) is not a message.

    Who is your villain? Pick the wrong one, and you've gone beyond the pale, offending your target audience. In an ideal world, the teacher's union would own the blame for a murder-a-day in Baltimore and Chicago, or the Housing Authority. It isn't easy to pick a good villain. Right now, your bad-guy seems to be shadowy bully bureaucrats who low-information voters don't believe exist.

    This message is too far-fetched to get support: Hold certain political beliefs? Mentally unfit, no guns allowed. Disagree with homosexuality? Mentally unfit, no guns allowed. Believe in creationism or some other religious doctrine? Mentally unfit, no guns allowed.. That message doesn't scare enough people. You need a better message. 15 seconds of footage (with statistics overlaid) of baby-nappers, or home-invaders getting paroled, will get you support. Some whacko puts a few needles in a few jars of acetominophen, and middle-America fully backs sweeping inconveniences to opening their medicine. Find the right Narrative, the right reason to convince low-information voters why you having a gun is a good idea, and you've got a product you can sell.

    Separately, try to portray yourself as a winner protecting victims, not as a victim. America loves a winner. One commercial proudly showing gun owners as manly men and womanly women will do more to win over low-information voters than a thousand hours of Feinstein and Bloomberg's prattle. Think about how well Charlie Sheen weathered his meltdown, just by being an Alpha Male. Gun Ownership naturally fits with the Alpha image. You shouldn't need to worry about whether hunters or revolver owners will fight for you, you want them rushing to identify with you.
     
    Last edited: Jan 2, 2013
  13. Vern Humphrey

    Vern Humphrey Member

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    You're absolutely right. If the debt includes loss of civil rights, it isn't paid by mere prison time.
     
  14. AlexanderA

    AlexanderA Member

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    huntsman wrote:

    By saying this, you are admitting that there is indeed a "loophole" in the law. There are not two standards as to who is qualified to buy a gun. There is one standard, which can either be enforced (with background checks) or not enforced. The place to defend gun rights is at the level of the standards, not at the level of enforcement. Unenforced laws are bad for society, because they engender contempt for law in general. Either enforce it, or take it off the books entirely.
     
  15. beatledog7

    beatledog7 Member

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    If you don't know the analogy of building a fence around the spot where they feed the wild pigs, please learn it.

    Anyone who is free to walk the streets unsupervised should be free to own a gun and vote. Stated the other way around, if we are willing to declare that a person cannot own a gun or vote, then we must not also admit that it is unwise to let that person roam the streets unsupervised. He or she will be able to obtain a gun (illegally) and vote (in states where no ID is required) in spite of our declaration that he or she may not. Laws do not stop criminals--that's why we call them criminals. Rules and standards of conduct may not stop the mentally ill if their condition makes them incapable of recognizing and/or understanding them.

    So, if Joe or Sally can't be trusted to own a gun or to vote, why are we allowing them to roam our streets freely?

    Of course, government could take that concept and severely abuse it, and it does. As Ragnar notes, government need only pass a law or simply write a regulation that will never be voted on by elected representatives declaring some harmless and mundane human activity a felony, make it retroactive or place an unmeetable compliance timeframe on it, and thus turn millions of Americans into felons, stripping them of their right to vote and own a gun. If you don't think government makes laws and writes regulations with this exact plan in mind, you are naive. They're very good at offering a little handout that we say we want while snipping off a little piece of our liberty with the other hand.

    Two courses of action are required:

    1) Make sure anyone deemed unfit to own a gun or to vote is not going about free and unsupervised.
    2) Undo the massive bureaucracies that threaten our freedom by turning the routine activities of people they don't like into felonies so they can declare those people felons and rob them of their powers (voting and bearing arms) to oppose the bureaucracies.
     
    Last edited: Jan 2, 2013
  16. Cosmoline

    Cosmoline Member

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    If you hear voices from Mars in your head telling you to do things or see hallucinations when you're *off* drugs then no, I don't think you should have firearms. Or sharp sticks. That's not a "pre crime" proposal, it's obvious. And it's usually not tricky to tell the real nutters. They're roaming our streets in every town, screaming at their reflection in the window, assaulting people and biting the ankles of all and sundry. I've met a few over the years *literally* frothing at the mouth. Something to do with their meds needing adjustment, apparently.

    But if you're depressed or fall into some other category of illness which poses no danger *TO OTHERS* then I don't have a problem with you being armed.

    The problem is our laws draw no such distinction. If you were committed because you were depressed about your parents dying you're prohibited the same as someone who's dog tells him to kill babies with a steak knife. That needs to change.

    Our CURRENT gun laws are prohibiting people who should not be prohibited and permitting people who in no way shape or form should ever be allowed to have a dangerous weapon. This would be a good opportunity to refine them.

    Originally all felonies were punished one way--immediate death. So there was no problem, and death ended *all* rights. Long term prison was reserved for disfavored royalty. When the idea of prisons for felons emerged in the 19th century, the concurrent problem emerged of what to do with those who survived their sentences.

    I don't really favor a revival of rights for felons. But I do favor reducing the number of felonies and quasi-felonies particularly at the federal level. Federal felonies apart from treason didn't even exist until modern times. Nor did federal law enforcement. And that's a big part of the problem. Having built Hoover's beast, it must be fed.
     
    Last edited: Jan 2, 2013
  17. huntsman

    huntsman Member

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    I'm just speculating on what the plan is, My only standard would be citizenship and there should be no background check or 4473.
     
    Last edited: Jan 2, 2013
  18. SilentStalker

    SilentStalker Member

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    Wow, this is interesting stuff. It reminds me of some discussions we had in class while I was in college. Anyways something I want to point out is that the very laws/regulations that you guys are talking about which could/could not make someone a criminal is exactly what they are doing.

    In a short time we will find out if any modern sporting rifle will be legal. If they make them illegal to own, they will of course provide you with a method of turning them in and getting off scott free, or they will try and confiscate them some other time, probably not door to door. Think about it, many of you would not give them up and after your turn in for amnesty period, anyone still possessing such an arm would be deemed a criminal. That means you might get away with owning one if you just keep it in your house to look at but we all know that is not anything worth owning. So, let's assume you have skated by and managed to keep one of your ARs and then one day you decide to go shooting on some of your land. While you are traveling to your land to shoot, you are pulled over, the AR you kept is found, and guess what, now you are a convicted felon and have lost the privilege to vote and own any firearms.

    What the OP talked about in the very beginning is exactly what the gov is doing and they are continuously extending their reach of power IMO. This is and of itself makes them an enemy of the U.S. because they are clearly abusing the power and the constitution to their own ends. The problem has been that we as citizens have let them get to this point of abuse. Nobody has gotten together in large enough numbers to offer any kind of resistance and until that happens this abuse will continue to go on unabated. Who was it that once said, "Once a government fails to serve its people then it should cease to exist," or something like that. I forgot who said that but it is very true. It is our duty as citizens to protect our freedoms and uphold the law just as much as it is for those placed in office and abroad.
     
  19. alsaqr

    alsaqr Member

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  20. Cosmoline

    Cosmoline Member

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    ? Of course we have. We've been blocking anti-gun laws for decades and getting pro-gun laws enacted. As a result there is no chance of an AU or UK style ban in the immediate future at the federal level. Let's not get in too much of a panic here.
     
  21. klyph

    klyph Member

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    The founders could have included caveats to allow govt the ability to restrict the rights of certain people such as criminals, and the mentally unstable. The reason why they didn't is because the king of England considered theme mentally unfit criminals. We can talk about who we personally believe should not possess natural rights, but we cannot deny that the second amendment prohibits govt from infringing the rights of the people. All people, no exceptions.
     
  22. JustinJ

    JustinJ Member

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    Different views among gun owners is not "antis dividing us". We don't have to fall in line with your views or let anybody else think for us just because we like guns. Sorry, I'm not a fan of "group think".
     
  23. Vern Humphrey

    Vern Humphrey Member

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    Does the 13th Amendment preclude criminals being sentenced to hard labor?
     
  24. michaelbsc

    michaelbsc Member

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    I think the bottom line about much of this is that for the past couple of hundred years the rule of thumb has been that if there's no law specifically regulating or prohibiting something then it's simply not regulated.

    Today the elites want to change the social contract so that unless something is specifically allowed then it's prohibited by fiat.
     
  25. Ryanxia

    Ryanxia Member

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    Well said.

    The way I see it there shouldn't be any background check at all. If someone is too dangerous to own a firearm they shouldn't be let out of prison to begin with. If someone is mentally unstable enough that they might hurt others, they should be cared for in a facility or have a legal guardian who will take the responsibility of making sure they don't do others harm. Would that statement actually work? Probably not but kind of how I see it.

    In a country where one of my only freedoms is to own firearms why I should have to do anything but walk in a store and pay cash is beyond me.
     
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