Merry Christmas.

 

 


Sources

Kenneth D. Kochanek, Jiaquan Xu, Sherry L. Murphy, Arialdi M. Minino, and Hsiang-Ching Kung. “Deaths: Final Data for 2009.” National Vital Statistics Reports. Dec. 19, 2011.

Christpher S. Koper. “Crime Gun Risk Factors: Buyer, Seller, Firearm, and Transaction Characteristics Associated with Gun Trafficking and Criminal Gun Use.” Jerry Lee Center of Criminology, University of Pennsylvania. 2007.

Category: Really, really bad calls, Think Tank

Please use the comments to demonstrate your own ignorance, unfamiliarity with empirical data and lack of respect for scientific knowledge. Be sure to create straw men and argue against things I have neither said nor implied. If you could repeat previously discredited memes or steer the conversation into irrelevant, off topic discussions, it would be appreciated. Lastly, kindly forgo all civility in your discourse . . . you are, after all, anonymous.

49 Responses to “Fact Check: Guns in America”

  1. msnthrop says:

    It shouldn’t be this hard to deal with this problem. I figure the way forward would be requiring everyone (above the age of 18? 14? 12?) in a particular household to hold a gun license if a gun was going to be in the home. This license would be renewed yearly and would require say 20 hours of classroom/gun range training for shotguns/hunting rifles, 40 hours for semi-automatic rifles/handguns for all license holders every year, a relatively invasive background check which required the gathering of letters of recommendation from a medical doctor and possibly others, proof that you possess a gun safe and trigger locks, and an extensive insurance plan that would cover your liability in case the gun was ever stolen and used to commit a crime. I wouldn’t make the penalties for not having a license particularly harsh at first, your guns would be confiscated, and and a small fine would be applied. You would still be able to acquire the license and get your guns back I suppose, if you passed the background test. After a decade or more those penalties could become more invasive. The key would be to bring the NRA on board…they provide a lot of training programs already and would stand to profit from such a licensing scheme. An additional incentive would be that it kind of guarantees a long term market for gun makers (vaguely like the way the healthcare bill solidified the market for health insurance companies).

    All of this would make owning a gun significantly more expensive and difficult to acquire. Of course the gun show loop hole would have to go, and penalties for selling guns to unlicensed citizens would be pretty severe, but overall I would expect this would decrease the number of guns in the country over the long run. Gun ownership has been dropping for decades now and this kind of regulation would trim out those people who bought a gun for “self defense” but actually have no idea how to use a gun responsibly (as in they would get rid of them, or at least get some training on what to do with them), while retaining the “rights” of others who own multiple guns and purchase them for emotional reasons (as in this defines what team I’m on or I’m an endorphin junkie that gets a little high shooting guns). Anyway, no one would need a license to just to the gun range a pop off a few rounds.

    If it was decided we needed 100,000′s of additional security guards in schools then the licensing fees could simply be increased to pay a significant portion, if not all, of that cost. The majority of gun owners think of themselves as responsible citizens who do want some level of gun control to exist and such a plan, when combine with the market incentives that brings the NRA/gun makers into the fold, could probably get passed after a couple of years of legislative planning, lobbying, and marketing at the national scale. It would be an increase in the government security apparatus, which always makes me uncomfortable, but it could all be folded into Homeland Security somehow I suppose. Any way the proposed legislation I’ve heard discussed, assault rifle bans, getting rid of high capacity clips, don’t seem like they would be of much use in really tackling how easy it is to access guns at the moment…this might.

  2. jb.mcmunn says:

    I am interested in the assertion in #2, i.e., “unless Washington acts”.

    What, pray tell, do they think Washington can do? Washington declared “war” on both poverty and drugs 4 decades ago and it’s worse than ever.

    You can’t wave a wand and fix a sociocultural situation. If you want a model with a successful track record look at smoking, but be aware that this isn’t going away overnight and that smoking is greatly diminished but not eradicated. However, compared with efforts to reduce poverty and drug abuse it’s an outstanding success even though tobacco is freely available to any adult.

    I can’t get my mind around the internal inconsistency of the world view that the government should stay out of our lives except when it shouldn’t. A woman has the right to decide whether or not to carry a fetus to term but she is apparently incapable of deciding whether or not to drink a large soda in NYC.

    “Real change can happen only when we commit ourselves to rebuilding civil society in America, meaning a society based on family, religion, civic and social institutions, and peaceful cooperation through markets. We cannot reverse decades of moral and intellectual decline by snapping our fingers and passing laws.” Ron Paul

    The full commentary is worth reading and reminds us of Franklin’s observation about people who trade liberty for safety. http://paul.house.gov/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=2037:government-security-is-just-another-kind-of-violence&catid=64:2012-texas-straight-talk&Itemid=69

  3. Moss says:

    @jb,

    I agree with most of what u say but we need rules. Using smoking as an example of success is instructive since I am sure the use diminished only after the facts, also known to some as truth, was extracted from the industry. I do believe that industry paid in excess of 200 Billion.

    Taking a common sense approach on rules governing guns is not going to infringe on any liberty of anyone.

  4. RetiredinSoBe says:

    To jb.mcmunn,
    W.r.t. your question as to what Washington can do:

    We could learn from Australia’s experience with enacting tougher gun control laws in 1996:

    http://www.slate.com/blogs/crime/2012/12/16/gun_control_after_connecticut_shooting_could_australia_s_laws_provide_a.html

  5. SEG says:

    Various proposed gun control laws will never stop a crazy individual from shooting people. Connecticut has among the most restrictive gun laws in the nation and the increased gun restrictions did not help. As evident from some newspaper publishing a map of all gun owners in two counties the real goal of many is to simply ban or intimidate legitimate owners of guns.

    ~~~

    BR: 1. The type of gun used in Connecticut was under consideration to be outlawed, but thanks to pressure from gun lobby, that law never passed
    2. You can make it more difficult to kill 6 year olds if a military grade semi automatic assault weapon wasn’t sold in WalMart and available to just about anyone
    3. You make the case for national gun laws: State gun laws are ineffective if you can go over the border to get anything else.
    4. As we saw in China, mentally unbalanced people are everywhere. The difference of course being that when a cray person stabs 22 children they all survived.
    5. Yes, we need much more aggressive medical treatment of mental health problems in the USA>

  6. ThatsNotAll says:

    Merry Christmas BR

    #1: Do you agree with me that we want guns in the hands of the right people and we do not want guns in the hands of the wrong people?

    How accurately can society determine who the “wrong” people are? Do we err on the side of freedom by allowing some bad people to get arms or do we restrict the freedom and liberty of law abiding citizens?

    #2: Do you believe it is possible to add significant restrictions to gun ownership without amending the Constitution?

    Do you believe the 2nd amendment matters in the discussion? What do the words “shall not be infringed” mean to you? Does the Constitution have any meaning if our policymakers decide it can be ignored when its prescriptions are no longer convenient?

    #3: How do you reconcile America’s love affair with alcohol, despite that drugs contribution to murder, death and social failure?

    Are we as a society going to selectively choose which harmful elements to eliminate or are we truly desirous to eliminate all “bad” things?

  7. Frilton Miedman says:

    ThatsNotAll Says:
    December 25th, 2012 at 2:57 pm
    ” #1: Do you agree with me that we want guns in the hands of the right people and we do not want guns in the hands of the wrong people? ”

    - Start by ensuring all gun sales have mandatory background checks, currently 40% of all guns are sold without one , the “wrong people” will naturally go this route, it’s good for profits of gun manufacturers that pay Wayne Lapierre’s salary.

    ~~~

    “#2: Do you believe it is possible to add significant restrictions to gun ownership without amending the Constitution?”

    - How are we able to ban fully automatics, stinger missiles & nuclear warheads?…Let’s do the same with assault weapons & extended mags – You can have a gun to hunt & protect yourself, no to maximize dead count.

    ~~~

    “Are we as a society going to selectively choose which harmful elements to eliminate or are we truly desirous to eliminate all “bad” things?”

    - YES.

    This is why we have controlled substances – we infringe the freedom of the whole to own plutonium, nuclear weapons or Anthrax to ensure that it doesn’t fall into the wrong hands.

    Assault weapons and extended mags aren’t a necessity, I don’t know any hunter that needs 30+ round mags capable of multiple rounds per second to hit a deer…if you’re that bad, give up & go to the meat section, you’re a hazard to other hunters.

    For self defense, 6 rounds is more than adequate to scare off, maim or kill an attacker. (who probably bought his gun without a background check)

  8. bart says:

    “How are we able to ban fully automatics, stinger missiles & nuclear warheads?…Let’s do the same with assault weapons & extended mags – You can have a gun to hunt & protect yourself, no to maximize dead count.”

    Excluding very large magazines, there’s effectively zero difference between assault rifles and large caliber hunting rifles.
    Good luck.

  9. whskyjack says:

    Nice bunch of links BR, to get other perspectives I also suggest http://www.guncite.com/

    They have a huge number of links on the issue. If nothing else some of your pro gun rights could sharpen their arguments and your pro gun control crowd would understand wtf is being talked about when they do.

    As for myself I investigated this subject and argued it into the ground years ago.

    Where I come down

    1 we have a second amendment right to own fire arms. But just as we can’t threaten the President and fall back on free speech or plan a bank robbery with our buddies and excuse it under right of assembly so to are there limits on the second amendment.

    2 We have a problem with out of control firearms, denial just makes you look stupid, To continue down the road we are currently on will lead to greater breakdown of society as we separate into little armed camps. So I’m pro civilization and civilization includes regulation so we can all get the maximum benefit out of life.

    Personally I think manual action rifles and shot guns fulfill both the 2nd amendment and defense requirements. IMO everything else is just playing with dangerous toys.

    Regulate them, place strict control on use. If you want to own a semiautomatic with a detachable clip you need a class III lisence and it must be stored at a class III facility and may only be used there.

    If you start by regulating semiautomatic fire arms with detachable clips you by pass “what’s an assault weapon” sillyness then you can make a case by case exception for legitimate hunting rifles.

    We need an answer and it will take compromise . I personally think we should take the nuts on bothsides and lock them out of the discussion. The NRA has no spot at the table but then neither does Bill Maher or Michael Moore.
    It is time the adults stepped in.

    Jack

  10. whskyjack says:

    Real hunters use bolt action rifles, better accuracy.
    Little boys use semi automatics, spray and pray

  11. Frilton Miedman says:

    bart Says:
    December 25th, 2012 at 5:05 pm
    ” “How are we able to ban fully automatics, stinger missiles & nuclear warheads?…Let’s do the same with assault weapons & extended mags – You can have a gun to hunt & protect yourself, no to maximize dead count.”

    Excluding very large magazines, there’s effectively zero difference between assault rifles and large caliber hunting rifles.
    Good luck.”

    ~~~

    So, you’re saying a large caliber hunting rifle is made for accurate rapid fire kills the same way a .223 is.

    OK, I’ll play that hand.

    Let’s regulate quantity of individual purchases of ammo as well as large cap mags, only allowing bulk purchases for those who have legitimate purposes for buying large amounts and keep a log of where/when they were used.

    Maybe we should just regulate any carbine or high performance weapon designed to handle the heat of repeat fire..

    The only people who can’t see solutions are the people who don’t want to see solutions.

  12. whskyjack says:

    “The only people who can’t see solutions are the people who don’t want to see solutions.”

    That is worth stealing for a sig file.

    Jack

  13. JohnathanStein says:

    Many of the “facts” in this “fact check” are twisted, incomplete or outright biased. Try these on for size:

    Fact #1: 268 Americans are killed by doctors every day, the 6th leading cause of death in the United States.
    http://www.justice.org/cps/rde/justice/hs.xsl/8677.htm

    Fact #2: 392,000 Americans will be killed by medical mistake during President Obama’s second term in office, unless Washington acts.
    http://www.justice.org/cps/rde/justice/hs.xsl/8677.htm

    Fact #3: Due to a legal loophole, no one will be held accountable for nearly 100% of all such deaths. When reported, there is severe unreporting.
    http://www.yale.edu/yjhple/issues/vix-i1-win09/docs/feature.pdf

    Fact #4: Records of medical mistake are kept sealed and out of the public eye; 1 in 4 hospital patients are harmed.
    http://www.propublica.org/article/qa-marty-makary-m.d.-author-of-unaccountable

    Fact #5: Medical mistake is the 5th or 6th most common cause of death.
    http://www.propublica.org/article/qa-marty-makary-m.d.-author-of-unaccountable

    Fact #6: There is no federal penalty for underreporting death by medical mistake.
    (Assumed — no source.)

    Fact #7: Since 1982, THREE MILLION people have been killed by medical mistake.
    http://www.justice.org/cps/rde/justice/hs.xsl/8677.htm

    Fact #8: Among OECD nations, the U.S. is below both the average and median suicide rate; other nations account for 75% of all suicide deaths.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_countries_by_suicide_rate
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Organisation_for_Economic_Co-operation_and_Development

    Fact #9: Every day, approximately 105 Americans take their own life; the U.S. suicide rate is 350% greater than the homicide rate. Also, 90% percent of all people who die by suicide have a diagnosable psychiatric disorder at the time of their death.
    http://www.cdc.gov/nchs/fastats/lcod.htm
    http://www.afsp.org/index.cfm?fuseaction=home.viewpage&page_id=050fea9f-b064-4092-b1135c3a70de1fda

    Fact #10: Firearms account for 50 percent of all suicides; 83 percent of gun-related deaths in these homes are the result of a suicide.
    http://www.afsp.org/index.cfm?fuseaction=home.viewpage&page_id=050fea9f-b064-4092-b1135c3a70de1fda

    BOTTOM LINE: There isn’t any balance in gun-related reporting. Positive news stores of gun-related self-defense and/or crime prevention is COMPLETELY missing.

    NOTABLE FACT: There is little-to-no reporting or analysis of psychiatric drug related shootings; though there is an online reference here: http://www.ssristories.com/index.php

  14. bart says:

    Frilton Miedman Says:

    So, you’re saying a large caliber hunting rifle is made for accurate rapid fire kills the same way a .223 is.

    OK, I’ll play that hand.

    bart: No what I said was: “Excluding very large magazines, there’s effectively zero difference between assault rifles and large caliber hunting rifles.” And I should expand it to the huge majority of just plain rifles. A .22 can be quite lethal.

    Let’s regulate quantity of individual purchases of ammo as well as large cap mags, only allowing bulk purchases for those who have legitimate purposes for buying large amounts and keep a log of where/when they were used.

    Maybe we should just regulate any carbine or high performance weapon designed to handle the heat of repeat fire..

    bart: I have no problem with eliminating large magazines, although it would be nice to have them available for temporary rental at ranges. I had a fun time renting and firing full automatic machine guns once in Vegas, which was not terribly unlike renting a very high performance car or taking a course at a high performance driving school

    The problem with limiting bulk ammo sales is that the Lanza type events don’t use much ammo of a single caliber, and there are usually multiple guns besides assault rifles. Plus 3 or 4 purchases of 25 or 50 rounds at different stores would probably be enough to do what he did.
    And, his mother probably could have qualified for bulk purchases anyhow.

    And again, I note that way more murders involve handguns, than assault rifles and all rifles (and shotguns etc.) put together… which again are (excluding large magazines) very similar to hunting rifles. And even .22 caliber rifles can easily kill.

    I believe you’re also unaware of how most modern semi-automatic hunting rifles (or even .22s) have little problem with accurate rapid fire. And I strongly suspect that psychos like Lanza don’t exactly use semi-automatic rifles or handguns with careful aiming either… but even if they are then the very rapid fire issue becomes null and void.

    I wish that at least a few of the ones more heavily into gun control would think out the issues, or even be aware of them. For example, with even a little practice a magazine can be changed in 2-3 seconds and probably less… so even the large capacity magazines are not the very large issue that some think (and I’m still against them, just in case).

    Some FBI stats from 2011, murders by weapon type:

    http://www.nowandfutures.com/images/murders_guns_etc2011.png

  15. bart says:

    “The only people who can’t see solutions are the people who don’t want to see solutions.”

    You mean like Sarbanes Oxley, or what Brooksley of the CFTC wanted, or Prohibition, or even the bogus assault rifle ban under Clinton which basically didn’t work at all? /sarcasm

    My point is that your quote doesn’t just apply to one side… and of any area, not just guns.

  16. mmcnelly says:

    thanks Barry… this is a very serious issue. we’re not all idiots.

  17. bart says:

    1. About 4 times that many are killed with cars, and about 9 times that many due to iatrogenic issues. And if only rifles (including assault rifles) are counted, the number drops to under 1,500.

    2. About 150,000 will be killed with cars during the same period, and about 500,000 due to iatrogenic issues. My primary point is “where’s the huge outcry and demand for change for them?”

    3. Should be fixed.

    4. And expecting that to substantially change with a law is expecting way too much, especially amongst the criminal or psycho elements of the culture.

    5. Should be helped if background checks are required at gun shows and similar.

    6. Not enough hard facts to comment on, plus it basically seems like a repeat of point #3.

    7. That one almost totally works against gun control. It is apparently saying that laws don’t make a large difference in mass shootings.

    8. As many others have noted, guns and gun ownership is a cultural issue. Plus, as few seem to have even recognized, the majority of mass shootings involve psych meds and/or ‘mental illness’.

    9. Yes, of course – guns are way ‘easier’ to use than swords or fists or whatever and the US has more of them, it’s a math certainty and a ‘duh’ that more will be murdered with them. And the US probably has well over 20x of its population on psych meds too, and a pharma-co establishment that’s much stronger than the gun lobby. To ignore that data and connection is far from wise.

    10. Yes, of course. The huge majority of gun owners and NRA members don’t have “kill!, kill!” tattoos stenciled all over the bodies either. /sarcasm

    ~~~

    BR: The automobile analogy is perfect — drivers and gun owners have similarities — these are legitimate tools with risks that run with them. I suggest we register,license, and insure guns and owners the same way. See this.

  18. Frilton Miedman says:

    bart Says:
    December 25th, 2012 at 8:06 pm
    Frilton Miedman Says:
    “…. there’s effectively zero difference between assault rifles and large caliber hunting rifles.”

    ~~~

    So, you’re saying a large caliber hunting rifle is made for accurate rapid fire kills the same way a .223 is.

    As for the rest, an assault weapons, extended mag ban & ammo limits would have limited deaths in VT, Aurora, Newtown and numerous others…all those handguns that are involved in crimes – see #5 on the opening topic, 80% is a big number….time to stop letting anyone, even names on the FBI watch-list, buy guns.

    It will harm gun MFG profits at a price of fewer deaths per year.

  19. Frilton Miedman says:

    bart Says:
    December 25th, 2012 at 8:32 pm
    ” 1. About 4 times that many are killed with cars, ..”

    If we used guns as frequently as we drive, this would be alarming.

  20. bart says:

    Ok Frilton, got it.

    You apparently want to ban all guns, and seemingly don’t want to view any other solutions, etc. etc.

    .
    .
    .
    .
    Requoted:

    “The problem with limiting bulk ammo sales is that the Lanza type events don’t use much ammo of a single caliber, and there are usually multiple guns besides assault rifles. Plus 3 or 4 purchases of 25 or 50 rounds at different stores would probably be enough to do what he did.
    And, his mother probably could have qualified for bulk purchases anyhow.

    And again, I note that way more murders involve handguns, than assault rifles and all rifles (and shotguns etc.) put together… which again are (excluding large magazines) very similar to hunting rifles. And even .22 caliber rifles can easily kill.

    I believe you’re also unaware of how most modern semi-automatic hunting rifles (or even .22s) have little problem with accurate rapid fire. And I strongly suspect that psychos like Lanza don’t exactly use semi-automatic rifles or handguns with careful aiming either… but even if they are then the very rapid fire issue becomes null and void.

    I wish that at least a few of the ones more heavily into gun control would think out the issues, or even be aware of them. For example, with even a little practice a magazine can be changed in 2-3 seconds and probably less… so even the large capacity magazines are not the very large issue that some think”

  21. wally says:

    Insanity: doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.
    -Albert Einstein (attributed)

    What we are doing now about guns has repeatedly been proven to not work. Time to do it differently.
    It is amazing how many arguments by pro-guns people completely miss the point. They change the subject; they say nothing can be done; they try to make technical jargon arguments; they deny the facts; they invent other fanciful ideas for doing mass killing as though that exonerates guns; they say they have to defend themselves from their own government at the same time they argue for a stronger military… but mostly they say that more of the same will suddenly reverse the whole picture. And above all, they refuse to own up to the fact that with rights come responsibilities.

  22. Frilton Miedman says:

    bart Says:
    December 25th, 2012 at 10:29 pm
    “Ok Frilton, got it.

    You apparently want to ban all guns, and seemingly don’t want to view any other solutions, etc. etc. ”

    ~~~

    Quote my stating that.

    You should probably go back and actually read what I said.

    Limitations on ammo sales, banning assault weapons & extended mags, registering transactions and background checks isn’t a “ban on all guns”.

    You’re mingling pseudo-fact with melodramatic all-or-none posturing, trying to weave a point into it that it’s pointless to do anything at all.

    Again, the only people who can’t see solutions are the people who don’t want to see solutions.

  23. bart says:

    Yep, a huge gap exists, apparently due to lack of a real education on real world issues. I can’t even tell, Frilton, where your viewpoints are since you completely failed to address most of my various points – and then you complain when I say that you seem to want to ban all guns.

    All I get are zero or non answers to the various points, like the one about the major problem with bulk ammo sales limitations that will do nothing about psychos like Lanza, plus that bulk ammo sales totally fails to deal with other gun murders that only involve a few bullets or even just one.

    Same with the actual issue about extended mags and mass shootings, or how fast standard sized mags can be changed in the real world. You don’t even acknowledge that I think a ban on them is fine, nor that I agree on background checks at gun shows. And then there’s the issue about how close assault rifles are to most other semi-automatic hunting rifles (and that banning assault rifles ignores that other semi-automatic rifles would easily substitute for assault rifles with psychos like Lanza), nor that even semi-auto .22s are lethal.

    In other words, you bring up points and I address them and prove that in the real world that they won’t work, and the points are completely ignored. And then you complain that I don’t want to see solutions because I’ve shot down your proposals?

    The issues just plain aren’t as easy to resolve as you seem to believe, as shown by things like the failure of the Clinton ban on assault rifles. If case you didn’t see the issue, it’s simply that the difference between assault rifles and other semi-auto rifles is very small – the Clinton law defined assault rifles so poorly that manufacturers just dropped things like a bayonet mount and flash suppressor, just making them closer to standard semi-auto hunting rifles.
    And then someone else says to ban all semi-auto rifles and go back to single shot ones, which yet again fails to address semi-auto handguns and how much they have been there in all the mass shootings, and are about 50% of all murders… and then you and others wonder why I thought that you want to ban all guns or perhaps just all semi-autos? I simply and honestly can’t tell since the positions taken just plain don’t hold up in the real world.

    On top of that, no one has even vaguely acknowledged the largest mass murder in all of US history in Bath Michigan in the 1920s, where *no* guns were used at all – just explosives. If you or others want to really resolve the problem, you must address the cultural issues and psychos, etc etc.

    And no one is apparently able to see that, but they sure are able to avoid my various real world points and pretend that their narratives are facts, while also alleging that I refuse to see solutions (and even ignore where I’m in agreement like on gun show checks and banning large capacity magazines).

    Fine – ban assault rifles 100% and then see what happens with mass shootings/murders *in this culture* (which is not all that similar to Australia or Japan etc.). I sincerely hope you’re right that the killings drop very substantially, but I;m almost certain that it will not work… and then you and others will probably try to ban more guns in the mistaken belief that it’s guns themselves.

    Guns don’t kill people, people do – of course unless you’ve seen a gun jump up and shoot and kill by itself. /sarcasm

    If you don’t actually address cultural issues and psycho types and psych meds, etc. etc. etc., then you’re not addressing the basic problems that are at the root of the situations, and are basically doomed to failure again and again – as the actual history of the last few decades in the US proves.

  24. bart says:

    “What we are doing now about guns has repeatedly been proven to not work. Time to do it differently.”

    Fine, and go for it (seriously). But what about the failure to actually and directly address my main points about the cultural issues (the US is not Japan, etc.) or psychos and psych meds, or even the huge real world holes in the various proposals. It’s fine to say that stuff has failed to work and I (guardedly) agree, but how about solid real world proposals without huge holes?

    The only people who can’t see solutions are the people who don’t want to see or even propose real world solutions or do anything but talk narratives or hope, and can’t even see real world holes, as documented.

  25. bart says:

    How many anti-gun folk approve of this invasion of privacy?
    Are all gun owners really the same as sex offenders?

    Newspaper Posts Gun Owners’ Names
    http://news.yahoo.com/blogs/abc-blogs/newspaper-publishes-gun-owners-names-addresses-215214269–abc-news-topstories.html

  26. perpetual_neophyte says:

    bart – I think you are coming from a similar place I am on this issue. I posted several comments in this thread along similar lines:
    http://www.ritholtz.com/blog/2012/12/45-years-on-the-treadmill/

    I think you and I agree that if the goal is a meaningful reduction in gun-related homicides:

    * Most gun control advocates would be well served to better understand the topic. You can’t write effective gun control laws if you don’t know anything about the actual guns themselves. It’s like trying to write effective bank fraud laws when you don’t know anything about the operational aspects of securitization or mortgage origination.

    * A ban on future sales of magazines holding more than 10 rounds without confiscation of those (millions?) already in legal circulation will not have a meaningful impact other than to drive up prices of existing legally-owned magazines. However, if a 30-round PMag quadruples in price, it’s still only about $60.

    * An “assault weapons” ban similar to the expired Clinton-era Federal AWB or the ones still in existence in California and Connecticut will not have a meaningful impact as new AR-style rifles like the Bushmaster used in Newtown are perfectly legal to buy because of the semi-nonsensical wording of those laws

    * Banning only future sales of newly-made firearms-type and/or magazines that are involved in a tiny minority of firearms-related homicides without addressing the millions already in legal circulation will not have a meaningful impact on the number of firearms-related homicides

    In other words, if you want to make a meaningful impact on the number of firearms-related homicides, you must go FARTHER than the Clinton/California/Connecticut style AWBs. If a gun-control proponent wants to cite Japan’s and Australia’s firearms-related homicide rates then they must acknowledge that those nations passed laws which effected *existing legally-owned firearms* via effective confiscation.

    The gun control advocates should recognize that if their goal is an Australian or Japanese experience, they have to be honest that – Yes, they do eventually want to come and take your guns away. I can respect that position, whether or not I agree with it. I cannot respect the position of someone that thinks a Clinton/California/Connecticut-style AWB will make a meaningful reduction in firearms-related homicides.

    Alternatively, if you would like to meaningfully reduce the number of firearms-related _deaths_ then you should be focused on the mental health issue as there are twice as many suicides using firearms as there are homicides. And I’d be willing to bet a fair sum that the number of “assault rifles” used in those cases are next to nil.

  27. Frilton Miedman says:

    wally Says:
    December 25th, 2012 at 11:04 pm
    Insanity: doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.
    -Albert Einstein (attributed)

    ~~~

    Indeed.

  28. Frilton Miedman says:

    bart Says:
    December 26th, 2012 at 7:12 am
    ” Fine, and go for it (seriously). But what about the failure to actually and directly address my main points about the cultural issues (the US is not Japan, etc.) or psychos and psych meds, ….”

    ~~~

    Ah, yes, you must be referring to the 40% decline in violent crimes since 1970, while strangely, mass shooting deaths have surged.

    It couldn’t possibly have anything to do with the NRA assuring no background checks on 40% of firearm sales, the saturation of assault weapons & over-sized mags.

    It’s ’cause Americans are nuts…video games…movies…anything but acknowledging empirical data.

  29. bart says:

    Ah yes, you must be referring to all the mass shootings and the relationship to psych meds since 1970… ooops, no – ignored again.
    I also note that you changed the topic from ‘guns/firearms/murder’ to ‘violent crime’ – sorry, that dog doesn’t hunt.

    Perhaps you’re referring to how different the culture of the US is from Japan or Australia… ooops, no – ignored again.
    Perhaps you think that the US=Japan=Australia=Europe=Russia etc, and everyone is equal? /sarcasm

    Can’t deal with simple facts, again.
    … especially including my proven points about high similarity between assault rifles and hunting rifles (excluding high cap mags) and your likely opinion that you want to ban them all, given that you’re never responded to the point;
    … and also including that I’ve already said multiple times that I agree that high cap mags should go away, while continuing to note that it’s very unlikely it will make a significant difference on mass murders since it’s trivial and fast (under 2-3 seconds) to swap to another 10 shot clip.

    How cool that you have to attack the NRA about background checks, since you know that I and the huge majority of NRA members do want and approve of them at gun shows, etc. Your point is – yet again – null and void due to worshiping at the altar of spin and logical fallacies.

    Here’s another to ignore or denigrate etc.:
    Guns don’t kill people, people do – of course unless you’ve seen a gun jump up and shoot and kill a person all by itself. /sarcasm

  30. JohnathanStein says:

    Last year, according to the FBI, one (1) person was killed with a rifle in the WHOLE STATE of Connecticut.
    http://www.fbi.gov/about-us/cjis/ucr/crime-in-the-u.s/2011/crime-in-the-u.s.-2011/tables/table-20

    This year, over two dozen people were murdered by a mentally ill person on Fanupt, a psychiatric drug reluctantly approved by the FDA, known to induce violent behavior and a list of violence-related side-effects as long as your arm.
    http://www.businessinsider.com/adam-lanza-taking-antipsychotic-fanapt-2012-12
    http://doublecheckmd.com/EffectsDetail.do?dname=Fanapt&sid=164543&eid=2127

    The final fact is that reporting, analysis and discussion is focused on a ban of a SUB-GROUP of the ABSOLUTE LEAST used firearm, NATIONWIDE: Rifles, 2.6% (FBI numbers, above).

    When emotion comes in the door, reason goes out the window — which is what the author of the “facts” above intended — the actual page title for the chart above is: “10 Terrifying Facts About Guns In The U.S.”
    http://www.upworthy.com/10-terrifying-facts-about-guns-in-the-us

    Half those “facts” are deliberately provided without context, distorted and/or irrelevant, and were meant to provoke an emotional reponse, not a reasoned one.

    It really IS time the adults stepped in…

    ~~~

    BR: Thank you for the data sources — they are greatly appreciated

  31. Frilton Miedman says:

    JohnathanStein Says:
    December 26th, 2012 at 3:35 pm
    “Half those “facts” are deliberately provided without context, distorted and/or irrelevant, and were meant to provoke an emotional reponse, not a reasoned one.

    It really IS time the adults stepped in…”

    We account for 5% of global population, we account for 50% of global gun deaths, we have the least regulated gun transactions of the industrialized nations.

    No emotion, strictly data from “adult” sources.

    Reductions in gun deaths for countries that have enacted gun regulations are remarkable, Australia nearly completely eliminated gun deaths when they enacted gun restrictions in 1996.

    What’s “emotional” about citing this?

    A single incidence of a psychiatric patient on medication going on a murder spree does not make the argument that has any weight on stats, better to compare whole countries percent of mentally ill to the proportion of gun deaths.

    You’d have to assert that America has 100 times the percent of mentally ill & violent individuals to justify the 5%/50% ratio.

  32. Frilton Miedman says:

    EDIT, You’d have to assert we have 10 times the percentage of mentally ill to account for the difference, not 100 times.

  33. JohnathanStein says:

    Hi Frilton — I think you’ve inadvertently let yourself be “positioned”, as the marketing people say.

    You can’t compare just “gun” deaths, you’d have to look at Murders in toto — if a firearm isn’t available, it won’t be used, so to exclude violence by other means introduces bias. Example: The same day, more kids were stabbed in China than shot in Newtown: http://www.digitaljournal.com/article/339118

    Reply back if you’re really interested, and I’ll see if the data can be put together.

    As for “A single incidence of a psychiatric patient”, there are nearly 5,000 articles describing such incidents — see http://www.ssristories.com/index.php, and that’s only what a private individual has managed to put together. He says it’s “the tip of the iceberg.”

    “You’d have to assert we have 10 times the percentage of mentally ill to account for the difference, not 100 times.”

    I don’t know that the data exists, even for OECD countries, but a reasonable extrapolation could be made from suicide data, I think. Without delving into the subject too deeply, I feel safe quoting this:

    From National Institute of Mental Health, Health Magazine 2010: “…the percent of the population in the United States that is diagnosed with bipolar disorder (swing from depression to mania or vice versa) has risen to 4.4%3 . This is almost one out of every 23 people in the U.S.”

    Would 10 times the prescription rate for psycho-active, poorly-understood drugs change your mind? What if such drugs were involved in — say 75% — of mass-shootings? Finally, what if such drugs were being marketed/administered to the more susceptible part of the population, the under-25 crowd — y’know, those still under their parent’s wing and/or insurance, and with brains not yet fully developed?

    Were the data compared properly, it’s less likely the U.S. would be such an outlier.

  34. Frilton Miedman says:

    John, the U.S. has a relatively low suicide rate compared to other countries, 12/100K vs some as high as 32/100K.

    As for the 5,000 cases of mentally ill related gun deaths, neat, but it still doesn’t debunk the general premise that gun violence coinsurance coincide with gun saturation rates, nor does it do much for the 32 gun deaths each day…crazy or sane, a gun death is a gun death.

    Interesting to note, the same day as Sandy Hook, a crazed lunatic entered a Chinese school and stabbed 22 children- with not one fatality.

    We have the highest saturation of guns in the world, we have the highest rate of gun deaths in the world, this isn’t complicated….there’s no mystery there, unless you’re a FOX viewer.

    We have solutions, you can choose to pretend they don’t exist, the majority of us won’t.

  35. Frilton Miedman says:

    Edit “coinsurance” was supposed to be “occurance” (auto-correct sucks)

  36. JohnathanStein says:

    BR — This is a bit long winded, but I hope you read through before possibly deleting it; it took me a long time to organize & write.

    >>John, the U.S. has a relatively low suicide rate compared to other countries, 12/100K vs some as high as 32/100K.

    Classifying both suicide and drug-induced shootings as “mental-illness related death”, might allow fresh analysis.

    >>As for the 5,000 cases of mentally ill related gun deaths, neat, but it still doesn’t debunk the general premise that gun violence coinsurance coincide with gun saturation rates

    Drugs can be a cause for behavior, but gun use is an effect. Besides, were guns removed as an available tool, other means would be found, like in Bath, MI: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bath_School_disaster

    >>Interesting to note, the same day as Sandy Hook, a crazed lunatic entered a Chinese school and stabbed 22 children- with not one fatality.

    Lack of fatality does not affect addressing the CAUSE. Next time could be a bomb, a Molotov, driving a truck trough a school fence & wall, who knows? I have two kids in grade school, and would FAR prefer that CAUSE be addressed, especially given the strong anecdotal evidence in those 5,000 articles.

    I’ve dealt personally with a mentally ill adult after he attacked my child (and several others) at school swimming lessons. Had I been there moments earlier, seeing it, he would have gone to hospital or morgue, instead of being forced to leave. Sometimes, I regret not breaking an arm or leg — I think that would have stuck in his memory, the next time he has an “incident”.

    >>…nor does it do much for the 32 gun deaths each day…crazy or sane, a gun death is a gun death.

    The 32/day is flat-out WRONG, overstated nearly 50% — the FBI data say 23/day. That number will drop even more when it can be cross-checked against drug-induced violence. FWIW, suicides are FOUR times higher, at 100/day. Medical mistakes kill 300/day.
    http://www.fbi.gov/about-us/cjis/ucr/crime-in-the-u.s/2011/crime-in-the-u.s.-2011/tables/table-20
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_OECD_countries_by_suicide_rate
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Organisation_for_Economic_Co-operation_and_Development
    http://www.justice.org/cps/rde/justice/hs.xsl/8677.htm

    >>We have solutions, you can choose to pretend they don’t exist, the majority of us won’t.

    Sure, there are simple, effective solutions — that neither side will like.

    Consider Drunk Driving: The best solution would PERMANENTLY revoke the license of a driver causing harm under the influence — no exceptions. Simple and sends a clear message; works well overseas, from what I hear.

    Instead, matters got complicated: Judges let drinking excuse killing, we got M.A.D.D. and implemented police-state stops, added tests for blood alcohol, allowed work priviledges for the guilty, jail-time, etc. Doesn’t work, punishes people who have done no harm, expands govt. intrusion, has high costs, etc.

    Now, if you propose armed violent behavior be dealt with swiftly, by sniper or via mass-deputizing citizens (for a limited period, say 5 years) — basically unlimited concealed carry, with no “gun-free zones” — maybe even offer a substantial reward for success (police get paid, don’t they?), then you have a shot at something that could work.

    Instead, there will be attempts at legislation, fought tooth & nail by NRA, et al. Anything passed will be too complex to work; national permitting won’t fly well and limiting ammo is idiotic (shooting is a skill that requires practice). As for more draconian measures, I would not want to be a policeman or back in the military, with any kind of confiscation order — they’ll NEVER get most of them, I doubt most older cops or troops will comply, and there will be extreme resistance.

    If outlier, headline cases like Newtown are, in fact, the result of Rx-induced violence, then effort would be better spent to ascertain the facts, then take proper action: Acknowledge the link, stop the drugs, remand to institutional care, perhaps even take TEMPORARY custody of firearms from the household.

    I think the two main issues which work against compromise by both sides are:

    “Pro gun”: No data or acknowledgement on the benefits of gun ownership.

    “Anti gun”: The fear factor.

    What I see on the “anti-gun nut” side is continuous take, no give (based on emotion), whereas the “pro-gun nut” side sees only encroachment on their properties and freedoms (based on reason).

    You can’t help but notice that the two sides “talk past” each other on the national stage. My opinion is that the main fault belongs to the “anti” side, with the simple, natural explanation of FEAR. Many city/suburb folks have little-to-no experience with firearms — thus they fear what the don’t know or understand. That is just NORMAL and sensible caution, probably built into our DNA.

    But it’s EMOTION, and you just can’t debate with it! As an example, look at the literal lunacy of arguing about the cosmetic components of “assault rifles” (bayonet lugs, pistol grips, magazine size, etc). It’s seen as just-plain-stupid, and the numbers prove it — they are a sub-group of less than 3% of the problem (see FBI data)!

    The very term “assault rifle” is a purely political, sensationalizing term, as the FACTS of modern firearm technology are “fully-automatic” (continuous-fire machine guns) and “semi-automatic” (single shot) firearms. Machine-guns are ALREADY banned.

    Emotion and reason won’t mix. If the “anti” side doesn’t learn the language and start making sense (instead of sensationalizing), the “pro” side won’t meet them part way, much less half way.

  37. Frilton Miedman says:

    John, not sure why you addressed “BR” and then quoted me.

    I’m getting nauseated at the notion of reading longer and longer replies that amount to excuse-making to do nothing, repetitions of the exact same message each time, only adding more text as if that adds credibility and accusing empirical data as “being emotional”.

    Again, this is simple – The greater the saturation of guns, the greater the gun deaths, this is mathematical fact.

    Two solutions to start – -

    1 – Stop allowing violent criminals to buy unregistered guns without background checks,
    for example, straw buyers in AZ & TX can buy dozens of assault weapons at a time without question, no record of where they go, no questions asked, then come back the next day and do it again.

    2 – Regulate & record mag sizes & ammo purchases, ban assault weapons made for the specific purpose of increasing dead count, you don’t need a 90 round drum mag to hunt deer any more than you need a nuclear weapon, yet we ban ownership of nukes despite the 2nd amendment.

    Australia, China, Japan & countless others have already provided conclusive evidence that fewer guns = fewer gun deaths.

    I simply expand on the idea without injury to the 2nd amendment by taking guns away from criminals, and by reducing he dead count for incidences that we cannot prevent.

    Lanza may have been stopped while reloading after double tapping 3 children if he had a 6 round mag.

    That IS how Jared Loughner was finally stopped, he tried to reload another 30 round mag..

    Instead, I’m here reading excuses, pointlessly debating convoluted reinterpretation of data with someone who refuses to see solutions.

  38. JohnathanStein says:

    Frilton

    >>The greater the saturation of guns, the greater the gun deaths,

    Show me the data. I’ve only seen that the U.S. gun and people population are nearly the same; nothing on int’l.

    >>1 – Stop allowing violent criminals to buy unregistered guns without background checks.

    Go ahead & try, won’t stop a thing; criminals don’t keep to the law. Also, guns are NOT registered, generally; they are not titled property.

    >>2a – Regulate & record mag sizes & ammo purchases

    Utterly useless on ammo; you can walk into WalMart and buy a box of 100 .22 long rifle for $7, 500 rounds for $20, great for “plinking”. FYI, that’s the same caliber as your pet peeve “assault” weapon, the AR-15, which uses NATO 5.56 — shorter bullet, smaller cartridge, lower power, less range, plenty deadly.

    Magazine size is irrelevant, bans are annoying. My sidearm takes 15 rounds, as I have large hands and bought something that fits. Could not get new, full-size clips then, only 10-round clips, because of the ban. Had to pay TWICE the price for used clips.

    But, I’ll tell you what: Since the previous ban was in effect for 10 years, show me data that reduced “gun deaths” during that time.

    >>2b – ban assault weapons made for the specific purpose of increasing dead count

    Meaningless. How did you miss that “assault” weapons are used less than either knives, fists or baseball bats? That is hard FACT from the FBI data.

    Were you aware there was ALREADY a ban on “assault” weapons in Connecticut: http://www.cga.ct.gov/current/pub/Chap943.htm

    Frilton, there need to be real reasons for effective proposals, with priorties being set. And effectiveness would have to be proven, over time — if you take action “X”, then effect “Y” better show up within, say 5 years, or your action “X” expires, rather than be made permanent.

  39. Frilton Miedman says:

    JohnathanStein Says:
    December 27th, 2012 at 5:46 pm
    ” …. bans are annoying. …”

    This sums your post in it’s entirety.

    ~~~

    You debate points, such as claiming no correlation between saturation and gun deaths, which is shot to hell once you compare international gun ownership rates to gun death rates, the entire premise of this thread.

    You cite that CT has an assault weapons ban, Barry did a great job explaining this on post #6 -

    “BR: 1. The type of gun used in Connecticut was under consideration to be outlawed, but thanks to pressure from gun lobby, that law never passed
    2. You can make it more difficult to kill 6 year olds if a military grade semi automatic assault weapon wasn’t sold in WalMart and available to just about anyone
    3. You make the case for national gun laws: State gun laws are ineffective if you can go over the border to get anything else.
    4. As we saw in China, mentally unbalanced people are everywhere. The difference of course being that when a cray person stabs 22 children they all survived.
    5. Yes, we need much more aggressive medical treatment of mental health problems in the USA>”

    Like I said, repeating the same thing, over and over and completing the obvious will not change the answer, this conversation is a hamster on a treadmill….lots of energy, no progress.

  40. JohnathanStein says:

    Frilton — How’s this for a trade-off:

    Go ahead & ban all sales of “military style assault weapons” — AR-15, AK-47, whatever but be specific — for 5 years, 10 at the outside. Keep stats, and if you prove a decline in “gun deaths”, the ban becomes permanent, govt offers buybacks on existing property. Heck, do the buybacks at the start, if you want.

    NOTE: You don’t get my semi-auto shotgun, it’s my primary hunting & trap/skeet shooting firearm, as it’s easy on the shoulder; my wife can handle a semi-auto, plus I’m getting older.

    In return, a complete analysis of shooting incidents where the shooter was on psychiatric Rx-drugs. All the data, no HIPA crap, unlimited access, full disclosure.

    If it turns out psych-drugs were taken by shooters in 70+% of the shootings, bans are removed. No sour grapes, grumpiness or other complaints; you shut up and soldier.

  41. Frilton Miedman says:

    John, I can agree, except for the argument that mental illness alone is the problem.

    In that case, the problem, as with criminals, is the ease at which they can attain firearms, specifically weapoons designed to maximize kills.

    Make it 10-15 years to account for residual saturation of assault weapons since 2004 and guns w/o background checks and follow incidences involving registered guns vs unregistered. (post Feinstein’s recommended gun registry)

    Include ammo restrictions, say no more than 10 rounds/year, but make allowances for registered gun ranges to sell larger quantities of ammo as long as it’s proven the rounds are used there.

    Specify in your tracking of stats that mass shooting incidences be tracked apart from single homicides, and that the stats follow the origins of guns used in crimes to know if they were grandfathered.

    Feinstein’s bill will grandfather existing ownership of assault weapons, but wants them registered, a legitimate owner like you has no worries, a straw buyer who’s been buying dozens of AR-15′s per week and reselling with no questions asked is shut down.

    In your scenario, both Aurora & Sandy Hook would have had less loss of life, Feinstein’s 10 round limit would have largely reduced the number of casualties inflicted by Jared Loughner, he was stopped once he tried reloading a 33 round mag and though others were armed there, none could fire back from inside a crowd.

    On the whole, beyond mass shootings alone – 40% of all guns are sold with no background checks, including names on the FBI terrorist watch-list.

    Al Qaeda cells in the U.S. could be loading up with AR-15′s and 90 round drum mags as we speak, legally.

    Private unregulated sales would be the first place convicts & sociopaths would go… especially over the internet.

    That’s the gist of the whole conversation, when we allow people to own weapons made to maximize kills, we trust their prudence & judgement with our lives.

    This is why Plutonium or Anthrax are controlled substances, though 99.999% of owners are trustworthy, it only takes that 0.0001% of the population to kill many…a parent forgets to lock a door and people die.

    Lanza’s mother was trustworthy and responsible, she made a miscalculation that killed 20 children.

  42. JohnathanStein says:

    Frilton — I don’t mean to be insulting, but most of those ideas are dumb as a box of rocks.

    Mental Illness & Mass Shootings — It would be interesting indeed to correlate these, so I may just have a go at it. Offer me odds, and I might just name an amount, for a wager: That AT LEAST 50% of mass shootings were psychiatric-drug related. The lawyers oughta start salivating over that…

    You’ll never “un-saturate”; firearms last generations. Brown Bess muskets used in the Revolutionary War were put into service for the Civil War. Quality has improved since then.

    Ammo restrictions will never, ever get through, and should not. It’s a super-silly idea, for any number of reasons:

    – Only stores with ranges sell ammo; most ranges aren’t stores and don’t. Some shotgun ranges (trap/skeet) sell shotgun shells; I’ve NEVER seen an outdoor rifle/pistol range which does.

    – Many people reload; large calibre ammo is expensive, anyway. All they need is used brass.

    – Shooting is a skill that requires practice; the more ammo that is sold, the better your aim; therefore, the safer bystandarders are. Cops don’t practice enough.

    – With competent shooters, magazine size is meaningless. Anyone with military training can change a mag in two seconds, literally. Stop by any IDPA (Intl Defensive Pistol Defense Assoc.) or USPSA (United STates Practical Shooting Assco.) event on a weekend. Part of the score is based on time, and at least one mag change is REQUIRED for each scenario. You blow off 100+ rounds each shoot, once a month. Lots of fun, too; my wife liked it.

    If registration gets passed, the only guns you’ll get are those “on the record” (ie: bought new), and I doubt a majority of those.

    If criminals/terrorists want full-auto weapons and large magazines, they’ll just smuggle them the same way they do people. The gov’t. can’t even control the borders, and you think they’ll be able to control weapons? You DEFINITELY need to talk with some folks who live in Arizona & Texas. There are places the U.S. Border Patrol won’t go, and they post signs warning Americans not to travel — on UNITED STATES SOIL!!! Others have people walk through their backyards, asking for “Tuscon” or “Phoenix” (probably the only English they know); the residents just point out a direction and hear “gracias” in reply. This is FACT, not anecdote; I personally know folks who’ve done this.

    If Pelosi, Feinstein have some “brilliant” ideas, let them can try it out in California, and see how well they work. Could be a model for the country. Don’t bet your mortage on the result, though.

    If background checks for used firearms goes through, you will simply convert private transactions into black markets. Many folks buy their firearms privately, especially when they know the seller, be it friend or relative. Just so happens that acts as a precaution against govt. confiscation. Looks like a sensible precaution, in hindsight.

    Lanza’s mother was stupid and paid the price.

  43. Frilton Miedman says:

    JohnathanStein Says:
    December 28th, 2012 at 11:14 pm
    “Lanza’s mother was stupid and paid the price.”

    - She did, along with 20 6 yr old’s, 6 adults and their families.

    we don’t trust the judgement of individuals with controlled substances for the same reason, if your neighbor allows his chunk of “hobby” plutonium to reach criticality, blue glow , you, your family and the neighborhood are dead in months.

    His stupidity or lapse in judgement will kill multiples, the same can happen with him owning a drum mag with an AR-15.

    “Frilton — I don’t mean to be insulting, but most of those ideas are dumb as a box of rocks.”

    - No, this is dumb as a box of rocks ….

    “If background checks for used firearms goes through, you will simply convert private transactions into black markets. ”

    How much does registration and background checks (titles, licensing) boost the black market for auto’s?

    There will always be black markets, one of the main deterrents of illegal markets is price – a legitimate gun buyer pays a lot less than a drug dealer or psychopath would to buy a gun on the black market, the gun show loophole makes it possible for anyone to buy at market price, including Al Qaeda.

  44. JohnathanStein says:

    >>How much does registration and background checks (titles, licensing) boost the black market for auto’s?

    1. Nobody takes out their kids to target shoot with plutonium.

    2. I must have missed your “drum mag” reference — go ahead & ban’em; keep standard 20 & 30 clips.

    3. There are far less autos per capita. However, this would have a far greater chance of being implemented if:

    – It were limited in scope.
    – There were no fees involved.

    Odds are 4:1 against 50% registration; I give 2:1 on 25%. Personally, I don’t have problem with background checks, but registration is a “third rail”.

    Frilton, it would be a different if good-hearted, well-meaning folks like yourself were calling for reasonable registration or restrictions, but:

    FIRST: You just don’t have the background to understand what is practical. Maybe if you took up trap shooting or ANYTHING which would give you a grounding of experience in the basics…reading your suggestions are like me giving 1st Aid advice to a NeuroSurgeon.

    SECOND: Well, I think the reason the NRA types “seem” to resist so hard is that they KNOW registration is the Holy Grail for all political power. They aren’t afraid of registration, per se, it’s their inability to resist what comes next…and there is ample historical precedent for that.

    THIRD: I think even the NRA supports background checks, but as far a registration — I know you’re not a hunter, BUT, please try to think like the prey: In this case, “registration” is perceived as precursor to attempted confiscation — a view for which there is more than ample historical precedent. In addition, household firearms ownership is perceived as a RIGHT — which it is. The anti-gun nuts are proposing to TAKE SOMETHING AWAY what the pro-gun nuts see as their own, personal, basic civil right.

    Tell me: If you got full background checks, will there be a way to appeal and/or correct the record? Because that ain’t working too well for those on the “No Fly Lists” — the govt. doesn’t have to tell you squat, you can’t find out if you’re on it beforehand, and there’s no way to appeal, from what I’ve read.

    My $0.02 for today.

  45. Frilton Miedman says:

    JohnathanStein Says:
    December 30th, 2012 at 1:28 pm
    “Frilton, it would be a different if good-hearted, well-meaning folks like yourself were calling for reasonable registration or restrictions ..”

    Reasonable = Not wanting convicts with violent offenses on their records, Al Qaeda, drug cartels and mentally unstable people to buy & own guns without background checks & registration… as easily as they can walk into a store and by a loaf of bread.

    ~~~~
    JohnathanStein Says:
    December 30th, 2012 at 1:28 pm
    “…FIRST: You just don’t have the background to understand what is practical. Maybe if you took up trap shooting or ANYTHING which would give you a grounding of experience in the basics…reading your suggestions are like me giving 1st Aid advice to a NeuroSurgeon. ”

    Ah, I see, only a true intellectual Neurosurgeon, such as yourself, can grasp the complex physics behind needing a 90 round mag in an unregistered rapid fire assault weapon to…er….hunt deer and fed off evil marauding masses of home invaders..
    (Ex-military, FYI, certified marksman with .45)

    The old “You’re stupid and I’m not…so I win the argument” thing is very, very familiar.
    ~~~~

    On the “plutonium” argument, you refuse to get it, we don’t allow private ownership of plutonium, or stinger missiles for the fact that the risk from a single incidence of misjudgment by a valid, trustworthy owner is too high.

    The same lapse in judgement that put an assault weapon with a 90 round drum mag in the hands of Lanza, a responsible, trustworthy citizen made a mistake that any of us could have made, 20 small children dead, and you want me to play stupid and buy your argument….because

    I’m pro second amendment, but that doesn’t give me the right to own a rocket launcher or any weapon that wields more risk when something less deadly will suffice.

  46. JohnathanStein says:

    Frilton, your suggestions are just impractical, that’s all.

    Un-saturate? Only sell 10 rounds a year? More only at ranges? Only 10-round clips? How long did it take you to change your 7-round clips — one second, or two? Banning rifles because flash suppressors and pistol grips are dangerous? They’re not even high caliber! Your anthrax/plutonium/rocket launcher references are strawman arguments.

    But, knock yourself out with background checks, expand them, and ban drum magazines, too, while you’re at it. Heck, write that out as a petition, I’ll sign it & even try to fill a page for ya!

    Won’t work, though. Wacko shootings is a BEHAVIOR issue, not a matter of inventory. Even if they ban & confiscate all AR’s and AK’s (neither of which I own, or plan to), the next nutjob will just pick whatever is handy.

    You’d get more bang-for-the-buck if you added a ban on the Rx-drugs involved and on gun-free zones. My gut says there’s something to Rx-drugs, while zones are useless, counter-productive and used for targeting by the wacko squad. Could be wrong, but I’ll give you 2:1 on either.

    Registration is a precursor to confiscation, and that’s been on politicians’ radar since WAY before the wackos started making headlines. The only people who believes otherwise haven’t looked at the record; those who have will not write that blank check. Ever.

    I think we can put this thread to bed. But, my petition offer is serious.

  47. Frilton Miedman says:

    JohnathanStein Says:
    December 30th, 2012 at 10:17 pm
    “…. Wacko shootings is a BEHAVIOR issue, not a matter of inventory. ”

    ~~~

    You’re saying a psychotic in a room full of sling shots is the same as a psychotic in a room full of grenades.

    We can do a little to prevent or predict psychotic episodes, we already do a lot to keep nuclear weapons away from psychotics, even though it infringes your 2nd amendment personal right to own nuclear weapons.

    I Lanza’s mother was only allowed to buy handguns & 10 round clips, the school principal may well have lived after tackling him as he reloaded, he’d have gotten off fewer rounds per second, but “bans are annoying”, the principal died trying, and so did 20 children.

  48. Frilton Miedman says:

    JohnathanStein Says:
    December 30th, 2012 at 10:17 pm
    Frilton, your suggestions are just impractical, that’s all.
    ” Registration is a precursor to confiscation”

    ~~~

    Indeed, once “big government” forced us to register our cars, homes, births and marriages…they took it all away.

    OK, maybe I’m as stupid as you suggest, cite an example of where registration led to confiscation, or forever stop watching Fox news.

  49. JohnathanStein says:

    Not going to take me up on the petition offer, eh? How about if I throw in a ban on Banana Clips, in exchange for no-permit Universal Carry of 2-shot Derringers, any place in every State?

    1. Haven’t watched regular news since I got DSL; Rupert Murdoch’s opinions don’t interest me. Gave up WSJ, in exchange for RSS awhile ago.

    2. There are no historical examples of confiscation of cars, homes, kids or spouses. Well, on occassion, due to the War on Drugs. But I’ll grant you that it is rare. Firearms represent power not under political control, and historical examples of confiscation abound.

    3. You want an example of registration leading to confiscation? Really? It’s part & parcel of confiscation — a precursor, y’know, “neccessary but not sufficient”. What is the penalty for NOT registering? I’ve never read of ANY case of registration that has NOT led to eventual confiscation.

    Well, since your position depend your NOT understand that, some examples follow; please do make an effort to get around the whole “none so blind” thing, would you?

    Germany, 1938 — Jews & other “undesirables”. Feel free to google the details yourself.
    UK — 1920 Firearms Act, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gun_politics_in_the_United_Kingdom
    Australia – 1996 , http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gun_politics_in_Australia

    A few more:
    1911 – Turkey
    1929 – Soviet Union
    1935 – China
    1956 – Cambodia
    1964 – Guatemala
    1970 – Uganda

    You can check these yourself, along with recent examples in California.