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“Under no pretext…”
But seriously. As a member of a minority group I understand that there are people who would have me killed. I understand as a worker living in the US that the government does not have my best interests in mind. I understand as a minority and a worker that the police are more likely to harm me than save me from a bad situation. So, with all that being known, how could I ever reasonably give up my weapon? It may stand between me and death some day.
Alongside this, the issue of gun violence in the US is not primarily an issue of people having guns, or mental illness. It is an issue of white supremacy and reactionary attitudes being normalized, and violent, toxic masculinity being entrenched in our society. The vast majority of shooters may have some kind of underlying mental illness, but notice the main things that are in common between them. Namely, they are generally white cishet men, and they almost always ascribe to some kind of hateful ideology.
I’m glad I’m born and raised in the Netherlands where we don’t have to ask this question constantly😸 I can only speak for myself and think guns don’t belong with the ‘average’ person. It’s simply too much power with only a single purpose, ‘good or bad’.
I get it that it is much different in other countries for many reasons doesn’t change the fact I don’t like them. I like the tech behind nuclear weapons but you don’t see me order one from the black market😻
If you go with self-defense why not a taser or something non-lethal. Leave it to the professionals, meow out
Her, folks! I love the way this thread flows without insults. Not the way in other networks…
I’d like to look into this subject.
I’m European (and not a good English speaker, sorry) and we generally conceive our safety in the other way. We delegate the use of the force to the estate, in hands if the government. And I feel safe in general and it’s not a main problem for the society nowadays.
But, do you, individually and generally as American, feel yourself safe with the 2nd amendment or only feel more safe but always threatened?
I realize the difference among the vast US and its low population density and any country in Europe where anyplace is not more than 40 miles away a medium size city. And this is only one in a few.
I generally feel safe. Homicide is very far down the list of causes of death. I am taking a much larger risk every time I choose to enter a car and drive on the highway, that somebody isn’t going to randomly decide to swerve into me.
I understand this, but the topic is about guns, not cars even guns versus cars.
I mean, vehicles have their risks, but their advantage, their utility??
We should then debate among risks and utilities of guns and compared with the equivalent for cars.
My question was more about if you feel safe because and only because the 2nd amendment.
In my opinion, safety is a feeling (in my language, we have the same word for Safety and Security. I wish I don’t mess up with both concepts in English)
I misunderstood your question then. No, I don’t feel significantly more safe because of the 2nd amendment, but also not significantly less safe. It has little impact on me either way.
Maybe this question ought to be asked in a different way : what do you think of military grade weapons in the hands of unchecked civilians?
If the US was as much attached to gun freedom (military weapons freedom) than quality education, quality Healthcare, quality democracy, it would actually be the best democracy in town.
Please don’t call my guns military grade. They’re much better than military grade.
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It’s a difficult question in this day and age where balance of fire power between people and government is so mismatched. It might almost be more relevant to think in terms of cyber capabilities.
This passage from Georgetown professor and historian Carroll Quigley always comes to mind when people talk about the American 2nd amendment being a safeguard against totalitarianism. I don’t know the answer.
On the military level in Western Civilization in the twentieth century the chief development has been a steady increase in the complexity and the cost of weapons. When weapons are cheap to get and so easy to use that almost anvone can use them after a short period of training, armies are generally made up of large masses of amateur soldiers. Such weapons we call “amateur weapons,” and such armies we might call “mass armies of citizen-soldiers.” The Age of Pericles in Classical Greece and the nineteenth century in Western Civilization were periods of amateur weapons and citizen-soldiers. But the nineteenth century was preceded (as was the Age of Pericles also) by a period in which weapons were expensive and required long training in their use. Such weapons we call “specialist” weapons.
Periods of specialist weapons are generally periods of small armies of professional soldiers (usually mercenaries). In a period of specialist weapons the minority who have such weapons can usually force the majority who lack them to obey; thus a period of specialist weapons tends to give rise to a period of minority rule and authoritarian government. But a period of amateur weapons is a period in which all men are roughly equal in military power, a majority- can compel a minority to yield, and majority rule or even democratic government tends to rise.
I believe people with a history of violence should be prevented from acquiring firearms and related stuff, but the general population should have access to most stuff. People with a criminal history that is non-violent shouldn’t necessarily be prohibited (getting caught smoking pot for example).
Favorite idea I’ve heard so far is a registry of people who are prohibited–what background checks are supposed to accomplish.
This prevents the government from tracking who has what, and also doesn’t negatively impact law abiding citizens like most proposed gun laws. Allowing most stuff also can help reduce the illegal market.
What seriously irritates me is that the focus is constantly put on firearms when it really should be mental health. You wouldn’t put a band-aid on a severe leg and believe that solved the problem would you?
I’m strongly against anything that specifically targets lower income people, such as licenses and tax stamps (e.g. FOID card in Illinois).
I am in the USA and don’t support gun control at a federal level. I understand why you would want to stop people from open carrying rifles in Manhattan but the same rules are not appropriate for people living in rural areas. It’s a difference of community control vs. state control – communities may choose not to have guns on the street but that’s not for the state to decide.
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My main point is that there is not a one-size-fits-all solution that should be applied to the whole country. Let each community govern its own norms of what weapons are allowed. Military grade weapons may not be required in a rural area but that does not mean we need a state bureaucracy to restrict them.
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Shall not be infringed
It is well studied that Means Reduction saves lives. As easy access to weapons and methods to commit suicide/murder are reduced people do not often substitute other methods, therefore the tragedy is avoided.
Gun control does not confront any of the root causes of the problem, however. Isolation, loneliness, disenfranchisement, and hopelessness are at all-time highs in American society. Anyone feeling these, or other crushing emotions is not alone. Restricting access to guns will avert tragedy, but neglects to treat a more serious illness of society.
According to Robert Putman’s Bowling Alone the transition from active engagement to passive consumption (the specific example he studied was how TV watching impacted Americans’ social lives) has been the single greatest factor contributing to an epidemic of social disengagement. Bowling Alone is now 21 years old, and the trends Putman identified in 1999 have not improved, they have been exacerbated by the internet, social media, and smart phones.
Gun control will save lives, and I am therefore in support, but it is not enough to take away access to guns and consider the problem solved. We must also address the difficult questions such as “in a democratic society, why does someone feel they have no say in their government and therefore they feel the need to own a gun in case violent revolution is necessary?” and “why do people in this community feel unsafe around their neighbors and feel the need to own a gun for self-defense?” We need to do a better job engaging the people who feel powerless, and the people who do not trust their neighbors, to promote positive social engagement within their communities.
I believe social media can be re-engineered to promote the positive characteristics of human psychology, instead of the current situation where social media (and consumptive entertainment generally) have been engineered to manipulate and exploit human psychology for profit. I believe gun violence and suicide are symptoms of a far more serious withering of American community by toxic hyper-individualism. I also believe these issues have reached a critical mass and solutions are beginning to be implemented. I feel very hopeful that these problems will be solved, and we will look at the last 30 years in America as a tragic and confused period.
While I agree that mental health is the main factor that is being ignored, I disagree with the banning of firearms for everyone. You wouldn’t ban rope if hangings were the top method of suicide, would you?
Mass shootings are relatively modern thing, so we need to look into the root causes. Radicalism is becoming a more and more prominent issue. People need to be taught how to see things from different perspectives and how to think critically. Without this people will just use different methods for causing mass destruction in the absence of guns.
While not banning rope seems like common-sense, it is well studied that Means Reduction saves lives. This means that if we did ban rope fewer people would commit suicide; most people would not substitute another method such as a knife or jumping off a bridge, they simply would not commit suicide at all.
Banning rope would be hugely disruptive to many industries and peoples personal lives, however, so it is not a practical possibility. Banning guns would not cause significant disruption to industry or the vast majority of peoples’ personal lives, so it is practical.
The means reduction studies show that most people will not choose another method for harming themselves or others, they will not act on their impulse if acting on their impulse is made more difficult.
Banning encryption would save lives too. Do you support that?
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What do you need encryption for? You trust the government, don’t you?
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You should read the book “A People’s History of the United States”. The government isn’t there for you, it’s there to protect the interests of industry. Time and time again the government has turned against its own citizens because they didn’t agree with the government.
The purpose of the second amendment is to ensure that the masses have the ability to defend themselves from a tyrannical government, but it also inadvertently plays a huge role in people’s ability to defend themselves and others from those who mean to cause serious harm.
A gun is the only thing that levels the field; by matter how small or weak you are, guns allow you to defend yourself against the biggest, strongest person, or several people. There just isn’t anything else like that.
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Is the utility in allowing the general population to own guns even in the same ballpark as the utility encryption provides to society?
I agree with this comment. While it’s true that gun control can save lives, there’s always another freedom in line you can revoke to save lives as well.
I prefer bow and arrow in the shooting range and a camera for wild animals.
As for control. I am sure that there are people who have very good reasons for owning a gun, and I do not like blanket bans. I am in favor of a process that allows a citizen to obtain a gun legally. However, it is my understanding that it is easier to obtain a gun than a diving certificate in the US, and that to me seems like an incredibly low bar.
Yeah I’ve been somewhere in the Southern US where you could legally give a gun to any family member, no paperwork or anything. It was a common thing for a kid to get a .22 rifle or a 12 gauge shotgun as a birthday present or something. I’d been offered to buy a gun illegally several times from people I met working at a couple of jobs, usually people fresh out of school who just casually buy guns literally just because “Why not?” In that location, if they banned guns, it would start a civil war, no doubt about it. I’ve spoken with so many people there who would be entirely prepared to have a shootout with the police if they tried to take their guns. Kind of a scary place. I don’t personally like guns but it’s so ingrained in that culture that it was something I had no choice but to deal with. I’m very torn on gun control, and I don’t feel as though I have an opinion of any worth about it, but I figured I’d share that experience.
With a culture like this it makes sense that they would want to protect their rights to own a gun. If receiving their first gun is a special milestone during their youth, and the person grows up shooting guns with family and friends, I can see how guns can become part someone’s identity.
Most of my life I have lived in countries were guns are banned, so from my perspective it is easy to say “No, of course that I don’t want it to be easier for the people around me to own guns!”. But I can appreciate that it is different when you talk about removing a freedom that is accessible at the moment.
Depends on the state. Some states it is nearly impossible to get a gun, and in others you just need to be old enough. There certainly are things that need to change, but I’m also against blanket bans and regulations that specifically target lower income people.
Points I am seeing raised:
If 1. is true the rebellion will be able to get guns. So there is not much of a problem in terms of 2. for outlawing guns.
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I like this answer.
I feel that individualist American manchilds try to live in that fantasy world of Wild West, Marvel movies and GI Joe, where their house is a little fortress and the world is their enemy. It is really funny yet pitiful, and the 38% approval rate for their Deep State government does not help change the notion among these citizens.
Chill with the Anglophobia, pseudo-intellectual sheep.
Oh look the person who calls others CCP apologists has returned from the Hong Kong CIA democracy thread…
like most things, if it’s not allowed the black market has higher demand. which in the end is still tied to government. I agree that less people in the first world will have it if it’s disallowed, but I recall vaguely that burglaries during blm protests were less common in the states where gun possession was legal.
one other thing, guns are used for hunting. that’s a whole debate on its own. hunting with a knife is somewhat harder and with a bow is considered more cruel.
Whether the populace has guns or not doesn’t matter for the purpose of maintaining leverage against the state when the authorities have drones, tanks and a military air force. It does however matter for everyone’s security, as evidenced by the crime rate in the US compared to countries in the EU. At least I don’t have to worry about shootings in the grocery store here in Sweden.
The military isn’t the point. If the police break into your house, it won’t be with a tank or an F-16. No government will ever try to massacre their populace with military weapons. Those are only for use against other countries. The only means a government will try to use to control its people is something more like the police. Thankfully, an American today can own a weapon which is similar to what the police have, and that’s what’s important.
You obviously haven’t been paying attention to the militarization of your police forces.
Are you seriously suggesting that one should be as armed as the police? Are you serious?
Only in America…
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In a democracy, governmental authority derives from consent of the governed. If it is not functionally possible for a populace to withdraw its consent from its government, then its “consent” is meaningless. Therefore, democracy requires that the populace be capable of overthrowing its government. In a country where the government owns guns, private gun ownership is necessary for effective self-rule.
I partially agree with you, if a nation-wide government have the control of the military and/or the police forces, there can be no democracy, and I don’t consider that a democratic system currently exist.
However, I strongly disagree with the need for private gun ownership, I would rather say that there should be no nations (and therefore no national military and police), but rather local/regional police and military forces, democraticly administrated by the population of those small geographic areas. I think there should also be a larger political union between those small regions (continental/world) union, with one institution to organize collaboration between military/police force.
P.S. : I do not know very much the history of the US but I thought the second amendment was more about the possibility for citizens to create local militias than private gun ownership, which is only a tool to allow their creation
Local police have historically been made up of power-hungry people though, and it has lead to much suffering through the history of the US. “A People’s History of the United States” contains a lot of historical evidence of this.