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Thread: Social Justice and the Gun

  1. #1 Social Justice and the Gun 
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    I get the impression that a lot of social injustice happens in the world simply because people aren't willing to fight. Or sometimes maybe they're not able to fight, because pitchforks vs. an AK-47 isn't any kind of odds.

    Do you think the world would be a better place if we were to manufacture so many guns that everybody had one? Or maybe some people are pacifists, and they'd be unwilling to fight even if they could? I know some people are very squeemish about taking a life, even when it's necessary to avoid enslavement.

    There's this popular saying "All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men do nothing." It's a quote attributed to a lot of different famous people, in various different form. I think all it takes is for good people to be unwilling or unable to carry a gun, and fire it.

    Or maybe the problem is that, in some countries, people don't have enough social education to know when it's appropriate to fire it and when it's not. If the shooting starts, it never stops because they don't know when to stop. There really is an aspect of philosophical understanding involved in knowing what things are worth killing over and what things are not.


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  3. #2  
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    Quote Originally Posted by kojax
    Do you think the world would be a better place if we were to manufacture so many guns that everybody had one?
    Somalia tried something like that. As PJ O'Rourke put it (in similar words), everything that can be accomplished with an assault rifle has been accomplished in Mogadishu.

    Other places in which basically everyone who wants it has suitable weaponry and is willing to fight include Afghanistan, certain areas of the Congo, certain areas of Colombia, and a couple of regions in Mexico.


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  4. #3 Re: Social Justice and the Gun 
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    Quote Originally Posted by kojax
    Do you think the world would be a better place if we were to manufacture so many guns that everybody had one?
    Canada's "betterness" owes much to gun seizures at the border.

    Few criminals here employ guns, because they rightly guess nobody else has guns. They can commit crimes just as easily and more safely without that equipment. If an idiot robs a gas station with a handgun though, the police are all on it so he's much more likely to be tracked down and apprehended.
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  5. #4 Re: Social Justice and the Gun 
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pong
    Quote Originally Posted by kojax
    Do you think the world would be a better place if we were to manufacture so many guns that everybody had one?
    Canada's "betterness" owes much to gun seizures at the border.

    Few criminals here employ guns, because they rightly guess nobody else has guns. They can commit crimes just as easily and more safely without that equipment. If an idiot robs a gas station with a handgun though, the police are all on it so he's much more likely to be tracked down and apprehended.
    It seems like the key is just making sure everyone has a level playing field, either one way or the other. On the opposite end we have Switzerland, with arguably the highest percapita gun ownership rate in the world.

    http://www.theblessingsofliberty.com...article11.html

    How's the saying go? "In the land of the blind, the one eyed man is king." You've either got to make sure nobody anywhere has the one eye, or make sure everyone everywhere has eyes. All the unjustices happen between those two extremes.
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    So what level field would you rather we play on? Personally I rather scuffle with a mugger over my wallet than engage in a knife fight.

    Maybe key is having police do arbitrary search and seizure of weapons.

    If I'm a crook in America, can I prowl around with a knife in my pocket, and claim innocence.. like the knife's for my own protection? Say the cops search my car and find a rifle in the trunk, what can they do?
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  7. #6  
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pong
    So what level field would you rather we play on? Personally I rather scuffle with a mugger over my wallet than engage in a knife fight.
    You'd have to get rid of kitchens in order to get rid of knives, but I think I see your point. It's better to live on the "no weapons" level playing field than on the "excessive weapons" playing field.


    Maybe key is having police do arbitrary search and seizure of weapons.
    That would never be allowed in the USA. Arbitrary searches and seizures of any kind, or for any reason are just plain off limits constitutionally.


    If I'm a crook in America, can I prowl around with a knife in my pocket, and claim innocence.. like the knife's for my own protection? Say the cops search my car and find a rifle in the trunk, what can they do?
    In the USA, you need a concealed weapons permit, at least for hand guns. If, for example, the police pull you over and find a pistol in your glove compartment, and you don't have the concealed weapons permit, they can charge you.

    I'm not sure about rifles, though. I think you can have hunting rifles in your trunk without any special permits, but hunting rifles are not a very popular weapon among criminals. Heavier rifles, like an AK-47 are simply illegal, with a few exceptions.
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    I do not have a source, but some years ago I heard about a statistic that stated murders per capita were higher in the city of New York, than in Afghanistan. The relative safety in Afghanistan was attributed to the deterrent factor of the higher proliferation of firearms. I assume that this estimate was pre-2001.

    I'm a big believer in the safety provided by legal concealed weapons permits. In the U.S., legally armed and well trained civilians avert violent crime on a daily basis.
    Co-producer of Red Oasis
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  9. #8  
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    I'm starting to prefer the heavily armed option too. I like the idea of violent criminals being afraid for their life every time they consider committing a crime. In an unarmed society that isn't the case.

    Attackers can still do horrible things with knives and clubs. All they need is numbers, and the defender becomes totally helpless to fight back. Not quite so with guns. The defender stands a reasonable chance of at least killing one of them.
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  10. #9  
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    Okay... so supposing you're desperate to rob a convenience store. And you're pretty sure the clerks have guns and will draw them. How will you prepare? What must you do before the clerks draw their guns?
    A pong by any other name is still a pong. -williampinn
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  11. #10  
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pong
    Okay... so supposing you're desperate to rob a convenience store. And you're pretty sure the clerks have guns and will draw them. How will you prepare? What must you do before the clerks draw their guns?
    I'd make sure I had a better gun than the clerks, and then I'd shoot the clerks before they could draw their guns.

    If everyone has to have a gun that's the start of an arms race and MAD. On the other hand there's a town in some southern state that has a law requiring all citizens to own a gun and the crime rate has dropped. Why? The bad guys have gone to the neighboring towns. If all the towns had the same law then the crooks have no option than to get better armament. Then the clerks have to get better guns and so on...

    Question is "Do you think the world would be a better place if we were to manufacture so many guns that everybody had one?" The world would be a much better place for the gun manufactureres. For the rest of us I'm not so sure.
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  12. #11  
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pong
    Okay... so supposing you're desperate to rob a convenience store. And you're pretty sure the clerks have guns and will draw them. How will you prepare? What must you do before the clerks draw their guns?
    If you force a desperate person to commit murder on their first try, that usually means they'll have a very short career in crime before they go away for the rest of their lives. In a gun free society, I think that person would go along committing crimes again and again until the net result was just as bad.

    I think what most defines a free society is the way it weighs the two values of life and liberty against each other. To have people show up and compel you to give them money against your will is a liberty problem. To have them kill you is a life problem. The question is just how many losses of liberty does it take before you'd rather die?
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  13. #12  
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    Quote Originally Posted by kojax
    In a gun free society, I think that person would go along committing crimes again and again until the net result was just as bad.
    Given an equal # of security cameras, cogent witnesses, and police, the crooks get caught eventually and sooner. Armed robbers don't leave cogent witnesses.

    Another point I'd like to make: Police work most effectively when they aren't scared for their lives.

    I hope you're not suggesting we encourage crooks to leave evidence in the form of bullets in corpses, so we can track them through a sea of guns that way.
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  14. #13  
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pong
    Quote Originally Posted by kojax
    In a gun free society, I think that person would go along committing crimes again and again until the net result was just as bad.
    Given an equal # of security cameras, cogent witnesses, and police, the crooks get caught eventually and sooner. Armed robbers don't leave cogent witnesses.

    Another point I'd like to make: Police work most effectively when they aren't scared for their lives.

    I hope you're not suggesting we encourage crooks to leave evidence in the form of bullets in corpses, so we can track them through a sea of guns that way.
    What I was referring to is that, if we assume equal likelihood of getting caught in both cases, the murderer will spend the rest of their life in prison, or at least a "life sentence" for felony murder, while a petty thief just spends a few years and then we let them out.

    In the first place, since it's a bigger risk, fewer people are going to take it. In the second place, the police would have more resources available per crime, because there are fewer total cases landing on their desk. But, it's unlikely that we would fund them any less than we do now, because those few cases they get are so important to us.
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    Here in the UK, hand guns were banned many years ago, thus instantly criminalising law abiding members of gun clubs, if they did not hand their weapons in. However the use of hand guns and other firearms by criminals has risen quite dramatically. We should all be allowed to arm ourselves for purposes of self defence, after all " One Shot, One Kill, Shoot To Kill " would deter most would be killers.
    Here is just one example of how easy it is to bring hand guns into the UK despite what the law says.
    http://news.sky.com/skynews/Home/UK-...=searchresults
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    wow. wow. I cant get over it, someone slap me

    injustice because there is not enough guns

    good example of the saying that goes something like this 'when all you have is a hammer all problems appear to be nails' :wink:

    do you have any particular injustice in mind?

    by the way, dont a lot of afghan freedom fighters get killed by predator drone missiles even if they pack ak47? and Dont many Nato invasionary occupation troops get blown by IED even if they carry shiny guns?

    "statistic that stated murders per capita were higher in the city of New York, than in Afghanistan. The relative safety in Afghanistan was attributed to the deterrent factor of the higher proliferation of firearms"
    So the basis of comparison for US citites is now a war torn region? ouch

    I think you guys are way off base, off field and in another galaxy;

    I know a city where most people are relatively happy, where there is low unemployment, theres almost no crime and no murders, its safe for your kids to walk on their own and you can walk around at 3 am in the middle of the night without any worry. But People dont own guns. Oh and there's no death penalty either, criminal justice is much more leniant then most places too. How can that be if more guns are required for justice and theres no hard-on-crime deterence either?

    Dont you guys see that the social environement is a major factor in crime?

    If you build a dog-eat-dog rat race society filled with inequality, where your well being hinges on the money you can tear away for yourself, where only those that can afford it have access to health and education and justice, and those that dont get screwed, etc, you just might get more crime even if you make prisons and electric chairs. Better to solve the root causes of crime on many levels so that no one feels the need to comit them in the first place and make them so rare that repression is trivial.

    (of course, being soft on crime or banning guns, just by itself, is not a solution if the entrie society remains a crime and neurosis generating environmnent)
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  17. #16  
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    There is an old story in China.
    One man goes to buy a pair of shoes. He is so hurry that he forget to try them on. After he goes back home, he finds that they are too small. So, he cuts down his heel and the shoes fit now.

    kojax

    You are just doing the same thing.
    You see the problems, but never care what are the reasons.

    kill the killers, kill the killers who kill the killers, kill the killers who kill the killers who kill the killers...

    No wonder US gov like to get armed everywhere on this planet.
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  18. #17  
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pong
    Okay... so supposing you're desperate to rob a convenience store. And you're pretty sure the clerks have guns and will draw them. How will you prepare? What must you do before the clerks draw their guns?
    Here's the key issue. Absolutely nothing will deter a desperate person, but how many robbers are desperate? If you dramatically diminish the frequency with which an event occurs, but fail to eradicate it completely, does that mean you have accomplished nothing?

    If instead of the greedy and the desperate, I now only have to deal with the desperate, that would seem like an improvement, wouldn't it?
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  19. #18  
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    Greedy...? Bonnie & Clyde were legends rightly because they were unusual. Most crooks - and criminals generally - genuinely believe they have no better option. Arguably they're correct in this assessment. If they're going for money, it's because they're poor i.e. unemployed and/or badly in debt. Often drug addiction is part of it, or mental health issues, or just plain bad fate. So you just look at the real unemployment rate and drug addiction rate of your country, there's your pool of desperate citizens. Oh yeah, and keep in mind the men have their ladies to look after too. It doesn't all go to paying the landlord and the gas station. Greedy?

    If it's domestic crime, again, the attacker invariably feels he's been pushed beyond the limit or otherwise taken advantage of... yes even by a needy unwanted child. Greedy ambition rightly makes headlines because its unusual. Most domestic crime is perpetrated out of social misery, which cuts across all demographics, although poverty exasperates it.

    I can - and do - see insecure failures who desperately desire to prove their worth by flaunting cash. So they blow it on expensive restaurants or better yet in style at a casino. But again this is not so much a "greedy" desire to get ahead as it is to outshine their basic failure through make-believe. If they made a decent living they wouldn't feel a need to prove anything.

    So those are root causes. There are different solutions, none of them really palatable to your bankers nor elected officials.

    Notice that the low gun-crime countries may have poverty but they have means of staving of desperate action: welfare, cultural supports, ethical society.
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  20. #19  
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pong

    If it's domestic crime, again, the attacker invariably feels he's been pushed beyond the limit or otherwise taken advantage of... yes even by a needy unwanted child. Greedy ambition rightly makes headlines because its unusual. Most domestic crime is perpetrated out of social misery, which cuts across all demographics, although poverty exasperates it.
    If he just feels that way, then I wouldn't define him as desperate. People who simply feel pushed are usually deterr-able. It's the people who honestly have no choice at all who will charge into near certain death. There will always be a few determined criminals too, who just feel the need to prove how brave they are by getting into a gun battle. Most of your serial killers and such tend to steer clear of people who are likely to shoot back. There isn't the same power rush when victory isn't certain from the outset.

    My point isn't that not even one citizen in the whole community will ever think of committing a crime if the people are armed. I'm saying that ones brave enough to do so make up a very small fraction of the overall group. That's why most drug addicts never go past the point of shoplifting to feed their habit, at least around where I live.




    Notice that the low gun-crime countries may have poverty but they have means of staving of desperate action: welfare, cultural supports, ethical society.
    When such things start to become the sole/strongest cause of crime in a community, it's natural to expect that the public will begin to focus in on them more closely, and become more willing to address them. It sounds to me like a positive side effect.
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  21. #20  
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    Quote Originally Posted by kojax
    My point isn't that not even one citizen in the whole community will ever think of committing a crime if the people are armed. I'm saying that ones brave enough to do so make up a very small fraction of the overall group.
    Ah, well then you must have lower rate of (handgun) homicide than Canada, since a higher proportion of your law-abiding citizens have guns.

    I don't know what alternate cause & effect you see when comparing our countries. Do you predict Canada would have even less crime if citizens had guns? We don't put pacifist-powder in the drinking water you know. The factor isn't even availability of guns to criminals - they can get them blackmarket if they really want. The factor is citizen gun ownership.
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  22. #21  
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pong
    Quote Originally Posted by kojax
    My point isn't that not even one citizen in the whole community will ever think of committing a crime if the people are armed. I'm saying that ones brave enough to do so make up a very small fraction of the overall group.
    Ah, well then you must have lower rate of (handgun) homicide than Canada, since a higher proportion of your law-abiding citizens have guns.

    I don't know what alternate cause & effect you see when comparing our countries. Do you predict Canada would have even less crime if citizens had guns? We don't put pacifist-powder in the drinking water you know. The factor isn't even availability of guns to criminals - they can get them blackmarket if they really want. The factor is citizen gun ownership.

    Now that I think of it, I'm not expecting homicide to go down at all. Like you've pointed out, criminals have to be willing to kill in order to carry out petty crimes. Petty crimes would probably go down, and homicide go up. Personal liberty is not about whether you live or die. It's about how free you live, or how free you die. In a gun toting society, you don't have to let anyone oppress your freedom. The lessening of your safety is a natural byproduct.

    I think it was Benjamin Franklin who said: "They who can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety, deserve neither liberty nor safety."

    The cost of freedom is not being afraid to die. You can make a slave out of anyone who is afraid to fight in case they might get killed. Same goes for anyone who is afraid to carry a gun in case they might have to use it.
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  23. #22  
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    The United States has about 15,000 homicides per year. Over two thirds are carried out by firearms, and about 9,000 are done using hand guns. My country (New Zealand) has one sixth of the murder rate per capita, and less than 10% of all murders are by guns. The main difference is the percentage of the population in possession of firearms, and the almost total ban on hand guns.

    I read an article a while back, about murders in the USA. Apparently, there are two factors which are highly predictive of murder rates, when looking at individual states.
    1. Possession of firearms as a percent of population.
    2. Percentage of African-Americans.

    I better not discuss the latter variable, in case I am accused of being racist. However, it is clear that more people owning and carrying firearms increases murder rates.

    The idea of needing firearms to protect your family is a nonsense also. I saw the statistic in an article in New Scientist. If a householder confronts criminals invading his home, and he or she carries a firearm, there is 450% the chance of being killed or maimed compared to someone not so armed. A similar increase in likelihood of death and injury applies to his/her family.

    The final fact relates to suicide rates. If there is a firearm, especially a hand gun, in a home, the probability that a member of the family will kill himself/herself increases substantially. http://www.harvardscience.harvard.ed...s-suicide-rate
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  24. #23  
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    Well, kojax isn't arguing the numbers. He says it's better to die free than give even a little slack in life.

    To this I'll argue that individuals in gun societies display a greater fear of crime, and subsequent loss of convenience (freedom) because of their fear. All the nitty gritty of "minding your stuff" takes a toll, especially in urban environments. Don't leave your bag unattended and all that.

    Who is more free: the citizen who casually leaves a $900 bicycle in front of a store, or the citizen who shouldn't risk it even with a bike lock through the frame?

    Guns are relevant here because of how attempted crimes play out where the parties may be armed.
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  25. #24  
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    Just to add to my previous note. Carrying a gun does not mean you can or will use it at all, much less in a way that is effective.

    In WWII, there was a study that showed that 85% of all trained soldiers, in a fire fight, either shoot to miss the enemy, or fail to fire their guns at all. The simple fact is that most humans are basically too decent to be prepared to kill others, or even shoot to wound. Only criminals and the very nasty can and will do that.
    http://www.progressive.org/mag/boudreau0209.html

    This immediately shows up a major fallacy in the 'logic' that Kojax is presenting. Normal and decent people are extremely reluctant to harm others. Criminals show no such reluctance. If a normal person armed with a firearm gets into a confrontation with a criminal, also armed with a firearm, guess who gets killed?
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  26. #25  
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    Skeptic said,
    Only criminals and the very nasty can and will do that. It seems that you are inferring, by defending your family and yourself, we would fall into the category of being a criminal or of being very nasty. Our ancestors must have a lot to answer for.
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    Dave

    Most people will hesitate before shooting, even when their families are threatened. That is why confronting an armed criminal while holding a gun is a very bad idea. Assuming you are an average, decent human being, you will hesitate before shooting. The criminal won't.

    The point of my posts is to say that widespread ownership of guns is a very, very bad idea. Guns are designed to kill, and they do a stirling job of achieving their design goal. Statistics make it very clear. Widespread ownership of guns make for more homicides, more suicides, more fatal accidents, and is a bad thing all around.
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    Quote Originally Posted by skeptic
    In WWII, there was a study that showed that 85% of all trained soldiers, in a fire fight, either shoot to miss the enemy, or fail to fire their guns at all. The simple fact is that most humans are basically too decent to be prepared to kill others, or even shoot to wound. Only criminals and the very nasty can and will do that.
    http://www.progressive.org/mag/boudreau0209.html
    Thanks for the lead. I've often wondered that historic military practices and technology seemed designed to engineer violence from loathing soldiers. This is not a popular thesis.
    A pong by any other name is still a pong. -williampinn
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    Pong

    Sadly, this is no longer the case. Since the beginning of the Viet Nam war, the military have adopted training techniques that induce soldiers to fire on reflex at the appearance of any hostile person. This means the soldiers are much more effective on the battlefield and enemy casualties are much higher.

    However, it also means that there is a hell of a lot more post traumatic stress disorder among returned veterans. When an essentially decent human being shoots at another human, as a result of that specialised training, and kills or wounds that enemy, it can and often does, result in long term feeling of deepest guilt. A single incident can utterly destroy that soldier for the rest of his/her life.
    http://onviolence.com/?e=123

    I quote :

    "One of the best works on PTSD is LTC Dave Grossmann's book On Killing. On Killing identifies the US military as using operant conditioning to train its soldiers to help overcome their natural reluctance to kill, and he interprets PTSD as a byproduct of what can come about when the military uses this operant conditioning. Soldiers and veterans have to adjust and come to terms with the fact that they have committed what is in most religions and societies considered to be the ultimate sin: to take the life of another human being. Sympathy with the motivations of the enemy combatants, acknowledgement of the humanity of the enemy combatants, and the uncertainty of the combatant status of the person they have come into conflict with can compound these results."

    For those males who are still opposed to women in the military, there is a degree of justification for that opposition. Women in general (there are many exceptions) are more empathetic than men. This means that a woman is even more reluctant to shoot someone else, and when they do, it leads to worse post traumatic stress disorder than normall hits a male.
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  30. #29  
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    Quote Originally Posted by skeptic
    Dave

    Most people will hesitate before shooting, even when their families are threatened. That is why confronting an armed criminal while holding a gun is a very bad idea. Assuming you are an average, decent human being, you will hesitate before shooting. The criminal won't.

    The point of my posts is to say that widespread ownership of guns is a very, very bad idea. Guns are designed to kill, and they do a stirling job of achieving their design goal. Statistics make it very clear. Widespread ownership of guns make for more homicides, more suicides, more fatal accidents, and is a bad thing all around.
    This just seems like we're treating people like children. Some people are. I wouldn't want my father to have a gun. He's too much of a hot head. Even at age 60 (his birthday is actually today), he's never reached a level of maturity that would enable him to make intelligent decisions about that sort of thing. Fortunately he has my mom to keep him on track.

    My grandfather on my mother's side, however, carried guns around most of his life, even in public. (He was one of those old school cow boy throwbacks. Never drove a car until his employer forced him to, cause he liked riding horses.) I don't think anyone ever worried he's misuse one. He served in Korea, and from what he told me of his experiences, he was certainly one of those 15% who would have never shot to miss. He only got in one fire fight, and he hit his target. And if you could hear his voice talking about it, there wasn't any PTSD about it.

    I think you should be careful describing what you think of as an "average, decent human being", though. Even though he could kill without remorse, my grandfather never exhibited any anti-social tendencies in the sense of aggressiveness or violence. I never knew him to bully anybody, even a little. I think you have to couple sociopathic-ness with greed in order to get a bad combination, and he just plain wasn't greedy. Un-greedy people with guns are a pure benefit to society. There's no downside. Greedy people, on the other hand..... that's another story.
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    kojax

    You can make any case you like when you refer to individuals. That is because humans are so variable. Every type of person is out there, from psychopathic killers to those who are totally saintly.

    I once had a friend who regularly got drunk, and then would drive home. If the police had known how often he did that, he would have ended in prison! However, when drunk, he was the safest driver I knew. He would slow right down, and his concentration over the wheel was startling. He was a good driver and more than compensated for the effects of the booze.

    However, I am still a complete supporter of the drink driving laws. My friend might have been able to drive safely, but millions cannot, and become disasters when driving drunk.

    In the same way, you can argue about some people who are good with guns. Enough are the direct opposite to make widespread gun ownership seriously undesirable.
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    Forum Sophomore An inconvenient lie's Avatar
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    WOW im actually surprised the consensus on this topic is as it is!

    absalutely criminals will continue to operate guns no matter what and they will always get them! as for me i am no criminal but my house has been broken into twice (both times by illegal aliens) and since i was 13 my dad has allowed me to keep a pistol in my room. We have a lot of guns all over the house though.
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  33. #32  
    JX
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    Quote Originally Posted by An inconvenient lie
    (both times by illegal aliens)
    Ok, the fact that you 'know' that it was illegal aliens suggests to me that either (1) they were caught both times, in which case I don't see why you need a gun; or (2) you're making a baseless assumption based on racism.
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  34. #33  
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    Quote Originally Posted by skeptic
    kojax

    You can make any case you like when you refer to individuals. That is because humans are so variable. Every type of person is out there, from psychopathic killers to those who are totally saintly.

    I once had a friend who regularly got drunk, and then would drive home. If the police had known how often he did that, he would have ended in prison! However, when drunk, he was the safest driver I knew. He would slow right down, and his concentration over the wheel was startling. He was a good driver and more than compensated for the effects of the booze.

    However, I am still a complete supporter of the drink driving laws. My friend might have been able to drive safely, but millions cannot, and become disasters when driving drunk.

    In the same way, you can argue about some people who are good with guns. Enough are the direct opposite to make widespread gun ownership seriously undesirable.
    That is a good point. The problem is situations like Inconvenient Lie's situation, where not owning a gun can lead to a person being subject to intolerable circumstances. It's unrealistic to expect the police to be everywhere all the time, and some areas have higher crime rates than others. Where I live, there is no reason at all that I would need a gun, so I don't own any.

    I don't think being unable to drive drunk is more than just a minor inconvenience, but being unable to defend your home is. How extremely should some people have to suffer in order for others to avoid suffering?
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    kojax

    There was a New Scientist article that covered that situation. Apparently the statistics show that if your home is invaded, and you confront the invaders with a gun in your hand, you have a probability of getting killed or maimed, and your family has an equivalent probability of harm, of 450% higher than if you confronted the nasty bastards with no weapon.

    Not my figures. Just the results of a team of researchers who worked out the figures.

    Basically the principle seems pretty much universal. The more people who own guns, the greater the number of people killed by homicide, suicide or accident.

    Some interesting statistics for Americans.
    http://www.vpc.org/fact_sht/hgbanfs.htm

    The biggest firearms problem in the USA appears to be the widespread ownership of hand guns. It is hard to justify owning a firearm if it is a hand gun. It is not much use in hunting, and frankly, has its main value in that it can be concealed until used to kill a human (mainly a member of the possessor's family, since suicide is the biggest killer).

    86% of firearm related crime involve a handgun. And, quoting from my reference :

    "Since 1962, more than one million Americans have died in firearm homicides, suicides, and unintentional shootings. Handguns were used in more than 650,000 of these fatal shootings."

    As I pointed out, you cannot rationally justify owning a firearm, and especially not a hand gun, to protect your family, since statistically such ownership actually increases drastically the chances of them being harmed.

    Also from my reference.

    "The largest category of firearms fatality is suicide, not homicide. In 1997, 54 percent of all gun deaths were suicides, and 42 percent were homicides.16

    About six out of 10 suicides are committed with firearms.17

    For firearm suicides, it is estimated that handguns are used twice as often (69 percent) as rifles and shotguns.18

    For all suicides, it is estimated that more than four out of 10 were committed with handguns."
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    I wonder how the New Scientist statistics were calculated. Did they take into account the fact that a greater percentage of house owners are armed in areas where gun ownership is more popular, and hence the burglars are also more likely to be armed? I don't know, I'm just asking the obvious question. If not, you could just as well say that wearing a helmet increases your chances of dying of shrapnel wounds (because helmets are worn by soldiers in war and not by safe civilians in countries enjoying peace).

    On the other hand, in all my life (and I'll be 50 soon) I was only once in a situation (not counting target shooting) where I would have used a gun if I had one. And I would have been badly wrong to do so. So perhaps it's just as well I don't have a gun.
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    I do not know how they calculated the stats. I doubt that the researchers would have overlooked something so obvious. But even if they did, it would be difficult to account for a 450% increase in deaths and maiming from that cause.

    I was sitting and watching a repeat of the old MacGyver series the other day. I had forgotten that the hero of that series hated guns. He solved his problems without using firearms. A good role model.
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  38. #37  
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    Quote Originally Posted by JX
    Quote Originally Posted by An inconvenient lie
    (both times by illegal aliens)
    Ok, the fact that you 'know' that it was illegal aliens suggests to me that either (1) they were caught both times, in which case I don't see why you need a gun; or (2) you're making a baseless assumption based on racism.

    im not a racist we had to chase one of them for a couple blocks (my dad and me) my dad eventually cuaght the guy and we did find out he was an illegal and he probabbly would of tried to fight if we had not had the gun.

    The second time we just came home and he was in my dads bed room but he did look latino (so maybe a little biased) but he just ran away out the window.

    I dont live in the best of neighborhoods and a very high percent of my population here is illegal aliens.
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  39. #38  
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    Quote Originally Posted by skeptic
    kojax

    There was a New Scientist article that covered that situation. Apparently the statistics show that if your home is invaded, and you confront the invaders with a gun in your hand, you have a probability of getting killed or maimed, and your family has an equivalent probability of harm, of 450% higher than if you confronted the nasty bastards with no weapon.

    Not my figures. Just the results of a team of researchers who worked out the figures.

    Basically the principle seems pretty much universal. The more people who own guns, the greater the number of people killed by homicide, suicide or accident.

    Some interesting statistics for Americans.
    http://www.vpc.org/fact_sht/hgbanfs.htm

    The biggest firearms problem in the USA appears to be the widespread ownership of hand guns. It is hard to justify owning a firearm if it is a hand gun. It is not much use in hunting, and frankly, has its main value in that it can be concealed until used to kill a human (mainly a member of the possessor's family, since suicide is the biggest killer).

    86% of firearm related crime involve a handgun. And, quoting from my reference :

    "Since 1962, more than one million Americans have died in firearm homicides, suicides, and unintentional shootings. Handguns were used in more than 650,000 of these fatal shootings."

    As I pointed out, you cannot rationally justify owning a firearm, and especially not a hand gun, to protect your family, since statistically such ownership actually increases drastically the chances of them being harmed.

    The problem with trying to compile any statistic on home invasions is that people with the right personality who own guns are very unlikely to be invaded in the first place. Any criminal with a brain (and I know that's an oxymoron, but most criminals do think about their crimes before doing them.) will do some basic research, or at least case a home before invading. They'll look for tell tale signs of the owner's personality and gun ownership. If you see an NRA sticker on the outside, that is definitely a home to avoid.


    A gun owner with the "right personality" I'm talking about would probably not "confront" an invader at all. They would shoot on sight. If the invader isn't dead already, then the criminal either does one of two things: either they run, or they don't run. The sound of the gun itself serves as an alarm the neighbors will hear, so the police will already be on the way.

    If you're smart about it, you could effectively defend your home with blanks. Just fire your gun down the hallway a few times and most criminals will run for their lives. It's the morons who walk out of their bedroom with a gun and try to talk about it who get hurt. The main problem with confronting is that, in the first place, that means you've seen the burglers, and you may be able to identify them. (even with masks). At that point, they've got no choice but to kill you or go to jail. In a confusing gun battle, they're more likely to run because that offers them a high probability of not getting caught at all.






    Also from my reference.

    "The largest category of firearms fatality is suicide, not homicide. In 1997, 54 percent of all gun deaths were suicides, and 42 percent were homicides.16

    About six out of 10 suicides are committed with firearms.17

    For firearm suicides, it is estimated that handguns are used twice as often (69 percent) as rifles and shotguns.18

    For all suicides, it is estimated that more than four out of 10 were committed with handguns."
    I don't lose any sleep at night over suicides.
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  40. #39  
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    Quote Originally Posted by kojax
    I don't lose any sleep at night over suicides.
    LOL...I was thinking the same thing as I read that, and I've had a suicide in my close family.

    I was going to start a new thread, but instead, found this one.

    To (hopefully) add to the conversation...why is it that I should be unarmed? I've never had a car wreck bad enough to need a seat belt, but I put the damn thing on every time I turn the key.
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  41. #40  
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    Quote Originally Posted by Leszek Luchowski
    I wonder how the New Scientist statistics were calculated. Did they take into account the fact that a greater percentage of house owners are armed in areas where gun ownership is more popular, and hence the burglars are also more likely to be armed? I don't know, I'm just asking the obvious question. If not, you could just as well say that wearing a helmet increases your chances of dying of shrapnel wounds (because helmets are worn by soldiers in war and not by safe civilians in countries enjoying peace).
    I like this point. Just noticing its implications now. What if the criminals were the first to get armed, and the civilian population were simply trying to keep up with them?


    On the other hand, in all my life (and I'll be 50 soon) I was only once in a situation (not counting target shooting) where I would have used a gun if I had one. And I would have been badly wrong to do so. So perhaps it's just as well I don't have a gun.


    I used to live in an area where people were constantly breaking into cars by smashing their windows. Had to replace 3 window panes in 3 months. I'd have loved to have gone outside with a cell phone camera and taken their picture the next time it happened, but only if I was armed. I'm not going to win a 3 on 1 fist fight, but gun fights have a way of being a little more equal than that.

    My main problem with gun-free societies is that numbers rule. Any group of people larger than 1, can freely rob or take advantage of a person traveling alone. And if you charge them with assault, they can argue that it was a mutual challenge of some kind, provoked by both parties, but hand to hand combat is different from gun combat. If they shoot you, nobody is going to think you challenged them to a draw. All of the ambiguities favor the defender.
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