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Comment Re:Reduce gun violence? (Score 1) 436

E.g. if you go by sheer body count, the first thing that we should ban are cars that can drive faster than the maximum speed limit in the country.

Excellent example. We didn't ban cars. Instead, we have tons of regulations applied to cars, require a driver license and insurance to operate, and you can be cited for operating an improperly maintained vehicle. Where's similar legislation for guns? Are cars actually more deadly than guns? And don't go by body count, because utility is a factor there too - unless you want to argue that nukes are some of the least dangerous things out there.

So the efficacy of the measure for the intended purposes is, effectively, disproven by now.

I'd love to start with some proper funding to actually study the question. Unfortunately, thanks to some wonderful budget decisions by republicans, there's no money for studies, there's no money to even collect data, and because there's no money, all research would have to start from scratch if there were money to be found. In the meantime, we're left with shitty data from countries that barely resemble ours.

Comment Re:Democracy (Score 1) 436

Erm. Get your definitions straight. We ARE a democracy. Look up the word in an dictionary, encyclopedia or even sociology or history book. A republic merely means that the government is a public affair, not a private, i.e., autocratic affair. Democracy is merely one way to implement a republic, and a pretty popular at that. After that, you can quibble about representative versus direct democracy, but those are still democracies
Oh, and before you start talking about the Federalist papers - actually read them. They are explicit about referring to a direct democracy being unwieldy, not democracy in general.

Comment Re:Reduce gun violence? (Score 2) 436

There is a difference between a right and the ability to exercise that right.

Of course. But you're still missing the point. You need to be able to justify your right from a philosophical perspective before you can expect me to endorse it. Since you brought up Rosa Parks elsewhere: that black people should have the same rights as white people was, at some point, not self-evident. As a matter of fact, it took about 100 years of discussion and violence to make that seem self-evident in retrospect. You don't get to short-circuit the discussion about the right to bear arms with a "because we're born with it". Either you can support the notion, or you can keep shouting in the desert.

"it is already against the law to do X and people are ignoring the law and doing X anyway, so adding another law to make X illegal won't solve the problem"

It's easy to argue against a point neither I nor anyone else is making, isn't it? There are two ways to "add law" to a problem. You can make the penalties harsher, or you can make certain aspects of a problem illegal that are currently legal. Like, I don't know, making it illegal to sell a gun privately without a background check. Both add laws, but are certainly more nuanced then "it just makes x illegal again".

And yet every gun control advocate is wishing that the reality of guns would go away

Again, I think you might want to stop with the strawmen. It's really, really hard to take you seriously.

The guy who steals a gun and goes to a school to shoot the defenseless children there is already breaking more than one law, of both man and God.

The guy stole guns from his mother who kept them barely secured. Why are guns the only dangerous tool that people can just leave lying about? You can't leave TNT out on a front porch, and you can't leave uranium lying around. There are plenty of ways to make the problem of people illegally acquiring guns harder. What you're doing is to argue that because there is nothing that will fix the problem 100%, there's no point in even reducing the problem.

And, like I said, nobody is arguing in support of making it easy to kill a roomful of children.

Ok, fair enough. So I'd like two to see two things from you:
1) What is it about semi-automatic guns that is so important that mass-killings (which at this point are so frequent that I don't even blink an eye at them - then again, it might have to do with the fact that I live near Oakland) are a valid trade-off?
2) If not via gun-control, how do you propose to approach the problem of gun homicides?

Comment Re:Reduce gun violence? (Score 1) 436

Again you demonstrate a failure to understand rights.

No, I understand rights perfectly fine. You, on the other hand, don't seem to understand what it takes for rights to actually exist in a society. It's the basic difference between philosophy and politics. Furthermore, merely yelling "it doesn't MATTER WHY I NEED IT" does very little to advance your position. All that it tells me is that you think your philosophy should need no explanation, and should be implemented above all others. That's a dangerous road to go down - one which you seem to be blissfully unaware of.

The law was ignored. Two laws won't be less ignored. Ten laws won't be less ignored.

Very true. However, it also makes no sense to argue that because there are law-breakers, there's no point to laws. The idea is that there are different angles of a problem that can be covered by different laws. Example:
Law 1) it's illegal to kill anyone.
Law 2) it's illegal to shoot shells from a tank outside of military exercises or missions.
Law 3) it's illegal to dump cyanide into a river.

You can start at Law 1, and realize that it's a lot easier to prevent deaths from occurring by reducing the occurrence of certain events. The reason that additional laws do work is because there's a cost to purely act after a catastrophic event has happened, and that that cost is generally much higher than a bit of prevention.

Nobody is talking about making it easy to kill a roomful of children, and it is hyperbole like yours that makes the discussion a waste of time.

Except that I'm talking about something that actually happened, and that that event was facilitated by the existence of semi-automatic weapons. You can't just wish reality to go away.

Comment Re:Unauthorized (Score 1) 436

Interesting. However, if we go by the idea that the constitution enumerates specific powers of the federal government, and that all laws that cover topics that aren't explicitly listed in it are unconstitutional.... well, I think that ship sailed about 6 months after the signing of the constitution. Granted, there is an interesting concept in there of what kind of government you can have with that interpretation, but somehow, I think that is either a minority opinion in the US (just judging by what laws ARE being passed and supported by the population), or focuses that interpretation exclusively on the topic covered by the 2nd Amendment.

Comment Re:Reduce gun violence? (Score 2) 436

Wow - maybe all hope isn't lost. An actual point of discussion.

At the core, the reason is because these people are professionals. This implies background checks, tracking of their tools, and the ability to remove them from their position if they are not capable of performing their job. Furthermore, because they're government workers, it also implies a final oversight by the voters. Don't like the legislation covering the Secret Service? Vote out the legislators who did a bad job, and vote in those who will provide it.

Note that I don't mean that because carrying guns is their job, that they will never abuse them, or that because they're government employees, that they are somehow better than other employees. But instead, that there are processes and checks in place to minimize abuse, and that there is an express ability by every person in the country to influence how those jobs are carried out.

More generally, should non-military government personnel have access to weapons that are prohibited to civilians? Why?

The very short answer is no, they should not. The slightly longer answer is that if every civilian is subject to the same checks and regulations as the non-military government personnel, then every civilian should get the same level of access. Note that this implies that said access can be revoked in a similar fashion. Abuse your gun, lose your right to use it. There's an even longer response that would go into what constitutes proper regulation and checks, but that's too much for a post on a website. However, I'll leave you with this: why restrict your question to non-military personnel? Could you see a situation where any citizen could gain access to any type of military hardware?

Comment Re:Reduce gun violence? (Score 1) 436

I'm sorry that you're offended by that term. Do you also get offended every time someone calls you a liar when you're lying? Because that was the alternative. You're either willfully ignorant of the current terms of the debate, or you are actively lying about it. I thought I'd be charitable and assume that you're merely actively ignorant. But maybe I was wrong.

Comment Re:Reduce gun violence? (Score 1) 436

Show me where in the current discussion people are arguing for no guns. There are some group whose goal that might be, but they're not the current crop of politicians, they're not in this discussion, they're not in the judiciary... which makes them a fringe group. Why then bring them up? Or do we need to bring up timecube guy anytime there's a discussion about the space-time continuum?

Comment Re:Unauthorized (Score 1) 436

Scratch this. We're done. We're not even speaking the same language, and clearly hold values and ideas about a working society that are 100% incompatible. I can only hope that you consider democracy important enough to not just impose your opinion on others by just shooting them.

Comment Re:Reduce gun violence? (Score 1) 436

Then where is our militia? Where is the regular training that is expected from the ENTIRE population? Where are the drills, the regulations about how those arms are to be kept, maintained and accounted for? Give me a militia, and I'll give you the AR15 - or heck, any type of military weaponry the militia deems necessary.

Comment Re:Reduce gun violence? (Score 1) 436

You're right. Rights don't need justification for their exercise. However, they do need justification for their existence and their implementation. Why? Because we use them to figure out what is right and what is wrong, and that is something that does need to be debated out in the open.

And before you go on about natural rights and inherent rights, please read up on how we came to consider them as such. Those ideas weren't handed down from some holy text, they were debated out in the open, found to be improving society, and then implemented in our constitution.

Dead is dead. Someone killed by an AR15 is just as dead as someone killed by a .22 derringer.

Correct. Then why do you need the features of an AR15, instead of just a Derringer?

And, in most cases, the person killing a room full of school children was breaking the same laws as one killing one child at a time.

Correct. Those laws can generally be summed up by "Though shall not kill." But even though only one set of laws was broken, I'm sure you agree that killing one child is not as bad as killing many children, yes? Then, why make it easy to kill a room full of children, as opposed to one?

Comment Re:Unauthorized (Score 3, Insightful) 436

I'm sorry, but you're missing out on three things: one, the full second amendment includes a bit about a militia. You don't get to ignore parts of the constitution you don't like. Two, we're already restricting what arms can be carried. Or do you think you can just get a fully-automatic weapon, or an anti-tank missile? Three, licensing is not the same thing as a ban. Yes, it is a restriction, but only at the dictionary level. I hope you understand context.

Man, I know you're one of the more level-headed posters here. If you're going down the rabbit hole of selectively quoting the constitution, ignoring commonly-accepted precedent and basic logic, I'm not sure if there's any hope for any sort of reasoned debate anymore.

Comment Re:Reduce gun violence? (Score -1, Troll) 436

What I, and most other gun owners, have a problem with is this person who is so heavily protected by guns (paid for by our taxes) telling us that we have no right to protect ourselves with guns.

You are a fucking moron. You know why you are a moron? Because he never said that. And no, gun control is not the same as no guns for anyone. Quite frankly, your insistence on this strawman is really disturbing.

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