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Push to revive assault weapons ban begins in U.S. Congress

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Feinstein’s bill would ban semi-automatic rifles that can accept a detachable magazine clip. It would also prohibit clips with more than 10 rounds.

Well that's going a whole lot of nowhere. Given those parameters I doubt they would even manage to drum up a majority in the Senate let alone the House. Unless you're from New York or California gun control is generally a toxic phrase during elections even if polls suggest a majority of Americans support it.

Republicans screwed up in the last election, maybe if the Democrats screw up just as bad this election cycle it will sap enough support to start getting some independents to show up on the ballots. Ah well, either way I get to watch a class a squabble that will likely lead to nowhere.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

This won't pass muster. The Supreme Court's decision in District of Columbia v. Heller made clear that every law abiding citizen has an individual constitutional right to keep and bear arms.

Besides, fellow gun owner Harry Reid is on record saying the rights of responsible gun owners should not be compromised by individuals who use firearms to commit crimes, and he will continue to defend the Second Amendment and to protect the interests of us gun owners.

RR

-5 ( +1 / -6 )

It would also prohibit clips with more than 10 rounds.

Does that mean Dianne Feinstein will give up her concealed carry permit?

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Obama ... vowed to make gun control a top priority in his second term.

If this were truly a serious issue for Obama & Co, why didn't they pass the legislation during his first 90 days in office when he had zero chance of it not being passed?

RR

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romeo

every law abiding citizen has an individual constitutional right to keep and bear arms.

Does that include surface to air missiles? You never know when Obama is gonna declare martial law and send the feds after you in an Apache helicopter.

If this were truly a serious issue for Obama & Co, why didn't they pass the legislation during his first 90 days in office when he had zero chance of it not being passed?

That's actually a good question. I was disappointed that Obama didn't make an issue of it four years ago. Just shows how much power the NRA has, even over Dems.

BTW, it wouldn't have passed back then either.

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"fixing our broken mental health system,” the NRA said

Let's start with the NRA.

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Why didn't Obama try to enact gun legislation in his first term or discuss it during the election campaign? That's easy to answer with two words: JOB SECURITY. Look at the unfulfilled first-campaign promises. He had a better chance of doing something in his first two years, but didn't. Why not? JOB SECURITY.

And, SAMs? Not necessary, but available from the same drug-supply folks armed by Eric Holder's Fast And Furious goons.

-4 ( +0 / -4 )

America needs to wake up and say something, you know, we are NOT safe with every Tom, Dick and Harry running around with assault weapons, we are not safe by having fools buying these weapons and attaching BAYONETS to them! I hope to never read of some idiot fool going into a kindergarten etc..and using BAYONETS that now are LEGAL in the USA, just crazy!! I do hope and pray Mr.Obama seizes this great opportunity to go after all of these gun loving fools that think that being armed to the teeth is their god given right, sorry maybe over in Cambodia, but do we want the USA to be the next Cambodia??

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Does that include surface to air missiles? You never know when Obama is gonna declare martial law and send the feds after you in an Apache helicopter.

The 2nd Amendment only applies to weapons that you can carry that are in common use and are not unusual/dangerous. In this case surface to air missiles are not common weapons.

we are not safe by having fools buying these weapons and attaching BAYONETS to them!

When was the last time someone was bayoneted in the US? Besides all you would have to do is just take duct tape and wrap it around the knife that is on the gun in order to get around it.

-4 ( +0 / -4 )

The military aside, no one needs assault weapons. You'll notice how many on this thread and others who defend the guns fail to actually specify assault weapons in their comments; instead they just enjoy feeding the usual gun-nutter paranoia that "Obama's is gunna take ourses guns!' as though he's going to outlaw ownership of all said weapons and not just machine guns. Romeo Ramen, for example doesn't mention the world 'assault' before guns once, just drones on and on about the second amendment and guns in general.

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If you want to see shrieking conservative hysteria about the guns issue, check out redstate.com

They shriek in CAPITAL LETTERS that Obama is "coming after our guns."

This type of unthinking rhetoric is typical of the conservative position - uncivilized, tilted strongly toward encouraging wanton violence, and something that no first world nation should tolerate.

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I am generally very anti gun and love living in low gun, low violence Japan but.....Lately I saw a pro gun guy called Pratt out-cool Piers on this issue that and another video made me think about a couple of issues.

1) Gun deaths do go way up when there are guns but violent crime in general may be impacted for the better. Britons are always beating the crap out of each other. They'd find it a lot more difficult if they were armed to the teeth. But I don't think that assault weapons are needed for self defence, except in extreme situations.

2) The problem really is not only the muggers but also the government. Even factoring in the non-gun violence and non-gun death that occurs in Britain, Britain is a less violent place. However looking at Europe as a whole, governments in Europe have done a lot of killing, even of their own subjects, and perhaps this might not have happened if their populaces were armed. Even the fact of owning a gun, may make one less inclined to leave things to the government. Japan is wonderfully safe, but I also wonder if Japanese do not have a bit too much of a tendency to leave things to their government. If the population has guns, does it lead to a more self-governing mentality?

Having said that, even with their guns it seems to me that the Americans are being encouraged into falsely justified wars and death at the hands of the government. Perhaps they don't have enough assault rifles.

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It's totally meaningless to ban assault rifles if the ban will be rescinded later as it was under Bush. This kind of yo-yo legislation alternates the ban with periods when buyers can arm themselves to the teeth. Attempts at enforcement are likely to end up with an impressive body count. So Americans seem to be fated to pay a high price in blood for caving in to NRA bullying. (Note: US deaths by firearms since 1968 exceed 1 million, or more than the deaths in all of its foreign wars combined.)

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Note: US deaths by firearms since 1968 exceed 1 million, or more than the deaths in all of its foreign wars combined.

That is true with a lot of things though. For example 100,000 people die each year from Alcohol in the US. So about three times as many people in the US have died from Alcohol than from firearms since 1968, which is way more than the deaths of all wars the US has fought in. 400,000 people die each year from Tobacco, lets say that was the number of Americans dying each year since 1968 that means more than 15 million Americans have died from Tobacco since 1968. 130,000 Americans die each year from medical mistakes by medical professionals, so much for the US have the worlds best health care system.

Truth of the matter is that the US is making progress on Gun violence, it is on the way down and has been since 1993.

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That is true with a lot of things though. For example 100,000 people die each year from Alcohol in the US. So about three times as many people in the US have died from Alcohol than from firearms since 1968, which is way more than the deaths of all wars the US has fought in. 400,000 people die each year from Tobacco, lets say that was the number of Americans dying each year since 1968 that means more than 15 million Americans have died from Tobacco since 1968.

But wouldn't you agree there's a difference between destroying your lungs or liver over a period of decades and having your brains blown out by an angry person with a firearm?

Truth of the matter is that the US is making progress on Gun violence, it is on the way down and has been since 1993.

That's not especially reassuring to the parents of the Sandy Hook victims.

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But wouldn't you agree there's a difference between destroying your lungs or liver over a period of decades and having your brains blown out by an angry person with a firearm?

But does the difference really matter though? I mean if the argument is that Guns kill to many people than that argument can be applied to a whole bunch of other things that kill just as much if not more.

As someone who has watched their own grand parents and several aunts and uncles waste away due Tobacco and Alcohol and watch them be in tremendous pain while dying for several months if not years I would say a quick death by a bullet to the head would be merciful. I mean really you think wasting away while in pain or illness over decades is better?

That's not especially reassuring to the parents of the Sandy Hook victims.

Well in the context of gun death numbers what would be reassuring? That it isn't moving up or down just staying flat or would it be reassuring to them that the number is going up? I'm going to say that knowing that gun violence is on the way down would be reassuring to them.

I mean if one of your relatives was killed by a drunk driver recently would it be reassuring to you if you saw a week later a report on the news that said death by drunk drivers was down for the year, probably not because the incident is still very much affecting you, you are still grieving, but if you went out a year later and saw another news report that drunk driver deaths are down for that year would that be reassuring to you? Probably.

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Stay on topic please. Tobacco and drunk driving are not relevant to this discussion.

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@noliving commenting that unusual/dangerous weapons are not allowed in the U.S.

Doesn't the lethality of all styles of guns equate to "dangerous"? Isn't it "unusual" for civilians to encounter anyone besides the police holding weapons? Why, with the right amount of training and a background check, missiles shouldn't cause much more social disruption than your average semiautomatic machine gun!

Look up the weapons stash belonging to the guy who was just arrested in Minnesota for being a felon in possession of guns. Crazy how easy it was for him to amass more than a dozen "normal/safe" weapons without any red flags.

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"It won't reduce criminal gun violence. I won't make anyone safer. But it WILL embolden those bent on pursuing violence."

It WILL make people safer, and those that are emboldened to pursue violence won't have the ease of access to such weapons as they do now.

"And further, it WILL criminalize a significant portion of presently law-abiding citizens."

Not if they give up their assault rifles, which they most certainly do NOT need one bit. And why do you guys ALWAYS fail to answer to the fact that 'lawful citizens' have such weapons taken away from them and used in massacres? You simply CANNOT deny less damage would have been done in Connecticut if the murderer (and keep in mind he was a lawful citizen until the committed the massacre!) did not have access to the assault weapon in particular.

But hey, I've no doubt the next US gun massacre is just around the corner. I've no doubt it will involve at least one assault weapon, probably more and even a lawfully owned rocket launcher and grenades. And I've no doubt gun-nutters will curse the assailant, more because he's made their argument harder than the fact he carried out a massacre. You could almost hear the collective groan of NRA members when it was revealed the shooter in New Mexico last week used an AR-15, the same weapon used by James Holmes in Aurora, Colorado and Adam Lanza in Newtown, Connecticut.

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It is paramount that one's stated opinions be INFORMED opinions and not to emanate from lack of information or experience. From that perspective I inquire:

How many of you posting here have actually:

A. Fired any kind of firearm?

B. Had any kind of firearm training?

C. Fired an actual Assault weapon(such as M16)?

The reason I ask is that the lack of knowledge/experience, as opposed to stupidity, is a breeding ground for fear. If you've never had any training with firearms, I highly recommend that you get some. That's not to convert anyone into a pro-guns person, but rather to remove the veil of lack of knowledge that clouds the rational mind.

I answer Yes to all the above. I don't love guns. I have a deep respect for them, and that respect is tempered with the knowledge of their destructive power. Most importantly is the value of human life.

The proposed legislation is as wrong-headed as a football-bat. It won't reduce criminal gun violence. I won't make anyone safer. But it WILL embolden those bent on pursuing violence. And further, it WILL criminalize a significant portion of presently law-abiding citizens. That, in and of itself, is an act of tyrannical violence. My brother, who is in law enforcement, and I agree on very few subjects, but this one we are nearly of one mind.

The lack of knowledge in this matter clouds rational judgement.

-3 ( +0 / -3 )

Herve: I have a deep respect for them, and that respect is tempered with the knowledge of their destructive power.

Unfortunately, that is not a requirement for buying a gun. I applaud your respect but we both know not everyone has it and it doesn't stop them from getting their hands on one.

Noliving: For example 100,000 people die each year from Alcohol in the US.

Do people break into schools with whiskey and demand that kids drink themselves to death?

Noliving: I'm going to say that knowing that gun violence is on the way down would be reassuring to them.

Would it matter either way? If gun crime were increasing would you support more gun control? To most gun supporters I'm guessing it would be reason to go out and buy more guns.

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Herve: "It is paramount that one's stated opinions be INFORMED opinions and not to emanate from lack of information or experience. From that perspective I inquire"

So, we must have experience in firing weapons to know that assault weapons, used in in many massacres, like the AR, are unnecessary? I need to go to a firing range and be trained to have an opinion on the deaths of so many children by people with access to lawfully owned machine guns?

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Superlib,

" Unfortunately, that(respect for the power of firesrms) is not a requirement for buying a gun. I applaud your respect but we both know not everyone has it and it doesn't stop them from getting their hands on one."

Yes, I agree with you on that. Violent criminals will do criminal acts. Even in places where guns are strictly prohibited, they are and will be available, but only to those flagrantly willing to take such risks, and typically with nefarious intentions.

Do suggest prosecution for thought-crime as well? Because that's what it would take to prevent such crimes.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

RR, it wouldn't have passed and would have poisoned the well resulting in nothing passing.

-3 ( +0 / -3 )

Is it not ironic that the NRA's Wayne LaPierre's pre-election prediction that should Obama win re-election, the right to bear arms would be under distinct threat has proven already to have been absolutely correct?

I REALLY wish Obama would have had the integrity to propose and actively pursue such legislation during his first term or in the run-up for re-election. Oh, right, JOB SECURITY.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Herve: "Is it not ironic that the NRA's Wayne LaPierre's pre-election prediction that should Obama win re-election, the right to bear arms would be under distinct threat has proven already to have been absolutely correct?"

Ummm... no, that's not ironic at all; you should check the definition of 'irony'. What's more, suggesting he was 'predicting' what would happen if Obama won is like saying, "I predict if I step in water I will get wet". It was a well known fact Obama was going to look at tightening gun-control laws, Herve, and in fact the NRA was running around screeching "They's is gonna take our guns! Vote Republican!" BECAUSE it was fact. Now he's simply living up to his promises, while gun-nutters like LaPierre suggest the right to bear arms is under threat (when Obama's just trying to put back into place the ban on ASSAULT RIFLES!!). Geez, could you guys be any more uninformed and paranoid?

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Herve: "The lack of knowledge in this matter clouds rational judgement."

Why don't you ask all the parents of the murdered children (pick your massacre) if they can answer yes to the three questions you insinuate as necessary to have an opinion on a ban of assault weapons. I dare you to tell one who says no that their opinion/judgement on their child being killed is clouded because they are 'uninformed'.

Again, you don't have to know the details of a semi or fully automatic weapon to know they are not what the writers of the constitution had in mind when including the idiotic 2nd Amendment (something which should be changed radically).

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Smith:" So, we must have experience in firing weapons to know that assault weapons, used in in many massacres, like the AR, are unnecessary? I need to go to a firing range and be trained to have an opinion on the deaths of so many children by people with access to lawfully owned machine guns?"

A Saul Alinsky disciple's non-sequitor retort.

But you SHOULD understand that:

A. Murder is wrong, regardless of whom the victim(s) is/are or the method.

B. Machine guns are not lawfully owned.(since 1932)

C. An AR-15 is neither an assault weapon nor a machine gun.

D. Murders intentionally disregard laws.

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

Ha, this getting better and better. A Charleton Heston type intoning "murder is wrong" and lecturing us that "an AR-15 is neither an assault weapon" nor your grandmother's Daisy brand BB gun. Why the negative definition? What is the best euphemism for us to use for the AR-15 since it is not a dangerous or unusual weapon?

0 ( +0 / -0 )

" It was a well known fact Obama was going to look at tightening gun-control laws,"

But he lacked the gumption to ACT. Until after the election, of course.

" Because people like LaPierre are indeed gun-nutters, but calling another poster on this board, directly or by insinuation, 'ignorant', is not only an attempt to insult but a clear sign of the inability to argue a point without resorting to said insult in an attempt to undermine the other poster(s)."

Ha! That's rich. There was no such insinuation. Big difference between one being ignorant on a specific topic and being an ignorant person in general. And "in an attempt to undermine the other poster(s)" is indeed ironic, or shall I say ironical, just for giggles?

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Smith, " when including the idiotic 2nd Amendment (something which should be changed radically)."

Now, the truth comes out.

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Would it matter either way? If gun crime were increasing would you support more gun control? To most gun supporters I'm guessing it would be reason to go out and buy more guns.

Just for consideration, conversely when the perception really takes hold that crime is dropping then gun control starts to happen voluntarily as people feel safer and do not perceive that they even need to purchase or own a gun. I've known many folks over my lifetime that are quite proud of saying, "I live in a safe neighborhood" and would never even consider needing a gun in the house. Violent crime and gun related violence has been dropping like a rock over the past decades and the type of an overall gun control policy that I wish my country and politicians were striving for would be a policy that highlights a pro-active community involvement with law enforcement and digs into the weeds as to what is really working in causing crime to be at such low levels.

My feeling its more due to explosion of cell phones and instant messaging without being obvious and instilling a greater fear of getting caught in someone contemplating a crime before acting call it my, " the watched pot never boils theory" but I digress. I also think that concealed carry has been factor getting crime down overall and that may not sound like a gun control policy, but in fact it is one. If an individual feels he doesn't need a gun because he feels others may have one and he doesn't need one and that this is providing him a sense of protection, then he isn't going out to buy one, you've just keep a gun out of a persons hands and that is gun control at its most basic.

Getting to the root of what has been working in dropping crime rates coupled with a real perception that one is much safer to go about ones life without needing a firearm but knowing that option is always open to a free man to make that choice on his own. In my opinion this is not only the only right approach, but an approach that is so uniquely American in honoring and protecting individual freedom to either choose or not choose the right to bear arms, as this right ultimately does rest with the individual and not with the State.

I am for one just sick of the posturing, demonization, sound bites and wedge issues that continue to be used to do nothing but divide and conquer on this issue. Done always with eyes toward what phrases do play the best in focus groups and get repeated over and over until any rational discussion is just impossible to have at all. Just done to win the next election cycle. I am not naive enough to believe that this will change anytime soon, but I refuse to give up hope that there is still enough common sense and common ground left in America that the right balance in the future can be struck between individual rights and a sense of overall community safety to craft a gun policy that the vast majority of Americans can and will be comfortable with.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Thumbs up, Sail.

Wikipedia summarizes Justice John Paul Stevens' dissent to District of Columbia v. Heller as such:

The Stevens dissent seems to rest on four main points of disagreement: that the Founders would have made the individual right aspect of the Second Amendment express if that was what was intended; that the "militia" preamble and exact phrase "to keep and bear arms" demands the conclusion that the Second Amendment touches on state militia service only; that many lower courts' later "collective-right" reading of the Miller decision constitutes stare decisis, which may only be overturned at great peril; and that the Court has not considered gun-control laws (e.g., the National Firearms Act) unconstitutional. The dissent concludes, "The Court would have us believe that over 200 years ago, the Framers made a choice to limit the tools available to elected officials wishing to regulate civilian uses of weapons.... I could not possibly conclude that the Framers made such a choice."

The fact is that the government does regulate weapons and discriminates by weapon type; to insist, as some do, that any such regulation is by itself unconstitutional - which implies that, for example, flame throwers and anti-aircraft missiles should be legalized - would open up such a floodgate of revulsion that the very existence of the 2nd Amendment would be in jeopardy.

The NRA and its supporters had better tread carefully.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Herve: "But you SHOULD understand that: "A. Murder is wrong, regardless of whom the victim(s) is/are or the method."

You're really on a roll here today! Where on earth did I ever say anything to the contrary? In fact, I think saying that guns in general and assault weapons in particular are unnecessary and are only used for the purpose of killing is pretty indicative that you think murder is wrong. Are you suggesting that people who think owning guns is wrong think murder by other methods is acceptable? If so I say you ought to go join the Republican party and stop saying you're a fence-sitter because you'd be a shoe-in.

"But he lacked the gumption to ACT. Until after the election, of course."

Oh my! Imagine someone living up to their election promises after being elected! Were he not you'd be screaming the other way around. Like I said, you're really on a roll today.

Oh, and fully automatic weapons (machine guns) ARE legal in the US -- they are just better regulated than non-fully automatic weapons, are taxed, cannot be imported (legally), and require background checks. Call them '

0 ( +1 / -1 )

This so-called story only scratches the surface of Feinstein's proposal that calls for 150 weapons to be banned; including rifles, hand guns and shotguns. Any politician who votes for this bill will be out of a job in 2014.

RR

-3 ( +0 / -3 )

What RR failed to mention is that they are all semi-automatic weapons which may carry large clips.

What he doesn't seem to understand is that this is the whole point.

Here is the list:

http://www.ksdk.com/news/article/358741/28/Feinstein-gun-ban-law-Which-types-of-firearms-would-be-banned

1 ( +1 / -0 )

"With 310 million guns in civilian hands"

Heck, with all these guns, who needs the military?

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B. Machine guns are not lawfully owned.(since 1932)

D. Murders intentionally disregard laws.

When was the last time (in the U.S.) that a genuine criminal used a machine gun? (I use the term "genuine criminal" to differentiate from someone who might have had a legal reason to possess a machine gun and used it improperly.)

Hasn't that ban proven effective?

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Yabits, machine guns- or fully-automatic weapons - are Type II weapons, which, while not technically being illegal (depending on the state), are heavily regulated. More info here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Title_II_weapons

Herve, thanks - you gave me so much to work with!

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Smith, though we disagree quite deeply on this issue, I haven't disparaged you for your opinion. We just disagree. You view elimination of rights as the solution. I don't. The proposed legislation eliminates rights of the people. That's the crux.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Yabits, machine guns- or fully-automatic weapons - are Type II weapons, which, while not technically being illegal (depending on the state), are heavily regulated.

And so my question is why can't the weapons that have been developed to closely approximate the -- for lack of a better term -- the "killing power per minute" -- of fully-automatic weapons be regulated the same way, as Type II weapons?

Yes, knives, baseball bats and cars and be used to kill, but their KP/m is on the low end of the scale.

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" machine guns- or fully-automatic weapons - are Type II weapons, which, while not technically being illegal (depending on the state), are heavily regulated." And between the regulation, taxes, etc effectively takes them completely out of the equation, thus a moot point.

But this legislation doesn't address that point.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I don't know what Feinstein and her security detail are up to, but the gun industry is running at 300% of capacity and damn near every gun is sold out. How many more guns does she truly expect the US import and manufacture this year to keep up the demand that she is feeding?

=this is exactly why Politicians should not be allowed to trade stocks or worse allowed to criminal "insider trade." =people should demand a financial statement on a weekly basis from these rogue political traders that make millions for themselves and billions for others.

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It WILL make people safer, and those that are emboldened to pursue violence won't have the ease of access to such weapons as they do now."

The studies prove your statement to be incorrect.

"Not if they give up their assault rifles, which they most certainly do NOT need one bit."

Again, this is purely your opinion, and not factual.

"And why do you guys ALWAYS fail to answer to the fact that 'lawful citizens' have such weapons taken away from them and used in massacres? You simply CANNOT deny less damage would have been done in Connecticut if the murderer (and keep in mind he was a lawful citizen until the committed the massacre!) did not have access to the assault weapon in particular."

Ah! Let's clear up a couple inaccuracies wrapped up in that statement. ONE person had weapons taken, namely Adam Lanza's mother. Adam's FIRST crime was premeditation. Nary a caring mother would reasonably anticipate that their own child would take a gun to his/her own mother in such a way. To my knowledge, there's no factual information to indicate the woman failed to adequately secure her weapons. It IS known, however, that Adam was clever, but again gaining access to those weapons was also a crime as was MURDERING his own mother. So, even before stepping out the door he had already committed several felonies. One could also postulate that had Adam not avidly played video games such as Mortal Combat, or whatever, he may also not have been desensitized to the horror of shooting people. I'm not blaming video games, but the blame is squarely on Adam as every crime is on the criminal.

The War on Drugs has contributed greatly to violent crime in America, and many other countries, but the supply of drugs is unabated.

The proposed law would not have prevented the terrible tragedy in Sandy Hook, however.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

The fact is that the government does regulate weapons and discriminates by weapon type; to insist, as some do, that any such regulation is by itself unconstitutional - which implies that, for example, flame throwers and anti-aircraft missiles should be legalized - would open up such a floodgate of revulsion that the very existence of the 2nd Amendment would be in jeopardy.

I agree, and it may be the simple lack of an adequate metric for destructive force per unit of time that has kept the issue of reasonable regulations from making progress. I strongly feel that such a metric is rather easily and scientifically attainable.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Nary a caring mother would reasonably anticipate that their own child would take a gun to his/her own mother in such a way.

LOL! Right, because it's so unheard of.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Right, Yabits - many studies have shown that the firing rate is a major factor in the death rate of mass murders. Hold down the firing rate, hold down the number of victims.

More, though, the Supreme Court has really made a mish-mash of the Second Amendment. In effect, they agree that "A well regulated militia being necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed, " and then go about infringing the hell out of it: Who can carry what when, how and where. Those convicted of certain crimes? - No. Vast classes of weapons? - No. Concealed or not, loaded or not, to certain locations - well, it get's confusing as Japanese road signage.

If clarity makes good law, this stinks.

Best would be if a future Supreme Court took up Justice Stevens' argument and reinterpreted the 2nd Amendment along those lines: That the "right" to bear weapons belongs only to a government-recognized "militia," and that for all else, it is a privilege, akin to a drivers license. This would rid the American legal system of the existing relative garbage conservatives love to pretend is absolute - that what the Constitution guarantees as your unalienable right is by necessity what we rather capriciously say it is; when one so-called "right" can be treated so lightly, others may well be adversely affected. Rather, gun ownership viewed as a privilege would lead to a far more logical and legally defensible system - as is the case in most other advanced countries.

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Under Connecticut law,[70] the 20-year-old Lanza was old enough to carry a long gun,[71] but too young to legally own or carry handguns.[72]

nbc: Adam Lanza, 20, went to a Dick’s Sporting Goods store in Danbury, Conn., on Tuesday to buy the weapon, but was turned down because he didn’t want to undergo a background check or abide by the state’s waiting period for gun sales, the officials said.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

" Best would be if a future Supreme Court took up Justice Stevens' argument and reinterpreted the 2nd Amendment along those lines: That the "right" to bear weapons belongs only to a government-recognized "militia," and that for all else, it is a privilege, akin to a drivers license. This would rid the American legal system of the existing relative garbage conservatives love to pretend is absolute - that what the Constitution guarantees as your unalienable right is by necessity what we rather capriciously say it is; when one so-called "right" can be treated so lightly, others may well be adversely affected. Rather, gun ownership viewed as a privilege would lead to a far more logical and legally defensible system - as is the case in most other advanced countries."

Riiiiiiight...first reduce the right to adequate self-defense to a privilege granted to only some, those deemed worthy enough, a privilege that can also easily become withheld, and make even those few sheepishly compliant. Yeah, that'll go over well.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Riiiiiiight...first reduce the right to adequate self-defense to a privilege granted to only some, those deemed worthy enough, a privilege that can also easily become withheld, and make even those few sheepishly compliant. Yeah, that'll go over well.

Riiight - like a drivers license. Notice how the rich and famous in LA can swoosh to work because the hoi polli are restricted from driving.

Really, those who advocate gun ownership as the only barrier between the Constitution and mayhem are those who believe the least in the American people.

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Herve: Is it not ironic that the NRA's Wayne LaPierre's pre-election prediction that should Obama win re-election, the right to bear arms would be under distinct threat has proven already to have been absolutely correct?

Obama's directives mostly deal with the legal issues of gun ownership and a few other issues relating to crime. The other items like the assault ban he put before Congress. We can both agree that the chances of them passing are slim, which I'm sure he knows, and you know as well.

LaPierre is exposing himself as an extremist. His comments about arming every school and following the Israeli model (completely different situation) as well as making horror movie style commercials just make him and the NRA look bad. The NRA also endorsed a shooting video game weeks after the last shooting which is just bad form. I'm guessing he wakes up in the morning and finds some kind of threat to guns that he feels he needs to squash.

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sailwind: Just for consideration, conversely when the perception really takes hold that crime is dropping then gun control starts to happen voluntarily as people feel safer and do not perceive that they even need to purchase or own a gun.

Wouldn't gun sales be declining in that situation? Have they?

I also think that concealed carry has been factor getting crime down overall and that may not sound like a gun control policy, but in fact it is one. If an individual feels he doesn't need a gun because he feels others may have one and he doesn't need one and that this is providing him a sense of protection, then he isn't going out to buy one, you've just keep a gun out of a persons hands and that is gun control at its most basic.

I just don't believe that people aren't buying guns because they feel that another person with a gun will be there to protect them.

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You simply CANNOT deny less damage would have been done in Connecticut if the murderer (and keep in mind he was a lawful citizen until the committed the massacre!) did not have access to the assault weapon in particular.

A lawful citizen who was in illegal possession of that firearm even if he didn't steal it from his mother or kill anyone to get that firearm.

So you are saying if he was using a pump action, lever action, or bolt action firearm with lets say a 5 round magazine and at least 6 minutes before police arrived(that is the amount of time it took for police to even be notified of the shooting, Adam had 6 minutes before police were even called after he started shooting) he wouldn't have been able to kill the same amount of people?

Do people break into schools with whiskey and demand that kids drink themselves to death?

At fraternities they do SuperLib. The point that was being made was that guns have killed more people since 1968 then all soldiers killed in all armed conflicts the US has served/fought in. My point is that is true for a lot of things such as Alcohol that has killed way more than guns have in the same amount of time frame in the US. I mean if the argument is that we need to get serious about guns because of that figure well then we need to have the same attitude on Alcohol and medical mistakes and tobacco.

If gun crime were increasing would you support more gun control?

I already am in favor of more gun control in terms of background checks and making them a lot more thorough and doing an annual mental evaluation. What I don't believe in though is this idea of banning military style semi-automatic rifles and banning magazines over 10 rounds is going to do anything. Background checks is really all you can do to prevent criminal use of a firearm.

I need to go to a firing range and be trained to have an opinion on the deaths of so many children by people with access to lawfully owned machine guns?

Well it would certainty help in showing that the AWB won't do anything to prevent mass shootings or reduce the carnage when you have break-action, lever action, bolt action and pump action firearms available.

The argument to me is well if we banned automatic transmission cars and had everyone use manual transmissions or vice versa there would be less accidents. Anyone who has ever driven would know that changing cars from an automatic to a manual or a manual to an automatic would know it would have zero impact on car accidents or the carnage of a car accident.

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When was the last time (in the U.S.) that a genuine criminal used a machine gun? (I use the term "genuine criminal" to differentiate from someone who might have had a legal reason to possess a machine gun and used it improperly.)

If you google for them they are not hard to find, for example a bank robbery was done using a machine gun in Washington DC in 2004 for example, it wasn't any of the registered machine guns either it was one that smuggled into the US.

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"I just don't believe that people aren't buying guns because they feel that another person with a gun will be there to protect them."

Do you mean that you don't believe that people ARE buying guns because they feel that another person with a gun WON'T be there to protect them?

From a WSJ article from 2009: " In August, the number of background checks performed by the Federal Bureau of Investigation's Instant Criminal Background Check System was up 12.3% from the same month in 2008 to about 1.1 million.

That is down from the nearly 42% increase of November but is still a growth rate that would be the envy of virtually every other consumer product category.

And, while the number of background checks is a good barometer of sales, that doesn't tell the whole story as some of them may have been performed on purchases of multiple firearms. In addition, some private transfers and gun show sales are exempt so the actual number of guns sold is likely higher.

The main force fueling this gun-buying binge is the election last year of President Barack Obama and the large Democratic majorities in the Senate and House of Representatives. Democrats are generally perceived to be hostile to the interests of gun enthusiasts and their organizations, so a type of "buy now while you still can" mentality took hold.

"It really began in the middle of October last year," said Lawrence Keane, vice-president and general counsel of the National Shooting Sports Foundation. "Sales have been up in double-digits in every month since, except July, which is seasonally slow anyway."

"A big part of it is the political dynamic," Keane said. "People have legitimate concerns about new regulations [although] economic worries are a factor as well. We are also seeing a goodly number of first-time buyers and firearms safety education courses are filled all over the country."

http://articles.marketwatch.com/2009-09-18/industries/30719575_1_gun-show-number-of-background-checks-firearms

Prior to 2008, gun sales had been soft, so in this regard the controversy has been good for the economy.

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Wouldn't gun sales be declining in that situation? Have they?

How much press does declining crime rates get? How many times has President Obama been making speeches to law enforcement organizations praising this? How many times after a tragedy of a spree shooting is the press or Obama and Democrats also stressing that they are rare and couple that with the message crime rates overall are still dropping overall?

No offense, but your not going to convince me at all that if President Obama did these type actions highlighting the success in dropping crime that his fawning media wouldn't be reporting this as the greatest thing "eva" happening to the U.S under his leadership. But that's not the his or the Democrat agenda though so the press isn't going to counter gun ban or gun control initiatives on its own as evident by its total lack of even a cursory mention that violent crime is down in any story involving a shooting.

As I stated the perception overall is that we are not a safer country and that is counter to the real facts, and the Media has been failing all of us once again as advocacy reporting keeps trumping any real factual reporting in the U.S.

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Well smith, we're not amigos, are we.

My comment about machine guns not being legal is true, with very stringent, and few, exceptions.

Still hung up on the word "ignorant"? Let me give you a non-offensive example:

Though I am generally familiar with the workings of a television, I am ignorant regarding the circuitry contained therein. Before choosing a new television, perhaps I should become more informed of the differences between the LCD and LED types in order to make an informed decision and not just rely on the opinions of others.

The debate about the gun control legislation is deeply intertwined with the concept of individual rights and the rule of law. That is why the Second Amendment is so central.

From a WSJ article: " we should understand that the Second Amendment does not confer a right to bear arms; that right is pre-existent. The Second Amendment forbids government from abridging that right. This is a subtle but very important difference.

With respect to protecting our children: In other areas where we intend to create a "weapon-free zone" (courts, airports), we have locked doors, metal detectors and multiple armed guards. Any "weapon-free zone" that lacks these is little more than an imaginary bubble where predators may be assured of the lack of armed resistance. It is no coincidence that the most notorious mass killings (including the one in Norway) occur in such imaginary bubbles of protection. A less costly option is to allow responsible adults to be legally armed on campus."

When the Second Amendment was written, "well regulated" meant "well practiced." At the time, it was considered impractical for citizens to become well practiced with firearms, unless they had recourse to firearms in their daily civilian lives. Readers of American military history understand references to "regulars" and "irregulars," the former being practiced and regularly assembled militias (in some ways similar to our National Guard or Army), and the latter referring to less-practiced, ad hoc assemblies of combatants. "Well regulated" did not refer to the presence of regulations governing their activities.

The Rights pre-exist the formation of the Federal government. The Declaration of Independence is the seminal document.

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There are many differing views on which path to take in the gun control debate.

http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424127887323820104578211670087382426.html

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"those who advocate gun ownership as the only barrier between the Constitution and mayhem are those who believe the least in the American people."

I think you got that backwards. The people who support gun rights believe in the people and not in the politician.

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Think it goes like this, "The right of the citizens to keep and arm bears"; "The great object is, that every bear be armed ... Every one who is able may have a bear."

More greenhouse emissions from the mouths of Democratic Senators s it does not have a prayer of passing in the house of representatives.

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The so called "assault weapons" ban will fail because Harry "NRA" Reid will not let it pass in the Senate. Therefore, Obama will use more extra-Constitutional measures in an attempt to take away that portion of the Bill of Rights that he doesn't think anyone has a right to. A year later, the courts will slap him down again and that will be that.

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@Herve:

From a WSJ article: " we should understand that the Second Amendment does not confer a right to bear arms; that right is pre-existent. The Second Amendment forbids government from abridging that right. This is a subtle but very important difference.

That right there is a key difference between Liberals/Socialists and those that believe in America's founding principles.

The Left believes that rights are conferred by government. American's have traditionally believed that rights were self-evident and exist prior to and above the authority of any government as a matter of natural law. Thus the line in the Constitution that begins "We hold these truths to be self-evident..." Life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness are what the government is not allowed to infringe upon.

How individuals use these rights is where personal responsibility comes into play. They can lose them if they do not exercise them responsibly. From the Lefts perspective, these rights come from a governing elite that decide which types of rights people are going to be allowed to have and which ones they cannot have. Therefore, rights become arbitrary and are up to the whim of public opinion at any particular point in time. That's bad...

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STOP deflecting and bringing in ridiculous non-sequiturs like alcohol and tobacco -- they are UNRELATED!

Sigh...It is not a deflection Smith it is a refutation of Virtuoso's argument. His argument was that because something has killed more people than all the soldiers killed in combat in all the wars the US has fought in means that the US needs to get serious about it. There are a lot of things in the US that killed more people than soldiers in the past 40 years that no ones wants to get serious about in terms regulation or banning them because chances are it is something they take part in or enjoy and or they hide behind the argument that it is not designed to kill someone. Truth of the matter is that gun violence is on the way down in the US.

You have a choice about putting a bottle to your lips or a cigarette in your mouth.

Virtuoso's statistic included all forms of gun deaths, seeing as the vast majority of gun deaths are suicides you could say the same thing about gun deaths and that is you have a choice about putting a gun in your mouth.

The kids in Connecticut and in people in other massacres had NO choice about getting shot 11 or so times by maniacs who take their parents legally owned weapons.

Neither do the people who are killed by drunk drivers or who are assaulted or raped or killed by people who are intoxicated/under the influence of a drug. You act as if Alcohol is victimless.

Alcohol consumption has a very significant relationship with violent crime especially threatening people with a deadly weapon (IE guns) as well as homicide so in other words they are not unrelated.

stopyouthviolence.ucr.edu/pubs_by_topic/1.Alcohol%20&%20Violence%20-%20Connections,%20evidence.pdf

Oh, I'm sorry! I didn't realize those were the weapons he had and used to kill the 26 people there and do as much damage as he did! My bad. Oh wait... he didn't.

And that is suppose to prove what Smith? That there would be less people dead if he didn't use a semi-automatic but instead used a double action revolver or a pump action or a lever action or even a bolt action? Adam had over six minutes before anyone even called the cops, you can fire five shots in one second with pump action, lever action and or double action revolver. Half the people killed in Port Arthur were killed with a pump action firearm. More than half the people killed and wounded in Aurora were shot with a pump action shotgun. Do you honestly think if you banned semi-automatics, which by the way are legal to own in Canada and New Zealand especially military style rifles, and instead replaced them with pump action or lever action that it would reduce the number of mass shootings or even the carnage?

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