An examination of the NRA's argument against registering guns

Discussion in 'Politics' started by Xelor, Jun 10, 2018.

  1. Xelor Registered Senior Member

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    I read an article that presents the NRA's argument for objecting to gun registration.

    This thread's topic/purpose is to examine and discuss the logical soundness/cogency of the argument against gun registration.

    What is the NRA's argument? Briefly, this:
    • Premise: Gun registration will not stop any unlawful gun use.
      • This is a true statement.
    • Premise: Gun registration would make it easier to confiscate all of people's guns were ordinances prohibiting gun ownership passed.
      • In the abstract, this is true; however, the premise assumes be extant an event that is all but impossible to effect: absent repealing the 2nd Amendment, it's not possible to pass and have stand laws that generally prohibit gun ownership among the citizenry. That the argument against registration relies in part on such an assumption subjects the argument to counterfactual illogic, thus making the argument invalid.
        • "All" is important because the 2nd Amendment prevents states from can abstractly denying one's 2nd Amendment rights, but they can limit and/or regulate them. The way most states regulate guns is through licensing requirements and bans on certain guns within a given class. Those kinds of limits have generally been upheld by courts and Heller doesn't stop them. It's important to note that a limit and a ban are different things.

          To wit, the limits on the ownership of machine guns....Machines guns aren't banned in the U.S. -- Heller disallows it -- but they are subject to regulation. The National Firearms Act requires prospective owners to apply for permission to own machine guns whereafter, if granted, one must register the weapon. The Firearms Owners' Protection Act of 1986 prohibits civilian ownership of machine guns predating the act's passage. Unless the SCOTUS says otherwise, this kind of regulation is a legitimate limit on the 2nd's rights. While a ban isn't legal, regulatory and procedural requirements are.
    • Premise: Gun registration bolsters the public's perception of gun owners.
      • This element of the argument suffers from logical flaw of ambiguity. The premise not only (1) doesn't specify what be the public's perception of gun owners, but also (2) it doesn't establish that whatever be that perception, the perception itself is mostly (or more) inaccurate.
    • Sub-argument "A" ("A" is my nomenclature) used as a premise in the overall argument: New York's registration initiative allowed public access to the information in the registry. Gun registry records can be used, as occasionally were driver's license records, by ne'er do wells to select targets against whom or whose property they'd commit crimes. Additionally, non-criminals may obtain and review gun registry information to form opinions about the specific gun owners and use that information/opinion(s) in making adverse decisions with regard to a specific gun owner. Assumption --> Gun registry information must be made available to the public. Consequently, guns should not be registered because doing so abets criminals and partisans.
      • Hypothesis contrary to fact: Gun registry information need not be made public. Governments have all sorts of information about each of us, and some of that information is publicly accessible and some is not. For instance, members of the public cannot obtain another private citizen's tax returns. There's nothing stopping gun registry info from being among the non-publicly disclosed information.
    • Premise: Gun registration is a step in the sequence of events that enables and necessarily leads to (1) the confiscation of all guns such that laymen citizens will be unable to lawfully own a gun and (2) repeal of the 2nd Amendment.
      • This is a textbook slippery-slope line of argument:
        • Repeal of the 2nd in no way depends on the existence of a gun registry. That repeal can occur whether there is or is not a gun registry.
        • Absent repealing the 2nd, laws prohibiting the ownership of any gun are unenforceable.
    • The NRA's Conclusion: In light of the premises above, registration of guns should be opposed, etc.

    Thread Topic:
    The unsoundness/incogency (weakness) of the NRA's argument -- premises and conclusion -- against gun registration.
     
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  3. pjdude1219 screw watergate i want to know about zaragate Valued Senior Member

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    i would argue the first premise is untrue. will admittedly it wouldn't stop very many, it would stop a few. saying not any is the logical equivilent of saying none.
     
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  5. Xelor Registered Senior Member

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    I understand your point, but I chose to go ahead and accept the first premise because it's not worth arguing for such an argument would be based on pure jurisprudential/philosophical theorems, and I am not so optimistic as to think such a debate would go very far or be interesting in this venue. The topics to address in such a discussion, at the very least, would have to include:
    • One's/humanity's endogenous probity or depravity.
    • The abstract supressability of action in the face of motive.
    • The pragmatic and abstract role and ability of the law in motivating and discouraging behavior.
    • The nature and assessment of risk.
    You've been here long enough to know such a discussion would be overloaded with so much overly simplified pablum that it'd be an incoherent and banal conversation before it even got going.

    The other reason I chose to accept the first premise is because an argument really only needs one logical flaw to become unsound/incogent, and the noted argument has several.

    Among individuals having mens rea, the presence or absence of proscriptive or stipulative laws is of no matter. Moreover, in the case of an accident, the law is again of no matter. We thus only need laws to manage people who might, absent laws and in the face of certain opportunities and emotions, behave in depraved/unconscionable ways.
     
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  7. Quantum Quack Life's a tease... Valued Senior Member

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    I admire your attempt to lift the debate.

    I do agree with pjdude1219, however that the first premise is flawed ( and it logically is) therefore all other argument is unnecessary.
    In simplistic terms, the premise suggests an absolute outcome, an absolute outcome that is impossible. It suggest that it is a generalization using an absolute for emphasis, a way of conflating the the premise for those who may not see it as an absolute statement but indeed as perhaps, a generalization.
     
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  8. pjdude1219 screw watergate i want to know about zaragate Valued Senior Member

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    i wish i could say your wrong in that regard but well your not. i also agree with Quantum in that you should be applauded for trying to raise the level of discourse.
     
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  9. Xelor Registered Senior Member

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    Thank you both.
     
  10. Xelor Registered Senior Member

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    148
    I totally agree. I just knew that the argument as a whole has enough logical flaws that the battle on that particular premise isn't one I need to fight to make the point that the argument doesn't "hold water." No need to climb to the top of the tree when there's perfectly ripe fruit hanging at ground-level. LOL
     
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  11. Quantum Quack Life's a tease... Valued Senior Member

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    One of the key indicators of the presence of paranoia is the attempt to rationalize and justify an inexplicable fear. The NRA arguments are a manifestation of such deep seated fear. IMO.
    Attempting to rationalize the irrational is often said to be the first step towards insanity unless you consider the nature of paranoia.
    (M)
     
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  12. spidergoat Venued Serial Membership Valued Senior Member

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    Fuck the NRA.
     
  13. Dr_Toad It's green! Valued Senior Member

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    By all means. Who cares what a lobbying group does?

    Just stay off my right to keep and bear arms. Thankfully I don't need permission from anyone to live.
     
  14. billvon Valued Senior Member

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    When they break the law, the Justice Department gets pretty interested in what they do.
    Sure. You stop all the gun deaths and your right to do whatever you want with guns will be protected forever.
     
  15. iceaura Valued Senior Member

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    26,903
    They seem to have laundered Russian money into Trump's campaign in significant amounts, thereby abetting his election.

    Dollar for dollar, that may now be the main function of the NRA - getting Republicans elected to office, for the benefit of Russian and corporate American interests. The gun stuff seems to have become a means to that larger end.
     
  16. Dr_Toad It's green! Valued Senior Member

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    Stop all the stupid rhetoric, and your right to nonsense will be protected as well.

    Why would I wish to stop all stupid people from spewing rhetoric? "All gun deaths" is a pretty tall order, and removing guns will not stop murder or suicide by other means. Good lord, man.
     
  17. Xelor Registered Senior Member

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    148
    Okay, folks. Let's get back onto the actual thread topic:

    Thread Topic:

    The unsoundness/incogency (weakness) of the NRA's argument -- premises and conclusion -- against gun registration.
    By all means, remark upon the NRA's argument against registration, but "leave at the door" the rest of what might come to your mind.
     
  18. Dr_Toad It's green! Valued Senior Member

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    Sir Robin, the Internet janitor, redux?

    Anyhow, your thread. Mangle it as you wish.
     
  19. iceaura Valued Senior Member

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    The NRA's "argument" against gun registration is not logical deduction in the first place. It's simply a question: do you trust your government with that information in perpetuity? The answer is going to be "no", for many people, and that is not something one can argue away.
     
  20. Xelor Registered Senior Member

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    148
    Well, truly one cannot argue irrationality out of another's mind.
     

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