Firearms and Freedom

Discussion in 'Ethics, Morality, & Justice' started by Tiassa, Feb 24, 2016.

  1. Dr_Toad It's green! Valued Senior Member

    It seems to me that that was a fault in applying the law, per the "reasonable person" test. It has nothing to do with our right to bear arms if we are not dangerous due to mental instability.

    Did you miss that part of your own exposition?
    Truck Captain Stumpy likes this.
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  3. Crcata Registered Senior Member

    This guns rights movement is a breeding ground for so much hatred lol. The mere mention of it boils some peoples blood, and there are almost no reasonable or rational debates to be had with guns rights activists or even the other side due to such strong emotions often tied to their opinions.

    I understand the arguments for both sides and really don't have a strong opinion either way.

    I understand the desire to have the ability to defend yourself against the "bad guys" who will undoubtedly have guns in many cases. And the idea of "better to have it and not need it than need it and not have it" is not a bad one, specifically because the police cant be everywhere at once.

    I also get that there will be many situations that shootings have occurred and will occur due to guns being available, when otherwise perhaps only a fist fight or even an argument would have happened.

    As with most things involving law and order, we have to understand there is a balance between protection and liberty in most (if not all) issues. The more protection you have the less liberty, and vice versa. To me when deciding which side of the issue you are on the question should generally be something along the lines of, "Do I want strict gun control and overall less shootings and likely overall safer streets, but with no protection for myself if I find myself in a bad situation? Or d0 I want loose gun control and the ability to defend myself if need be but the unfortunate reality there will be more shootings and death in totality?". I'm not aware of the exact statistics (although I would love to see them) but that seems to be the trade off from my understanding. Also, fun fact, in Texas surprisingly there isn't a lot of people actually open carrying. I live here and haven't even seen one in person (granted I'm not out with the intention of finding one). Everyone I know would rather conceal it than become a target.

    Also another argument I keep seeing which is such a ridiculous one in my opinion, is the argument that we may need our guns to defend ourselves against our "militarized police", because they couldn't possibly be militarized for any other reason than to oppress the people right? It couldn't possibly be because the threats police face today are much worse and much more frequent than they used to be could it? It couldn't actually be for our benefit and protection that they carry shotguns and rifles, since often times crazy assholes attack them or civilians with those same weapons? Or have armored vehicles to protect themselves? These kinds of attitudes seem to be a growing stigma of what I deem "rebels without a cause" just waiting for the next government agency to fuck up so they can scream "revolution!".

    Speaking of which...I think I just found another topic I need to make a thread of. Incoming!
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  5. iceaura Valued Senior Member

    You don't need any of that to buy a car.

    As far as driving a car - the rules on firing guns are in many ways more, not less, restrictive. In many places it is illegal for the owner of a gun to discharge it except in self defense even on his own property.

    Meanwhile, proposing that gun ownership be restricted on the same principles as car usage is restricted is a threat to many Americans, given the manner in which car usage has in fact been restricted by State agencies in the US. It's not a good line of argument.
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  7. Bells Staff Member

    Reasonable person test? What? Are you suggesting that it is not foreseeable that a violent murderer could murder again, especially with a history of mental illness? The fault is not in the application of the laws. The fault lies with the laws themselves.

    I mean, am I the only person who thinks that is twisted in the worst way? The absolute hypocrisy of the organisation for the regulations they have for a costume, that they refuse to consider for the ability to purchase a firearm...

    I'll ask the question simply.. Do you think it is acceptable for convicted murderers and rapists to be able to obtain their firearms again? Yes or no?

    I'll post this again:

    Since 1995, more than 3,300 felons and people convicted of domestic violence misdemeanors have regained their gun rights in the state — 430 in 2010 alone — according to the analysis of data provided by the state police and the court system. Of that number, more than 400 — about 13 percent — have subsequently committed new crimes, the analysis found. More than 200 committed felonies, including murder, assault in the first and second degree, child rape and drive-by shooting.

    Do you support such measures? The NRA has petitioned for this and they are winning. Some States are closing loopholes that would make it harder for convicted criminals to obtain their firearms, because heaven forbid a convicted felon has a hard time getting a gun legally..

    But let's look at the failure of applying the "reasonable person" test. Gun rights groups have been fighting to ensure that the decision process is short and that ultimately, that criminals can get their guns back. There are no tests involved, no psych evaluations. Nothing of the sort. Violent criminals applying to court are finding it increasingly easy to regain their rights to own their guns. In some cases, those rights become automatic. Even for convicted murderers. Instead of tightening laws that would prevent convicted murderers from being able to access their firearms again, the gun rights groups lobbied, successfully, to allow them to obtain their gun rights again.

    In 2001, three police officers in the Columbia Heights suburb of Minneapolis were shot and wounded by a convicted murderer whose firearms rights had been restored automatically in 1987, 10 years after he completed a six-and-a-half year prison sentence and then probation for killing his estranged wife and a family friend with a shotgun. (The State Legislature had imposed the 10-year waiting period for violent felons after it discovered what Senator Durenberger had feared: that felons’ gun rights would be restored immediately under the Firearm Owners Protection Act.)

    What happened in the wake of the shooting is emblematic of how the issue has played out in many states, particularly where the gun lobby is powerful.

    Two Democratic legislators sought to impose a lifetime firearms ban on violent felons, although they concluded that for their bills to have any chance of passing, they would also have to set up a process that held out a hope of eventual restoration. They were unable, however, to get their bills through the Legislature.

    The issue was taken up the following year by Republican lawmakers, but it became wrapped up in legislation to relax concealed-weapons laws. Initially, a moderate Republican introduced a bill with a 5- to 10-year waiting period for regaining gun rights, but the waiting period was scrapped entirely in the law, written by gun-rights advocates, that was finally enacted in 2003. That law, which does not even mandate that prosecutors be notified of the hearings, requires judges to grant the requests merely if the petitioners show “good cause.”

    “The decision was, we have good judges and we trust them,” said Joseph Olson, who helped write the statute as president of the advocacy group Concealed Carry Reform Now.

    One man who has benefited from a Minnesota judge’s gun rights ruling is William Holisky.

    Mr. Holisky, an accountant who has struggled with bipolar disorder and alcoholism, had gone out only a few times with Karen Roman, a nurse he had met online, before she broke up with him.

    In August 2006, Ms. Roman was getting ready to work a night shift, putting on makeup in the bathroom of her home in Duluth, when she heard a truck pulling up and a loud boom. Moments later, she heard another boom and glass breaking. She hit the floor, calling out to her teenage son in the other room to do the same as she crawled to the phone to dial 911.

    The police arrested Mr. Holisky later that night for drunken driving. Several months later, they charged him in the shooting as well. He pleaded guilty to second-degree assault with a dangerous weapon.

    Around the same time, he also pleaded guilty to a felony charge of making terroristic threats against an elderly neighbor. The woman had reported to the police that someone — she suspected Mr. Holisky — had left her a threatening and obscene note. She had also reported a series of escalating incidents that included harassing telephone calls, his entering her apartment and someone’s smashing her bedroom window. Mr. Holisky also had a misdemeanor burglary conviction from 2003, for breaking into an ex-girlfriend’s house, as well as another misdemeanor conviction for violating an order of protection.

    In Mr. Holisky’s gun rights hearing in October 2010 in Two Harbors, a small town on the north shore of Lake Superior, Russell Conrow, the prosecutor in Lake County, argued that Mr. Holisky had not yet proved that he could stay clean, given that he had just gotten out of prison. Mr. Conrow also pointed out that there were two active orders of protection against Mr. Holisky.

    “There were people still scared of him,” Mr. Conrow said recently.

    For his part, Mr. Holisky took documents from the plea agreement in his assault case, in which the prosecutor in neighboring St. Louis County agreed not to oppose the restoration of his firearms rights.

    Mr. Holisky, who is 59, did not specify in his often-rambling petition exactly why he wanted a gun. He described his behavior in 2006 as an “aberration.”

    The county judge, Kenneth Sandvik, was set to retire in a few months. He knew Mr. Holisky’s family from growing up in the community. Several weeks later, he ruled that Mr. Holisky had met the basic requirements of the law.

    In an interview, Judge Sandvik said he had given considerable weight to the St. Louis County prosecutor’s agreement not to oppose the restoration of gun rights for Mr. Holisky. But Gary Bjorklund, an assistant St. Louis County attorney, said in an interview that he had been focused on extracting a guilty plea that would send Mr. Holisky to prison and had thought no judge would take a firearms request from Mr. Holisky seriously.

    Judge Sandvik acknowledged that he had not looked into the details of Mr. Holisky’s assault case, arguing that his job had been only to review what the prosecutor had presented to him.

    “We’re not investigators,” he said.

    The ease with which Mr. Holisky regained his gun rights does not appear to be an anomaly. Using partial data from Minnesota’s Judicial Branch, The Times identified more than 70 cases since 2004 of people convicted of “crimes of violence” who have gotten their gun rights back. A closer look at a number of them found a superficial process. The cases included those of Mr. Krueger, who criticized the system as insufficiently rigorous after winning back his gun rights in a perfunctory hearing, and of another man whose petition was approved without even a hearing, even though his felony involved pulling a gun on a man.

    The ruling in Mr. Holisky’s case prompted members of his family to write a series of frantic e-mails to Judge Sandvik and Mr. Conrow, warning of dire consequences.

    It is not entirely clear whether Mr. Holisky, who did not respond to several requests for comment, is legally able to buy a gun at this point, because at least one of the outstanding orders of protection, which expires next year, appears to trip another federal prohibition. But Mr. Holisky has been writing letters to relatives in Texas, threatening legal action if they do not turn over his gun collection.

    So far, they have refused.

    As I said, what a shame the same rules the NRA has for their costumes, are not applied to the ability to purchase firearms. That would be expecting too much. You know, common sense.
  8. Bells Staff Member

    If you commit a crime, you can still own guns, you just cannot possess them without a court ruling or in instances where no court ruling is necessary, if you have served your sentence, your rights to a gun can be restored automatically. You can leave your guns with a friend or family member. In short, Henderson vs United States (2015) found that a convicted felon can transfer possession of their firearms to a third party and the police cannot confiscate said weapons if the convicted felon elects a third party..

    If you commit a crime with your car, your car can be confiscated. In fact, they can confiscate anything that may be connected to a crime you or someone to you has committed. But not your guns.

    Again.. Irony..
  9. Tiassa Let us not launch the boat ... Staff Member

    To Kill, Threaten, and Menace: Reasonable People and the Only Freedoms That Matter

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    Bells, these are gun rights advocates. Consider this thread about the proposition that the Second Amendment protects all other Amendments. When presented with a situation in which gun ownership actually threatens freedom, they simply can't deal with it. As such, what you're noting is the only "freedom" they care about: The freedom to threaten and intimidate and kill.

    To them the "reasonable person" wants stalkers armed; when I hear of those cases, I raise a glass to Iceaura. Dr Toad thinks the "reasonable person" wants violent criminals with apparent mental health problems carrying guns. Truck Diver Stumpy thinks the reasonable person sees no difference between a gun and a scalpel.

    I would ask you to cast your memory back a while; among the factors that have for years blunted my expressions of disdain for Christianity are specific focus on American politics and, well, you know I've certain disputes with how atheists represent themselves in the public discourse. But if you reach back in the archives, you can find some pretty hard criticisms coming off my pen.

    And that recollection is important as a framework, because in that context I can show you a delusional person who can actually tell the difference between a gun and a scalpel:

    Violence can be defined as the evil infliction of suffering. Some instances of causing pain―for example, the surgeon's knife―cannot be classified as violent because the intent is to heal, not to cause suffering. The conscious and deliberate inflicting of suffering is the heart of violence and moral evil.

    (Russell, 20-21)

    Dr. Russell is a fine scholar, one of the best historians we might read. But the professor emeritus also believes in this invisible person who runs everything in the Universe, and talks to this person regularly. And his belief that this invisible, all-powerful person exists is so persuasive that he disdains aspects of his own career. Having written a five-volume set on the history of evil and the Devil that leaves his fellows and students giddy, he would prefer that his renown as an historian should instead be for asserting to document an anti-Christian flat-earth conspiracy theory, and his efforts to describe the reality of Heaven. His latest book dismisses criticisms of Christian philosophy as "viral lies and legends".

    But, yes, even he can tell the difference 'twixt a gun and a scalpel.

    I'm pretty sure he can also tell the difference between a firearm and a salad fork.

    Truck Captain Stumpy and the murder lobby's "reasonable" people, though? It's a little less certain.

    The basic assertion seems to be that "reasonable" people want dangerous individuals armed to the teeth because hospitals and water and salad forks―oh, my! Notice that when an issue arises challenging the proposition of the Second Amendment protecting liberty, this is what they would rather talk about.

    And that's the thing; the NRA is an industry lobby. If society is reduced to such a state that people are buying guns because they have no recourse left, then the NRA and people like Iceaura, Dr Toad, and Truck Captain Stumpy have done their jobs successfully.

    Oscar Wilde, asserting socialism, argues that the proper aim is to construct a society such that poverty is impossible.

    The NRA, asserting freedom and safety, would construct a society such that peace is impossible.

    At some point, we have not simply liberty, but, rather, basic human obligation to question these people's standard of what is "reasonable".


    Russell, Jeffrey Burton. Lucifer: The Devil in the Middle Ages. Ithaca: Cornell University Press, 1984.
  10. pjdude1219 The biscuit has risen Valued Senior Member

    so your whining that a deadly weapon is treated like a deadly weapon instead of the toy you seem to think it is?
  11. iceaura Valued Senior Member

    That's not true: Your guns can be confiscated (and will be, in my State anyway) if you use them to commit a crime, or even have them in the vicinity. It happens all the time.

    Again: the entire car business is a bad approach. It's a threat. In the US, the vulnerability of people to State coercion via the practical necessity of driving coupled with its status as a "privilege" has been much abused by the State.

    Lots of people who would otherwise be in favor of various gun restrictions will balk at the idea of giving the State new leverage of that kind.

    To repeat: it's a "both sides" problem; the only major political issue I know of actually held hostage by irrational ravings on "both sides", extremists threatening the bulk of the citizenry from "both sides".

    That kind of dishonest slander, bad faith argument, and slimeball rhetoric is why you and your kind are having so much trouble getting what seem to you - and me, and almost everyone else, as you would know if you paid attention - like perfectly sensible gun control regulations, made into law. You guys can't even spare the people on your side, backing your agenda, your spittle. Do you even know how crazy that sounds?

    People are not going vote somebody who thinks and talks like that into political power over them. In my area over the years I've seen a half a dozen political candidates lose on that factor - more than on abortion, more than on "taxes". And if Clinton loses in the general, my guess is that will be a significant factor in her case as well - which you can blame on the face in the mirror.
    Dr_Toad likes this.
  12. Bells Staff Member

    You haven't read the case, have you?

    Or the articles linked in this thread? Convicted murderers surrender their guns to family and/or friends and when they come out of prison and their gun rights are reinstated, they are getting their guns back and often using those very weapons to commit more crimes.

    Henderson vs United States, protects the rights of a criminal when it comes to their guns and protects them from having their guns confiscated. Time to brush up.. I am sure your State is different to everyone else's. I know, you can only go by what you know with your local militia group that you keep reminding us you can call on at any time.. But the reality is vastly different to what you think you know.

    Yes, because a car is like a gun..

    What is it with gun activists trying to change the subject each time this discussion comes up?

    Instead of focusing on the fact that the NRA makes it harder to get a costume than it is to get a gun, this is what you can come up with? I mean, you cannot even feign disgust that gun rights activists are pushing to rearm convicted murderers and rapists?

    How do you "lots of people" would feel if they knew that the NRA has restrictions for accessing their mascot's costumes, but refuse to support even minor restrictions to access guns? Or how do you think those "lots of people" would feel if they knew that the NRA and gun rights lobby groups were lobbying to rearm violent offenders and convicted killers?

    Once again, the irony of this whole situation escapes you completely. Reasonable gun restrictions, like a waiting period, background checks, requiring that they be kept in a locked place, away from children or even potential criminals, having to report loss of guns to the police..? Oh no. But for a costume? Yes.

    It is, to put it bluntly, batshit crazy.

    And you are on one side complaining about cars, in response to a gun lobby making it harder to access a costume than a gun..

    You keep making this complaint, when your argument stems from the crazy right side of 'must have guns'. Surely the irony of your stance here has not escaped you?

    What kind is that? The "kind" who find the level of gun violence to be abhorrent? The "kind" who find the absolute hateful rhetoric that supports the rights to have even more guns, leading to more gun violence to be abhorrent? The "kind" who question how and why people still defend gun rights, even when it comes to violent criminals, because the alternative would be even 'reasonable gun regulations'?

    You say that you would want sensible gun regulations, but you pitch a fit if anyone even suggests what are sensible gun control regulations.

    Look at your argument right now. Instead of even agreeing that rearming violent offenders is a bad idea, you start arguing that cars kill people. And you think your stance here is reasonable? Do you have any idea of just how crazy you sound?

    Do you have any idea of how crazy and dangerous you sound when you argue that people have a right to put the lives of others at risk because 'guns'? You are the extremist that you keep complaining about.

    I have to question, what is your role in this thread and all the other threads we have had when it comes to gun control? Why is it that you always enter these discussions, with your spittle spraying from your mouth, if anyone dares even suggest 'gun control'? And then you claim that sensible gun control is impossible because of extremists on both sides in a repetitive whine, but you yourself are not open to any form of gun control.. And as you have just demonstrated, you aren't even open to the mere suggestion that violent convicted criminals not be allowed to regain access to their firearms.. Your position is laughable. And dangerous.

    You mean like proponents of sensible gun control measures lost in the past? Like Obama, for example?

    Thank you for telling us that where you live is full of people who are proverbial psychopaths, who believe that others do not have the right to not have their lives put at risk or threatened, even if it means violent offenders legally rearming themselves, because GUNS!!! Not to mention pure paranoia about the Government.. You are a prime example of the apple not falling far from the tree.

    But please, talk about cars some more. Because that doesn't make you look or sound crazy at all....
    pjdude1219 likes this.
  13. Tiassa Let us not launch the boat ... Staff Member


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    Survey says:

    The people advocating gun regulation are foul little gits with an authoritarian agenda―is that really the point you want to make? Well, you wouldn't be alone―it's been made, inadvertently to be sure, over and over, on TV and in the newspaper and right here, as we hear them tell us about the nature of those who do not agree that guns are useless and therefore should be removed from private hands by whatever means necessary and on whatever justification is available.

    One reason the eminently sensible laws mentioned are opposed by so many, not just the NRA, is that they don't trust the source. Amy Klobuchar is not a terrible Senator, but if not watched she will make bicycle helmets mandatory, canoeing without actually wearing a lifejacket illegal, fireworks available only to licensed professionals, that kind of thing. The term "Nanny State" might have been coined for her utopia. And that poisons the well.


    You know, you might say you were having a bad day when you made a stand for stalkers. I remember once Madanthonywayne, when I asked him why he had slipped into a particularly vicious posting cycle, pointed out that it was election season, which seemed reasonable enough, but he never really did come back to reality. You could always try that. As a matter of fact, it seems you could have tried just about anything but what you went with, because the problem with your expresssion on this occasion↑ is the historical record.

    You argued in defense of keeping stalkers and domestic abusers armed. Pointing that out is neither slander nor bad faith. Indeed, bad faith can be found in your attempt to evade history.

    You pitched a hell of a tantrum. How you deal with it is up to you, but the one thing you don't get to do is pretend that tizzy never happened.
  14. iceaura Valued Senior Member

    Utter nonsense. I made no such arguments regarding cars, and never disagreed that rearming violent criminals is a bad idea. I said nothing even slightly resembling either of those two assertions. Where are you getting this garbage?

    I am informed by you of how crazy I sound to you. But you seem to be deranged in your reading of my posts. You have me saying all kinds of bizarre stuff, some of it the direct opposite of my actual posting. I can't prevent your hallucinations from sounding crazy to you.
    I didn't "argue", I observed. In the US, that is a simple, plain, written down, legally bulletproof, fact. When you tell people in the US that even simply acknowledging their possession of Constitutional rights is crazy and dangerous, you lose their political support.
    Not the guns involved in a crime.
    I hate to break it to you, but you guys are not a repository of good faith and common sense and reason in this matter, and your claim to be the moral good guys in possession of all the opposition to "stalkers" is invalidated by that very sentence - if it had any plausibility left.
    Symptomatic. Illustrative.

    That's your posting on this issue - that's your argument. And the fact that you and that entire faction cannot post on this topic without such bullshit is exactly my point.
    Wishful thinking.

    No, I didn't. You did, Bells did, I didn't. Nowhere near. Read what you quoted, even out of context - it was sober, accurate, and made a perfectly reasonable point you have yet to address. You can call it names all you want to, but it's not going to go away until you address it.

    And that kind of accusation is nothing if not illustrative. You guys have a screw loose, and nobody is going to trust you until you recover your sense. And that (in my opinion) is what has killed gun control in the US. Too many people mistrust the advocates, with reason.

    Very obvious reason.
    Last edited: Apr 27, 2016
  15. Randwolf Ignorance killed the cat Valued Senior Member

    Maybe we have been too hasty with you Ice.

    Indulge me here... In a hypothetical "blank slate" US of A, second amendment concerns notwithstanding, what sort of reasonable and responsible gun ownership rules and restrictions would you support?

    If you had a magic wand, would you advocate licensing the operation of firearms by private citizens? To the one, it seems you allude to favoring some type of restrictions, yet to the other you claim nothing can be done because of the constitution.

    So, I'm asking, - point blank - in a hypothetical universe, do you think it is a good idea to have any sort of laws limiting or restricting ownership or use of guns? If so, what is reasonable - in your opinion?

    An affirmative answer would be really nice at this point...
  16. pjdude1219 The biscuit has risen Valued Senior Member

    save it your dealing with a person who thinks shooting a mugger in the back as their running away is not extreme and normal, counter mugging some is not extreme and normal, threatening to shoot someone who disagrees with the pro gun agenda is normal and not extreme. to put it bluntly your dealing with an extremist who has consistently shown a casual disregard for truth, facts, and honesty on the topic. Ice bullshit argument is we could have common sense gun control if only the mean anti gun "extremists" ,who you think maybe something should be done about a rampant gun violence problem,wouldn't scare the poor persecuted gun owners so we have to cater to there delicate sensibilities because there want a weapon trumps everyone else right not to be killed as far as ice is concerned.
  17. pjdude1219 The biscuit has risen Valued Senior Member

    no ice paranoid delusional people who advocate and protect violence is what has stopped gun control. I have long since grown tired with your personal attacks and lies on this topic. you've shown zero intellectual honesty and have no morals at all. at the end of the day you happy helping terrorists kill people rather than have any common sense gun control measures. you are the perfect example of why some pro gun people advocate extreme measures, though despite your constant fucking lies about they are almost nonexistent, the childish hissy fit that when dealing with a weapon we think maybe we should require some semblance of responsibility and accountability something you have sown your self time and time again to be against. so spare us your rants we all understand the childish mentality behind them. you talk about both sides as if your some sort of rational middle ground but you lack so little self awareness and are so delusional that you can't see your one of the extremists. for fucks sake you freely admitted to being willing to crime with your gun if memory serves me correctly. and you some how think you have the right to lecture anybody on this topic. hell when the death threat by one of your buddy "responsible" irresponsible gun nuts here threaten me you didn't say a god damn thing because in your mind thats an acceptable thing to do in the gun debate threaten to kill the people who disagree with you. your sitting here making excuses for terrorists and criminals and you think have some sort of moral high ground?
  18. Xelasnave.1947 Valued Senior Member

    I also would ask a similar question. In fact I ask the same question.

  19. iceaura Valued Senior Member

    An "affirmative" answer? Would that be one that pretends that is in any way an honest question?

    Or should I answer directly, affirmatively recognizing the reappearance of the standard Fox question format for what is actually an accusation the poster could not defend if explicit;

    provide an answer that affirmatively recognizes the rhetorical tactic, recognizes that the tone and content of all my posts treats such laws favorably and as desirable things, so that the honest presumptive question would be whether there are any such laws I actually oppose;

    provide an answer that affirmatively reminds people with hundreds or even thousands of posts here, some in other threads on this general topic, that I have posted dozens of such lists and descriptions long and short and focused and general and specific to various topics and so forth, that I have been pointedly disparaging the current state of affairs while advocating for and describing favorably specific gun control and gun owner restrictions and so forth for years here, in many threads including this one (#131, say, among others);

    that - just to highlight the nature of this "question" - I suspect, if added up, the number and volume of suggested laws and policies specific and general, descriptions of laws and policies, and defenses of laws and policies, restricting ownership and use of guns in the US, that I have posted, is greater than anyone else's on this forum.

    To my knowledge, for example, I'm the only poster here who has ventured specific features of responsible gun ownership, already broadly agreed with, that could be enacted into law tomorrow with the likelihood of at least some benefit. In other words, specific contributions to what so many have mentioned is centrally missing: a legal framework for the concept of the responsible gun owner. Accountability, to the community, for the exercise of a right. Offered - favorably and recommended - for discussion. Sunk without trace.

    Meanwhile, one of them - universal background checks at point of sale - is currently deadlocked in my State legislature. Why? Because it is reflexively and solidly opposed by a bipartisan coalition of rural and "outstate" legislators. Why? Not because they oppose, in principle, universal background checks. They don't. They favor them. What they say is this: the way it is being set up, and the way it is being advocated and praised, it is a slipshod background check but a rigorously effective central gun registration - a data base of who owns which guns, down to serial number matched with Social Security number. It's set up to creep, without increased benefit. And they don't trust the motives behind that. Now read back in this thread, and notice what they have noticed - the visible motives, the attitudes, that actually are behind that.

    They aren't wrong, are they. About the motives, the agenda, that is. One can argue they should pass the law anyway, despite the nature of the political forces behind it - but it's a difficult argument to make. One might argue that they should write their own law, then, with a better agenda behind it and less disturbingly framed up - but that brings them into conflict with their own crazies, in uncertain political times. So it sits.

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