Thursday, 19 June 2014

A response to good questions/ statements with regard to guns and gun ownership and regulations.

My nephew Bryan responded to a Facebook post I made that linked an article talking about the reality of "good guys with guns"

I started to just respond in the face book post but this warrants more attention then a quick face book response.  Hats off to him for actually voicing his views.  How much he or anyone else will accept the logic and reasoning why the arguments fail is not controllable by me.  All I can do is state the reality and point out the flaws.  So with that I hope this makes you think a bit about the issue.

Here is his post and what follows is my response.

BrYan May I don't care what the numbers are, I would want to at least have the opportunity to defend myself against an intruder. Otherwise I'd just be a dude asking the gunman to get out of my house.
It's our second amendment right to keep and bear arms. If there ever was a need for a militia, we as people, would need to be equipped. With the way this government has turned, it's important to be able to protect yourself. This is a tyrannical government that's infringing on a lot of the freedoms our forefathers fought for against England. This is a police state where regular cops have military weapons and vehicles. And laws granting them the ability to go in your house and search without a warrant. Reminds me of the Revolutionary war days when red coats could use houses for whatever they wanted.
There's a lot of fed up people here. If there was ever a rebellion, we need to be armed. To protect ourselves from any enemy.
I just looked up deaths by motor vehicles and guns ans in 2010 the numbers were about even. Should we have stricter regulations on motor vehicles too?

Ok Bryan let me address your points one at a time.
1) "I don't care what the numbers are..." I can stop right there.  Your family is safer without a gun in the house period.  Even with a home invasion risk you, your wife and your children are over 4 times more likely to get shot because you have a gun in your home.  If you goal is to protect your family from harm then the best thing for you to do is not have a gun.  In a home invasion situation the best thing for any family to do is call the police immediately and barricade you and your family in one of the rooms and remain on the phone with the police.  I know it doesn't sound manly to hide in a room but it is the safest thing for your family and I personally don't have to risk my family's safety because I want to look more macho. Arguing that you are safer with a gun is as sensible as saying you are safer not wearing a seat belt in your car.  I don't care how safe you feel.  Reality doesn't care how safe you feel.  Reality says you or one of your family members is more likely to get shot and possibly killed if you have a gun.

2)Next the Second Amendment says "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."

First 4 words "a well regulated Militia.  This would equate to something like a national guard.  Yes back over 220 years ago well regulated state militias where a credible threat against the Federal government that was still unsure if the laws put in place would be sufficient to control the federal government.  The reality is the laws, if we choose to use them, are very sufficient to control the federal government.  The problem is that most people don't want to bother.  It is far easier for people to complain about the government over reach and corruption and do nothing about it and pretend that if you have a gun that you'll be able to stop the new world order when it comes.  The reality is quite different.  Our forefathers put in place all the tools we need if we just choose to use them.  Lets us take the single largest problem with our government with respect to governing over its citizens.  At all levels government is becoming more and more corrupt.  Big money in politics is the largest factor for this.  Both the democrats and GOP are controlled by big money.  We don't have a right and left wing politicians.  We have right wing and centre right wing politicians because corporations and the ultra rich are primarily right wing.  Over 90% of people in the USA believe that money corrupts politics but congress isn't going to change it, the executive branch doesn't come through with the change that they promised and the judicial branch has been stacked over the last few decades with to many judges that consider corporations and the rich more important then you and I.  With the latest ruling by SCOTUS we get statements like
"Associate Justice Anthony McLeod Kennedy - We now conclude that independent expenditures, including those made by corporations, do not give rise to corruption or the appearance of corruption."
And they expect us to believe that because we let them by our inaction.  Not because we aren't willing to take up arms but that to many people aren't willing to voice their opinion.  We all know that almost all politicians are going to listen to a billionaire throwing them and their party millions of dollars a lot more then you and I who wouldn't even appear on their radar even if we donate to their campaigns.  There are studies that show that, with regard to legislation, the common citizens views do not factor into actual legislative results but if you are in the top .01% the legislation almost always aligns with your positions on a topic.
So given that you aren't going to, and shouldn't, form an armed revolt against the federal government what can you do?  Well the forefathers where very smart individuals.  Article 5 mandates that the states can force the federal government to amend the constitution even if the politicians in Washington don't want to.  There is a big push to have the states force the Federal government to amend the constitution and over turn rulings like Citizens United, which might sound like it is good for you but basically says a corporation is a person just like you ....except better.  They get all the rights you do but can have limited liability, can't be drafted, can't be sent to jail, can spend more money supporting political candidates then you can which means they can legally buy your politicians.  To see how you can help without the use of a gun go to

Now back to guns.  What do you think would happen if the federal government came for you.  I mean really wanted to come for you.  To many people look up to people like Cliven Bundy as standing up to the Federal government and think, "see we've got guns and the government is afraid of us".  They are stupid.  First Cliven Bundy steals from all Americans.  Other ranchers pay grazing fees that Bundy believes he doesn't have to.  He uses federal lands to feed his cattle and doesn't think the law should apply to him.  It is no different then someone thinking they don't have to pay any taxes but still have the government protect them with police and fire departments. Use federal and local roads. Use national parks we pay to maintain with our money.  Use the schools to educate their kids.  For fuck sake it is like someone driving into a national park, cutting down all the trees to hall off to a lumber yard and pocket all the money.  But people flock to Bundy with their AR15s in hopes that they'll be able to use their weapons against the government.

If the government wanted to take them out how hard do you think it would be.  Forget the legality but just pure combat.  I can tell you that everyone at the Cliven Bundy ranch would be dead and I'd be surprised if even 1 military member was even harmed during the assault.  The reason the government just doesn't go in is not because they are scared of the civilians with guns and what they could do to an assaulting force but what a few dozen stupid idiots with AR15s would be willing to try to do to protect a racist thief.  Having a gun doesn't help them any more then them all having kitchen knives and threatening to drink poisoned kool-aid if the feds get to close.

If you try to use a gun to stop a police officer from legally searching your residence then you are stupid.  If police officers illegally search your residence then take legal action against them.  When you see cops racially profiling black kids, speak up there.  Don't interfere but tape it.  Post it.  File a complaint with the police.  Take it to your politicians that you won't stand for them overstepping their authority.  Boston is no stranger to putting police back in their place.  On October 21, 2004 Victoria Snelgrove, a 22 year old journalism student was killed by a police officer after the Red Socks won against the Yankees because the police were using crowd control tactics that the situation did not warrant and the police officer wasn't trained for and should not have been authorized to use.  Did enough happen to all the police officers involved, not in my opinion but actual action was taken and police officers did get punished and demoted.  When cops over step their authority you and every other citizen need to be involved in correcting the issue.  If no one steps up and makes a fuss then the country will slide deeper into a police state.  This means that you have to stand up for your rights even if it means you might get pepper sprayed or arrested some times.  Having a gun won't help you one bit and if you pull it out on a cop then expect that your wife and child will live on without you.

Finally your argument about motor vehicles. We do have stricter regulations on motor vehicles.  You register your motor vehicles.  Your motor vehicles are insured and inspected.  You hold a licence to drive your motor vehicle and can loose the right to drive said motor vehicle. There are sensible road rules.  Speed limited, laws against drunk driving.  Your motor vehicle primary function isn't to kill or maim another person.  Yes accidents happen with vehicles and they get investigated.  But with guns and gun ownership we don't have the same type of regulations.  Vehicles are also used a HELL of a lot more then guns.  If vehicles where used only as much as guns and still had the same death rates  The average American driver spends about an hour a day in the car. Tell me how many people do you know that use their guns more then they drive? It is also a logical fallacy to say that since cars cause deaths that guns shouldn't be regulated even if the risk in using them was the same which it is not.  It is a lot harder to function in modern society without a car then it is without a gun.  We accept the risks with vehicles and we are constantly making driving safer.  We do no such thing with regards to guns.

Now I've not even said anything about taking away all guns.  If you want to have a hand gun in your home and accept the increased risk to you and your family that is your decision just don't delude yourself.  What I say is better laws and regulations should be in place.  This means standards across all 50 states just like there are standards to drivers across all 50 states.  Just like there are safety standards in all states with the road worthiness of your vehicles in all 50 states.  You can't just go buy a car in Rhode Island because they allow you to drive unroad worthy vehicles there.  I've said it before and I'll say it again if we had similar laws and regulations with regard to guns that we do with vehicles there would be less deaths.  There is a reason why American children are 9 times more likely to be killed by a gun then in an other developed country and it isn't because of "bad guys with guns" most of the time.  To often it is because stupid parents with guns don't know how to secure their firearms properly.

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