Can we have a rational discussion about guns and why the typical arguments for gun control and its implementation won't work?

highfigh

highfigh

Audioholic Slumlord
I don't want this to become a 'Democrat vs Republican' thing, I would like to see reasoned comments and responses without turning to insults.

I have mentioned that Milwaukee is an example of a badly-run city but even if the city leaders have the best of intentions behind them, some people don't care and will do what they want, when they want and they don't care if it's illegal.

This happened late Sunday evening and it's the kind of event that can occur when people who shouldn't have access to guns, do. If you listen, it sounds like automatic gunfire at times and those weapons are already heavily regulated/taxed and access is much more difficult than most other guns.


My thoughts on what will help to decrease needless gun deaths-

- More/better care for people with mental illness
- The courts need to prevent access to guns and remove guns from people who have made threats (see the link about the casino shootings at the bottom)
- The Courts need to grow a set and hold people with violent past when they're arrested for violent crimes
-People need to accept the fact that they know someone with mental illness and that care is needed- lose the stigma
- People who are afraid of guns need to realize that guns do nothing on their own and while the fear may be justified, these people shouldn't be in a position to make policy regarding them but could/should be part of the overall discussion.
-People need to stop getting attention when spewing information that's not accurate and they need to be corrected when they get that attention because it mis-informs others, often leading to a frenzied response.


None of this needs to happen- people have to stop resorting to violence as one of their first reactions to anger.
 
Mikado463

Mikado463

Audioholic Samurai
Sadly my closest city, Philly, is just as bad. So much of the gun violence is with young people that unfortunately have had an upbringing without a sound family unit. No one single simple answer .........

Start with 'really' getting tough on crimes committed with guns, tougher background checks and be held accountable to them, straw purchase deals need to strictly enforced and the list goes on ......
 
highfigh

highfigh

Audioholic Slumlord
Sadly my closest city, Philly, is just as bad. So much of the gun violence is with young people that unfortunately have had an upbringing without a sound family unit. No one single simple answer .........

Start with 'really' getting tough on crimes committed with guns, tougher background checks and be held accountable to them, straw purchase deals need to strictly enforced and the list goes on ......
I watched some videos where Denzel Washington was asked about his thoughts on some of the current problems and he said "It starts in the home- take care of your own house. They don't lock up seven year-olds, but at 13, my friends and I were doing things that could have gotten us in real trouble. Where are their parents? Where are their grandparents?". He went on to say that he was the only one of the three in his group who had a father in his life and that his parents steered him in a different direction- one friend did about 23 years in prison while the other did more than 25 years. He has spoken at several graduation events and some of the things he said really make sense- I'm paraphrasing, but it was basically "Make goals. Make goals for the distant future, for the not so distant future, for tomorrow and for today". He also told one group of grads "If you fall, and you will, get up. If you fall seven times, get up eight times".

I think the cities that are having the worst problems did a terrible job of preventing this. I know Milwaukee and far less about the others but here, the local government has done everything in its power to keep minorities in small areas of the city, as if that will make the city look good. Well, that has failed miserably, from a public perspective point and from actually seeing its condition. I seriously doubt the mayor sees more than the areas between his house and City Hall and that's only if he chooses to look. I have seen and heard nothing from him about the condition WRT roads, trash strewn around and piling up along fences, the homeless who stand at street corners with signs asking for money and stating that they're homeless, but I have heard him ask about where felons get their guns and that shows a serious lack of knowledge.
 
j_garcia

j_garcia

Audioholic Jedi
I am all for firearms. I am also for better controls, not MORE controls, BETTER ones. It definitely starts with the people, not the firearms. If you stop firearms, those same people will find another way because they don't care about other people.
 
B

Bernie Williams

Audioholic Intern
A couple of issues with background checks:
  • FBI runs it and it is always underfunded
  • States cannot be compelled to submit data (such as mental health, convictions, domestic violence, etc) submission is spotty at times. (actually non-existant many times.)
  • Even the the armed forces is not compliant at times. Remember the former Air Force member issue that should have been picked up? I believe it was a church shooting in Texas. The Air Force had not been submitting any data for awhile.
I have also heard of many straw man purchases that do not get prosecuted.
My suspicion is that we have plenty of laws on the books. The funding and/or compliance just is not there.
 
highfigh

highfigh

Audioholic Slumlord
A couple of issues with background checks:
  • FBI runs it and it is always underfunded
  • States cannot be compelled to submit data (such as mental health, convictions, domestic violence, etc) submission is spotty at times. (actually non-existant many times.)
  • Even the the armed forces is not compliant at times. Remember the former Air Force member issue that should have been picked up? I believe it was a church shooting in Texas. The Air Force had not been submitting any data for awhile.
I have also heard of many straw man purchases that do not get prosecuted.
My suspicion is that we have plenty of laws on the books. The funding and/or compliance just is not there.
And that lack of funding falls on the shoulders of Congress, which can be compelled by POTUS to DO THEIR FREAKING JOB! They all act as if they're doing so much, but they just sit there and BS us. I blame everyone in government who has ever said we need to fix this but didn't do anything about it. They're doing a great job- just ask them.

Mental health has a stigma that no other area of our lives can match and it's carried for the rest of the life of the person. Also, in domestic violence situations and abusive households/relationships, the fear of retaliation or denial of the reality cause people to drop charges or not press them at all, even after being beaten/shot/stabbed, etc.

I have mentioned a neighbor whom I call 'the hillbilly'- he was shot in the leg a couple of weeks ago, as he drove home from a bar. He called 911 and told them he broke his leg, but didn't know how and when they checked him, they found a bullet wound and when they were outside, they saw four holes in his wife's car, so they impounded it to look for more evidence. This guy has an AR-style rifle, had a CCP which, I hope, he lost after failing a breathalizer test while carrying a pistol and is known to be a boozehound- he was banned from the nearby bars, has a possession with intent to deliver Coke and Marijuana, a lewd & lascivious and has threatened suicide by gun while drunk (but at home), yet he still has at least the AR. I have serious problems with that. I wouldn't be surprised to come home and see ambulances, squad cars, fire trucks and possibly the Medical Examiner at his house. He could hit my house from his yard, too- I really want him gone.

The thing about straw man purchases- they have to be discovered first and that usually comes after a shooting.

As of yesterday morning, Milwaukee had five murders since Sunday and at least one more later in the day.
 
GO-NAD!

GO-NAD!

Audioholic Spartan
I'm not sure this thread will be any more constructive than any of the previous discussions of gun violence. The availability (or not) of mental health care is a red herring. What's the proportion of crimes committed by those who would be clinically diagnosed as mentally ill anyway? All countries have the same mental health problems as America. The difference is the sheer quantity of firearms floating around there. And, it has spilled over into Canada - a large proportion of crime guns here were smuggled in from the US. It's much worse in Mexico.

But, but...the second amendment! Sure, but that certainly doesn't help with the issue. With such a large number of firearms in circulation, I'm not sure any new regulations - or stricter enforcement of existing regulations - will make much difference. Crime guns can be confiscated and destroyed, but as long as new ones are being made some will find their way into the hands of criminals.
 
highfigh

highfigh

Audioholic Slumlord
I'm not sure this thread will be any more constructive than any of the previous discussions of gun violence. The availability (or not) of mental health care is a red herring. What's the proportion of crimes committed by those who would be clinically diagnosed as mentally ill anyway? All countries have the same mental health problems as America. The difference is the sheer quantity of firearms floating around there. And, it has spilled over into Canada - a large proportion of crime guns here were smuggled in from the US. It's much worse in Mexico.

But, but...the second amendment! Sure, but that certainly doesn't help with the issue. With such a large number of firearms in circulation, I'm not sure any new regulations - or stricter enforcement of existing regulations - will make much difference. Crime guns can be confiscated and destroyed, but as long as new ones are being made some will find their way into the hands of criminals.
Red herring? Would sane people kill others in large numbers? I can't think of many alternative reasons for killing, other than the ones doing it are just terrible people. One of the more frequent triggers in recent shootings- people who were fired from their job and they went back to kill. Is it normal behavior when someone goes off to that extent? I would argue that they had previous mental issues that may be a major factor.

A former chef at a restaurant near Green Bay went back last week and killed two, shot another- he had been terminated and banned from the facility. In checking further, I found a case in the WI Circuit Court records that a woman had successfully gotten a TRO for Domestic Violence against someone with the same name as the shooter, in March of this year. In the case records, it showed "Injunction w/out firearm restriction for Pofahl, Bruce".

If the mentally ill aren't disproportionately violent, why do they need to be drugged or physically restrained more often than others? Why are so many in jails and prisons considered 'mentally ill' and why are so many murderers committed, rather than imprisoned? Is 'death by cop' a method of dying that a sane person would choose?

What causes road rage? That has been a growing contributor to the violence. Yesterday, someone who was clearly PO'd rammed another car before driving in a circle and ramming it again. The rammed car had an infant inside and a woman who had been in it was yelling to get the person to stop. Seconds later, the driver of the ramming car fired several rounds at the other. It may have been road rage, it may have been a domestic case but it's not normal behavior.

All countries have the same mental health problems as America? How would that be possible? Are you ignoring psychosis, brought on by years or decades of drug/alcohol abuse? Do all countries have the same population, cramped in small areas of major cities, basically left to rot by the city government? It's not uncommon for people with some kind of 'organic' (not drug-induced) mental illness to commit violent crimes, but we also need to look at the relationship between drug abuse/psychosis and violent crime- it's well known that this can be a major contributor. The drugs may be illegal, or the violence can be caused by the use or withdrawal from psychiatric drugs- one thing is sure- these people aren't acting normally.

Some of this info was found in the link- look at the number of people on meds and the total killed by them-

 
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GO-NAD!

GO-NAD!

Audioholic Spartan
Red herring? Would sane people kill others in large numbers? I can't think of many alternative reasons for killing, other than the ones doing it are just terrible people. One of the more frequent triggers in recent shootings- people who were fired from their job and they went back to kill. Is it normal behavior when someone goes off to that extent? I would argue that they had previous mental issues that may be a major factor.

A former chef at a restaurant near Green Bay went back last week and killed two, shot another- he had been terminated and banned from the facility. In checking further, I found a case in the WI Circuit Court records that a woman had successfully gotten a TRO for Domestic Violence against someone with the same name as the shooter, in March of this year. In the case records, it showed "Injunction w/out firearm restriction for Pofahl, Bruce".

If the mentally ill aren't disproportionately violent, why do they need to be drugged or physically restrained more often than others? Why are so many in jails and prisons considered 'mentally ill' and why are so many murderers committed, rather than imprisoned? Is 'death by cop' a method of dying that a sane person would choose?

What causes road rage? That has been a growing contributor to the violence. Yesterday, someone who was clearly PO'd rammed another car before driving in a circle and ramming it again. The rammed car had an infant inside and a woman who had been in it was yelling to get the person to stop. Seconds later, the driver of the ramming car fired several rounds at the other. It may have been road rage, it may have been a domestic case but it's not normal behavior.

All countries have the same mental health problems as America? How would that be possible? Are you ignoring psychosis, brought on by years or decades of drug/alcohol abuse? Do all countries have the same population, cramped in small areas of major cities, basically left to rot by the city government? It's not uncommon for people with some kind of 'organic' (not drug-induced) mental illness to commit violent crimes, but we also need to look at the relationship between drug abuse/psychosis and violent crime- it's well known that this can be a major contributor. The drugs may be illegal, or the violence can be caused by the use or withdrawal from psychiatric drugs- one thing is sure- these people aren't acting normally.

Some of this info was found in the link- look at the number of people on meds and the total killed by them-

Study after study has found that the overwhelming majority of mentally ill people are more of a danger to themselves, or be victims of harm from others, than to be a danger to anyone else. I never claimed that all countries share the same mental health problems. You can list as many individual incidents as you want, but that won't change the overall reality. That's why blaming mental illness is a red herring.

Mental Health Myths and Facts | MentalHealth.gov

Myth: People with mental health problems are violent and unpredictable.
Fact: The vast majority of people with mental health problems are no more likely to be violent than anyone else. Most people with mental illness are not violent and only 3%–5% of violent acts can be attributed to individuals living with a serious mental illness. In fact, people with severe mental illnesses are over 10 times more likely to be victims of violent crime than the general population. You probably know someone with a mental health problem and don't even realize it, because many people with mental health problems are highly active and productive members of our communities.
Some people point out Switzerland's high rate of firearm ownership and relatively low gun crime rates. However, firearm ownership in Switzerland is 1/4 that of America, per capita. And, gun crime there is the highest in Europe - it just looks low compared to the US. They may also have a more community-minded attitude rather than the individualistic outlook prevailing in the US. And, there are probably better social supports - but that's just conjecture on my part.

Again, the single biggest factor in gun crime is the quantity of weaponry in America. There's no getting around that.

If you want better/more mental health care, the public will have to pay for that. What are the chances of that happening?
 
Mikado463

Mikado463

Audioholic Samurai
. You can list as many individual incidents as you want, but that won't change the overall reality. That's why blaming mental illness is a red herring.
and that's part of the utter BS ! for ANYBODY that commits mass murder has mental issues, no if, ands or buts !!!
 
highfigh

highfigh

Audioholic Slumlord
Study after study has found that the overwhelming majority of mentally ill people are more of a danger to themselves, or be victims of harm from others, than to be a danger to anyone else. I never claimed that all countries share the same mental health problems. You can list as many individual incidents as you want, but that won't change the overall reality. That's why blaming mental illness is a red herring.

Mental Health Myths and Facts | MentalHealth.gov

Some people point out Switzerland's high rate of firearm ownership and relatively low gun crime rates. However, firearm ownership in Switzerland is 1/4 that of America, per capita. And, gun crime there is the highest in Europe - it just looks low compared to the US. They may also have a more community-minded attitude rather than the individualistic outlook prevailing in the US. And, there are probably better social supports - but that's just conjecture on my part.

Again, the single biggest factor in gun crime is the quantity of weaponry in America. There's no getting around that.

If you want better/more mental health care, the public will have to pay for that. What are the chances of that happening?
Right, but that's the reason I mentioned 'organic' mental issues- the ones that can't be attributed to some other cause. Those are the ones that are in the 'danger to themselves" but when they're checked on, the reason is "they're presenting a danger to themselves or others".

Swiss gun ownership is second highest in Europe and from Wiki, "The International Crime Victims Survey conducted in 2004-05 reported that approximately 28% of all households in Switzerland owned guns, giving Switzerland the second-highest percentage of firearm ownership in Europe.[16]"

Regarding the community-minded attitude- I think that would be an incredible thing to have here. People are far too selfish. Oh, sure- some make all kinds of noise about community after a killing, but then they go back to normal. "What can I do to help?" is a foreign concept for many.

As far as the number of guns, it wouldn't be as much of a problem if people would store them more responsibly but the main problem with this idea is that secure storage is needed because others will steal them in order to commit crimes. The base cause of the problems is people who want to do bad things- if not for them, we wouldn't need to store them securely to prevent theft but they should still be secured, to prevent accidents or suicides. The paranoia that causes people to decide to get one or more guns shouldn't exist, but there are many reasons given.

As I have posted many times, people need to leave each other alone and stop preying on those they see as innocent or targets of opportunity.
 
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GO-NAD!

GO-NAD!

Audioholic Spartan
and that's part of the utter BS ! for ANYBODY that commits mass murder has mental issues, no if, ands or buts !!!
Maybe those who commit mass murder are mentally ill. But, mass murder is small proportion of gun deaths. It just gets more coverage. And, if by definition, mass murderers are mentally ill, doesn't that give them a "get out of jail free" card?
 
Mikado463

Mikado463

Audioholic Samurai
Maybe those who commit mass murder are mentally ill.
no 'maybes' about it, they are !

But, mass murder is small proportion of gun deaths. It just gets more coverage.
agreed...........

And, if by definition, mass murderers are mentally ill, doesn't that give them a "get out of jail free" card?
and there in lies another issue, perhaps the 'get off the hook' card needs to be re-vamped .......
 
GO-NAD!

GO-NAD!

Audioholic Spartan
Right, but that's the reason I mentioned 'organic' mental issues- the ones that can't be attributed to some other cause. Those are the ones that are in the 'danger to themselves" but when they're checked on, the reason is "they're presenting a danger to themselves or others".

Swiss gun ownership is second highest in Europe and from Wiki, "The International Crime Victims Survey conducted in 2004-05 reported that approximately 28% of all households in Switzerland owned guns, giving Switzerland the second-highest percentage of firearm ownership in Europe.[16]"

Regarding the community-minded attitude- I think that would be an incredible thing to have here. People are far too selfish. Oh, sure- some make all kinds of noise about community after a killing, but then they go back to normal. "What can I do to help?" is a foreign concept for many.

As far as the number of guns, it wouldn't be as much of a problem if people would store them more responsibly but the main problem with this idea is that secure storage is needed because others will steal them in order to commit crimes. The base cause of the problems is people who want to do bad things- if not for them, we wouldn't need to store them securely to prevent theft but they should still be secured, to prevent accidents or suicides. The paranoia that causes people to decide to get one or more guns shouldn't exist, but there are many reasons given.

As I have posted many times, people need to leave each other alone and stop preying on those they see as innocent or targets of opportunity.
While I share your wish that people leave each other alone, I don't see that happening. Sadly.
 
highfigh

highfigh

Audioholic Slumlord
Maybe those who commit mass murder are mentally ill. But, mass murder is small proportion of gun deaths. It just gets more coverage. And, if by definition, mass murderers are mentally ill, doesn't that give them a "get out of jail free" card?
"The United States' FBI follows the Investigative Assistance for Violent Crimes Act of 2012 definition for active shooter incidents and mass killings (defined by the law as three or more people) in public places. Based on this, it is generally agreed that a mass shooting is whenever three or more people are shot (injured or killed), not including the shooters.[1]"

It's not a simple 'Get Out Of Jail Free' card, but it does prevent going to prison and whatever may go along with that. If someone is found to have mental disease or defect, they're often committed to an institution until found competent, sometimes in a prison hospital. Some may be sent to prison if they were found competent for those crimes, but the sentence may up to a judge. Some, like John Hinkley Jr, are released, even though he shot a President and James Brady, his press secretary. Brady was permanently wounded from his brain injuries and died- the death was ruled a homicide, but Hinckley was released in 2016 and is required to live in his mother's home. He's no longer considered a threat to himself or others. We'll see how that goes. He shot Reagan because he wanted to impress Jodie Foster.

.
 
Irvrobinson

Irvrobinson

Audioholic Spartan
There are nearly 400 million civilian guns in the US, the last estimate I saw. 99.99% effective gun regulation means there would still be 40,000 unregulated guns around, and nothing the government does is 99.99% effective.
 
cpp

cpp

Audioholic Field Marshall
Like many have said, it all starts at home. A sorry upbringing by parents that just don't care, or feel the world owes them something well in most cases the children will have a life of drugs, crime, prostitution, gangs to end up in a lot of cases living out of a box looking for that next meal and some acceptance by someone, be it a pimp, gang leader or a peer group bent to crime. There is no political party associated with this as its been going on all over the world since the beginning of time. A shame as some kids, young kids are killed each year and by people that are as sane as we are. Gang violence or pure hate against a race be it black, Asian, white, Hispanic its doesn't mater. IF guns were off the streets, well other means of violence to induce hate is readily available at your hardware or feed store. My family remembers the OK Federal building bombing by two guys in a rented truck loaded with ammonium nitrate fertilizer mixed with about 1,200 pounds of liquid nitromethane and 350 pounds of Tovex. They killed 168 people and injured over 680. So it doesn't have to be guns but our political system seems to forget that. . People have be run over by trucks, cars, planes blown up in the air, or crashed planes into buildings causing the deaths of thousands .
 
Irvrobinson

Irvrobinson

Audioholic Spartan
There are nearly 400 million civilian guns in the US, the last estimate I saw. 99.99% effective gun regulation means there would still be 40,000 unregulated guns around, and nothing the government does is 99.99% effective.
In case you're wondering how to visualize 400 million of something... there were about 285 million registered vehicles in the US in 2019. So let's say there's about 300 million registered vehicles this year. Now imagine when you're out and about that every vehicle you see is a gun. Then think there are really one third more you can't see.
 
GO-NAD!

GO-NAD!

Audioholic Spartan
Like many have said, it all starts at home. A sorry upbringing by parents that just don't care, or feel the world owes them something well in most cases the children will have a life of drugs, crime, prostitution, gangs to end up in a lot of cases living out of a box looking for that next meal and some acceptance by someone, be it a pimp, gang leader or a peer group bent to crime. There is no political party associated with this as its been going on all over the world since the beginning of time. A shame as some kids, young kids are killed each year and by people that are as sane as we are. Gang violence or pure hate against a race be it black, Asian, white, Hispanic its doesn't mater. IF guns were off the streets, well other means of violence to induce hate is readily available at your hardware or feed store. My family remembers the OK Federal building bombing by two guys in a rented truck loaded with ammonium nitrate fertilizer mixed with about 1,200 pounds of liquid nitromethane and 350 pounds of Tovex. They killed 168 people and injured over 680. So it doesn't have to be guns but our political system seems to forget that. . People have be run over by trucks, cars, planes blown up in the air, or crashed planes into buildings causing the deaths of thousands .
Well, this speaks to larger societal problems, doesn't it? As the saying goes, "guns don't kill people, people kill people". But, if the "wrong" people don't have access to a firearm, they can't kill anybody with one. Of course, with determination and planning, someone can make a bomb, drive through crowd, hijack an aircraft, etc. However, if there were no guns available, how many people will expend the time, effort and planning to commit their crimes with other methods? There are always knives, but they require someone to get "close and personal". A lot fewer people would be willing and/or able to commit their attacks in such a manner.

With such a quantity of weaponry in circulation, any new regulations - or more strict enforcement of current ones - would take generations to have a noticeable effect.

Maybe it's time to address the lack of social mobility.
Poverty, lack of social mobility, government distrust contribute to U.S. gun violence - UPI.com
 
highfigh

highfigh

Audioholic Slumlord
In case you're wondering how to visualize 400 million of something... there were about 285 million registered vehicles in the US in 2019. So let's say there's about 300 million registered vehicles this year. Now imagine when you're out and about that every vehicle you see is a gun. Then think there are really one third more you can't see.
OK, so how many vehicles are used to intentionally kill someone? The answer to that is "A few", but it only requires a decision to go from mode of transportation to weapon. Whether ramming a person, another vehicle, building or whatever and regardless of whether driven by its owner/borrower or stolen, a bad decision caused it to become a weapon.

Some gun dealers don't care who buys guns- they only care that they're getting money in the transaction.

Then, there's the high number of guns that are stolen annually- from the link-

"While every state experiences high levels of gun theft, the scope of the problem varies widely from state to state—as demonstrated in Table 1. For many states, these numbers are likely an undercount, as gun owners in most states are not required by law to report gun thefts and police agencies from state to state have inconsistent reporting practices."

State & federal government need to get a handle on this, damned soon.

 

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