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US democracy at work

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  1. #91

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mat:
    While I understand why a gun MIGHT have been necessary a few decades ago when farmer joe had to defend its territory blablabla, I am still wondering why people need to have guns nowadays (especially in developped cities/countries where it is not really necessary to have a gun/knife to kill your lunch or your diner)
    First, a disclaimer, I was a former member of the National Rifle Association (NRA)....no longer as I stopped paying the dues quite some time ago. However, I still have a valid State of Illinois (FOID) Firearm Owner Identification Card (although I do not own any firearms).

    Having said that, I will attempt to explain my feelings on the subject and why I am an avid supporter of the decision made recently by the U.S. Supreme Court.

    To answer your question Mat, I have to go back to the drafters of the Declaration of Independence and the thought process of the forefathers of the US Constitution:

    "We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. — That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, — That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness."

    You see, the original thought process of the forefathers was that government should be held accountable for its actions and have a certain fear not to abuse the ones they govern. It is the fact that those farmers had guns, that allowed them to form a militia and stand up to the tyrant King and his red coat army (whose feelings of superiority of empire....which are alive and well today , have overshadowed their common sense in strategy needed to fight a guerrilla war...wow that almost sound like Iraq..but I digress).

    The world is full of oppression and many rights are being taken away by corrupt and fear insighting Governments from people every single day (many of these in the US). When the smoke clears, a gun is the only tool left to protect your liberty, property and family from an enemy (foreign or domestic). The framers of the constitution were certain of one thing; the system of checks and balances must exist to ensure that power was not abused (unfortunately many of these checks and balances have failed). It is my view that gun ownership is the last remaining "control", if you will, against the absolute power and the complete slippage to abusive totalitarian rule.

    Now that I'm nearing the end of my rant, do I believe that people should be freely allowed to have guns without any regulation? NO, I do not. I believe that strong regulations must be enforced. I believe that licensing should be required to obtain a gun from all (100%) of dealers. Background checks should be conducted on every applicant (even if it takes a few weeks), a gun safety and training course should also be mandatory as well as a psychological examination and clearance. I also believe that those gun owners with families are required to have everyone in the family attend a gun safety course and a spousal consent should also be required for households with children. I believe that guns could be an effective crime deterrent, but I also believe that people must take responsibilities for their actions.

    In conclusion I just want to say something to my "more sensible" friends in the words of Chuck Heston: "You can have my gun...when you pry it from my cold dead hands!"



    I can only imagine the red bars coming in after this one

  2. #92

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    While Climber07 gives an excellent account of the origin of the republic he fails to account for the changed times in his view that guns are good but just need regulation. The strong militias are no longer reasonable as checks and balances against oppression by the national government is no longer feasible as the US military is far too strong to succumb any local militias (National Guard).

    The conclusion that the right to bear arms as individual private citizens should be inalienable despite changed times and the tragedy that guns brings to thousands of Americans every year is what is astonishes me.

    There are many things that governments require of its citizens but guns seem to be one of the last bastions of common sense. If we want freedom then why do Americans have to have car insurance? There is no requirement to have health insurance for its citizenry.

    I know can think of few good reasons the average urban resident needs to possess hand guns but I can think of many examples of where it might have been best that the guns weren't in the home.

    Last edited by Football16; 28-06-2008 at 12:14 PM.

  3. #93

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    Well I have read the whole thread and still don't understand the desire for a gun and while I still think you are mad for wanting to do so, it's your country and your life. From the UK so accept it is a cultural difference. Spend a lot of time in the Philippines and unfortunately apart from hot dogs, burgers and over powerful Presidents and Mayors, widespread gun ownership (and related deaths) seems to be the US gift to the people there. (oh and of course the dreaded American English )

    The main thing that has been reinforced to me is Chowfun's limited intelligence.


  4. #94

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    YouTube - Idiot.se

    This is the case for the right to bear arms. I have changed my mind. Everyone should be armed.



    Last edited by Football16; 28-06-2008 at 12:58 PM.

  5. #95
    Quote Originally Posted by climber07:

    To answer your question Mat, I have to go back to the drafters of the Declaration of Independence and the thought process of the forefathers of the US Constitution:


    The world is full of oppression and many rights are being taken away by corrupt and fear insighting Governments from people every single day (many of these in the US). When the smoke clears, a gun is the only tool left to protect your liberty, property and family from an enemy (foreign or domestic). It is my view that gun ownership is the last remaining "control", if you will, against the absolute power and the complete slippage to abusive totalitarian rule.


    This is simply ludicrous. The american constitution is a phenomenal document but to say its infallible and has complete applicability 200+ years in the future is idiotic at best and borders on religion at worst.

    Granted you want to be part of well regulated 'militia' and want to uphold freedom in the event of big brother becoming elected, do you think you will be able to stand for a second against the might of the american military (which I presume is the hollywood induced 'v for vendetta' scenario you envisage)

    As far as I am concerned a total ban on guns in any country would save at least one life a year...and I see no need to give further justification.

  6. #96

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    Quote Originally Posted by jayinhongkong:
    Firearms are designed for defensive purposes or sport. They are designed to stop people or animals or to shoot accurately. No gun designer aims to design a weapon for 'assault,' and that includes so called 'assault' rifles. The M16/M4 is designed to disable troops so that another two troops are needed to get each injured soldier off the field.

    I'm sorry, automatic weapons are not meant to disable, they are meant to kill. As to being designed to defensive purposes or sport again that's being naive... why are some guns designed to be fingerprint resistant? Why the resistance to smart guns? The gun companies only goal is to make money and as much as possible regardless of what the guns are used for

    Also, in 2005, New York State alone had over 1,463 deaths from vehicular accidents. Vehicles, which as you stated are not designed to kill, are far more lethal than firearms if you extrapolate this data across the country.

    Disingenuous since virtually every citizen uses vehicles but only about 25% of people interact with firearms yet the numbers are almost the same.

    Yes, the US has an alcohol problem, but the UK's is far worse. I recently read an article which stated alcohol is now a worse problem than tobacco is in the UK. Again, the issue is software-related. Hardware just does what it is instructed to. We need software upgrades, not hardware bans.
    There's no doubt that alcohol is a larger problem for both the US and the UK than guns. It certainly doesn't help to have an alcohol problems combined with so many guns being freely available.

  7. #97

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    I don't own a gun nor ever will but I don't necessarily disagree that people can own some firearms.

    Switzerland has been brought up because of high gun ownership, it should also be pointed out that every citizen is comprehensively trained how to use it, people are not allowed to carry concealed or loaded weapon either. Gun control is indeed quite strict. There is a difference between gun ownership and gun control.

    Although this seems to have degenerated into a gun debate, my original intent was to point out the politics of it and how scary it is to see the Supreme Court acting this way.

    What troubles me the most is the fact that these issues had already been rules on by lower courts and the Supreme Court has had years and years to address it and always refused. Now all of a sudden, they rule... Why? That's what I meant the thread to be about... Essentially political appointees have taken a stand against reasonable laws passed by elected officials.

    The ruling had profound effects. The ruling states that laws prohibiting concealed weapons are constitutional, as are bans on gun possession by felons and the mentally ill.

    It also upholds laws forbidding guns in “sensitive places such as schools and government buildings.” All workplaces should be able to choose to ban weapons. Yet, challenges are not only being mounted on handgun bans but on any restrictions put on weapons... Trigger locks, concealed weapons, even school or workplace bans.

    Work that has been done for more than 25 years by elected officials is now in jeopardy because of 5 political appointees... What's next? Abortion?


  8. #98

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    Quote Originally Posted by gilleshk:
    Switzerland has been brought up because of high gun ownership, it should also be pointed out that every citizen is comprehensively trained how to use it, people are not allowed to carry concealed or loaded weapon either. Gun control is indeed quite strict.
    I don't think anyone here was asking to allow everyone to just walk into a 7-11 and pick up a shotgun.

    You're bringing up all these stats about guns killing people, guns being the problem laa-dee-daa, but evidently from Switzerland's experience, guns aren't the sole problem. It's the use and control of the guns. Responsible gun use isn't much of a problem. The Swiss have managed to arm half of the population without everyone shooting each other as you seem to be picturing it in the USA (and even THERE where things are more lax, more than 99.9% of gun owners never kill or get killed by a gun).

  9. #99

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    Quote Originally Posted by gilleshk:
    There's no doubt that alcohol is a larger problem for both the US and the UK than guns.
    True if you're talking pure numbers (I'm not sure about the ratio of users to deaths...), but once again you're turning into a "BAN THIS!" zealot by ignoring the 99.9%+ of alcohol drinkers who manage to drink regularly without killing someone or being killed due to alcohol.


    There's absolutely nothing wrong with responsible drinking, as you seem to keep saying there is (back in the alcohol vs steroids thread). It's quite simple really - know your limits. Don't drink so much that you end up puking up, killing your liver, or thinking a gun is a soda dispenser.

    Unfortunately alcohol + stupid/irresponsible people leads to accidents... but the same can be said about absolutely anything. The problem in that formula is not the alcohol, but the stupid and irresponsible people. Give them a brick and they'd probably manage to break their foot.

  10. #100

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    Quote Originally Posted by [email protected]:
    Granted you want to be part of well regulated 'militia' and want to uphold freedom in the event of big brother becoming elected, do you think you will be able to stand for a second against the might of the american military (which I presume is the hollywood induced 'v for vendetta' scenario you envisage)
    V for Vendetta... That's a good one! I also am a big fan of Children of Men. Yes, you're right, a big brother scenario is so hard to envision, between the homeland security spying on Americans and listening to their phone calls, UK with their CCTV cameras, and China filtering the internet content. Wow, those ideas are so far fetched.

    We do a lot of things in the name of security and people don't even notice their Liberties slipping away. Can I last a second against the US military?? Perhaps not...but if I even take out one bastard who comes into my home, it will be worth it. You see there are two kinds of people in this world:

    First, are like herds of sheep that will be happily escorted to their slaughter houses,

    Second, are like wild horses that refuse to be "broken in."

    I can also assure you that if such a scenario played out (i.e. Revolution), turning the military against its own citizens and families is much different than turning them against "bad people" far far away.

    Quote Originally Posted by [email protected]:
    As far as I am concerned a total ban on guns in any country would save at least one life a year...and I see no need to give further justification.
    As you can see from the Football16's clips above, not every life is worth saving and I will argue that a reduced gene pool from these types of gun accidents actually benefits the society.

    As we're posting clips and people like their statistics, here is an interesting segment (from ABC News) which aired out after Virginia Tech shooting about 1.5 years ago:



    Interestigly enough, if we actually take the time and look into the voiolent crime statistics in Chicago and Washington DC after their "gun bans" we will notice that they drastically increased.

    U.S. streets are flooded with black market weapons, and as criminals clearly say themselves, they don't give a rat's ass about a government "gun ban." Guess what??? They don't actually have to buy them in the stores...
    Last edited by climber07; 28-06-2008 at 05:16 PM.

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