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You are here: MacNN Forums > Community > MacNN Lounge > Political/War Lounge > Why do people need assault rifles?

Why do people need assault rifles? (Page 4)
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Clinically Insane
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Jan 8, 2013, 01:18 AM
 
Originally Posted by Ω View Post
My point was that any crazed muppet can take a gun and kill many people, and can do it very quickly. Try that with a sword. Have you never heard "bringing a knife to a gun fight"? Tends to imply that you are woefully overmatched, or out of your depth. 99% of the time I would place my money on the gun.
Not really, shooting accurately takes skill. They have to practice beforehand, and if their weapon jams, they're screwed.

Or maybe you are right and America should give their police officers knives instead....
If they were fit enough to do it, I'd be all for officers carrying a sword with their sidearm. Again, in an enclosed space, dozens of unarmed people, I'd prefer a long blade every single time.
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Jan 8, 2013, 03:18 AM
 
Originally Posted by Shaddim View Post
If they were fit enough to do it, I'd be all for officers carrying a sword with their sidearm. Again, in an enclosed space, dozens of unarmed people, I'd prefer a long blade every single time.
Knives, swords and guns are completely different weapons to use physiologically. It takes a long time to train troops to use bayonets for a reason. Pulling a trigger is many many times easier than physically sticking steel into a persons body. at least for normal people.

I would assume that the after effects on the person using it, having actually killed someone, are broadly similar, but the barrier to entry in using the weapon would be much higher.
     
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Jan 8, 2013, 03:49 AM
 
You know what's terrifying? A crossbow. I've been at the pointy ends of knives and guns and even fished a bullet out of my leg when I was a kid, and I can let you know that when someone points a crossbow at your chest they have your full attention. Bullets go all the way in and knives go in and out, but a crossbow bolt sticking out of your chest? No thanks.

Hard to go on a rampage with a crossbow though. I knew a bloke who tried to do a robbery with a crossbow. It was all going well until he fired of a warning shot. Then it was Run Away time.

Then his getaway car got away without him. Five years.
     
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Jan 8, 2013, 04:03 AM
 
I think a lot of my zeal comes out of the fact that my country has very little gun violence. I can honestly say I have never met anyone who is a gun owner openly. Simply, gun owners are either farmers or crazy people. I am also happy walking down the street late at night with no concerns about my safety. I find it sad that others are looking over their shoulders.

Tried to find some figures, but nothing too recent. 2009 deaths by gun was 11 which was a big increase on the years before hand which were 7 and 5.

Watching Bladerunner tonight and I think more people "died" during this movie, but personally I think it is not movies to blame for violence, but the lack of a moral compass instilled into people.
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Jan 8, 2013, 04:18 AM
 
Originally Posted by Face Ache View Post
You know what's terrifying? A crossbow. I've been at the pointy ends of knives and guns and even fished a bullet out of my leg when I was a kid, and I can let you know that when someone points a crossbow at your chest they have your full attention. Bullets go all the way in and knives go in and out, but a crossbow bolt sticking out of your chest? No thanks.

Hard to go on a rampage with a crossbow though. I knew a bloke who tried to do a robbery with a crossbow. It was all going well until he fired of a warning shot. Then it was Run Away time.

Then his getaway car got away without him. Five years.
Don't you live in Oz? You guys are crazy!

We had a nutter a few years back with a samurai sword. Got shot and then later died in prison (self inflicted) . For the record the one person he did kill happened with a gun.
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Jan 8, 2013, 05:41 AM
 
Originally Posted by OldManMac View Post
I don't recall saying she wanted one because her boyfriend has one. She's wanted a gun for years, long before she met her boyfriend. And even if she wants one because her boyfriend has one, what's wrong with that? Maybe he let her shoot one of his weapons, and she decided she wanted one. I don't care.
I was just wondering. Of course there are two reasons she might have wanted one because her boyfriend had one. One as you describe is just because she 'tried it and liked it' or the other because she might have figured if he had one then she might have need of one some day. It doesn't sound like that is the case though.
Thanks for answering the question at any rate.


Originally Posted by OldManMac View Post
I do trust him completely. Some adults are able to discuss their issues without getting into arguments and fights. My daughter and her boyfriend, who have been together six years, have never been in a loud altercation.
Thats quite an achievement. My last girlfriend lived for shouting matches.



[QUOTE=OldManMac;4210472]
Please tell me where my guns are "lying around."
[QUOTE]

People keep taking my generalisations personally. I'm sure you don't leave them on every table and in every drawer in the house, but I get the impression that some people do (I saw an episode of that cop show and Steven Seagal had an automatic rifle of some kind propped up beside his bed at all times.) I'm sure there are more than a few irresponsible idiots out there who have guns and literally leave them lying around.

Originally Posted by OldManMac View Post
A lot of people have differing ideas as to how the government should be run, and there is a fringe on every side of any issue. The "overthrow the government crowd you want to use as projection for the rest of us is extremely small, and out of a population of 80 million gun owners, statistically insignificant.
I'm glad if thats the case, but its one of the biggest reasons cited as to why you still need the 2nd amendment.


Originally Posted by OldManMac View Post
It may have been fascinating to you, but it seems perfectly reasonable and logical to me. I responded by asking a similar question to you, about automobiles. I can't fathom why anyone would spend hundreds of thousands of dollars on a car, but the difference between me and you, from what I see, is that I leave it at that, because that's their choice, and it really doesn't concern me, other than a cursory question. I don't pursue it to the end of the earth, unlike the anti-gun crowd. There is no satisfactory answer to them, because what they're really after is to get rid of private gun ownership, and no matter how many reasons you give, their answer is always the same; "I can't understand why you want guns." They don't, and never will, understand, because their whole agenda isn't to get a reasonable answer; it's to get rid of private gun ownership. Facts matter little to them, so they keep asking one more question, even though they'll never get an answer that will satisfy them.
Its odd that you say the reasoning stops at the prevention of gun ownership. If not to reduce the number of people being killed unnecessarily, or to reduce the rate of other gun-related crime, why would anyone care about gun ownership.


Originally Posted by OldManMac View Post
You're correct, it was about 30 years ago that the focus of the NRA changed, towards more private ownership of guns, and I'm fine with that. We have indeed seen rising gun ownership, at the same time as we've seen a steady decline in violent crime, and homicide. Those who are against private ownership of guns have repeated, ad nauseam, ever since, that carnage would ensue any time another state let it's citizens own more guns, and/or conceal carry. It doesn't matter to the Brady Campaign and the Violence Policy Center, two of the main anti-gun groups, that they've been consistently wrong, and the homicide rate, and numbers, have declined consistently over those thirty years, despite a growing population owning more guns. Apparently they have enough funding from those who have one intent, to get rid of private ownership of guns, regardless of the facts. They are the type of people that I refer as "I just know," and no matter how many facts you present, their ears are set to tune you out, and they'll go to their graves insisting that they're right, even as the evidence clearly points other wise. One can find these type of people in any field of interest.
And you don't think the entire reason the NRA spearheaded this campaign was simply to sell more guns?
The facts from around the world pretty clearly demonstrate that fewer guns equals less gun crime and less gun deaths. There are other factors when it comes to crime rates however. My recollection is that violent crime was still rising in the 80s and it wasn't until the late 80s - early 90s it started to drop. This of course does not correlate to the NRA push so it makes sense that the pro-gun people would gloss over it or alter it to fit their opinion. This ignorance of facts happens on both sides of any argument as you say, but I see more of it happening on the pro-gun side.

Originally Posted by OldManMac View Post
They were around (and a lot of them still are) when black people got uppity and decided they wanted to vote. They were around when women got uppity and decided they wanted to vote, and dog forbid, even do man's jobs. They were around (and more than a few still are) when blacks got uppity and decided they could marry white people.
Is it really the case the all rights are equal? I'm quite surprised you would equate the gun issue to minority voting rights.

Originally Posted by OldManMac View Post
There are a lot of them around today, who predict the end of Western civilization because Mary got uppity and decided she wanted to marry Suzie. Jerry Falwell no doubt went to his grave 100% convinced that the end of the world as he knew it was coming because gays were allowed to marry in a very few places. Pat Robertson, Brian Fischer, and a few other well-known "ministers" will no doubt go to their graves thinking the same, and indeed are still preaching that, despite the fact that, even as more gays are allowed to marry, the states and countries where it's been allowed haven't fallen apart. They blame hurricanes and other natural disasters on gay marriage; because it's a convenient way to bring lots of money in from people who use emotion to support their positions. The Brady Campaign, again, is emotion based. Logic has nothing to do with this.
I'm sorry but the religious-like fervour on this issue is almost exclusively on the pro-gun side. Its not surprising at all given the correlation with conservatism, republicanism and therefore actual religion. Lets not make this a religious issue though, I've been behaving myself by avoiding that angle thus far since I know it bores everyone to tears when I go down that road.


Originally Posted by OldManMac View Post
Logic has no limit. I'm not even going to argue that the numbers are correlated. As I see it, you're subtly implying that, in the end, you're still going to be right. Is the rate of gun deaths higher than other countries? Probably so, but I don't live in another country, and the one I do live in still allows me the right to own and carry a gun, for reasons that I don't have to explain to any one else (and that's not an emotional response, but fact). Actually, if you want to know some more truth, the number may plateau, because younger generations aren't interested in guns as much as us older people. Perhaps some day the gun ownership issue, as seen by those who are anti-gun, may solve itself. I have my own theory on why we are such a gun loving culture, but that's for another time.
Lets hope that trend among the young continues and the problem will eventually go away. I suspect it might have to get to a point where there are enough non-gun owners to vote for a change rather than just leaving it as it is forever, but either way as long as the incidence of shootings goes down its a good thing. I think being less enamoured with guns would be generally healthier anyway.




Originally Posted by OldManMac View Post
I never indicated what I wanted the guns for, but, as I've already pointed out, I'm not really concerned what you think, as I've done nothing illegal, and never will. If I want to take my .45 caliber pistol out and shoot 100 rounds into the side of a hill, safely, at $1.00 a bullet, that's my right.
So because you can you should? Seems like an odd reason. Never see Jurassic Park?


Originally Posted by OldManMac View Post
I don't find that sad. None of my guns have been used in a violent fashion. That's not a concept I have a hard time understanding. By your rationale, we should outlaw knives, because some of them are used to kill and maim people. We should outlaw ropes, because someone was dragged behind a pickup truck to their death. The list could go on and on.
I make exceptions for things that have other primary purposes. That includes most things other than guns, grenades, mustard gas, that sort of thing.


Originally Posted by OldManMac View Post
Until you become my superior and I'm forced to obey your laws, it doesn't have to make any sense to you. Only me.
This strikes me as exactly the sort of emotional response you accuse me of. Refusal to justify or rationalise your position? How do you expect to convince anyone of anything or even just allow them to understand you better if you don't explain how or why you think or feel about an issue?

Originally Posted by OldManMac View Post
I've explained it all I'm going to. Your mind seems to be set up to hear no more. You remind me of one of those who "just know," and that's an honest, non-emotional response.
My mind is no more or less made up than yours. I just think you are ignoring some of the facts and numbers to suit your position, whereas I at least am providing reasons why I think your facts and numbers are less indicative of your position than you say they are. When one side stops providing counter-reasoning, the debate is really won which is why I think as I do, but I'd never expect you to admit that because ultimately you probably don't care if you are right, you just want to be right so you'll stick to your guns (!) no matter what evidence is presented or refuted. Not an emotional response, more an emotional basis.
I have plenty of more important things to do, if only I could bring myself to do them....
     
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Jan 8, 2013, 07:41 AM
 
Everyone's favorite conspiracy theorist was on Pies Morgan recently. Jones kept telling that the UK may have a lower rate of gun deaths, but it has a higher rate of death by violent crime. This infamous case comes to mind.


A mother-of-two was brutally hacked to death with a machete on the orders of her jealous husband because she wanted a divorce.

Geeta Aulakh was murdered by a teenager and his illegal immigrant accomplice.

Such was the ferocity of the attack, the 28-year-old’s hand was severed as she tried to defend herself.

Her estranged husband Harpreet Aulakh, 32, offered £5,000 for her to be killed.

Just days before the murder, he was caught on CCTV buying the 14-inch machete for £13.99 in a shop.


Read more: Geeta Aulakh hacked to death with machete 'because she wanted a divorce' | Mail Online
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then there is this one.
A SON who hacked his mother to death with a machete was locked up for life yesterday.

Usman Shahzad, 21, also used another knife and a shower rail to inflict 70 wounds on mum Assia, 40.

She lost several fingertips and her hands were almost severed as she fought to protect herself. But Assia bled to death.

Read more: Son hacks his mum to death with a machete | The Sun |News
Google search result of "death my machete in UK"
https://www.google.com/search?q=deat...ient=firefox-a
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Jan 8, 2013, 08:05 AM
 
Originally Posted by Doc HM View Post
Knives, swords and guns are completely different weapons to use physiologically. It takes a long time to train troops to use bayonets for a reason. Pulling a trigger is many many times easier than physically sticking steel into a persons body. at least for normal people.

I would assume that the after effects on the person using it, having actually killed someone, are broadly similar, but the barrier to entry in using the weapon would be much higher.
So, what you're saying is, people in the UK have devolved to the point where hacking each other to tiny pieces is becoming more palatable, since that type of thing happens with more frequency over there? I guess you guys need to work on banning those things.
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Jan 8, 2013, 11:35 AM
 
Oh so guns are an cultural thing in super-cosmopolitan america, but does anyone see any cultural connection between the two machete examples posted above? Clue: its not 'Britishness'.

In more recent years, we have had issues with so called 'honour killings'. Some of these involve british citizens, but its very much a cultural import. Still it became a problem, people became more aware of it, and we are trying to do things about it because its unacceptable.
People have tried to campaign for legislation against knives, and we have laws about carrying them in public but any kind of ban or restriction beyond the current rules of not selling them to kids would be completely impractical and utterly pointless. Its pretty easy to make your own knife if you really want one, ask anyone who has ever been to jail.
You may notice however that no-one is crying about our 'god-given' rights to own or carry machetes.
I have plenty of more important things to do, if only I could bring myself to do them....
     
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Jan 8, 2013, 05:31 PM
 
Originally Posted by Chongo View Post
Everyone's favorite conspiracy theorist was on Pies Morgan recently. Jones kept telling that the UK may have a lower rate of gun deaths, but it has a higher rate of death by violent crime.
It doesn't surprise me you think Alex Jones is a person worth listening to.
     
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Jan 8, 2013, 05:47 PM
 
Originally Posted by Shaddim View Post
Not really, shooting accurately takes skill. They have to practice beforehand, and if their weapon jams, they're screwed.
Having taught basic training several times (and taught other people to teach basic once), this is my experience: rifles are amazingly easy to learn. Turning a bunch of high school students into effective shooters (on the range at least) isn't even time consuming. You spend a week or so learning how the thing works and how to clean it, and then less than two days at the firing range. Everyone qualifies. We don't even bother to train at 100m, because you can't even miss. How many of these crazed gunmen are shooting at greater than 100m?

You're right about jams. Preventing and clearing jams is the only thing that matters, but even that isn't hard to learn. But hitting something at close range with a rifle is easier than throwing a softball.

And these shooters aren't even aiming at a lone target. A compressed crowd of people is like shooting at a beached whale, and just as immobile.
     
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Jan 8, 2013, 05:49 PM
 
Originally Posted by Shaddim View Post
So, what you're saying is, people in the UK have devolved to the point where hacking each other to tiny pieces is becoming more palatable, since that type of thing happens with more frequency over there? I guess you guys need to work on banning those things.
No, that's not what he's saying at all.

Talking to gun nuts would be a lot more productive if any of them listened to what they were being told, and not shoving words in mouths or building straw men.
     
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Jan 8, 2013, 09:21 PM
 
Originally Posted by Ω View Post
Simply, gun owners are either farmers or crazy people.
Evidence?
     
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Jan 8, 2013, 10:20 PM
 
Originally Posted by lpkmckenna View Post
It doesn't surprise me you think Alex Jones is a person worth listening to.
I don't. He believes Bush 43 planned 9/11. Morgan needs the viewers. Word is CNN has plans to move his show up against Leno/Letterman/Kimmel if his numbers don't go up.

What I'm surprised is that Cruise, Travolta, Alley, Preston, and the rest of the Scientology crowd aren't out there on a "I told you so!" anti psychiatric med's campaign.
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Jan 9, 2013, 08:21 AM
 
This has been an interesting read. It seems our opportunist gun prohibitionists are once again concerned only for gun crimes in the wake of a horrific gun crime. Understandable of course and many of you present some good arguments; if you remove guns, you'll have fewer gun murders. Yes, the right to keep and bear arms can come at an unfortunate cost to society, but there's nothing to suggest infringing this right will correlate to a lower, overall homicide rate. Again, if you're concerned about guns, eliminating them will assuage your concerns while having nothing to do with "saving lives". Gun control also comes at a cost that I think most OECD crime rates and violent crime statistics will show, but there are other factors that cannot be measured such as the fact that a gun does not have to be discharged to be effective as any armed, would-be rape victim could tell you. Those perched atop their homes and businesses with "heavy" weapons during Katrina or even in our most recent Sandy for example, were effective at keeping looters at bay protecting both their properties and their families at a time when the Governor in the first instance was rendered entirely ineffectual, phone lines down - no 911, police abandoning their posts and bailing the city, and late help from the National Guard and others. There are no statistics here that would bolster the support of the right to own and bear arms, but these factors are real.

RE: mass-killings. Strict gun legislation in the Netherlands didn't stop Breivik. Guns weren't necessary for McVeigh, they weren't necessary in the Bath School Disaster, Connecticut has among the most stringent gun control laws in the US as does Chicago. While gun ownership in the US has skyrocketed over the past 20 years, we're now enjoying the lowest homicide rates in 50 years. There's a historic component to the importance of maintaining this right against a tyrannical government and one wonders how effective the Arab-spring might be for example, with rocks and sticks, but this wreaks of the sort of Amrrrkn reasoning that would get sound rebuke from our friends abroad, so... what about protection from one another or any hostile entity that'd ever seek to "put boots on the ground" here be it foreign or domestic? It's no more necessary than your vehicle or home-owners insurance though actuarially speaking, right in line with the cost of the premium.

Americans could certainly try to indict their "cultural imports" for the homicide rate, but IMO that's hastily scapegoating race and culture. The most profound phenomena in the UK, US, and in Canada with its 7% increase in homicide rate is a rapidly-growing population and the related pockets of highly-congested, poor socioeconomic conditions. The US has exponentially more of these pockets, not withstanding large rural areas with very little police presence and related crime prevention, also correlating with poverty. The US homicide rate reflects this with or without consideration for "gun murder".

Why do you need assault rifles? Why do you need freedom of speech? Why are Miranda rights important? Were these values founded on paranoia or are they not meritorious and well-versed in history? These rights often come at a cost to society; do we immediately consider how to infringe them when it's expedient to do so? Should we? You know, for the children?
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Jan 9, 2013, 09:19 AM
 
Welcome back ebuddy! I missed you

Originally Posted by ebuddy View Post
Why do you need assault rifles? Why do you need freedom of speech? Why are Miranda rights important? Were these values founded on paranoia or are they not meritorious and well-versed in history?
I would like to think that the question is about whether each particular right enumerated in the Bill of Rights is still meritorious today, or whether we should amend the amendment to update it with the progress we've made over 200+ years, while still acknowledging the historical importance. On the other hand, I haven't heard a peep about going through the constitutional process, so I guess maybe my hope is nothing more than wishful thinking and the anti-gun rhetoric is just a lot of hot air being blown off.
     
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Jan 9, 2013, 10:17 AM
 
Originally Posted by Uncle Skeleton View Post
I would like to think that the question is about whether each particular right enumerated in the Bill of Rights is still meritorious today, or whether we should amend the amendment to update it with the progress we've made over 200+ years, while still acknowledging the historical importance. On the other hand, I haven't heard a peep about going through the constitutional process, so I guess maybe my hope is nothing more than wishful thinking and the anti-gun rhetoric is just a lot of hot air being blown off.
You've nailed it, right there. I hear a lot of bitching, but no real solutions. Frankly, I think most don't understand US due process and/or were sleeping in civics (one of my favorite classes in HS).
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Jan 9, 2013, 11:13 AM
 
Originally Posted by Chongo View Post
I don't. He believes Bush 43 planned 9/11. Morgan needs the viewers. Word is CNN has plans to move his show up against Leno/Letterman/Kimmel if his numbers don't go up.

What I'm surprised is that Cruise, Travolta, Alley, Preston, and the rest of the Scientology crowd aren't out there on a "I told you so!" anti psychiatric med's campaign.
     
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Jan 9, 2013, 11:31 AM
 
Originally Posted by subego View Post
Got that everybody? The real problem is mental health workers are dumb.

No official report has been issued by the police - who finished weeks ago. The report won't be released until Congress votes in massive gun-control legislation. Hand guns were used to kill the kids - the same kind every police officer carries in America; no "assault weapons" were used.

1012 - Sandy Hook school; mass murderer Lanza on prescribed psychiatric drugs and killed 27 people including himself - the police have yet to release the psychiatric drugs he took
2009 - Columbine - mass murderer Eric Harrs killed 15 people and was on Luvox which has side effects of mania and violence.
2007 - Virginia Tech - mass murderer Cho Seung-Hui killed 32 people and was on Paxil
2005 - mass murderer Jeff Weise killed 9 people and wounded 5 and was on Prozac
2001 - mass murderer Andrea Yates drowned her 5 kids in a bathtub, was on Effexor
2001 - mass murderer Christopher Pittman killed his grandparents and was on Paxil and Zoloft
1998 - mass murderer Kip Kinkel killed 2 kids and wounded 22 others was on Prozac and Ritalin
1996 - murderer Kurt Danysh killed his father and was on Prozac
1989 - mass murderer Patrick Purdy killed 5 kids and wounded 30 was on Amitriptyline and Thorazine
1988 - mass murderer Laurie Dann killed 1 kid and wounded 6; she was on Anafranil and Lithium
1997 - mass murderer Michael Carneal killed 3 kids wounded 1 was on Ritalin
1989 - mass murderer Joespph Wesbacker killed 9 and wounded 18 others and was on Prozac
1981 - John Hinckley tried to assassinate Ronald Reagan, wounding him and James Brady, and was on Valium

What we have here is insane people killing at will and normally at "gun-free" zones where they shoot little kids like fish in a barrel.
     
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Jan 9, 2013, 02:24 PM
 
Originally Posted by BadKosh View Post
No official report has been issued by the police - who finished weeks ago. The report won't be released until Congress votes in massive gun-control legislation. Hand guns were used to kill the kids - the same kind every police officer carries in America; no "assault weapons" were used.

1012 - Sandy Hook school; mass murderer Lanza on prescribed psychiatric drugs and killed 27 people including himself - the police have yet to release the psychiatric drugs he took
2009 - Columbine - mass murderer Eric Harrs killed 15 people and was on Luvox which has side effects of mania and violence.
2007 - Virginia Tech - mass murderer Cho Seung-Hui killed 32 people and was on Paxil
2005 - mass murderer Jeff Weise killed 9 people and wounded 5 and was on Prozac
2001 - mass murderer Andrea Yates drowned her 5 kids in a bathtub, was on Effexor
2001 - mass murderer Christopher Pittman killed his grandparents and was on Paxil and Zoloft
1998 - mass murderer Kip Kinkel killed 2 kids and wounded 22 others was on Prozac and Ritalin
1996 - murderer Kurt Danysh killed his father and was on Prozac
1989 - mass murderer Patrick Purdy killed 5 kids and wounded 30 was on Amitriptyline and Thorazine
1988 - mass murderer Laurie Dann killed 1 kid and wounded 6; she was on Anafranil and Lithium
1997 - mass murderer Michael Carneal killed 3 kids wounded 1 was on Ritalin
1989 - mass murderer Joespph Wesbacker killed 9 and wounded 18 others and was on Prozac
1981 - John Hinckley tried to assassinate Ronald Reagan, wounding him and James Brady, and was on Valium

What we have here is insane people killing at will and normally at "gun-free" zones where they shoot little kids like fish in a barrel.

So then why don't other countries or cities in other countries have these same sort of incidents at the same sort of frequency in relation to the population if this is just random mental insanity?
     
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Jan 9, 2013, 04:25 PM
 
Maybe it's because we're on more drugs than those other countries?
     
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Jan 9, 2013, 06:50 PM
 
Originally Posted by Uncle Skeleton View Post
Welcome back ebuddy! I missed you
Thanks UncleS. It has been refreshing to read more and contribute less, but I had to take a crack at the new, old forum formatting and friends.

I would like to think that the question is about whether each particular right enumerated in the Bill of Rights is still meritorious today, or whether we should amend the amendment to update it with the progress we've made over 200+ years, while still acknowledging the historical importance. On the other hand, I haven't heard a peep about going through the constitutional process, so I guess maybe my hope is nothing more than wishful thinking and the anti-gun rhetoric is just a lot of hot air being blown off.
I'm inclined to agree with you, but there is a "spirit" of US Constitutional law that requires some understanding of the Federalist papers, some historical perspective on what a "militia" was, a knowledge of the ratification process of those Amendments including why the clarification "... the right of the people to keep and bear Arms shall not be infringed" exists in the Amendment, and at least a modicum of reverence for the document. In short, I've learned to lower my expectations here in that regard and arguing from the premise of the US Constitution seemed as germane to the discussion as "because the Bible tells me so". I can't blame them too much, while the US Constitutional Amendment process should matter, there are always Executive Orders.
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Jan 9, 2013, 06:55 PM
 
I have a friend who was treated for depression. He reported this to his local firearms officer knowing full well that he would permanently lose his gun license and have to sell or give away his gun(s) which he did.

People with a history of mental illness should probably never be allowed to own guns, constitutional right or not. People with relatives with history of mental illness should maybe have some extra restrictions on how those guns are kept, especially if they live under the same roof.
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Jan 9, 2013, 10:24 PM
 
They'll just go down to the Bass Pro Shop and pick up one of these bad boys for $20


or use a lawnmower blade like Karl here
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Jan 10, 2013, 02:02 AM
 
Originally Posted by iMOTOR View Post
Evidence?
In MY country. Finding someone with a gun is a definite anomaly. Outside of people who use a gun on the farm I have NEVER met someone who owns a gun or even claims to own a gun.

That is why I live here and have no desire to even visit the USA.

Went back to check, and yes I did say in MY country.
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Jan 10, 2013, 02:20 AM
 
"Los Angeles County (also known as L.A. County or the County of Los Angeles) is a county in the U.S. state of California. As of the 2010 census, the county had a population of 9,818,605"

"Firearms in Los Angeles County kill approximately three people everyday. IVPP/PHIS Death Data, California Department of
Health Services, 2004."

My country has about half the population of LA County yet only had 11 gun deaths in 2009.
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Jan 10, 2013, 06:36 AM
 
California has some of the most restrictive gun control laws in the U.S.... How's that working for them? Apparently not so well.

Also, the firearms are not just jumping up and killing people. People (in LA county often gang members and/or drug distributors) use guns to kill other people (often other gang members and rival drug distributors). If the statistics separated out organized criminal activities such as gang and drug-related crimes, LA county would have a much less scary reputation.

besson, other countries have at least the semblance of a health care system that deals with mental illness, and unlike in the U.S., they tend to use comprehensive approaches to treat such illnesses, instead of simply giving the patient a pill and forgetting about him. It takes a lot of different interventions to help someone with a mental illness, and those are expensive, while a pill (that the patient may find unpleasant due to side effects) is cheap and quick. You can fill in the blanks for why people on psychotropic medications in the U.S. are then ignored until they either get arrested for vagrancy or do something the public notices (run down the street naked and screaming, assault people at street corners and beat them with a bible, etc.).

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Jan 10, 2013, 07:24 AM
 
Originally Posted by ebuddy View Post
there is a "spirit" of US Constitutional law that requires some understanding of the Federalist papers, some historical perspective on what a "militia" was, a knowledge of the ratification process of those Amendments including why the clarification "... the right of the people to keep and bear Arms shall not be infringed" exists in the Amendment, and at least a modicum of reverence for the document.
Well put!

There is a belief, commonly held among those who really don't understand U.S. law, that the second amendment exists to empower the average American citizen against the tyranny of his own government.

It's not true.

This particular argument was invented long after the Bill of Rights was written.

A quick review of history, in particular of Shay's Rebellion (1786) and George Washington's reaction to it, which greatly influenced the Constitutional Convention, will explain what they meant by a well-armed militia. Washington himself led state militias in 1794 to put down the Whiskey Rebellion.

The Second Amendment was written in order to promote the security of the young country by putting down revolution, not promoting it.

And, of course, there are all those other words in the Constitution.

• if the second amendment were intended to allow us to revolt, why does Article 3, Section 3 include "levying war" against the United States as one of the definitions of treason?

• Why does Article 4, Section 4 guarantee that the Federal Government will protect every state of the union "against domestic violence"?

In fact, the Supreme Court's most conservative members have ruled that the Federal Government can restrict gun ownership, especially the kinds of weapons that would be necessary to fight a modern revolution.

Put simply, it is counter-intuitive, ahistorical, and completely out of context to argue that we have guns in order to protect us from our own government.

Nevertheless, regardless of how dumb the argument is, the language remains, and therefore we must contend with the reality that Americans have a right to own guns.
     
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Jan 10, 2013, 09:16 AM
 
Originally Posted by ghporter View Post
California has some of the most restrictive gun control laws in the U.S.... How's that working for them? Apparently not so well.
C'mon, GH, you're better than this. How effective will gun laws be when the unrestricted legal answer is just a state away? State gun laws are only as strong as their most lax counterpart.
     
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Jan 10, 2013, 01:59 PM
 
Originally Posted by raleur View Post
Well put!

There is a belief, commonly held among those who really don't understand U.S. law, that the second amendment exists to empower the average American citizen against the tyranny of his own government.

It's not true.

This particular argument was invented long after the Bill of Rights was written.

A quick review of history, in particular of Shay's Rebellion (1786) and George Washington's reaction to it, which greatly influenced the Constitutional Convention, will explain what they meant by a well-armed militia. Washington himself led state militias in 1794 to put down the Whiskey Rebellion.

The Second Amendment was written in order to promote the security of the young country by putting down revolution, not promoting it.

And, of course, there are all those other words in the Constitution.

• if the second amendment were intended to allow us to revolt, why does Article 3, Section 3 include "levying war" against the United States as one of the definitions of treason?

• Why does Article 4, Section 4 guarantee that the Federal Government will protect every state of the union "against domestic violence"?

In fact, the Supreme Court's most conservative members have ruled that the Federal Government can restrict gun ownership, especially the kinds of weapons that would be necessary to fight a modern revolution.

Put simply, it is counter-intuitive, ahistorical, and completely out of context to argue that we have guns in order to protect us from our own government.

Nevertheless, regardless of how dumb the argument is, the language remains, and therefore we must contend with the reality that Americans have a right to own guns.
You're splitting hairs. The amendment was included to empower the citizenry.

I'd like to see each and every member of congress supporting these gun bans have their security details disarmed and rearmed in accordance with the laws we have to abide by. Why should their right to protection be greater than an average citizen's?
     
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Jan 10, 2013, 05:25 PM
 
Originally Posted by Snow-i View Post
You're splitting hairs. The amendment was included to empower the citizenry.

I'd like to see each and every member of congress supporting these gun bans have their security details disarmed and rearmed in accordance with the laws we have to abide by. Why should their right to protection be greater than an average citizen's?
Correct. Since none of us knows what the future may hold, we should own what we feel we need, short of actual WMD. That doesn't mean we can carry them around everywhere, though. Carrying a handgun when you're certified for its use? Fine. Carrying a high-powered rifle? Uh, no.
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Jan 10, 2013, 06:54 PM
 
Originally Posted by Snow-i View Post
Why should their right to protection be greater than an average citizen's?
I'd have to say because the odds of them being target for assassination are several orders of magnitude higher.
I have plenty of more important things to do, if only I could bring myself to do them....
     
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Jan 10, 2013, 06:56 PM
 
Originally Posted by Shaddim View Post
Carrying a handgun when you're certified for its use? Fine. Carrying a high-powered rifle? Uh, no.
Strangely, I think I'd be less worried about someone carrying a rifle than a handgun. Assuming they aren't pointing it at me of course.
If you're carrying a rifle, you're probably going hunting. If you're carrying a handgun, you could be a cop, a bank robber, a hit man or a gun nut.
I have plenty of more important things to do, if only I could bring myself to do them....
     
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Jan 10, 2013, 07:05 PM
 
Originally Posted by Waragainstsleep View Post
Strangely, I think I'd be less worried about someone carrying a rifle than a handgun. Assuming they aren't pointing it at me of course.
If you're carrying a rifle, you're probably going hunting. If you're carrying a handgun, you could be a cop, a bank robber, a hit man or a gun nut.
That's because you aren't accustomed to seeing anyone with a gun. Seeing someone walking around with an unsecured rifle in public would make my alarm bells go off and I'd call the cops.
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Jan 10, 2013, 07:42 PM
 
What evidence is there that security for congress wouldn't follow the proposed ban?
     
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Jan 10, 2013, 09:29 PM
 
Originally Posted by Snow-i View Post
You're splitting hairs. The amendment was included to empower the citizenry.
If that is true, then you should be able to state what, exactly, it empowers them to do.

You can begin by answering the questions I raise. I'll repeat them for simplicity's sake:

• if the second amendment were intended to allow us to revolt, why does Article 3, Section 3 include "levying war" against the United States as one of the definitions of treason?

• Why does Article 4, Section 4 guarantee that the Federal Government will protect every state of the union "against domestic violence"?

• Why does the Supreme Court admit that there is no problem with forbidding the types of weapons one would need to revolt?

The answer is simple: yes, American citizens have the right to own firearms, but this is not, never was, in order to protect themselves against the government.
     
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Jan 10, 2013, 09:42 PM
 
Originally Posted by Shaddim View Post
Correct. Since none of us knows what the future may hold, we should own what we feel we need, short of actual WMD.
Why draw such an arbitrary limit? Especially since you suggest elsewhere that we may be in a full-scale civil war or under threat of invasion very soon.

Originally Posted by Shaddim View Post
That doesn't mean we can carry them around everywhere, though. Carrying a handgun when you're certified for its use? Fine. Carrying a high-powered rifle? Uh, no.
Why not? Certainly you can't be arguing this on legal grounds, given your willingness to toss them out in the previous sentence.
     
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Jan 11, 2013, 12:47 AM
 
Originally Posted by raleur View Post
Well put!
Thanks raleur!

There is a belief, commonly held among those who really don't understand U.S. law, that the second amendment exists to empower the average American citizen against the tyranny of his own government.

It's not true.

This particular argument was invented long after the Bill of Rights was written.
Good point. The above was certainly a hasty way for me to have put it. To garner passage of the Constitution, a series of safeguards to individual liberties had to be added to it, including the right of the people to keep and bear arms.

"A bill of rights is what the people are entitled to against every government on earth." ~ Thomas Jefferson 1787
  • "What, Sir, is the use of a militia? It is to prevent the establishment of a standing army, the bane of liberty.... Whenever Governments mean to invade the rights and liberties of the people, they always attempt to destroy the militia, in order to raise an army upon their ruins." ~ Rep. Elbridge Gerry of Massachusetts, arguing in floor debate over the Second Amendment [I Annals of Congress at 750 {August 17, 1789}]
  • "Before a standing army can rule, the people must be disarmed; as they are in almost every kingdom in Europe. The supreme power in America cannot enforce unjust laws by the sword; because the whole body of the people are armed, and constitute a force superior to any band of regular troops that can be, on any pretense, raised in the United States. A military force, at the command of Congress, can execute no laws, but such as the people perceive to be just and constitutional; for they will possess the power, and jealousy will instantly inspire the inclination, to resist the execution of a law which appears to them unjust and oppressive." ~ Noah Webster 1787

A quick review of history, in particular of Shay's Rebellion (1786) and George Washington's reaction to it, which greatly influenced the Constitutional Convention, will explain what they meant by a well-armed militia. Washington himself led state militias in 1794 to put down the Whiskey Rebellion.
Crudely, all able-bodied men were considered militia and were not only granted the right to keep and bear arms in the Bill of Rights (necessary for ratification), but were expected to in the Virginia delegate prior for example. As such, the people were the militia. The fact that they could be culled into a formidable opponent of insurrection and to protect the rights and liberties of their respective State against any hostile element up to and including a standing army does not preclude the right of the people to keep and bear arms. Arms were an integral part of society at all levels, for the most obvious reasons.

The Second Amendment was written in order to promote the security of the young country by putting down revolution, not promoting it.
Revolution and treason can be arbitrary. I'll explain...

And, of course, there are all those other words in the Constitution.

• if the second amendment were intended to allow us to revolt, why does Article 3, Section 3 include "levying war" against the United States as one of the definitions of treason?

• Why does Article 4, Section 4 guarantee that the Federal Government will protect every state of the union "against domestic violence"?
They essentially are just "other words of the Constitution" without regard for the overarching fact that the Federal Government serves at the consent of and in the public trust. When it does not, definitions of treason will vary and perhaps a deeper review of history would show that (not unlike rebels in Shay's Rebellion for example) those supposedly guilty of it were rarely charged and imprisoned. After all, finding folks guilty of treason becomes less important than averting civil war. The Federal Government cannot protect every state of the union "against domestic violence", particularly as poorly outfitted as it was; it would be the people who would be the arbiters of treason and determine how to address hostility of any sort up to and including standing armies. And of course, neither of the above Articles preclude the right of people to keep and bear arms.

In fact, the Supreme Court's most conservative members have ruled that the Federal Government can restrict gun ownership, especially the kinds of weapons that would be necessary to fight a modern revolution.
The SCOTUS basically kicked gun control and subsequent definitions of "weapons necessary to fight a modern revolution" back to the States, but Federal law maintains the right of people to keep and bear arms, affirmed twice in the past 5 years.

Put simply, it is counter-intuitive, ahistorical, and completely out of context to argue that we have guns in order to protect us from our own government.
Article XVII of the Massachusetts Constitution of 1780 -- The people have a right to keep and to bear arms for the common defence. And as in time of peace armies are dangerous to liberty, they ought not to be maintained without the consent of the legislature; and the military power shall always be held in an exact subordination to the civil authority, and be governed by it.

Nevertheless, regardless of how dumb the argument is, the language remains, and therefore we must contend with the reality that Americans have a right to own guns.
Americans have any number of rights and freedoms that pose a risk to the collective, but eliminating them is not my preferred solution.
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Jan 11, 2013, 08:51 AM
 
Originally Posted by raleur View Post
If that is true, then you should be able to state what, exactly, it empowers them to do.

You can begin by answering the questions I raise. I'll repeat them for simplicity's sake:

• if the second amendment were intended to allow us to revolt, why does Article 3, Section 3 include "levying war" against the United States as one of the definitions of treason?

• Why does Article 4, Section 4 guarantee that the Federal Government will protect every state of the union "against domestic violence"?

• Why does the Supreme Court admit that there is no problem with forbidding the types of weapons one would need to revolt?

The answer is simple: yes, American citizens have the right to own firearms, but this is not, never was, in order to protect themselves against the government.
Well, amendments by definition contradict parts of the (previous) constitution, that's the whole point of amendments. So if there is a conflict then it's logical to believe that the (most recent) amendment would be prioritized.
     
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Jan 11, 2013, 10:20 AM
 
Originally Posted by Waragainstsleep View Post
I'd have to say because the odds of them being target for assassination are several orders of magnitude higher.
So? The odds of another spree killing of 20 kids is much lower than the odds of me being murdered. Yet here we are.
     
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Jan 11, 2013, 10:21 AM
 
Originally Posted by Uncle Skeleton View Post
What evidence is there that security for congress wouldn't follow the proposed ban?
Really? These guys run around in SUVs with minigun turrets on the top. Pretty sure I'd have an issue obtaining one of those.
     
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Jan 11, 2013, 10:30 AM
 
Originally Posted by raleur View Post
If that is true, then you should be able to state what, exactly, it empowers them to do.

You can begin by answering the questions I raise. I'll repeat them for simplicity's sake:

• if the second amendment were intended to allow us to revolt, why does Article 3, Section 3 include "levying war" against the United States as one of the definitions of treason?
Because should the government toss aside the constitution (including the 2nd amendment), that section is pretty much off the table anyways, isn't it?

• Why does Article 4, Section 4 guarantee that the Federal Government will protect every state of the union "against domestic violence"?
Notice how it doesn't say every person? Just every state? Do you fail to see the distinction there?

• Why does the Supreme Court admit that there is no problem with forbidding the types of weapons one would need to revolt?
Did you even read the decision what you cited? Here's a small excerpt. Emphasis mine.

" The Antifederalists feared that the Federal Government would disarm the people in order to disable this citizens’ militia, enabling a politicized standing army or a select militia to rule. The response was to deny Congress power to abridge the ancient right of individuals to keep and bear arms, so that the ideal of a citizens’ militia would be preserved. Pp. 22–28."
The answer is simple: yes, American citizens have the right to own firearms, but this is not, never was, in order to protect themselves against the government.
Which government? The one outlined in the constitution or the abomination that we are on a path to becoming?
     
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Jan 11, 2013, 10:48 AM
 
Originally Posted by Snow-i View Post
Really? These guys run around in SUVs with minigun turrets on the top.
They do? Do you have a link for that?
     
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Jan 11, 2013, 11:19 AM
 
Originally Posted by Waragainstsleep View Post
I'd have to say because the odds of them being target for assassination are several orders of magnitude higher.
Perhaps if they weren't tyrants they wouldn't NEED the protection so much.

Why did the FedGov buy 1 billion rounds on ammo this fall? Preparing for a nationwide ammo ban?
     
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Jan 11, 2013, 11:33 AM
 
My Safari tab has abbreviated the title of this thread to "Why do people need ass..."

Just FYI.
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Jan 11, 2013, 12:45 PM
 
Originally Posted by Uncle Skeleton View Post
They do? Do you have a link for that?
I was in DC to see the christmas tree (i live in Annapolis, MD). One was parked (with the turret not raised) just outside the metro station alongside two other turretless SUVs. This was the wednesday before xmas. You will see them around town, especially in the presidential motorcade.

Take a look at the youtube video to see one in live fire testing.

There aren't going to be any official articles with this kind of information, but here's a few links.

Presidential SUV Machine Gun Pops Up, Fills the Air With Lead
Secret Service MINI GUN SUV - YouTube
Pop goes the presidential SUV | Military Tech - CNET News
Presidential Motorcade Packs Serious Firepower | Autopia | Wired.com

You can go to DC and find them parked outside of important buildings secure garages (usually with a guard no more than 20 feet away) or as part of the presidential motorcade.

With the number of Secret Service agents that live around here, its not exactly a secret about them either.

EDIT: At the time, there were also "plain clothes" non descript cars and trucks driving on restricted roads directly on front of the white house with clearly visible M4a1s mounted in the center rack. Dudes with long guns (it was dark and hard to see) were walking the white house lawn with flashlights that night.
( Last edited by Snow-i; Jan 11, 2013 at 12:58 PM. )
     
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Jan 11, 2013, 01:17 PM
 
So just the secret service guarding the president (and party (I mean group, not the Democratic party)), not for congress?
     
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Jan 11, 2013, 01:55 PM
 
Originally Posted by Uncle Skeleton View Post
So just the secret service guarding the president (and party (I mean group, not the Democratic party)), not for congress?
Again, this information is not available to the public, but the anecdotal evidence suggests they are deployed across the Secret Service. Either way, my original point remains.

I have several acquaintances and friends' families that are secret service, including one counter-sniper. You best believe the guns he is using are not available to you or I.

I would extend this point to health care as well. Not a single Congressman will abide by "ObamaCare" and will continue to vote themselves the best plans available that you or I would have trouble obtaining without being well above the "1%" threshold. I have no problem with this except when they consider removing my rights up to and including my status as the "master of my domain." My house and my family are mine to care for, not the government's. I do not expect them to care about me personally, which makes it my responsibility to make the best choices for me and my loved ones. Owning and properly maintaining firearms is part of this, and I hold in the highest contempt for some suit in some office miles away with a plethora of armed security telling me I cannot own a firearm that I deem suitable to protect my domain. I don't need a truck with a minigun to reach this end, but I do believe that in case of a natural disaster, economic collapse, single-instance home invasion, or corruption of government that I should have access to a tool that could greatly benefit my "domain" in such an instance.

Why should the police be armed for self-defense without me being afforded the same right in my own home?
Elected officials? Why are they more valuable than I am?
( Last edited by Snow-i; Jan 11, 2013 at 02:07 PM. Reason: expanded post.)
     
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Jan 11, 2013, 03:09 PM
 
Originally Posted by Snow-i View Post
Again, this information is not available to the public, but the anecdotal evidence suggests they are deployed across the Secret Service.
The secret service doesn't protect congressmen, does it?

Either way, my original point remains.
I don't think it does. When you first said it I was on your side thinking "the president getting special treatment is one thing, but congress is who makes the laws so they should have to eat their own dogfood."

I have several acquaintances and friends' families that are secret service, including one counter-sniper. You best believe the guns he is using are not available to you or I.
How about you stop moving the goalposts. Is this about presidential security or congressional security? I think there's a difference between what's expected of each of those, and I don't think my opinion on that is out of the ordinary.

I have no problem with this except when they consider removing my rights up to and including my status as the "master of my domain." My house and my family are mine to care for, not the government's. I do not expect them to care about me personally, which makes it my responsibility to make the best choices for me and my loved ones. Owning and properly maintaining firearms is part of this, and I hold in the highest contempt for some suit in some office miles away with a plethora of armed security telling me I cannot own a firearm that I deem suitable to protect my domain. I don't need a truck with a minigun to reach this end, but I do believe that in case of a natural disaster, economic collapse, single-instance home invasion, or corruption of government that I should have access to a tool that could greatly benefit my "domain" in such an instance.
If members of congress get to bypass their own laws, that would be wrong. That's like Animal Farm obvious. But you have to establish that they're actually doing that first (or allowed themselves to do it legally).

Why should the police be armed for self-defense without me being afforded the same right in my own home?
Elected officials? Why are they more valuable than I am?
Elected officials (besides the president/family), yes. But a good case can be made that police need to break the law in order to enforce it. They won't catch any speeders if they have to stay below the speed limit while doing it.
     
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Jan 11, 2013, 03:51 PM
 
Originally Posted by Uncle Skeleton View Post
What about the rights to life, liberty and property (John Locke)?
Good luck with those if you lose the right to defend yourself. I think the folks who set up the country understood that free speech and self-defense were necessary, but not sufficient, for those three.
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