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You are here: MacNN Forums > Community > MacNN Lounge > Political/War Lounge > Texas Church Shooting: Forget Prayers, Send More Guns: Or else, Tryanny?

Texas Church Shooting: Forget Prayers, Send More Guns: Or else, Tryanny?
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The Final Dakar
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Nov 5, 2017, 08:19 PM
 
     
The Final Dakar  (op)
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Nov 5, 2017, 08:27 PM
 
Deadliest mass shootings in modern US history —>

Las Vegas, Oct 2017: 58 dead
Orlando, June 2016: 49 dead
Virginia Tech, Apr 2007: 32 dead
Sandy Hook, Dec 2012: 27 dead
Texas church, Nov 2017: 26 dead
Five most deadly shootings have all come in the past 10 years.
     
reader50
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Nov 5, 2017, 09:03 PM
 
I agree, it must be the Millennials entering the work force.

Or people are increasingly disgruntled by a government that is unresponsive to them. Like unaddressed income inequality, and runaway education debt.
     
Waragainstsleep
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Nov 5, 2017, 09:19 PM
 
In the Judge Dredd comics, the judges had a code for what they called "Future Shock", sufferers being referred to as "Futsies". Simply put it was a mental breakdown characterised by extreme violence, brought on by stress and the inability to cope with rapid changes in society.

I believe the authors intended it to refer to changes in technology but it seems to be coming true in a more socio-political context.
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Nov 5, 2017, 09:36 PM
 
Local eneded the rampage by grabbing his own rifle.

https://news.grabien.com/story-texas...-killer-ending
Today's mass shooting in Sutherland Springs, Texas, was only halted after an armed Texan "engaged" the killer and put an end to the rampage, the Texas Rangers reported.
Freeman Martin, a major in the Texas Rangers and a spokesman for the Texas Department of Public Safety, says the suspect dropped his rifle and fled after being confronted by a local man who had grabbed his rifle.
"The blood of the martyrs is the seed of the church" Saint Tertullian, 197 AD
     
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Nov 5, 2017, 09:51 PM
 
Originally Posted by reader50 View Post
I agree, it must be the Millennials entering the work force.

Or people are increasingly disgruntled by a government that is unresponsive to them. Like unaddressed income inequality, and runaway education debt.
Maybe let's not try and oversimplify it, especially in a way that conveniently falls in line with our political beliefs.
     
Laminar
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Nov 5, 2017, 09:52 PM
 
Originally Posted by Chongo View Post
Local eneded the rampage by grabbing his own rifle.

https://news.grabien.com/story-texas...-killer-ending
Never mind the more than two dozen people that lost their lives because of the US's screwed up gun culture, let's focus on how our fantastic gun culture saved the day!

As an aside, if I had to pick one place in the entire US that I would be guaranteed to find a whole lot of armed civilians, it would 100% be a Texas church.
     
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Nov 5, 2017, 10:18 PM
 
Originally Posted by Laminar View Post
Maybe let's not try and oversimplify it, especially in a way that conveniently falls in line with our political beliefs.
Fair enough. Especially since we have no clue what motivated the Las Vegas shooter. Last I heard, the FBI was grasping at straws, posting freeway billboards for anyone with a clue to call in.

btw, it occurred to me the US population has been slowly growing. If the shooting incidents were adjusted vs the population size, the last decade might not be as prominent.
     
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Nov 5, 2017, 10:54 PM
 
That's one way to rationalize it.
     
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Nov 5, 2017, 10:56 PM
 
Originally Posted by reader50 View Post
btw, it occurred to me the US population has been slowly growing. If the shooting incidents were adjusted vs the population size, the last decade might not be as prominent.
It's still wildly disproportionate if compared to other countries, including countries that have a relatively high level of gun ownership among the general population.
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Nov 6, 2017, 12:04 AM
 
The other countries with high levels of gun ownership - are all of them much smaller than the US population? We're an outlier in gun violence, not counting weird places like most of the middle east. But we're also the 3rd largest country in the world. The bigger the group considered, the more unlikely incidents will be included.

My impression is of the large countries, only the US has significant gun ownership per person. The Top 10 countries by population: (2015, wikipedia)

1. China (1,376 million)
2. India (1,311 million)
3. USA (322 million)
4. Indonesia (258 million)
5. Brazil (208 million)
6. Pakistan (189 million)
7. Nigeria (182 million)
8. Bangladesh (161 million)
9. Russia (146 million)
10. Mexico (127 million)

I'm having trouble believing any of the other 9 have significant gun ownership. They suffer from poverty and/or restrictive governments. Maybe Pakistan encourages private gun ownership in case India comes calling, but I'm not seeing it for the others. Which means the US population size makes us at least 3x more likely to have violent incidents than any country not on the list, and probably more likely than that.
     
Laminar
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Nov 6, 2017, 12:12 AM
 
That's why events are listed per capita.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_o...ted_death_rate
     
reader50
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Nov 6, 2017, 12:40 AM
 
So we're not such an outlier - 10 countries have higher gun deaths per 100,000. Mostly due to higher (or far higher) homicide rates.

ps - don't move to Honduras. They know what to do with people they don't like.
     
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Nov 6, 2017, 12:50 AM
 
Originally Posted by reader50 View Post
The other countries with high levels of gun ownership - are all of them much smaller than the US population? We're an outlier in gun violence, not counting weird places like most of the middle east. But we're also the 3rd largest country in the world. The bigger the group considered, the more unlikely incidents will be included.
Of course, I meant civilian guns per capita, not total number of guns and incidents per 100,000 people. The trend is that fewer and fewer households in the US own more and more guns.
Originally Posted by reader50 View Post
I'm having trouble believing any of the other 9 have significant gun ownership.
The US leads the pack with 101, followed by Serbia (58) and Yemen (55). Then there is a big group of countries with 30~35 guns per capita, and that includes Austria, Germany, France, Norway, Finland, Canada and Iraq. Switzerland lies lower (24), but if you factor in military rifles (that citizens up to a certain age are required to have at home to maintain military readiness) they have more than that. I reckon similar things hold for e. g. Israel.

Gun related deaths correlate very strongly with gun ownership:


Most countries lie roughly on a line, but there are notable positive outliers such as Chile, Sweden, Norway, Iceland and Germany, and negative outliers, first and foremost Mexico (for obvious reasons), but also Canada and Switzerland. However, it is worth noting that a very significant share of gun related deaths in Switzerland are suicides. If you just look at homicides, the US's overrepresentation is even more pronounced. According to the statistics I remember (sorry, I'm on lunch break, but I'm willing to dig deeper tonight if you want), these correlations also hold between, e. g. all suicides (independent of method) and homicides.

IMHO mass shootings are just the most visible consequence of the US's high gun ownership rate, because suicides don't get that much attention and unreported crimes (e. g. a man intimidating a wife or girlfriend with a gun). And another thing receives very little attention: most of the people who shoot to kill (either themselves or others) are men.
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Nov 6, 2017, 12:53 AM
 
Originally Posted by reader50 View Post
So we're not such an outlier - 10 countries have higher gun deaths per 100,000. Mostly due to higher (or far higher) homicide rates.
I think you should compare the US to other developed nations, not failed nations that are dominated by drug cultivation, production and export.
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Nov 6, 2017, 01:12 AM
 
Even I'm starting to think that America's attitude to guns is as dangerous as the prevalence of them.
I have plenty of more important things to do, if only I could bring myself to do them....
     
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Nov 6, 2017, 01:36 AM
 
Originally Posted by Waragainstsleep View Post
Even I'm starting to think that America's attitude to guns is as dangerous as the prevalence of them.
Bingo, it's a cultural problem that isn't yet perceived as such. (I always have to think of my father's host brother visiting him in Germany in the mid-1970s: he was a police officer, later police commissioner of a very large city in Minnesota, and he came with his gun and his badge. My father, a lawyer, had to explain to him that this doesn't fly and he could get into serious trouble.)

We can argue whether gun culture has changed for the worse (an every smaller share of the households stockpile more and more guns) or whether the gun culture no longer fits the times. But the culture around guns in America needs to change. Or, at the very least, Americans need to be honest to themselves and be ok with disproportionately high homicide and suicide rates, that it is a worthwhile trade-off for whatever (perceived) liberty they would like to have.

Unfortunately, because the NRA morphed from an association of responsible gun owners to the lobby arm of the gun manufacturers, you neither have changes in culture and laws that are tackled in cooperation with gun owners nor much nuance in between the poles of “abolishing all guns” or “everything goes”. The data is quite clear: the number of guns must be reduced, and that takes, well, many decades. There will be no quick fix, no single measure that magically solves the problem.
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Nov 6, 2017, 01:46 AM
 
Originally Posted by Waragainstsleep View Post
Even I'm starting to think that America's attitude to guns is as dangerous as the prevalence of them.
I've heard the UK loves surveillance cameras rather than guns. To the point they're even installed in school bathrooms. I submit that a national love of guns is better. At least they're in the hands of citizens, rather than big brother (faceless gov organizations).

The guns have uses like self defense / home defense / family defense. But their most important use is a last-ditch citizen ability to retake our government should it no longer be ours. And at present, our government is the least responsive it's been in living memory.

The best I can say is the people at the top are obsessed with greed rather than control. Small comfort, they'd rather have our money than our freedoms.

But every time a nutjob commits a crime with a gun, some people call for punishing the rest of us by removing a right. The rest of us have one thing in common - we didn't do it. I have never held up a liquor store, killed (or even shot at) a person, or faked a fire drill. Might have shoplifted a candy or two from a 99cent store when very young - I can't remember for sure.

If we let them take our guns, we'll be in the same boat as the UK citizens subjects, relying on surveillance cameras to stop the government from doing stupid things ... um, turning on us .... say, how do those restrain the government? What is your final answer to stop a repressive government?
     
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Nov 6, 2017, 02:05 AM
 
Originally Posted by reader50 View Post
I've heard the UK loves surveillance cameras rather than guns. To the point they're even installed in school bathrooms. I submit that a national love of guns is better. At least they're in the hands of citizens, rather than big brother (faceless gov organizations).
Well, what's the difference between the UK's love for CCTV and the US's love for global warrantless mass surveillance? I know it is not exactly the same thing, but they are similar in that both are massive infringements on your privacy. I'd argue the second is much worse.
Originally Posted by reader50 View Post
The guns have uses like self defense / home defense / family defense. But their most important use is a last-ditch citizen ability to retake our government should it no longer be ours. And at present, our government is the least responsive it's been in living memory.
I think it is important to separate two things: first of all is the claim that “(more) guns make us safer (from crime, mass shootings, etc.)” and similar claims related to actual data. The second questions is whether for, say, philosophical reasons, this is a worthwhile tradeoff.

A lot of the time, gun advocates do not share the same set of facts as the rest of the population, and thus, you can't even have an intelligent debate.
Originally Posted by reader50 View Post
But every time a nutjob commits a crime with a gun, some people call for punishing the rest of us by removing a right. The rest of us have one thing in common - we didn't do it. I have never held up a liquor store, killed (or even shot at) a person, or faked a fire drill.
You seem to imply that the only possible reaction is to completely forbid all guns and have the government confiscate them. Let us assume a series of legal and cultural changes lead to a reduction in civil guns per capita from currently 1.01 to 0.3 (which is the rate in Canada and many European countries). Under these laws, you can get a gun, but it is a privilege that comes with responsibilities. If you lose your gun, you are obliged to report it to the police. You have to take mandatory lessons and show that you store your guns responsibly. And so forth. We can discuss whether it should be as hard as obtaining a driver's license or a pilot's license or somewhere in between.
Originally Posted by reader50 View Post
If we let them take our guns, we'll be in the same boat as the UK citizens subjects, relying on surveillance cameras to stop the government from doing stupid things ... um, turning on us .... say, how do those restrain the government? What is your final answer to stop a repressive government?
In the information age, people are not repressed with guns, but with information. You can see that right now where a sizable share of the population is manipulated with fake news. (And no, I am not talking about “the MSM”, but real fake news as in “Hillary Clinton runs a child sex ring from a pizza parlor” fake news.)

Plus, ever since the late 19th and early 20th century, the weapons available to governments are far, far more powerful than what individuals can have. That was very different from the way it used to be when the US was founded. As long as US troops are willing to shoot on fellow citizens, the fact that people are armed won't matter.
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Nov 6, 2017, 02:20 AM
 
Originally Posted by OreoCookie View Post
Well, what's the difference between the UK's love for CCTV and the US's love for global warrantless mass surveillance?
My comment was more aimed at WAS - the cameras aren't a substitute in most countries. And I agree both types of snooping are violations that should not happen. We shouldn't be surveilling civilian populations at all, only targeted surveillance. And I don't mean Angela's cell phone, or industrial targets to get a leg up economically.

Originally Posted by OreoCookie View Post
You seem to imply that the only possible reaction is to completely forbid all guns and have the government confiscate them. Let us assume a series of legal and cultural changes lead to a reduction in civil guns per capita from currently 1.01 to 0.3 (which is the rate in Canada and many European countries). Under these laws, you can get a gun, but it is a privilege that comes with responsibilities. If you lose your gun, you are obliged to report it to the police. You have to take mandatory lessons and show that you store your guns responsibly. And so forth. We can discuss whether it should be as hard as obtaining a driver's license or a pilot's license or somewhere in between.
What you describe creates barriers by default, where one must prove (to a government agency, no less) that they be allowed. As well as a target that most people not be allowed. But at present, the ability to own a gun is a right. It would require a Constitutional amendment to strip away that right. ie - a reduction in individual freedom, almost universally applied to the innocent. I do not expect this to happen, nor does it appear fair. Punishing everyone for the crimes of a few.

Originally Posted by OreoCookie View Post
Plus, ever since the late 19th and early 20th century, the weapons available to governments are far, far more powerful than what individuals can have. That was very different from the way it used to be when the US was founded. As long as US troops are willing to shoot on fellow citizens, the fact that people are armed won't matter.
This is a problem. Nor do I have an answer. Personally, I suspect we should accept the occasional tragedy as a price of keeping a safety valve. Even if it might not fully work, it is better than the nothing many other countries have. Where they hope for outside intervention should their government completely turn.
     
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Nov 6, 2017, 02:43 AM
 
Originally Posted by reader50 View Post
What you describe creates barriers by default, where one must prove (to a government agency, no less) that they be allowed. As well as a target that most people not be allowed. But at present, the ability to own a gun is a right. It would require a Constitutional amendment to strip away that right. ie - a reduction in individual freedom, almost universally applied to the innocent. I do not expect this to happen, nor does it appear fair.
Honestly, the way the situation is now, I think it is entirely fair and you should thank the gun lobby for that. Gun owners should break free of the yoke, but they haven't and I cannot foresee a future where they will. This artificially reduces the choices to no regulation at all and repealing the Second Amendment.
Originally Posted by reader50 View Post
Punishing everyone for the crimes of a few.
Your turn of phrase is quite revealing: reducing the number of guns is not meant as a punishment of lawful gun owners, the purpose is to make society safer. Perhaps you are a gun owner, and you feel punished in the process, but that is not the intention.
Originally Posted by reader50 View Post
This is a problem. Nor do I have an answer. Personally, I suspect we should accept the occasional tragedy as a price of keeping a safety valve. Even if it might not fully work, it is better than the nothing many other countries have. Where they hope for outside intervention should their government completely turn.
Times have changed. Guns aren't what sends a shiver down a state's spine, it is information. That is why all of the authoritarian regimes and dictatorship clamp down on information. Information is what makes the difference between a few tens of people staging a protest and a mass movement à la Arab spring. When the Second Amendment was written, the fastest means of distributing information was by horse. Weapons are weak, they only become useful after sh*t has hit the fan. Exchange of ideas is infinitely more important, it can bring people together (in opposition to or in support of ideas), and it can prevent civil war in the first place.

I think the Second Amendment is the wrong focal point of debate in the US, and I wish half as much energy was spent protecting the First and Fourth Amendments which are infinitely more important for a healthy democracy.
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Nov 6, 2017, 03:22 AM
 
Originally Posted by reader50 View Post
So we're not such an outlier - 10 countries have higher gun deaths per 100,000. Mostly due to higher (or far higher) homicide rates.
Really? That's what you took from the article? Sort by homicides then go down that list and find a country where you'd be comfortable raising your family. There's a biiiiig gap between the US and the next country I'd do.
     
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Nov 6, 2017, 03:27 AM
 
Originally Posted by OreoCookie View Post
Plus, ever since the late 19th and early 20th century, the weapons available to governments are far, far more powerful than what individuals can have. That was very different from the way it used to be when the US was founded. As long as US troops are willing to shoot on fellow citizens, the fact that people are armed won't matter.
Let us postulate (arbitrary) tyrannical goal X.

Consider the following two scenarios.

1) For the government to achieve X, they need to command US troops to shoot their fellow citizens.

2) For the government to achieve X, they don't need to command US troops to shoot their citizens.

Under which scenario would you predict the eventual occurrence of X to be more likely?
     
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Nov 6, 2017, 03:28 AM
 
Originally Posted by reader50 View Post
The guns have uses like self defense / home defense / family defense.
But why not address the reasons that you need self/home/family defense?

But their most important use is a last-ditch citizen ability to retake our government should it no longer be ours. And at present, our government is the least responsive it's been in living memory.
Sorry, if the government wants you dead, you'll be dead before you see, hear, or feel a thing. Your concealed carry permit won't do shit about that. If you're actually concerned about a tyrannical government, I hope you're building a secret bunker out of the view of spy satellites, you don't have a cell phone or any other internet connected device, and you're stocking up on mines, RPGs, and tanks.

But every time a nutjob commits a crime with a gun, some people call for punishing the rest of us by removing a right. The rest of us have one thing in common - we didn't do it. I have never held up a liquor store, killed (or even shot at) a person, or faked a fire drill. Might have shoplifted a candy or two from a 99cent store when very young - I can't remember for sure.
And those of us that have the properly maintained vehicles, proper training, and proper physical reflexes to safely drive at 100mph are punished every time we hop on the interstate and are stuck doing 70. You can play the victim card, but don't pretend you're not trading the lives of little kids over your own misplaced comfort.

If we let them take our guns,
Yeah no one is suggesting that.
     
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Nov 6, 2017, 03:37 AM
 
Originally Posted by subego View Post
Let us postulate (arbitrary) tyrannical goal X.

Consider the following two scenarios.

1) For the government to achieve X, they need to command US troops to shoot their fellow citizens.

2) For the government to achieve X, they don't need to command US troops to shoot their citizens.

Under which scenario would you predict the eventual occurrence of X to be more likely?
Why do you assume these are the only two options? If the population doesn't support the government's actions, can organize and part of the army defects as a result, the the people will have a much larger chances of success. You don't win a war against your own army, you need to win over the army — with sympathy, not guns. Look at what happened in the Middle East as a result of the Arab Spring. It was the story of a single street vendor who lit himself on fire in protest that sparked it all.
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Nov 6, 2017, 03:44 AM
 
Originally Posted by subego View Post
Let us postulate (arbitrary) tyrannical goal X.

Consider the following two scenarios.

1) For the government to achieve X, they need to command US troops to shoot their fellow citizens.

2) For the government to achieve X, they don't need to command US troops to shoot their citizens.

Under which scenario would you predict the eventual occurrence of X to be more likely?
Paint the target as an enemy of the state, and why would the soldier say no?

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bonus_...olice_shooting

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Battle...ountain#Battle

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Intern...nese_Americans

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Little...Guard_blockade

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kent_S...onday.2C_May_4

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/1992_L...hs_and_arrests

The US Military has no issue firing on American civilians. The citizens don't even need to be armed for the military to decide that the citizens need to be shot.
     
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Nov 6, 2017, 05:23 AM
 
I'm not questioning whether soldiers will fire on civilians, I'm assuming they will. Likewise, no one would need be painted as enemies of the state, people engaging in armed rebellion are self-defined as such.

I struggled a bit with the question I put at the end of the scenarios, and upon reflection I'm not particularly happy with it. The idea I'm trying to get across is aren't the two scenarios different in substantive ways? All those substantive ways having a negative (and thus beneficial) effect on X?

Effects implied by my original question, such as the impact it would have on X happening in the first place, or if X did occur, differences due to having to respond with a technological force equalizer versus not having to do a goddamn thing. Collateral damage (with attendant effect on morale) in a strict military sense, as well as probable resentment inducing, further restrictions on the public.
     
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Nov 6, 2017, 05:50 AM
 
Will not the stability of a tyrannical government be substantively affected by its citizens possessing the means to become a terrorist?
     
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Nov 6, 2017, 06:16 AM
 
Originally Posted by subego View Post
Will not the stability of a tyrannical government be substantively affected by its citizens possessing the means to become a terrorist?
Guns are an outdated compared to speech and much weaker than information and communication.

You have the means to become a terrorist without owning a gun. What does more damage: a dangerous idea with popular support or a few people with guns, fitness and training to use them? Or shutting down a water waste plant by hacking it compared to shooting some rando in the street before being shot yourself?

The American Constitution was state of the art in the 18th century, informed by what was their reality back then (including technology, culture and values). Progress has significantly moved the bar here.
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Nov 6, 2017, 08:26 AM
 
Originally Posted by subego View Post
I'm not questioning whether soldiers will fire on civilians, I'm assuming they will. Likewise, no one would need be painted as enemies of the state, people engaging in armed rebellion are self-defined as such.
In any genuinely plausible scenario which comes first, the armed rebellion or the military shooting civilians?
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Nov 6, 2017, 09:17 AM
 
Originally Posted by reader50 View Post
I've heard the UK loves surveillance cameras rather than guns. To the point they're even installed in school bathrooms. I submit that a national love of guns is better. At least they're in the hands of citizens, rather than big brother (faceless gov organizations).
This is a really weird answer. I'm not sure you understood my point.
The UK doesn't love surveillance cameras. We tolerate them. I'm not a parent and while I might take issue as a pupil being watched all the time its easy to see why this has occurred. The cameras are in classrooms to protect teachers and pupils from each other for the most part. The rest of them are likely about bullying because schools are in competition these days so they have to be seen to be protecting kids from bullying. Assuming they can't be sued if it manages to happen.

Americans on the other hand love guns. So much so they won't listen to reason on the subject or take sensible precautions. The attitude seems to be far too casual, keeping them in handbags and glove compartments and other places where very young children are able to frequently get a hold of them. Actively giving them to very very young children is another one for the list. Kids too young to possibly comprehend how much they should respect any loaded firearm they handle.
Its this haphazard and unceremonious approach that seems to leaf to a lot of the deaths that happen, though not the mass shooting obviously. I wonder how many spontaneous suicides and domestic violence deaths would be prevented if you had the same gun safe laws that we have.

Originally Posted by reader50 View Post
The guns have uses like self defense / home defense / family defense. But their most important use is a last-ditch citizen ability to retake our government should it no longer be ours. And at present, our government is the least responsive it's been in living memory.
The stats all say having guns in the house puts you and your family at greater risk of death or injury so defines of any kind as an argument is off the table. Its not related to the precious right either so this is a non issue.

Originally Posted by reader50 View Post
The best I can say is the people at the top are obsessed with greed rather than control. Small comfort, they'd rather have our money than our freedoms.
I'm not even sure how this relates to point even if you misunderstood it.

Originally Posted by reader50 View Post
But every time a nutjob commits a crime with a gun, some people call for punishing the rest of us by removing a right. The rest of us have one thing in common - we didn't do it. I have never held up a liquor store, killed (or even shot at) a person, or faked a fire drill. Might have shoplifted a candy or two from a 99cent store when very young - I can't remember for sure.
You seem to be getting less and less coherent. I don't get why you mention your criminal tendencies, they don't really seem relevant. No-one is a criminal until they are. Mass shooters in particular are people who have snapped. Something just goes wrong in their brain.

Originally Posted by reader50 View Post
If we let them take our guns, we'll be in the same boat as the UK citizens subjects, relying on surveillance cameras to stop the government from doing stupid things ... um, turning on us .... say, how do those restrain the government? What is your final answer to stop a repressive government?
As you mention your government is the least responsive its ever been. Not only that but your leader is installing loyal stooges to every office he can and firing people when they do stuff he doesn't like. He's hiding his own relationships with foreign powers and channelling public money into his own possession. He's even spoken of pardoning himself before he's been caught doing wrong. So many of these things are hallmarks of a dictator.
More worrying than that is his lack of shame. Almost every politician in the history of the developed, civilised world has had shame. Enough to resign under perceived pressure when a scandal breaks.
We know Trump objectifies women, particularly young ones and very likely his own daughter. We know he proudly commits sexual harassment and very likely is guilty of rape. We all strongly suspect there is a video tape somewhere of him indulging in waterspouts with Russian hookers. We know he steals from charities and takes credit for the work or donations of other people. We know he's a racist and that he often doesn't pay his bills, bankrupting small business owners. We know that despite moaning about it for years, he has taken more time off and spent more taxpayers money doing so in one year, than Obama did in 8. We know he thinks he is above the rules, be they social convention or the laws of the land. Any other politician would have been brought down by now but Trump shrugs off scandal after scandal by just distracting the people and carrying on like nothing happened. We can still shame our politicians into changing their minds and resigning when they cross lines. Can you say the same?
Yet no brave citizen has tried to take a pot shot yet. The most fervent gun supporters are on his side. The tyrannical government doesn't just own the army now, it owns the militia too.

The real test doesn't come until he gets voted out I suppose. If he tries to stay in against a vote, will that bring out the gun owners against him? If he loses in 2020? What if he rigs elections until 2024? What if he tries to ditch the two term limit? Would that do it? I wouldn't be surprised if the gun owners still stayed home.
If he did that it would be a general and the military that come for him. Not the parade of asshats that take their AR-15s to Walmart.
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The Final Dakar  (op)
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Nov 6, 2017, 10:15 AM
 
If a mod would split this off into its own thread it exploded overnight
     
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Originally Posted by OreoCookie View Post
But the culture around guns in America needs to change. Or, at the very least, Americans need to be honest to themselves and be ok with disproportionately high homicide and suicide rates, that it is a worthwhile trade-off for whatever (perceived) liberty they would like to have.
THIS. Just this. If America decides that it wants to pay that price, then fine. Treat every mass shooting like an earthquake and pick up the pieces afterwards. No debate necessary.

A year or so ago, we had a crazy person in Sweden running around in a school trying to kill people. Because he could not get hold of a gun, said crazy person used a sword. The body count was 2. Is anyone going to dispute that the body count would have been higher if he had had access to a semi-automatic rifle?
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Nov 6, 2017, 10:38 AM
 
The news is reporting the shooter was a militant atheist who went on a FB rant prior to the shooting. A possible motive was his ex in laws are memebers of the church, but were not there Sunday.
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Nov 6, 2017, 12:04 PM
 
Another shooter with a history of domestic violence.
     
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Nov 6, 2017, 12:55 PM
 
Originally Posted by Waragainstsleep View Post
In any genuinely plausible scenario which comes first, the armed rebellion or the military shooting civilians?
Shooting civilians with what exactly?

Isn't this whole argument about superior armament?

Armed rebellion happens before laser guided artillery.
( Last edited by subego; Nov 6, 2017 at 01:13 PM. )
     
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Nov 6, 2017, 01:13 PM
 
Originally Posted by OreoCookie View Post
Guns are an outdated compared to speech and much weaker than information and communication.

You have the means to become a terrorist without owning a gun. What does more damage: a dangerous idea with popular support or a few people with guns, fitness and training to use them? Or shutting down a water waste plant by hacking it compared to shooting some rando in the street before being shot yourself?

The American Constitution was state of the art in the 18th century, informed by what was their reality back then (including technology, culture and values). Progress has significantly moved the bar here.
Dangerous ideas didn't exist in the 18th century? Do dangerous ideas fare poorly in China because their technology has not advanced to the point where information can be freely disseminated?

How many people know how to hack a filtration plant versus those who can shoot a gun?
     
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Nov 6, 2017, 02:06 PM
 
Originally Posted by subego View Post
Shooting civilians with what exactly?

Isn't this whole argument about superior armament?

Armed rebellion happens before laser guided artillery.
Is there something the military could start shooting civilians with that wouldn't result in an armed rebellion? Obviously not water or squirt cream or whatever. Anything lethal they could shoot with?
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Nov 6, 2017, 02:07 PM
 
Originally Posted by subego View Post
Dangerous ideas didn't exist in the 18th century? Do dangerous ideas fare poorly in China because their technology has not advanced to the point where information can be freely disseminated?

How many people know how to hack a filtration plant versus those who can shoot a gun?
Hacking one is one thing, pouring small pox into the water supply or something is way simpler.
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Thanks mods
     
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Originally Posted by Waragainstsleep View Post
Is there something the military could start shooting civilians with that wouldn't result in an armed rebellion? Obviously not water or squirt cream or whatever. Anything lethal they could shoot with?
I'm happy to theorize about this, but isn't the question at hand the supposed futility of an armed rebellion against a technologically superior force?

How does who shoots first matter to how the government uses its technological military superiority to address the problem of half the adult population being potential assassins?
     
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Nov 6, 2017, 03:45 PM
 
Is Tiananmen Square a good example? I think western media outlets were there to cover the Gorbachev visit, but as long as they were broadcasting live, the Chinese government resisted the brutal crackdown that eventually occurred once they cut off satellite access.



Had cameras not been there, this guy would have been run over instead of being sent for “re-education”
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Nov 6, 2017, 03:59 PM
 
Originally Posted by subego View Post
... but isn't the question at hand the supposed futility of an armed rebellion against a technologically superior force?
I think this is about hypothetically stripping away a right from everyone. One we've had for over two centuries, to reduce the chances of the occasional mass shooting. Which are so occasional, most people will live out their lives without ever being in the same state when such a shooting happens. Yes, I'm ignoring single shootings. But this debate comes up after every mass shooting.

Similar things happen after air crashes. The chances of dying per-km-travelled is much lower for flying vs driving. But after each crash, air travel drops for a time. And the chances of dying in a mass shooting are vastly lower still, a close approximation of zero for the average citizen.

Using the "top-5" shooting numbers above, 192 people died in 10 years, or 19 per year via mass shooting. Maybe smaller mass shootings bump the numbers a little, so let's say 20 per year. If the USA has 322 million people, and everyone lives 70 years, the death rate is 12,600 per day of old age. About one chance in 230,000 of dying via mass shooting rather than other causes.

To fix this, we should apparently change our Constitution, collect up guns, fight everyone who "objects", and change our political assumptions (guns limit gov behavior). Shall we give up speech next, because people die in riots after some speeches?
     
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Nov 6, 2017, 04:48 PM
 
I agree mass shootings are the wrong dataset, but the argument is the same if we substitute a better one.

What we get out of the freedom isn't worth the price.

The rationale for this is we get nothing for the price, because guns are useless against a technologically superior force.

I'm trying to tease out justifications for this rationale.
     
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Nov 6, 2017, 05:09 PM
 
Originally Posted by subego View Post
The rationale for this is we get nothing for the price, because guns are useless against a technologically superior force.
I'm not comfortable with this assumption. According to military size data, the US military amounts to 4.2 active soldiers for every 1,000 of total population. The civilian population outnumbers the soldiers by almost 250:1, with enough guns to equip every citizen (there are over 100 guns for each 100 citizens).

Granted, the military could nuke cities. But I'm not seeing that the outcome would be assured under realistic conditions.

A decent percentage of the population are vets with military training of their own. Even if no military sided with the population, they'd suffer massive casualties trying to duke it out with the civilians. Because our population is armed. Superior weapons only count for so much when you're surrounded, vastly outnumbered, and everyone knows where your bases are.
     
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Originally Posted by reader50 View Post
I'm not comfortable with this assumption.
Neither am I.
     
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Nov 6, 2017, 05:27 PM
 
In a real world sitution, more than just guns would be used. It would be a battle of brains and who can do the most damage with anything from blowing up important bridges, to poisoning water supplies to cutting off power and other stuff.
     
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Nov 6, 2017, 05:32 PM
 
Originally Posted by Chongo View Post
The news is reporting the shooter was a militant atheist who went on a FB rant prior to the shooting. A possible motive was his ex in laws are members of the church, but were not there Sunday.
I've not seen him called a 'militant' atheist on any main-stream new site- and I even checked Fox. All are reporting he was an atheist. What, in your view, makes one a 'militant' atheist? Is it simply posting about their lack of belief on social media? Does that make you a militant Catholic?

I'm curious if you think members of this board are militant atheists.
     
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Nov 6, 2017, 05:36 PM
 
Originally Posted by subego View Post
I'm happy to theorize about this, but isn't the question at hand the supposed futility of an armed rebellion against a technologically superior force?

How does who shoots first matter to how the government uses its technological military superiority to address the problem of half the adult population being potential assassins?
Others are talking about how effective a rebellion or resistance would be, I'm talking about what it would take and how likely it actually is to happen.

As things stand, the invasion of US soil by foreign powers is completely unthinkable. Anyone with the potential to even establish a beachhead would be nuked into oblivion in short order. This leaves the most likely need for 2As armed militia as fighting the US government rather than any foreign one.

Given the behaviour of the current administration, installing under qualified yes men to every available office, sacking dissenters without real cause, publicly musing about pardoning itself in advance of criminal proceedings etc, what exactly does a US government have to do for the militia to mobilise against it? I proposed the following criteria:

1. Trying to take American's guns (by force);
2. Refusing to relinquish power if voted out of office in 2020, or if impeached beforehand;
3: Attempting to overturn the presidential term limit to stay in the job for life;
4: Rigging a US presidential election beyond any doubt whatsoever;
5: Raising taxes too high;

1 can be addressed partly by the other question of whether the militia fighting would be futile or not. If it would, there is no need for a tyrannical government to take the guns. Also for now, the gun owners are on the government's side so again, there is no need to take the guns.

2 and 3 seem likely definitions of tyranny, though depending who the other candidates are its not inconceivable that conservative voters would prefer an illegal GOP dictator over an extreme socialist or someone else they dislike. Maybe an open atheist? I also think such a scenario would be more likely to spark a rebellion from the military than from private citizens. Could be a quick coup and restoration of constitutional democracy, could be a second civil war. It will depend on how much of the military rebels. Again, the influence of effective ness of a 2A militia is questionable at best. I feel like the military is likely to have leaders of greater integrity than any who might inspire any organised contribution from the unwashed masses.

4 would be the same as 2 or 3 except I don't know what the burden of proof would be beyond Trump admitting it openly. Even then half his supporters would likely deny it and carry on supporting him.

5 is not standard GOP operating procedure but eventually the 1% will need to find new mechanisms to gather even more wealth.
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Nov 6, 2017, 07:40 PM
 
Originally Posted by Chongo View Post
Is Tiananmen Square a good example?
What is currently more important for China's Communist Party to remain in power, the Great Firewall and other associated efforts (e. g. to squash reporting on the corruption of party members)? Or the Chinese army?

That's why nowadays information control in these authoritarian regimes is so crucial, and their approach to interfere has become more and more sophisticated. In China, there is a tug-of-war between clever Chinese who invent ever new memes to circumvent censorship, and the state who leaves ambiguities in what they censor so as to encourage self-censorship. Controlling which information is disseminated and sowing doubt about other news sources that tell different stories are table stakes now to remain in power.
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