Author Topic: A Discussion on Gun Politics  (Read 209 times)

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Offline Chaos Undivided

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A Discussion on Gun Politics
« on: March 29, 2019, 09:49:00 pm »
I wanted to respond to some of the things said in the thread about the New Zealand shooting regarding gun control, but I decided that would be going off-topic, so I decided to start a thread about it.

Meanwhile, New Zealand has already amended its gun laws to ban certain high-fire-rate weapons.

https://www.theonion.com/no-way-to-prevent-this-says-only-nation-where-this-r-1819576527

Quote
CHRISTCHURCH, NZ—In the days following a violent rampage in east-central South Island, New Zealand in which a lone attacker killed fifty individuals, and seriously injured over three dozen others, citizens living in a country where this kind of mass killing almost never occurs reportedly concluded Thursday that there was a way to prevent the massacre from taking place. “This was a terrible tragedy, but these things shouldn't happen and there is something we can do to stop them,” said Auckland resident Samuel Wipper, echoing sentiments expressed by millions of individuals who reside in a nation where only one of the world’s deadliest mass shootings has occurred in the past 50 years and whose citizens are about as likely to die of gun violence as those of other developed nations. “It’s a shame, but what can we do? There really was something that could have kept this guy from snapping and killing a lot of people even if that’s what he really wanted.” At press time, residents of an economically advanced nation where no mass shootings had occurred in the past twenty years were referring to themselves and their situation as “hopeful.”

So I'm never going to write for the Onion, sue me.

I really don't think this is necessary, considering this is literally the first mass shooting in New Zealand in over twenty years. Why institute these bans because of something that hardly ever happens? Really, I think a better solution would be to deploy armed guards to protect mosques, much like what European countries have done with synagogues.

And then you're risking said armed guards snapping and shooting up a place.

As is so often pointed out, if more guns made a country safer, the US would be the safest country in the world. But it isn't.

How many of the European armed guards I mentioned have snapped and shot up a synagogue? Hell, how many armed guards have gone on a rampage in, say, an airport?

You're technically right about it being taking a risk, but it doesn't matter, since that's a meaningless statement. Everything we do has some risk of going catastrophically wrong. Whenever I take a shower, I risk making a fatal slip.

I will agree, however, that more guns don't automatically equal greater safety. But neither do they automatically equal greater danger.

CU - the three examples you had of mass shootings were one crime related dispute and one domestic violence dispute.  The largest number of dead being 7 (all sadly related). No instances of someone getting an AR-15 and shooting more than 10 people. Also given Norway's population and Anders Brevik shooting 98 people how many other mass shootings has Norway had?

Australia had been on a trend of about one mass shooting per year until the gun reforms after Port Arthur. Even with low compliance on the buyback it is very hard to get guns. So far as only career criminals having guns, well I don't mind because it's not career criminals who tend to go postal. Indeed it is in the criminal interest to use guns as little as possible.

No the people who we are worried about with mass shootings are the people who look normal until all of a sudden they lose it and start shooting up a school, a nightclub or vegas. The only way to reduce offenses by these people is to deny the guns. Now they may instead use a knife or use their cars. Well I would much rather that. Cars are inherently more useful than guns and you need a license for them. Knives are dangerous but it is much harder to kill 50 people with a knife. Moreover I think you'll find that knives are often illegal even in places where you can open carry.

Really the US obsession is part of their crypto-white supremacy.

It's true that there have been fewer mass shootings in Australia since the new legislation after the Port Arthur shooting, but mass murders in general don't seem to have abated. Wikipedia lists five massacres for 2014 alone.

The first thing that needs to be said here is that it is a huge problem to look at the question of gun control based around mass shootings.  Public Mass Shootings Rampages are rare events that feel common because they get lots of attention from the media.  In truth, family massacres heavily outnumber mass killings of strangers, and all forms of multicide (mass murder, spree killers, serial killers, terrorists) make up only a small proportion of homicides, less then 5%.  The vast majority of homicides come from drunked barfights, family squables, domestic abuse cases and business disputes between drug dealers.  To determine if the american way is effective we shouldn't only look at mass shootings but per capita homicide rates in general.  Among the rich western democracies we've got (as of 2016):

Norway: 0.51 per 100 000
Spain: 0.63
Italy: 0.67
Ireland: 0.80
Australia: 0.94
Sweden: 1.08
Germany: 1.18
UK: 1.20
France: 1.35
Finland: 1.42
Canada: 1.68
USA: 5.35

Source The United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime
https://dataunodc.un.org/crime/intentional-homicide-victims

In short you are almost six times as likely to be murdered in the USA then you are in Australia.  Yes there are other factors besides just the guns but overall the american system is clearly far inferior at preventing homicide then other rich western democracies

You're right that the US has a problem with violent crime in general and homicide in particular. I think talking about why that is and what measures can be taken would be an interesting discussion. However, I don't think gun control is the way to go. If the evidence indicated that it reliably worked, I might be more willing to consider it. Unfortunately - and I know this might be a bold statement - the evidence indicates otherwise, at least in the US. In America, most gun crime is committed with illegally owned guns. If the laws we already have don't stop violent criminals from getting guns, why would new ones be more successful? No, further restrictions on guns aren't the answer.
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Offline niam2023

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Re: A Discussion on Gun Politics
« Reply #1 on: March 29, 2019, 09:51:24 pm »
Perfectionist Fallacy.
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Offline Askold

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Re: A Discussion on Gun Politics
« Reply #2 on: March 30, 2019, 09:33:10 am »
A note about those "illegal guns" in USA:

Quote
About 48 percent of state prison inmates surveyed said they got the gun they used from a family member, friend, gun store, pawn shop, flea market, or gun show. Most states only require a background check if the purchase happens at a gun store, according to the Giffords Center to Prevent Gun Violence.

Forty percent of state prison inmates admitted they obtained the gun illegally on the black market, from a drug dealer, or by stealing it.

That's from the article Chaos linked. "Illegal" is being used in a very broad sense there as buying the gun from a drug dealer is technically no different from buying it from a family member or other such non-store source where many states in USA require no background check apart from a higher chance that the gun was stolen somewhere along the line.

The article also goes on to note that they had previously made their decision on the claim based on "was the gun bought legally at a gun store or not?" when in reality just because the gun wasn't bought at a store it doesn't mean that it was bought illegally.

And at this point as a foreigner I am going to point out that a system anywhere near something like what Finland has would add a layer of government control for sales between individuals. We already have it in Finland, if I want to buy a gun from my buddy Matti "The Slasher" Meikäläinen, I will still need to apply for the permit first and the two of us file paperwork while doing the transfer of ownership. USA lacks (most) gun registries and only requires permits for certain types of guns (Carry guns, automatic weapons) and therefore there is also a lot less control over who can get guns.

Another note, "illegally owned" is also funny because though a background check can stop a convicted criminal from buying a gun at a store, as long as there are legal ways to buy guns without a background check there is a "loop hole" (and no, this isn't just fear mongering to use that term) where they can make the purchase without getting caught.

So, yes many of these guns are "illegally owned" but as long as there are legal ways to buy guns without a background check, criminals can continue to buy guns from numerous legal sources. By removing that loop hole the availability of guns for criminals will go down and ALTHOUGH IT IS NOT A PERFECT PREVENTION it will at minimum make it easier for law enforcement to reduce guns that criminals have. And I'll still maintain that you motherfuckers should have gotten a proper gun registry 50 years ago and using the "but we are already fucking covered in guns so fixing things now is too hard" is a shitty defense because the fact is that the situation could be improved at least and the NRA teams are just repeating "NO" to any suggestion anyway.

Also I fucking hate you guys for importing your NRA approved talking points to Finnish discussions on gun laws. I like guns, I would like for it to be possible to own guns in the future but when I have jackasses copy pasting "perustuslain toinen lisäys suojaa oikeuttani omistaa ja kantaa aseita" it is not helping my case. It's just making my side look like idiots.
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Offline Chaos Undivided

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Re: A Discussion on Gun Politics
« Reply #3 on: March 30, 2019, 12:04:06 pm »
Perfectionist Fallacy.

I'm not saying we shouldn't institute stricter gun measures because they'd be imperfect, I'm saying we shouldn't because they wouldn't work, since the measures we already have don't reliably keep criminals from getting guns. Of course solutions are rarely if ever perfect, but that's not what I'm complaining about. Jeez, I'd hate to have seen you back in the 20s:

Some guy/gal: You know, I don't think prohibition was the best idea. Even ignoring all the crime it's caused, we don't even know if it's actually reducing drinking at all!
Hypothetical 1920s Niam: Perfect is the enemy of good.

A note about those "illegal guns" in USA:

Quote
About 48 percent of state prison inmates surveyed said they got the gun they used from a family member, friend, gun store, pawn shop, flea market, or gun show. Most states only require a background check if the purchase happens at a gun store, according to the Giffords Center to Prevent Gun Violence.

Forty percent of state prison inmates admitted they obtained the gun illegally on the black market, from a drug dealer, or by stealing it.

That's from the article Chaos linked. "Illegal" is being used in a very broad sense there as buying the gun from a drug dealer is technically no different from buying it from a family member or other such non-store source where many states in USA require no background check apart from a higher chance that the gun was stolen somewhere along the line.

The article also goes on to note that they had previously made their decision on the claim based on "was the gun bought legally at a gun store or not?" when in reality just because the gun wasn't bought at a store it doesn't mean that it was bought illegally.

It sounds like you might be treating this like it's a flaw with the article, but it brings exactly these points up multiple times.

Now that you've brought this up, however, I'd like to say it would be good for future studies of this type to make further distinctions.

And at this point as a foreigner I am going to point out that a system anywhere near something like what Finland has would add a layer of government control for sales between individuals. We already have it in Finland, if I want to buy a gun from my buddy Matti "The Slasher" Meikäläinen, I will still need to apply for the permit first and the two of us file paperwork while doing the transfer of ownership. USA lacks (most) gun registries and only requires permits for certain types of guns (Carry guns, automatic weapons) and therefore there is also a lot less control over who can get guns.

Another note, "illegally owned" is also funny because though a background check can stop a convicted criminal from buying a gun at a store, as long as there are legal ways to buy guns without a background check there is a "loop hole" (and no, this isn't just fear mongering to use that term) where they can make the purchase without getting caught.

So, yes many of these guns are "illegally owned" but as long as there are legal ways to buy guns without a background check, criminals can continue to buy guns from numerous legal sources. By removing that loop hole the availability of guns for criminals will go down and ALTHOUGH IT IS NOT A PERFECT PREVENTION it will at minimum make it easier for law enforcement to reduce guns that criminals have. And I'll still maintain that you motherfuckers should have gotten a proper gun registry 50 years ago and using the "but we are already fucking covered in guns so fixing things now is too hard" is a shitty defense because the fact is that the situation could be improved at least and the NRA teams are just repeating "NO" to any suggestion anyway.

Also I fucking hate you guys for importing your NRA approved talking points to Finnish discussions on gun laws. I like guns, I would like for it to be possible to own guns in the future but when I have jackasses copy pasting "perustuslain toinen lisäys suojaa oikeuttani omistaa ja kantaa aseita" it is not helping my case. It's just making my side look like idiots.

OK, got that out of your system?
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Offline niam2023

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Re: A Discussion on Gun Politics
« Reply #4 on: March 30, 2019, 04:59:09 pm »
Perfectionist Fallacy.

I'm not saying we shouldn't institute stricter gun measures because they'd be imperfect, I'm saying we shouldn't because they wouldn't work, since the measures we already have don't reliably keep criminals from getting guns. Of course solutions are rarely if ever perfect, but that's not what I'm complaining about. Jeez, I'd hate to have seen you back in the 20s:

Some guy/gal: You know, I don't think prohibition was the best idea. Even ignoring all the crime it's caused, we don't even know if it's actually reducing drinking at all!
Hypothetical 1920s Niam: Perfect is the enemy of good.

False Equivalence.
Strawman Fallacy.
Some Ad Hominem / Hasty Generalization (that I'd agree with prohibition because I agree with gun control, using negative connotations of prohibition)
Circular Logic (gun control wouldn't work because people still get killed so we shouldn't have more gun control because people would still get killed...)
« Last Edit: March 30, 2019, 05:04:22 pm by niam2023 »
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