Potentially useful regulatory distinctions

Some useful distinctions, I think:

* Regulating using a gun
* Regulating carrying a gun
* Regulating owning a gun
* Regulating parts of guns
* Regulating tools that can be used to make guns
* Regulating the information necessary to make guns
* Regulating the information necessary to make tools that can be used to make guns

Bonus distinction:

* Substantial noninfringing use
* Substantial non-horrific use


      1.  But do we regulate using, owning, buying, making, the tools to make, or the information to make bullets? That’s the question!

  1. Fining people whose guns get stolen (because they didn’t keep them in a locked place and also out of the reach of children).

          1. That’s still a ton of work. They’d have to be isolated, so no typical suburban smash-n-grab (unless they stole the entire safe), and you’d have to have a couple guys unwilling to rat on each other (although gangs would be ideal for that kind of thing).

          2. I don’t disagree.  My points, however, were: 

            1) That safes and locks are often unreliable;

            2) As such, penalizing gun owners who have their guns stolen (provided they actually have it locked up) and used in a crime is ridiculous.

        1. Oh, and trigger locks?  They can be defeated by a screwdriver:


          I have personally done this one when a trigger lock was stuck on one of my rifles.

          I’m not saying that people shouldn’t do everything they reasonably can to secure their firearms.

          I AM saying that uniformly penalizing people if their guns get stolen is stupid.

          1.  Making an EFFORT to keep guns out of the wrong hands is not stupid.
            Banks, cars, your home can be broken into but that doesn’t stop people from locking them.

          2. How fortunate, then, that I didn’t argue that making the effort is stupid.  

            This discussion would be a lot more intelligent if you would answer the propositions put forth, not something I didn’t write.

          3.  I stand corrected . You did say people should do everything they can….
            That said, if evidence points to guns being stolen because they weren’t secured, then I stand by my comment those people should be fined, if not cited, for negligence on their part.

            This discussion would be a lot more civil if you would consider my basic premise. Whether you agree or disagree you don’t have to get so defensive.

      1. Please.  Other things being equal, a safe and gunlocks obviously make it less likely for someone to steal the guns.  Yes, you can get around them; as rattypilgrim points out, it’s possible to get around a lot of things.  Possible and probable are not the same thing.

        Face it, there’s a much lower probability of a gun getting stolen if it’s properly locked up.  It requires at the very least knowledge that you can get around the locks, knowledge of how to do that, and at least a little bit of equipment that not everyone is going to carry around with them.

        If you don’t want to lock your guns up come up with a good excuse like “locking up the guns prevents me from using them for self-defense”.  No one considers locks useless just because every lock that’s ever been devised can be broken somehow.

        1. I belabor my point, because you evidently missed it.  I’m not arguing per se that locks and safes aren’t worthwhile, because they do indeed deter theft and use by the only casually-motivated.  

          I am arguing against the original notion that gun owners should necessarily and uniformly be punished if their guns are stolen and used in the commission of a crime.  Does that make sense?

          1.  If a simple handgun (whatever that is) is stolen, or a run of the mill hunting rifle, then depending on if it was under lock and key or sitting on the coffee table with minors in the house there is room for discussion.

            But if the gun(s) are automatic multi round weapons of mass destruction the owner should face some penalty. Owners of Pit Bulls and other dogs who have gotten loose and injured or killed people are held responsible.

            People should be prepared for the ramifications of owning military type weapons and the consequences should they get into the wrong hands.

      1.  It’s called “responsibility” a word the right wing likes to throw around a lot. People whose houses are arsenals should have to account for their weapons and do their damnedest to make sure kids, thieves, or drunk spouses or partners have a very difficult time accessing them.

  2. Also:
    Regulating buying a gun
    Regulating defining the definition of a gun

    Transporting (temporalily) a gun from Canada into the USA

    1. Fill the lower reciever with molding material and use the result as a pattern to hammer metal over. That’s how some Afghan gunsmiths make black market AKs.

    1. \(★´−`)人(´▽`★)/
       fuckin saved.  probably the hardest I ever laughed at that show.

      oh, and uh…  guns ‘r’ bad, m’kay?

    2. Also from the Simpsons:

      Lisa disguised as Jeff Boyman: “Whatcha drawing there?”
      Nelson Muntz: “Robot with guns for arms shooting a plane made out of guns that fires guns”

    1. link pls?
      edit: wait, was that link always there? I’m not thinking clearly, this cold I’ve got is brutal

  3. Sane gun laws will be very helpful but they are not the only thing needed.  Guns don’t kill people, crazy people with guns kill people.  You can pass all the gun laws you like but it will not prevent some crazy person like that deranged fellow in China who stabbed a bunch of children. Prevention though the proper treatment of those with mental problems is going to be essential too.  We need more Doctors and fewer guns.

    1.  Stupid people, incompetent people and evil people kill with guns as well and you can’t cure that with more doctors.

      1. In most (though probably not all) cases, “evil” is just shorthand for “I don’t understand what he’s upset about”

        People don’t get infected with evil, they become like that because that is the way their live goes for some horrible horrible reason. This is not cured with medicine.

        But giving people a regular option to have someone listen to their problems is a way to change it. So is valuing people more, even if we don’t understand what they’re upset about.

        1. Agreed.  Evil != mentally ill.  And in most of these cases, mental illness of some sort is the underlying problem.

    2. Oh, so we’re proposing locking up innocent people here rather than treating obsessive gun ownership as a mental health issue itself eh? Or can one inform the other?

    3. Crazy people without guns kill fewer people. My son’s school was invaded by a nutter with a hammer. One teacher got seriously hurt. My son saw the whole thing. If the loony had been carrying a gun, my son would be dead.

    4. Stabbed and injured. Disgusting, but every one of those parents have their children. 

      There’s 20 parents in Newtown, CT that don’t and never will because a seriously disturbed person had access to an arsenal all his own. 

      1.  Exactly the point of gun control, right here, in this point. You can still hurt and kill people with other weapons, and it’s not even hard to improvise something. Greatest danger in the home etc etc.

        But it takes so much more work to kill people with other weapons that people on a rampage can be stopped before major damage is done, because victims can improvise defensive weapons that are just nearly as good as the attackers and level out the imbalance of force. Or failing that, have two or three people tackle them – charge 30 feet down an open hallway at someone with a gun aimed and a commitment to killing, that’s not going to end well for anyone without a miracle. Charge 30 feet down an open hallway at someone with a knife and a commitment to killing, that’s a different thing altogether, and odds are good that it ends with your two or three heroes being interviewed on TV from hospital or from home, not their widows.

        Amok, berserk, “shooting-spree”, this sort of mass-killing suicide isn’t new; what’s new is that the murderers are more successful with guns because guns are more dangerous than knifes, swords, maces, axes, picks, the grand panapoly of pole-arms, and so forth.

      1.  Sort of. Though, the trend in the US is to allow firearms almost anywhere, and to carry them concealed.

          1.  Is that because guns are banned? Or is that coincidental (ie we ban guns around our most valuable/vulnerable citizens?)

            Regardless, I wouldn’t want teachers carrying guns at school because inevitably either some dumb kid is going to steal one to show off, or we’ll have one of those “idiot saftey demo” moments, and having either in a room of 20-30 kids and surrounded by many more rooms with same is a very high density population for being hit by an accidental discharge.

            There’s far more teachers in school every day over the nation than spree killers. The statistical probability of bad results from armed staff make my head ache.

      2. They do. I merely stated it to “Add to the list”.
        Without active checks like security guards and metal detectors it’s not an effective regulation but it is one and thus can be placed on the list of regulation types.

  4. Connecticut has some of the strictest gun laws in the nation.

    In Mexico guns are pretty much outlawed, and has much more gun violence.
    Do you really think more gun regulation will help?
    One of the things that most school shooter have in common is that they are on prescription psychoactive drugs.
    If you want to regulate something regulate homes with guns that have people on these medications. It’s not the guns fault that mentally unstable people have access to them.

    1. So not Marilyn Manson then? Not death metal? This year’s scape-goat is the mentally ill? Or is it prescription medications?
      The only thing ALL school (mall/cinema/etc.) shooters have in common is… um, shooting. Hmm, if only there was some way to limit their ability to do that.

      1. well, they also have being batshit crazy in common. unless you’re suggesting it’s normal to go on a shooting spree.

    2. Most countries regulating gun-ownership do, in fact, require extensive background checks on the individual and his/her immediate family. Divorced parents of young males with developmental problems would be refused a permit in many cases. Of course this requires health authorities to know about such individuals, something that’s easier to have with a national health service that actually cares about such things.

      Gun ownership is actually allowed in Europe, you know?

    3. Wait, have I been misunderstanding the American obsession with “gun rights” all along? You lot don’t really give guns themselves rights, do you?

    4. One of the things that most school shooter have in common is that they are on prescription psychoactive drugs.

      About a quarter of the population is on prescription psychoactive drugs, maybe more.

      1.  having been on anti-depression medication before, i can attest that they can in some cases worsen the condition. and they can make you feel really screwed up. and had i not come forward and told my doctor so, i would still be on them.

        1.  “That’s nice”.

          I’m sorry to hear that you’ve had trouble with medication, and I’m glad to hear you have good lines of communication with your doctor, but I kind of feel like this is a “what does this have to do with the price of tea in china?” moment.

          Depression is not spree killing.

    5. Won’t somebody please think of the poor guns?!
      Just think about those poor little guns being melted down makes me sad :(

      Mexico is in the currently in the middle of the bloodiest war on earth. So there’s that too.

    6. You should really read Maggie’s Post about this:

      Laws usually reflect the culture or opinions of voters (at least to some extent). In order to change how (and how often) they are used, you need to change how they are perceived, which will then change everything else mostly by itself.
      And then there’s the media side, the social side, the educational side, the cultural side of this thing … an airplane does crash because a single component failed, and humans do not become like this because a single thing went wrong.

      Especially with Christmas coming up, I’d say that we should maybe try and be nice to each other for a change. That includes cutting down on our use of stereotypes. That’s not easy, but let’s try.

      Regulating using stereotypes and/or easy answers

    7. No one wants to deal with that side of the issue, it’s easier to blame guns than the medications too many people take usually for BS reasons, and not being properly treated, and no throwing pills at the person is not treatment it’s an expensive bandaid 

    8.  I’d be willing to bet that it’s nowhere near as difficult to get a gun in Connecticut as it is to get a driver’s license.

    9. Need. DISLIKE. Button.
      Your sincerely comparing a country like Mexico to the US? Have you EVER been out of town, or are you just out of your mind?

  5. There should be a psychological survey that qualifies you to own a gun. The first question should be: do you want to own a gun? Answering yes to this question should be the first mark against you.

      1. Absurdity can be thought provoking. Arthur C. Clarke wrote a book where in the future computers were used to choose the ideal president. The first rule the computer applied is that the candidate should never have expressed any desire for the job.

        I feel the same way about gun ownership. I don’t trust anybody who wants one to be calm enough to own one.

  6. In y the UK guns are pretty much outlawed and we have VERY low rates of fun crime, and we kinda like it that way, too.

    1.  I love that regular policemen are not carrying guns in the UK. Which all the more makes me abhor those types with automatic weapons _in hand_ running about train and tube stations. Please make them go away, they scare me!

  7. Remember how, after nearly 3000 people died on 9/11, the US government passed the patriot act, went to war with two countries, invented the TSA, the DHS, killer robots, and eroded civil liberties?

    Would be great if they could get even halfway as excited over the homegrown terrorism killing four times as many people every year.

    1. Yes.  Let’s react to senseless, horrible tragedy with more security theater, flushing away more of our civil rights and unleashing our collective rage on people who had absolutely nothing to with the tragedy in the first place. 

      1. That’s not really what I’m suggesting, but now that I think about it: a killer drone in every school would probably be more readily approved by Congress than any gun control measure.

        1. If the drone is programmed to kill anyone carrying a gun, maybe we’re getting towards a solution?

          ‘Oh, it was a toy gun? The drone can’t tell the difference. Sorry’. On second thoughts, let’s just get rid of the guns.

      2. Every day I curse my government for taking away my civil liberties!

         Without feeling that comforting bulge under my jacket I feel like I could be snuffed out at any time, like a candle in a stiff breeze.

        Damn you, interfering UK government!

      3. *Definition of Civil rights may vary depending on your location, and may or may not include the right to own or carry tools invented for efficiently penetrating flesh, bone and brains using chemically propelled metal pellets.

      4. Like the list Cory proposed: totally collective rage. Nothing to do with killing people: access to guns.


    2. We got so excited we killed over a million more, and set on our way to “feel safe” by decimating our civil rights.

      No, it would not be great for america to get that excited again. There is no boogeyman left alive in this situation.

  8. Nobody talks about why these young men do this. Clearly, it’s a complex issue, but there are some the things I would love to see debated beyond the obvious hot button issue of Gun control

    The first is this glorification of homicide in American Drama. How many cop shows do you need where the plot revolves around a murderer, who is in turn predictably legally murdered by our heroes. Culturally, Americans seem to have embraced the use of lethal force as the ultimate way to solve problems. 

    The second thing I don’t see discussed is the divisiveness of Social and Political discussion. When Media and Politicians ratchet up the fear for political advantage, or an edge in the debate, it is clear that a percentage of the population buys the message, subconsciously at least. When Politicians ‘raise the stakes’ again and again, some people just think the sky must be about to fall, and that kind of thinking can rationalize anything. A little more nuanced, rational discussion on things would help as well as a willingness to say ‘Well it’s not how I want it to be, but it is how the majority want it’. 

    So if you want regulation, lets start with regulating the number of a) gun deaths b) Use of Guns to threaten death or bodily harm on prime time TV, and move homicide to become an NC-17 classification in Movies and games. 

    1. Are you suggesting regulations targeting fictional violence over regulations targeting actual violence?  Because that’s the sort of scapegoat thinking that enables the problem.

      1. I guess it is more about making violence have more weight in the movie and entertainment classifications, rather than skin. So 12 year olds could rather see a boob than an AK-47 on TV. Currently it is the other way around.

    2. Nobody talks about why these young men do this.

      You sure about that?  I seem to remember for a few weeks after the CO shooting everyone was talking about “why do these young men do this?”  And something similar seems to be going on right now.

      1. But as usual everyone ignored the real issues and went looking for the easiest scapegoat, the guns. The issue is that instead of treating mental health issues we drug them up with psychoactive drugs and then act like we don’t know the real reason they went off the deep end, and guns and access to them aren’t the issue, the drugs and lack of real treatment is the problem, and even with Obamacare we don’t deal with it properly

        1.  No, no, they went for the easiest scapegoat, Marylin Manson and Rammstein. That was in the first 24-48 hours. I think then they may have blamed the ability to wear long coats for a bit.

          But when things settled down the consensus is very much that one boy was a sociopathic monster and the other was a vulnerable depressive who was bullied and manipulated into going Thelma and Louise with him.

  9. Potentially useful statistics

    • 20% of US gun owners own 65% of the guns
    • The US is 5% of the world population, owns 50% of guns worldwide

      1. He is presenting statistics. Statistics on their own don’t have points or opinions. You have to do that bit. So, either you think “America is the freeest country on earth, fuck yeah!” or “That is a lot of guns” or “I wonder why that is”, etc.

  10. * Regulating the tools that are capable of carrying the information necessary to make tools that can be used to make guns.
    * Regulating societal groups thought most likely to break one of the aforementioned items.* Regulating the thought patterns necessary to create or discover one of the aforementioned items.

  11. *Regulate tools that can make tools that make guns
    *Regulate information that can make tools that make tools that make guns
    *Regulate tools
    *Regulate information.

  12. Good evidence all over the place that limiting powerful guns reduces massacres and murders. It won’t stop them, it will dramatically limit them. QED

        1. It’s difficult to take any proposed “solutions” seriously when the people proposing them don’t appear to have a grasp of the facts.

    1. Massacres, yes, murders, no. There is no strong correlation between gun bans and murder rates; access to guns is a less strong driver of violent crime than other factors like poverty and enforcement. In order to lower the murder rate, help for the desperate goes much further than gun laws (as evidenced by the low murder rates in countries with successful social welfare programs.)

  13. In our tiny country (the Grand Duchy of Luxemburg), owning guns is completely legal, we even have a “European” version of our permit allowing us to “travel” to other countries with a max of 12 firearms (when i say travel , I mean to a hunt or a shooting range/competition)
    Concealed carry is allowed in very rare cases for civilians
    Having a few contacts in the right places , I can say we have around +-90 k registered firearms with civilians for a population of +-500 k.
    Add another +- 15 k for unregistered/illegally owned ones.(probably more)
    All that to say that we are quite well armed around here and i never saw anyone blowing a fuse and massacre innocent people.
    One reason maybe being that anyone having registered weapons and being reported for excessive drinking, domestic violence, treatment linked to depression etc…, will be stripped from his guns and permits.
    Anyone behaving like an ass on the range will be reported similarly.
    Problem is , what about the black market stash he hid in his barn/garage and no one knows about.
    Germany has a very strict system (and an evaluation) and still we have seen a number of shootings happening there.
    What I see from here, all the way in the Shire , is that something is rotten in the U.S. of A. 
    Some say it’s because weapons are so easy to get to, I’m not so sure about that. I strongly believe it is ultimately about a society, it’s members and how they are (not) being taken care of .

    1. “I strongly believe it is ultimately about a society, it’s members and how they are (not) being taken care of .”

      I think that in the end, this is probably the right answer. This, and how many semi-automatic casualness weapons those people who are not being taken care of have access to.

    2. My dear Lëtzebuerger, the number of kills by gunfire in Germany is directly related to gun access. Every single death is a direct outcome of broken regulations or illegal possession. And while there are approximately 70 million people in Germany, the death toll by gunfire is low compared to the US. As in Lëtzebuerg.

  14. So, we’re what, going to round up people’s guns? You’re gonna show up at gun owners’ houses and ask for their guns?

    The point is to have fewer shootings, right?

  15. The Supreme Court will rule that concealed firearms be allowed in all spaces, public and private.
    All patriotic Americans will carry firearms most of their lifes, to guard against tyranny.

    Law enforcement will carry military weaponry, wear full body armour and travel in IFV:s and armored helicopters at all times to protect society from the armed crazies.

    To protect the children, black pods with CCTV systems and robot-controlled machine guns will be mounted around and inside all public buildings.
    These will be supplemented with cruising helicopter drones and high-altitude dirigibles.

    The algorithms controlling the robot weapons will be classified and shielded from the public for reasons of national security.
    They will make sure not to interfere when law-abiding Americans stand their ground against unarmed threats, while instantly taking out bad people making sudden and suspicious movements.
    The industry building these advanced and trusted systems will become rich, amass huge influence, and will thus be given immunity from wrongful-death claims.

    The American people will finally be secure from all threats to their safety and freedom alike.

    1. And to think, the only thing preventing it is patriotic americans like yourself with high capacity clips and assault rifles.

      Thank you for your service 

  16. As has been pointed out, there are also guns in Europe, yet there are fewer shootings. There are multiple reasons for that, some are socioeconomic in nature.

    However, there are some seemingly very obvious reasons for our high gun ownership and low gun crime.
    1: Mostly hunting weapons (semi-automatic, spary-fire weapons, and hand guns are not common, and quite hard to get)
    2: There are some background checks 
    3: To get a gun license you have to pass a course about guns and gun safety4: Rules about the STORAGE of guns. This last one is a biggie, as it reduces both accidental shootings (shooting your child because you though he was a burglar) and means that the kitchen drawers aren’t filled with an Uzi and ammo for Psycho Jr. to take as he exits the building.Those are the ones I see as being practical. Guns need not be outlawed, just add the requirements of a course, safe storage, and don’t sell so many non-hunting guns (make it just a bit harder to get new ones). The ones that already own these guns will hang on to theirs, and it will be a little harder to get new ones. 

    1.  are you in the UK ?   sounds like it
      Hunting weapons are a minority here (in Lux) , there is no legal difference between a semi auto rifle and a hunting rifle and/or a hand gun, any gun is a firearm.
      Full auto’s can be purchased but not used (yes i know …) we have a carry permit (not concealed carry) and a detention permit , the detention one is basically for collection firearms and knives (yes knife carry is prohibited here too, talking about combat/hunting knives and swords)
      Background checks are minimal , basically show a crime free record .
      One difference though, you will be called in for a short interview at the local police station and they are supposed to check your storage (which never happens)
      I know for a fact that .223 semi autos are not being sold freely in France anymore, or rather that they are now in a category that makes it almost impossible for a civilian to purchase (last death cases i remember of in France were due to .22 LR , which are still freely available)

    2. Unfortunately, all of that was already in place in CT.  Training, locks, permits, regulation and ban of assault-looking weapons – 
      Permit to purchase handgunFBI and State background check
      Training course
      and a high licence fee14 day waiting period to purchase handgunPermit required to transport handgun, even to the rangeGuns must be stored unloaded in a locked container All transfers, even private party sales, are subject to having a permit and are registered and tracked through a state databaseAll ‘assault weapons’ are registered since 1993.Cosmetic features and some functional features are banned (bayonet, pistol grip, etc) since 1993.Allowed police seizure of weapons with sworn warrant of ‘danger to others’.

  17. Enact an outright ban on all guns tomorrow.  Fat lot of good it will do to address the many millions of privately owned guns already out there.  Even if you forcibly confiscated all of the registered firearms, there’d still be enough in circulation that they’d be cheap and available.

    It’s a bit late to put the toothpaste back in the tube.

    Besides, as awful as these instances of gun violence are, cheeseburgers and mongo-sized pepsis kill FAR more people.  And, overall, school violence is actually very low.  These are statistical corner cases.

    It seems to me that it would make much more sense to implement better methods to identify and treat mentally-ill kids and improve schools in general – smaller classes, better compensated teachers, better in-school counseling, etc.

    Or, we could do what we’re about to do: make a bunch of noise over it, waste a bunch of money and effort on legislation that will either fail or get gutted by the time it’s implemented and find ourselves in the exact place we started.

    1.  Only crazy people think an outright ban would ever happen. Stricter laws regarding purchase would be a better start. It wouldn’t have helped in this case though, as all of the weapons were (allegedly) purchased by a capable adult, who was then killed using the weapons by her mentally unstable son.

    2.  Whatever you can do, it cannot solve the problem within a fortnight.
      And I think everyone who thinks about this a little longer wil agree that no single measure can help here. It’s all a complicated mess, and you don’t just switch it off with a law.
      If there _is_ a change in weapon-related laws, it will have to be accomanied by a lot of other legislative, executive and other changes that need to happen, and it must happen over a period of time.

      Arguing against any simple solution like this is effectively arguing a strawman. Outlawing guns would not have changed this persons actions significantly in the short term, neither would outlawing games, music or movies, forced religious “education”, punishing every mildly suspicious behaviour, ignoring every mildly suspicious behaviour, medicating or otherwise treating every mildly suspicious behaviour.

    3. @google-8951a767487a18dda9c79c84ce2196b3:disqus 

      $1000 per gun buyback, limited to certain kinds of guns. Nice economic stimulus too.

    4. Does it ever seem to anyone else that people making this argument are actually bragging about the fact that, although gun control might be a good way to keep innocent people from dying, it’s too late and you can’t take my fucking guns away?

  18. Ah – if the gun ‘lobby’ had its way, we’d regulate regulating.  Then regulate that.  Reggerlaters, mount up!

  19. Regulation is full of pitfalls (but must be tightened).  Just stop doing business with any company, store, financial advisor – anyone – who has anything to do with the supply of deadly weapons.  Money talks.

    Oh, and I’m with Morgan Freeman.  Regulate the disclosure of information about suspects, victims, locations, methods in these incidents.

    1. I agree that you should vote with your wallet.  Sadly, I don’t think it will do anything to curb gun violence.  Besides, what constitutes a deadly weapon?  Even if you restrict it to guns.  Does that include hunting rifles and shotguns?

      As for regulating disclosure of information regarding suspects in these cases, that’s effectively censorship of the press.  While one would hope that they’d have the tact to avoid dwelling on these individuals, telling them what they can and can’t report is, arguably, a very bad idea.

      1. Yeah, I know.  Free speech is critical.  But I totally buy into the “they got fame I’ll get fame” school.

        Maybe there’s a simpler solution.  Invest massively in laser weapons.  Surely they wouldn’t be defined as “firearms” under the 2nd Amendment!  Or regulate the sale of gun lubricant – let ’em all rust away over the next 50 years.

      2.  In Germany at least, the names of suspects or victims are not given by the police, and News usually don’t report them even if they have them. Especially for suspects who turn out not guilty, but also for victims and their families this is very good. Under the influence of other countries’ reporting habits, this is eroding, and this year there was a witch hunt for a guy who later turned out completely innocent, but now everyone knew his name. Lots of people and at least one newspaper had a lot of apologizing to do afterwards. I think personal data of people involved in crimes (or accidents for that matter) does not belong in the public, and it does not add substance to the story, it just sells it better.

      3. > that’s effectively censorship of the press

        In all honestly, that sounds like a fucking great idea with no drawbacks.

        I think the idea that the press should have free reign to do whatever the hell they want to has been tried extensively and been shown conclusively to be disastrously harmful to basically everyone, and I would fully support the censorship or even outright ban of profit-making news media, the vile shitbags.

  20. Regulate the ‘militia’ that the 2nd Amendment mentions (not in passing).

    ‘A well regulated militia being necessary…’ (fuck the comma in the other version, it’s an 18th century grammatical thing)

    Switzerland has a militia:  ‘Switzerland does not have a standing army, instead opting for a peoples’ militia for its national defence. The vast majority of men between the ages of 20 and 30 are conscripted into the militia and undergo military training, including weapons training. The personal weapons of the militia are kept at home as part of the military obligations; Switzerland thus has one of the highest militia gun ownership rates in the world’

    See that bit about ‘vast majority of men’?  Big numbers.

    Compare and contrast gun homicide rates USA vs Switzerland:  USA 2.98 gun homicides per 100,000 population in 2009; Switzerland … 0.72.  

    Make of that what you will.


    1. Was the whole point of a regulated milita to be an alternative to a standing army which various of the founding fathers feared would be used by the govt to oppress its citzenry (having plenty of evidence from the British Army)? 

      Maybe the US should choose between a standing army and the 2nd amendment.

      1. I didn’t quite follow that, but “regulated” made sense to me, especially in the context of my comment.
        The US govt has plenty of armed forces within its borders that could be used for oppression if they chose.  DEA, FBI, Police, Army Reserves, so on.  The process of voting people into power carries the inherent responsibility of a little “know your customer” with it – so that you don’t vote in a crazed tyrant.

        Why can’t the US regulate its militia well, like Switzerland does?

        I can’t quite get a fix on where you’re coming from or what you’re saying.  Apologies.

        1. Sorry that was less coherent than it could have been. Both Jefferson and Madison wrote heavily against having a standing army, preferring militias to defend the state. My understanding of the history behind the 2nd Amendment is that is was supposed to be instead of having a permanent standing army.

          So, perhaps the US should disband its standing army and replace it with regulated militias instead – just as Switzerland.
          But you don’t want both!

  21. I have to imagine that there is substantial overlap between the group that wants no gun regulations and the group that thinks decent health care, mental health care, school funding, and well paid teachers are pinko commie conspiracies to destroy America. 

    It’s really odd seeing people here advocate for better mental health services in place of gun regulations. If the insane opposition to the pathetic health care law already put into place is indicative of the wider population, the same group that vocally opposes gun regulation is the same group opposing decent health care. According to them, either route is a non-starter. 

    1. It’s just “guns don’t kill people, people kill people” 2.0. If gun violence can be blamed on an already stigmatized minority, we don’t have to confront the idea that their toys are a big problem.

  22. Create a daisy-chain of civil responsibility all along the ‘value’ chain of weapons manufacture and distribution.

    i.e. Bushmaster and the ammo suppliers would now be supporting and compensating the families and community of Newton.

    Unworkable?  Isn’t the USA the country of “just make it work”?

    1. Is it a semiautomatic?

      Will it work in an automatic or semiauto way with lengthy ammo clips?

      If no, then those two sensible bans would still help. 

  23. Short of going door to door and taking all guns away from everybody I don’t know how you can prevent the mass murders that seem to be a part of the American psyche. It might be the violence in movies that we like so much or it might be the 24 hour news cycle that creates a mythology around the mass murderer that makes this more and more common.

    I know the NRA would suggest we just arm everyone – emergency shotguns in every classroom. Mass murders would probably go down since somebody will take out the perp before he gets to far. But on the other hand simple everyday arguments would probably turn into gunfights.

  24. Change the media conversation surrounding mass killings. Report what happened, then stop reporting it until substantial new information is available. The talking heads and pundits should do no more than sympathize and let viewers know how to help the victims through donations or other means. No politics. Stop talking about “preventing tragedies like these” that’s fucking bullshit, no legal policy is going to stop a determined crazy person from doing a crazy thing. In matters of public policy, focus on destigmatizing and treating mental illness. Yes, weapons are a problem but they’re not THE problem.

  25. Forget the idea of regulating the use of tools or information. You can use the same tools to make brooms and furniture. There’s no intrinsic difference between gun-making tools and furniture-making tools; a drill press is a drill press no matter what’s under the work head. There are shops in Afghanistan that make AK 74s using nothing but hammers and hand saws and rattail files.

    And there’s no way to regulate “information needed to make guns” or “information needed to make tools to make guns.”  There’s no way to delineate a difference between that information and any other kind.  Information on how to use a drill press is the same in all cases. There’s no way to say that talking about using a drill press is legal if you want to make furniture but it’s illegal if you want to make an M1911 slide.

    All the other types of regulations you mentioned – there are already tens of thousands of laws on the books that cover just exacty those subjects. 

    1. While your are right about information, this one is a nutter:

      There are shops in Afghanistan that make AK 74s using nothing but hammers and hand saws and rattail files.

      Right, and the ammunition is made by grinding charcoal and some minerals?

  26. I suggest adding a tax on gunpowder.  Smokeless gun powder is very difficult to manufacture and gets around background checks, gun buybacks and other methods for reducing gun violence that just scratch the surface.  Raising the price of bullets sounds good, but its relatively easy to manufacture bullets in the black market.


  27. What if we just did everything possible to reduce the number of guns. Every single thing. Let’s make it illegal to buy and sell all assault weapons. All semi automatic weapons. All handguns. Let’s have buy back programs so people turn in the guns they already have.

    Would every violent death be done away with? No. Would more people get shot and killed because we have fewer guns? Also no. Would people who enjoy hunting and target shooting be inconvenienced? I don’t fucking care.

  28. I’m not sure that talking about guns makes sense until another question is answered.

    In the UK, there are much higher population density and alcohol issues than the US. The most common murder method is stabbing.

    You would expect, then, that with the presence of a better weapon, namely guns, and with less of a binge-drinking culture, and lower population density, that stabbings would be less frequent, per capita, in the US.

    But it’s not. Fatal stabbings are more common in the US per capita. Shootings with non-handguns are about the same level as stabbings, and shootings with handguns four times higher than those.

    So what is it that makes Americans want to kill each other so much more often than other cultures?

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