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View Diary: President Obama statement on Connecticut school shooting (395 comments)

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  •  If you don't feel that talking about (22+ / 0-)

    Gun control is appropriate today, then don't.  But you are anyway.  Why is that?  how about to let the folks who feel that they have something to contribute to the discussion speak?  And since you think it's not appropriate, how about if you just not participate?

    •  I never said we can't talk about gun control (7+ / 0-)

      I said that it would be inappropriate for the president to do so right now, because he is supposed to be a unifying figure during a tragedy. But I hope that this will motivate him to push for a renewal of the assault weapons ban and closing other gun control loopholes once the dust settles. I hope this will move public opinion on gun control enough to make it possible.

    •  Of course now is the time (28+ / 0-)

      The NRA, of course, will always say "now is not the time", because all these mass murders make their position look bad.  But if they can just keep anyone from even discussing the issue when people are most motivated to do something about the problem, they can assure that nothing ever changes.

      So, everyone who says "now is not the time to discuss guns", what you are really saying is "let's do nothing, ever, about these slaughters".  Or perhaps you can make up a side issue, and pretend that video games or the Internet is the problem, and we should ban those instead of guns because guns equal freedom and no other freedom counts.

      Meanwhile in China, a madman slashed 22 children with a knife.  At this point, none of those children are dead, and it is possible that all of them will fully recover.

      •  Perhaps "now is not the time" is right for THIS (5+ / 0-)

        day, this day of grieving when political issues, people's agendas, on whichever side of this issue seem crass or opportunistic.
           I'm fine with that. This is a tragic time, a time for the pouring out of emotions and for coming together around those in so much pain.

            But the time to address the issue of gun violence in America must follow this time of grieving.
            We as a Nation, as a People cannot bury our heads in the sand nor be cowed by a powerful lobbying group that has no sense of sanity.

           It would be best I think to assemble a group of wise individuals to formulate a common sense policy which balances the gun Rights important to many Americans, with the need of our society to protect ourselves from the carnage taking place on everyday basis in our public places, on our streets, homes and workplaces.

           Perhaps today is not the day to begin, but that day must come very, very soon.
            We simply can't go on this way.

        "We the People of the United States...." -U.S. Constitution

        by elwior on Fri Dec 14, 2012 at 01:18:39 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  No, today is the day to begin (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          elwior

          Waiting until emotions have died down is a recipe for less effective action.  We all need to immediately work on ways to fix the problem.  If we just wait a few days, we can pretend instead that the deficit or the fiscal cliff or Iran is the real emergency, and go to sleep for a few months until the next mass murder.  And then, again, you can tell us how today is not the day to begin.

    •  Well past time to do something about (16+ / 0-)

      automatic weapons. They have no legitimate use for hunting or self-defense. They are weapons of war intended to cause mass casualties.

      If there is no accountability for those who authorized torture, we can no longer say that we are a nation of laws, not men.

      by MikePhoenix on Fri Dec 14, 2012 at 12:46:53 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Are you perhaps talking about semi-automatic (6+ / 0-)

        weapons?  Automatic weapons are the one's that keep sending out bullets as long as the trigger is pulled.  Semi-automatic weapons shoot one shot each time the trigger is pulled.  There is a big difference and automatic weapons to all intensive purposes are not legal in this country.  

        The gun community uses statements like this to demonstrate the relative ignorance of the way that guns work to discredit those on the gun control side in attempts to destroy the substance of the argument before it ever gets started.  In order to make that argument effectively, one has to be precise with the terminology of the type of weapons they are arguing against.

        And it feels like I'm livin'in the wasteland of the free ~ Iris DeMent, 1996

        by MrJersey on Fri Dec 14, 2012 at 12:58:26 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  Thank you for your correction. (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          sethtriggs, ColoTim, DSPS owl

          Yes, I meant semi-automatic weapons.

          If there is no accountability for those who authorized torture, we can no longer say that we are a nation of laws, not men.

          by MikePhoenix on Fri Dec 14, 2012 at 01:24:35 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

        •  The gun community may use such statements ... (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          jan4insight, liberaldemdave, eps62

          rhetorically to discredit those gun control advocates who are not up on the latest terminology, but the fact is that in a case like this, it's a distinction without a difference.

          If you look up "Glock" (one of the weapons used today in Newtown), you can see that although you have to press the trigger once per shot, you don't need to do anything between shots to prepare, you can fire at least 8 rounds per ammunition container (which they call a "magazine"), and you can perform all actions (presumably including loading new magazines to replace an empty) single-handedly.   That is part of its design requirement, according to the Wikipedia page.

          In short, you can use one hand to keep firing away, and the other to keep reloading, on a continuous basis, as long as you continue to have ammunition.  So the fact that it's "semi-automatic" rather than "automatic" has no practical effect -- in fact, you probably waste fewer bullets and hence run out later in semi-automatic mode than in automatic mode.

          In short a military weapon.  Not something that should be casually available.  The history of the Glock shows that it was designed for military specifications -- for the Austrian military and police.  

          There's no reason that it should be manufactured in quantity, sold with no controls, and made available to anybody who wants one.

          If the 2nd amendment is going to be interpreted so broadly that it means that anyone who feels like it can declare himself a "well-regulated militia", and obtain any kind of weapon of mass destruction, capable of killing two dozen children in a few seconds, then we need to repeal that amendment.  I don't think it was meant that broadly.  Even if you consider that the amendment means an individual right, not just the right of the people collectively to have an armed militia, it was not talking about an individual right to have weapons of mass destruction, whether called "automatic" or "semi-automatic".  The result is that it lets crazy people get easy access to weapons that can kill lots of people.

          Which is exactly what happened.  

          •  How would you do it? There are 300 million weapon (0+ / 0-)

            in the hands of American Citizens?  How do we ban them and collect them?

            •  That's not entirely accurate (0+ / 0-)

              We're talking in this thread only about semi-automatic handguns (fully automatic handguns and rifles are already banned).  There are only 100 million handguns, not 300 million.  I've been trying to look for statistics of how many of those are semi-automatic, but it has to be less than that, so you are off by at least a factor of 3, probably much more.

              We don't have to collect them all at once; if they're impossible to purchase, and there are penalties for not keeping them under lock and key (you are liable if someone steals your gun and commits a crime with it), that will incentivise more people to get rid of their guns.  Right now, it's extremely unlikely that the original lawful purchaser of a gun used in a crime will be punished.

              •  There are 310 million nonmilitary firearms in (0+ / 0-)

                America today....that we know of.   One half of America households own at least one gun.

                The point I was making, is how would it be done....if they were totally banned.  How would you collect them all?  How could you ban them today and get the guns out of the households?  Would we change the Constitution?

                If not totally banned, then what type of gun control are we talking about and how would it be implemented?

                •  But I was not talking about banning all guns (0+ / 0-)

                  The context was mass-destruction handguns, such as semi-automatic pistols like the Glock used in the Newtown school shooting.  

                  Banning new sales and incentivising elimination of existing WMDs was written explicitly in what I said above, namely:

                  We don't have to collect them all at once; if they're impossible to purchase, and there are penalties for not keeping them under lock and key (you are liable if someone steals your gun and commits a crime with it), that will incentivise more people to get rid of their guns.  Right now, it's extremely unlikely that the original lawful purchaser of a gun used in a crime will be punished.
                  I don't think we'd have to change the constitution; WMDs fall outside of "well-regulated", even if you agree with those who would turn the word "militia" into an inkblot.  Only if the USSC says there's an individual right for WMDs would I then have to support an amendment.

                  In this case, (based upon the possibly inaccurate fragmentary information that's been reported), apparently the mother (who was killed by her son) allegedly was a collector who bought the handguns used to kill her and the schoolkids.  But if she had lived, it could certainly be the case that a law could be passed making her liable for negligent manslaughter for not locking up her guns and making them accessible to a mentally disturbed young man.  Such a law forcing her to keep them under lock and key would not have infringed even a very broadly interpreted right to keep and bear arms.

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