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  •  I turned it in to law enforcement (8+ / 0-)

    I used to work in a health center the next town over from Newtown...some of those children were patients at the practice. My former co-worker lost her son. I have a daughter in first grade. Suffice it to say, this hit home. I just became disgusted and repulsed by my gun after that. I wanted to smash it into pieces with a sledge hammer, but there are laws against that.

    I also came to the realization that the gun was a crutch for me. I bought it for self protection, on the advice of a rape crisis counselor who thought it would help me feel empowered and more safe. It ended up having the opposite effect in a way-I got to the point where I couldn't leave me home without it. I was constantly going through scenarios in my head where I would have to use it to fend off a would-be rapist, and in the process I started to look at every man I came into contact with as a potential rapist. It escalated my sense of fear. Getting rid of it was one of the most therapeutic things I've ever done for myself.

    I am very sorry for what you had to go through as a child, by the way. I didn't have DV in my own home (the person who abused me was a family friend) but I was in a very abusive relationship for 4 years as an adult, so I know that kind despair very well...I know what it's like to have someone hold a gun to your head, and think "just go ahead and pull the trigger and get it over with". It's a very dark place, especially for a child.

    Anyways, to address a few of your points...

    It's already illegal to have an unlicensed handgun in Chicago, NY, DC, Boston, LA.

    Yet young men die, as the idea is there's nothing to live long for.

    This is true, but....

    D.C. Murder Rate For 2012 At 50-Year Low

    New York murder rate at lowest rate in 50 years

    L.A.'s Homicide Rate Lowest In Four Decades

    And surely you have heard of the Boston miracle?

    Now, Chicago is another story...but Chicago is also a bit of an outlier. Much of the violence in Chicago right now is due to some very complex issues in the social fabric of the city. The big issue is apparently the fact that most of the major gangs have been broken up, their leaders imprisoned-so now you have a lot of smaller, factionized groups or "cliques" that are battling each other for dominance. (This is, of course, on top of all the traditional problems of poverty and urban decay that Chicago has to deal with) As a result there is a holding pattern of murder and retaliation, a cycle that repeats itself endlessly. The traditional methods of violence prevention and gang intervention aren't working, because the majority of violence isn't related to gangs, it's inter-personal beef between individuals or small cliques. But guns are undeniably part of the equation in Chicago-because while gun laws are restrictive in Chicago, they are easy to circumvent and rarely prosecuted.

    There is no simple fix to this-not one law, or regulation, or action that will make a difference. And there is no law that will work for the entire country, because we are not monolithic- what works for Chicago isn't necessarily going to work in Oklahoma. And I doubt an outright ban would work anywhere.

    There are some things that would make an across the board difference though-universal background checks, better enforcement, better oversight by the ATF, and we desparately need to fund research. And from that research we can create policy that not only addresses the prolifieration of guns, but domestic violence, poverty, unemployment, and overall lack of opportunities in these communities. And yes, the prison industrial complex, the school to prison pipeline, all of that.

    I think most people here are in complete agreement with you on the need to address the underlying issues that create violence. Where I think we disagree is you don't seem to view the proliferation of guns in these communities as part of the problem...you see it as a symptom, rather than the disease, whereas I see it as a vector that spreads the virus, and makes it go from an outbreak to an epidemic.

    You must work-we must all work-to make a world that is worthy of its children -Pablo Casals Please support TREE Climbers for victims of child sexual abuse and exploitation.

    by SwedishJewfish on Sun Jan 27, 2013 at 11:38:33 AM PST

    [ Parent ]

    •  good reply, as-expected (4+ / 0-)

      I can see your point on "needing" to have the gun, or you felt more vulnerable.
      I've taught firearms to assault survivors, and every person in those classes accepted or rejected firearms based on personal experience, desires, fears.

      When I carried as part of my employment, I'd be situationally aware, and yet willing to put myself into harm's way.
      Badge + gun = piss-off, or face the consequences.

      Now, I dial 9-1-1 and observe to see if I need to be in harm's way.  So far, the constabulary has taken a report, and that's that.  I do not feel burdened with the safety of others.  

      I expect you do as-capable a job of looking at all men as potential rapists without the gun.  
      Maybe better.
      That gut instinct, "I shouldn't be on this elevator" should never be dismissed.  All men are potential rapists, some women too.

      I agree with both points you made, regarding the overall crime rate, and Chicago's unique situation.

      The drop in violence you cite is noted, but debunked here, as an NRA/RWTP.  
      The Chicago PD saying gang violence is due to incarcerating leadership, and chaos theory taking hold, was also challenged as the musing of incompetent and corrupt cops, milking Rahm's Administration for all they can.

      The accepted DKos comment is: more guns ≠ less crime.
      More CCW permits = more crime.  How, why?
      Trayvon Martin.  One Trayvon Martin incident should be enough, and cause to revoke all CCWs nationwide.
      There of course, was the parking lot shooting over loud music.  Verifying all CCW holders are one young black man away from being murderers.

      You, I, and I'll dare say the RKBA group, will agree on an improved background check database, and better application of the NICS system standards.

      I'd like to see a weapons-free divorce system, with Court interview of the former couple to see IF anyone will get their guns back.  No lawyers present, no cooling-off period.
      I want it hot-n-fresh, so when the "I'll fucking kill you bitch" comes out, it's when there's a pre-emptive bailment of the guns.  
      Entering them as evidence later, is unacceptable.

      Crime vectors:
      I can see the vector, having been a traveling instructor throughout the Northeast in the crack era.  
      Cows, apples, corn and Tec-9 drive-bys.  That was the go-to gangsta gun back then.  The poor man's Uzi.
      Luckily, the gun and operator weren't too proficient, and of 32 round fired in front of a movie theater, one teen was hit with a ricochet "in the but-tocks" as Forest Gump would say.

      I can not agree the Tec-9 preceded the arrival of the crack cocaine.  Concurrent, and contributing to the demise of the area, I can certainly agree to.
      Thousands of other firearms in that County, played no role in the spread of drug gangsterism, nor random street violence.
      So, perhaps we'll disagree to the extent that guns proliferate crime, as I feel it's the crime that proliferates the guns.

      Either way, we agree there's a link.

      Thank you for your response.

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