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(This is a repeat diary. I first ran this piece last July, after ths mass shooting in an Aurora, Colorado, movie theater. Sadly, it's still applicable.)

Guns are only objects.

Sometimes they are beautiful objects. The craftsmanship of a Purdey over and under is easily on par with that of a vintage sports car. The sci-fi sensibility of an FN P90 is just jaw-droppingly cool. Even the spare lines of a Glock hold a purposeful energy. There's a deliberate lack of ornamentation. It is as clean as a racing bike and as functional as a pocket watch. Appreciating the skill and purpose woven into these creations of steel, brass and sandalwood doesn't require you to be a misanthrope.

I own a few guns. There's a tiny .25 revolver left to me in the will of a maiden aunt who, so far as I can tell, never removed it from the box she used to bring it home. There's a Colt Navy large enough, heavy enough, and ancient enough to please Roland Deschain. I also have a slender .22 rifle that cost somewhere under $50 in my youth and a trio of shotguns including a model 1898 Marlin that belonged to my grandfather. The broken stock of that last item is literally held together by bailing wire and the deeply blued barrel has dispatched so many squirrels, rabbits and possums over the years that the end of it has thinned to fretwork. This too is a beautiful thing; a working tool, still ready to do the task it was designed for a century after it was made and more than 30 years after the man who handed it to me left this life.

These items have a purpose. I don't think I've harmed a furry critter in several years, but I have sighted down on rabbits, no matter how cute, and knocked quail out of an autumn sky. I have even shot a deer with a rifled slug fired from that old shotgun on a terrifically cold winter morning. Once. It's been a long time, but one of these days, I may take up these old objects and shamble off to lean up against an oak where the squirrels are chattering. Maybe when I have a grandson of my own to take along. I expect my grandfather's gun will be ready when I am.

There's another purpose to these objects, of course. Any one of these guns, even the toy-sized little pistol and my boyhood tin can plinker, would easily serve to kill a human being. I have, thank God, been given the good luck to never have to sight down the barrel toward another person in fear or anger, and the good sense to never do so on a whim. I would very much like to believe that situation will not change. Still, the potential for destruction of life is there—just as it is there with every knife in the kitchen and every car in the driveway.

These, after all, are only objects, and no matter how trite it seems they really don't kill people. What they do is make it easier to kill people. And much, much easier to kill people in numbers.

Numbers like the 12 who died when James Eagan Holmes opened fire in Colorado last week. Numbers like the five who died when Jared Lee Loughner opened fire at Gabby Gifford's "Congress on your corner" event. Numbers like the 23 who died when George Hennard opened fire in a Luby's Restaurant in Killeen, Texas.

Events like these generate understandable grief, considerable shock and immediate outrage. They also bring on outrageous comments from the organization that represents the greatest threat to gun ownership in the United States, the National Rifle Association.

(Continue reading below the fold.)

There was a time when the NRA was the voice of the hunter, the collector and gun owners in general. That's no longer true, and it hasn't been true for a long time. Instead the NRA is a conspiracy factory producing a constant stream of lies, damned lies, and blood-soaked hatred. It doesn't fight against threats to gun owners, it invents them. By ginning up an anti-gun boogeyman composed of one part full-on black helicopter UN lunacy, one part United States equals Germany circa 1933 analogies, and one part that-black-man-wants-to-take-your-guns-and-give-them-to-brown-people, the NRA has waged a campaign of fear against nonexistent persecution. It's an extraordinarily successful campaign, one by which gun manufacturers have completely avoided any hint of an economic downturn and coasted to record sales on a tidal wave of paranoia. The NRA has become one long, strange commercial for gun makers and sellers that operates counter to the good of gun owners in almost every way.

Thanks to the NRA, the American people have a hard time even conceiving of such a thing as a "responsible gun owner." How could they, when everything they see of the people who are supposedly their spokesmen reveals frothing paranoids only interested in declaring that you better buy more bullets, buy more guns, buy, buy, buy before the evil gub'mint takes it all away? For the NRA, it's not just that lack of evidence isn't evidence of lack. For them fact that there's no effort in the administration or in congress to limit access to guns is proof that there is—a super secret, double pinky swear threat that can only be stopped by your pals at the NRA. And buying more guns.

Both the AR-15 and the 100-round ammo drum that Holmes carried into that darkened theater have enjoyed record popularity over the last three years, not because of any need, but specifically because the NRA has promoted them as items soon to be forever banned by some ultimately tricksy double-cross by an anti-gun president. So buy now. Heck, better get two. Act fast and you can get a special deal. Missouri State Representative John McCaherty is auctioning off an AR-15, just like the one Holmes carried. This thoughtful item provided to the congressman as a gift from the National Rifle Association.

With each tragedy like Aurora, the NRA warns that in the wake of such events, gun ownership could be threatened. They sometimes even pause in thier attacks on the president and the Democratic Party to warn about politicization. History shows that they are right. Gun laws have been affected by mass killings. When George Hennard smashed his pickup through the window of a Texas cafeteria he stepped out with two semi-automatic pistols and several spare clips. He walked over the broken glass firing as fast as he could pull the trigger. He chased down and killed 23 people, wounding 20 others before shooting himself. It was the highest death toll of any such incident in the United States and you better believe political action came swiftly. In response to this event, the Texas legislature made it much easier for anyone to get a concealed carry permit for handguns.

I don't blame the events in Aurora on the NRA. I do blame them both for standing in the way of reasonable people taking reasonable action, and for painting gun issues in such stark terms that the public can feel with some vindication that the average gun owner is not much saner than Holmes or Loughner. I blame them for making the serious discussion of gun regulations such a taboo that the only time it's mentioned is in the wake of tragedy.

The world is not made of only slippery slopes. Every traffic law is not sparked by a cadre of radical pedestrians out to put Americans afoot. In the same way, every gun law is not a first step toward leaving a disarmed public cowering before a tyrannical government. If gun owners continue to pretend that the NRA is serving their interests, rather than those of dealers and manufacturers who use fear to fuel sales, we will wake up one morning to discover that we are completely shut out from the national conversation. Deservedly so.

After all guns are only objects, not sacred objects. That old Marlin is just a thing that belonged to my grandfather, a lot less important than the lessons he taught me. Maybe some restrictions on the availability or capabilities of gun or accessories can reduce the odds of another Aurora or Columbine or Killean. Maybe not. But the conversation is going to happen, and if gun owners want to be part of it, they need to step away from the crazies.

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Comment Preferences

  •  excellent diary (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    blueyedace2, commonmass, LeftyAce

    under siege?

    what we gonna fight'em with? we ain't got no guns.

    ...oh- that's not exactly the posture we're...
    crap.. never mind.

  •  I rec'd it before and I'll rec it now. nt (7+ / 0-)

    "If you don't sin, then Jesus died for nothing!" (on a sign at a Mardi Gras parade in New Orleans)

    by ranger995 on Mon Dec 17, 2012 at 02:23:46 PM PST

  •  My Dad & older brother years ago, had maybe (15+ / 0-)

    12-15 guns----all varieties of shotguns and rifles, all designed for hunting.  This is they they did constantly while living in rural NH back 40-50 years ago.  

    No pistols.

    Treated each one as a treasure...and use deach one for various situations .

    It would never have dawned on them to have something that could shoot more than 3-4 rounds....no need.

    There are sportsmen; and there are gun owners---and they are not necessarily one & the same.

  •  I listened to some right wing spokesman (17+ / 0-)

    On BBC This afternoon arguing against restricting assault weapons because " he could have killed just as many with a couple rifles and a couple of handguns."

    And I thought . . . This is supposed to be an argument against gun control?  Sounds like a good reason for going beyond assault weapons.  Jeez.

    I don't think I belong here any longer.  Here =earth.

    "Let's see what fresh fuckwittery these dolts can contrive to torment themselves with this time." -- Iain Banks, The Hydrogen Sonata

    by Rikon Snow on Mon Dec 17, 2012 at 02:25:38 PM PST

  •  Yes Excellent Diary (18+ / 0-)

    It is time to start driving a wedge between responsible gun owners and the crazies.

    If you want something other than the obvious to happen; you've got to do something other than the obvious. Douglas Adams

    by trillian on Mon Dec 17, 2012 at 02:26:50 PM PST

    •  Responsible gun owners already recoil from crazies (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      bontemps2012, DvCM

      Really, nobody wants to be around those men and women fantasizing about tactical situations and gun battles in the street.  They're dangerous.  The guys with the high volume magazines and a desire to see how many rounds they can fire in a few seconds (with just a ragged old target that there is now way to tell if they hit it) can have the range to themselves.  You don't have to tell us they are not our friends.

      •  Responsible gun owners have no control (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        snowwoman

        over mentally deranged, delusional, hallucinating fellow citizens.

        The waking nightmares of full blown paranoid schizophrenia -- beyond all reason.

        No level of training, locking up guns in safes or other NRA pablum will address the problem of these 50,000 Americans getting their hands on weapons when they go mad.

        "We have nothing to apologize for." NRA 12/14/2012

        by bontemps2012 on Mon Dec 17, 2012 at 04:11:04 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

  •  Paranoia is its own vindication. (31+ / 0-)

    Anyone who needs an AR-15 to feel 'safe' has bigger problems than a gun can solve.

    "No special skill, no standard attitude, no technology, and no organization - no matter how valuable - can safely replace thought itself."

    by xaxnar on Mon Dec 17, 2012 at 02:29:27 PM PST

  •  Speaking of which... (23+ / 0-)
     By ginning up an anti-gun boogeyman composed of one part full-on black helicopter UN lunacy
    I asked one person I was debating if it was OK that the Aurora shooter had collected 6,000 rounds of ammunition and that this wasn't noticed until AFTER he shot up a movie theater?

    He responded that there was no way someone could do that and his theory was the CIA had helped the shooter acquire all that ammunition...

    Pure lunacy.

    How do you have a conversation with someone like that? How do you compromise and bargain and come to common ground, when their ground is imaginary?

    "The marriage fight is over when we say it's over, and it's over when we win."—Dan Savage

    by Scott Wooledge on Mon Dec 17, 2012 at 02:29:54 PM PST

  •  Why is that man shooting those dogs!?!!? (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Boris49, commonmass
  •  Ask Some Of These People... (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    laurnj, commonmass, blueyedace2, a2nite

    ...why the 2nd Amendment means what they say it does.


    I knew she was the gal for me as soon as she laid her eyes on me. Right on me shoulder, she did. Popped the buggers right out her head, and laid em on me shoulder. She's a sweet heart, that gal.

    by glb3 on Mon Dec 17, 2012 at 02:31:21 PM PST

    •  Supreme Injustices (5+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      armd, a2nite, karma13612, bontemps2012, mgoodm

      Justices Alito, John G. Roberts Jr., Antonin Scalia, Anthony M. Kennedy, and Clarence Thomas are our problem, not just on gun issues, but also abortion and marriage equality. It matters who is in the White House. A conservative majority on the Supreme Court is holding us back.

      I knew she was the gal for me as soon as she laid her eyes on me. Right on me shoulder, she did. Popped the buggers right out her head, and laid em on me shoulder. She's a sweet heart, that gal.

      by glb3 on Mon Dec 17, 2012 at 03:17:37 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  NRA/Gun Lobby Won't Fight Head-On This Time... (20+ / 0-)

    Instead, we'll soon be seeing them declare themselves willing to support "responsible" gun legislation in response to NewTown that doesn't "unreasonbly" infringe on gun-owners second amendment rights, without however giving meaningful specifics of how this would significantly change existing laws.

    Their true strategy will be to slow down rather than entirely stop the progress of any proposed legislation to allow the wave of public passion to dissipate, and meanwhile they'll work to water down and sew so many loopholes into any proposed new legislation that little to no meaningful net change is achieved, EXCEPT that the NRA and gun lobby will now be able to point to the new legislation and proclaim: SEE THAT! We DID support reasonble gun legislation in response to the NewTown tragedy.

    •  co-option ahead, co-option behind (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      blueyedace2, Eyesbright, Sylv

      well described there.

      We can't count on the reepers to implode in 2014, the public opinion is shifting fast if you gage by the attention paid to the issue in reaction, right now.

      Whether that means a shift in the political polling or not, smart polling, wise choices,  and a good Ouija board will be necessary to win the house in 2014.

       

      This machine kills Fascists.

      by KenBee on Mon Dec 17, 2012 at 02:47:36 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  they will make sure to get language... (0+ / 0-)

      into any law that is specific to certain kinds of weapons with loopholes big enough to drive a truck through so all gunmakers have to do is shorten the barrel by an inch or some stupid shit. We're already starting to hear it with people asking "well, how do you define an assault rifle?"

      I'v already sent an email to my congressman asking him to resist anything short of a full ban on assault rifles with no hedging.

      "There is one rule for the industrialist and that is: Make the best quality of goods possible at the lowest cost possible, paying the highest wages possible." -Henry Ford

      by sixeight120bpm on Mon Dec 17, 2012 at 06:20:20 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Mark - The stock on your grandfather's gun (5+ / 0-)

    is held together with "baling" wire, not "bailing" wire.  I would love to see your aunt's .25.  The closest I ever came to buying a gun was a cute little .25 I saw in a pawn shop - not because I wanted a gun, but because I thought it was so adorable.  I went home to think about it, but when I went back to the shop it was gone.  Probably best.

    Sounds like your gun collection holds as much sentimental value for you as practical value.  My neighbor has his grandfather's revolver.  I don't think he's ever shot it, but it would be the last thing he would ever consider parting with.  

    Strange how deadly weapons can become such sentimental objects.

    "In this world of sin and sorrow there is always something to be thankful for; as for me, I rejoice that I am not a Republican." - H. L. Mencken

    by SueDe on Mon Dec 17, 2012 at 02:33:05 PM PST

    •  Thank's, Sue (7+ / 0-)

      I'm afraid to fire the .25. First, becase the thing is so darn clean there in it's little sateen-lined box. Second, because it's so tiny I'm afraid shooting it would hurt my hand.

      Aunt Martha was actually my wife's aunt, who had polio as a child and suffered from some difficuly in walking and standing. She was a tiny little woman. The gun was well-sized for her, but I'm glad she never found a reason to use it.

    •  The thing is (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      bontemps2012, SueDe

      They'll be sentimental object even if they don't work.

      That old shotgun is a case in point. I wouldn't want to be anywhere around if you try shooting it, it's likely to turn into shrapnel.

      That doesn't mean you can't keep it, or hang it on the wall, or treat it as a family heirloom. Just that it might not be the best gun to take on a hunting trip.

  •  No one who doesn't need one for their lawful (9+ / 0-)

    line of work should be able to acquire or possess a firearm whose purpose is to kill large numbers of people quickly or tactically take out a large object.

    Which excludes, I would assume, conventional shotguns, single-shot rifles and low-capacity pistols. I.e. the types of guns that the overwhelming majority of gun owners would need to do the sorts of things you can legitimately do with a gun outside of law enforcement, security and the military.

    But which would include machine guns, sniper rifles, gatling guns, high-capacity pistols and cartridges, etc. I.e. the types of guns that are legitimately used by law enforcement, security and the military and ONLY these.

    "Liberty without virtue would be no blessing to us" - Benjamin Rush, 1777

    by kovie on Mon Dec 17, 2012 at 02:34:45 PM PST

  •  We should listen and take note of cries for help (5+ / 0-)

    The only people talking about banning guns are the gun fetishists.  Of course, they're lying when they claim other people insist on it after every gun death, and asking for proof just makes them double down on the lies.  But that's standard for the right.  (I see a few here on dKos, but this is hardly the mainstream media and no one here is in office to propose a law.)

    I originally dismissed this as more whiney unhinged right-wing political correctness that we saw during the election.  But at this point, I think it's more than that:

    It's a cry for help.  No one would bring up banning guns so often and in such dire circumstances except those afraid of themselves and what they might do.

    So even though I don't think we should ban guns,  we have to listen to them.  We have to put their proposal on the table.  The discussion of severe restrictions must be included in the response to the tragedy at Sandy Hook Elementary.

    "What doesn't have credibility today is the truth." -- Bill Moyers, The Daily Show 6/22/05

    by Baron Dave on Mon Dec 17, 2012 at 02:34:46 PM PST

    •  If you had read (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      VectorScalar

      any of the postings on gun regulation on today's page, you would know that yes, a good number of your progressive post-mates are strong advocates for banning most fire arms in the US.

      It's not just the fetishists ...

      •  All private guns =versus= these 20 children (0+ / 0-)

        If you could go back to last Thursday and borrow Harry Potter's wand, would you make that trade ???

        Would anyone at Sandy Hook or Newtown not make that trade ?

        And what about these guys.................

        "We have nothing to apologize for." NRA 12/14/2012

        by bontemps2012 on Mon Dec 17, 2012 at 04:20:48 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

  •  anyone who thinks that owning guns (20+ / 0-)

    Will save us from a tyrannical government is living in a fantasy.  The government already out guns us.  The only way to prevent the tyranny they fear is through open and honest elections.  But that fear is ginned up by the same people who spend their time busily taking away our rights to vote, who tell us that the black helicopters are coming, who tell us that there's a war on Christmas, who tell us that illegal immigrants are stealing our elections, who tell us that it's unfair to blame a tool for the carnage, and who believe that taxing the rich less will fill the hole in our economy that was caused by taxing rich people less.

    •  So true.. (4+ / 0-)

      I have often said the same thing.

      The days of the 2ND Amendment where your single shot muzzle  loader, aginst a soldiers single shot muzzleloader might have a chance are long gone.

      Anyone who thinks their semi-auto pistol puts them on equal ground and will protect them from the might of the modern millitary is seriously deluded.

      The black hawk helicopter, or trained body armour wearing full auto rifle soldier is going to win every time.

      My dog can eat a whole watermelon.

      by Cornbread Maxi on Mon Dec 17, 2012 at 02:47:58 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  The point that armed citizens would have no chance (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Jon Says

        against a modern military always makes me wonder why our own military has been unsuccessful in Viet Nam, Iraq and Afghanistan.  Are they just doing it wrong?

        •  No, but you are (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          science nerd

          The factual history is clear: Our military has been quite successful in engagements in all three places.  The reason we had trouble closing in Vietnam and Afghanistan is that our enemies routinely fled to neighboring countries where we could not go after them.  

          In each case, though, when they came at us with their guns, they learned the hard way exactly what an American soldier could do (with air support to boot).  That's why in all three cases, they resorted to leaving traps and bombs, instead of using guns.  Insurgents now use IEDs and RPGs, and hide the rest of the time.

          So, neighboring countries and high explosives--- two options we Americans don't have.  One option we do have, that has proven successful around the world, including here, is democracy, with non-violent uprisings when that fails.  The one time people used guns, well, we all know how that turned out.  

          Conservatives need to realize that their Silent Moral Majority is neither silent, nor moral, nor a majority.

          by nominalize on Mon Dec 17, 2012 at 04:45:46 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

    •  The head of Gun Owners of America (11+ / 0-)

      was just on Hardball saying that he wanted to have assault weapons so that he can overthrow the government at some point when he thinks they are doing something that he doesn't like.

      I don't believe that this man's threshold could be said to be quite as high as "tyranny".

      •  Treason is as treason does... (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        mgoodm, cfm, science nerd

        And telling the public that they should be armed for a revolution against our duely constituted government is surely treason.

      •  Gee, delusional. (0+ / 0-)

        Not hallucinating. (There's a difference.)

        "We have nothing to apologize for." NRA 12/14/2012

        by bontemps2012 on Mon Dec 17, 2012 at 04:23:18 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

      •  What is interesting to me (0+ / 0-)

        I've owned guns for years but don't have any assault rifles.

        When I walked into a gun store as a kid the only semi automatic military style rifles were, well military surplus.

        Remember the Dirty Harry Movies?? That caused all sorts of people to want a 44 magnum. My grandad who traded guns laughed that they doubled in price after the movie.

        Then there was a John Wayne Movie. I can't remember which one, but he used a fully automatic Mac 10 machine gun in it.

        Not long after that , they offered a semi auto version of that.

        As images of Uzi's filled the screen during the Yom Kippur War US gun manufacturers starting making semi auto Uzis for the commercial market.

        Then with our endless wars a semi auto M16 and AK were soon to follow.

        The deal is there really wasn't that much DEMAND or NEED for these guns, but since they had become famous thru events or movies manufacturers starting making them and marketing them.

    •  I saw a political cartoon the other day... (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      myboo

      can't for the life of me find it now, but it had a scoreboard with "Tyrannical Governments Overthrown" on one side and "Gun related deaths" on the other. the score was  1 to so many hash marks it ran off the page. The caption was "We'll talk about gun control when the score is tied."

      "There is one rule for the industrialist and that is: Make the best quality of goods possible at the lowest cost possible, paying the highest wages possible." -Henry Ford

      by sixeight120bpm on Mon Dec 17, 2012 at 06:25:04 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  i'd accept your say so... (8+ / 0-)

    if saner heads are to prevail, then your diary is proof enough for me that you could lead the discussion.
    i too have a gun, somewhere. i used to have a few shotguns but the wife didn't like the idea of them in the house with very young children. i could agree then and have no regrets. but i'd like to share a story...
    years ago my cousin came up for a visit and insisted we shoot my .357 ruger at targets. i told him that what you saw on tv in the way of accuracy was just about all hollywood. i bet him $50 that between the two of us we couldn't hit the 8" clay pot 25 yards away with 6 shots each. there was a time when i could do fairly well...but we had to shatter the pot with a thrown rock. i didn't make him pay up.
    moral of the story: there is some validity to arming yourself for protection. but overall, it won't be such a success for most folks.

  •  "American gun owners are under siege" (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    lgmcp, reflectionsv37

    You bet your Kossack ass they are!

    Get your goddamned guns out of my church. This means you.

    by commonmass on Mon Dec 17, 2012 at 02:38:38 PM PST

  •  Responsible gun owners... (19+ / 0-)

    are soon going to discover that they may end up being left out of the upcoming discussion on reasonable gun laws. In the past, had they supported reasonable restrictions, they would be part of the discussion. Now, it is the majority of the population who is going to decide what is reasonable. And that may not sit well with some responsible gun owners.

    I've owned guns in the past and support a persons right to own them, but with that right, comes responsibility. Here's a few ideas I personally believe would help.

    1) Require all gun owners to be licensed. That includes passing a written test and a proficiency test just like we have to do for automobiles. There will be a fee for this license to support the government cost of tracking and issuing these licenses. Included in the requirements is a psychological evaluation to ensure you are competent to own a firearm. This license must be renewed every 5 years and you must pass the same test and a psychological test every 5 years to be licensed.

    2) Each and every gun will be registered and you will pay a annual registration fee just like you do for each of your cars. All transfers must be handled by a dealer who will ensure that the person receiving the weapon is properly licensed. Failure to do so will result in stiff penalties including jail time.

    3) New requirements will make it the responsibility of the gun owner to keep his firearms safe and properly locked to prevent their children and others from accessing the weapons. If your gun shows up in a murder due too your negligence in properly securing your weapons, the gun owner will share in the responsibility and again face stiff penalties.

    4) All magazines capable of holding more than 10 rounds of ammunition will be immediately banned. After a grace period allowing for those magazines to be turned in, anyone caught with one in their possession will face mandatory jail time.

    5) A tax will be levied on all ammunition purchased to help alleviate the social impacts firearms have on our society. This will be implemented much in the way taxes on cigarettes and alcohol are levied and at the same proportions. The cost of ammunition will be insignificant compared to the amount of taxes on the ammunition.

    These are 5 simple ideas that would go a long way in helping to curb the ongoing slaughter in this country. The fees collected from licensing gun owners will fully support the cost of tracking the licenses and the taxes collected on the sale of ammunition should be used for education and to support an extension to the Affordable Care Act to provide free mental health services as part of the ACA.

    Personally, I don't see why responsible gun owners would oppose these regulations.

    Never attribute to malice that which can be adequately explained by stupidity.

    by reflectionsv37 on Mon Dec 17, 2012 at 02:52:41 PM PST

    •  Great list. (5+ / 0-)

      I have been pushing for #3 for along time.

      The number of times a gun kept out and loaded for "your protection" is actually used for this purpose vs. the number that are stolen because they are out must shockingly uneven. Unless your gun is under your direct control (ie in your hand, or on you if you have a short dick and need the mental extension) it should be unloaded and locked. No exceptions. You fuck this up you are criminally responsible, and loose the privilege of owning a gun. Period. If your stolen gun is used in a crime, you go to jail. Period. No exceptions.

      I have several guns, mostly handed down family pieces. They are individually locked, and locked in a safe. Ammo is locked in a lock box, in a separate locked building.

      That, is responsible gun ownership.

      My dog can eat a whole watermelon.

      by Cornbread Maxi on Mon Dec 17, 2012 at 03:03:21 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  There are gun owners at DK who have argued (3+ / 0-)

        against this, believe it or not.

        202-224-3121 to Congress in D.C. USE it! You can tell how big a person is by what it takes to discourage them. "We're not perfect, but they're nuts."--Barney Frank 01/02/2012

        by cany on Mon Dec 17, 2012 at 03:10:15 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  There are fools in every crowd. (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          cany, reflectionsv37

          They are dead ass wrong.

          My dog can eat a whole watermelon.

          by Cornbread Maxi on Mon Dec 17, 2012 at 03:19:09 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  The suggestions for gun control legislation (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Cornbread Maxi, reflectionsv37

            by reflectionsv37 go way beyond any legislation currently on the books in Canada.

            #1 and #4 are the only suggested laws that are in place in Canada.

            Last year 200 people died in Canada from a homicide by gun.

            Over 10,000 in the US.

            Canada has a per capita ownership rate of firearms that is approximately 1/3 of the U.S.

            The issue isn't just the firearms; it's a cultural thing also.

            •  Yeah, Canada can handle their guns (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              cany

              We can't.  So if we need more stringent laws than they do, we brought it upon ourselves.

              Conservatives need to realize that their Silent Moral Majority is neither silent, nor moral, nor a majority.

              by nominalize on Mon Dec 17, 2012 at 04:48:48 PM PST

              [ Parent ]

            •  I'm not sure why Canada's laws... (2+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              Cornbread Maxi, snowwoman

              are important here. Obviously, Canada doesn't have the problem we have here. I don't believe any responsible gun owner would object to these regulations. We have many rights in this country but with rights come responsibility.

              Never attribute to malice that which can be adequately explained by stupidity.

              by reflectionsv37 on Mon Dec 17, 2012 at 05:50:19 PM PST

              [ Parent ]

            •  I am in full agreement with . . . (2+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              reflectionsv37, snowwoman
              The issue isn't just the firearms; it's a cultural thing also.
              But over the the course of time, culture can change. 50 years ago, you were expected to provide ashtrays in your home for smokers, even if you yourself didn't smoke. That culture changed, and that change was instrumental in my own quitting smoking 19 years ago.

              With the right leadership and with public support, our gun culture can change. In most matters of culture, we are not that different from our Canadian neighbors.

              No law we might pass in 2013 will magically curtail gun violence. That will take time. But if we don't start, it won't ever happen.

              Note to Boehner and McConnell: "You don't need a weatherman to know which way the wind blows." --Bob Dylan-- (-7.25, -6.21)

              by Tim DeLaney on Mon Dec 17, 2012 at 07:00:09 PM PST

              [ Parent ]

        •  Well one of them, Pete Cortez... (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Cornbread Maxi

          has finally been banned. Good riddence to him!!

          Never attribute to malice that which can be adequately explained by stupidity.

          by reflectionsv37 on Mon Dec 17, 2012 at 03:32:05 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  Really? he was so annoying (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            reflectionsv37

            Whenever people would mention a personal anecdote, he'd badger them about details... I doubt he'd be satisfied with names and socials, to be honest.  

            Conservatives need to realize that their Silent Moral Majority is neither silent, nor moral, nor a majority.

            by nominalize on Mon Dec 17, 2012 at 04:49:33 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  Personally... (0+ / 0-)

              I believe he was a paid troll by some gun advocacy group. He claimed he was a progressive, but when you check his comment history and ratings history, the only real diaries he ever comment on were gun related and a very few on space. Guns and space... Obviously 2 of the most important topics worth discussing on Dkos.

              Never attribute to malice that which can be adequately explained by stupidity.

              by reflectionsv37 on Mon Dec 17, 2012 at 05:53:06 PM PST

              [ Parent ]

      •  Protection guns are used for suicide. (4+ / 0-)

        The ratio is on the order of 44:1 according to the FBI. 15,000 suicides a year. 9,000 homicides with very few of these justified by home defense.

        The "gun enthusiasts" rarely know what is happening.

        They are like the Romney crowd toward the tail end of the 2012 election. Lost in innumeracy, ignorant of the basic statistics.

        "We have nothing to apologize for." NRA 12/14/2012

        by bontemps2012 on Mon Dec 17, 2012 at 04:35:29 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

    •  Nobody "needs" more than a 5-shot magazine. (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      sixeight120bpm, reflectionsv37

      And there is also no reason for hunters using anything but a bolt-action type rifle. Ban all sales of new semi-auto weapons, beyond six-shot pistols.

      The bolt-action hunting gun encourages re-aiming between shots.

      A nice safety feature, that one.

      "We have nothing to apologize for." NRA 12/14/2012

      by bontemps2012 on Mon Dec 17, 2012 at 04:31:27 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  here here (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        bontemps2012

        I'v been trying to think up a reason for needing more than one round in the weapon at a time, and all I can come up with is bad aim, or hunting angry bears with a pistol. the first is remedied by the kind of education that should be necessary to own a "self defense" weapon in the first place, the second is probably a bad idea.

        "There is one rule for the industrialist and that is: Make the best quality of goods possible at the lowest cost possible, paying the highest wages possible." -Henry Ford

        by sixeight120bpm on Mon Dec 17, 2012 at 06:35:01 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

      •  The only reason I picked 10... (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        bontemps2012

        is that there are already so many handguns on the streets that have 10 round magazines. I don't want to see a law that causes millions of firearms to suddenly one day become illegal. Doing so, would likely defeat a good deal of support for gun regulations.

        It's registration and taxes on ammunition that could make the most difference. Keeping people who have mental issues from owning guns should be the major priority and banning large capacity magazines that can hold up to 100 rounds, is essential!

        Never attribute to malice that which can be adequately explained by stupidity.

        by reflectionsv37 on Mon Dec 17, 2012 at 07:34:15 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

    •  Excellently and eminently sane. (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      reflectionsv37

      That's exactly it. Automobiles and driving are licensed and regulated every which way, in every country in the world. It's accepted. It's even welcomed as a public good. You never hear cries of outrage, or people frothing about tyrants trampling on the right to total unfettered mobility.

      Driving is regulated because it's dangerous. So why shouldn't gun ownership be too, in exactly the same way?

      Just do it. Maybe a generation down the line, everyone will see that it makes sense.

      Lay off the footwork and throw a punch! ~ Joe Bageant

      by gotgat54 on Tue Dec 18, 2012 at 08:59:45 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  why not liability insurance? (5+ / 0-)

    Guns are so dangerous to society that society needs to protect itself from the tremendous cost by requiring those who own them to be able to bear to cost to their victims. The same reasoning that exists for car owners exists for gun owners i.e. the danger of the product affects citizens not connected to to gun or car owner.

    IMO, every sale of a gun should be accompanied by proof of insurance before it's consumated.

    America could have chosen to be the worlds doctor, or grocer. We choose instead to be her policeman. pity

    by cacamp on Mon Dec 17, 2012 at 02:53:04 PM PST

    •  I know of no... (0+ / 0-)

      ...jurisdiction in the US where car ownership requires insurance.

      Most (maybe all now?) jurisdictions in the US do require insurance if the vehicle is operated on public roads. In all jurisdictions I'm aware of, cars can be transported on carriers on public roads without insurance on the car itself (the truck, regardless of if it's carrying any cars, needs insurance though when operated on a public road).

      You are generally free to store and operate a car on private property without a license or insurance of any sort. Some cities have rules, aimed at preventing the eyesore of abandoned/dilapidated cars, that limit the presence of unlicensed vehicles on private property somewhat (such as prohibiting such vehicles outside an enclosed building or prohibiting them from locations visible from the street or sidewalk).

      Virtually anyone (even felons) with minimal effort can get a driver's license and drive a car on public roads in every state in the union and in almost any municipality within those states (there a few towns where cars are effectively banned).

      A resident of any state can drive in any other state using their "home state" driver's license.

      There are estimated to be roughly the same number of firearms as registered vehicles in the US. As well, roughly the same number of people die due to firearms induced injuries as die from vehicle induced injuries in the US each year. However, about 2/3 (table 2) of the firearms deaths are INTENTIONAL and SELF INFLICTED (i.e., there is no "innocent victim" or "accident" involved).

      [I personally discount the suicide deaths as I believe that everyone has the right to do with their own body what they wish and, without firearms, many of these suicides would likely still happen by other means. I understand that not everyone believes that one has the right to do what they wish with their own body.]

      If restrictions, and access, similar to that of cars were being proposed, quite a few gun owners would sign on to such a campaign as they would welcome the increased access and flexibility.

      However, similar rules for exercising other rights (voting, speaking, assembling, religion etc...) enumerated in the Constitution have not met with favor with the Supreme Court, so there is some question if such limitations would be acceptable if applied to firearms w/o first repealing the Second Amendment.

      •  that's a specious argument (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        science nerd

        except for a few museum pieces cars use roads so I suppose we can stipulate not insuring race cars etc is ok since their small numbers are not a public threat.

        As for felons getting drivers licences I acknowlege there are some differences that will need acommodation. The laws won't be exactly the same but the principle will be.

        I'm a hunter and user of guns, I live rurally and need guns for several reasons but I'd be willing to insure my guns as a way to help society deal with this problem.

        America could have chosen to be the worlds doctor, or grocer. We choose instead to be her policeman. pity

        by cacamp on Mon Dec 17, 2012 at 04:45:13 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

    •  Spot on (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      snowwoman

      Not to say as if I thought that could happen in policy and practice, but as a suggestion, I think that's spot on. R. O. F. L

      The point, I think, is: Perhaps we must remind gun owners that social responsibility is an indelibly necessary part of gun ownership. I know there must be plenty of gun owners who understand that. I'm not sure if quite enough do, at this time.

  •  No one gives a shit or will ever give a shit (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    bontemps2012

    about grandpa's hunting rifle. There is zero reason for it to be a part of the conversation. It's kind of rediculous to keep bringing it up. Grandpa is quiet about his rifle.

  •  The NRA won't take phone calls. Their existence is (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    bontemps2012

    threatened. It's threatened by their own lack of decency. They know that this is the "Big One" everybody knowd has been coming for some time now. And the NRA has nothing to say. And they won't take our phone calls. The NRA is done.

    Slow thinkers - keep right

    by Dave the Wave on Mon Dec 17, 2012 at 03:11:42 PM PST

  •  Excellent post. (0+ / 0-)

    The NRA has fallen a long way from where it once existed.

    The lack of a gun owner's association for the advancement of rational, gun safety and proponents of federal gun registration and safety guidelines (as well as public discourse and education) is something this country really does need.

    All gun owners are not represented by the NRA.  And I would wager that many of those that are would flock to a more responsible national organization, if one existed.

    Many of the NRA's members see that organization as really the only mechanism for protecting their right to possess fire arms, while many others are actually forced into membership in order to become members of private shooting clubs and utilize private gun ranges.

  •  We were (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    bontemps2012

    raised around guns all of lives and we just didn't think to go into where they were kept and take them and use them on anybody.  They were hidden but not kept locked up or anything.  In the time I was a kid you didn't use them to take out your frustration on anybody or if you got angry @ anybody for some stupid reason to go get it and shoot someone.  We were really stupid.  Wow, we could have been in crazy danger considering my sister who lived in the house with us @ the time is a a hot head and still is a hot head.  The access was just so easy.  Right now, she has a son, that if his wife left him, I'm sure he would shoot her.

    •  You have never experienced hallucinations (0+ / 0-)

      mixed with paranoid delusions.

      You missed the 17 in 100,000 odds of falling into paranoid schizophrenia.

      You know about "hot head" tempers. You know that jealousy can kill. You take a sensible approach to gun safety.

      How would you deal with madness ?

      "We have nothing to apologize for." NRA 12/14/2012

      by bontemps2012 on Mon Dec 17, 2012 at 04:47:54 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Thank you (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    bontemps2012, nominalize

    Not exactly being a gun enthusiast, I have learned a lot from your diary.  Thank you and I look forward to the next chapter.

  •  Paranoids (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    bontemps2012
    ...frothing paranoids only interested in declaring that you better buy more bullets, buy more guns, buy, buy, buy before the evil gub'mint takes it all away...
    And while you're at it, make sure elementary school teachers all have a loaded semi under the desk!  All teachers better pack heat, or else...!

    (well, that'll sell guns, won't it?)

    Evolution IS Intelligent Design!

    by msirt on Mon Dec 17, 2012 at 03:35:52 PM PST

  •  If responsible gun owners, and I am one, want (5+ / 0-)

    to be able to keep their guns unhindered and unharassed, then they are the ones who need to raise their voices the loudest, to get state and federal governments to put a lid on the crazyness that is being pushed by the NRA, the Republicans, the secessionists, the right wing militias etc.

  •  I'm a gun owner and have been since my grandpa (0+ / 0-)

    gave me an old 12 ga single when I was about 10.  I still have it and it is as good to go as it ever was.  I've used guns for every purpose they were intended...and after my days in Vietnam I've shot a very few quail, but never fired one again at any other living creature...and nothing for more than 20 years.  My choice.

    I loathe the NRA in it's current role in our society.  No "sportsman" needs an assault rifle in America, and anyone using one for self-protection is likely to destroy the neighborhood.  

    Still, I think it needs to be said that with the level of violent crime in this country, it's understandable that people want to arm themselves.  In my town, it's almost nuts to go downtown after dark.  Rape and stabbing on the police station corner...and the list goes on.   People accosted walking from a restaurant to their car.  

    I support change and I support the right to keep and bear arms.  I think we can do it.
     

    The longer I live, the clearer I perceive how unmatchable a compliment one pays when he says of a man "he has the courage to utter his convictions." Mark Twain

    by Persiflage on Mon Dec 17, 2012 at 04:30:21 PM PST

  •  Rec'd for: (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Cornbread Maxi, science nerd
    "There was a time when the NRA was the voice of the hunter, the collector and gun owners in general. That's no longer true, and it hasn't been true for a long time. Instead the NRA is a conspiracy factory producing a constant stream of lies, damned lies, and blood-soaked hatred. It doesn't fight against threats to gun owners, it invents them. By ginning up an anti-gun boogeyman composed of one part full-on black helicopter UN lunacy, one part United States equals Germany circa 1933 analogies, and one part that-black-man-wants-to-take-your-guns-and-give-them-to-brown-people, the NRA has waged a campaign of fear against nonexistent persecution. It's an extraordinarily successful campaign, one by which gun manufacturers have completely avoided any hint of an economic downturn and coasted to record sales on a tidal wave of paranoia. The NRA has become one long, strange commercial for gun makers and sellers that operates counter to the good of gun owners in almost every way."
    My thoughts exactly and what I've been saying for some time.

    "I'm totally pro-choice in the matter of abortion. But of course I'm also so radically pro-life that I think every person from birth onward must have full and affordable access to healthcare." - Gail Collins

    by gritsngumbo on Mon Dec 17, 2012 at 04:39:35 PM PST

  •  Deer Hunting With Jesus (0+ / 0-)

    Some of this sounds very similar?

  •  Damned sad (0+ / 0-)

    that this piece is just as relevant as when written. Maybe, with this mass killing of small children, there will be a change. We can only hope so.

    Common Sense is not Common

    by RustyBrown on Mon Dec 17, 2012 at 05:10:06 PM PST

  •  Paranoid schizophrenia. (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    snowwoman

    Anders Behring in Norway received this diagnosis. Jared Loughner is another. Where a mass murderer targets a group of strangers with a one-off attack, this is the place to start.

    Most of these killers are driven by this mental defect. They hear voices, imagine schemes aimed to destroy them. Suicide at the end is the delusional attacker's way to stop the carnage.

    This is a well analyzed condition:

    -- 17 per 100,000 people over their lifetimes

    -- 50,000 Americans, total

    The disease presents again and again with mass murders, worldwide. The individual connections vary and they are not straightforward. Also, milder stages of schizotypal disorders are often misdiagnosed: they are tagged as Asperger's or as developmental problems.

    Attacks on groups of strangers have been connected to paranoid hallucinations since research in the 1960s.

    Usually, however, the damage from this illness is turned inward. Suicide is all too common. The more severe cases go off into psychosis with voices, delusional ideation, and extreme hatred or fear directed at otherwise ordinary entities in the environment.

    Keep in mind that this disease does not have to present in severe forms; then the schizophrenia can be managed:

    Paranoid schizophrenia is one of several types of schizophrenia, a chronic mental illness in which a person loses touch with reality (psychosis). The classic features of paranoid schizophrenia are having delusions and hearing things that aren't real.

    With paranoid schizophrenia, your ability to think and function in daily life may be better than with other types of schizophrenia. You may not have as many problems with memory, concentration or dulled emotions. Still, paranoid schizophrenia is a serious, lifelong condition that can lead to many complications, including suicidal behavior.

    -- Mayo Clinic, describing moderate paranoid schizophrenia

    A young male suffering an intense paranoid schizophrenia episode can become dangerous in a second. If you put a loaded assault rifle into the hands of every paranoid schizophrenic, you would have to expect a numbers of those triggers to be pulled.

    Paranoid delusions and hallucinations do not fit well with ready access to guns. Dealing with this problem is likely incompatible with running a $25-billion-a-year gun industry.

    So... the right wing propaganda mills and their Talking Head speakers tell us that "motivation" and "bullying" are the causes underlying mass murders. "Mass murderers are seeking attention" is another too-simple dishonesty.

    They lie. They are earning seats on an express train to Hell.

    Paranoid schizophrenia is an organic disease. The schizophrenia is often manageable, but we are foolish to ignore the risks where paranoia gets piped into waking nightmares.

    Putting guns in their hands ??? That's what we are doing now. Other countries think we're all crazy.

    "We have nothing to apologize for." NRA 12/14/2012

    by bontemps2012 on Mon Dec 17, 2012 at 05:27:39 PM PST

    •  Yes And (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      bontemps2012

      I would add that one never expects they mig ht be living next door or even in the same house as a paranoid schizophrenic until something serious,happens.  At least that was my experience.  I was living with a friend and her 22 year old son who had a psychotic break and tried to kill his girlfriend.  With a knife .  No gun available.  But he was delusional, and I know now it could have been me that was repeatedly stabbed by him.  This was a nice man from an educated, privileged family.  Good, kind, progressive people.  

      •  Maybe the worst of trying to respond (0+ / 0-)

        as a society is that the early stages of paranoid schizophrenia are almost always misdiagnosed.

        I say "almost always" because these patients present with histories that reflect normal/behavioral readings for what is going on. At 17 per 100,000 population for paranoid schizophrenia, front line practitioners are not trained to recognize early stages of the condition.

        The front line practitioners at schools are psychologists, not psychiatrists. Same for medical doctors who do not have the time or the specialized training to establish what is going on with these patients. They rarely call in psychiatric support.

        Easier to say "Asperger's" or "developmental."

        This is an organic Axis I mental disease. Usually it develops over a period of years, as long as five or ten years.

        Thank you for your comment. This would make a good diary. Flesh it out to 1,000 words or more. Highlight the difficulty presented by severe mental illness.

        "Thank God It Was A Knife !" -- not a bad title, eh?

        The police report from that attack would make a K.O. attention-grabber.  Redacted, of course. Then a development section that discusses the mental illness that produced the break.

        That could be an important diary. Well worth making it to the RECOMMEND list.

        "We have nothing to apologize for." NRA 12/14/2012

        by bontemps2012 on Tue Dec 18, 2012 at 06:50:39 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

  •   so they choose arms over life (0+ / 0-)

    Id rather be a tax and spend democrat than a borrow and spend republican any day. I pay my bills. - me

    by AustinLiberal on Mon Dec 17, 2012 at 05:31:23 PM PST

  •  The comparison to knives and cars is way off (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    BigBuck

    Airplanes, knives, and cars are designed to do other things. A gun is designed for one thing: to kill.

  •  Sorry I don't the see the beauty of guns (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    snowwoman

    I see something ugly.  An instrument for ending life.  I don't share in your admiration for guns.  

    However, I will concede that there would be too much resistance to banning guns completely.  So lets start with what we can agree upon.  Assault weapons do not belong in citizens hands.  They are too dangerous.  Lets ban them now.

    "The real wealth of a nation consists of the contributions of its people and nature." -- Rianne Eisler

    by noofsh on Mon Dec 17, 2012 at 05:58:52 PM PST

    •  Agreed...... (0+ / 0-)

      It's funny how only those who lose someone they love to a senseless gun tragedty so they realize that they or anyone else should own these highpowered multiple magazine guns.  No one in the USA wants to take away a pistol or rifle.  We can never get past a true dialogue on gun control and safety until we stop the nostalgic B.S. on how pretty and neat guns are.  

  •  all of 'em ain't under attack. just the crazy ones (0+ / 0-)

    and it's hard to tell which ones are crazy. except that they watch Fox.

    cheerleaders need not apply.

    by kravitz on Mon Dec 17, 2012 at 06:32:37 PM PST

  •  Good thing you contemplated dreamily (0+ / 0-)

    of murdering the little squirrels.

    It takes a big big man to summon the courage to destroy a defenseless creature that harms no one. Because guns are so nice to have and use.

    Yuck.

    The Fierce Urgency of Later

    by Faroutman on Mon Dec 17, 2012 at 06:39:30 PM PST

  •  Only because we live in the US are gun owners (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    snowwoman

    among us, a liberal group.  Think on the implications of this, and the greater impact on those among more conservative groups.  Here we see people of serious and liberal mindsets reminiscing fondly of weapons bestowed by aged relatives, of  things handed down from previous generations.  Think of the ambiguity with which their liberal owners view them.  

    Now make a brief effort to dismiss any ambiguity, and imagine the steadfast intensity of the people who maintain that guns are American, indispensable, critical to democracy, and so forth.  

    This intensity of attitude, this love of guns, is what inhibits change in gun laws.

    When fascism came to America, it was wrapped in a flag and carrying a bible.

    by BigBuck on Mon Dec 17, 2012 at 06:50:19 PM PST

  •  Are there any groups with a lobbying presence .. (0+ / 0-)

    Are there any groups with a lobbying presence opposing the NRA?

    It seems to me that the discussion, in terms of nuts and bolts policy issues, could come to focus on bans on assault guns. I don't suppose it would be an altogether pretty discussion, but it seems to me that it's a relevant discussion. I understand that the NRA would be a part on one side of that discussion. What could one expect to support, on the side of peaceful limits on gun ownership, in levying a sense of social responsibility in light of our freedoms in the US?

  •  'Under siege' (0+ / 0-)

    Feel the title (and even the first sentence are problematic) and belie what follows: a thoughtful look at how the NRA is actually harming the interests of gun owners as well our national discourse.  Thank you for what is generally well-considered assessment of the role of the NRA, but not sure I'd come to the same conclusion that "the American people have a hard time even conceiving of such a thing as a 'responsible gun owner'."

    And gun owners are not "under siege" -- seems a strange image to evoke.  Is that not exactly what the NRA keeps arguing, falsely?  I do not hear loud and forceful calls among the general population for the outright abolition of civilian gun ownership, nor laying siege to lawful, respectful, responsible gun owners.  I do hear loud and forceful calls for the abolition of assault weapons, high capacity ammunition clips, unregulated secondary markets, meaningful background checks.  (And don't think Schumer made a useful comment.  His argument that the left has to abandon its second amendment challenge is misleading and even false.)

    As for "the guns don't kill": as a previous diary pointed out, unlike cars, most knives,...airplanes..., and any other object that could possibly be weaponized (ie practically everything), guns are designed solely to kill and/or harm and for no other reason.  It does not mean one cannot admire a finely crafted piece, but I would point out that even that which might seem beautiful to some was designed to be used to kill; there is no getting around that.  [Now, there is a lot of killing accepted by society at large: in war, to eradicate pests in the home, slaughterhouses, self-defense....  Perceptions of killing and what is acceptable killing, especially of our fellow human beings, will always be debated, and reliant on the interpretation of intent and threat.   (And FL wherefore?)]  Yes, people pick up that object and often have the intent to kill, though sadly the numerous examples of accidental death by lax gun awareness and supervision demonstrate that guns are dangerous even without the intent of death or harm by the user.  But the INTENT in the creation of that object is to kill, and I believe that the intent in the creation is meaningful and to be deeply considered (as I expect it is by many a thoughtful gun owner, though clearly not all and perhaps not even the majority?).

  •  Thanks for reposting. (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Oh Mary Oh

    I was looking for this article this past weekend.

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