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Look, it's time to grow up. I know you want to get an AR-15 without a background check, plus a huge magazine so you can stop government bad guys and be a Wolverine. You've been asking for months. But those things are dangerous. You'll shoot your eye out, kid!

You're not really defending your freedoms. No serious adult thinks that. The United States has the largest, most powerful military in the entire history of the world. And it is led by a group of people who live in fear of bad poll numbers. Do you understand this? Do you see how your militia group does not even begin to pose the kind of threat to the political structure that a guy with a camera or a website or a couple of incriminating documents does? I mean, it's fun to pretend at war, but it doesn't do any good, and people are getting hurt. You will really shoot your eye out. I mean it.

Have you looked at statistics from the CDC? Homicide by firearm and suicide by firearm are each in the top five causes of death for 2010. And in 2006 and 2007, they were each in the top five causes of injury death. We'd know more, but the NRA has been trying to suppress research into gun injuries and fatalities for years. Just like they have been fighting to prevent the ATF from computerizing gun records and making the FBI destroy information on background checks after 24 hours. They won't even let the ATF make dealers keep an inventory. Those dudes want to keep you from knowing how unsafe guns are. But it's clear that fighting tyranny with Charlene at your side is much, much less likely than plain old shooting your eye out.

Is any of this reaching you? The NRA wants you to romanticize guns. They want you to think that with your assault rifle, you're standing guard against some sort of federal conspiracy. But the thing that stops public officials from doing what they want is the thought of losing an election. I've lost a couple of them myself, and it stings like a bastard. The true source of the NRA's political power  - lobbying and fundraising - is the perfect demonstration of how irrelevant their cause really is. Everything else is fun and games. And you know what they say about fun and games... they stop the moment someone shoots his goddamn eye out.

How 'bout a pony?

NOTE: Please read more of my stuff, like how I'm a bizarre minor character in Tina Fey's book, or The Clarifications Of Pat Robertson - A Celebration. Or you can pay 99 cents and buy my bizarre love story about life in a fashion magazine, which is kinda sorta the true story of how I married my wife (Kindle/Nook). Special thanks to SMB for development and support.

Originally posted to www.goblinbooks.com on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 09:31 AM PST.

Also republished by Repeal or Amend the Second Amendment (RASA).

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Comment Preferences

  •  Excellent diary! (6+ / 0-)

    You have made the point beautifully.

    "You'll shoot your eye out, kid."  I sweartagoddess, no matter how many times I've seen that movie and will see it again, it ALWAYS makes me laugh!  Thanks for the reminder.

    "Religion is what keeps the poor from murdering the rich."--Napoleon

    by Diana in NoVa on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 09:35:26 AM PST

  •  What's wrong with the rec button? Or is it (3+ / 0-)

    my laptop?  Trying to rec as well as tip but something won't let me.

    "Religion is what keeps the poor from murdering the rich."--Napoleon

    by Diana in NoVa on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 09:36:52 AM PST

  •  asdf (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    rockhound, BlackSheep1
    They won't even let the ATF make dealers keep an inventory of what they sell.
    Dealers must keep sales records for 25 years.  Inventories of weapons NOT sold might be a legitimate concern.

    the purpose of the second amendment is to promote a well-regulated militia, in the same sense that the purpose of the first amendment is to promote a well-informed electorate.

    by happymisanthropy on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 09:56:24 AM PST

  •  Thank you Paul. It certainly would be good to stem (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Smoh, radical simplicity

    them 100k plus people injured by GSWs every single year. (oh, don't worry, as "only" 31k-32k result in deaths!)

    Then they came for me - and by that time there was nobody left to speak up.

    by DefendOurConstitution on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 10:08:17 AM PST

  •  Here are some regulations that don't infringe on (3+ / 0-)

    anyone's Second Amendment rights and should be passed by Congress:

    1. FULL background check on EVERY sale/transfer
    2. Licensing
    3. Registration

    Sure, those things - even when implemented a few months/years from now - will have very little effect short term and the carnage will continue (and some gun cult members will say we shouldn't do it because they will have no effect), but after a few years of having those regulations in placed we will see reductions in the carnage from keeping guns away from (some, not all) people that should not have their hands on a firearm (cue in the same cult members saying the regulations would have no effect saying that they had too much effect and their guns will be confiscated). This will happen in a few ways:

    1. Registration (or some tracking mechanism so that the provenance of every gun can be traced) will make gun owners much less likely to sell guns to criminals, which is done with impunity since private sales are not regulated and this results in many straw purchases that get "laundered" into illegal guns.  Many people that claim their guns were stolen probably just sold them to one of the dealers that import them into states with strict gun regulations and supply criminals.  Knowing that the gun can be traced back to you, will make an owner think twice before selling it to unscrupulous dealers.

    2. Fewer guns will end up in the hands of violent felons that, in spite of being banned from purchasing firearms, still get them.  Here is where true/full background checks become important.

    3. People that are licensed/trained will eventually start keeping firearms secured and out of the reach of so many young people that shouldn't have access to them, and yet they do (as in the NM tragedy this weekend or in the carnage in Newtown).

    A great market-based solution could also be added to help, insurance for people who own a firearm.

    Then they came for me - and by that time there was nobody left to speak up.

    by DefendOurConstitution on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 10:21:17 AM PST

    •  Isn't it sad that we have both sides of this (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      DefendOurConstitution

      conversation memorized?  They have nothing new to say and won't even discuss reasonable (who decides what's reasonable?) changes in regulations.  Guess they just won't be at the table.  There! That'll fix us.  Sigh...

      Cats are better than therapy, and I'm a therapist.

      by Smoh on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 10:30:28 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  Standardized nationwide compliance (0+ / 0-)

      of every sale requiring a 4473 would count as registration.

      Though unquestionably there are straw purchases and gun running, the assertion of many people claiming theft so as to launder guns is not supported by facts.

      And again, insurance is a government mandated financial barrier that disproportionately favors the wealthy.

      Yes, people should be made aware of their responsibility for securing their weapons - to keep them out of the hands of children or those who might harm themselves or others, and there should be stricter criminal penalties for reckless disregard of safe practices.  

      I don't know the specifics in Lanza's case, of how he was able to access the guns;  but I wholly blame his mother, knowing what she did of her son, for retaining guns in the house.

      I see a very beautiful planet that seems very inviting and peaceful. Unfortunately, it is not.…We're better than this. We must do better. Cmdr Scott Kelley

      by wretchedhive on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 12:05:19 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Glad to hear you support registration, so 4473 (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        radical simplicity

        would be filed on every firearm sold/transferred, even private sales and gun shows?  Now that would be progress.

        Do you also support licensing to make sure people are "aware of their responsibility for securing their weapons?" I don't expect you need any lessons on this issue, but many people that don't know any basics of gun safety buy firearms all the time - the only way I can see that all are made aware of basic safety rules is some licensing system where people have to pass a test to prove they can handle and store a firearm safely.  I have seen plenty of dangerous handling and reckless storing that, even if it is a minority, is a very large number in absolute terms.

        I agree that a lot of the blame in the Newtown case lies with Lanza's mother for keeping this small arsenal in their home, but pretty much any teenager will get access to their parent's gun if they want to, regardless of safe storage (my dad knew that I had played with loaded revolvers at neighbors' houses when I was 4-5 years old - they hid them and we always found them - so he when he got a 9 mm Parabellum he had a special locked case for it and I just stole the keys one time and made a copy, so as a teenager I had access to this pistol pretty much any time I wanted and my dad was not around. Luckily none of my friends/family ever got hurt, but I do know many that were.)

        Then they came for me - and by that time there was nobody left to speak up.

        by DefendOurConstitution on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 02:18:12 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  I'll disagree with the implication (0+ / 0-)
          ...but pretty much any teenager will get access to their parent's gun if they want to.
          I will not presume to speak for the upbringing of anyone that I wasn't there to witness, but in households that I knew where guns were present, there was one absolute, inviolable edict - DO NOT FUCK WITH THE GUNS.  EVER.

          Me and my friends were no angels, our respective parents were not cut from the same cloth, but there were lines, and there were LINES.

          Guns weren't treated as some mysterious taboo, eliciting natural curiosity, but presented as extraordinarily dangerous tools, but tools just the same.  Just as a circular saw unplugged on the workbench can do terrible damage, it is not imbued with some sort of self-possessed intent (actually I was more interested in power tools growing up, than guns).

          To reiterate, I don't think that any of my friends would rather be fucking with a gun on their own than being caught by their parents while drunk driving.  So maybe that's the prism through which I see the current state of parenting, where criminal carelessness is in abundance compared to what I knew of in 1980's suburbia.

          I see a very beautiful planet that seems very inviting and peaceful. Unfortunately, it is not.…We're better than this. We must do better. Cmdr Scott Kelley

          by wretchedhive on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 05:52:54 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

        •  coming back to the idea (0+ / 0-)

          that so-called licensing will insure awareness...  I'll only point to every idiot on the road today to refute that presumption.

          I want prophylactic solutions that will abate violence.  There are many here who are arguing what color to paint the barn after the horses took off.

          I see a very beautiful planet that seems very inviting and peaceful. Unfortunately, it is not.…We're better than this. We must do better. Cmdr Scott Kelley

          by wretchedhive on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 08:02:05 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

      •  Buy a cheaper gun and pay for the insurance (0+ / 0-)

        Sorry, but car insurance also favors the wealthy, as do homeowner's insurance, renter's insurance, event insurance, business insurance, health insurance, ....

        But here's the thing: liability insurance for guns ensures that victims (or their survivors) can be compensated for any misuse of a gun.

        Car insurance is mandatory, not because we want bad drivers to be able to repair their cars, but because the victims of traffic accidents generally need at least car repairs, and at worst funeral coverage, with a whole range of possible medical expenses in the middle ground.

        The mandatory insurance is not to protect the car owner, and won't be to protect the gun owner, but rather the potential victim(s) of the gun. Their rights also cannot be infringed, but irresponsible gun owners seem to do an awfully good job of infringing those rights all the time - currently with little to no recourse for the victims.

        Accidents happen. Intent happens. A gun owner who chooses not to ensure that people who may be accidentally or intentionally injured by the owner's gun can be compensated to help recover from their injury is not taking responsibility for the risk they've created.

        An AR-15 is $2k, at least, other guns vary in price from "insanely cheap" to "you could buy a car for that!" So, people can buy a gun that's cheap enough (or whose liability coverage would be inexpensive enough) that they can afford it. They don't get to back out on the liability insurance, though. They choose to create the risk, they must be responsible for that risk, via insurance.

        •  since when has the cost of insurance been (0+ / 0-)

          commensurate with, or should be (in the case of a Constitutionally protected right) the actual cost of exercising that right.

          Driving a car is not a right.  Ask anyone who's been convicted of a DWI.

          Government mandated financial barriers to exercising a right must be viewed as unconstitutional.  That is unless you're the type that believe CU is a good decision.

          I see a very beautiful planet that seems very inviting and peaceful. Unfortunately, it is not.…We're better than this. We must do better. Cmdr Scott Kelley

          by wretchedhive on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 07:57:01 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  Then I suggest you find a way to make it cost-free (0+ / 0-)

            For people who can't afford it. Shifting the cost to the victims is not acceptable.

            •  um, ok (0+ / 0-)

              kind of pie in the sky, considering we can't even get single-payer going.

              Although, that really wouldn't be much of a problem then, medical bill wise, would it?  And settlements won't bring back loved ones anyway.

              This is getting all Rube Goldberg-y to be a reasonable method of the goal of violence abatement, considering the deplorable priorities we have that healthcare is not a right in the first place.

              I'll stipulate if healthcare WAS a right in the same way that gun ownership is currently a right, there'd be a basis for a grand debate worthy of consideration by all.  But as it stands, perversely as most might see it, healthcare is not a right, and is not afforded the same level of consideration without a compelling public need that outstrips the Constitution as it stands.

              I see a very beautiful planet that seems very inviting and peaceful. Unfortunately, it is not.…We're better than this. We must do better. Cmdr Scott Kelley

              by wretchedhive on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 08:58:40 PM PST

              [ Parent ]

              •  The right to not be killed or injured by another (0+ / 0-)

                Takes precedent over the right to own a gun.

                There is a compelling state interest to prevent death and injury of innocent people, and the supreme court has set many a precedent in which that compelling interest is allowed to put limits on a right (the most commonly noted: not falsely yelling fire in a theater).

                •  two different things (0+ / 0-)

                  you have a right not to be harmed by malicious intent or willful negligence, but that does not afford you the right to proactively deprive the liberties of those who take reasonable care to avoid such harm in an absolutist manner without due process.

                  The right to own a firearm is, and has always been, throughout the history of our country, affirmed.  Seeking to utterly nullify the 2a is political suicide.

                  You cannot point to someone with a car and say that you believe they will drive in a reckless manner that may injure you or someone else even though the car is capable of being used irresponsibly or dangerously.

                  Also, "innocent" is a red herring.  what does that have to do with anything?

                  I believe in limits, I just don't agree with, nor the justifications that you present as the reason for yours.

                  I see a very beautiful planet that seems very inviting and peaceful. Unfortunately, it is not.…We're better than this. We must do better. Cmdr Scott Kelley

                  by wretchedhive on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 09:31:36 PM PST

                  [ Parent ]

            •  looking back (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              radical simplicity

              it was unfair to even allude to the fact that because you believe in one thing, you'd support the CU decision.

              them's nasty, fightin' words, and I apologize for the mere association.

              I see a very beautiful planet that seems very inviting and peaceful. Unfortunately, it is not.…We're better than this. We must do better. Cmdr Scott Kelley

              by wretchedhive on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 09:36:23 PM PST

              [ Parent ]

  •  Record keeping... (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    rockhound

    All licensed firearm dealers must keep sales records.

    FFL holders are required to keep a registry of firearms sales in an ATF-approved Bound Book, or a computerized equivalent using ATF-approved software. Licensed dealers must also maintain file copies of Form 4473 or eForm 4473 "Firearms Transaction Record" documents, for a period of not less than 20 years after the date of sale or disposition. When retiring or otherwise relinquishing a license, these records are sent to the BATFE's Out-of-Business Records Center. Licensed collectors are not required to send their records to the BATFE when relinquishing their license. The ATF is allowed to inspect, as well as request a copy of the Form 4473 from the dealer during the course of a criminal investigation. In addition, the sale of two or more handguns to a person in a five business day period must be reported to ATF on Form 3310.4.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/...

    Form 4473:  

    The Form 4473 contains name, address, date of birth, government-issued photo ID, National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS) background check transaction number, make/model/serial number of the firearm, and a short federal affidavit stating that the purchaser is eligible to purchase firearms under federal law. Lying on this form is a felony and can be punished by up to five years in prison in addition to fines, even if the transaction is simply denied by the NICS, although prosecutions are rare in the absence of another felony committed with the gun purchased.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/...

    "A lie is not the other side of a story; it's just a lie."

    by happy camper on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 11:22:05 AM PST

  •  Thanks for catch on weapons sales. (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    radical simplicity

    I changed it so it's that ATF can't force dealers to keep an inventory. Not listing sales, but stock of guns.

    That's what I meant, but my phrasing was bad. Makes it sound like they don't force you to file paperwork on sales.

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