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The gun lobby has gone out of its way to make it damn near impossible for the CDC to conduct studies on gun violence.
The good news, the evidence is overwhelming enough that an idiot like me can figure out how exquisitely unnecessary guns really are.
Try this the next time you're talking to one of your conservative friends.

So, I was thinking about ATM machines. In the context of people who think they need a gun to protect their home. Putting aside the fact that very often the presence of a gun in the house makes people objectively less safe by putting them at risk of being shot accidentally--putting all that aside, it's really not hard to see that buying a gun is, at least, a waste of money.
See, here's the thing. If stockpiles of weapons really were such a great way to defend your home, would we expect more lethal force at banks? Commercial institutions who, if they don't know how to do anything else, know how to take in lots of money and spend as little as they can? And yet, they don't make such use of force as you'd expect if lethal force were such an important tool.

Here are the key security features involved in safeguarding ATM's:

- They're filled at random intervals. The person who fills them may very well be armed, but typically it's nothing more than a small handgun. Certainly not a semiautomatic. And ATM's certainly aren't guarded 24/7 by armed guards.
- They're protected by (non-lethal) "man traps" in the sense that you need to use your card once to get in the kiosk, and then again to access your money.
- Security cameras

As for people who try to rob banks during hours, here's how it works. If you were to go into a bank and pass a note to the teller saying, "I have a gun, give me $1,000,000" you'd probably get the money. Now, what would also happen is that the money would have a special dye, or the bank would track the serial numbers on the bills, and probably after you left, they'd call the cops.

Versions of these types of security are easy enough to implement for one's home; many apartment buildings do have such systems.


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Comment Preferences

  •  Most Guards would have a "semiauto" (11+ / 0-)

    Most "normal" hand guns are semiautomatic.

    Example the M1911, also know as the Colt .45 Automatic.
    Automatic refers to the action of the gun reloading and rearming after every round is fired. Rather than requiring some action on the part of the shooter to chamber the next round, as with bolt, pump, and lever action weapons.

    Today we call these guns semi automatic as they only fire one shot per trigger pull rather than a Burst or continue firing as in the example of a Fully Automatic weapon, in which a full auto weapon keeps firing as long as one holds down the trigger.

    Most guards and cops either carry some type of .45 or more common these days some type of 9mm which would also be a semiautomatic weapon that reloads itself after every shot.


    •  Better home security is a security system! (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      radarlady, Buckeye54, Oh Mary Oh

      Stats say a good home security system is better than any other single method. AND just the sign outside warning you have one is very important.

      Dogs can help you feel more secure but will not stop a determined thief.

      I was a door to door salesman in the 70's. I love dogs and know how to read them and gain their trust unless they are highly trained "attack" dogs. I made about half my sales at homes with "Beware of the Dog" signs. I'd let the dog sniff me and watch the speed and direction of his tail movement. When the home owner answered the door I'd be standing there petting the dog. Many times they figured if the dog liked me I must be a nice guy and I was. I even made a sale to a policeman who's trained dog led me to the door bell and wouldn't let me leave till it's master answered.

      I know several friends who bragged about the cool guns they had who had there house broken into just to steal the guns. Mostly the theives would case the house to make sure the gun owner was not home and then break in and grab the guns.

      One friend had two break-ins. DUH? The first time the insurance paid for the gun replacement. ( They had been in a big wooden 'gun safe' with a glass front. ) After the second break-in he could not afford the insurance or guns. A good working monitored alarm system probably would have meant the thieves never came in the first place but then bragging about your super guns might not be the smartest thing to do either.

      Our money system is not what we have been led to believe. The creation of money has been "privatized," or taken over by private money lenders. Thomas Jefferson called them “bold and bankrupt adventurers just pretending to have money.” webofdebt

      by arealniceguy on Tue Jan 29, 2013 at 10:51:47 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  .40 is acctually the training round used. (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      That anti-metric bent runs deep.

      "Til you're so fucking crazy you can't follow their rules" John Lennon - Working Class Hero

      by Horace Boothroyd III on Wed Jan 30, 2013 at 05:11:22 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Pretty bad analogy... (12+ / 0-)

    Sure, if it's only money or monetary items the home invader/robber wanted that'd work, sort of.

    But I've never heard of an ATM machine getting beaten, raped, or killed. How will these types of "security items" you mention help in those cases? They won't, until after the fact.

    You're welcome,

    From an non-conservative friend

    •  If there weren't any guns, and EVERY attempted (0+ / 0-)

      assault, rape and murder went unchallenged by guns, we'd almost certainly have fewer deaths and maimings overall.

      At least, that's how it works in other countries.

      •  Just like Mexico (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        RUNDOWN, happymisanthropy

        A disarmed United States would not look like France.  We would be like the current state of Mexico.  I think rapes, murders, etc would increase dramatically for the same reasons we tend to have more violent crime than most industrialized nations.  We are simply a violent, backwards people.  We need to mature as a society whether or not guns are a factor.

        •  Mexico is not unarmed (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Horace Boothroyd III, Oh Mary Oh

          so I don't see how your argument follows.

          If we instituted strict cradle-to-grave liability on guns, stringent background checks with a month-long waiting period, etc., we could reduce the number of new guns getting into the hands of criminals.

          Then if we required old guns to be destroyed or turned in for new ones in the system, we would gain reasonable control over all legal guns, making it much harder for criminals to get them.

          From then on, just destroy any gun used in a crime and over a period of a few decades, even the illegal guns would vanish.

          From there we could begin to reduce the prevalence of legal guns, if by no other means than convincing people they are pointless and dangerous to them.

  •  See, the thing is, it's not logical. (4+ / 0-)

    It's not about need for most people. It's a want. It's a hobby. For a significant but really not important segment it's more than that, but for most of us it's just a hobby. But as, say, the off-road enthusiast community shows, a hobby can become a well-liked and well-defended way of life.

    Call it a false equivalence if you like, say they're lethal weapons while a 4-wheeler has a "use", and while that's correct, it's also missing the point. What people want is not often determined by a logical analysis.

    Moderation in most things.

    by billmosby on Tue Jan 29, 2013 at 09:19:35 PM PST

    •  If you were ever faced with being attacked ... (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      by a gun-wielding assailant (or worse, multiple assailants), would you not be concerned about your chances for survival if you didn't have a weapon capable of greater firepower than your attacker(s)?

      What people "want" is to know they will likely survive such an encounter, should it occur.

      "Two things are infinite: the universe and human stupidity, and I am not sure about the universe." -- Albert Einstein

      by Neuroptimalian on Wed Jan 30, 2013 at 09:03:58 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Some do, sure. (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        But I own an AK-type and mags up to 75 rounds.

        And I would never consider using that for home defense because even though a lot of the houses around here are brick, they also have large windows and I wouldn't want to endanger my neighbors.

        I'll use a handgun with 9 rd mags instead, and even that is taking some risk. I should really get a shotgun but don't feel like spending more on weapons at the moment.

        On the street? I don't even carry the handgun even though I have a permit. I would never carry the AK, of course. If you have to face multiple attackers on the street, well, you'd have to go to a different state to find them for one thing. And unless you're a police officer or on some other paid errand you probably wouldn't go to a part of any town where you would face a gang anyway.

        Moderation in most things.

        by billmosby on Thu Jan 31, 2013 at 08:19:36 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

  •  There are people out there... (4+ / 0-)

    ...who would love to buy a gun just to kill their ATM machine.

    Boehner Just Wants Wife To Listen, Not Come Up With Alternative Debt-Reduction Ideas

    by dov12348 on Tue Jan 29, 2013 at 09:41:39 PM PST

  •  Do you have any data on ATM crimes? (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    theboz, johnny wurster
    •  One thing's for sure, ... (0+ / 0-)

      millions of them are not sited in relatively-safe lobbies; they're stand-alone machines offering no protection whatsoever to their users.

      "Two things are infinite: the universe and human stupidity, and I am not sure about the universe." -- Albert Einstein

      by Neuroptimalian on Wed Jan 30, 2013 at 09:05:28 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  A nitpick (7+ / 0-)
    If you were to go into a bank and pass a note to the teller saying, "I have a gun, give me $1,000,000" you'd probably get the money.
    No you wouldn't - not that much anyway. From one teller you'd get a couple thousand maybe.  Wait around while the silent alarm is ticking for all the tellers and you get maye $10,000 or so depending how big the branch is. Wait still longer (doubtful for those in a hurry) for them to go to the vault, and you're still talking in the thousands - not close to a million cash.

    They simply don't have that much cash laying around.

    Self-described political "centrists" believe the best policy is halfway between right and wrong. — @RBReich via web

    by BentLiberal on Tue Jan 29, 2013 at 11:40:16 PM PST

  •  And about that home security system (2+ / 0-)

    According to cops I've talked to, THE most effective home security system you can buy is a dog. Given the choice between burglarizing a house with a dog and a house without a dog, burglars will always go for the dogless option.

  •  I was at an atm once years ago. A man was coming (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Oh Mary Oh

    up to me with his hand out. I don't hear THAT well and he was saying money'.

    He was walking quite upright and straight on towards me.

    I was so ready to give him a very hard sidekick to the solar plexus. So ready.

    He was asking if the machine was working.

    So close.....

    The path of the righteous man is beset on all sides by the inequities of the selfish and the tyranny of evil men.

    by xxdr zombiexx on Wed Jan 30, 2013 at 03:25:54 AM PST

  •  Interesting proposal (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    happymisanthropy, Neuroptimalian

    So let's see: banks have armored vehicles with armed guards who transport money to and from the vault, many have armed security guards, and even if someone did rob a bank, the bank's money is insured by the federal government, so nothing is actually lost.

    Tell me how that fits in with the average renter or homeowner's situation again. Or are you proposing that in exchange for disarming gun owners, the government should grant every household armed transport, vaults for valuables, exploding dyes and panic buttons in the event of a robbery, and reimburse them for 100% of their loss when robbed?

    Also, I know the first comment mentioned your mistake about semiautomatic guns, but it was such a basic and at this point, unacceptable mark of ignorance about an item you want to see severely regulated. You can't expect to be taken very seriously about wanting to ban semiautomatic guns if in the same breath you reveal you don't even know what they are and have no problem with armed guards using them.

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