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    I've never owned a gun; I've never fired one. I've little interest in weaponry. My twenty-three-year-old son, on the other hand, is a champion marksman who has owned his gun, an FNP-45, for years. He's a wise, sober gun owner; he faithfully cares for it and for his safety, ours, and his friends'. He's thoroughly uninterested in owning an assault weapon and he seems satisfied with his one pistol. He and I largely agree as to what firearms laws ought to look like.

     We've had a lively, ongoing dialogue about scores of personal, political, economic, and cultural issues attendant to firearms ownership. This week we'll discuss a map from  a recent 'Washington Post column' by Ezra Klein. The map correlates the number of firearm deaths to gun-control restrictions, state-by-state. It's clear-as-a-bell that more guns in the hands of citizens do not, contrary to well-crafted lobby-and corporate-inspired myth, create safer environments.

     The fact is the more guns held by a state's private citizens, the fewer regulations designed to protect children, the more gun-related deaths your state has. Louisiana, for example, has many more firearms-related deaths than other states, per capita, and it has among the loosest of our states' gun codes.

     I would never support restrictions that would deny my son the joy marksmanship brings him and the skills he increasingly hones. Yet he and I are clear: there's a sickening chasm between his joy and his skill and the suffering loosed on our population by loose regulation.

     He and I agree that the law must now, and for good, address that awful chasm.

-- map from statehealthfacts.org.

Originally posted to Jonathan Wolfman on Fri Mar 01, 2013 at 05:51 AM PST.

Also republished by Shut Down the NRA and Repeal or Amend the Second Amendment (RASA).

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Comment Preferences

  •  Sensible, basic legislation tightening up (3+ / 0-)

    all manner of issues from 'private sales loopholes' to jacking up the scrutiny on safe storage and transport can reduce a large number of accidents and limiting improper persons from legal access will aid in discouraging crime.

    "Discouraging", not 'eliminating'.

    Just as we have been able to reduce the overall number of  deaths from drunk driving without re-prohibition alcohol - a dangerous and deadly drug very popular with many Americans who make excuses for being responsible drinkers - and we have saved lives.

    Of course accidents still happen but we still aren't totally banning alcohol, though I have no real idea why not, given how dangerous it is.

    I imagine there is some consideration for the fact that the VAST MAJORITY of alcohol users are essentially responsible: no accidents, no driving record, no DUI's, things that would indicate trouble(s).

    Do we want MOST American alcohol users to be deprived of the joy of drunkenness in order to further improve traffic and public safety?

    (I know a lot of people hate this line of reasoning, but I don't care. They can't explain it away. It's the same principle)

    Which lives to Americans want to save?

    I think we should save as many as possible.

    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 Fri Mar 01, 2013 at 06:09:54 AM PST

    •  Your alcohol analogy doesn't quite fit (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      annecros
      I imagine there is some consideration for the fact that the VAST MAJORITY of alcohol users are essentially responsible ... Do we want MOST American alcohol users to be deprived of the joy of drunkenness in order to further improve traffic and public safety?
      The problem is your equating enjoyment of alcohol with drunkenness which is near the extreme end of the scale when it comes to alcohol use.  

      This statement is equivalent to likening using guns for sport to the enjoyment of murdering in cold blood.  One does not beget the other.  I for one am not willing to support taking away liberties of MOST Americans on the basis that a few engage in abuse whereas it seems you are:

      we still aren't totally banning alcohol, though I have no real idea why not
      •  No 2 Buck Chuck, No Peace! (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        BlackSheep1

        I keep reading that we have to register guns (at a minimum) in Indiana and Wisconsin because Chicago's murder rate is high.

        A couple of weeks ago, I bought a nice Ste. Chappelle Merlot in Idaho because I don't want to be ripped off by Utah's state liquor monopoly.

        So the entire country should have to follow Utah's liquor laws, right?

      •  And gun banner equate gun ownership (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        RiveroftheWest

        with being a potential murderer.

        This diary is about a guy who likes shooting paper targets and has yet to harm anybody else.

        Alcohol consumption (apparently) doesnt NOT EQUAL "getting drunk" (depite alcohol being consumed).

        Gun ownership does not  equal "wanton murderous monster" as some will tell you it does.

        So yeah, the comparison of alcohol and guns is quite legitimate and relatively exact, even though some complain.

        It is like being told "It';s ok for somebody to be killed by a drunk driver but not to be shot to death".

        What sense does that make?

        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 Fri Mar 01, 2013 at 10:08:36 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

    •  Why isn't alcohol banned? (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      RiveroftheWest, xxdr zombiexx
      Of course accidents still happen but we still aren't totally banning alcohol, though I have no real idea why not, given how dangerous it is.
      We tried that, remember?  It was called "Prohibition," and it directly led to a huge upsurge in organized crime, bootleg alcohol, and drunkenness/alcoholism - not to mention the tremendous loss in tax revenue for the government.  That's why it was repealed.

      Like most things in life, alcohol is only dangerous in excess, or when combined with activities requiring close attention (i.e., driving).  Sitting home and drinking 1 martini isn't dangerous - drinking 5 martinis and then going driving to pick up more vodka IS.  That's why drinking and driving is criminalized.  Drinking alone hurts only you - drinking and driving hurts other people.l

      •  thank you. (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        RiveroftheWest

        We didn't have the money or the resolve in the 20's and 30's.

        marijuana and the war on drugs have taught us we can tolerate the vast deaths caused by the black market as well as blow $20-$30 billion A YEAR to arrest 800000 Americans.

        We CAN re-illegalize alcohol, despite the debacle that would be. All we have to do is have the resolve to not let unpleasant facts and the quality of commoners lives get in the way.

        Cops will LOVE it and America loves to appaese cops.

        This has win written all over it.

        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 Fri Mar 01, 2013 at 10:05:12 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

  •  Since you mentioned Louisiana (4+ / 0-)

    Texas and Louisiana have similar gun laws, yet Louisiana has 2-3 times the firearm death rate as their neighbor Texas.  How can that be explained?

    "I'm a progressive man and I like progressive people" Peter Tosh

    by Texas Lefty on Fri Mar 01, 2013 at 06:13:01 AM PST

  •  Jonathan, I think you meant to have a link at the (7+ / 0-)

    end, but it's not linking to anything.

  •  My Gun Piece Abt My Son (2+ / 0-)

    Thanks to all of you.

    Jon

  •  Re: The map (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    ffour, Utahrd

    Funny thing about it.  If Wyoming has more than 5 gun deaths in 2007, she balloons out of the lowest quintile.  As of 2010, DC had a gun homicide rate of 16.5, California had 3.3 and Wyoming had 0.8 (Wyoming having the highest share of gun owners to the population in the country).

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

  •  Good diary, it is not about banning guns rather (3+ / 0-)

    about sensible regulations that still allow people to enjoy their guns and reduce the carnage.

    When one person is getting shot every 5 minutes, things are definitely out of control.  Sadly with all the guns that have been flooding the street in the last 5 years I worry that the 100k plus shootings per year will soon see an increase.  More guns, with more firepower, to more people that have no training will very likely result in more people getting shot.

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

    by DefendOurConstitution on Fri Mar 01, 2013 at 07:50:55 AM PST

  •  I'm not really seeing the correlation (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    noway2, FrankRose

    A conservative is a man with two perfectly good legs who, however, has never learned how to walk forward. Franklin D. Roosevelt

    by notrouble on Fri Mar 01, 2013 at 11:28:32 AM PST

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