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Together with a few other visionary souls in pain about our national gun violence problem, I began a labor of love. Last fall right around Labor Day that effort morphed into the birth of a new Daily Kos group. We began to pull together a Daily Kos resource library of accurate and useful information about American firearms law and policy. Our goal is to talk about gun law and policy where we live, and share what we learn with anyone who wants to walk a mile in our shoes. We hope to educate ourselves and others about one of the urgent problems in our mysfunctional society.

Excerpt from: Introducing a new Group - Firearms Law and Policy

We are afraid. How did we come to be so afraid? Consider one Canadian's perspective on our national obsession with the right to bear arms, (h/t Vetwife).

America is Afraid!! Canada Rants!

by Graeme Provencal

To join the Firearms Law and Policy Group send a Kosmail to the group.

The terrain of gun law, gun policy, and gun violence is vast and complex. Most maps of this land are inadequate to understand what's happening. The daily and weekly toll continues relentlessly. On average, 300 people are shot every day and 85 of them will die from their injuries.

We are a study group that includes people who want to understand Heller/McDonald. We include members who want to see the Second Amendment repealed someday and people who want to see expansion of the Right to Keep and Bear Arms right now.

We see ourselves somewhat like a reading room in the back of a large library. We are willing hold our best ideas up to scrutiny. That is how we hope to come to better arguments to support or refute specific gun laws or policy initiatives. Unlike many Daily Kos groups, we are not an advocacy group with political agenda. Readers are free to drop by with naive questions, to post requests on topics we should cover, to give us homework by posting links to references we should know about. We would like to start a gun news wire, and need contributors from all over the country to participate in that effort. [Contact We Shall Overcome with your ideas, or post them in the comments.]

If you are bored with meta, or tired of Daily Kos, join us and help us by taking a bite of this large juicy apple. Your perspective is valuable. We encourage all authors to write from their own perspective, what is true for them. We challenge our assumptions and vet sources and ideas for each other. That's how we develop better arguments. We hash over diary ideas together. That's one way we become more understanding of other points of view.

There is no ideological litmus test to join. No matter where you are on the spectrum of gun rights/gun regulations you may find valuable information that will help you become a better advocate for gun law and policy issues, wherever you live.

Please join me below the fold or skip straight to the comments and introduce yourself.

We passed the six month mark recently. Feel free to answer our poll, and give us feedback on what we are doing well and where we've dropped the ball. If you think we suck, feel free to comment too, just know that we've been attacked before and insults roll off our back like water off a duck. Whining just puts people to sleep, so we generally ignore that too.

Sponsored by the Firearms Law and Policy Group

We publish Open Thread diaries on Sundays and Wednesdays*

The Daily Kos Firearms Law and Policy group studies actions for reducing firearm deaths and injuries in a manner that is consistent with the current Supreme Court interpretation of the Second Amendment. If you would like to write about firearms law please send us a Kosmail.

To see our list of original and republished diaries, go to the Firearms Law and Policy diary list. Click on the ♥ or the word "Follow" next to our group name to add our posts to your stream, and use the link next to the heart to send a message to the group if you have a question or would like to join.

We have adopted Wee Mama's and akadjian's guidance on communicating.  But most important, be kind, for everyone you meet is fighting a battle.

*except for March, and maybe April
Seriously, we don't have a set publishing schedule. Our authors publish or republish their original articles whenever they are ready.

Excerpt from: Introducing a new Group - Firearms Law and Policy

A personal note from your founders - our vision for the group

from LilithGardener

I support the individual RKBA. I grew up with guns in the house, and was taught to shoot straight at the age of 10. When I served in the military I received additional training/experience with small arms, where I shot at the expert level. Now I live in NYC (unarmed). When we moved here, it was a radical idea for us, this notion of living on a tiny Island with 3 million others, all dependent on public services. We thought about it carefully and discussed the LA riots after the Rodney King verdict. The reports that some Asian neighborhoods didn't burn because they had armed residents on the rooftops warning rioters, "Not this block!" were compelling at the time. What would we do in the event of a crisis like that?

We decided that a gun in the house in NYC would be a bigger liability than it would be elsewhere. Now having lived here through 9/11, major grid power failure, and two hurricanes, I wouldn't have it any other way. People love living in cities like New York because there are a zillion shared moments of cooperation daily.

Anyway. Why this group?

My life experience and my personality enable me to empathize with both sides of the rural/urban divide on gun policy. I'm tired of libertarian arguments about what the 2A means. Whether we think it's a civil rights break through or a flawed decision, the SCOTUS interpretation as articulated in Heller and McDonald is the frame around which we must reconcile hundreds of state and local laws. This group is for those who want to collaborate as we move forward to understand which restrictions are permitted and which are likely to fail on the next SCOTUS review of gun law.

As we saw this past spring, Congress is in a state of gridlock that makes passage of Federal gun laws difficult or impossible. We've all seen the way the sausage is made. Even good legislation can be compromised by amendments that defeat important provisions. I especially want to become an effective advocate for the right of states and local jurisdictions to retain flexibility as they balance expression of the individual right to keep and bear arms with their duty to secure public safety for everyone.

I'm not a constitutional law scholar and I want to understand the law. If you do too will you join us?

Please argue your case the way Wee Mama illustrated in her excellent diary, Make Your Case, attempt to win over your opponent the way akadjian laid out here, and join us for collaborative discussions like this and this.

OregonOak is busy with the beginning of a new semester and he will rejoin us as soon as he can. His first diary to be published with the group will detail what changed for him on December 14, 2012 and why he decided to disassemble his guns and drop them into the sea. Stay tuned! [Oregon Oak has a draft Founder's statement and will publish as soon as his real life responsibilities allow him to rejoin us.]

As you can see, we're learning as we go along. I'm still not very good with tags. Please do help me out with adding appropriate tags or editing those that are there. Please leave a comment indicating your tag edit and your reason.

Originally posted to Firearms Law and Policy on Wed Mar 12, 2014 at 07:06 PM PDT.

Also republished by Shut Down the NRA.


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