Welcome to Common Gunsense

I hope this blog will provoke some thoughtful reflection about the issue of guns and gun violence. I am passionate about the issue and would love to change some misperceptions and the culture of gun violence in America by sharing with readers words, photos, videos and clips from articles to promote common sense about gun issues. Many of you will agree with me- some will not. I am only one person but one among many who think it's time to do something about this national problem. The views expressed by me in this blog do not represent any group with which I am associated but are rather my own personal opinions and thoughts.

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Yes, we can!

There is a defeatist and self fulfilling view propogated by the pro gun folks that we simply can't do anything about gun violence so why even try. Of course what it means is that we must not do anything because it might interfere with their own gun rights and gun ownership. These folks don't want to be at all inconvenienced regarding their guns. But here is a great article about the common sense steps that can and must be taken to assure that guns don't fall into the wrong hands and that we provide the people and the research to make sure we are doing the right thing concerning prevention. Four things that can be done and that I have advocated on this blog, could make a difference. If we had the will, we could reduce gun violence in our country.

This letter to the editor does a great job of explaining what the gun control organizations and those who agree with them feel about reasonable restrictions. We can do this folks. And we can do this in the way the letter writer, Andrew Goddard, explains so well. In Goddard's words:" The Second Amendment is important, but it was not intended to create an excuse to oppose all reasonable public-safety measures. Guns do not cause criminality; they just make criminality more deadly. Sticking our heads in the sand and repeating that “guns aren’t the problem” is not a constructive approach to this issue." There are myths coming from the gun lobby that have tied up any hope of moving forward to reduce the number of gun deaths and injuries in this country. The path to common sense is littered with the bodies of the victims. It needn't be. 

What we can't do is nothing. What we can't do is let NRA V.P. Wayne LaPierre continue to get away with his provocative rhetoric in public appearances. I blogged about this several posts ago. At his recent appearance at the annual CPAC conference, he delivered his tired old tirade of half truths and falsehoods and supposedly the several thousand folks who went to his speech believed him. Yes we can and should challenge his remarks. They do not reflect the views of most Americans and yet, he and his organization get away with their old mantras to the detriment of public safety.

Yes we can stop college students from using loaded guns on campus to settle differences with each other or a professor.The idea behind the push for guns on campuses is that students and teachers could prevent a mass shooting. It is likely not to work out the way these folks envision it. College students just do not have the same judgement as those older and wiser ( a cliche, I know). Sure, they can vote and they can serve in the military if they sign up. Mind you, they get a lot of training to serve in the armed forces. Those who seriously want guns on campuses in Texas and other states, have not thought through the consequences and all of the variables involved. This article, however, puts them together in a different way. I love it when someone does research and discovers some truths previously unexplored. For instance: " In conclusion, lawmakers should think carefully about the minimum age for concealed handgun licensing. In particular, they should be sensitive to major lifestyle changes - such as going off to college - that could disrupt established behavioral patterns." Common sense tells most reasonable people that it is not only a bad idea but could be downright dangerous to allow guns on college campuses.

I also love this action on the part of neighborhood faith based groups to stop a gun shop owner from selling guns illegally. This is a "yes we can" attitude and it is coming from faith based groups who are concerned about the number of folks in their neighborhoods who are losing their lives to guns, helped along by a "bad apple" gun dealer in Philadelphia who is knowingly selling guns to illegal buyers.These folks are shedding the light of day on a business that is providing weapons to those who can't or won't handle them responsibly." Emir Greene, an eighth grader from Germantown, said he wants to put an end to the violence in his neighborhood. "It's everywhere. You're scared to even go home at night," said Greene, who lost his father and a friend to gun violence."The world is bad enough as it is," he added. "Why do we need all of this violence?"" Sometimes children can teach adults valuable lessons. His common sense words should be heeded by the adults.

In my next post, I will talk about the "no we can't" world view that is actually undoing  positive measures towards preventing gun violence.  


  1. "College students just do not have the same judgement as those older and wiser ( a cliche, I know)."

    Even if we accept this premise, you completely disregard professors, members of the public who utilize college facilities, and the large number of college students who are not in the 18-21 year old range.

    "Mind you, they get a lot of training to serve in the armed forces."

    I can't speak for any branch of the armed forces except the air force, but after taking one ladies handgun course (only one range day long), I had had far more firearms training than an average member of the air force (including those deployed to war zones!)

  2. I also love this action on the part of, etc.

    In that article there is no evidence or allegation that the gun store is actually selling illegally, yet you call it a '"bad apple" gun dealer in Philadelphia who is knowingly selling guns to illegal buyers.' Did you read your own citation? Irresponsible.

  3. suspected of selling to straw purchasers

  4. Point of order Japete:

    "suspected of selling to straw purchasers " Is not the same as "stop(ing) a gun shop owner from selling guns illegally" or "knowingly selling guns to illegal buyers."

    Words Mean Things.

  5. could make a difference. If we had the will, we could reduce gun violence in our country.

    It is possible. But these ideas have been tried before in various places and none of them have been effective in reducing overall violence or death. Some of them have been effective in reducing gun deaths but there is apparently a substitution effect and overall deaths stay the same or increase. Lots of things could be possible, but sadly, the solutions proposed don't have a good track record.


    Re colleges: Why does a normally sane, well adjusted, responsible CCW holder -- perhaps ex-military or law enforcement -- suddenly become a homicidal maniac if they cross the street and step onto a campus? That is an interesting view, but I don't think there is much evidence to suggest it.

    The argument you make is better oriented towards age restrictions on CCW. It is already illegal for most of the classes you're worried about (people <21, drunk people, etc) to carry.

    The act you describe -- using loaded guns to settle scores -- is known as premeditated murder. Someone who is contemplating Murder 1 is not likely to be deterred by a weapons misconduct charge. The only thing a gun free zone may prevent are negligent discharges and crimes of passion. NDs are rare to start with, and unfortunately, requiring people to load, unload, holster, and unholster their firearms frequently is likely to increase NDs; unnecessary handling is not a safe practice. Crimes of passion by CCW permit holders are also extremely rare. You're more likely to get ecoli from eating bad cheese than you are to get shot by a permit carrier.

    The policies you are proposing might make you feel safer, but there is a difference between feeling safer and being safer.

    Chris from AK

  6. "If we had the will, we could reduce gun violence in our country."

    We are reducing gun violence in this country. Through gun safety education and shall-issue carry permitting.

  7. Cool. Here's a few "yes we can's" from our side.

    Yes we can continue to fight with our votes to make sure any politician who buys into anti-gun solutions to cultural issues doesn't get re-elected.
    Yes we can continue to educate the American public that it's violent people, not any object, that causes our outrageous murder rate.

    I could go on and on, but how about a few "yes we can's" that we can do together, Japete? These will be for both of us. Ready?

    Yes we can keep fighting over background checks and magazine capacities while the real cultural reasons for violence continue unchecked.
    Yes we can spend all our resources fighting over whether the next mass murderer can have 10 rounds or 30, though any law passed won't affect him in what he can accomplish -- just how he has to do it.
    Yes we can keep digging graves for all the people who die while we fight over whether legal gun owners need to get background checks or not, knowing that criminals who want a gun will find a way to get one.

    I think you know in your heart, Japete, that since you can't actually ban guns and claim not to want to ... there's not much any gun control will do except make you feel better and make people like me feel less empowered.

    But I gotta tell you ... as worried as I was that you and your ilk would make progress to a few limited (but annoying) gun restrictions, as time goes by I am less and less worried. But I'm still committed to working against you, because we still have bad gun control laws to roll back (and that we're actually making progress on).

  8. Interesting article. In it you will note the link to the LCAV brochure "Gun Laws Matter".


    Go ahead and read that first paragraph- the one where it says that Florida is in the "top ten strongest gun laws", and then correlates those laws with low gun death rates. Go ahead and read a little further, and you'll see Pennsylvania, Michigan, and Virginia all very solidly ranked in the top 16.

    Now, go into your favorites and get on the Brady campaign's website and see where Brady ranks those same states.

    Go ahead, I'll wait. I would explain for the gun owners, but they're already too busy howling with laughter. Some of them probably have FL CCWs like I do , and some of them may have even walked into a gun store in FL and walked out 20 minutes later with an "assault rifle". Just like I have.

    I call statistical shenanigans.

  9. jdege- that seems to be working out so well.

  10. Anon- if you but look further into the data you will see that the LCAV also wrote this about Florida: " Florida law does, however, impose a waiting period prior to purchase of a handgun. In addition, firearms dealers in Florida must contact the Florida Department of Law Enforcement ("FDLE") prior to selling a firearm, and the FDLE conducts a background check on the firearm purchaser.

    Local governments in Florida generally lack authority to regulate firearms or ammunition, although they may require a background check prior to the transfer of a firearm between private parties and may extend the waiting period as described below.

    Florida requires the Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services to issue a license to carry a concealed weapon to any applicant who meets certain basic qualifications."

    Their rating system is different from that done by the Brady Campaign. You can tell then that we don't all march in lock step. We can have differences in how we look at things and still come to the conclusion that we have too many gun deaths. Florida happens to be on the list of states that have higher rates per 100,000 than other states.12.48 per 100,000 is above the average in America and 32 other states.

  11. In order to clear up some of the confusion:

    Florida uses the FDLE to provide background checks in place of the NICS system, not in addition to the NICS system.

    Florida CCW holders do not have to wait the 3 day waiting period, if they pass the background check.

    A funny quirk in the law is that Law Enforcement Officers must wait the 3 day waiting period if they do not have a CCW. Silly but that's the law.

  12. My list is this:

    1. Background checks on ever transfer.
    2. Licensing of every gun owner
    3. Registration of every gun to a licensed owner.

    I say let them have their magazines and their silencers and other unimportant crap they like so much.

    Those three rules properly enforced would do a world of good. And the inconvenience to legit people would be minimal.

  13. "1. Background checks on ever transfer.
    2. Licensing of every gun owner
    3. Registration of every gun to a licensed owner."

    There will be civil war in this country before that happens.

  14. You wrote: jdege- that seems to be working out so well.

    It is. Accidental gun deaths have decreased substantially, both in absolute terms and in relative terms, even though millions more people have become gun owners.

    The murder rate is also down substantially, continuing a long-term trend. There's no "blood in the streets."

  15. @MikeB

    1. Fine
    2. No, I don't need a license to exercise a Constitutional Right and gun owners have a right to privacy
    3. No. Registration has on majority led to confiscation. Also, registration programs cost on average 4 to 10 times more than expected and have no effect on crime

    Here is my list
    1. No gun free zones - they seem to on average be bullet magnets and its again a personal right
    2. Country wide reciprocity or more appropriately Constitutional Carry
    3. Remove the "Sporting Purpose" clause

  16. Joan-

    You can continue not posting my comments- that's okay. I'm not talking to anyone else anyway, I'm talking to you.

    I understand why you wouldn't post the question, but that doesn't mean it's not legitimate. Why is it okay to lord over law abiding gun owners (from all backgrounds), the vast majority of whom will never commit a violent crime, and then completely ignore a sub-culture that actually encourages violent, demeaning behavior? I am far from xenophobic, and will insist with my dying breath that it is NURTURE, not nature. But to give actual bad behavior a pass and go after potential bad behavior is LUNACY.

    I would argue that rather than stand in front of a gun store, their time would be better spent teaching kids that need good role models how to do math so they can get scholarships, a decent job, and be able to afford nice things without resorting to crime.

    But I'm guessing that's too much work.

  17. @mikeb302000

    #1 I have generally have no objection to this in ceoncept, but the bureaucratic machine required to pull this off would be unimaginable. The infeasibility of this has been discussed here ad nauseum.

    #2 This is already indirectly accomplished for CCW permit holders. It'll be a lengthy and costly constitutional debate whether gun owner licensing is applicable for clay pigeon shooters. Hunters need licenses, and many (most?) states require hunter safety courses prior to getting a license. It's not exactly the same thing, but I think it's "common sense" that a hunter owns a rifle or shotgun.

    #3 I find this morally objectionable. There's a big difference between the government knowing I'm a "gun owner", compared to knowing the details of my arsenal. Why I might need any number or type of firearms is my business.

  18. jdege- are you sure you want that in print? " be civil war" Really? Come on.

  19. Again- anon- I publish these so my readers will know what you pro gun guys are actually thinking. Scary stuff.

  20. Sean- I give you credit for a thoughtful and articulate response at least which is something many on this blog seem incapable of writing.

  21. "are you sure you want that in print?"

    I'm not advocating, I'm predicting. Or perhaps explaining would be a better word.

    Universal registration would be followed by near-universal non-compliance. And I don't mean the >50% non-compliance that Canada's seen with their long-gun registry.

    When California implemented a registry on evil black rifles, it was estimated that there were 500,000 to 1,000,000 such weapons in civilian possession in the state. Fewer than 30,000 were registered.

    A nationwide registry would be unlikely to see more than 10% compliance. Which would be followed by the same sort of widespread illicit manufacturing and distribution - and widespread social acceptance of the same - that we saw during prohibition.

    This is exactly the sort of thing that could turn the three percenters from being a couple of hundred fools with delusions of self-importance into the multi-million force they dream of being.

  22. GMC- Since I am not publishing any more of your comments, I will quote you: " You assume that gov't has my best interests at heart. I make no such assumption; the reality is that all governments, left to their own devices, trend toward tyrranny. I have no intention to leave gov't to its own devices. If push comes to shove, an armed population makes the cost of tyrranny unacceptably high. " This is for Mike B in response to the registration of guns which GMC says no way is going to happen. I guess he will fight to the teeth for this one. So get ready for an armed population rising up against a duly elected tyrannical government dear readers. I can't wait!!!

  23. @mikeb302000

    In (1) exceptions would be made for family members if this ever made it to a judiciary committee. By the time lawmakers added all their exceptions, the measure would be so weakened it would most likely be abandoned.

    In (2), Sean already pointed out how we're almost already there, but the national trend right now is to follow Arizona's lead in constitutional carry, which is in the opposite direction. Oregon just introduced their version. Other states are following as an increasing number of states push the 10th Amendment to its limits.

    In (3), there is ample evidence that registration leads to confiscation. For this reason, such a law would be unenforceable because most law-abiding gun owners would keep their weapons secret. This happened with Canada's registry which is one of many reasons why there is a push to abolish the Canadian registry. Other historical examples have also shown repeatedly that passing unenforceable laws that turn law-abiding citizens into criminals is expensive and dangerous to society by weakening the rule of law. The 18th Amendment is a solid example of this.

  24. Some years ago, when there was actually a chance that Bubba might be able to actually push through these kinds of proposals, I wrote:

    "There _will_ be civil war in this country before there is meaningful civilian disarmament. Some days, talking to the anti-gun loons, I feel like I'm standing with a crowd of eight-year-olds, ankle deep in gasoline, trying to keep them from playing with matches."

    Of course, these days there's pretty much zero chance that you're going to accomplish anything of the sort. The most you can hope for is some sort of meaningless symbolic nonsense like a ban on standard-capacity magazines, and your odds of accomplishing even that are small.

    Still, you should remember - the Constitution was ratified on the express condition that a Bill of Rights would be amended to it, and that said Bill of Rights would recognize and protect the Individual Right to Keep and Bear Arms. Absent it, the ratification has no force, and the federal government no legitimacy.

    "The right of a citizen to bear arms, in the lawful defense of himself or the state, is absolute. He does not derive it from the state government, but directly from the sovereign convention of the people that framed the state government. It is one of the "high powers" delegated directly to the citizen, and "is excepted out of the general powers of government." A law cannot be passed to infringe upon or impair it, because it is above the law, and independent of the law-making power."
    - Cockrum v. State, 24 Tex. 394 (1859).

  25. So now I am thin skinned because I don't like being told I am naive and ill informed. It was done for my own good, I was told. This is so ridiculous that it bears repeating. You guys have no idea that you can't call people names for "their own good." I wonder if I did the same, would you just brush it off or get angry with me? Some of you actually do provide responses that are truly your opinion and disagree with my opinion in a semi or actualy reasonable fashion. If you think you are doing me a favor, forget it. I don't need your help. Move on to someone else's blog and see if they like your rude comments. If you don't think calling someone naive and ill informed is rude, then we are truly living in alternate worlds. I don't use those terms lightly and almost never tell anyone that to their face. That is where we differ. You have no compunction and no filters when it comes to making comments. You live in a world where this sort of talk is routine. I do not. This is my blog. If you can't do this in a reasonable way, then don't comment at all. I am writing for a wide audience, many of whom know better and find your remarks disgusting and rude.

  26. Things are getting more ridiculous the more comments I allow. Nice, though,jdege. I can usually count on you to provide me with the last word that will lead me to stop the comments. This one is particularly nice: " "There _will_ be civil war in this country before there is meaningful civilian disarmament. Some days, talking to the anti-gun loons, I feel like I'm standing with a crowd of eight-year-olds, ankle deep in gasoline, trying to keep them from playing with matches.""

  27. Dear readers, We have reached a point of no return and no useful purpose with these comments. Unless you have something different to say that hasn't already been said, don't send more comments. This thread has become nonsensical.

  28. Hi!

    We have different views. I'm fine with that, variety is the spice of life and if we all thought the same it would be mighty boring on this earth. We also have different understandings of people, guns, statistics, et cetera. Again, for the same reasons, fine. What I object to in this latest blog entry of yours is a factual error which any person, regardless of viewpoint, should recognize. It's okay, we all make mistakes.

    "But here is a great article about the common sense steps that can and must be taken to assure that guns don't fall into the wrong hands and that we provide the people and the research to make sure we are doing the right thing concerning prevention."

    The prohibition of magazines doesn't keep guns out of the wrong hands. That's the mistake I think you made. It doesn't accomplish anything towards the goals you cited. The article you characterize as "great" also makes two serious factual errors with regards to this prohibition - that these magazines were banned and that the new legislation will ban them again.

    They were never banned. The manufacture and importation of these magazines were banned. That is very different from banning their possession and transfer. Your mistake was a very small one, you probably just forgot to include a reason why this prohibition is necessary. The article's mistakes are huge.

    This prohibition that you advocate will place tens of millions of Americans in serious jeopardy of committing a felony offense. One of the examples I read of recently was widows - if a woman's husband dies and he owned a seventy year old Browning Hi Power 9mm pistol with the standard issue magazines - then that woman is automatically in possession of those magazines and is guilty of a felony. There is no exception for widows (or widowers).

    Another example which frightens me is that there is no exception for self defense. Under this legislation the lady who heroically grabbed the magazine from the Arizona loser's hands would be guilty of a felony. If a woman were to be home alone and a rapist were to break into her house or apartment and she were to defend herself with her husband's Glock, she would be guilty of a felony. That's a three year mandatory minimum federal prison term for a firearms violation. This sort of thing does happen throughout our nation. Under the legislation you support a rapist will serve less time in an easier prison than his intended victim. This is a gross miscarriage of justice.

    Under this legislation lending a firearm with one of the banned magazines to a friend so they may inspect it, or use it at the range, will be a federal felony offense. If I give my .22 rifle to my brother we will be both going to prison for three to ten years. If I hold my friends rifle case when we get to the range then we will both be looking at least 9 years in prison.

    The AWB was not at all like this. Different view points are fine. Small mistakes aren't that big of a deal. Bad reporting as in that article is only a small mistake. This prohibition is incredibly draconian, cruel, and unusual.

    I hope you will publish this comment, and I would really love to hear your thoughts about how this legislation will impact the typical American firearms owner, and why we deserve to be one routine act away from going to prison. This isn't nonsensical, and it directly relates to the purpose and content of your blog. I'd really like to know why you believe that anyone who merely holds a magazine they don't own by a particular date belongs in prison, even if it's for target shooting or for self defense from one of the evil people roaming the earth. I don't get it, but perhaps you can give me some insight into your perspective, and although I'm sure we won't change our minds, we can still learn from each other's different points of view.

    Have a great day!

  29. No more comments from me. I'm exhausted with all of your comments.

  30. Joan-

    I was able to stay pretty cordial until you said "P this is garbage" in the other thread and then soon after started not posting half of the things that I sent you. I don't know if P or I said something offensive, but from the outside perspective you seemed unreasonable. I would recommend letting people know what is going on behind the scenes, or just not saying anything at all to prevent misunderstandings in the future. Some of my comments have been a little terse, and for those I will apologize.

    I will ask of you, completely undeservedly, to indulge one request. When you discuss with people, they often present to you a formal argument with a progression of statements. Your response to this is often to just pick one thing and cast dispersions at it. But sometimes you respond with actual facts- I honestly didn't know that the Brady bill went into effect in 1994 (not 1995 like you said, but this actually makes your argument stronger). I have to admit that the timing of the drop in crime is impressive. As crime is dropping so steadily, maybe we've hit the equilibrium point, and our eternal bickering is the price we pay for just enough guns and just enough legislation. Anyway, I'd like to see more responses like that one.

    As for my fellow loons, they are a passionate bunch not because they're jerks (well, usually) but rather because they believe as I do- that the long term survival (and "thrival") of the nation depends on it. We would rather see people have the freedom to make mistakes, even tragic ones, and become wiser from them rather than legislating away that freedom to prevent mistakes.

    I'm sorry that you've paid the price for that freedom, and I wish you well.

  31. Anon- I can't possibly respond to everything said. I have a life and I receive a lot of comments. That is part of the game, I realize. But this is totally on my own time and you all have a lot to say and a lot of arguments that frankly, have often been answered many times over. Some I choose not to respond to because of the nature of the comments or questions and my choice not to say something that you all will use against me on your own blogs. I actually am of a different opinion about whether the nation depends on you all having any gun you want to carry any place you want to carry. I don't believe that is what the second amendment is about. And to say you are willing to see innocent people shot to death to have your own freedoms is absolutely a non starter for me and a scary idea that just plain is scary and, frankly, something I can not abide. I would venture to say that the majority is with me on that one.

  32. "And to say you are willing to see innocent people shot to death to have your own freedoms is absolutely a non starter for me and a scary idea that just plain is scary and, frankly, something I can not abide."

    See, there's the problem. There isn't any connection between innocent people being shot and my own freedoms. It's a construct of your own imagination.

  33. Okay, I guess that "freedom" point needs tweaking- we're not just saying "suck it up". I believe that when as many good people are carrying guns as possible that fewer innocent people are shot, not more. I also believe that the current violent crime trends and the exponential increase in people carrying concealed firearms both support this view.

    Does our nation depend on whether we're all carrying guns? No. You don't have to carry a gun. We'll do that for you. The long term success of our nation depends on not treating our citizens like they are predetermined to be stupid children, capable of being trusted with nothing more dangerous than a sharpened pencil. In my experience working with adolescents and in the military, people have consistently lived up to expectations, in the sense that if you expect nothing, you will get nothing. If you expect a lot, you will get far more than most parties expect. I expect society at large to be no different.

    The average age of the world’s greatest civilizations from the beginning of history, has been about 200 years. During those 200 years, these nations always progressed through the following sequence:

    * From bondage to spiritual faith;
    * From spiritual faith to great courage;
    * From courage to liberty;
    * From liberty to abundance;
    * From abundance to complacency;
    * From complacency to apathy;
    * From apathy to dependence;
    * From dependence back into bondage

  34. You are right. Your freedoms will not be affected by stopping easy access to guns by those who shouldn't have them so they can't shoot innocent people.

  35. japete - I am also sorry you and so many others have "paid the price for that freedom" I do not see the logic of, as anonymous wrote "We would rather see people have the freedom to make mistakes, even tragic ones, and become wiser from them rather than legislating away that freedom to prevent mistakes." That is not freedom, that is anarchy. I love liberty too.

  36. Did you make this stuff up? I don't believe it. We must be about at the end then of our great civilization. Surely we are closse to that bondage you mention here. I thought I had heard everything but this is a new one. And don't come back with your naive comment.

  37. Joan-

    Why are you lashing out again?

    I apologize for not attributing the quote properly. The quote is from a Scottish history professor from the University of Edinburgh in 1787. You'll note that the date approximates the birth of our nation.

    If you read the rest and then reflect on our current fiscal crisis, you will be even more convinced that now is not the time for apathy and complacency.

    “A democracy is always temporary in nature; it simply cannot exist as a permanent form of government. A democracy will continue to exist up until the time that voters discover that they can vote themselves generous gifts from the public treasury. From that moment on, the majority always votes for the candidates who promise the most benefits from the public treasury, with the result that every democracy will finally collapse due to loose fiscal policy, which is always followed by a dictatorship.”

    Those who do not learn from (or even bother to read) history are doomed to repeat it.

  38. A few of the gun rights commenters agreed to my first proposal about background checks and said the 2nd about licensing was partially in effect already but out and out rejected the 3rd about registration because we all know that leads to gun confiscation.

    Aren't you the same guys who, when convenient for your own argument, point out the correlation/causation thing? You are. But, now you want to say registration leads to confiscation. Although there may be examples of that, you cannot say it like that. Unless you're paranoid or being purposely obtuse, you know that in 21st centure America this is not going to happen.

    Registration of every gun to a licensed gun owner will practically eliminate straw purchasing. That's what we want not to disarm you (silly insecure paranoid little) guys.

  39. http://www.lorencollins.net/tytler.html

    "A democracy cannot exist as a permanent form of government. It can only exist until the voters discover that they can vote themselves largesse from the public treasury. From that moment on, the majority always votes for the candidates promising the most benefits from the public treasury with the result that a democracy always collapses over loose fiscal policy, always followed by a dictatorship. The average age of the world's greatest civilizations has been 200 years.

    "Great nations rise and fall. The people go from bondage to spiritual truth, to great courage, from courage to liberty, from liberty to abundance, from abundance to selfishness, from selfishness to complacency, from complacency to apathy, from apathy to dependence, from dependence back again to bondage."

  40. jdege- I have perused the article. What's your point? If you subscribe to this philosophy, then you and I disagree. At the end of the linked article: " And that is where the vice of misattribution lies. Perhaps the words speak the truth of democratic governments; or perhaps they do not. But either way, attributing the words to a scholar who never spoke them is to lend to them an authority and reliability that they do not deserve. Quotations should not be given fictitious attributions merely to lend credence to the messages they impart. To do so is to favor persuasiveness over accuracy, and to sacrifice truth for the sake of image."

  41. Joan-

    The point is not that democracy is doomed to fail, but that democracies have failed due to greed and well-meaning short sightedness.

    My girlfriend has a cousin who, like my girlfriend was neglected and abused, but unlike my girlfriend chose to cope with it by huffing chemicals. She insisted on getting pregnant (random guy she brought home from a club) and now has a three year old child that she has no idea how to raise. His physical needs are met, but she was shocked to discover that her parenting strategy of placing him in front of the TV or in a pile of toys while she spent most of the day on Facebook would prove to be inadequate. She never disciplines the child, never really interacts with the child, and insists that he's too young to understand the rules and that his chronic misbehavior and outright disrespect are somehow traits he genetically acquired from his father.

    Surprisingly enough, her father gave her a town house to live in, for which she has never voiced gratitude and which hasn't stopped her from openly disrespecting, insulting, and criticizing her father.

    Children, adults, and even animals crave stimulation, learning, and growth. Treating them as if they're too stupid to understand and abide by the rules is bad for the individual, and nearly guarantees that they won't abide by the rules. Giving them something to work toward and punishing them adequately when they break the rules virtually guarantees a healthier, happier, and certainly more productive outcome for the individual. And in this case, society.

    This country is not "too big to fail".

  42. Actually Joan, I agree 100% with one of your points. Wayne LaPierre is a festering sack of idiocy. Like Rush Limbaugh, and to a lesser extent Glen Beck, he does more harm to the cause he purports to support. Roughly 25 years ago, he conned the NRA into making him permanent Vice President. I seriously think Putin modeled his power grab on the same premise. I have a problem with a lot of the "Deals with the devil" the NRA makes. Backing the ouster of Tom Foley, and supporting the greater evil of Harry Reid.

    Fortunately there is Gun Owners of America, and Jews for the Preservation of Firearms Ownership. And the second organization doesn't even require you to convert. They figure we'll all end up in the cattle cars anyway if Sarah Brady, and Josh Sugarman get their way!

  43. Strong words. John B. I whole heartedly disagree with your politics and find them offensive, actually. To say that we will all end up in cattle cars is a statement based on no facts whatsoever but provacative enough to instill fear and parnoia into the hearts of those you want on your side.

  44. You didn't read it did you?
    I didn't say it! Cruise jpfo.org
    Their entire stance is that gun control is genocide. I may or may not agree wholeheartedly, but they are a closer ally than the NRA usually. You don't even know my politics. You'd find that we're more alike than not. In fact you'd probably find that except for the choice to own and carry a firearm, we could be clones of each other. I don't keep .50 BMG rifles around, they hit too hard at both ends. Those and the Machine Guns that keep you awake at night are pricy, bullet hungry, beasts. They'll do more damage to their owner's wallets, than they'll ever do to anything they're pointed at.

    We only oppose out of the principal of, "shall not be infringed." I'd rather face a Crip armed with a tec-9, than some guy with a .38 revolver, with most of the bluing worn off. Full auto is trash, if you're not trained properly. I'd cheerfully see it off the table. Unless I sold bullets that is.....

    If you could understand the zen like power of not doing, you'd probably have what you need. just Post, and keep breathing evenly, and I'm sure you'll understand.

    Understand I am not your enemy, and no matter how much you might believe you are mine, you aren't.

    And I don't think we'll get rounded up into cattle cars, I'll make a mistake with my insulin, dosing my diabetes eventually. You'll probably succumb to a car, a fall in the shower, or that breast cancer I ran 60 miles to combat last year, breaking my rule about not-trying being the best way to make a difference. Myself, I think the best way to curb gun violence, would be to accustom children to guns, and the safe handling thereof, at a very early age. Most gun tragedies involving children, happen because guns are forbidden, exciting, enticing, and there is no spot in a house that a child can't get to, if he wants to badly enough. Take that away by education as soon as the kid can talk. Eddie Eagle has done more in that regard than any program ever put forth by the VPC. I read the literature they send out. Both sides, somehow I got on everyone's mailing lists.

  45. Mike, I have to ask how in the world you think registration would prevent straw purchases? If someone passes a background check, purchases and registers guns, and then sells them off, how are you stopping them? Are you expecting the government to audit every single gun owner randomly to check and make sure that they possess all their registered weapons? Straw purchasers aren't normally going and buying 30 guns to pass along, more like one or two as a favor.

    The fact that nations like the UK and Australia enacted registration schemes, and then followed them up with confiscations, is enough for us to say we will never allow registration here. How are you going to guarantee that it wouldn't be used for confiscation? In addition, the government has no business knowing what my personal property is. It may be the government's business to know what I am doing in public if it can affect the public, but not what my personal property is. Hence, I'm fine with hunting licenses and concealed carry licenses, but not regulation just for ownership.


  46. "suspected of selling to straw purchasers " - the only evidence offered is that he refused to bow to Bloomberg and the Mayors Against Gun Owners and accept Bloomberg's 10 point plan.

  47. Though it is not clear in the article, there is some evidence that this gun dealer has sold guns illegally in the past.

  48. "mikeb302000 said...
    you know that in 21st centure America this is not going to happen."

    I'm pretty sure the English and Aussies told themselves some variation of that phrase. I'm wondering how many of them had to eat their hats after it happened.

  49. @Aztec: But they're not after your guns!??! Right?

  50. "Mike, I have to ask how in the world you think registration would prevent straw purchases? If someone passes a background check, purchases and registers guns, and then sells them off, how are you stopping them? Are you expecting the government to audit every single gun owner randomly to check and make sure that they possess all their registered weapons?"

    After purchasing a gun, which is then registered to YOU as a licensed gun owner, you must present yourself and the gun to the local police after three months and on a yearly basis thereafter to renew the registration. Failure to do so would result in a warrant for your arrest.

    Selling them off privately would require background checks on the new owner and a transfer of the registration of that particular gun.

    Now you tell me, how many straw purchasers would continue doing what they do?

  51. All of them -- because its already against the law to be a "straw purchaser".

    "it was destroyed in a fire"
    "It was stolen"

    Etc. etc. etc....registration won't work in the US.

    Keep commenting from Italy though Mr Expat, its amusing! When you arrive back in the US as a resident then we can have a discourse.

  52. Wrong Pat. The reason straw purchasing is so common now is because it's so easy to get away with it. Enterprising young people who aren't afraid to take a chance are making a living doing it. But, if detection after 3 months were assured, they wouldn't be so bold.

  53. "Insanity: doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results."

    So TWO countries that are similar to ours have recently followed registration with confiscation and yet we're being paranoid? So are you dishonest (and think we're too stupid to catch on) or are you being willfully ignorant because it suits your purposes?

    1. Registration is a SHORT step from confiscation and we will fight it at every step.

    2. We don't have a national IP address registry to fight pedophiles and hackers, we just go after the pedophiles and hackers.

    We need to solve the problem of violent crime by going after the source, not wasting time, money, and the nation's attention on a symptom.

  54. Take your pick, anon, as to your first question.

  55. I'll take "willfully ignorant because it suits his purposes" for a thousand, Joan. I like to give people the benefit of the doubt.