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The 5 Dumbest Examples of Pro-Gun Rhetoric and Why - The Political Garbage Chute
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Published on January 8th, 2013 | by James Schlarmann

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The 5 Dumbest Examples of Pro-Gun Rhetoric and Why


Guns. Other than abortion, there may not be a more sticky wicket through which to maneuver through in American politics. The enshrining of gun rights in our founding documents, written over 200 years ago when guns themselves were far different and inferior to the weapons of today, means that this country may always have a faction that is committed first to their right to own a gun, and then to all other American Ideals.

But what’s come out of the gun debate though are some really insanely stupid examples of rhetoric from the pro-gun side that sometimes sound like erudite positions, but ultimately are nothing more than shiny objects meant to distract us from actually talking about whether certain kinds of weapons have any place being purchased by civilians. Here now, I attempt to debunk all five of the dumbest pro-gun rhetorical arguments out there.

1. “Guns don’t kill people, people do.”

If there was ever an overused, oversimplifying shiny object in a debate, it’s this gem. The implication of course is that in the hands of the average, benevolent gun owner, guns are completely harmless. Which would be true, if it weren’t for the fact that gun accidents still happen. Small children still kill each other while playing with mommy or daddy’s gun. Of course guns kill people. So does cancer, AIDS,  or a heart attack. Guns kill. To deny that is to deny their very reason for existence.

I get what pro-gun folks mean when they use this axiom. It’s a way of sticking up for those law-abiding citizens who want to own a gun as part of their protection, or for whatever reason. We can have that discussion, and we can even have a discussion as to what kinds of guns should be okay for people to own “just ‘cuz.” But until we grow up and stop pretending that guns are anything but tools of homicide, regardless of who owns them, we will get nothing done on the subject.

Yes, we can all agree that until a gun rests in a person’s hand and they point that gun at someone and pull the trigger, that gun has done no harm to anyone. That’s not really the point though. In this country we treat things that are fun but still dangerous with a lot of caution. Roller-coasters can’t just be built in your backyard without a lot of money for permits and insurance. Why we can’t have the same level of insurance required for an assault rifle that we do for a roller coaster is a question I simply can’t answer.

2. “Cars kill more people than guns every year!”

Of course they do. But then again, when’s the last time someone loaded up their Studebaker with a thousand rounds of ammunition, broke into a school and used their car to shoot innocent people? It seems to be kind of hard to pick up a car and walk into a corporate building and shoot a few dozen people with it.  The point of course is that while a car is most certainly a utility that can be lethal when not operated correctly, but a gun can’t transport you and your family to Costco to stock up on toilet paper and red meat, can it? This is probably the most specious and insanely simplistic argument against gun control there is.

The idea behind it is that we’re supposed to become distracted by the idea of something killing more people than guns, and therefore see guns as being just barely lethal, if at all. Guns are harmless in the eyes of your average gun nut, don’t forget. You know, they’ve been trained and all that jazz. But the argument ignores the simple fact that guns do not have any other purpose than to kill. There are most certainly plenty of law-abiding citizens who own guns that do not ever intend for them to be used on another human being. But it’s not like guns have the ability to distinguish a human target from that of a different member of the animal kingdom.

There are plenty of things that kill more people than firearms do in this country. That doesn’t mean we’re doing enough to keep guns out of criminals’ hands though.

3. “The Second Amendment is there to protect US from the government!”

This could probably be called my very most favorite of all the pro-gun rhetoric. It’s born out of a very simplistic and incomplete view of the Second Amendment itself. It’s a very short burst of language, but from that burst grew America’s thirst for firearms, and perhaps some confusion over what our “right to bear arms” really means. Here’s the actual text:

A well-regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.

Everyone always gets hung up on the “militia” or “well-regulated” parts, but you hardly ever see anyone put the amendment both into its historical context, and its own context within the Bill of Rights. When the Second Amendment was written, the Founders had just overthrown an occupying nation that had attempted to disarm the colonists as a way of controlling them. The Founders, many of whom saw a large, standing army like the one we have now as Federal overreach, chose instead to make it an inalienable right to own a firearm, but not so that we can rise up against our government. The Founders figured since they also made Freedom of Speech, Expression, Assembly, and the right to vote (as long as you were white, male and property owning at the time, but that’s for another story) there was no need for an armed revolt.

The Second Amendment is nothing more than an antiquated and obsolete national defense strategy that leaned on the existence of state militias — known as the National Guard to us now — instead of one standing army. Over time the gun lobby has co-opted the Second to mean all sorts of things that just don’t jive with historical record or context. Sure, we can all agree now to have it mean something a little different, but to pretend that the Second was written as some kind of way to ensure we could violently overthrow our president is just inane and frankly completely counter-American in value.

Oh and Obama’s drones kind of make your AR-15 look pretty fucking useless, guy.

4. “Without the Second Amendment you couldn’t have the First!”

Yeah. Total bullshit. For starters, the Second Amendment was written to ensure that the most powerful country in the world, who we had just won our freedom and independence from, could not come back and simply station troops in our homes again. It was also written to ensure that our states would have the requisite firepower needed to defend themselves, should the Brits decide to come back and try for round two. But more importantly than that, it’s quite simply to debunk this silliness.

The First Amendment is what gave us the power to write the Second Amendment. Everything that is contained within the First Amendment is what gave us the balls to write an amendment to our Constitution that gave our citizens rights to arm themselves. This is not something that was done before. You see, the First Amendment, in the end, is the most important amendment. It’s the touchstone for all the other freedoms we enjoy, and it contains everything we fought and died for. But the Second Amendment isn’t needed to protect the First. The Second gets its power from the first. Only a truly free society would allow its citizens to carry weapons. The idea is that an armed populace in a free society had less to worry about because of the power that freedom of expression affords.

Perhaps the founders thought that if people were allowed to speak their minds freely, even to criticize their own government, the need for violent insurrection would be greatly reduced, and therefore armed rebellion wasn’t something they gave much thought to. Clearly though, it’s the First Amendment that makes every other amendment even possible. Therefore the power is not derived from the Second’s ability to make sure we can defend ourselves with guns. The guns derive their power from the words they’re being used to defend, if anything.

5. “If you want to stop gun violence, train everyone how to use a gun and require them to carry one!”

Okay. So let me get this straight. If I suggest that no one not in the armed forces or law enforcement has no need for an assault rifle, and therefore no one should own one, I’m a left-wing extremist wacko. But offering without any irony that the solution to the problem is simply to hand everyone a gun seems, well, stupid. I can debunk this one any number of ways, but I think the easiest and quickest, and truly the only way I need is to talk about cost. Who is going to pay for all those guns?

Do you think gun manufacturers will just give their guns away? Even if they offer them to the U.S. Government at a reduced price, that’s still billions of dollars that would have to be spent, just on the firearms alone. What about ammo? Who’s going to pay the weapons instructors? You know, it’s funny. The same people who suggest moronic solutions like this one are the same ones bitching about how Obamacare is going to tax everyone into oblivion. They’re the same people who think we spend too much on welfare, even though we spend twice as much on corporate welfare.

Government spending is evil, unless it’s spent on guns for the masses. But if anyone really thinks that arming every single citizen is the way to prevent gun violence, then I think either they’ve watched too many westerns, or not enough realistic documentaries about the Old West. Martial Law is no way to live, and when you have a mandate from the government that all citizens own a gun to protect them from the other citizens who are now mandated to have a gun, you have Martial Law.

 

 

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About the Author

James is the founding contributor and editor-in-chief of The Political Garbage Chute, a left-leaning satire and commentary site, which can be found on Facebook as well. You definitely should not give that much a shit about his opinions.



  • Dan Beamer

    I have been advocating liability insurance on guns for the past two years. It costs law enforcement about $40,000 to investigate every round of ammunition fired at a crime scene. Liability insurance would help pay our law enforcement rather then our taxes. It could also help reimburse damage done by guns to property and people.

    • http://www.facebook.com/pages/James-Schlarmann/210389595660963 James Schlarmann

      Hey Dan, do you happen to have a link to that data, about it costing $40k to investigate the rounds? I’d love to have it for future use!

      • Dan Beamer

        Sorry James I picked it up in a Sociology class a couple of years ago.

        • http://www.facebook.com/pages/James-Schlarmann/210389595660963 James Schlarmann

          Not a problem! I can do some research and probably find it. Thanks anywa, Dan!

          • Tuli

            Hey James, do you happen to have a link to that data, about it costing $40k to investigate the rounds? I’d love to have it for future use!

            No? I couldn’t find it either. I Wonder why.

        • Drew

          My attorney estimates his cost of defending me in a defensive handgun shooting at $50,000 per round fired. I carry $1,000,000 of umbrella liability insurance. It costs me $300 per year.

          When will journalists be required to carry insurance to cover the losses from unscrupulous publication, such as the names and addresses of gun owners in New York State as published by Gawker Media? I’ll bet it doesn’t cost only $300 per year.

          • http://www.facebook.com/pages/James-Schlarmann/210389595660963 James Schlarmann

            Gun licenses are public record. Why do you care if someone knows you have a gun? I thought gun owners were proud and loved to show off their finery?

          • Azdevnull

            Gun owners don’t like putting people in jeapordy needlessly. Here’s a little fact that you may not know: Most gun owners do not WANT to shoot someone. They will, but they do not want to. While Michael Moore may make it out like we’re all seething in anticipation to put a bullet in someone, we really do not want to have to kill someone. It’s like a seatbelt. I wear one, but that doesn’t mean that I want to get into an accident just to use the seatbelt/airbag/crumple zones. Any gun owner who really wants to kill someone SHOULD be looked at.

    • RonF

      It’s reasonable to presume that even a law-abiding driver will be involved in an accident and thus incur liability. It’s not reasonable to presume that a law-abiding gun user will be involved in a crime.

  • The Truth Fairy

    Well done, James.

    • http://www.facebook.com/pages/James-Schlarmann/210389595660963 James Schlarmann

      Many kind thanks, Ms. Truth Fairy!

      • RonF

        “I thought gun owners were proud and loved to show off their finery?”

        Why? On what basis do you think you know anything about gun owners? Do you know any personally? Do you judge all car owners by the few that maintain and exhibit their cars? Do you judge all home owners by the few that have showplaces and exhibit them in publications and open houses? Do you judge all gays or blacks by the actions of a few? Just how predjudiced are you?

        • http://www.facebook.com/ken.blan Ken Blan

          RonF, I AM a gun owner. I actually know very few people that do not have a gun of some sort in their home. And I can tell you from long experience, YES! gun owners do love to show off their “finery”. I own an 1894 Winchester 30-30. And a1850′s Sam Colt conversion. And a couple of cap & ball pistols from the early 1800′s, one a boot gun made by Henry Deringer. If you come to my house, and show the slightest interest, you will be looking at them all in a matter of moments!

  • livelychick

    The newest deflection is that we’ve never been invaded as a country because our would-be attackers are scared of our gun-toting citizens.

    • Pauly Brunner

      Gun toting idiots like to use flowery redirect when spouting their inane nonsense. What they quote is: You cannot invade the mainland United States. There would be a rifle behind every blade of grass. And they say it from Admiral Isoroku Yamamoto from WWII.
      3 problems with this;
      First, You have to remember that most really cool slogans, saying, photos or stories are outright LIES from the right. They lie to try to make a point. “If you can’t dazzle them with logic that baffle them with…well you know” It has been declared this attribution from Isoroku is unsubstantiated and almost certainly bogus, even though it has been repeated thousands of times in various Internet postings. There is no record of the commander in chief of Japan’s wartime fleet ever saying it

      The other problem with this argument is the thinking that we still fight wars like we did back in WWII where this bogus quote was supposedly had be said. In today’s military there are no front lines. Heck even we use drones to do the killing. Bomb strikes from miles away . People who think of wars like this are living in the past.

      Lastly, if there was an apposing military force that defeated our military and our government I doubt very much it would be stupid enough to even deal with the population. They would either gas or burn the population. An armed militia (rather an over paranoid over armed populace) would be no threat at all.

  • livelychick

    Oh, and well-stated!

  • Joe T.

    In a recent debate with a gun nut about citizens’ ability to fight off their gubnent with their own small arms weapons, I was presented with a counter argument of “well, the Vietnamese were able to kick our asses out of Vietnam with their weapons. We can do the same thing to the US government with ours.” Beautiful bit of brain fungus there, huh?

    Well I guess there’s no disputing that logic. Unless of coarse you fail to recognize any of the actual facts about that war. How the VC was sheltered and offered aid & military weapons by their neighboring countries & other regimes with similar world views. And how US military targets and counteroffensives were politically restricted, etc etc…

    Not only did I present my stubborn opponent with those war facts, but I also reminded him that I, as a former service member, worked on & have seem firsthand how much more advanced we’ve become at killing enemy combatants (Done strikes, smart bombs, stealth aircraft, etc) the last 40 years since the war in Vietnam. I also warned that he, with his beloved weapons, can be ruled a threat and eliminated as such in a matter of minutes from 100′s of miles away before he’s even able to utter the words Walker Texas Ra… Of coarse everything I told him fell on dumb ears.

  • http://anendlesswar.com The One True Dave

    Some gun-lickers will argue with you on point number three that the meaning of regulated at the time meant “functioning properly.” When they do, just do what I do. Ask them how something is determined to be functioning properly without a rule or law that sets the standard.

    I also point out how odd it is that so many believe that our service-members could easily be turned on our own countrymen, yet idolize those same troops. I served in the Army for most of my adult life and find it pretty insulting, really. We’re not all soulless killing machines that can simply be pointed at a target.

    When you inevitably hear the Hitler, Mao and Stalin howls, ask why we should expect Americans of today to act like the Germans, Russians or Chinese of more than a half century ago, rather than like the Australians and British, Scots, Welsh and Irish of today.

    Other than those minor quibbles, well done. I’ve been working on something similar at my own site, but something shiny crossed my gaze and I’ve neglected finishing the draft.

    • http://womenriseupnow.wordpress.com womenriseupnow

      Another subset of this style of lunacy are the ones terrified of being invaded by the UN’s Blue Helmets. This has become a pet stupidity of theirs that I’ve been enjoying taking pot-shots at lately.

      You can’t disturb them with facts. The U.N. has 950,000 blue helmets. That’s not enough to invade Ohio. That’s about 5% the size of the U.S. military, are they saying our military is not up to the job? It’s all gonna come to down to Zeke and Bubba when the Blue Helmets come in and make us faggotty veil-wearing bike-riding Socialist Muslims, or whatever. SMH.

      • Aimee

        Excellent point. The paranoia of the extreme right wing over the UN is astounding. The insanity that exists about the UN is mind boggling.

        • rodger

          You are absolutely CLUE LESS

          • http://www.facebook.com/pages/James-Schlarmann/210389595660963 James Schlarmann

            Clueless is one word. :)

      • karl baer

        There are less than 2,000,000 active military personnel. that makes the 950,000 blue helmets 50% not 5%. as of 2011 (Sept.) 1,468,364
        Source: Department of Defense.

        Read more: Active Duty Military Personnel, 1940–2011 — Infoplease.com http://www.infoplease.com/ipa/A0004598.html#ixzz2HbnPaTos

        Do you lie for a living or do you just pull stuff out of the air.

        • http://www.facebook.com/pages/James-Schlarmann/210389595660963 James Schlarmann

          Oh well, by all means then, the UN would TOTALLY be able to invade the United States. I’m sure the UN blue helmets don’t rely on American military strength for anything, right, Karl?

      • Laffin Dolfin

        Yeah, that UN, boy, they are a SERIOUS THREAT! Cuz, you know, the UN so totally has its crap together. Yeah, you wanna see how awesome the UN combat troops are, read Blackhawk Down. It’s like warfare by committee.

  • Tom Joad

    I want to go into detail about the “arm the teachers” and “arm everyone” idea. Just ten minutes of thinking of REALITY (i.e. not a tv show hero) will tell you how insane it is.
    For one thing,the last thing cops need as they roll up to a school shooting where they don’t know who, how many, etc. is a bunch of civilians, no uniform, wandering around with guns in their hands. Some genius replied earlier to this “well, the cops would know all the teachers by site” (seriously? this is the level the advocates are at?) no..they wouldn’t, and they couldn’t ALL keep track of changes, temps, etc. For another thing, you couldn’t KNOW that it wasn’t a teacher on the rampage.
    Then there is adrenelin, and the effect on fine motor skills. That experiment in a school where the select ones even KNEW something would happen that day, most couldn’t clear their holster in time before being shot, shot wildly..and it did not (and never does) go well. Violence that happens out of the blue, nobody is prepared for.
    So then, someone says “well, the teachers could herd their students into a closet, stand in the classroom and kill the perp if he came in”…or plug the other teacher coming in to tell them all clear. Or the police as they clear the room.
    Then you have fear. A teacher that feels threatened by a student is going to (this would happen regularly) remember they have a gun, and “stand their ground”…dead student
    Or students getting AT the gun (if it is safely locked up, how is it a deterrent).
    No…the whole thing is ridiculous. How about this, steel doors into the classroms so if a shooting started they could really LOCK-DOWN and not easily have someone go from room to room? THAT might have a chance.
    People making the gun proposal, I think, have seen too many movie heros. Life isn’t like that. Someone needs to tell them.

    • http://www.facebook.com/pages/James-Schlarmann/210389595660963 James Schlarmann

      Tom you are absolutely correct. I always say that the OK Corral is no place for kids to learn. I will never let my kids go to school in a prison. That’s what you call a big building with a bunch of people locked up inside that has armed guards posted outside.

    • Drew

      Fortunately, the people who do this kind of emergency planning are well aware of these issues and have addressed them. The Federal Flight Deck Program (armed pilots) is an excellent example. Police and security managers will continue to be ignored as they recommend that we do as much to protect our children from active shooters as we do to protect them from fires. Not a single child has died in a school fire since 1977, but almost a thousand children have been killed in school violence in the same period. Not every school can afford a police officer — and not even the airline industry can afford to put a reinforced cockpit door on every aircraft, even after 9/11. If we cannot trust principals to decide who can carry a gun in their school, how can we trust them with either the education or the lives of our children? One state has quietly allowed teachers to carry firearms, Utah, and they have had no mass shootings. Something to think about rather than attempting to misapply “common” sense.

      • http://www.facebook.com/pages/James-Schlarmann/210389595660963 James Schlarmann

        Hey Drew, Utah approved that measure in the last couple of weeks. Nice try though. But hey, if you want to put your kids into a police state, have at!

        • Azdevnull

          Well we haven’t had a mass shooting at a school that has allowed teachers to carry. And “if it saves one life…”

          • James Schlarmann

            Yes. Instead of behaving like adults, let’s just put more guns in our children’s lives. That sounds like a real winner of an idea! YAY GUNS!

          • Azdevnull

            Well it’s a better idea than putting up a sign that says “Target Practice for Crazy People” in the form of “Gun free zones”

            And keep in mind, those kids might never even see the teacher’s firearm. Their teacher might not even carry. I went to schools where there was always at least one police officer. I know… crazy thought. protect our children almost as well as we protect Wal-Mart.

            Every school has a sprinkler system, fire doors, fire alarms, fire extinguishers and even hoses. Everything in the school is designed to prevent a child from fire. What do they do to protect the kids from criminal activities? They put up signs. “No drugs” “No Guns” “No smoking” It’s like putting up a sign that says “No Fires” and that being it.

    • blueybrink@yahoo.com

      [DOGS not GUNS] deterrent for school shooting violence…

    • RonF

      First, it’s interesting to see that politicians in Washington, D.C. send their kids to schools like Sidwell Friends (where among others the President sends his kids) that have a dozen armed guards (hired by the school, NOT including the Secret Service) but don’t want us to have the same protection for our kids.

      Second – understand that there’s a thing called “deterrence”. Killers like this are cowards. When the cops show up they either give up or shoot themselves. They go to schools and theaters that are “gun free zones” because they know they won’t meet resistance. They don’t go to schools with armed guards and places where people are permitted to carry arms because they know there will be people there that can shoot back. So the scenario you propose doesn’t actually happen.

  • buricco

    As always, I believe the right answer is somewhere in between.

    10 USC §311 defines the “militia”. A perhaps more responsible way of handling the gun thing is, everyone who registers for selective service, there could be some kind of training thing they are required to attend, and through passing that, are enabled to *acquire* arms (not saying anything on the matter of retaining them) for the course of the next year. This “militia” was, I surmise, intended to be in lieu of having a standing army. (Such a situation might make waging wars of aggression much more difficult…THAT’S FINE BY ME!)

    • http://www.facebook.com/pages/James-Schlarmann/210389595660963 James Schlarmann

      That’s at all a terrible idea. I would support that. But just make it volunteer. I myself have no interest in owning a gun. That’s what video games are for, right?

    • RonF

      “This “militia” was, I surmise, intended to be in lieu of having a standing army. ”

      Read Federalist Papers 26 – 29 (written by some of the men who wrote the Constitution in order to defend it and encourage it to be passed). While they recognized the need for the Feds to have a standing army, they feared it as a threat to liberty. So the militia was in part in existence to supplement or even obviate the need for a standing army, and in part existed to ensure that the States could defend themselves against the Feds’ standing army. That’s why Article I, Section 8, sentences 15 and 16 required the Feds to pay for the militia but gave the power to appoint the officers and command the militia to the States – so that their loyalties were formost to the States and not the Federal government.

  • Dave

    I agree entirely with what you say, apart from the war of 1812, that was a war that the USA started.

  • Heather

    Can you please make a valid argument against this argument for guns, because this is the one I hear more than your 5.
    6. If we make them illegal, guns will just go into a black market and criminals will still be able to get them. If I do not own a gun, because I am a law abiding citizen, then I am defenseless against a criminal with a gun. Criminalizing them will just make them harder to control and regulate, sort of like the illegal drugs trade. Shouldn’t they be legal so that the government can regulate gun owners?

  • http://jessicasideways.com/ Jessica Sideways

    The article was spot-on, except for one thing: The War of 1812 was started BY the United States, not by England. To quote Wikipedia:

    The United States declared war in 1812 for several reasons, including trade restrictions brought about by Britain’s ongoing war with France, the impressment of American merchant sailors into the Royal Navy, British support of American Indian tribes against American expansion, outrage over insults to national honor after humiliations on the high seas, and possible American desire to annex Canada.

    This is backed up by a citation in the previous article that I trust you can look up yourselves. And England/Canada defended itself effectively, so much so that we look back positively on the War of 1812 in a way that the United States does not and yes, it is asked in the Canadian citizenship test.

    • http://www.facebook.com/pages/James-Schlarmann/210389595660963 James Schlarmann

      I should have been more clear. I simply meant to reference the War of 1812 as being one of the last times a foreign country made war against the US on American Soil. But I can see where my choice of words would have made it seem otherwise. Perhaps a revision is needed.

      • http://jessicasideways.com/ Jessica Sideways

        Actually, the Americans made war against the British and the British were defending themselves from invasion. The subsequent invasions of American territory by the British (such as when our forces burned down the White House and a few other choice buildings in the District of Columbia) happened after the battle at Ft. George, in Canada.

      • http://facebook Kathryn Hall

        Actually, Japan invaded the Aleutian Islands, Alaska, in WWII.
        Our founding fathers realized that change would be inevitable and that new advances in science and human thought would change society. So they gave us a mechanism in our constitution to make the changes needed for society to function in the future. They never meant to enshrine civilian gun ownership as an unchanging right, it was meant to protect Americans from foreign invasion through a government regulated and controlled militia.
        The evolution of weapons of mass killing requires new societal responses to the use of assault weapons and weapons of mass killing. But it is not just about controlling the sale of guns. It is about desensitizing our children to violence, that encourages violence. We need to stop that. It is about giving treatment and assistance to people with severe mental health illnesses before they are so ill that revenge or mass killing seems like a logical thing to do. It is also a cultural attitude, Canadians have the right to own guns and hunt. They do not have anywhere near our rates of killing and violence that we, as Americans, take for granted. We need to look at multiple ways to prevent mass killings. Gun control is only one part of the equation. But if guns don’t get into the hands of killers, they can’t use them to kill people .

        • Joel

          I agree with parts of your argument. Everyone wants to jump on the assault weapon band wagon. In the Aurora shooting most of the people were shot with a pump action shotgun. The highest law in the land is murder correct? The people committing these mass shootings know this but it hasn’t stopped them. Do you think another law against guns is going to stop them? All you will do is push the whole gun business underground then there will be no government control. The other issue is most gun owners are not going to just turn in their guns. Are you ready to pay to send police or military forces in to search every home in America? I don’t think anyone stops to think of just how many firearms are actually out there. They have been mass produced since the early 1900s. You are looking at millions of weapons just in the last 10 years.

    • Alison

      With all due respect…and no ill intent I feel compelled to say that Wikipedia should never be quoted or used as a resource because ANYONE can post information on ANY subject on there… it’s not always factual. It is not an acceptable resource for citations in college so I wouldn’t believe everything you find there.

  • Heather

    When I was a kid, I grew up on a military base and yes, maybe I did feel safer because all of our dads (not many moms at the time) had a gun in the house… HOWEVER these were soldiers, trained to use the gun, required to keep up with their training, they were mostly young athletic men… It was more about their training then the gun itself that made us feel safe.

    If I knew that all my neighbors in the suburbs owned a gun, I think I would be semi-frightened.

    • Bob

      As a gun owner I resent this comment. I keep loaded guns in the house. We have no children. My wife and I average about 1200 rounds per year each, more than a lot of military minimum training, and substantially more than most police training. When I showed my wife the qualifications that the state police here in Michigan have to go they she laughed at how easy it is compared to what we shoot.

      The point about guns don’t kill people, people kill people in the article above started out on point, but ended in a train wreck. My gun is NOT a “tool of homicide”. Homicide is killing someone that does not deserve it. My guns are for two things, recreation and self defense. My gun has never been aimed at a human being. If it ever was to be, it would be only as a last resort to prevent imminent death. I have a hard time with you believing that a murdrer has more of a right to live than I do.

      • Heather

        I didn’t say a murderer has more of a rigt to live than you. I jsut think a gun names a horrible tool for self defense. If a rapist grabs me from behind and my gun is in my purse, I am screwed, not to mention he can now go into my purse and use my own gun against me. A gun makes a way better tool for offense. I don’t think that making guns will keep them out of the hands of criminals, so we mine as well have law abiding citizens have them too. I am glad that you practice shooting your ass off, but I believe, MOST people who own a gun, don’t take that much time to train, and if you don’t it makes owning it pretty useless..

  • John Bozzo

    The Second Amendment was obviously written to assert a legal basis for colonists to form a national army and state militias to seek our liberty from the British.
    While the Supreme Court has ruled that the amendment provides for private ownership of guns, the court has also ruled that reasonable rules regarding gun ownership are also legal.

    • Jake

      Umm…the Second Amendment was written long after we sought our liberty from the British. Next… at the time the Second Amendment was written there was no national (standing) army. The Second Amendment refers to militia, which were local citizen “armies”, and I hesitate to use the word “army” because they weren’t all that well organized and the “soldiers”, every man in the town, weren’t all that well trained either.

    • RonF

      John – please read Article I, Section 8, Sentences 15 and 16 of the U.S. Constitution and then read Federalist Papers 26 – 29. Then your opinion of what the basis for having State militias (which were established long before any of the States even thought of separating from England) was under the Constitution. In short, you’re partially right but also partially quite wrong. Please do your homework.

  • Diane

    I keep hearing these gun-toting people talk about what a difference it would have made in that movie theater if all of those folks had been armed. Am I the only one who realizes that the body count would have been off the charts with that? When all you can see in a dark theater is gunshots coming from all around you, how do you decide who the bad guy is? All those gun nuts would have been taking each other out right and left, along with anyone who didn’t make it under the seats in time. What lunacy!

    Regulate, regulate, regulate!

    • RonF

      “I keep hearing these gun-toting people talk about what a difference it would have made in that movie theater if all of those folks had been armed.”

      The difference it would have made is that the theater was quite noticeably posted as a gun-free zone. If it was not so posted and the shooter would have known that there were likely people in there carrying guns, he wouldn’t have shot it up in the first place.

  • bryan

    It isn’t unconstitutional for our Gov to regulate guns. It is only unconstitutional if the Gov denies us the right to bear arms.

    • http://www.facebook.com/pages/James-Schlarmann/210389595660963 James Schlarmann

      That, Bryan, is a very astute and important point that I wish more people understood. It is after all, the CRUZ of the argument.

      • Bob

        Using that argument we could re-instate the fee that black people had to pay to vote, because it does not deny them the right to vote.

        A right is a right. Could we ban Twitter because it is a High Capacity means of expressing your first amendment right to free speech? I would argue there are more idiots on twitter than there are people doing stupid things with guns.

        Keep in mind, in the last thirty years with only one exception, every single mass shooting happened in a gun free zone. Adding a new law will not change the desire to murder. Work on that instead.

      • RonF

        James, first, that would be “crux”, not “cruz”. Second, “… shall not be infringed” puts a pretty high barrier on the extent to which the government can regulate arms. Basically, you have to prove that any regulation you propose will provide a benefit to public safety that outweighs “… shall not be infringed”. Take a look at gun crime statistics – especially those that show that violent crime either stays the same or goes down in areas when 2nd Amendment civil rights are respected and generally goes up when 2nd Amendment civil rights are restricted. That’s why the 7th Circuit of Appeals told the State of Illinois that they cannot ban concealed carry – there’s no way to show a benefit to public safety thereby that outweighs people’s civil rights.

  • Robert Messmer

    So the US DECLARED war in 1812 against Britain because Britain was kidnapping and enslaving American sailors as well as stirring up the Indians to attack and kill us. Doesn’t mean the US STARTED the War of 1812 any more than our declaration of war against Germany and Japan means we started WWII. Just because the British army had not attempted to land and invade doesn’t mean that Britain did not start the war.

  • http://www.facebook.com/sean.long.568 Sean

    From the article:
    [[ But until we grow up and stop pretending
    [[ that guns are anything but tools of homicide,
    [[ regardless of who owns them, [...]

    This makes me want to find the author, grabhis or her lapels, and scream a big hearty “FUCK YOU” in their asshole face.

    My uncle, for OVER FORTY YEARS, absolutely positively HAD to hunt, to keep himself and his family fed through the winter. HE didn’t live out in the middle of nowhere, eitehr … he lived in Friendship, Maine – on the coast near Waldoboro, Rockport, etc.

    His _job_ was being a sandblaster in the shipyards in Bath, Maine. Being as far north as they were, that job was seasonal; every winter, he’d be laid off. Every spring, he’d be re-hired. For the four or so months in between … he had to rely on money carefully saved up and hoarded, and on the fruit of his hunting efforts.

    His guns never hurt a person. His guns were never even used to threaten anyone – even when doing so would have been 110% legally justified (like the night a drunk-driving asswipe murdered his father – my grandfather – IN HIS BED, then threw the keys to hsi truck into the long grass in the 2am dark).

    No, despite even things like that, never once did he use those guns, nor permit them to BE used, in such a fashion.

    He DID use them to put food on the table for himself, and his wife, and his son. For _decades_. _His_ guns were implements of SURVIVAL, not homicide.

    So, to the author of that article? FUCK YOU. Fuck you in the ass with a rusty-nail-studded two-by-four. >_<

    • http://www.facebook.com/pages/James-Schlarmann/210389595660963 James Schlarmann

      Feel better now? I already replied to his on the AATP page, but I’ll say the same thing here. Guns were not invented as a means to hunt. That’s a benefit we get from them, but they are not benign instruments of survival. Guns were invented in China as a means of war, nothing else. But thanks for fucking me in the ass violently in your fantasies.

      • http://www.facebook.com/sean.long.568 Sean

        No, I don’t feel better.

        And you’re welcome, because you deserved it.

        See, here’s the thing: you didn’t say that guns were _invented_ to kill people. You didn’t even say that guns _primary_ purpose was or still is killing people.

        You said that their _ONLY_ use is to commit homicide “regardless of who owns them”. Which amounts to accusing every firearm owner of being homicidal. No exceptions.

        Can you at least admit that your wording constitutes a pretty damnable insult to the millions of Americans who own guns, but _aren’t_ murderers-to-be …?

        Oh, maybe do me one small favor: thank AATP for banning me from their page for daring to contradict the party line – angry tone or not. I’ve seen them leave TEA party, pro-ultra-conservative spewage up … but one angry non-conservative who points out something wrong with their party line? Booted, just like that. :P

        So much for valuing diversity, eh?

        • http://www.facebook.com/pages/James-Schlarmann/210389595660963 James Schlarmann

          They are tools of homicide. Again, they weren’t invented to do anything but kill other humans. I didn’t realize that I had to spell out the history of guns every time I discussed them. I won’t admit to my words meaning anything they didn’t mean. Guns were invented to kill other humans on the field of battle from a distance greater than the weapons at the time. Like any technological advance, the original intent was modified when hunters started using them to hunt. But I’m not retracting or apologizing for anything. If YOU were insulted by my decision to simply refer to guns as they actually are, that’s on you, and any other gun owner who chooses to take it that way.

          Let me ask you this one simple question. What does a person own a gun for that doesn’t hunt with it?

          • http://www.facebook.com/sean.long.568 Sean

            “They are tools of homicide.”
            No. Homicide is only _one_ use to which they can be put. I will readily grant, that killing people was teh _original_, first, design premise of firearms.

            But since then, other uses have been devised.

            “Again, they weren’t invented to do anything but kill other humans.”
            So? They were invented over six hundred years ago. Six centuries is a long, long time. And in that span of years, we’ve found other uses for them.

            Besides which, if you’re going to take the first use somethign was ever put to, and stick that as it’s “only” purpose for all time?

            We better hurry up and enact some stringent crossbow control laws, then. Because, guess what? Killing people was their only purpose, at the time they were invented.

            “Guns were invented to kill other humans on the field of battle from a distance greater than the weapons at the time.”

            Hahahaha! No, no they weren’t. The earliest man-portable guns were horribly inaccurate beyond a very short range. Bows and crossbows easily outranged them, and were more accurate to boot.

            “What does a person own a gun for that doesn’t hunt with it?”
            Murdering innocent watermelons. Slaughtering defenseless paper targets.

            I know, such horrible things. OH, the humanity!

            ” If YOU were insulted by my decision to simply refer to guns as they actually are, that’s on you, [...]”

            Would you say the same, after using a racial epithet?

            Would you say the same thing, about someone blaming a woman for being raped?

          • http://www.facebook.com/pages/James-Schlarmann/210389595660963 James Schlarmann

            You can tell the Mongols how ineffective the first guns were.

          • http://www.facebook.com/sean.long.568 Sean

            The same Mongols, who conquered almost all of Eurasia? With bows and horses? Mm-hm.

          • http://www.facebook.com/pages/James-Schlarmann/210389595660963 James Schlarmann

            The very same ones! You do know your history right? Who drove the Mongols out of China?

          • Bob

            Two points I would like to address.
            1) Homicide is murder. Shooting someone in war is not murder, so it is not homicide. Shooting someone in self defense is not murder, therefore not homicide. Shooting an animal while hunting is not homicide. Shooting a target is not homicide. I own a single shot bolt action 22. Arguably one of the least powerful guns made. It is a target gun. Explain how this paper puncher is ONLY a tool of murder.

            2) “what does a person own a gun for that doesn’t hunt with it?”
            I own multiple guns, and none of them were bought with the intention of hunting, and none have ever been used for hunting. I one guns for two reasons. The first is because I like to shoot. Shooting an egg at 300 yards is FUN. It takes practice and skill. The second reason I own guns is self defense. As stated earlier, shooting someone in self defense is not homicide, it is self defense.

            I’ll pose it like this, if someone is threatening to murder me I have two choices: die or defend myself. You are arguing that it is morally superior to die. You are arguing that the murdrers life is more important than mine. I disagree.

          • James Schlarmann

            Homicide is the killing of another human being. Grab your dictionary and check it out.

          • Bob

            Google definition: the deliberate and UNLAWFUL killing of one person by another; murder.

            Cambridge Dictiinary: (an act of) murder.

            Even if I did accept your definition, impersonally one guns that are Not designed for killings person (target rifle), so that invalidates your argument.

  • Denis

    re point 5.
    The “philadelphia” STUDY SHOWED THAT GUN OWNERSHIP INCREASED the likelihood of being killed – by a factor of FOUR ! Guns make you LESS safe, not more safe.

    Australia prohibits gun ownership “for safety”. Citing safety as a reason to own a gun will mean that NO LICENECE will be granted. That is IMMEDIATE and AUTOMATIC.

    Gun shops in Australia promoting or citing personal safety as a reason – can be fined UP TO TEN MILLION DOLLARS ! Yes ! TEN MILLION !

    Guns are NOT SAFE !

    • Liam Mykael O’Srutheain

      Absolute bullshit! It is pointless to cite a “study” without giving any information about its METHODOLOGY, WHO managed it, their credibility, etc. “Statistics” are a political game. They have often been made up. “Studies” are frequently proclaimed without any way to verify sources. If people in Australia are dumb enough to believe that nonsense, then they deserve to lose their liberty.

    • Bob

      I have seen site of the data used in these studies. Here is how they are misleading. They say “a gun is four times as likely to be used on a family member than a criminal”. Sounds scary on the surface, everyone envisions a criminal taking your gun and shooting you with it. What they don’t mention is that included in that statistic are some things that take away from its credibility. For example, suicides are counted. Do they genuinely believe that if that mentally ill person did not have the gun then they would decide to not commit suicide? They also included incidents where a battered wife shot her husband while he was trying to kill her. In that case he was a criminal. They did NOT include times where a criminal was shot at but not hit, or times where a criminal was scared away by the presence of the gun even when it was not fired.

      How the studies are done tend to undermine the credibility of the study to the point they are nothing but a complete fabrication.

      • James

        While your point is correct that the study includes things like suicide, your argument isn’t really sound. Yes, people who have access to guns and are “suicidal” are much more likely to commit suicide than those who don’t. Because guns are easy and a quick way to do things. So if you have a gun in your house and you think about committing suicide, you’re MUCH more likely to kill yourself than if you had suicidal thoughts but don’t have a gun handy.

        Same thing with the accidents and domestic violence. Do people accidentally kill one another without a gun? Sometimes, but rarely. With a gun the probability skyrockets. And do people get killed in domestic violence without a gun? Sometimes, but again, if a gun is in the house the potential for a generally non-life threatening event to turn into one is immense.

        That’s why these studies actually work against your argument. Having a gun around your home makes your house MUCH more dangerous. Not because a burglar will take it from you (though that can and has happened) but because of all sorts of potentially perilous events that would be otherwise non-lethal if the gun wasn’t in your home.

        • Bob

          If you are getting rid of them due to accidents, why not eliminate cars, as car accidents kill many more people, by several orders of magnitude. Or get rid of pools, which kill about 12 times more children than guns do. Or get rid of solid foods, as choking kills more kids under twelve than guns do. Or get rid of doctors, because misdiagnosis and malpractice killes about twice as many kids as guns do. The list goes on and on.

          • James Schlarmann

            Because cars aren’t fucking guns. That’s why. It’s sort of simple to grasp, and I’m actually just tired of pro-gun people acting as if they can’t grasp the fucking difference between a firearm and a car. It’s insulting to EVERYONE’S intelligence to use that dumb fucking analogy.

  • Trent

    I didn’t know we lived in a communist country of cowards. The creators of this country would be ashamed. U take my freedom and ill take yours.government should not interfere with religion. The economy, or a person’s liberties. The only reason Obama got reelected is because he gives government money out to people for free.I’d vote for someone if they paid me too!you’re more likely to be killed by your doctor than an armed assailant

    • James

      The government shouldn’t interfere with the economy?

      It’s arguments like this which always make a huge chunk of folks on the right look like complete buffoons.

      And Obama doesn’t give government money out to people for free. Welfare and all of the social services were around LONG before Obama took office and they’ll be around long after he’s gone.

      But don’t let the facts get in the way of a good story.

    • http://anendlesswar.com The One True Dave

      “The only reason Obama got reelected is because he gives government money out to people for free.I’d vote for someone if they paid me too!”
      Please keep believing that and voting accordingly.

      “you’re more likely to be killed by your doctor than an armed assailant”
      So there’s not much need to have a gun for self-defense, right?

  • tmw

    going with the logic of “arguement” number 5, the best way to prevent wars and secure global peace would be for every (!) county to have an atomic bomb.

    before anyone points this out: yea the cold war basically had this, but then that was only 2 countries. and i am not sure if they would feel secure if some countries in the middle east had an a-bomb nowadays.

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  • Grits.N.Jowls

    Let me succinctly disagree and call this article out as the leftist, anti-gun garbage it is.

  • Delphinus13

    This article is quite frankly the dumbest one I’ve read in quite a long time. At no pojnt did the author put forth anything resembling a coherent thought. Everyone who has wasted valuable minutes coming to this site and reading this is now dumber for having read it. I award the author no points, and may God have mercy on his soul.

    • Political Garbage

      Yeah, we remember when we saw “Billy Madison” for the first time too, you unoriginal bahstid! #AdamSandlerThinksYoureaCunt

  • Scottie La Botte

    3 and 4 are wrong. Go read Heller and see what the justices say is the purpose.

    • Political Garbage

      Heller has nothing to do with the Second Amendment protecting the First in any way, shape or form. Heller refers to the kinds of restrictions one can put on owning a gun, and in fact Heller upheld many weapons bans still on the books.

      Does putting your penis into a gun somehow make you incapable of dealing in the world of reality?

      • Scottie La Botte

        Did you read Heller or did you just listen to the media. The judges said the the purpose for the second amendment was so we the people could defend ourselves from a tyrannical government. You sir have taken a very logical screen name.

  • ronwf

    “A well-regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.”

    “Everyone always gets hung up on the “militia” or “well-regulated” parts, but you hardly ever see anyone put the amendment both into its historical context, and its own context within the Bill of Rights.”

    Then let me do so. First, you should read Federalist Paper #29 at http://thomas.loc.gov/home/histdox/fed_29.html, “Concerning the Militia”, and also read the Constitution’s provisions regarding the militia. What you will see is that (as you correctly point out) the Founders were afraid of enabling the Federal government to command a standing army. However, as you do not point out they realized that at times it would be necessary. So the militia had two purposes. One was to provide a military force in the absence of a standing army. But the other – which you do not discuss at all – is to protect the security of the free States against the threat to the same that a Federal standing army represents. This is also why the Constitution provides that a) the Federal government must fund the State militias, but b) the States select their officers. This thus ensures that the Federal government funds a counterbalance to it’s own standing army, but that said counterbalance has it’s primary loyalty to the State.

    And if you want to stand up a militia on short notice, the best way to do it is to ensure that the people are already armed and have had practice in how to use those arms. Thus, the Second Amendment and why it’s worded the way it is. Understand that in the Founders’ day – and even now, if you read the Militia Act, the militia is understood to be pretty much anyone old enough and able enough to bear arms. In the present day the militia, by Federal law, is comprised of two parts. The organized militia is essentially the various States’ National Guard units. The unorganized militia is every male not in the organized militia between the ages of (IIRC) 18 and 45. The unorganized militia is subject to being called up and pressed into service, whether you or they like it or not.

    • Political Garbage

      A) Everything mentioned in your comment was written nearly 200 years before the advent of the nuclear bomb and the rise of the United States Military.

      B) Therefore, all of what you said is actually rendered completely obsolete and irrelevant.

      • ronwf

        What do nuclear weapons have to do with this? Perhaps you could present your reasoning.

        As far as the U.S. Military goes, 1) the Second Amendment was written after the Army and the Marines were created, and 2) you might notice that a great many insurgents around the world have been able to effectively resist the U.S. military while depending on little more than small arms.

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