Nitewatchman wrote:I'd be interested to see happenings from before the supreme court ruled definitively that it was an individual right where there was any problem with private gun ownership.
Well there was no problem with drinking and driving.
There was no problem with priests snuggling boys.
There was no problem with blacks not voting.
There was no problem with women not voting.
There was no problem with interracial marriage being illegal.
There was no problem with dapper gentlemen existing, because they were hiding.
Because nobody gave a crap to fix those things a hundred years ago.
Just because nobody had a problem with those things doesn't make any of them right either.
Yeah, but those are completely separate issues. There's nothing wrong with owning a gun, just like there's nothing wrong with owning a car. It's what you do with it that makes it dangerous, and before you go there, bombs and whatnot don't make sense, since they're expressly for the purpose of destroying things and people. Guns have other uses, such as personal defense, competitive shooting, and hunting. Those other examples you gave are completely unrelated and just an attempt to sensationalize the issue. We didn't take away everyone's cars when they used them irresponsibly, we instituted programs to create more responsible citizens. The effectiveness of said programs is questionable as far as annihilating the problem, but it was still a far superior course of action to just saying, "NO MORE CARS!" and being done with it; we actually sought to deal with the people on that issue and not just try and make the specific course of action they were taking impossible, which does nothing to change the individuals involved. I would point out, though, that if you're going to link the response to drunk driving and the response to gun violence so closely, it did bring about greater safety features in vehicles. But the link between vehicle safety features and what sorts of weapons are and aren't allowable is a little weak, as the safety features did not impede the performance of the machines.
Of course, gun rights are certainly different than vehicular ownership and drinking and driving, but that doesn't mean they're different in some negative sort of way. We don't need them for some immediate, every-day use, but they do serve as a preparedness measure for personal defense, and as stated have recreational uses. You can say that's the job of the police all you want, but they aren't omnipresent, and on top of that, putting all the pressure on them to keep everyone safe all the time isn't a good idea. If nothing else, it just puts us in danger of ending up in a police state(and certain people say we already are beginning to live in one), as they'll need more and more control to actually keep us safe if we start throwing out the means to our own protection.
Now, if we're going to be supporting the assault weapons ban, that's a little different than just getting rid of guns in general. If you really think people having access to certain firearms or types of firearms is a problem, and there are reasonable arguments for that, then you should still be just as pissed as pro-gun people are. The assault weapons ban is TRASH as far as doing anything effective. Assault weapons, as they were classified 94-2004 and as they will be classified again, are just weapons with military cosmetic features. Features that have almost NO EFFECT on the function of the gun.
Now, certainly some iconic "assault weapons" will be banned, but most of these have such a high price tag that criminals don't even bother using them, since they can't afford them. I looked at the list from the old ban, and all the qualifiers for an assault weapon, and it was nonsense. People aren't lying when they say that most of what it dealt with was cosmetic features. They really weren't. Most of the stipulations allowed for semi-automatic clip fed guns, so long as they didn't have something stupid like a laser sight AND an externally attached spare magazine on them. It basically limited their features, but allowed the semi-automatic action and removable clip to remain. Which is where all the killing business came from.
And the ten-shot clip thing isn't even based on anything reasonable; one of the guys who founded Ruger firearms suggested and pushed for it because he just thought it was a safe number. The fact that there are only ten bullets doesn't really change a whole lot; reloading a gun with a removable clip is easy and takes little to no time. Unless the guy runs out of ammo when he's five feet away from you, you won't even get a chance to tackle him.
Another thing is the fact that, yeah, what we're concerned about because of Sandy Hook is keeping the guns away from the mentally ill. Go read the wikipedia page on Columbine. Seriously. If you're going to make an argument for the proposed legislation, GO READ IT. These two kids acquired firearms and extended clips covered by the ban illegally, and two of the weapons they used weren't even banned to begin with; they just modified their shotguns illegally after they got them. The police even KNEW they had them a year or so in advance, but they didn't do anything.
If you're so adamant about gun control, and this isn't just in response to Tzan, at least have the balls to push for what you really need to try and get the effect you're going for; forced buy-backs and incredibly strict laws like those found in the UK and Australia. Otherwise, it's just going to be another worthless law that inconveniences gun enthusiasts for the sake of consoling the public but ultimately doing nothing to solve the problem at hand. At least that would do a bit to stop some mentally unstable individuals from lazily purchasing guns(since really, it is very easy to get a hold of them) and shooting up schools.
I will also point out that out of all the executive actions Obama took to attempt to deal with the problem, only two dealt with mental health. He wants to make sure the FBI has proper access to medical records for background checks, and he's putting Joe Biden in charge of figuring out if we can blame video games or not. Nothing to actually help the mentally unstable; just some crap to attempt make sure they can't hurt us.
I feel like if we institute background checks for ammunition purchases, background checks for private sales(which Obama does have on the table, and I think it's a good idea), and a required psychological exam within so many months of purchasing a firearms, things would get better(Not that they're that bad as it is), at least as far as violence involving legal guns goes. With the new healthcare stuff, we should be able to just get psychological examination for free anyways, so I don't even see how it's a huge problem to do that.