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Posted: 3/8/2006 12:39:58 PM EDT
Had an interesting debate with my aunt earlier this week (definitely not in our camp, but I still love her dearly). What it came down to was two things we didn't really have a good answer to:

1) How does a government--one that's of / by / for the people--effectively prevent people who shouldn't have access to firearms from obtaining them, without infringing on the rights of everyone else? Registration, background checks, 'firearms licenses', are all things that don't sit well with us. If those aren't appropriate or acceptable, what methods and measures would be proper to prevent violent criminals and people with mental health problems from getting weapons they shouldn't have? Should people with mental health conditions who've been treated or recovered have an appeals and rights-restoration process?

2) We have the right to bear arms, for ourselves and for the common militia. What my aunt and I couldn't settle on was how big a militia we're talking about. When the Founding Fathers wrote the 2nd Amendment, the cutting edge in weapons of warfare were smoothbore black powder muskets, muzzle-loading cannons, and naval frigates. I don't think they took GPS-guided bombs, F-22s, 105mm howitzers, M1 Abrahms, shoulder-fired SAMs, and thermonuclear weapons into consideration. But we have to.

So: where do we draw the line? Do we draw a line? I'd love to own an F-14D (if I had that kind of cash. :\ )--I'd hate to think of one in the hands of somebody who wanted to harm my country. MANPADS would be crucial to a people resisting the modern military of a corrupt government or a foreign invasion (the whole point of a militia!), but they're a terrorist's wet dream.

".5 inches if rifled" is a pretty arbitrary benchmark for what private citizens can and cannot have (without bending over for the JBTs). I can own a modern Barret, but I can't own a WWII Soviet 14.5mm PTRS, which is essentially the same type of rifle but slightly larger and single-shot? Wait, how do I keep Mr. Previously-Upstanding-But-Now-Disgruntled Citizen over there from buying one, too, and blowing away something or somebody important? Where do we make the call that something is 'big' or 'powerful' enough that it isn't appropriate anymore for private citizens to posess it, and only for the formal military force that represents those citizens? Who decides, what criteria do they use, and what recourse do we get if they make a dumb call?

-------------------

I'm most interested in the first one--what measures do we institute to keep bad guys and people with serious mental health problems from buying a gun off the shelf and doing something bad with it? Let's assume we've won--the import ban and manufacturing ban are gone, everything is transferable (or better yet, you don't have to fill out paperwork), no state-level restrictions, the works.

How do we stop a badguy from walking into a dealer and paying cash for your average Mac-10 (which is probably about $4-500 now that the bans are gone and sales are flying), then going over to his ex-girlfriend's house, wasting her and her two year old son, taking her cash, and treating himself to his new set of pimp rims?

AND--

How do we do that without infringing on the rights or privacy of a law-abiding citizen who wants a FA firearm?
Link Posted: 3/8/2006 12:46:03 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 3/8/2006 12:47:09 PM EDT by rjay]
We've sanitized punishment too much. Bring back hanging, hard labor, no parole, no second chance, long sentences, fewer appeals, quicker justice, etc and the bad guys MIGHT think twice. The majority of violent criminals have a long rap sheet and are well known to the cops. The court system keeps turning them loose to do more bad BS on society.

Until we get the borders secure and the illegal immigrant situation handled I am not for fewer restrictions on purchasing guns.

ETA: We need to be building a lot more prisons and killing the fuckers that riot in them.

rj
Link Posted: 3/8/2006 12:47:46 PM EDT
you can't stop them


When someone reveals himself to be a "bad guy" by commiting a crime, we should just put a bullet in his head. Then all of the known bad guys will not worry us.

Link Posted: 3/8/2006 12:51:43 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 3/8/2006 12:52:08 PM EDT by STG77]

Originally Posted By Rogue-Sasquatch:
How do we stop a badguy from walking into a dealer the kitchen and paying cash for grabbing your average Mac-10 kitchen knife (which is probably about $4-500 now that the bans are gone and sales are flying), (which is free) then going over to his ex-girlfriend's house, wasting her and her two year old son, taking her cash, and treating himself to his new set of pimp rims?

AND--

How do we do that without infringing on the rights or privacy of a law-abiding citizen who wants a FA firearm kitchen knife?




Simple answer is, you don't. 40 years ago in this country, you could buy guns over the counter with no paperwork. Were we better off then or now?
Link Posted: 3/8/2006 12:53:25 PM EDT
I'm leaning toward vulan mind meld to determine who shouldn't have guns. It's either that or crime prognostication as in Minority Report.
Link Posted: 3/8/2006 12:54:51 PM EDT

Originally Posted By STG77:

Originally Posted By Rogue-Sasquatch:
How do we stop a badguy from walking into a dealer the kitchen and paying cash for grabbing your average Mac-10 kitchen knife (which is probably about $4-500 now that the bans are gone and sales are flying), (which is free) then going over to his ex-girlfriend's house, wasting her and her two year old son, taking her cash, and treating himself to his new set of pimp rims?

AND--

How do we do that without infringing on the rights or privacy of a law-abiding citizen who wants a FA firearm kitchen knife?




Simple answer is, you don't. 40 years ago in this country, you could buy guns over the counter with no paperwork. Were we better off then or now?



+1

You can't control everything and maintain liberty. You can however lock criminals up forever and we'd have plenty of space and money to do that if we would stop the drug war and secure our borders.
Link Posted: 3/8/2006 12:55:59 PM EDT
Well, to figure out the answer to the first one, you first have to determine "who is a bad guy?". Did the person commit a crime? If so, have they been convicted? If convicted, did they serve their sentence and pay their debt to society? I think bottom line is, you can't tell who's a bad guy. Just becasue someone did something stupid when they were young doesn't necessarily make them a bad guy. Repeat offenders? Sure they've indicated a greater willingness to commit crimes, but that should mean they get locked up longer, not have restrictions when they're out (i.e. they shouldn't be "out" if they have a history of wanting to do bad things).

IMHO the only individuals you could possibly try to single out as truly being "bad guys" are those that are on the run from the law. The numbers of those individuals is in reality so low in comparison to the population at large that it's not worth having a system in place to weed them out of gun purchases.

As to the other parts on limitations, if you limit "private citizens" from owning some level of weaponry, then who are you entrusting to handle those items? Ultimately, even in the military, it's always people who are in control, and they are still citizens. Of course, the usual response is that the military has the structure and the training to prevent problems. Even so, it's still people in charge of all that hardware. People are the behind the decisions to do bad, not the tools (old cliche, I know), and even in the military there are some bad seeds. Given this information, is it really that much different for a "private citizen" to be in charge of heavy weaponry? My opinion is that you let the cost determine who is going to own the items. You can place restrictions on letting the technology out of the country, but otherwise, I say if you have the funds to buy an F14D, you should be able to. It's not real likely that many folks would get their hands on them just due to the cost.

Link Posted: 3/8/2006 12:56:46 PM EDT
Harsher penalties for dealers.

Illegal firearms are bought and sold, just like any illicit commodity. Made the penalty for dealing very high, and the penalty for having a illegally obtained firearm much higher as well. I beleive the penalties should be harher than drug dealing/possesion.

however... there are about a BILLION legal loopholes that make obtaining a firearm under the radar easy as pie in the US. Kit guns, and face to face transfers all but eliminate all forms of government regulation.

oh wells. I still do the optional paperwork when I do FTF just because it makes me feel better.
Link Posted: 3/8/2006 12:57:56 PM EDT
The Right to Keep and Bear Arms is an "unalienable" right. That means that it is given to men by God and no government has the right to take it away.

All men have the right to own guns. If someone chooses to use that gun to commit a crime, then stand them up against a wall and shoot them dead.

That way, the rights of other men are not trampled.

(Just for the record, you could easily get a firing squad right from the membership of AR15.com. )
Link Posted: 3/8/2006 12:58:07 PM EDT
I think that you solve the problem at a more fundamental level of the criminal justice system. The problem in our country is that liberals are too sympathetic to criminals and, more importantly, cannot grasp the concept that there is a small subset of repeat offenders who cause most of the problems. The vast majority of violent and dangerous crimes are committed by a very small subset of professional criminals, for want of a better term. This would include gangbangers, rapists, murderers, arsonists, professional thieves, and the like. These people should serve very long terms, and should not be out of prison until they are old men and are no longer a threat. In essence, they are predators upon society and should be caged in prison where we know they cannot get guns.

The other class of criminals are those who commit regulatory crimes, vice crimes, or are those who were put in extreme circumstances (like the guy who finds his wife screwing the neighbor and shoots them both). These individuals need to be punished, but they haven' really crossed the line to the point where they are predators upon society. A simple ban on their possession of firearms, with the possibility of restoration of rights after five years or so (depending on the crime) should suffice. Yes, they might still get guns anyway, but they aren't predators upon society so we really don't need to worry about them.

If you treated criminals in this manner very minor regulation of firearms would suffice. The libs don't have the stomach for this, especially if it would "disproportionately effect" a racial minority. They tend to view jail as some form of rehab, so they send everyone in there for a couple of years, regardless if your shotgun was 2 inches too short, or you raped a little girl, and then give you a second, and then third, fourth, fifth, and sixth chance. When you have people who should be in prison walking the streets you end up having to treat citizens as potential criminals. This is especially true if you hamstring the police from cracking down on the few really bad parts of town because that might offend some racial minority.
Link Posted: 3/8/2006 1:05:43 PM EDT

Originally Posted By rjay:
We've sanitized punishment too much. Bring back hanging...

We need to be building a lot more prisons and killing the fuckers that riot in them.




I'm all for the legal system playing less catch-and-release, but we also have to be careful we don't cross the line and become as bad as say, Saudi Arabia, Iran, Singapore, Sudan, et al, with overly draconian and punitive punishment.

For reference: I don't mind the death penalty, but I'd rather it be reserved for serious cases where the badguy has without a shred of doubt done something truly heinous and damning. Animals like Charles Manson, BTK and others of that depth of Hell--mutilations, torture, killing sprees, clear renunciations of their status as members of humanity.

If there is a possibility--ANY possibility--that the accused might not be guilty though, I'd rather the death penalty be set aside--just in case. The abomination of 'justice' that got dropped on the West Memphis 3 is one good example of why I'd add that exception: the investigation and trial was biased, botched, and the opposite of thorough.

Save execution for when there's absolutely no doubt you've found the monster.
Link Posted: 3/8/2006 1:11:56 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Rogue-Sasquatch:

Originally Posted By rjay:
We've sanitized punishment too much. Bring back hanging...

We need to be building a lot more prisons and killing the fuckers that riot in them.




I'm all for the legal system playing less catch-and-release, but we also have to be careful we don't cross the line and become as bad as say, Saudi Arabia, Iran, Singapore, Sudan, et al, with overly draconian and punitive punishment.



hey, now... WE don't belong in the same category as those RoP'ers. We don't cut off hands, we don't stone women to death for adultery, and we don't execute people publicly. We DO, however subscribe to the "beat and release" plan instead of the US's "catch and release" with petty criminals, something you guys seem to like, but when it's used.....
Link Posted: 3/8/2006 1:20:05 PM EDT
1. Death. Any criminals bad enough that they can't be trusted with weapons should be executed. IMHO, living as a half-citizen with only some of your civil rights is BS. In Mace's Ideal Justice System, someone convicted of, say, Armed Robbery, would get a fast, painful punishment like caning or whipping or something like that. On the second conviction, a more severe punishment. On the third, the death penalty. The courts would be restructured to move things along much faster then they do now.

IMHO, this could decimate crime in short order. According to all of the cops on these boards, almost all crime in their cities is concentrated among a relatively small number of repeat offenders. If we get rid of the War On Some Drugs and get the known criminals out of society permanently, there might be very little crime at all.

2. The Federalist Papers guidelines sound all right to me - you can get any weapon that would be issued to an individual soldier in the army. This would include all the various types of hand-held rocket launchers, anti-armor and anti-aircraft. These would of course be hideously expensive - I think a Stinger missile costs around $50k with the Army's mass production levels (anyone more knowledgeable to correct me?). Your average low-life on the street isn't going to be walking around with them. We'd have to draw the line at tanks, aircraft, heavy artillery, that sort of thing. For practical purposes, it wouldn't be very effective anyways.

If we ever do have The Revolution, it won't be a conventional fight - no matter what weapons we have, we could never stand up to a full frontal assault from a professional Army. It would have to be guerilla warfare on a large scale, with mostly man-portable weapons that you can hide in a closet, with individuals and small groups making attacks and raids here and there.

I'm not too worried about terrorist attacks with them - you can conduct worse attacks with stuff available at your average hardware store today. ANFO, homemade napalm, etc. are much more dangerous then machine guns and rocket launchers.
Link Posted: 3/8/2006 1:38:37 PM EDT
Preventing criminals from getting guns sis a farce and having laws to that effect are wrong. It is to the point that if you have a restraining order, not even a criminal record, mind you, you are stripped of your right to buy a gun legitimately. Sounds good until you realize that just about anyone can get a restraining order on someone else.

So who are badguys? Guys that have records? There are millions that just ain't been caught. Felons? What about a guy who did a non-violent crime, or broke one of the billions of STUPID gun laws already on the books and is being a ram rod. Should we brand offenders so that someone is not tricked into doing a private sale? Should we ban private sales? F*ck it, let's just ban guns altogether and remove them from society. Worked out well for Coke, Heroin, Meth, etc.

Also, if a guy commits a crime, does his time, etc, why should he forever lose his right to defend himself?

This, of course does not take into account that certain crimes should not be punished so lightly as they are now.

Link Posted: 3/8/2006 1:40:09 PM EDT
We should bring back corporal punishment... although something that doesn't scar and require hospitalization like Singapore canings...
Link Posted: 3/8/2006 1:50:44 PM EDT
It's very simple.

When someone commits a crime that warrants removing their right to own a firearm, execute them in the town square.

Problem solved.
Link Posted: 3/8/2006 1:53:27 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Old_Painless:
The Right to Keep and Bear Arms is an "unalienable" right. That means that it is given to men by God and no government has the right to take it away.

All men have the right to own guns. If someone chooses to use that gun to commit a crime, then stand them up against a wall and shoot them dead.

That way, the rights of other men are not trampled.

(Just for the record, you could easily get a firing squad right from the membership of AR15.com. )



Another post O'Truth
Link Posted: 3/8/2006 2:00:33 PM EDT
All infringements are unacceptable, and should be repealed. If someone is free to live among us, they should be free to be armed as well. Buying a gun should be no different than buying a hammer or a screwdriver. You go into a store, pay for your purchase, then leave. If you wish to carry the tool you just bought, you carry it in any comfortable manner you wish.
Nobody knows who you are when you buy it, and it's nobody's business whether or not you carry your property around with you.
Link Posted: 3/8/2006 2:03:41 PM EDT
shall not be unfringed....


if someone is not in prison, then they still have the right.
Link Posted: 3/8/2006 2:16:30 PM EDT
What you and your aunt don't seem to understand is that "bad guys" don't go buy guns at the gun store. They steal them, or buy stolen ones off the black market. Bad guys can ALWAYS get guns.

Does your aunt think that felons go try and buy a gun at the gun store and when their background check gets them a declined purchase they just give up and go home? Does she think they just say "oh, well, I'm a felon and I can't own a gun so I guess I just won't go rob that store."

The idea that we can somehow legislate some guarantee of safety is one of the fundamental problems with America. If criminals observed laws, they wouldn't be called criminals. Does it really make a difference to your aunt if she gets stabbed to death, shot to death or beat to death with a rock? Dead is dead. In limiting the individual right to own ams, one limits their own ability to defend themself.

The way your aunt can make society a safer place is by going out, buying a gun and learning how to use it. Then she can make a committment to her own safety and the safety of those good people around her.

Either that or she can do her best to try and support those who would legislate us all into an iron cage where we're safe from everyone and everything but ourselves. Safety is not the issue, lifestyle is the issue. The problem with question number one is that just by virtue of taking the question seriously and believing that there is an answer to it, you've abandoned all the American virtues that made this country great.

You want to make America safe with laws? Here's a good law. All instruments are benign until they are in a human hand. I can't think of one gun, knife, tank or bomb, or even a rock, that ever hurt somebody without a human hand to guide it. Cut off everybodies hands and we can all be safe. It's a small price to pay for that safety guarantee, right?

America isn't about being safe, it's about being FREE!

Does your aunt want to live in the land of the free and the home of the brave or The land of the safe and home of the enslaved?

Guess what else? You can tell her this all you want, the bottom line is it won't matter to her because in displaying the utter lack of logic she displayed by asking the question she's already proved she doesn't live in that happy little place I like to call "reality."


As far as our founding fathers not imagining anything outside of smooth bore black powder rifles, guess what, they didn't imagine televisions or computers either. So does your freedom of speech and press not apply to those mediums either?


If Americans continue to cower to "bad guys" and attempt to structure society around them we're going to end up neither safe or free.


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