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Patticus

Gun Crime in the USA ~ Shootings and Killings

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Ah yes, I found out about that as well. Fortunately the number of deaths was incredibly low; it's not often we get that silver lining in tragedies like this.

 

I am definitely interested in finding out where the gun came from as well. On that note, I would like a law that has parents who don't lock up their firearms responsible for any crimes committed by their child with the gun. Seems crazy, but remember that until a child turns 18 and magically become self-aware when the clock strikes midnight, parents are responsible for their children in all effects. You sign contracts in their name, why not go to prison in their name too?

===

To break with the liberal consensus that I normally side with, I'm going to argue for the other side of the debate here.

It appears that guns actually have something of a Laffer curve going on. To an extent, increasing availability will increase crime, as many statistics clearly say.

However, what isn't touched upon is that as gun ownership reaches very high percentages, crime rates tend to drop. And it's not just rural conservative towns that report this, either. Switzerland has many guns in circulation due to its unique defense policy, and yet has one of the lowest homicide rates in the world. While its ownership rate is lower than the US, it's still fairly high, with about one-third of homes having firearms compared to America's one-half.

 

I'm inclined to think, and I know this will be radical, the problem isn't the availability of the guns, but the fact a lot of people do not buy one. Of course, resolving the issue of crime is a considerable legal battle; the Constitution says citizens should be able to bear arms, and as with voting and speech, there's an implied right in the Second Amendment. This implied right is the right NOT to own a gun, which is often brought up in lawsuits against towns that mandate gun ownership.

 

With regards to Switzerland in particular, I also think it may be culture, as well. Swiss citizens are required to undergo militia training for many years, which likely builds considerable discipline, not to mention knowledge of firearm safety. America, by contrast, is pretty lacking in gun responsibility; whereas in Switzerland ownership and usage of a firearm is a patriotic duty, in the United States it's glorified as an aspect of "freedom." The amount of deaths and injuries caused by violation of basic firearm rules (don't point it at yourself, always lock it up when not in use, etc.) in the US, as memory serves, is fairly staggering.

 

Overall, I think resolving America's gun crime problems is a lot more complex than simply restricting access. What makes it worse is that our body of constitutional rights inherently makes one solution (compulsory ownership barring opt outs) illegal. Though even with widespread, responsible firearm ownership, that would do nothing about the root causes of much violent crime: poverty, poor education, and draconian laws against what substances you can put in your body.

Edited by Ogil.exe Maurice

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It's hilarious that Columbine and Virginia Tech are infamous for shooting, yet as of now shootings - while still sudden and tragic - have become so much more mundane.

 

I guess they've just become so common (or at least, reported) we don't really think about it anymore...

 

Fortunately they've also become a lot less lethal per incident if I'm not mistaken.

 

What scares me the most is practically none of the shooters have anything in common with each other besides deciding they want to suddenly slaughter everyone in their school. There is no universal shooter profile; we really can't do anything BESIDES focus on the guns themselves.

Edited by Ogil.exe Maurice

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Overall, I think resolving America's gun crime problems is a lot more complex than simply restricting access. What makes it worse is that our body of constitutional rights inherently makes one solution (compulsory ownership barring opt outs) illegal. Though even with widespread, responsible firearm ownership, that would do nothing about the root causes of much violent crime: poverty, poor education, and draconian laws against what substances you can put in your body.

I really do not think this is a factor here. When people shoot up schools, it isn't because the government said they weren't allowed to snort cocaine.

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I really do not think this is a factor here. When people shoot up schools, it isn't because the government said they weren't allowed to snort cocaine.

 

The context has that being related to violent crime in general, not just school crimes. :P Criminalisation of drugs by definition leads to more crime, as well as associated crimes (i.e. you need to murder a snitch to avoid prison or a fine). The people who are imprisoned for minor offenses will also find legal employment difficult, thus encouraging them to commit more crimes to get by. More crime logically leads to more gun crime, given the simple fact you're a lot more effective at such activities with a firearm.

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The context has that being related to violent crime in general, not just school crimes. tongue.png Criminalisation of drugs by definition leads to more crime, as well as associated crimes (i.e. you need to murder a snitch to avoid prison or a fine). The people who are imprisoned for minor offenses will also find legal employment difficult, thus encouraging them to commit more crimes to get by. More crime logically leads to more gun crime, given the simple fact you're a lot more effective at such activities with a firearm.

It amazing how all this stuff is connected, and that the one thing to stop this cycle is to not be so harsh over these drugs but they won't do it.

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It amazing how all this stuff is connected, and that the one thing to stop this cycle is to not be so harsh over these drugs but they won't do it.

The downfall of a democratic government is they don't do what's logical, but what's most popular.

"Hard on crime" approaches to justice are a lot simpler to digest (and thus more popular) than a longwinded discussion about the merits of legalising drugs and shifting the focus of law away from punishment and towards prevention. Never mind that the moment you discuss changing course you're talked of as "going soft" (abolishing the death penalty) or otherwise contributing to society's decay ("More drugs will lead to more drug use omg!").

So we kind of find ourselves handcuffed electorally as well as legally. We can't mandate gun ownership to help root out crime because that violates the Constitution, and trying to improve social services and reducing the number of things you can go to jail for runs into innumerable political issues. It's a very sticky situation, that isn't helped at all by the strong divisions in American government at present.

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I don't think legalizing drugs would stop gun crime much. If people were addicted to the hard stuff they would still rob people to pay for the prescription when they can't always afford it or rob the pharmacy if they got really desperate for a fix.

 

I imagine that prescriptions in America aren't exactly cheap so in many ways your pharmacy would become your new dealer.

 

In many ways legalized drugs would be very beneficial to the US health care system and the pharmaceutical companies but not to the people.

 

Drugs would simply get capitalized and exploited like everything else.

 

Also the CIA are pretty much a legalized drug cartel.

 

So I don't see all drugs being legalized at least not in vision some people hope it will.

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Gun deaths have many factors, BW; economic (poverty driving people to: steal to live, join gangs etc), the war on drugs (gotta steal stuff to get enough moolah for that next fix, or I could just kill that stupid dealer and take his stash!), mental health (depression-related suicides, straight-up lunatics with guns, regular folks with anger management problems, mental healthcare not being affordable), basic cultural attitudes toward firearms ("If the criminals have that gun, I should be able to have it too"), as well basic stupidity ("I'm just gonna look in this barrel here and take the safety off, or hey, I'll give it to my kid..."), you get the idea.

However, if we are to better understand the root causes of gun crime and how to fix them, if we are to come up with solid governmental policies that stand a chance of helping do away with these crimes, then a lot more scientific research is required, and I dare say a lot of publicity for said research's findings is also a must if it is to combat the decades of propaganda put out by the gun lobby.

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Please don't jump on me for commenting in another of these topics.

 

 

Well, when it comes to guns, honestly, a lot of these cases I don't see as the gun's fault as people try and throw the blame at right away. In many of these shootings, these people have mental problems that were likely the cause of things like that. These people or the parents of kids and such should not even be allowed to have guns around if their kids may have problems like this. Also, unless you know your kids are stable, you should keep them secured or hidden and tell and explain to your kids about how dangerous they are. There are rifles and shotguns sitting around my house as I've grown up, but I've never had any interest in them. I always knew what they could do though, as I have fired them once or twice, but it was rarely fun, because I didn't like the kick that much when younger.

 

The big thing in my mind is that it is never the gun's fault and blame shouldn't be pointed at the gun. When it comes to kid, the blame goes to the parents. Yes, OMG, I''m blaming the real cause of something. So many people know  that the problem with kids and such in many topics besides guns, such as the violent video game topics and other things like that, is that it is the parents fault. It is not the guns fault. It is not the video games fault. It is the parent's fault for not doing what they should be doing in the first place.

 

I often see nothing wrong with guns, as long as they are used and kept responsibly. Whenever I hear the things of, let's go collect the guns, all I see in my mind is a blood bath usually. Yeah, I'd like to see people coming to someone coming to people's doors saying, *knock knock* Give us all your guns! Yeah, I would predict lots of violence and such there. Just taking guns away or saying people can't buy them and such isn't the answer. Responsible owners don't do these horrible acts.

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Every gun owner is a responsible gun owner until someone ends up mutilated or dead.

 

The problem with having a gun discussion where we can't talk about the role of guns whatsoever is primarily the ironic fact that people seem to ignore their highly adept ability at killing things. Yes, people who go on shooting sprees are usually maniacs, and we should treat maniacs before they go on shooting sprees; and in doing so, this should theoretically lower the amount of shooting sprees we have. But we will never be able to treat all maniacs, thus it serves to reason that along with treating maniacs we should lessen the ability for the maniacs that slip through the cracks to kill things-- we can walk and chew bubble gum at the same time. And yes, I know: knives and bats are lethal. No, knives and bats are not as lethal as guns. If I were given the choice between living in a country full of knife-wielding maniacs like the UK and a country of gun-wielding maniacs like the US, just by sheer statistics alone, I'm going for the UK. Does this mean we go door-to-door and take everyone's guns? No, because that's impossible and stupid (I don't particularly care about the legality of it based on the Constitution; appeals to authority. Big whoop- it has an amendment process for a reason. Shit's not perfect). But for Pete's sake, this utopian ideal that we live in a world where you can, or worse, should be able dump millions of guns in a country and not see a rise in gun crime is something I cannot empathize with.

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If people were addicted to the hard stuff they would still rob people to pay for the prescription when they can't always afford it or rob the pharmacy if they got really desperate for a fix.

Practically every country that has softened its drug laws reports positive results. Drugs, now being regulated, become safer to consume. Drug needles, no longer obtained illicitly, are cleaner, thus causing HIV rates to plummet. Organised crime also decreases due to the sheer amount of volume of revenue they lose.

The record is clear: prohibition does not work, and the only people it benefits are law enforcement and paternalists. The only reason many drugs are prohibited is because many decades ago, fundamentalist Christians got together with some powerful lobbyists (such as the textile industry) to ban them. Of course a lot of drugs are dangerous; that's the price of not going through government regulatory agencies first.

 

^ Wasn't recreational use of marijuana legalized in Washington and Colorado last year though?

 

Indeed.

And it's already pretty much legal in a lot of states; many California cops, for instance, don't bother enforcing personal use laws with marijuana anymore. Many "medical" licenses have turned into small businesses as a result.

Let's just face it, Prohibition has never done anything besides feed the pockets of organised crime. Where there's demand, there will be supply, and if businesses don't provide the supply, criminals will. The police are just not prepared to actually control something on such a massive scale.

 

However, if we are to better understand the root causes of gun crime and how to fix them, if we are to come up with solid governmental policies that stand a chance of helping do away with these crimes, then a lot more scientific research is required, and I dare say a lot of publicity for said research's findings is also a must if it is to combat the decades of propaganda put out by the gun lobby.

 

It really is unfortunate the gun lobby tends to align itself with the conservative elements of society. Simply reducing the number of people in poverty via a more robust education and transfer payments system would go a massive way towards reducing crime and by extension, pressure to take away guns.

Of course, what remains enigmatic will always be school shootings. Whereas we can identify plenty of trends that correlate with gun crime in broader society, there is no single shooter profile for school shootings. While there's always the possibility of arming teachers, how do we make sure the teachers aren't ready to snap themselves, or that they keep the firearm secured in a way no student could get it (and thus quite possibly render it useless in the event of a shooter situation)?

It's unfortunate home schooling isn't viable on a large scale. It by definition evaporates school shootings and also generally produces better results than public education.

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Oh good, this thread still is around. Now I don't need to create a topic every time there's another pointless loss of life.

 

http://news.yahoo.com/police-girl-9-dead-3-hurt-north-carolina-041702989.html#

 

And yet another one, when it's only been a few weeks since the reporters were murdered on TV.

 

Several shootings in Charlotte today. 5 people have been killed so far, including a 7-year old boy at a birthday party.

 

Thus far, there isn't any connection, but it is a considerable spike in violence that has local authorities worried.

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http://news.yahoo.com/shooting-umpqua-community-college-oregon-182211198.html

 

Another tragedy today. 10 were killed, including the shooter. Earlier fatalities were reported at 13, so this might  change.

 

10 people are confirmed injured thus far.

 

Based on one report, the main motive of the killings looks to be militant irreligious in nature:

 

d982a6c2-26b8-4507-8e5d-6ba344b280b9.jpg

 

There's skepticism, but more and more sources are stating it:

 

http://www.truthrevolt.org/news/reports-ucc-shooter-asked-victims-their-religion-then-killed-christians

Edited by Wendigogilvie

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Obama looks like he's at the end of his tether at this point, he's as angry and baffled as the rest of us at the idiotic inaction on this emotive subject.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cLCusJEvPu

How about some movement on repealing Citizens United and enacting election reforms? At least then we'd be on the way to loosening the NRA's choke-hold on American politics.

Edited by Patticus

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Man I go to UO, and hearing about this scared the shit out of me and a couple friends. just the thought of people my age , my friends, acquaintances, etc. getting killed like this never settled well with me. And because of their faith no less. How many times does this need to happen before things can get better?

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A lot of the comments on Youtube are going on about how it's all a hoax to bring in more gun control measures, which is why the like/dislike ratio is so balanced.

...I knew there were disgusting uncaring sods on Youtube, but so many in one place?

I'm convinced it's these uncaring sods that are the reason why we will never have proper gun control laws in America. Any time gun control is brought up, they act like a child whose parent has just threatendd to tale their toys away.

That's what it looks like to me, at least.

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I dont know much about American politics but I do noticed there is alot of shootings going on. Where I am from we dont have much shootings like this and you dont hear much about killings because while they happen they dont happen alot.  They do have tighter rules on weapons (but when I wouldnt be caught dead with a gun).

I don't understand why America can't follow other countries in weapons control? Your not taking your guns away from good people however we don't need so many and they shouldn't be so easy to get. I saw this documentary once and it have the filmmaker going into a bank and he had to open an account to get a free gun. Scary.

Anyways I feel that guns are a problem in this country and they should be resitricted to the military and police man or hunters (some hunters).

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Honestly, there's a lot I wanna say, but I probably shouldn't dwell on the actions of the gunner too much. I just will never fathom how people can do these things and not feel.

 

and jeez, I'm shocked and not shocked at how many shootings there have been.

Edited by Michael Munroe

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