The Connecticut Effect

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Respectfully submitted by Lawrence E. Rafferty (rafflaw)-Guest Blogger

In the weeks since the school shooting in Newtown, Connecticut, the call for more action in controlling military style guns and large capacity magazines has increased, but as of yet, nothing concrete has been done on the national level.  In fact, the NRA was recently quoted as suggesting that nothing will be done, once the country gets over the “Connecticut Effect”!  “The National Rifle Association will wait until the “Connecticut effect” has subsided to resume its push to weaken the nation’s gun laws, according to a top NRA lobbyist speaking at the NRA’s Wisconsin State Convention this weekend.” Think Progress 

I did not realize that anyone ever could “get over” the shameful massacre of 20 small children along with 6 staff members of the school they attended.  Is this kind of statement from the NRA just hubris or is it indicative of a disgusting level of ambivalence to the violence wrought upon citizens when semi-automatic guns and large capacity magazines are allowed and allowed in the wrong hands?  I know we have discussed the gun control issue many times here, but when I read statements like the one quoted above from a Wisconsin NRA official, my head explodes.

The Think Progress article linked above also discussed further statements made by Wisconsin Lobbyist, Bob Welch, that indicate that he has little or no concern over the violence of that sad day in Newtown, but rather is sad that there has been a delay in the progress of the NRA’s agenda since the Newtown shootings.  “Welch went on to bemoan the fact that the public’s focus on Newtown was preventing the NRA from pushing such bills through the legislature, but his remarks soon turned to braggadocio about the NRA’s legislative influence. He relayed an anecdote about how, following the Connecticut shooting, a pro-gun Democrat in the legislature had mentioned his desire to close the gun show loophole. “And I said [to him], ‘no, we’re not going to do that,” Welch boasted. “And so far, nothing’s happened on that.”

WELCH: We have a strong agenda coming up for next year, but of course a lot of that’s going to be delayed as the “Connecticut effect” has to go through the process. […] What’s even more telling is the people who don’t like guns pretty much realize that they can’t do a thing unless they talk to us. After Connecticut I had one of the leading Democrats in the legislature—he was with us most of the time, not all the time—he came to me and said, “Bob, I got all these people in my caucus that really want to ban guns and do all this bad stuff, we gotta give them something. How about we close this gun show loophole? Wouldn’t that be good?” And I said, “no, we’re not going to do that.” And so far, nothing’s happened on that.”
Think Progress

I was glad to read that the NRA’s massive amounts of money donated to politicians may not have as large an impact on the election process that they claim.  “The answer is no, because once again, though the NRA may spend a good deal of money in total, it spreads that money to multiple races across the country. In the last four elections, the median NRA House independent expenditure has spent less than $10,000, and the median Senate IE only around $30,000 – numbers too small to have a real impact.

All right, but is the organization spending token amounts on a large group of friendly candidates, but putting its real weight behind a few high-profile races and producing results? Yet again, the answer is no. In the last four elections, the NRA spent over $100,000 on an IE in 22 separate Senate races. The group’s favored candidate won 10 times, and lost 12 times. This mediocre won-lost record, however, tells only part of the story. Let’s take one example, the largest IE the NRA conducted over this period. In 2010, they spent $1.5 million on the 2010 Pennsylvania Senate race between Republican Pat Toomey and Democrat Joe Sestak. Toomey won by 2 points, but could the NRA claim credit? Toomey’s campaign spent just under $17 million, over twice as much as Sestak’s $7.5 million. The NRA was one of a remarkable 62 outside groups that poured a total of over $28 million into the Pennsylvania race. Put another way, in the NRA’s single largest independent expenditure over this period, the group accounted for less than 3 percent of the money spent in the race.” Think Progress Justice

Maybe the NRA is spinning its wheels because the Newtown shootings finally tipped the scales of public opinion in favor of sane and reasonable gun control measures.  I, for one, would hope that is the case.  In light of the vast amounts of weapons being purchased since the shootings, and the continued violence, I am not so sure. The latest totals that I have seen show that at least 1822 people have died due to gun violence since the Newtown shootings in December of 2012!  Reader Supported News

Does the NRA really have a significant influence on the political process?  Will the Newtown shootings force Washington to do something about the gun violence in this country?  What do you think?  What do you think should be done?

159 thoughts on “The Connecticut Effect

  1. Larry,

    How sad is it that these people view the deaths as a “mere effect” that hurts their agenda. This has all the traces of sociopathy.

  2. Why don’t we hear anything about the drugs that have been given those who have committed the mass murders? I wonder how much the pharmaceutical lobby is paying to keep the focus off their side of the street?

    With the government capturing all our internet and phone messages, the greatly expanded use of drones, a Presidential kill list, the burning alive of someone not even indicted of a crime….. basically, the only thing left of the Bill of Rights is the 2nd amendment. That’s scary.

  3. Interersting! I was watching Lou Dobbs (he was more bipartisan when he was with CNN), and he stated that since the Sandy Hook tragedy, there has been more than 500 people murdered due to gun violence.

    I am confused. I don’t have any ‘workable’ solutions to end gun violence. There are more than 300 million guns on the “streets'(Lou Dobbs Show, referenced). How do you create legislation for these guns or gun owners without violating certain laws or their rights?

    In my opinion, I don’t think the Elites care; (as long as the guns aren’t aimed toward them or their families).

  4. RWL,
    The Supreme Court already approved reasonable restrictions on the Second Amendment.
    nick,
    Here is a quote from a Think Progress article that responds to your statement: “Moreover, when you compare different states with different gun laws at the same time, you find states with tighter gun regulations (including assault weapon bans) have significantly lower rates of firearm death. This suggests that, independent of whatever good fortune the United States has seen the past decade, better gun laws could significantly accelerate decline in lives lost to gunfire.” http://thinkprogress.org/gun-debate-guide/
    Furthermore Nick, the murders would likely to be even greater in Chicago if more weapons were allowed into the city. Take a look at the murder by firearm rates by state and you will see that Illinois, including Chicago, is not at the top of the list.

  5. RWL –

    I agree that most “elites don’t care”…which I assume you mean to be saying that they don’t care about disarming Americans. PROVIDED that enough loopholes are left so that THEY and their security guards will still be able to own guns. The rich – and the government, in my opinion, do not want the 47% to be able to own guns.

    Like most other people that know something about major events of the past 50 years – and have studied the recent Sandy Hook incident, I am about 98% convinced it was a hoax, complete with PAID professional actors.

    No doubt there’s one or more people who that will say they personally knew one of the victims, or someone who knew one or more of them.

    Yes, and Ted Olson’s wife is named Lady Booth, but on 9/11, her name was Barbara Olson.

  6. http://www.thedailybeast.com/articles/2013/02/15/obama-and-bloomberg-together-may-unarm-the-nra.html Looks like Bloomberg’s PAC is stepping up to fight the NRA ‘s PAC money. Previously, those that were for gun restrictions were outspent by wealthy NRA donors and gun manufacturers. The pro NRA candidate is now behind in the primary to replace Jesse Jackson Jr due to Bloomberg’s help. Bloomberg is putting his money to work for a worthwhile cause.

  7. “Bloomberg is putting his money to work for a worthwhile cause.”

    In your opinion. Overturning the 2nd Amendment might well lead to banning
    all kinds of things. How would you like it if a wealthy Baptist decided that alcohol causes more problems than guns, and so s/he starts putting their money to the worthwhile cause of alcohol prohibition. Would you also support THAT? Can you explain why or why not?

  8. Does the NRA really have a significant influence on the political process? Will the Newtown shootings force Washington to do something about the gun violence in this country? What do you think? What do you think should be done?

    The government should stop scaring the people who do not trust government.

    That would start with the demilitarization of the police forces, dismantling of Homeland Security, and decommissioning SWAT teams of for instance the department of Education:

    The Departmenheret of Education is disputing a local news report that it sent a S.W.A.T. team to knock down the door and search the house of an individual because he defaulted on student loans.

    Stockton, Calif. resident Kenneth Wright told the local ABC affiliate that on Tuesday, approximately 15 officers stormed into his home at 6 a.m., placed him in handcuffs and kept him in a squad car for nearly six hours while his three young children remained inside the house.

    Wright said one of the individuals grabbed him by the neck and led him outside to his front lawn.

    “He had his knee on my back and I had no idea why they were there,” Wright said.

    The initial report said the U.S. Department of Education “issued the search and called in the S.W.A.T for his wife’s defaulted student loans,” although that story has since been taken down and replaced with an updated version that did not contain the claim about the raid being connected to student loans.

    (DOE Swat Team). Leadership in this instance would be concerned that the burst of gun sales once the government started talking gun laws recently means that substantial numbers of folks do not trust the government.

    That is the fault of government, not the people who are afraid of the government.

    The government is the number one weapons peddler on Earth by a big margin, killing people around the world every day, and they want the people to stand down.

    Crazy, like the NRA.

  9. Dredd,
    I agree with the goal of demilitarizing the police forces. However, the semi-automatic weapons and large capacity magazines gives them an argument why they need some of the hardware.

  10. rafflaw:

    Don’t know who demilitarizes first, but take NY State – cops are currently equipped with military weapons (including machine guns which are not allowed for any civilian and grenades). Civilians are now restricted to 7 round mags. Do you really think that the cops will ever give up their military weapons?

    There is a demonization of law abiding civilians who want weapons (aside from an outright banning of their favorite weapons), and a complete pass on the militarization of police forces.

    Like to see a little balance in your column; not being personal, but until I see balance in your argument, you do not have much credibility.

  11. We have a “War on Terror” and a “War on Drugs”, together spending 100s of $ Billions/year and kill tens of thousands. And now we have this tragedy where 20 kids are killed by a crazy man and the answer to fix this is take guns away from law abiding citizens. Yea, makes sense to me, NOT.

    The purpose of the “War on Terror” is to scare you, not wage war on a perceived threat. You should be very afraid that some foreigner with an AK47 in the desert half way around the world is such a threat to you and your family that you need to relinquish your 2nd amendment rights so the government is more secure in securing your safety. Right, and I have a bridge that I will gladly sell you that connect NY with London.

    People don’t trust our government, that is why they are buying record amounts of guns and ammunition. The answer to this is not more laws to further restrict our freedom, rather the answer should be to regain our trust. Something I fear our “leaders” know nothing about.

  12. Is it just me, or does it seem as though every time someone posts a piece discussing some sane solutions to reducing gun violence the initial response is a reasoned discussion, but soon (very soon) commenters start pouring in who are doing the arm-flapping and scary-government screed? They’re all parroting the same talking points. And I’m inclined to suspect a few on the NRA payroll are spending vast amounts of time monitoring centrist and progressive websites and jumping in on every discussion. Watch this space. Watch for vehement retorts in 3-2-1……

  13. Steve and Paul —

    If you two don’t soon stop making sense, the resident free speech customers are going to start calling you crazy conspiracy theorists
    and anti-Dentites. Did either of you get your ideas from MSNBC
    or HuffPo? No? How about the NYT? Then they MUST have come
    from some anti-semetic loonytunes that most people here don’t follow, and that means your ideas must be cuckoo.

  14. I have one major concern. That is the demagoguery on both sides of the argument. The “fix” for violent crime is to focus on the cosmetics of a specific type of firearm according to some.

    There is no material difference between a hunting rifle and a so-called assault rifle. Neither of them are submachine guns. Only one round is fired by each pull of the trigger. As for large capacity magazines, they are about as useful as hip pockets on a hog. They are prone to jamming and are hard to change out when empty. And BTW, are used in less than .003% of gun crimes. The war on assault rifles is as empty as the war on terror and war on drugs.

    Automatic submachine guns have been illegal for public use since 1934. A true assault rifle is a submachine gun, and has a “select fire” switch. It can be changed from fully automatic to semi-automatic with a flip of a small lever.

    If we are serious about reducing gun crime, let us get serious about reducing the number of drug crimes. I do not care one whit if somebody wants to smoke weed. It is less dangerous than alcohol. And there are more alcohol related deaths than by firearm in the US, if we include the number of people who die of liver failure and Korsakoff’s dementia. That is in addition to the number who die in ETOH related accidents, not to mention the number of drunks who use guns to shoot people in an alcoholic rage.

    Mental health care in the US is a joke. I have written on this topic before. If I did not have to get a report out for a lawyer tomorrow, I would write a long piece about the broken mental health system. If the amount of money proposed for law enforcement that will not work were spent on mental health, it would go a lot further in solving the problem of violence in our society.

    As for understanding “assault rifles” versus ordinary hunting rifles, take ten minutes of your life to watch this brief video:

  15. I want to speak to the issue of large capacity magazines for a moment. The large capacity magazine has a spring at the bottom to push the rounds upward so they can be loaded into the chamber. In a big magazine it requires a very strong spring. Cartridges are heavy, thus the stronger spring. There is talk of limiting magazine capacity to ten rounds. Let’s take a look at the effect “restriction” on magazine size will have in the real world.

    The little video below is Army Cpl. Travis Tomasie demonstrating changing magazines in a standard issue pistol. Anyone can do this with practice.

    Here is Cpl. Tomasie giving a lesson on an Army firing range. He is an instructor.

  16. OS, There is demagoguery on both sides of this issue. The LA Times has 2 entire sections of today’s[Sunday] paper on gun violence. It covers not only guns but culture..including Hollywood and video culture. The most interesting piece to me was about a very liberal author named Dan Baum. He has had guns all his life. He carries a concealed weapon and makes a very unemotional, reasoned case for it. What makes me think of you is Baum talks about how he felt for a long time like a closeted gay being among friends who would use homophobic slurs. Baum has come out of the “gun closet” w/ all his liberal friends. OS, you have the knowledge and moral authority on this while most folks here talk out of their asses regarding guns. I just know this is a complex issue and pols on both sides are playing fear. When a pol plays the fear card they’re @ their worse.

  17. I just glanced over my previous comment and realized I did not complete my thought and what I said may not make sense to some. (Really, I do have to get to work. Billable time and all that).

    The strong spring in a large capacity magazine is often so strong, it overwhelms the receiver. It can have the same effect as trying to force the wrong key into a lock. The precision mechanism jams. Jams in automatic weapons have been a problem since the things were invented. More than one pilot was shot down during WW-I because the Lewis machine gun drum jammed. At least they put a bunch of guns on WW-II fighter planes, and if one jammed, they had anywhere from three to seven more.

    Large capacity magazines still jam, and soldiers are still being killed when their assault rifles jam during a firefight.

  18. bill mcwilliams:

    Had a hard time following your screed, but one question. How do you make the leap to calling us anti-Semites?

    By the way, if you are going to call names, try to spell the insult correctly.

  19. nick,
    When politicians on both sides of any issue play on fear, it puts us all at risk. The fear card gave us the “war on drugs” and the Patriot Act. The agendas are different on the gun issue, but when fear is played against fear, the outcome is the same. The public loses in favor of band aid “feel good” solutions.

  20. Bill

    Steve and Paul make perfect sense you dont seem to want to listen. The issue is whether gun control will reduce gun deaths and the answer is no.
    Nothing you can legislate will stop criminals from committing crimes.

  21. Amendment II [ Annotations ]
    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.

    It is a concise little statement. The Framers had thoughts that were well considered and grounded in experience that The People need to have the means to fight off bad governments, kings, tyrrants, Indians, pirates, and invaders. Their first consideration had to have been how to fight against one’s own government such as the Kraut King. The phrase “security of a free state” would be nicer if the Framers had underlined the word “free”.
    Now the word “people” can not be parsed. It is you and me, not just people who are in a state militia. They did not limit itto sidearms. I suppose if the Gatling Gun had been invented that they might have gone wider on the range of weapons that The People can keep in their possession or “bear”. If I want to “bear” arms does that not mean the right to carry my gun on my person in public?

    To fight off either King or Queen or the Koch Brothers we The People will need to be up to speed with Queeny and Cokeheads. If they have assault rifles in their army then we need them in our homes, in our man caves, in our cars. So that we can gather together as a militia and kill the tyrrants.

    The one thing I would do though if I was to get a chance of revision of the Second Amendment would be to limit the right of kids, first name Adam, to have weapons. These days a kid is anyone under age 30. Ok, that was a joke.

    Missouri has a recent Constitutional Amendment passed by the Initiative process which allows a person under 18 to get a concealed carry
    permit from the state and a person over age 18 to carry concealed without a permit and allows stores and other facilities to opt out of allowing them inside. Had Adam gone into a school in Missouri it might have been possible for someone nearby to get a whiff of it and come in and gun him down.

    I am tired of guys like Piers Morgan on CNN ranting about the number of gun murders each year in America. Go back to Birmingham. We had good reason to throw off the yoke of the English King and could not have done it with bows and arrows. Dogs ought to be able to carry.

  22. steve f,

    I think it’s YOU that’s struggling with following what I wrote. I didn’t say you are anti-semitic, I said that some people here who disagree with you might start calling you names like conspiracy theorists and anti-semites.

    Next time, slow down and don’t be so quick on the disagreeable trigger.

    Sorry for assuming you would “get” the Seinfeld reference.

    BTW, I enjoyed your screed. What does that word mean to you?

  23. This dog dont need no “auto complete”. Why does that little squib keep showing up at the bottom of the page on this DogolgueMachine?

  24. bill mcwilliams,
    “Like most other people that know something about major events of the past 50 years – and have studied the recent Sandy Hook incident, I am about 98% convinced it was a hoax, complete with PAID professional actors.”

    Thanks for your input. What a vicious, inhuman thing to say. You must be very proud.
    You are therefore 98% certifiably insane.
    Please stick to your previous holocaust-denial comments.

    OS,
    “The strong spring in a large capacity magazine is often so strong, it overwhelms the receiver. It can have the same effect as trying to force the wrong key into a lock. The precision mechanism jams. Jams in automatic weapons have been a problem since the things were invented.”

    Good! Then you won’t mind if the damned murderous devices are banned, will you?
    Diverting the topic to ridiculous assault rifle/assault weapon gun terminology is a tactic favored by the NRA. Nice to see you using it.

    Steve Fleischer,
    I realize that it’s difficult for those who have a gun power fetish to read a perspective on mass firearm carnage from an actual reasoning person, but please have patience. Rafflaw did an excellent job on this article.

  25. Bob,

    You obviously haven’t studied the facts and don’t even know why more and more people are coming to realize that uninformed, arrogant fools such as Bob Kauten are part of the problem.

    Read this, or get someone to read it to you, then, if you think you can refute it, I’ll be glad to admit that I’m wrong. But, insults and/or links to Gov’t or MSM propaganda which merely sing the official version of the same song you sing WILL not suffice. Sorry Bob, only a substantive rebuttal of the evidence and argument adduced will be considered.

    Otherwise, go back to sleep and STFU.

  26. People such as Bob Kauten are part of your problem, bill.

    I’m rather surprised that you’re allowed access to a computer for this long, during the day. Did the orderly lose track of you, again?

    I sympathize. I imagine your hiding under the bed all day gets a little boring. It livens your pathetic existence, to make up exciting conspiracy stories, all of which require the collusion of millions of your enemies.

    Really, everyone but you is conspiring against you, aren’t they? How exciting!

  27. Rafflaw & bill mcwilliams,

    I was making a point of how to end the gun violence. Bill O’Reilly had made an interesting comment on how to help curb the gun violence by stating: “Anyone who uses or obtain a gun illegally has violated a federal law, punishable with a mandatory 5-10 years in prison.” Then, I thought that this wasn’t a good idea, due to the fact that we have the death penalty for certain crimes, and so far, the death penalty hasn’t worked (as far as crime prevention purposes).

    A professor, on the Morning Joe show, stated that neither party is not even attempting to slow the manufacturing of these weapons/guns: “If they truly wanted to stop the manufacturing of these weapons, then why not have a 15%-20% sales tax on all guns, big and small.”

    Think about this: Remember the billion-dollar settlement with the Tobacco companies, private parties, and the states? Although the price of cigarettes have risen, new warning labels and name changes have been utilized, and creepy commercials have increased, there really hasn’t been a law preventing the sale or stopping people from purchasing cigarettes. Hence, are cigarettes the real concern or the people who purchase them? Are guns the real concern or should we being focusing on the people who purchase them?

    This new law: Universal background checks is not going to stop Tyrone, Billy Bob, & Juan from doing a drive-by shooting on a 15 year old girl waiting for a bus in Chicago; it is not going to stop them from going inside an office building, and shooting their supervisor for laying them off in Florida; and it is definitely not going to stop them from going into some of our public and private schools.

    Is focusing on the mental health or emotional well being of our citizens for prevention purposes the road we should travel?

    Call me conspiracy theorists if you like, but I can only make this next assertion based on my previous work experience:

    I used to work in Missouri’s Department of Probation and Parole, and I had to visit ‘offenders’ in jail, go to court with them, and have a warrant issued out for them for violating their terms of their parole or probation. Most (98%) of the offenders had commonalities: same employment status, someone was always posting their bail or bond; someone was paying to have a roof over their head (and I am not talking about a homeless shelter), feeding, clothing, and even providing cable for them. I came to the conclusion that if I know who is committing some of these crimes, then I know our federal government knows. However, our federal government refuses to stop these murders and child molesters from committing another crime or even thinking about committing these crimes in the first place.

    Or maybe the feds (or Elites) are doing what Guy B. Adams & Danny L. Balfour (1998) stated in their book, “Unmasking Administrative Evil:”

    “A surplus population is defined as groups of people who are made to appear useless or worse, who are viewed as detrimental to the well-being of everyone else; Hence, alternative attempts to solve a common problem, one of getting rid of people whom governments perceive to be without function or otherwise undesirable.”

    Moreover, “the history of the 20th century has taught us that people who are rendered permanently superfluous are eventually condemned to segregated precincts of the living dead (what some people call ‘the projects’ or ‘the hood’) or exterminated outright.”

  28. Bob Kauten, I deal with facts, not hyperbole; e.g., “…you won’t mind if the damned murderous devices are banned, will you?
    Diverting the topic to ridiculous assault rifle/assault weapon gun terminology is a tactic favored by the NRA.”

    That is the demagoguery I was referring to. Did you get the memo that the damn things seldom work right and no self-respecting real criminal uses them? And they are used in so few crimes they hardly register on the stats? If we are going to spend money on a serious effort at reducing crime of all kinds, it might be a good idea to study the causes of crime, and not spend all our energy and money on the tools. Legislation that will not work to reduce crime, but makes some folks feel good for a while, until some crazy wipes out a classroom with some other kind of weapon or device. As for the NRA, I am not a member and think they have not had sane leadership since Bob Foss retired.

  29. RWL,
    Do not forget the profit motive of the Prison-Industrial Complex. If you expect the war on terror and war on drugs to end anytime soon, do not hold your breath. Especially the drugs. There is too much money to be made on incarcerating people to allow pot to be legalized.

  30. Another one bites the dust! Why am I not surprised that “Blowhard Bob”

    couldn’t refute or even offer an alternative to the article I cited which raises
    serious doubts that Sandy Hook was anything more than a hoax?

    Anyone want to try and rescue Bob? He is obviously ignorant of the subject, and only capable of insults. Help the bald brother out, if you think
    you can.

    Here’s the link: http://www.veteranstoday.com/2013/02/15/an-open-letter-to-fau-faculty-staff-and-administration-about-sandy-hook/

  31. People who decry every gun and gun owner are as deplorable as those who want to arm every person with a bazooka in homage to the Second Amendment. Guns, like every other potentially dangerous commodity, have a use,a place, and a need for regulation. If you doubt this try throwing all regulations off of motor vehicles in deference to your constitutional right to travel. If they do that, I’d stay off the paved roads.

    There ARE NO ABSOLUTE CONSTITUTIONAL RIGHTS — either at the state of federal level. They are premised on reasonable interpretations of the social contract and protected by our respect for law, custom,and tradition.

    No citizen not engaged in the military needs a 30 round combat clip and no rational person thinks he/she does. Let’s face it, the crowd demanding this “right” are either involved in selling firearms or convinced that they are under imminent attack from the government. There is nothing to be done about the first group except expose their little artificial turf organization for what it is. As for the second, if you really think you’re going to fight off the black helicopters with your store-bought AK-47, wake up now because you’re no match for a trained assault team.

    Every gun should be registered. Autos have to be registered yet no one suggests that the gubbament will be rounding us up and taking our cars. Likewise, just because a semi-automatic looks imposing doesn’t mean it’s an automatic as OS correctly points out. As in most affairs of state, looks don’t count; dangerousness does.

    There is a reachable common ground on this topic if we just put the extremists in “time-out” and set about the patriotic work of talking rationally about the subject.

    .

  32. Actually, Mespo, imo, only one traffic law is really needed: Reeckless or Careless Driving.

    The Constitution gives us the right to own firearms NOT merely because we
    NEED them — although some people think we most certainly do need them.

    Oh, and regarding cars – so-called safety inspections are no longer needed. They’e a regressive form of taxation that hits the poor. And, the safest drivers are those driving UNinsured vehicles. THINK about it.

  33. mespo –

    BOTH fall under Reckless or Careless driving.
    DUI shouldn’t even be illegal. Causing harm or property damage,YES.
    Driving while mad, nope. But these, and other things could perhaps be
    considered “enhanced” violations, if the driver is indeed, e.g. intoxicated .

  34. Tell that to my daughter, bill. Two of her high school classmates were recently killed by a drunk driver. Their little Mitsubishi was no match for his big Volvo. And he was going the wrong way on the four-lane highway. It was a little late for reckless driving charges. I just wish an officer had been in the area to see him weaving all over the road before he killed two young women.

  35. Bill

    Would it also be safe to say that you belive, as a sovereign citizen, that the gov’t cannot require you to have a driver license?

  36. the poor. And, the safest drivers are those driving UNinsured vehicles. THINK about it.
    ~+~
    That is actually the opposite of what really is the case out there. Every state in the US requires liability insurance in one form or another. People who drive without insurance are in general the most irresponsible drivers. Often they drive without insurance because they received too many traffic violations and their rates are so high, they do not buy it, further reinforcing the position that they are irresponsible because they choose to drive despite that being illegal.

    Nearly all suspended or revoked drivers drive without insurance. People have their licenses suspended or revoked because they are are either habitual traffic offenders or because they do not pay their traffic fines. ( a few are suspended for not paying child or spouse support, but again, irresponsible)

    plus, how can it be considered something that should be decriminalized when half of a fatal traffic collisions involve DUI? Just because someone hasn’t YET been killed by a drunk driver doesn’t mean it is not illegal. Otherwise non-traffic crimes such as Reckless Endangerment would not be enforceable since nobody was actually injured.

    I have been involved in hundreds of DUI incidents. In all that time I have seen only one incident where a person was legally excused in doing so. In that case it was a legally drunk woman had been feloniously assaulted by her husband who chased her with a weapon. The only way she could get away from him was to jump into her car and drive away because she feared for her life. We did not charge her for DUI due to she having an affirmative defense and there being exigent circumstances. Her huband was later arrested and she was given a ride to a relative’s house. The remainder of the DUI incidents at the very least put others in great jeopardy or at worse innocents were killed.

    If there was no deterrant for others to drink & drive, great numbers of people would do so. And if the thinking was out there that someone would not get charged unless a collision happened, 99% of drunks out there would in their drunken bravado and foolishness would belive they are good enough to make it home. Then someone gets hurt (and it is usually not the drunk)

  37. rafflaw 1, February 17, 2013 at 5:21 pm

    Dredd,
    I agree with the goal of demilitarizing the police forces. However, the semi-automatic weapons and large capacity magazines gives them an argument why they need some of the hardware.
    ======================================
    And that raises the value of history … what really happened.

    We know who armed up first and why.

    Follow the watering down of Posse Comitatus as the police became militarized.

    Like General Wesley Clark said, there was a coup.

    The government started all this so it is incumbent on them to set the proper example and do like the Bobbies of England.

    If it is sincere, the people will do likewise.

  38. rafflaw

    Yes, really. No DUI laws. And no law against driving while mad, depressed,
    talking on a cell phone, texting, listening to music, right-wing blowhards etc.

    WOW. Only laws against causing injury, harm, or property damage…ut just for you, i might support a law against driving that scares the bejesus out of
    nervous people. Oh, I support wide highways and nickle beer, Too. Any objections — other than Bow Wow Wow?

  39. There is a name for what bill mcwilliams desires: anarchy.

    That and he laps up the negative attention better than any 3-year old ham ever could.

  40. Funny to read the gun control crowd comparing the second amendment to owning a car and those that post news links from media operating out of cities like Chicago and New york. Nobody is forcing anyone to own a gun. I have many handguns, semi auto rifles and shotguns. They havent killed me, nor any of my family members or any neighbors.
    The supreme court has already ruled that Citizens have the right to protect oneself outside the home. IMO we should right to arm ourselfs with the same weapons as Law Enforcement. If they need them; then so do those citizens that take it upon themselves to want to protect their properties and not rely on the nanny state.

  41. Is that JAMES in LA LA land? I was hoping that you might have had a thought that you could articulate, but no, all you could muster is insult.
    A real, genuine idiot’s delight.

  42. If what causes the first bullet to be shot at someone can be accurately understood, such that the first bullet is never shot, it will not matter if there are a quadrillion more bullets in a high-capacity firearm magazine.

    Stopping the n+1 bullet allows murdering n people. To make n=0, which I regard as the only useful goal, it is required that accurate enough understanding of what happens to human brains that make some people willing to fire bullet 1.

    Once bullet 1 has been fired, the next person to fire a bullet will again fire bullet 1, and this will go on endlessly until what allows, or requires, people to filre bullet 1 is discerned with sufficient accuracy that bullet 1 is not ever again fired.

    There are folks who have worked on aspects of the bullet 1 problem. One such person, in my view, was Benjamin Libet (1916-2007), who summarized his life work in “MInd Time: The Temporal Factor in Consciousness,” Harvard University Press, 2004.

    Libet observed that “most people” make a decision unconsciously about half a second before becoming consciously aware of the decision made outside conscious awareness, and also observed that “most” peoples’ conscious awareness reconstructs the temporal aspect of decision-making so that conscious experience is of the decision having been made consciously in spite of such reconstruction being both readily and tangibly demonstrably false.

    Whereas people who have developed through the traditionally normative socialization stages of infancy, childhood, adolescence, and adulthood consistently employ mind time as a coping mechanism for attempted reconciliation of consciousness with actual unconscious decision-making, my bioengineering research demonstrates that sufficiently language-delayed autistic people tend to be consciously aware of their decision-making process.

    Some few such language-delayed autistic people can actually verbally articulate their decision-making process during the process itself. I find that I am a living example of such an autistic person; I never went through the infant-child transition (aka, the terrible twos) and never developed the unconscious decision-making mind that is typical, in my research findings to date, of about 98 percent of adult age people with whom I have shared my research methodology and results.

    Asked by me, “Ever make mistakes?” about 1 in 500 people replies, in effect (in my composite paraphrase), “No, I never make mistakes because I only have learning experiences, and I need to learn what is worth avoiding at least as much as I need to learn what is worth doing.”

    The problem I have with “free will” is simple. if my will were truly free, it would be free of any sort of informed and disciplined learning, and it, if unconscious, would freely coerce me into doing things contrary to my conscious will, purpose, and intent.

    If, in the manner of Libet’s ,mind time, my consciousness confabulates having made the decision actually made outside my consciousness, I would be vulnerable to succumbing to the neurological-biological absurdity that I have come to regard as the fallacious and severely traumatizing socially conventional notion of guilt.

    Only when the process of humans making decisions is fully conscious, as it is with me and with some other autism-adequate people I have known, will it be possible to stop the firing of bullet 1, so I find.

  43. I may be the only person commenting here who has had to use a firearm to defend my life. I didn’t have to fire it; I didn’t even have to point it at the bad guy. He saw it and suddenly had more important business elsewhere. I did not report it to the police because he was long gone, and given the way many cops feel about citizens with guns I believed I would only be making trouble for myself. It happened at one of the most remote highway rest stops in the eastern US, so the cops “always there to protect” were many miles away.

    I was lucky I had that little Hungarian police surplus pistol that night. So was my girlfriend – I believe the would-be attacker just wanted to get me out of the way so he could rape/abduct/murder her.

    I am not here to debate gun control. As a former Mass. resident, I know it’s useless, but you are entitled to your own opinion. I will simply make a statement: regardless of how YOU may feel about firearms, and regardless of the laws that exist or will be enacted, I will always have one. If the situation warrants, I will carry it concealed even if that is illegal. You may argue that I will be a criminal. That’s fine, I will argue back that I will be alive and protected in a society that has renounced its obligation to protect its citizens. See Warren vs. DC 444 A.2d. 1, D.C. Ct. of Ap. 1981

  44. OS-
    “Automatic submachine guns have been illegal for public use since 1934. A true assault rifle is a submachine gun.”

    Not to nitpick, but the amount of incorrect information regarding firearms is immense, so I can’t let this go by. Assault rifles are by definition NOT sub-machine guns. Sub-machine guns use handgun ammunition. The assault rifle was developed by the German military during WWII as a compromise between sub-machine guns (which gave individual soldiers the firepower of a machine gun) and full sized battle rifles (which were much more powerful and had longer range). That’s why it drives gun enthusiasts nuts when we see assault rifles described as “high powered”. They aren’t by design.

    mespo-
    “No citizen not engaged in the military needs a 30 round combat clip and no rational person thinks he/she does.”

    Well that’s a great way to start off a debate. Define your opposition as irrational if they disagree with you.

    “Let’s face it, the crowd demanding this “right” are either involved in selling firearms or convinced that they are under imminent attack from the government.”

    I fall into neither category. I’m against it because it is arbitrary, will have no measurable effect on gun deaths, and distracts from the real issues driving violent crime. Remember, the worst mass shooting in U.S. history was done with two handguns (one of which was a very very low powered .22) and no high capacity magazines.

    Anyway, the national response in terms of gun control will be the closure of the face to face sale loophole. How they will do this will be interesting, because to make it effective will require de facto registration. The ban on high and standard sized magazines is all but dead. The AWB is dead. The only significant gun control we are seeing is at the state level and, with the exception of Colorado, has occurred only in states that already had severe laws.

  45. Mea culpa. I shall endeavor in future not to feed pathetic, psychotic, attention-craving trolls who are too weak to survive a nanosecond in actual anarchy.

  46. Jason,
    OK, how about something a little more direct?

    Anyone that thinks that they need a 30-round ammunition attachment is mentally ill, and should not be allowed near a firearm of any kind.

    Better?

    “The ban on high and standard sized magazines is all but dead. The AWB is dead.”

    Wrong.

    “Gun enthusiasts…” Nice euphemism.
    Gun nuts. Fewer syllables.

  47. Rafflaw:

    One of the problems in the gun debate are the statements that gun owners are not open to “reasonable compromise”.

    Intellectually, I am open to compromise, but then I get signals that a compromise is just a step towards total surrender.

    Read the article from the Seattle Times (a liberal columnist writing for a liberal paper). The essence of the proposed legislation is that gun owners have to waive their 4th Amendment Rights to keep some of their 2nd Amendment Rights.

    I suspect that many AR owners would practice civil disobedience: that is how formerly law abiding citizens are legislated into being outlaws.

    http://seattletimes.com/html/localnews/2020373291_westneat17xml.html#.USEXugbndv1.facebook

    Misstep in gun bill could defeat the effort
    Seattle Times, February 17, 2013

    One of the major gun-control efforts in Olympia this session calls for the sheriff to inspect the homes of assault-weapon owners. The bill’s backers say that was a mistake.

    Forget police drones flying over your house. How about police coming inside, once a year, to have a look around?

    As Orwellian as that sounds, it isn’t hypothetical. The notion of police home inspections was introduced in a bill last week in Olympia.

    That it’s part of one of the major gun-control efforts pains me. It seemed in recent weeks lawmakers might be headed toward some common-sense regulation of gun sales. But then last week they went too far. By mistake, they claim. But still too far.

    “They always say, we’ll never go house to house to take your guns away. But then you see this, and you have to wonder.”

    That’s no gun-rights absolutist talking, but Lance Palmer, a Seattle trial lawyer and self-described liberal who brought the troubling Senate Bill 5737 to my attention. It’s the long-awaited assault-weapons ban, introduced last week by three Seattle Democrats.

    Responding to the Newtown school massacre, the bill would ban the sale of semi-automatic weapons that use detachable ammunition magazines. Clips that contain more than 10 rounds would be illegal.

    But then, with respect to the thousands of weapons like that already owned by Washington residents, the bill says this:

    “In order to continue to possess an assault weapon that was legally possessed on the effective date of this section, the person possessing shall … safely and securely store the assault weapon. The sheriff of the county may, no more than once per year, conduct an inspection to ensure compliance with this subsection.”

    In other words, come into homes without a warrant to poke around. Failure to comply could get you up to a year in jail.

    “I’m a liberal Democrat — I’ve voted for only one Republican in my life,” Palmer told me. “But now I understand why my right-wing opponents worry about having to fight a government takeover.”

    He added: “It’s exactly this sort of thing that drives people into the arms of the NRA.”

    I have been blasting the NRA for its paranoia in the gun-control debate. But Palmer is right — you can’t fully blame them, when cops going door-to-door shows up in legislation.

    I spoke to two of the sponsors. One, Sen. Adam Kline, D-Seattle, a lawyer who typically is hyper-attuned to civil-liberties issues, said he did not know the bill authorized police searches because he had not read it closely before signing on.

    “I made a mistake,” Kline said. “I frankly should have vetted this more closely.”

    That lawmakers sponsor bills they haven’t read is common. Still, it’s disappointing on one of this political magnitude. Not counting a long table, it’s only an eight-page bill.

    The prime sponsor, Sen. Ed Murray, D-Seattle, also condemned the search provision in his own bill, after I asked him about it. He said Palmer is right that it’s probably unconstitutional.

    “I have to admit that shouldn’t be in there,” Murray said.

    He said he came to realize that an assault-weapons ban has little chance of passing this year anyway. So he put in this bill more as “a general statement, as a guiding light of where we need to go.” Without sweating all the details.

  48. Maybe if the funded mental health again and education there would not be the need for one to get guns…..

    Nut, if you make something illegal…. Don’t most people want it….

    Nick, you are correct…. Save Philly…..

  49. Jason and OS:

    Well said. Not that it will make any difference to the original poster.

    Mespo:

    “As for the second, if you really think you’re going to fight off the black helicopters with your store-bought AK-47, wake up now because you’re no match for a trained assault team.”

    I’m not particularly interested in fighting black helicopters, but I think one should acknowledge that a bunch of guys with little more than some AK-47’s, some explosives, and a lot of determination did a pretty good job of tying the United States Army in knots for a considerable period of time in Iraq and Afghanistan, notwithstanding the helicopters, tanks, and drones available to US troops.

  50. Steve,
    The author of the bill in your linked article admitted that the offensive language should not be there. He admitted his mistake. The bill will not be passed so you can relax. Reasonable gun control is necessary and doable on the Federal level.

  51. Good article by a reporter that agreed to go take the NRA safety course. He’s not pro-gun.

    http://nhregister.com/articles/2013/02/17/news/doc51205e1e31077391794778.txt?viewmode=default

    I was most pleased at this section. He gets it. He understands that to be enthusiastic about guns doesn’t make one crazy:

    “Pear’s [the instructor] enthusiasm about his collection of firearms was infectious. Though most of what he said about manufacturers and availability and customization went over my head, he was speaking a language I had heard before. He spoke with the glee of an enthusiast, a hobbyist — with the glee of a camera guy talking about his new gear, a guitarist talking about his new axe, a gadget guy talking about his new home media server.”

  52. Jason,
    That’s what I get for trying to write something when bone tired. What I was trying to get across was that a true assault rifle is a fully auto capable, select fire weapon that can be carried easily by a single person and fired without a crew.

    Unlike, say, the Ma Deuce, which is a REAL machine gun. For those who don’t know the slang: Ma Deuce = M-2 Browning machine gun. It weighs over 125 pounds with the tripod it sits on.

  53. Porkchop:

    “I’m not particularly interested in fighting black helicopters, but I think one should acknowledge that a bunch of guys with little more than some AK-47′s, some explosives, and a lot of determination did a pretty good job of tying the United States Army in knots for a considerable period of time in Iraq and Afghanistan, notwithstanding the helicopters, tanks, and drones available to US troops.”

    *****************************

    Like I said you’re no match for a trained assault team and maybe it’s because you have more putative guts than our terrorist adversaries who hit, run, and then inevitably die later at the hands of those same knot-bound soldiers, marines and airmen.

    AK-47 carrying cowards all, and the same for those who sing their praises.

  54. jason:

    “mespo-
    “No citizen not engaged in the military needs a 30 round combat clip and no rational person thinks he/she does.”

    Well that’s a great way to start off a debate. Define your opposition as irrational if they disagree with you.”

    **********************

    How’s about refuting the point and displaying your rationality instead of whining about the technique of argumentation.

  55. Rick:

    “The supreme court has already ruled that Citizens have the right to protect oneself outside the home. IMO we should right to arm ourselfs with the same weapons as Law Enforcement.”

    *************************

    Why stop there ,Rick? How about we arm ourselves like the 1st Air Cav. I’ll put you down for a MK19 40 mm air cooled machine gun.

  56. mespo-
    There is precious little in this world that anybody “needs”. Need has not a damned thing to do with it.

    And given that all long guns (which encompasses “assault weapons” which in turn encompass the vast majority of “high capacity” magazines) account for well under 5% of gun murders, why is the burden on me to show why I need them? The status quo is that they are legal. You tell me what the “need” is to ban them. There is no “need” to enact a ban that would have no measurable effect on gun deaths. There are consumer products that openly market their ability to break the law. We don’t ban them due to the lack of “need”.

    And honestly, I expect better from you than using indefensible name calling and when called out on it, hand waving it as whining.

  57. mespo:

    those little things shaped like a champagne bottle that shoot out confetti when you pull the string? Yeah, those will do.

    Although I am sure a 40mm high explosive round does hell to an outhouse. We blew up a refrigerator once using black powder. Which was a passible substitute.

    And I have it on good authority that a relative by marriage blew up the equipment shed at the local high school using dynamite when he was a student. But the statute of limitations has run its course.

    It is too bad there are so many crazy sons of b*tches out there, shooting a fully automatic weapon is fun. And if you only have 30 rounds, it is gone as fast as you can type bzzzzzt. Reloading is a pain in the a$$.

    If they take away a 30 round clip or only allow us 7 for a pistol, I would just carry 2 pistols and have 4 extra clips. But with that being said, if you cant take out a bad guy or 2 with 7 shots, you might want to hire a body guard. You shouldnt be using a weapon.

  58. Jason:

    “There is precious little in this world that anybody “needs”. Need has not a damned thing to do with it.

    And given that all long guns (which encompasses “assault weapons” which in turn encompass the vast majority of “high capacity” magazines) account for well under 5% of gun murders, why is the burden on me to show why I need them? The status quo is that they are legal. You tell me what the “need” is to ban them. There is no “need” to enact a ban that would have no measurable effect on gun deaths. There are consumer products that openly market their ability to break the law. We don’t ban them due to the lack of “need”

    *********************

    Thank you for conceding the point that no one needs a 30 round clip.

    The fundamental problem, Jason, is that you do not understand the Second Amendment. There is nothing in the Second Amendment guaranteeing you the unfettered right to any firearm or weapon you choose.

    Even that darling of the gun-toting crowd, Justice Scalia, conceded that much in Heller. Scalia said “Of course the right was not unlimited … [W]e do not read the Second Amendment to protect the right of citizens to carry arms for any sort of confrontation.” “We also recognize another important limitation on the right to keep and carry arms. [T]he sorts of weapons protected were those ‘in common use at the time.’ We think that limitation is fairly supported by the historical tradition of prohibiting the carrying of ‘dangerous and unusual weapons.’”

    “Dangerous and unusual” seems a pretty fair description of a 30 round combat clip and given your concession that it is unneeded, I think very little stands in Congress’ way constitutionally if they want to ban manufacture of these weapons.

    Read more; get huffy less.

  59. “”The National Rifle Association will wait until the “Connecticut effect” has subsided to resume its push to weaken the nation’s gun laws, according to a top NRA lobbyist…”

    The NRA says if we would enforce all the gun laws we currently have, we would have prevented a lot of crimes committed.

  60. Regarding rounds and rate of fire. Note the little video of Cpl. Tomasie upstream. He is using a standard sidearm commonly used by the military, police, security guards, competition and self defense. If you watch the timer on the video, he empties three ten round magazines in six seconds, reloading twice. That is thirty shots in six seconds. Anyone with at least average eye-hand coordination can learn to do that. Here is the link to my comment. It is the lower of the two videos. This is why a large capacity magazine ban is mostly irrelevant.

    http://jonathanturley.org/2013/02/17/the-connecticut-effect/#comment-504089

    I go back to my original statement. Instead of focusing on the tools, let’s focus on the causes of crimes. Ban one kind of weapon, and some crazy person will wipe out a schoolroom or a mall with some other kind of device or weapon. Treat the crazy part. Mental health care in this country is almost non-existent. “Mental health center” in most communities is an oxymoron. There is not a psychiatrist in our community I know of who takes insurance. Cash at the time of visit. No exceptions. There are psychiatrists at the so-called mental health center who take insurance, but it is easier to get an appointment with the President than to get in to see one. They supervise nurses who pass out prescriptions. “Therapy” is usually done by a marginally qualified case worker who has a huge case load, is burned out and who would not know a dangerous patient from a circus clown.

  61. Mespo,

    Acknowledging someone’s military effectiveness is not the same as singing their praises. That being said, people who are willing to die for a cause are not “cowards”. Their cause may be despicable and their beliefs and actions heinous, but that does not make them cowards. It is a word that is misused too much these days.

    I think you overstate the inevitability of death for those adversaries. The US was in Iraq for 7-1/2 years, and the insurgency continued after we left. We are not there anymore, and some significant number of our adversaries survived. We are still in Afghanistan; victory (in the sense of the destruction of the adversary’s ability to resist) is hardly inevitable. Indeed, the Karzai government is reported to be seeking some form of accommodation with the Taliban — and we are preparing to withdraw. The United States has been playing “Whack-a-Mole” in those two countries for the last 12 years, and there are still moles popping up.

    In terms of hit-and-run tactics being “cowardly”, where you stand depends on where you sit. People engaged in warfare use the tools and opportunities that are available to them, regardless of the “rules” that the other side thinks should apply. Guerrilla warfare — asymmetric warfare, as it is now called — has a long history. It was a mainstay of the American Revolution, because, for the most part. the colonists could not stand and fight the British regulars in an exchange of volleyed musket fire, as was customary in Europe at the time.

    The British supported guerrilla warfare in Spain during the Napoleonic Wars, fought against it during the Boer War, and supported it in Arabia during World War I. The OSS and British Special Operations Executive supported resistance movements that blew up trains during World War II; communist partisans supported by the Soviet Union did the same on the eastern front.

    One of the primary missions of the U.S. Arny Special Forces (the “Green Berets”) during the Cold War was to teach just such tactics to resistance movements that United States foreign policy favored. We supported a resistance movement in Afghanistan that engaged in precisely those tactics during the Soviet occupation of that country. Indeed, some of those who learned and employed such tactics while fighting the Soviets, that is, while they were “good guys”, were the very ones who employed them against the US and its allies after 2001.

    In short, don’t confuse the effectiveness of tactics with the moral character of the adversary, and don’t dismiss an adversary as a coward because you don’t like his tactics. Your opinion of the morality of that adversary and his tactics is irrelevant to their military effectiveness.

  62. Mespo:

    ” ‘Dangerous and unusual’ seems a pretty fair description of a 30 round combat clip and given your concession that it is unneeded, I think very little stands in Congress’ way constitutionally if they want to ban manufacture of these weapons.”

    Well, no. Much as you would like that to be the case, the 30-roud magazine is very much “in common use at [this] time”.

    “Thank you for conceding the point that no one needs a 30 round clip.”

    Well, no, he didn’t.

  63. Porkchop:

    “Acknowledging someone’s military effectiveness is not the same as singing their praises. That being said, people who are willing to die for a cause are not “cowards”. Their cause may be despicable and their beliefs and actions heinous, but that does not make them cowards. It is a word that is misused too much these days.”

    “In terms of hit-and-run tactics being “cowardly”, where you stand depends on where you sit. People engaged in warfare use the tools and opportunities that are available to them, regardless of the “rules” that the other side thinks should apply. Guerrilla warfare — asymmetric warfare, as it is now called — has a long history. It was a mainstay of the American Revolution, because, for the most part. the colonists could not stand and fight the British regulars in an exchange of volleyed musket fire, as was customary in Europe at the time.”

    ********************************

    Please don’t equate the American colonists seeking freedom with those freedom-hating savages locked in combat with our troops. These folks are cowards through and through. I never heard of Paul Revere throwing battery acid into the faces of little girls for trying to go to school. George Washington never placed explosives on sailing ships to kill civilian passengers. Ethan Allen never blew up a marketplace for military advantage.

    You may find their tactics admirable or the euphemistically coined “effective” but I suggest you consider suicide bombings, human shields, and execution of civilians before lauding these gangsters. You might as well equate Mussolini and Churchill — both were male you know and liked wearing military uniforms.

  64. Porkchop:

    Since you have no trouble completely missing Jason’s rather obvious concession,maybe you could likewise misconstrue Scalia in Heller and tell me how a 30 round combat clip would be consistent with a weapon in use in 1787.

  65. They are missing the biggest problem with banning something…IT DOESN’T WORK.

    Doesn’t work with drugs, didn’t work with liquor, and it won’t work with guns.

    But some of these problems are related, like Chicago’s murder rate, the biggest percentage of those are gang/drug related.

    Anyone remember prohibition?

    Why did they legalize booze again after a 13 year ban on it? Was it NOW found to be healthy for people?
    No they got rid of prohibition because of all the gangs, murders, corruption, & cost of imprisoning people for it.

    Ok, now how do you suppose we could get rid of our gang, murder, corruption, & ever increasing prison costs?

    Legalize all drugs, and get these freaks off the worst of them, so they aren’t out killing innocent people and each other in turf wars.
    Use the revenue from them to try to rehabilitate users, like they have done with cigarettes & alcohol.

    You want some “common sense” laws….then stop and think about it…and use some common sense…

  66. Mespo,

    You spend a lot of time deliberately misreading comments you disagree with, rather than actually responding to them. Your ad hominem attacks are ridiculous.

    You don’t seem to know much about second amendment law: The people’s right to keep and bear arms is not limited to single-shot muskets or Kentucky long rifles. Heller, by the way, was about the right to possess a modern semiautomatic pistol with a detachable box magazine — not a muzzle-loading horse-pistol. The best you can do is argue that there is some magic number less than 30 that should apply to magazine capacity.

    You don’t seem to know much about firearms, either, but trying to discuss actual facts about firearms just goes over your head, anyway, so I won’t try to explain just how nonsensical the term “30 round combat clip” is.

  67. Yes, it’s horrific having kids murdered, but it seems like if the killings are sanctioned by the state, like Obama’s Drone murders…it seems the killing of children is tolerated.

    A AR15 is NOT an assault rifle, it only LOOKS like one. I suppose if we had slingshots that looked like them, they’d want those banned too!

    Remember a federal law will affect EVERYONE!

    Remember the LA Riots? Mobs of people looting & killing. Or more recently Katrina, again with mobs looting & killing. People said that they managed to keep looters away, only becuase they had semi auto’s with large magazines.

    Also we have the Haymarket massacre, Lattimer Massacre, Ludlow Massacre, Bay View Massacre, and the Battle of Athens. Examples go on & on where people needed to defend themselves.

    Sure there’s always going to be a few that will make it look bad, but there is no need to punish the majority of honest gun owners, or pass laws that will make them criminals too.

  68. Okay, let me try this again, since you don’t actually read comments before you respond.

    You asked me to “tell me how a 30 round combat clip would be consistent with a weapon in use in 1787.”

    Your error is in assuming that in order to be protected under the second amendment, a weapon must have been in use in 1787 — in other words, a muzzle-loading single shot weapon. That is just wrong.

    As Justice Scalia explained in Heller:

    “Some have made the argument, bordering on the frivolous,
    that only those arms in existence in the 18th century
    are protected by the Second Amendment. We do not interpret
    constitutional rights that way. Just as the First
    Amendment protects modern forms of communications,
    e.g., Reno v. American Civil Liberties Union, 521 U. S. 844,
    849 (1997), and the Fourth Amendment applies to modern
    forms of search, e.g., Kyllo v. United States, 533 U. S. 27,
    35–36 (2001), the Second Amendment extends, prima
    facie, to all instruments that constitute bearable arms,
    even those that were not in existence at the time of the
    founding.”

    So, a modern magazine-fed firearm (a “bearable arm”) is fully “consistent” with the second amendment. An argument to the contrary “border[s] on the frivolous.”

    Heller dealt in particular with the District of Columbia ban on handguns. Generally speaking, there are two kinds of modern handguns — revolvers and semiautomatic (or self-loading) pistols. The latter are commonly fed by means of a detachable box magazine (erroneously called by some a “clip”). Both types of handgun carry more than one round — revolvers commonly carry five or six rounds; semiautomatics carry anywhere from 7 to 19 or more rounds.

    Your particular objection is to the (very common) 30-round magazine, specifically, its use in a long gun.

    But it is clear under Heller that magazine-fed handguns are allowed. Indeed, revolver sales are at best 20% of the modern handgun market. Heller did not directly address long guns; I hope that you recognize, though,that long guns are also “bearable arms” that are militarily useful and in common use by law-abiding citizens.

    You are fixated on magazine capacity, but you have not articulated how any particular capacity would fall outside the scope of the second amendment — apparently, if you call it a “combat clip” it becomes something different.

    I assume that you object to 30-round magazines for any firearm, not just AR-15 platform rifles or carbines. But if not, please explain the distinction.

    So, what is your number? Is 29 rounds okay? 25? 15? 10? How about if it is a “regular clip” not a “combat clip”? The most popular handgun in the US recently is the Glock 19 which comes with a standard 15 round magazine. It’s in “common use” and is clearly militarily useful, because its forerunner, the Glock 17 is the standard issue sidearm for the Austrian army. Woul you ban that?

  69. Mespo-
    “The fundamental problem, Jason, is that you do not understand the Second Amendment. There is nothing in the Second Amendment guaranteeing you the unfettered right to any firearm or weapon you choose.”

    I never said otherwise.

    “Dangerous and unusual” seems a pretty fair description of a 30 round combat clip”

    Where do you come up with this stuff? People who know the slightest bit about guns have more or less given up on correcting the “clip” idiocy (it doesn’t help when cops are as ignorant as the general public). But “combat” clips?

    And they aren’t unusual. And they aren’t any more dangerous than any other magazine. The truly high capacity magazines are if anything less dangerous as they are poorly made gimmicks. And there’s about a dozen variables more important in determining the lethality of a shooting than the size of the magazine. Cho didn’t need assault weapons with high capacity magazines to rack up the worst death toll of any of these incidents. One of his guns fired a medium powered handgun round and the other fired one of the least powerful rounds in use.

    “and given your concession that it is unneeded, I think very little stands in Congress’ way constitutionally if they want to ban manufacture of these weapons.”

    We’ll see. It’s academic because they aren’t going to do it, but we’ll see. Kachalsky v. Cacace has the potential to answer all of this, and not in a way you’ll like.

    I’ll ask again, why is there a need to ban an instrument that is used in a tiny fraction of gun murders? Blunt instruments are used more often.

    “Read more; get huffy less.”

    You’re adorable.

  70. porkchop:

    “So, a modern magazine-fed firearm (a “bearable arm”) is fully “consistent” with the second amendment. An argument to the contrary “border[s] on the frivolous.”

    Heller dealt in particular with the District of Columbia ban on handguns. Generally speaking, there are two kinds of modern handguns — revolvers and semiautomatic (or self-loading) pistols. The latter are commonly fed by means of a detachable box magazine (erroneously called by some a “clip”). Both types of handgun carry more than one round — revolvers commonly carry five or six rounds; semiautomatics carry anywhere from 7 to 19 or more rounds.”

    ********************

    You’ve succinctly proven why a fully automatic weapon is legal and constitutionally permissible . There’s just one problem. It’s not. National Firearms Act of 1968.

    Does reality ever get in the way of your arguments?

  71. mespo-
    “You’ve succinctly proven why a fully automatic weapon is legal and constitutionally permissible . There’s just one problem. It’s not. National Firearms Act of 1968.

    Does reality ever get in the way of your arguments?”

    Wow. Uh, no, fully automatic weapons are not illegal. They are expensive due to the registry being closed and therefore locking the supply and you have to go through more bureaucratic nonsense to get them, but they aren’t illegal and anyone with enough money, a clean record, and patience can legally own one.

    If you are going to be so belligerent, you might want to have some freaking idea what you are talking about. “Combat clips,” “machine guns are illegal,” what is your next piece of firearms related idiocy?

  72. Jason:

    “Wow. Uh, no, fully automatic weapons are not illegal. They are expensive due to the registry being closed and therefore locking the supply and you have to go through more bureaucratic nonsense to get them, but they aren’t illegal and anyone with enough money, a clean record, and patience can legally own one.”

    *********************

    Well, you’re warm. From wiki: “All NFA items must be registered with the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives (ATF). Private owners wishing to purchase an NFA item must obtain approval from the ATF, obtain a signature from the Chief Law Enforcement Officer (CLEO) who is the county sheriff or city or town chief of police (not necessarily permission), pass an extensive background check to include submitting a photograph and fingerprints, fully register the firearm, receive ATF written permission before moving the firearm across state lines, and pay a tax.” … “The registration or transfer process (to an individual or corporation) takes approximately 3–6 months to complete as of October 2011.” … ” Additionally, the firearm can never be handled or transported by any other private individual unless the firearm’s registered owner is present.”

    That’s a far cry from strolling into your local K-mart with your good conduct medal and your tax refund check and picking one up like every other unregulated firearm. You want to consider that “legal,” be my guest.

  73. OS:

    “Mental health care in this country is almost non-existent. “Mental health center” in most communities is an oxymoron. There is not a psychiatrist in our community I know of who takes insurance. Cash at the time of visit. No exceptions. There are psychiatrists at the so-called mental health center who take insurance, but it is easier to get an appointment with the President than to get in to see one. They supervise nurses who pass out prescriptions. “Therapy” is usually done by a marginally qualified case worker who has a huge case load, is burned out and who would not know a dangerous patient from a circus clown.”

    Well said and in the 10 ring.

  74. Mepo,

    I have learned that reality never gets in the way of most folks argument…. Reasons, logic and rationality escape reasoning with human emotion…. Ask OS… He appears to be the blog expert….. But others try….

  75. mespo:

    “In order to continue to possess an assault weapon that was legally possessed on the effective date of this section, the person possessing shall … safely and securely store the assault weapon. The sheriff of the county may, no more than once per year, conduct an inspection to ensure compliance with this subsection.”

    From SB5737-2013

    http://apps.leg.wa.gov/billinfo/summary.aspx?bill=5737&year=2013#documents

    Isnt that a 4th amendment violation? How many of our rights are going to be violated by violating the 2nd amendment?

    The bottom line is the founders did not say anything about muskets or M-16’s. And I am pretty sure they [founders] would have loved to have had M-16’s to use against the British. Especially if they had 30 round magazines.

  76. mespo

    Thank you for recognizing the implications of Heller; I hope the Supreme Court is as perspicacious as you someday. I’m not sure how you made the leap from arguing about magazine capacity to arguing about fully automatic weapons, but if you are trying to say that my argument proves too much, then you are wrong — again.

    I am not responding in order to persuade you; I do hope to show some of your readers, however, just how misguided and uninformed you are concerning both firearms and second amendment law.

    The National Firearms Act of 1968 amended the National Firearms Act of 1934, which was a tax act. Under the 1934 Act, it was (and is) perfectly legal and constitutional to own a fully automatic weapon as long as you registered it and paid the excise tax and registration fee; many people did and they continue to do so. There is a federal license requirement and usually a state permit involved designed to assure the payment of the tax. An acquaintance of mine owns (or owned, when I last saw him) a fully automatic Thompson submachine gun. It was/is a lot of fun to shoot.

    The 1968 Act prohibited the registration of any NEW automatic weapons by individuals, but had no effect on the ownership or transfer of EXISTING registered weapons. They are still out there. The 1968 Act limited the supply of fully automatic weapons, thereby driving up prices (not that they were cheap to begin with). I am sure you are pleased about that. Nevertheless, it is still possible for an individual to own and to transfer to another individual a fully automatic weapon. So, as a matter of REALITY, ownership of a fully automatic weapon is legal and constitutionally permissible.

    To my knowledge, the Supreme Court has never addressed the constitutionality of the 1968 prohibition on new individual registration of additional fully automatic weapons. I agree with you that as a matter of intellectual consistency, the analysis in Heller (not my analysis) impliedly supports the argument that the prohibition is unconstitutional, but until that decision is taken, it is the law of the land. But don’t confuse the existence of the statute with a decision on its constitutionality.

    I realize that you would prefer that the arms covered by the second amendment be limited to muskets, but since the Supreme Court has announced that position to border on the frivolous, you need to look at the reality of modern firearms. Semiautomatic firearms technology is more than 100 years old; all semiautomatic firearms work the same regardless of barrel length, magazine capacity, pistol grips, black plastic stocks, folding stocks, collapsible stocks, laser sights, fancy optics, bayonet lugs, sound suppressors, flash suppressors, bayonet lugs, muzzle brakes, or anything else you can put onto a weapon.

    Semiautomatic weapons have been in common use for a century — they aren’t going to be banned.

    The arguments for banning “assault weapons” — defined as “scary looking rifles that we don’t really understand but that look ooky to Senator Feinstein” — all focus on cosmetics. One can convert a World War II/Korean War M-1 Carbine into a modern “assault weapon” by changing the stock — it still shoots the same .30 caliber round and is no more or less deadly when equipped with a pistol grip, or God forbid, a bayonet lug (because we should be very afraid of a bayonet-wielding madman running amok in Chicago).

    Compare

    with

    This is the same firearm, an M-1 Carbine.

    I mention the M-1 Carbine, because the United States government sold millions of surplus M-1 Carbines to private individuals starting in the 1950’s. During the Korean War, they were retrofitted with a new magazine catch to accommodate a 30-round magazine; even earlier, they the barrel band had been updated with the addition of a bayonet lug. US Government-Issued 30-round magazines for the M-1 Carbine were also sold to the public as military surplus and are highly prized for their reliability today. The combination of a 30-round magazine and the bayonet lug made the M-1 Carbine fit the definition of an assault weapon under the 1994 assault weapons ban. Either characteristic alone would make it an assault weapon under the proposed legislation, and it is one under the recently passed New York statute.

    Oops! I guess the public should not have been allowed to buy all of those “military-style assault weapons” and “high-capacity magazines” from the United States government itself. What could the government possibly have been thinking? Perhaps that the millions of WWII and Korean War veterans that used the M-1 Carbine in tie of war might possibly contribute to the security of a free state by keeping and bearing that same weapon as civilians, because they were familiar with its operation? Kind of like millions of younger veterans are familiar with the operation of the semiautomatic version of the AR-15 platform, which in the select-fire version is used in the M-16 and the M-4 issue to the military today?

    As Jason has pointed out, if you want to ban something, the duty to make the affirmative case is on you. All you have done, though, is to repeat over and over that those who oppose the ban on 30-round magazines have to prove that they “need” it. You twisted Jason’s point about “need” in your response to him. He pointed out that there is very little that anyone “needs” beyond food, water, and shelter. But then asserted that “need” is not the standard. You then argued that his assertion that a ban on 30-round magazines would have no practical effect, because one can change 10 round magazines very quickly and shoot the same number of rounds in approximately the same time somehow proved that 30-round magazines are not “needed”. To the contrary, it proves that the proposal to ban such magazines is pointless. Jason (and I) apparently agree that pointless laws are a bad thing.

    The burden is on you as the proponent of a new law to show why it should be enacted. Instead of trying to do so, you have been deliberately obtuse. You apparently know nothing of firearms, the military, or the law. You seem to do well at emotional rants and misstating opposing arguments, but that’s about it.

  77. mespo-
    “That’s a far cry from strolling into your local K-mart with your good conduct medal and your tax refund check and picking one up like every other unregulated firearm. You want to consider that “legal,” be my guest.”

    You said machine guns were illegal, stop, no qualification. They aren’t. You said nothing about how hard they are to get or where you can buy them. I could in fact take my tax refund check, point my browser to any number of websites, and order a machine gun. Obviously it will take longer to get and involve more red tape, but pretty much if you can legally own any gun, you can own a machine gun, money, time, and the LEO sign-off (which can be dodged with a bit of legal magic), and a handful of state bans being the only road blocks. Good god, is it that hard to admit you didn’t know what you were talking about? Normal people own machine guns.

    Do a Google video search on “Knob Creek machine gun shoot”. There are ranges in Las Vegas where just about anyone can rent them. They, like “high capacity combat assassin devil magazines” aren’t a problem.

    Which reminds me, what again is the “need” to ban a legal, commonly owned product that is very rarely used to kill people?

  78. Keep your eye on the ball. There are too many firearms designed for mass murder, among a delusional, paranoid population. Rooms full of people are being slaughtered.
    The “right” to own firearms has been severely abused for several decades. The result is that restrictions must be applied. These things are not toys, to be used to substitute for perceived manhood deficiencies.
    No matter how quickly one can change magazines, having learned by long practice, it’s still easier to mow down a room full of people, if you use a high-capacity magazine. Particularly in the heat of the moment. These acrobats that show off how fast they can change magazines, are not in a stress situation. In a stress situation, they’d be fumbling and dropping magazines.
    No one needs to know anything much about firearms, the military, or the law, to understand this. Don’t feign incomprehension.
    We have a problem of too many weapons designed for mass murder available for use to any “law-abiding-citizen” who happens to be having a bad day. Gun manufacturers, and their mouthpiece, the NRA, already have more than enough blood money.
    There are many things we can do to alleviate this problem. Making it more difficult to obtain these weapons is a small first step.
    Every small step toward a decent society is blocked by the NRA, and selfish “gun enthusiasts.”

  79. “Wow. Uh, no, fully automatic weapons are not illegal. They are expensive due to the registry being closed and therefore locking the supply and you have to go through more bureaucratic nonsense to get them, but they aren’t illegal and anyone with enough money, a clean record, and patience can legally own one.”

    Jason,

    On this blog I’ve supported the right to bear arms for years and I still do. However, reading your comment above I’m struck by the underlying basis of your argument, which at best seems trivial. The argument from the pro-gun side in many cases boils down to the fact that what is proposed will make projectile weapons “inconvenient” to purchase.

    You will notice I am not asking about why someone would want a projectile weapon with a 30 round clip? I actually get that in a small way. I don’t own a projectile weapon, or should I further clarify that by saying I’m not referring to, bows, crossbows and/or air rifles. I’ve shot handguns and I’ve shot rifles at targets and I can understand the pleasure people derive from it. One does get a certain amount of excitement handling such a weapon and knowing what it is capable of, so I can get why so many people are into them. Also too there is the pleasure that people who collect “anything” gain from handling and observing their collection. While I’ve never hunted, shooting a dog with my BB gun at age twelve mortified me afterwards and I’ve regretted that childish impulsiveness for 56 years. I have had friends who were avid hunters and through their stories I understand the attraction it has for them. Then too there are those who find hunting supplements their food stores. All of this seems reasonable to me and I wouldn’t want to deprive those people into it of their pleasures. Here’s where I differ from most gun proponents and what I don’t get about their positions.

    Why is it “necessary” to have concealed carry in Churches, Synagogues, Mosques, bars, restaurants and movie theaters. Laws permitting this have sprung up all over the nation back by the NRA.

    What is so offensive about background checks and licensing of weapons?

    Why is it imperative for someone to be able to purchase a projectile weapon within minutes and if so why?

    Since I do support people having the right to bear arms and have done so here for years, I must say their are a few things about proponents that disturb me. I have read the NRA’s magazine and find it bordering on the insane in its views. It is an ultra-Right Wing publication and if taken alone as representing
    2nd Amendment proponents actually makes feel distasteful about supporting them. Beyond that Mr. LaPierre does the NRA no credit in representing your interests and in fact he comes off as someone with a mental disturbance.

    Finally, why don’t you find this offensive?

    “The National Rifle Association will wait until the “Connecticut effect” has subsided to resume its push to weaken the nation’s gun laws, according to a top NRA lobbyist speaking at the NRA’s Wisconsin State Convention this weekend.”

    The death of 27 at Sandy Hook seems to be viewed as a mere inconvenience that needs to die down. Whatever was at fault for Sandy Hook, even if it was this one crazy young man, the tragedy visited upon these children and their loved ones cannot help but provoke great empathy and sympathy. Yet truthfully, rather than feeling empathy for these innocent victims, many have dragged up conspiracy theories and vilified those parents who in their grief search for answers and amelioration.

    Clearly banning such weaponry, given the 300 million weapons already in private hands, is no solution. However, licensing, background checks and making sales less automatic may have some effect and make people feel easier.

    The other part of the defense of the 2nd Amendment I find peculiar and very hard to relate to, is what seems to be the fear that motivates many to feel they must be armed. My career was spent working in some of the “worst” neighborhoods in the country, both day and night, predominantly alone and on the streets. I never carried a weapon, not even a pocket knife and some of this time was spent during the dread “crack epidemic” in NYC in the 80’s. While I’m not a particularly brave man, I am quite street smart and alert. I cannot think of any time that I was ever afraid, or when people’s actions and demeanor, alerted me to any danger. This was because the “danger” of these places was an overrated issue raised by the media. The crime rate has fallen consistently in the last 20 years but above are comments from people who believe their weapons will save them from death at the hands of chimeric “savage hordes”. In my opinion those who believe that and whose opinions are modeled by the NRA do no service to your cause.

  80. “There are psychiatrists at the so-called mental health center who take insurance, but it is easier to get an appointment with the President than to get in to see one. They supervise nurses who pass out prescriptions. “Therapy” is usually done by a marginally qualified case worker who has a huge case load, is burned out and who would not know a dangerous patient from a circus clown.”

    OS,

    The sad thing is you’re a being quite charitable and fair in your assessment. Most psychiatrists today are merely pill pushers.

  81. Bob Kauten,

    Where do you live? Who are all of these delusional, paranoid people? How do you know? Have you spoken to them? What is the difference between a firearm “designed for mass murder” and some other firearm? Is there some kind of bright line test?

    Murder (and other crime) rates have been declining for a couple of decades, so who has been severely abusing the right to own firearms, and where has this been happening? And by the way, “right” shouldn’t be in scare quotes, because, it is in fact and in law a real right, as affirmed by the Supreme Court in Heller.

    Psychoanalyzing a tens of millions of firearms owners at one time — that’s quite a feat of intellect there. I kind of wonder about the problem with perceived manhood deficiencies for the millions of female firearms owners, though. I think you are projecting, not that I am a trained psychoanalyst.

    How do you know that the “acrobats” haven’t already demonstrated that they can change magazines under stress. We have a lot of combat veterans out there.

    Your concept of a decent society scares me.

  82. Mike Spindell-
    “Why is it “necessary” to have concealed carry in Churches, Synagogues, Mosques, bars, restaurants and movie theaters. Laws permitting this have sprung up all over the nation back by the NRA.”

    The point behind concealed carry is that you can’t know when you might need to defend yourself, and crimes have been committed in such locales. The laws that I’ve seen don’t force these places to allow carry, they give them the option of allowing it. Just so we’re clear, I’m against forcing any private establishment to allow carry and the vast majority of those who advocate for concealed carry agree. There is nothing about a church or movie theater that makes concealed carry less logical. If you are against the whole concept in the first place, that’s fine, we can agree to disagree.

    “What is so offensive about background checks and licensing of weapons?”

    I’ve never said that background checks are offensive and support them. Licensing opens all kinds of doors I don’t want to walk down.

    “Why is it imperative for someone to be able to purchase a projectile weapon within minutes and if so why?”

    It might be imperative due to a threat. It usually isn’t of course, but then the burden is on you to show that such delays have any benefit.

    “Since I do support people having the right to bear arms and have done so here for years, I must say their are a few things about proponents that disturb me. I have read the NRA’s magazine and find it bordering on the insane in its views.”

    I’m an infrequent poster here so I don’t expect you to remember, but I’ve said many times that I detest the NRA. They are doing at least as much harm to the “cause” as good. They are fear mongering idiots.

    “It is an ultra-Right Wing publication and if taken alone as representing
    2nd Amendment proponents actually makes feel distasteful about supporting them. Beyond that Mr. LaPierre does the NRA no credit in representing your interests and in fact he comes off as someone with a mental disturbance.'”

    I agree. I’ve never carried water for the NRA here or anywhere else.

    “Finally, why don’t you find this offensive?

    “The National Rifle Association will wait until the “Connecticut effect” has subsided to resume its push to weaken the nation’s gun laws, according to a top NRA lobbyist speaking at the NRA’s Wisconsin State Convention this weekend.””

    Your entire response relies upon false assumption after false assumption. I do find that offensive.

    “Yet truthfully, rather than feeling empathy for these innocent victims, many have dragged up conspiracy theories and vilified those parents who in their grief search for answers and amelioration.”

    I spent that afternoon hugging my two year old son and trying not to throw up. Literally. I can’t comprehend that level of pain.

    “Clearly banning such weaponry, given the 300 million weapons already in private hands, is no solution. However, licensing, background checks and making sales less automatic may have some effect and make people feel easier.”

    Background checks are fine, but I don’t think there’s much utility in the other things you suggest. And to be frank, I’m not concerned about making people “feel” easy or safe. When we legislate based on irrational fears, we get garbage like PATRIOT and SOPA and just about every other post 9/11 rape of the Bill of Rights.

    “The other part of the defense of the 2nd Amendment I find peculiar and very hard to relate to, is what seems to be the fear that motivates many to feel they must be armed. My career was spent working in some of the “worst” neighborhoods in the country, both day and night, predominantly alone and on the streets. I never carried a weapon, not even a pocket knife and some of this time was spent during the dread “crack epidemic” in NYC in the 80′s. While I’m not a particularly brave man, I am quite street smart and alert. I cannot think of any time that I was ever afraid, or when people’s actions and demeanor, alerted me to any danger.”

    Mike, I go unarmed frequently, sometimes due to the location, sometimes due to inconvenience. I don’t feel naked or unsafe. I didn’t even own a gun until I was over 40, and I didn’t get my permit and start carrying because I was terrified of an imminent threat, real or imagined. But I also don’t feel paranoid about car accidents when I buckle my seat belt. It’s a last resort in the event of a rare occurrence, that’s all. You can’t lump every gun owner into the Ted Nugent category.

    And don’t you think it’s presumptuous of you to say that because you didn’t feel unsafe that everyone should feel the same? I don’t want everyone to carry, I want those who meet the qualifications and want to carry to carry. I don’t presume to know what’s best for everyone.

    “This was because the “danger” of these places was an overrated issue raised by the media. The crime rate has fallen consistently in the last 20 years but above are comments from people who believe their weapons will save them from death at the hands of chimeric “savage hordes”. In my opinion those who believe that and whose opinions are modeled by the NRA do no service to your cause.'”

    I agree with every word of that paragraph.

  83. Jason:

    “You said machine guns were illegal, stop, no qualification. ”

    ***********************

    Sorry, Jason I didn’t commit everything I know to one blog post. I thought I could use some practical shorthand but when one deals with an absolutist such as yourself, one should know better.

    In any event, I’m happy to know you can fit everything you know in a few paragraphs.

  84. Bob Kauten:

    “I know that my concept of a decent society scares you. Pretty much everything does.”

    There you go with the long-distance psychoanalysis again. Care to answer any of the questions I asked?

  85. And I’m the one whining. The funny thing about denying you were wrong in the face of obvious proof to the contrary is that it makes you look far worse than merely being wrong.

    Your insults are going in the “Jerkstore” direction (Seinfeld reference). And what the hell, I’ll throw it out there again, what need is there to ban a legal product that is rarely used to kill anyone?

  86. Oh, no! Do I now have to fear being eaten? Bob Kauten will have a field day!

    Seriously, I would suggest sauerkraut, but people sometimes disagree with me.

  87. porkchop:

    Advice taken, I will also add an apple.

    Are you better pan fried, placed on the bbq with some mesquite or broiled?

  88. porkchop:

    also a note of thanks for saving me the time of responding to BTK.

    I always do so enjoy those manhood jabs. Most of the time they come from “men” wearing bow ties. No, not all men who wear bow ties are “men” but “men” do seem to prefer white wine, spinach souffle, miniature poodles and L M Alcott.

    Granted there are some very fine whites out there, I can think of a couple which I have roundly enjoyed, and spinach is one of my favorite vegetables but I draw the line at miniature poodles [a standard poodle is a fine animal] and Little Women as a good read.

  89. Bron,

    Personally, I prefer IPA’s to wine; one of my daughters works for a distillery, though, so I am able to obtain a discount on whiskey. My current dog is a Tibetan mastiff. My doctor says I should eat more vegetables; my vegetarian daughter agrees. These days I read a lot of plays . . . Sophocles, Aeschylus, Shakespeare, Gerhart Hauptman . . ., although a couple months ago, I finished both volumes of Democracy in America (a bit hard to chew, like a dry, broiled pork chop, in fact, and not at all kind in its assessment of Americans). I do know how to tie a bow tie.

    I don’t know if I am manly enough to meet the tough standards here, though.

  90. Porkchop:

    these people are pretty decent, you and Otteray Scribe would probably get on really well. He is a progressive who like guns and shoots. I dont know what your philosophy is but most here are pro-civil liberties although the economics tends toward the left side of the spectrum.

    It is actually a pretty interesting site and mespo would probably welcome someone who enjoys the classices, if you can write and read latin, he will be putty in your hands.

  91. I read this site a lot, but comment rarely. Lack of facts and legal research sort of annoys me. (I’m a retired federal government attorney.)

    I don’t read Latin, unfortunately. I am limited to pretty decent German, some Mandarin Chinese, and a little Danish — maybe not the ideal combination. I used to be able to speak a little modern Greek, though, if that would help.

  92. “No, not all men who wear bow ties are “men” but “men” do seem to prefer white wine, spinach souffle, miniature poodles and L M Alcott.”

    Bron,

    Stereotype much. I prefer white wine; hate bowties, love spinach and would never read Alcott. As for Miniature poodles I love them, but then I love Lhasa Apsos, Yorkies and Shitzus too. Has a Lhasa Apso in the 70’s bravest dog I ever had pound for pound, except for the pit bull I raised from a puppy in my teens. Most people I’ve known have considered me a “manly man”, but then I do love Broadway Musicals, Judy Garland and I cry at movies.

    Jason,

    I owe you a reply for your very thoughtful comment and I will get to it. I can’t do so now because I have to cook dinner for my wife, probably quiche.

  93. MIke,

    I believe that Bron was being facetious — I took it that way.

    In any event, I think that Bron would characterize you as a man, not a “man”; the only “man” in question would have been Bob Kauten.

  94. Mike Spindell:

    I stereotype all the time. Dont you? Germans love sausage and are prone to being authoritarian. PhD’s are absent minded, etc. Doesnt it allow you to place people in various categories? Everyone I know who works with the disabled say that they worry about a quarter inch and I do.

    Of course there are always exceptions to rules.

    Stereotyping isnt necessarily a bad thing.

    “but then I do love Broadway Musicals, Judy Garland and I cry at movies.”

    And so do I. Although not having lived in New York I have to get my Rogers and Hammerstein on the TV.

    My uncle was the manliest man I ever met and he wore a bowtie. But I think he did that because a regular tie would hang down into a dog or cat’s guts during surgery. He didnt wear scrubs like they do now.

  95. porkchop:

    I was giving Bob some hooey.

    I hope you dont mind that I sometimes cry at movies [I still cry when Old Yeller dies] and like Oklahoma. :)

  96. Bron —

    You have all the sensitivity that my wife says I lack. Perhaps I can improve myself in her eyes by learning from you.

    By the way, how frequently do you watch “Old Yeller”?

    I felt a tear welling up when I first saw it in the local theater in 1957, but I was only 6 and not considered fully responsible for controlling myself at the time, even by Scandinavian immigrant standards.

  97. : Porkchop,

    I KNOW Bron was being facetious,we go back aways here. I’m a tolerent type of guy, but Jason’s seeing Wicked for the Third time is suspicious, as are pugs. While I’ve owned dogs, I was mainly into Cats. Pull up a chair. I think you two guys will fit in well here because you’re fun and argue your case well. Also Mespo needs to have more people around who read the classics. I’m mostly into SciFi, Fantasy and violent melodrama. BTW I actually don’t drink much wine, more Tequila, or Mezcal when I can get it. Which is pretty manly in and of itself. :)

  98. Bron,

    I never liked Oklahoma, but I adore South Pacific and Guys&Dolls. Les Miz is my alltime favorote though and I did see it on Broadway. The other favorite, as uou might guess is Fiddler on the Roof. Saw that 3 different times on Broadway. Every Channukkah my wife and I would take our daughters to see a Broadway Show. Tickets were too damn expensive to go more than once a year.

  99. porkchop:

    “I finished both volumes of Democracy in America (a bit hard to chew, like a dry, broiled pork chop, in fact, and not at all kind in its assessment of Americans). ”

    *********************

    I wouldn’t say that. I ‘d say that de Tocqueville holds a clear prism up to America. It’s just that his gcrystal was ground in the Bourbon Court. Thus even as he insightfully exposes our biases he equally reveals his own.

    The whole life of an American is passed like a game of chance, a revolutionary crisis, or a battle.
    ~Alexis de Tocqueville

    That’s about right.

  100. Mike,
    I also loved Wicked when my wife and I saw it in Chicago. Les Mis was fantastic and this weekend we are seeing the Book of Mormon. I am looking forward to that one as well. I never say Fiddler on the stage, but I did enjoy the movie version.

  101. Porkchop:

    I saw Old Yeller when my children were between 8 and 12, about a dozen years ago. I teared up when he got shot. I am not sure I am sensitive enough to teach you, I was raised by Germans from the midwest. Although my grandmother was part French and lived with us.

    I have always been conflicted, I dont know when to kiss a$$ or kick a$$.

    I will try though.

    Cook dinner at least twice per month, this is a chance to show off your BBQ skills.
    Bring her flowers 3-4 times per year, flowering cacti are pretty cool.
    Do the dishes once a week, make sure you use disposable plates, cups and cutlery.
    Take her out to dinner once a week to your favorite steak house.
    Have a date at least once a month so you can watch the newest action flick.
    Buy her little knick knacks every couple of months and tell her you were just thinking of her and thought she would enjoy it. I prefer buying from Frederick’s of Hollywood or Victoria’s Secret.

    I hope that helps.

  102. Raff,

    I would love to see Wicked and the Book of Mormon. My illness and living in Florida prevented both. but I’ll find a way. What I found interesting about Les Mis the movie, that if you remember I wrote about was that through film you could actually see the poverty, thus the anger of the people, which was so hard to depict on stage. The reverse was true with Fiddler, at least for Jews I think. Both sides of my grandparents were immigrants from “Stetl’s” in Eastern Europe. As a boy, their descriptions of life there and the process of immigration to America, were horrific. The “Stetl” in the Fiddler movie was perhaps to sterilized for the screen, with the exception of the pogrom shown.
    On stage the representational detail was by necessity stylized and so you could concentrate on the messages in the words and lyrics. As for the actual music, for a Jew of my era the melodies/instrumentation were nostalgic and transporting. I imagine this is true of any ethnicity that has a rich musical history, I know OS is deeply moved by the sounds of his ancestry, for instance.

  103. Porkchop,

    Bron’s laundry list of romanticism for you I think represents the height of his facetiousness, or his wife is a very unusual woman. Nothing says “My love for you is but a roll in the hay” more than “I prefer buying from Frederick’s of Hollywood or Victoria’s Secret.” My experience is that women prefer to buy their own lingerie, but as a reward to you for treating her well, not as a present from you to because you got your hopes “up” for the evening.

  104. “My wife is a really great lady.”

    Bron,

    I am absolutely convinced of the truth of your statement above….since she lives with you.

    ‘Mike just doesnt understand the soul of a Northern European.’

    I’m Hungarian by pre-American origin and my former blond hair and current blue eyes attest to the fact that somewhere in my ancestry some of that hot Hungarian blood intermingled with my mid-Eastern roots. Northern European men are far too stoic and self-centered to know how to be romantic. Which only goes to show that your wife has overlooked those traits, to genuinely love you for who you are, despite your failings.

  105. I was half kidding. I did not see Wicked last night, but I have seen the damned thing twice because my wife loves musical theater and does a lot of volunteer work for the theater district here. Though I can’t stand the music for the most part, I have to admit that it is interesting to see something that complicated come together without a hitch. The only musicals I’ve enjoyed were The Producers and Spamalot (both because they were funny rather than having music I enjoy) and Chicago, whose music actually works for me. Sadly, the touring company didn’t have very strong vocalists. Looking forward to The Book of Mormon this year.

  106. Mike,
    I have often thought that Jung was right. When my youngest daughter was only six years old, she announced she wanted to take music lessons, and most specifically wanted to learn to play the pipes. I asked her why the pipes. She replied, “Because when I hear the pipes it makes my heart beat.”

    From the mind of a six year old.

  107. OS,

    I’m not sure Jung had it completely right, but he went in the right direction. Since I’ve been a child not only was I moved by “Jewish” music on a deep emotional level, but also by Celtic music and its derivative bluegrass. Perhaps that’s why I had blonde hair and blue eyes. The “pipes” give me chills.

  108. Bron:

    “Mike just doesn’t understand the soul of a Northern European. :)

    Those things might work if my wife were a Northern European, or a European, or related to a European. For some unfathomable reason, though, she prefers kimchee over lutefisk.

    Mike:

    “Northern European men are far too stoic and self-centered to know how to be romantic.”

    Well, stoic, anyway.

    FYI, I got her a box of Hungarian chocolate truffles from Krön Chocolatier for Valentine’s day. Does that count?

  109. “FYI, I got her a box of Hungarian chocolate truffles from Krön Chocolatier for Valentine’s day. Does that count?”

    Porkchop,

    Perfect. Beats hell out of bringing her a flowering cacti.

  110. Porkchop:

    it doesnt sound like you need my advice in the romance department.

    kimchee or lutefisk, what kind of choice is that? Is that a Morton’s Fork or a Sophie’s Choice.

    “An article in the Seattle Post-Intelligencer earlier this week reported that Seattle’s Norwegian community is in mourning this holiday season because for the first time in decades, not a single Seattle restaurant will offer lutefisk. The article quoted Kathleen Knudsen, editor of the Western Viking newspaper, as saying, “The Norwegian community is in a state of shock.””

  111. “kimchee or lutefisk, what kind of choice is that? Is that a Morton’s Fork or a Sophie’s Choice.”

    Well, I eat both. Not at the same time, though. I’m not quite that stoic.

  112. No. We go to the Korean store for the kimchee, and we go to the Norwegian store for . . . nah, it’s not that easy.

  113. Porkchop:

    I suggest wrapping the lutefisk in the kimchee and then slicing potatoes very thin and wrapping them around the outside and then cooking in the oven until the potatoes are golden brown on the outside.

    I once had halibut cooked with spinach like that, it was great.

  114. Jason,

    I was thinking of a long response but upon reading you again what occurs to me is that you believed that in my hyperbole, (when groups like the NRA get hyperbolic I return fire so to speak) that I felt this way about all people who support the right to bear arms. That’s simply not the case and I point out Otteray Scribe for whom I have sincere respect and affection and whose views seem to differ little from your views.

    “And don’t you think it’s presumptuous of you to say that because you didn’t feel unsafe that everyone should feel the same?”

    If I was “saying” that I would be presumptuous, but that was not what I was saying. I made that clear in the paragraph you quoted and you agreed with.

  115. How Many People Have Been Killed by Guns Since Newtown?

    Slate partners with @GunDeaths for an interactive, crowdsourced tally of the toll firearms have taken since Dec. 14.

    By Chris Kirk and Dan Kois

    Posted Thursday, Feb. 21, 2013, at 9:00 AM

    Excerpt:

    The answer to the simple question in that headline is surprisingly hard to come by. So Slate and the Twitter feed @GunDeaths are collecting data for our crowdsourced interactive. This data is necessarily incomplete. But the more people who are paying attention, the better the data will be. You can help us draw a more complete picture of gun violence in America. If you know about a gun death in your community that isn’t represented here, please tweet @GunDeaths with a citation. (If you’re not on Twitter, you can email slatedata@gmail.com.) And if you’d like to use this data yourself for your own projects, it’s open. You can download it here.

    http://www.slate.com/articles/news_and_politics/crime/2012/12/gun_death_tally_every_american_gun_death_since_newtown_sandy_hook_shooting.html

  116. ap,
    thanks for the link! I included some of the data listed in this link in my article. It is amazing that over 1800 people have been killed with a gun, just since Newtown.

  117. ap,
    That is an astounding and sad number. Remember, it is part of our “culture” allegedly so we can’t do anything substantive about our gun problem.

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