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The President's talk las tnight was his best speech to date. Moving, heartfelt and compelling. Now is the time to curb the gun culture and its associated violence. Its time to evaluate the context and time of the drafting and adoption of the second amendment. We certainly do not need to arm citizens to defend the country as we did 250 years ago. We should still have access to sporting long guns, but not high capacity semi-automatic weapons. Certainly sensible restraint on hand guns which, in recent days have shown themselves to be of greater danger to the homeowner than a resource for self protection. Likewise the concealed carry law challenges the safety of nearly everyone. Guns in the hands of most of us are simply unsafe. The police and the military yes but you and me, not so much.
I'm a gun owner. I hunt and target shoot. I have a number of long guns and a revolver. I've also been an NRA member. I think we need to take a good hard look at all the factors that may have contributed to these tragedies and be willing to go where the facts take us. I don't see a need for people to own assault-type weapons, armor piercing ammunition, and magazines that hold 30+ rounds. Limiting access to these types of weapons, however, is just the beginning. If we REALLY want to make a difference, we also better take a long, hard look at our entertainment industry (movies and television) and the role that violent video games play in this. If we're truly serious about putting an end to these types of tragedies, EVERYTHING needs to be on the table. Fixing this won't be popular because more than just gun owners will be, and should be, directly affected.
Mostly agree with bombo52's post.. other than the entertainment industry aspect. Numerous studies have taken place and find no correlation. There are other nations that are exposed to the same video games, movies, etc... who don't have the type of violent incidents that we have.
What needs to be pointed out is that polls consistently show NRA members are overwhelmingly in favor of the restrictions listed above. The NRA leaders, however, are not. When you consider two thirds of the country are not gun owners, and 70% plus percent of the remaining third support those restrictions, there is a small minority of people fighting change.
The problem with Senator Feinstein's claim that she will introduce a bill is that she knows it will be filibustered by Republicans. And since she's on record to be lukewarm towards filibuster reform.. she knows it's not going anywhere. Or at least she's not doing all she could to advance her proposed legislation.
At least you could say it's progress that someone will at least pose as a gun rights reformer.. for the past two decades.. nobody in Congress would touch the subject. But we need more than posing...
@csjohn1 - While there is likely a consensus on restricting assault rifles, even though that's a political description rather than a technical one, and large capacity clips and magazines, where these agreements typically falter is at the point where overreach begins. Suddenly conceal carry enters the discussion and handguns get added to the mix of potentially banned weapons even though they're unrelated topics. People try to reintroduce their historical interpretations about what the 2nd Amendment means, something which the courts have already settled. Unable to define the specific weapons they want to ban or restrict they try to lump in everything they can think of until the definition of an assault weapon is something which looks scary to non-gun owners. They dismiss the 60 - 100 million gun owners who don't shoot children nor anyone else and are just as interested as they are in solving this problem. Since some people dislike all weapons they get it into their heads that their mission is to eliminate all guns from the US, something which will not happen. At that point the conversation ends badly, fearful people buy even more guns and the cycle continues. What's needed is polite level-headed conversation with all parties about the subject and a discussion and enactment of laws and guidelines which try to address the problem without giving the appearance of devolving into a gun grab which will end up further polarizing everyone and will result in no solutions. That may very well expand into violence in entertainment and the need for better mental assessment. When that happens I and many other gun owners will eagerly support it.
Obama: "Are we prepared to say that such violence visited on our children year after year after year is somehow the price of our freedom?"---------------------------------Living in a free society does carry a price but the alternative is even more unthinkable than what happened in Connecticut. Anybody who is ready to gut the 2nd amendment better be prepared to watch the entire Bill of Rights fade away. Once one of them gets swept into the dustbin of history, the others won't be far behind.
I think there needs to be a ban or at least more limits on machine guns, the kind that can spray continuous bullets and also extended clips. These are weapons for war, not self defense. People say that a ban does nothing, because you can modify other weapons to do the same thing. But a ban would definitely decrease the amount of people owning them. And it may only prevent one massacre, while not impacting anyone's right to own handguns. I also think the other big question is mental health resources in this country. We are way under-served as a country, since the Reagan era. We closed state mental hospitals and kicked people out of the street. They say that people with mental problems have to break a law and be put in jail before qualifying for public mental health services. The vast majority of these folks are non-violent, but that doesn't mean they shouldn't be able to get help. Plus there would be an overall positive impact for society. Way more cost-effective than using the prison system. I believe that the big push to cut all government is short-sighted and in this case creates a huge need gap.
Instead of a long debate on gun control and the design of a fire arm, let's have a serious discussion on mental illness and the lack of funding to help the people in need. Take a hard look at all of the mass killings of late and all are attributed to mental illness.
I'm skeptical about the big focus about violence in media. There is no question about over the top video games and TV and movies with military themes or horror movies with ghastly violence. I just don't know how you draw the line with these. I don't care for any horror movies. I really enjoy James Bond movies, which has plenty of violence. I would never let my kids play with shooting games. Not until they are maybe 16 or older. Even then would monitor what they are doing and talk to them or restrict what they are playing or watching.
Bring down the NRA|
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