April 18th, 2007

Virginia Tech and Gun Control


photo credit: Nonsense Pop

The recent tragedy at Virginia Tech has brought the gun control issue back into the spotlight it ever so often enjoys.

Gun control advocates naturally use such tragedies to their political advantage in an effort to enforce further gun control, citing the weapon as the cause of the crime. The media helps the cause, pointing out to the viewer simple statements and facts that aim to draw a correlation between the weapon and the cause.

Anybody who has played the game “Clue” (or, likewise, anybody who has a clue) knows that the weapon is the tool, not the cause.

Gun control advocates seek to shift responsibility and remove accountability. They blame violent video games, rap music, movies, cultural upbringing, or whatever other external influencing factor with which they can make the least amount of connection.

Here’s a simple fact that such lobbyists ignore: the criminal is accountable for his or her own actions.

It’s not that hard to understand. Take a few breaths to clear your mind, and re-read the sentence. The key word is “accountable”.

Will playing violent video games negatively affect a person? Of course. Will pornography? Yes. Will suggestive lyrics and horrying movie scenes do damage? You bet. But the fact remains that the individual choosing to consume this media and expose him/herself to such things is accountable for such actions.

One such example of blaming the influence rather than the individual occurred after the Columbine massacre. Then-Judiciary Committee Chair Henry Hyde (R-Ill.) commented as follows:

“Congress must address the cultural influences that cause young people to become violent,” declared Hyde, blaming movies, music, and video games. “Let us examine what it is in the psyches of these young people that made them want to kill.” (emphasis added)

Enforcing further gun control is not an option. In support of such a bold declaration, we have a statement made last year by Virginia Tech spokesman Larry Hincker. Hincker, commenting on the defeat of a bill that would have allowed Virginia Tech students to carry concealed weapons on campus, said the following:

I’m sure the university community is appreciative of the General Assembly’s actions because this will help parents, students, faculty and visitors feel safe on our campus.

You and I are sure about completely different things, Mr. Hincker. I myself am sure that had that bill passed, there might have been a student armed with a concealed weapon amidst the victimized masses who could have prevented a large number of deaths this week. I am sure that nobody “[felt] safe on [your] campus” without any method of defending themselves against a murdering lunatic. I am sure that in hindsight, Mr. Hincker, you are rethinking your statement of one year ago. At least, I hope so.

Proponents of further gun control would have to use their twisted logic to impose more restrictive laws on automobiles, knives, matches, and a plethora of other things that have killed people. The fact remains that almost anything can be used as a weapon, and anybody determined to use a gun can obtain one despite whatever legislation may be in place.

The adage “when guns are outlawed, only outlaws will have guns” holds true despite claims to the contrary. Outlawing and restricting guns will only provide more unarmed, defenseless fodder for would-be murderers looking to cause as much death as possible.

Brother Brigham summed it up best:

As for this people fostering to themselves that the day has come for them to sell their guns and ammunition to their enemies, and sit down to sleep in peace, they will find themselves deceived and before they know, they will sleep until they are slain. They have got to carry weapons with them, to be ready to send their enemy to hell cross lots, whether they be Lamanites or mobs who may come to take their lives, or destroy their property. We must be prepared that they dare not come to us in a hostile manner without being assured they will meet a vigorous resistance and ten to one they will meet their grave. (Brigham Young, via Quoty)

74 Responses to “Virginia Tech and Gun Control”

  1. Dan
    April 18, 2007 at 7:16 am #

    Connor,

    I’m very disappointed in you. You couldn’t have said more partisan things than you have in this post here. You talk about “gun control advocates” taking advantage of this tragedy to talk about limiting access to guns, but completely disregard the numerous “gun advocates” who have also pounced quite strongly upon this very same topic.

    Take comments on my post on my blog about the murderer. See the very first comment:

    ya know if the students were able to carry a GUN maybe ,just mabe someone cuold have stopped this before it got this bad.

    Nowhere in my post did I talk about guns and all, but the very first commentator brings up how, if VTech campus allowed guns, this wouldn’t’ve happened.

    Maybe I expected too much out of you, but this is a disappointment.

  2. Connor
    April 18, 2007 at 7:39 am #

    Dan,

    Gun control advocates come in various shades of gray. Some want to ban them outright, others want age restrictions, others want location-based restrictions, but they all have one thing in common: they favor further restrictions on guns.

    Such a course of action, as I pointed out, sidesteps the core of the problem, that being the individual.

    Partisan? Hardly.

    Additionally, I’m confused as to how the comment on your post has anything to do with the point of my post, or your intended point that my words are partisan in nature… You lost me at “Connor,”. :)

  3. Dan
    April 18, 2007 at 7:48 am #

    Connor,

    You’re not even answering my comment. I say that you completely disregard all those out there who don’t want restrictions on guns and how they TOO have taken advantage of this situation to claim that if someone there had guns, they would have gotten the guy.

    Why are you not critical of them for taking partisan advantage of such a tragic situation to score political points themselves? Why are you only focusing on “gun control advocates?”

  4. Connor
    April 18, 2007 at 8:52 am #

    Dan,

    It’s hard to answer a comment whose main point was to convey disappointment.

    Why are you not critical of them for taking partisan advantage of such a tragic situation to score political points themselves? Why are you only focusing on “gun control advocates?”

    Could it possibly be because lives could have been saved had the Virginia bill been passed, allowing for concealed carry?

    I’m only focusing on gun control advocates because, well, I’m against gun control. Citing the example of the Virginia bill that would have allowed for concealed carry on campus clearly shows a case of when gun control resulted in great loss of life that might have otherwise been lessened if not prevented entirely. We’re left with mere speculation as to what might have happened, yet one only need to look at the Trolley Square tragedy to see the importance of having somebody with a weapon willing to use it in defense of him/herself and those around who are otherwise sitting ducks.

    There is inherently nothing wrong with using an event—be it a tragedy or otherwise—to give credence to a political agenda. Concrete examples often serve to vindicate a certain side of the argument. As I side with those who favor concealed carry and lessened gun control, I see this tragedy as one example of where less gun control would have been a beneficial thing.

  5. Meg
    April 18, 2007 at 8:54 am #

    But what can be said for the fact that these sorts of things just DON’T happen in countries where people don’t have guns. Gun related violence is extraordinarily high in the U.S. and the plain and simple truth is that it is much lower in places that don’t allow their citizens to carry weapons.

    I am a gun control advocate, and proudly, and while I think the criminal is always accountable, there is plenty that can be done to prevent crime, and part of that is taking weapons out of the hands of people that might misuse them.

    Sorry, I just fail to find anything remotely convincement or even thought-provoking here.

  6. John
    April 18, 2007 at 9:10 am #

    @Dan,

    Um, I think *you* are the one bringing in partisan issues here.

    @Meg,

    I think it’s ironic that you thought this topic not-thought-provoking enough… to come and comment on the issue.

    @Connor,

    I totally agree. I think its a little scary to think that everyone could have a gun on them, but I think its scarier to levy perfect trust in the government. Once a government has succeeded in disarming its citizens, its a situation ripe for corruption and tyranny.

  7. Connor
    April 18, 2007 at 9:15 am #

    Meg,

    Parroting the idea that countries with strict gun control see less crime per capita is a tiresome argument that ignores the crux of the issue. Not everybody agrees with you.

    Thomas Jefferson once said:

    The strongest reason for the people to retain the right to keep and bear arms is, as a last resort, to protect themselves against tyranny in their government.

    Take away the citizen’s right to bear arms (thank God for the second amendment, even though many seem to interpret it in warped, convoluted ways) and you have the way paved for tyranny. Gun control was high up on the priority list for Hitler, Mao, Stalin, and more recently, the military sent in to New Orleans after Katrina. Every citizen is entitled to defend their lives and property.

    Ron Paul notes:

    Domestically, the gun control movement has lost momentum in recent years. The Democratic Party has been conspicuously silent on the issue in recent elections because they know it’s a political loser. In the midst of declining public support for new gun laws, more and more states have adopted concealed-carry programs. The September 11th terrorist attacks and last summer’s hurricanes only made matters worse for gun control proponents, as millions of Americans were starkly reminded that we cannot rely on government to protect us from criminals.

    Yes, Meg, there is plenty that can be done to prevent crime. But we need to change the people, not the items they choose.

  8. Connor
    April 18, 2007 at 9:23 am #

    John,

    I think its a little scary to think that everyone could have a gun on them, but I think its scarier to levy perfect trust in the government.

    Agreed. It sure would be quite, um, interesting if everybody was packing heat, but if somebody is willing to go through all the legal hoopla and training in order to receive a concealed weapons permit, I think that’s the type of person that more often than not can be trusted to use the weapon responsibly.

    There are always exceptions to the norm, but when that exception uses his weapon to inflict harm, the armed norm will be there to stop him. :)

  9. Dan
    April 18, 2007 at 9:34 am #

    Connor,

    Could it possibly be because lives could have been saved had the Virginia bill been passed, allowing for concealed carry?

    Conversely, the same question can be asked by gun control advocates you deride: “Could it possibly be because lives could have been saved had a Virginia bill been passed that would have stopped this lunatic from buying a gun in the first place?”

    The reason I’m chiding you, Connor, is because of this statement:

    Gun control advocates naturally use such tragedies to their political advantage in an effort to enforce further gun control, citing the weapon as the cause of the crime.

    That’s the crux of my disappointment in your post. Those pressing for laxer gun control laws are ALSO “naturally using such tragedies to their political advantage in an effort to” further loosen gun control laws, citing the absurd notion that had everybody been armed, fewer would have died.

    I have no problem with you being for or against gun control. That’s not my concern. But if you are going to state something like that, wherein you take swipes at one side, you must also show that gun advocates are doing the very same thing. But then again, that’s exactly what this post of yours does, Connor: it takes advantage of a tragedy for your own political advantage in an effort to further erode gun control laws.

  10. Dan
    April 18, 2007 at 9:34 am #

    John,

    @Dan,

    Um, I think *you* are the one bringing in partisan issues here.

    Um, no.

  11. Wade
    April 18, 2007 at 9:38 am #

    Meg,

    I think you need a reality check! Will you please provide some kind of reference for your assertion that violence is much lower in countries where guns are banned. I bet you didn’t know that Vermont (which has no restrictions on concealed carry) has one of the lowest crimes rates in the U.S. Hmmm, I wonder why? Perhaps it’s because would be criminals know the chances are high that they will be “stopped” if they try anything. I would suggest you look at the crime rates of states/communities in which it is lawful to carry a firearm in public. Also, you may be interested in the research done by John Lott. If you’re an honest person that is.

    Connor,

    While I agree with your main point, I think you may be taking the issue too far. As I know you are one who likes to read, I highly recommend “The Closing of the American Mind” by Bloom. The cultural influences are not as disassociated from crime as you would like them to be (and I’m talking about cause and effect here). But for the cultural influences, many people wouldn’t even think of doing what they do. Thus, it actually is a factor in causation here. It’s not the final factor (free-will), but it plays a bigger role than you acknowledge.

  12. Connor
    April 18, 2007 at 9:49 am #

    Conversely, the same question can be asked by gun control advocates you deride: “Could it possibly be because lives could have been saved had a Virginia bill been passed that would have stopped this lunatic from buying a gun in the first place?”

    Ah, this is where the argument turns… absurd?

    If you subscribe to that mentality, you favor complete gun control which takes weapons of self-defense out of the hands of law-abiding citizens who end up being defenseless targets of maniacs who will be able to obtain the weapons despite any laws put in place.

    Again, gun control only serves to take weapons away from law-abiding citizens. Thus following the law, they are compelled to give up their main method of self-defense. Those who don’t obey the law anyways, will likewise find methods of getting around the gun control laws, and find easy prey for their wild, wicked outbursts.

    The reason I’m chiding you, Connor, is because of this statement:

    Gun control advocates naturally use such tragedies to their political advantage in an effort to enforce further gun control, citing the weapon as the cause of the crime.

    That’s the crux of my disappointment in your post.

    The statement is true, despite your disappointment, Dan. Sure, the opposite can be true. As I said in a previous comment, events/tragedies can be used on both sides of the political aisle to vindicate and/or further a cause. The reason I made that statement, and then followed it up with examples of gun control incongruity, is because I feel the gun control advocates are, well, very misguided. :)

    But then again, that’s exactly what this post of yours does, Connor: it takes advantage of a tragedy for your own political advantage in an effort to further erode gun control laws.

    Oh, please. What a silly statement! I’m not using the tragedy to push any legislation or change the law. I am using it to point out the ridiculousness of what I consider to be hurting the problem: more gun control. That’s a far cry from seeking to gain a “political advantage” as you think I’m doing here.

  13. Dan
    April 18, 2007 at 9:56 am #

    Connor,

    I’ve not stated anywhere about my personal feelings on gun control. Please don’t assume anything based on our discussion here. I’m chiding you for taking political swipes at gun control advocates when you yourself are taking advantage of the tragedy to press your own political viewpoint. I think that is wrong.

    As far as my own views on gun control, they will remain just that until this incident passes, so that my judgment is not based on irrational emotional feelings based on what happened. A depressed, mean, angry loner cracked, bought himself two guns and went ballistic on his classmates and teachers. That is really sad. We should not be taking advantage of this tragedy to highlight our stated political stances. Because the moment we do, it comes across as “see, we told you so, if this or that had happened instead, then maybe the outcome would have been different.” That second guessing, the Monday quarterbacking is shameful, frankly. We’ll never know what “could have happened” either way. All we know is what ACTUALLY happened. And it is horrible.

  14. Michael L. McKee
    April 18, 2007 at 10:09 am #

    I am always amused by the mindless chatter of those who favor CONTROL over their lives in the hope that the Nanny State will be able to protect them from the many evils which they perceive in their surroundings. The adversary must be having a wonderful time laughing at the foolishness of those who continue to find redeeming value in his methodology for eliminating the very fears which he authors. Proponents of any type of control in a free society deserve to have their freedom expunged, and be summarily dispatched to one of those countries which seem to have such appealing niceties about which they cackle. Of course, they will proclaim their perceived right to dissent over anything and everything which does not allow them the opportunity to bask in the glow of their understanding of the Constitution of the United States of America. If they truly knew and understood anything at all about the Constitution, they would never permit themselves to even suggest that any form of control be considered, and they would be willing to die to protect themselves and their fellow Americans from any tyrannical attempt to disarm them.

    Those in the United States who support the rights inherent within the 2nd. Amendment far outnumber those who would prefer to be controlled. However, the corrupt so-called Main-stream Media would have us believe otherwise. They would never permit their dupes and lemmings to hear about stories such as the one you can find at NewsWithViews.com written by Joel Turtel which is one of many evidential case studies showing that an armed citizenry is the main catalyst for reducing crimes, and saving lives.

    Until Christ returns to the earth, the kinds of things which happened at Virginia Tech and other places is going to happen with even more frequency unless the people arm and protect their own lives and property.

    To those who persist in proclaiming how other countries have such a wonderful society free of crime, I suggest you relocate to one of them. Perhaps, after a while, you will recognize that what you left is the only land upon the earth which will be the base of operations for Christ other than the land of His birth. In the mean time, take a course in gun safety, arm yourself, and forget yourself.

  15. Jeff
    April 18, 2007 at 10:43 am #

    yet one only need to look at the Trolley Square tragedy to see the importance of having somebody with a weapon willing to use it in defense of him/herself and those around who are otherwise sitting ducks.

    While I believe we all have the right to carry a weapon if we go through the proper training, I believe this statement hurts your argument. The person with a weapon in Trolley Square was not a concealed carry permit holder; he was an off-duty police officer. The situation could have been vastly different if the person hadn’t had the law enforcement training that he had. Just having a gun and a permit doesn’t give someone the courage and the know-how to resolve a terrible situation like that. To conflate an off-duty policy officer with an average-Joe citizen with a concealed carry permit doesn’t help your cause at all.

    Also, I agree with Dan that it’s not time to make political statements about this tragedy yet. We don’t even know all the facts yet, and everyone’s already assigning blame to various entities. Why don’t we wait until we have the whole story?

  16. Connor
    April 18, 2007 at 11:03 am #

    The person with a weapon in Trolley Square was not a concealed carry permit holder; he was an off-duty police officer.

    Indeed. But he still had a concealed weapon. Tom-ay-to, tom-ah-to.

    The situation could have been vastly different if the person hadn’t had the law enforcement training that he had.

    I wholeheartedly agree. Had I been there and been packing, I’m not sure how I would have reacted or responded. That just shows the value of practice and receiving proper training, something I think we should all do. In fact, the “well regulated” portion of the second amendment in those days meant “well prepared”. As Michael Badnarik notes,

    Every man was expected to have a rifle, one pound of gun powder, and sixteen balls for his weapon. He was also expected to be ready to USE that rifle within sixty seconds of the alarm being sounded. Hence the term “minute man.”

    Imagine the good a well-trained gun-toting individual could have done this week. It’s worth pondering. That reminds me that I need to get out to the shooting range this week for some practice. :)

  17. John
    April 18, 2007 at 11:20 am #

    Dan & Jeff

    So… how long should we wait after a tragedy to inspect government policies regarding the issue? I mean, I think it is perfectly natural to want to revamp the system. The local news itself is awash with stories about how the U and the Y are checking and re-checking their own security policies.

    Why not talk about gun control now?

  18. Dan
    April 18, 2007 at 11:29 am #

    John,

    Because we don’t know everything about the situation yet. Take for instance, some stories that ran yesterday and Monday falsely claiming Cho was Chinese, or Pakistani. What if we just let it be at that and go from there? Well, we’d be following a lie.

    Patience, John. We have all the time in the world to talk about how to better improve college security, but first and foremost, let’s get all the facts in the open.

    I’m frankly really curious about Cho’s parents. A young man like this doesn’t just become what he was without something dealing with his parents.

  19. John
    April 18, 2007 at 11:39 am #

    Dan,

    I don’t think many are confused as to whether or not guns were involved. We don’t have to know “everything” in order to discuss that right now.

    We’re not talking about race, we’re not talking about what political agenda he had, we’re not even talking about his parents,we’re talking about how gun should be treated in public settings.

    We’re not jumping the gun here (pun intended) because we already know what the murder weapon was. More dialog about this now could help prevent more losses in the future.

    Please let us know where we’re speculating if you think that’s the case.

  20. John
    April 18, 2007 at 11:40 am #

    Oh, and by the way, I imagine the staff in Virginia though they had “all the time in the world” to talk about public security last week.

    I think its great to have this subject reviewed.

  21. Dan
    April 18, 2007 at 11:45 am #

    If we are to talk about “gun control” specifically, in this case, then yes, important factors such as what kind of person Cho was have to be looked at. See, this is the trouble with jumping the gun (if I may borrow your pun). The matter is not one of just more stringent gun laws, because as Connor so desperately fears, it will curtail “good citizens” from getting and owning their own guns. No, if we are to do any kind of “gun control” it should be to stop individuals like Mr. Cho, and not just some weak blanket law. Hence why it isn’t that important to know that a gun was used, but WHO used the gun and WHY are far more important. Those kinds of answers come with time, and not immediately.

    No one doubts that he purchased two guns and used them to kill 32 people. What we want to know is WHO is he and WHY did he do it. Those answers will help us better curtail such like-minded individuals from procuring guns in the future, without harming the regular law-abiding citizen from his Constitutional right to own a gun.

    Are you seeing the reasoning behind waiting until all the facts are out?

  22. Michael L. McKee
    April 18, 2007 at 12:46 pm #

    I do not speak for Connor about his perceived “fears” concerning gun control, but I’ll say this for myself; I do not fear anything about anyone controlling my guns, but those who have designs on removing them from my grasp while there is still a Constitution with the intended power to guarantee my right and duty to be armed and protect my family and property, perhaps, should be fearful of my response. The left in this country does not give a damn about those who were killed by a poor soul who has been brainwashed into believing he was doing the right thing. They care only about the power and control they desire to have over the people in the United States, and throughout the earth.

    It is sheer fantasy to believe the media will portray this in a logical manner since it does not fit their agenda to keep the people fearful so we will be clamoring for more government protection. It is the agenda of the left to disarm us incrementally so they will be able to control every aspect of our lives, and anyone who believes otherwise is a fool. I do not intend to spend the remainder of my life under the thumb of a tyrannical government no matter which political party they represent. It is also rather mindless to believe that all of the facts will ever be disseminated to the people through the MSM. The Gun Control crowd took the first shot as they always do when we have a situation such as this and it is because the media are largely controlled by the same socialist NWO adherents.

    We already have all of the facts in that we know a person took the lives of 32 of his fellow men and himself, and the manner in which he chose to do it is not relevant. Anything else we may conclude at this point and beyond will be sheer speculation. That being said, I will be watching vigilantly to keep the wolves away from my door with whatever means I deem necessary including my guns, and the voting booth. I will also stop and pray sincerely for the family members and close associates to those innocents who were in the wrong place at the wrong time.

  23. John
    April 18, 2007 at 12:58 pm #

    No, not really.

    So if we find out he did it on purpose, with complete mental clarity, does that somehow change whether or not *I* can have/use a gun? Does it change my ability to bear arms if he was a raving lunatic?

    I think the dialogue that needs to happen is whether or not the public should be more armed or not. Basically: what do we need to do to stop this from happening again. The who and why of the murderer doesn’t effect that a whole lot.

    Lunatic or premeditated genius, it doesn’t really seem to matter. These people seem to pop up in public places and do a whole lot of damage. I don’t think there is some common political agenda or social ill that these people share.

    Even if they did, the answers to those problems would only be preventative measures: something that won’t really help once a madman is in the building.

  24. Dan
    April 18, 2007 at 1:02 pm #

    Michael McKee,

    The left in this country does not give a damn about those who were killed by a poor soul who has been brainwashed into believing he was doing the right thing.

    I have much to say about this comment, but alas, most of it is not nice, so I won’t say it. I will say that I thought Christian men had better senses about them, but again, I guess I just have too high of a standard for what a Christian man is these days.

  25. Jeff
    April 18, 2007 at 1:03 pm #

    Michael, you scare me a little.

    To Connor, et. al.,

    Can you please recount an actual event where a private citizen with a concealed carry permit saved people by shooting an assailant in any type of similar situation. To say that Trolley Square is a valid comparison doesn’t work for the reasons stated above, but I think that before you all try to make your case purely on speculation, you should offer some type of concrete evidence. Is that too much to ask?

    I’m a fence-sitter on the whole gun control argument, but I do have to say that these types of conversations from the gun crowd don’t sway me that way at all. Give me something concrete to work with.

    Dan,

    I agree with you on why we should wait. Well said.

  26. Connor
    April 18, 2007 at 1:14 pm #

    …you should offer some type of concrete evidence. Is that too much to ask?

    Give me something concrete to work with.

    Here you go. Enjoy.

  27. John
    April 18, 2007 at 1:14 pm #

    Jeff,

    Can you provide an event, or even a speculative argument where an unarmed citizen was able to effectively neutralize an armed assailant? I don’t see how I need to find an instance, where its at least *reasonably* possible that an armed citizen could aid in an emergency.

    Your counter-argument against the officer at Trolley Square is conjecture as well. Fact is, someone was on hand and he was armed. I don’t think you’ll find many that argue that an armed citizen is just as effective as an armed officer… but I really don’t think you’ll find anyone to agree with you that disarming everyone but the criminal is effective.

  28. John
    April 18, 2007 at 1:27 pm #

    Stories where armed citizens helped stop or minimize violence:

    Georgia City Enforces Gun Posession; Crime Rate Drops
    http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-news/1818862/posts

    Woman Kills Armed Attacker
    http://www.sptimes.com/News/081000/TampaBay/Woman_kills_armed_att.shtml

    Shooting at ASL minimized because 2 students were armed:
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Appalachian_School_of_Law_shooting

    I can find more if you wish. It only takes a quick google search.

  29. Dan
    April 18, 2007 at 1:37 pm #

    Jeff,

    The problem you will find here when talking with people like Connor and Mr. McKee, is that they really do not understand that gun control advocates don’t want to remove weapons from the hands of “law abiding citizens”—which we assume men like Connor and Mr. McKee are. Their words and actions are symptoms of the larger issue of trust in government, which is very understandable. I trust my government only as far as I can throw them (which obviously is not very far at all). However, none of the gun control laws that I’ve seen out there harm a regular “law abiding citizen” from actually owning a gun. And so it makes it hard for many to understand just what people like Connor are trying to argue.

    Their “opponent” ends up being a straw man, someone that does not exist, which they can easily pounce and pound. Unfortunately, straw men do not help, as they are a logical fallacy.

    Just know what you are up against. It will take a lot for people like Connor to see past their straw men.

  30. Connor
    April 18, 2007 at 1:57 pm #

    The problem you will find here when talking with people like Connor and Mr. McKee, is that they really do not understand that gun control advocates don’t want to remove weapons from the hands of “law abiding citizens”—which we assume men like Connor and Mr. McKee are.

    Oh, please… While they might say that they do not wish to take guns out of the hands our law-abiding citizens, their fruits do indeed show that the majority wish to remove guns altogether, thus preventing hate crimes, accidents, and any other crime where a gun may come into play.

    However, none of the gun control laws that I’ve seen out there harm a regular “law abiding citizen” from actually owning a gun.

    How about citizens of New Orleans being forced to surrender all weapons after Katrina? How about the Brady Bill and similar legislation that creates mounds of red tape and legal loopholes in order to purchase a single weapon? While most legal advances don’t currently banish all guns outright, they continue to push in that direction.

    And so it makes it hard for many to understand just what people like Connor are trying to argue.

    Hard for many? Doubtful. Just you. ;)

    Their “opponent” ends up being a straw man, someone that does not exist, which they can easily pounce and pound.

    Comment #28. Dan, I’m surprised. You usually bring in the “straw man” argument earlier in an attempt to sidestep any discussion or rebuttal. What took you so long?

  31. Dan
    April 18, 2007 at 1:57 pm #

    I wait to hear what Connor has to say about the conservative bloggers who piled it on the “weak,” “cowardly,” students who didn’t jump the gunner. I guess these conservative commentators couldn’t be taking advantage of the tragedy to score political points. Only liberals do such nasty vile things. Ain’t that right, Connor.

  32. Jeff
    April 18, 2007 at 1:58 pm #

    Dan,

    Point taken. I read this blog a lot, but don’t comment much for that reason. It’s a lost cause from the get-go although some commentators, like yourself, John, and others, tend to be fairly thoughtful folks that are nice to discuss things with.

    John,

    I don’t see how I need to find an instance, where its at least *reasonably* possible that an armed citizen could aid in an emergency.

    Except that in a situation with a shooter in a large group of people it is reasonable to suggest that another gunman could do more harm than good. Is it not? The Ogden Police Officer almost got shot by police at Trolley Square. Listen to the audio of the incident. It’s true.

    Your counter-argument against the officer at Trolley Square is conjecture as well.

    It’s not. He was trained to isolate the shooter before firing, which a lay-citizen is not. A normal person with a gun in that situation could have added to the victim count. It’s different for a person who’s defending their home or car. It’s a one-on-one type of situation. In a more public attack like this, a private citizen with a gun needs to be quite careful in how he/she proceeds. That’s why the officer was much better equipped than a normal citizen.

    Connor,

    Interesting site. Are there any examples in a more public, larger scale incident where a CCP holder has done the same thing? I do think that the situations are different. I appreciate you offering some evidence, though. It helps make things a little more concrete.

    Please understand that I think law-abiding citizens should be able to carry a weapon; however, I don’t think that in the VT incident, a student or professor with a gun would have been such a clear-cut solution as you make it appear. Also, I don’t believe that most gun-control advocates are as extreme as you make them sound.

  33. Dan
    April 18, 2007 at 1:59 pm #

    Connor,

    Here is a simple question for you. Can you own a gun?

  34. Jeff
    April 18, 2007 at 2:04 pm #

    Hard for many? Doubtful. Just you. ;)

    And me! :)

    Comment #28. Dan, I’m surprised. You usually bring in the “straw man” argument earlier in an attempt to sidestep any discussion or rebuttal. What took you so long?

    Is it sidestepping an argument to show the flaw in your rhetorical approach? We all use straw-men when arguing something we’re passionate about, Connor, and a bunch of other logical fallacies because they make the counter-argument much harder. Just because we all do it doesn’t make it right. :)

  35. Dan
    April 18, 2007 at 2:10 pm #

    Jeff,

    Except that in a situation with a shooter in a large group of people it is reasonable to suggest that another gunman could do more harm than good. Is it not? The Ogden Police Officer almost got shot by police at Trolley Square. Listen to the audio of the incident.

    heh, let’s take this scenario and see about a possible scenario at Virginia Tech. Say guns were allowed on campus and some students at the Norris Hall had guns. Say one of them began shooting back. The bad guy runs off towards another classroom. Now you have two shooters running around. If you are a third student there in the Hall with your own gun, how do YOU know which shooter is the good guy and which one is the bad guy? Say a fourth student also has a gun. And a fifth. In an incident such as the one at the school, with the numerous places to hide, how can you, as one of the gunners, tell which gunner is the bad guy?

    The allowance of guns on campus does not stop massacres. It will create a wholly different field, and will most likely change the tactics of him who desires to kill, but it is a fantasy to think that in such a situation the allowance of others to have guns will somehow lessen the amount of people being killed.

  36. John
    April 18, 2007 at 2:10 pm #

    Jeff,

    Except that in a situation with a shooter in a large group of people it is reasonable to suggest that another gunman could do more harm than good. Is it not? The Ogden Police Officer almost got shot by police at Trolley Square. Listen to the audio of the incident. It’s true.

    So someone “almost” getting hurt your concern? Correct me if I am wrong, but there was just some quick communication that needed to happen – no shots were fired by police at the Ogden officer.

    I think at least a few people can thank that officer for their lives.

    I think I’ll take that rather than have the gunman in there uninhibited by someone else that is armed.

    It’s not. He was trained to isolate the shooter before firing, which a lay-citizen is not.

    Conjecture. Sure, more probable, but conjecture all the same. Most states require training before issuing any permit.

    A normal person with a gun in that situation could have added to the victim count.

    Conjecture.

  37. Dan
    April 18, 2007 at 2:12 pm #

    And say you are a sixth gunner who rushes into a classroom, toting your gun, to warn people, why wouldn’t a seventh gunner in the classroom not get nervous and take you out as you run in with your gun in hand? How does HE know you aren’t the bad guy?

    I mean, talk about a massacre waiting to happen!

  38. Dan
    April 18, 2007 at 2:13 pm #

    John,

    but there was just some quick communication that needed to happen

    and in a situation like Norris Hall, just how would the numerous “good” gunners communicate to each other so they don’t accidentally take each other out as they try to nab the “bad” guy?

  39. Connor
    April 18, 2007 at 2:17 pm #

    Dan,

    Only liberals do such nasty vile things. Ain’t that right, Connor.

    Stop myopically focusing on one sentence of the entire post, Dan. We’re talking about gun control here, not anybody who ever uses a tragedy to push a political agenda. I never said that the other side doesn’t do it as well. As I commented earlier, I chose to highlight gun control advocates’ use of the tragedy to further their own, because I disagree with them. You’re ignoring the larger discussion to freak out about unfair treatment and unequal attention. Move on.

    Here is a simple question for you. Can you own a gun?

    I can and I do.

    …and in a situation like Norris Hall, just how would the numerous “good” gunners communicate to each other so they don’t accidentally take each other out as they try to nab the “bad” guy?

    Whatever happened to “waiting until all the facts are out?” ;)

  40. Dan
    April 18, 2007 at 2:21 pm #

    Whatever happened to “waiting until all the facts are out?”

    hey, if the cat is out of the bag, I might as well chase after it.

    Here is a simple question for you. Can you own a gun?

    I can and I do.

    Then we’re all done here. :)

  41. Connor
    April 18, 2007 at 2:30 pm #

    Then we’re all done here.

    Far from it, Dan. We’re not talking about me or Utah law. We’re talking about the larger scope of gun control, specifically as it might have impacted the events at Virginia Tech.

    Once again, sidestepping the argument and main point. Such a mentality engenders “all is well”-ism. I have food, a home, and clothes, why should I care about anybody else? I have freedom of speech and religion, big deal if nobody else does?

    We’re far from done here, and you know it.

  42. Dan
    April 18, 2007 at 2:35 pm #

    Connor,

    Fair enough. Here’s another simple question: Do you know of any “law abiding citizen” who cannot purchase and own a gun anywhere in the United States?

  43. Dan
    April 18, 2007 at 2:37 pm #

    and by the way, my comment was not a selfish one. It was to show that you, a law-abiding citizen are perfectly capable of owning your own gun. Basically I’m attacking your unfounded fear by asking the most simplest of questions. It has nothing to do with “all is well”-isms.

  44. John
    April 18, 2007 at 2:38 pm #

    And say you are a sixth gunner who rushes into a classroom, toting your gun, to warn people, why wouldn’t a seventh gunner in the classroom not get nervous and take you out as you run in with your gun in hand? How does HE know you aren’t the bad guy?

    I mean, talk about a massacre waiting to happen!

    Um, because I’m not gunning down innocent people. That’s probably how he’d come to that conclusion.

    I’m thinking shooting fish in a barrel is more of a massacre. I think you’d think twice about shooting in barrels if you knew the fish were armed too.

    and in a situation like Norris Hall, just how would the numerous “good” gunners communicate to each other so they don’t accidentally take each other out as they try to nab the “bad” guy?

    Dear goodness, I don’t know. I guess they’d all have to resort to shooting everyone they see with a gun, just to make sure the bad guy doesn’t kill anyone.

    Please.

    Maybe the bad guy is the one gunning down innocent people.

    Okay worse case scenario – you walk into two people in a firefight, and have no idea who is the bad guy. The situation is already better than it would be had the bad guy not been met with resistance. No one is dead yet.

  45. John
    April 18, 2007 at 2:40 pm #

    Dan,

    Either I’ve completely missed your point, or you don’t really have one.

    Yes, people can own guns…

    ?

  46. Dan
    April 18, 2007 at 2:41 pm #

    John,

    Okay worse case scenario – you walk into two people in a firefight, and have no idea who is the bad guy. The situation is already better than it would be had the bad guy not been met with resistance. No one is dead yet.

    I can actually think of worse case scenarios.

  47. Connor
    April 18, 2007 at 2:42 pm #

    Dan,

    Owning and carrying are two entirely different things. Owning a gun that’s sitting in your home closet doesn’t do much good when there’s a life-threatening situation at work or school.

    The issue is the on-person concealment of weapons, for protection at all times, should the person choose to so arm themselves.

    While students at VT were able to purchase weapons, they were not able to have them on campus. So, gun ownership means squat if you can’t carry it around with you.

  48. Dan
    April 18, 2007 at 2:43 pm #

    John,

    I’ve not missed the point at all. I’m debunking the unfounded fears with simple questions.

  49. Connor
    April 18, 2007 at 2:45 pm #

    I’m debunking the unfounded fears with simple questions.

    Dan, since you claim that others don’t understand the point of my arguments, and since you evidently believe I and others hold “unfounded fears”, please elaborate what you believe these fears are.

  50. Michael L. McKee
    April 18, 2007 at 2:59 pm #

    Dan

    Feel free to say anything you would like concerning me or my philosophical approach to the discussion at hand. You may even tread upon the unstable ground concerning my relationship to Christ. However, I believe you should not permit yourself to be too certain you are able to discern standards of Christianity since your own may not meet the standards considered by our Savior Jesus Christ.

    Jeff

    I am happy to see I scare you a little. Perhaps you will go out and get the permit you do not need to carry or possess a gun since that guaranty has already been given, and there has never been a Constitutional Amendment to bring about the need to seek further permission to “Keep and Bear Arms.” Of course you may harbor the allusion that the Supreme Court has the power to create infringements upon this right. You may even believe the individual states, counties and municipalities have the power to regulate your right to own and carry a gun of any particular type. There is another reason you should obtain a gun and learn to handle it safely and proficiently. You may need it to protect your family at some point in the future once you come to the stark realization that the Federal Government is never going to provide the protection you desire. Hopefully, you will not fear me to the point where you believe I may snap and come looking for you.

    Dan

    As for my being a “law abiding citizen.” I obey all of the laws of the Constitution as originally set forth, and all laws which have been duly set forth by the voice of the people including the ones with which I disagree. I will always be in the camp with those who work to repeal bad laws which were forced upon the people by means of unconstitutional methods, and deception. I also obey the higher laws of God which are basically outlined within the 10 Commandments. I often fail at the higher laws which I am certain you would gladly point out to me.

  51. John
    April 18, 2007 at 3:07 pm #

    I can actually think of worse case scenarios.

    Explain.

    I’m debunking the unfounded fears with simple questions.

    Please elaborate.

    Seems you’re better at telling me what you can do rather than actually doing it.

  52. Connor
    April 18, 2007 at 3:12 pm #

    William Grigg also chimed in on the Virginia Tech shootings, implicating the government for creating “a veritable hunting preserve for the armed psychopath who carried out the massacre.

  53. MarkM66
    April 18, 2007 at 3:47 pm #

    Recent comments by students at the grieving college seem to confirm your views:

    “It not be fair! If I be packing, I woulda put a cap in that MFer”, said English Lit. student, Leeza Billows. “I be shooting anyone that get in my face, including that f….g ho who be eyeing off my man. I be wasten that skanky bitch for sure”.Leeza was later hospitalised after an apparent knife fight with a fellow female student.

    Hailey from California commented, “like, it’s just like sooo stupid. If like I’d had a like a gun, like I could have like, you know, like, defended myself”. Asked whether she saw the attack, Hailey replied, “Yeah, sort of, I mean, I was like pretty stoned, you know, but I shoot real good when I’m like out of it”.

    NRA Representatives praised the attitudes of students as “wise and patriotic upholders of the American Constitution”.

  54. Connor
    April 18, 2007 at 3:50 pm #

    MarkM66,

    Your fiction leaves much to be desired.

  55. MarkM66
    April 18, 2007 at 4:11 pm #

    As do your opinions, Sir. Every time there’s yet another massacre of this sort, I read this same sort of nonsense. You fail to consider the fact that a large proportion of the population of the USA is in fact armed, but go and see how many stories can find about someone successfully defending themselves against a gunman with their own firearm – it’s virtually unheard of.

    On the other hand, how many legally owned guns are used to shoot innocent people? Plenty of them. Even highly trained police officers shoot people wrongly; do you really believe civilians carrying firearms are not going to produce them when faced with a heated argument? The do and the will.

    People have fists, and they inevitably use them. If they carry a knife, they end up slicing someone. If they’re carrying a gun, and pull that out, you’re going to get shot, and even if you have a gun, you won’t have time to pull it out anyway.

    More guns will make us safe – please!!

  56. Connor
    April 18, 2007 at 4:34 pm #

    You fail to consider the fact that a large proportion of the population of the USA is in fact armed, but go and see how many stories can find about someone successfully defending themselves against a gunman with their own firearm – it’s virtually unheard of.

    Check out comment #25, Mark, you may find something you like. :)

    People have fists, and they inevitably use them. If they carry a knife, they end up slicing someone.

    While you’re apparently seeking to refute my point, you’re only supporting it. Read the post again; you’ll see that I argue that anything can be used as a weapon, so the weapon itself is not the issue.

    More guns will make us safe – please!!

    Mark, why are you commenting here without even reading the post? Who here has once said that “more guns will make us safe”?

  57. John
    April 18, 2007 at 4:41 pm #

    MarkM66,

    If you think its funny to joke about this situation, I pity you. Shame on you for making light of a real tragic situation.

    You fail to consider the fact that a large proportion of the population of the USA is in fact armed, but go and see how many stories can find about someone successfully defending themselves against a gunman with their own firearm – it’s virtually unheard of.

    You fail to realize a media industry bias. Just because something is ‘unheard of’ doesn’t mean it doesn’t happen.

    Even highly trained police officers shoot people wrongly; do you really believe civilians carrying firearms are not going to produce them when faced with a heated argument? They do and they will.

    Mmmm… sounds like you’re just offering your opinion.

    Do they end up killing twenty or thirty people when it happens? Does it happen as often as you seem to think it does? Are the victims completely innocent in these ‘heated’ situations?

    Do you think I’m as eager to pull a weapon out if there’s a decent chance my target has one as well?

  58. MarkM66
    April 18, 2007 at 5:41 pm #

    John, I wasn’t making light of the shooting – I watched the coverage on TV and it made me sick. What I am making light of, is the way the pro-gun nuts jump on these situations. These people don’t care about your rights, and they certainly don’t care about the rights of the victims, they only care about their right to play with their toys when and where they feel like it. Same people who like to play pretend soldier games on the weekend and live out their Rambo fantasies.

    Conner, I would suggest that you spend some time outside the USA, and see the difference in countries with tough gun policies. The one thing I’ve noticed whenever I’ve been in the States is that Americans are the most frightened people I’ve seen anywhere. You fear violence, look for it everywhere, and therefore are much more likely to react violently at the slightest perceived provocation.

    Add guns to such an attitude of fear and you get – modern America. Whether guns are the cause of your fears doesn’t really matter. They are most certainly not the solution.

  59. Mark N.
    April 18, 2007 at 6:09 pm #

    Michael M. — We already have all of the facts in that we know a person took the lives of 32 of his fellow men and himself, and the manner in which he chose to do it is not relevant.

    Sure it’s relevant: do you think that he could have caused this much mayhem if he had been restricted to using a knife or some other “non-firearms” type of weapon?

    It’s nice to be able to assume that everyone can be trusted to do the right thing with a gun all of the time, but the truth of the matter is that we just can’t.

    The goal, it seems to me, is to level the field when it comes to self-protection: you either arm everyone, or you disarm everyone. At this point, I’d just as soon go with option B, because I’m not sure that even the police ought to be trusted with guns most of the time.

    As “The Karate Kid’s” Mr. Miyagi would say, “Too much advantage”.

    Or, as Joseph Smith said: “We have learned by sad experience that it is the nature and disposition of almost all men, as soon as they get a little authority, as they suppose, they will immediately begin to exercise unrighteous dominion.”

    For too many people, authority comes from the barrel of a gun, and as we have seen, the unrighteous dominion that results can be horrific.

  60. Mark N.
    April 18, 2007 at 6:16 pm #

    Dan — How does HE know you aren’t the bad guy?

    That’s why the police are generally not in favor of average citizens packing heat. It makes their job much easier to be able to assume that the guy with a gun who’s not in a police uniform is the bad guy.

  61. John
    April 18, 2007 at 6:48 pm #

    John, I wasn’t making light of the shooting – I watched the coverage on TV and it made me sick. What I am making light of, is the way the pro-gun nuts jump on these situations. These people don’t care about your rights, and they certainly don’t care about the rights of the victims, they only care about their right to play with their toys when and where they feel like it. Same people who like to play pretend soldier games on the weekend and live out their Rambo fantasies.

    Your predjudices are showing. I don’t think that gives you any right to joke around about what happened in Virginia, either. Or maybe I’m just a little afraid to joke about it because I live in the US.

    No idea what you’re talking about.

  62. Allthoseinfavormaydosoby...
    April 18, 2007 at 6:55 pm #

    Mark N.
    I have a friend who legally carries a concealed weapon. He has been pulled over once. Right when he pulled over he stuck both hands out his window and told the officer he was legally armed with a concealed weapon. The officer was understanding and thanked him for his honesty and the ticket was given without incident.

    Dan and Connor need to take the conversation ( I say this like I am an administrator) to messenger or something…as the issue has been beat to death and clearly either position isn’t swaying.
    :P

  63. Dan
    April 18, 2007 at 7:07 pm #

    allthoseinfavormaydosoby…,

    I’ve seen the latest Gallup poll which shows 56% of Americans prefer stricter controls on guns, and that that number has stayed basically the same even through Columbine (though during Columbine the number jumped to 68%). This incident will not change the dynamic of the gun control debate.

    I still have not expressed my personal views on gun control. My quibble with Connor, and the only reason I commented on here, was his swipe at “gun control advocates” for supposedly “taking advantage of the tragedy to gain political points,” which is exactly what Connor is doing with this post. If he can take advantage of the tragedy to score his own political points, why can’t others without being attacked? So I figure I’d make it even and attack him. Seems fair to me. :)

  64. Dan
    April 18, 2007 at 7:08 pm #

    Mr. McKee,

    It is very simple, see. You attack me, I attack you. You don’t attack me, I leave you alone. I’d prefer a clean debate, but I will strike back if attacked. I also am not a perfect Christian.

  65. MarkM66
    April 18, 2007 at 7:10 pm #

    John, my wife’s an American – I met her there – and we’ve spent the last 10 years living alternatively in Australia and the States. Of what am I being accused of being prejudiced?

    If it’s gun-loving, ultra-conservative, preparedness practitioners (read toy soldier Rambo fantasists), I plead guilty. Are you watching the news? The video made by the VA Tech killer?

    This kid had complaints made against him by both teachers and students, was ordered by a court into a mental health unit, then went into a shop and bought a 9mm handgun, no questions asked. This is the type of person whose rights you so fervantly preach about protecting, whether you want to admit it or not.

  66. Mark N.
    April 18, 2007 at 7:10 pm #

    Allthose… — he stuck both hands out his window and told the officer he was legally armed with a concealed weapon

    Yes, that’s good to do when you’re in a non-threatening situation like a traffic stop, but when there’s a roomful of students where it’s not just the bad guy who is carrying a firearm when the cop walks in, do you think the cop is going to want to spend a lot of time trying to figure out which one is the good student and which one is the bad one?

    Cops are trained to shoot to kill once the gun comes out of the holster. They don’t particularly care who the good guys in the room are if those good guys aren’t wearing a police uniform. All they know is that if somebody in the room has to die today, they’re going to do their level best to make sure that the dead guy isn’t a cop.

  67. Dan
    April 18, 2007 at 7:21 pm #

    Connor,

    the fear you have is that this country will take away your right to own a gun, and your right to protect yourself. Now, this is not true, so I point out that any law abiding citizen is perfectly capable of owning a gun. The problem is that our society has a bunch of crazed people who also can have access to those same guns you have access to. To prevent such horrific incidents from occurring, why not find ways to ensure crazed individuals do not even get close to owning guns? Seems to make sense to me. Now, what are those ways? I think some gun control advocates go too far, and impede on the rights of citizens. However, there has to be a control of some kind. What control was there to ensure Mr. Cho couldn’t get a gun? Well, on the form he filled out (which didn’t require a background check), it states that if he were involuntarily admitted into a psychiatric institution, he cannot own a gun. Well, he of course, lied on the form. Like he really cared if he got caught lying. But because no background check was done, he got a gun when legally he was forbidden to own it. What do law abiding citizens have against having their backgrounds checked? If they are law abiding, they’ve got nothing to hide. Furthermore, we go through background checks all the time, for new employment, and limited for credit. It is something we’ve all accepted as a normal part of our society. So why not for owning guns too? After all, the purpose of a gun is not “defense.” It is designed to kill a living thing. It is designed to shoot off a bullet that has as its intent to penetrate and terminate life. That is the purpose of a gun. Why give those out freely to any who can pay cash?

    I won’t break this fear of yours Connor. Like that Gallup Poll showed, people’s views on gun control have basically formed and have not changed at all over the past 20 years or so. So those who are against gun control will continue to be so until the second coming. And heck, maybe even after they will still have a fear of governmental control.

    No one is asking law abiding citizens to give up their guns (at least not anyone with political clout). Personally, what I am asking is that we do perform background checks on individuals before handing them guns. Is this going to be perfect? Hardly. Someone like Mr. Cho could easily go on the black market and get himself a gun. But it does choke off the avenues that such individuals have in their quest for murder.

  68. Connor
    April 18, 2007 at 7:34 pm #

    The fear you have is that this country will take away your right to own a gun, and your right to protect yourself. Now, this is not true…

    That’s interesting you seem to be able to foretell what all future gun control legislation will and will not do. The American Empire will not go on forever, and one step in its downfall will most likely be a push to restrict guns amongst the citizenry.

    Remember, eternal vigilance is the price of liberty.

    The problem is that our society has a bunch of crazed people who also can have access to those same guns you have access to.

    What do law abiding citizens have against having their backgrounds checked? If they are law abiding, they’ve got nothing to hide.

    Judge Napolitano said it best:

    Most Americans don’t want the government to know of their personal behavior; not because we have anything to hide, but because we don’t live in the former East Germany or the old Soviet Union; because government in a free society is supposed to serve the people, not spy on them; because without probable cause, without some demonstrable evidence of some personal criminal behavior, the Constitution declares that our personal lives are none of the government’s business.

    Furthermore, we go through background checks all the time, for new employment, and limited for credit.

    Ah, yes, but with arming yourself for self-defense we’re talking about rights. You don’t have the right to employment or the right to get a loan, but you do have the right to protect yourself. Very different.

    After all, the purpose of a gun is not “defense.” It is designed to kill a living thing.

    There’s Orwellian doublespeak if I ever saw it.

    I won’t break this fear of yours Connor.

    You insist on calling it fear. I call it a wise observation based on historical precedence.

    Someone like Mr. Cho could easily go on the black market and get himself a gun.

    There lies the main argument against increased gun control. You inconvenience the law-abiding citizens, put a burden upon the system, create more controlling legislation, all in attempt to prevent somebody from getting a gun that can still easily do so on the black market.

  69. Michael L. McKee
    April 19, 2007 at 11:06 am #

    There is a wonderfully written and presented work by John P. Pratt entitled “Blindness Conditioning” which can be found by going to Meridian Magazine. He had written a previous article entitled “How Can We Know Truth” which is equally enlightening and informative.

    He has even warned us to beware of what he has written as it may be offensive to the world view of some. I did not find it in any way as being problematic to me although I am certain some would disagree. I sincerely hope all involved in this thread will give it a look even if it does trouble them to read it through.

  70. chad
    April 20, 2007 at 12:49 am #

    Connor, I can’t help but think that your arguments are a little closed minded. Why is it that we as americans feel that we are so entitled to certain rights that we fight to the death for them, even if those right s are a detriment to our country? The irony is that this particular right, for which we fight to the death, may end up killing us as it did the Virgina tech students. Of course the ultimate responsibility lies with the shooter, no-one disputes that. But how can we deny that that countries who restrict the proliferation of guns, such as most european countries and our neighbor to the north, have considerabley less incidents involving guns and therefore a fraction of the gun related deaths per capita?
    Let’s quit using fear for the basis of gun rights and face up to a flaw in our system which makes our country one of the best places to live in the world. Our system is not perfect and therefore needs to be updated constantly. Lets admit that we are trailing the rest of the first world in this issue and change.

  71. MarkM66
    April 20, 2007 at 1:12 am #

    Hi Chad,

    What you’re saying is true. I live in Australia, and we have tough gun laws, particularly in relation to handguns. Crimes committed with guns are a fraction of the United States, and same it true of Great Britain. Canada, and may European countries.

    As you say, the general quality of living in States is very high, and there is much to admired about your country in many ways. Guns laws, however, are an exception – and I don’t understand why the U.S.A wouldn’t want to tackle this issue, and thus become a leader in another area of westeren civilization.

    When the Constitution was written, and the Bill of Rights, they never could have envisioned the proliferation of handguns, Mach 10’s, and other assault weapons. I hardly think that was what they had in mind.

    Regards,
    Mark M

  72. Carissa
    April 20, 2007 at 12:09 pm #

    Interesting argument.

    I am still waiting for more discussion about this, though:

    Someone like Mr. Cho could easily go on the black market and get himself a gun.

    There lies the main argument against increased gun control. You inconvenience the law-abiding citizens, put a burden upon the system, create more controlling legislation, all in attempt to prevent somebody from getting a gun that can still easily do so on the black market.

    If the “bad guys” will always be able to get guns anyway, why should we make it harder for the law-abiding ones?

  73. shestalou
    April 24, 2007 at 8:55 am #

    http://freepages.history.rootsweb.com/~bauerle/disaster.htm This is alink to the worst massacre in USA history, the media forgets the Bath School disaster because it involves explosives and not guns and many were children 45 killed and 58 injured.

  74. MarkM66
    April 24, 2007 at 10:23 am #

    This argument that claims that Cho could have easily have got hold of a gun on the black market is a nonsense. For one thing, this guy had no friends, not even aquaintances as from all accounts he wouldn’t even talk to anyone. To source a handgun on the black market would at the very least take contacts – someone to put him in touch with a black marketeer. That might not have been as easy as people seem to think for an antisocial git like this Cho.

    Another point – who’s to say that Cho would not have caught by the law while trying to purchase an illegal gun? If he had, this whole tragedy may have been avoided, so it’s not as clear cut as many people like to believe.

    All these arguments aside, why make it easy for these bastards to get hold of guns? Ten minutes to buy a 9mm handgun. It’s harder in most places to get a driver’s license.

    Regards,
    Mark M

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