Do guns protect you, or simply cause violence?
Metaphorguy: 9/10 times you hear about guns it's because a criminal was using one to hold up a liquor store or bank. They shot up their family member who wronged them, or went on a rampage.
People say they are our rights, they protect us, but I just hear more often bad people getting their hands on one, than anyone ever using them for good. You don't need a handgun to hunt or a semi-automatic M16 to hunt. Sure store owners keep them under the counter to scare off potential robbers,
but they're so easy to hide I hate that people carry them around like this is f**ng Mad Max.
ghostgeek: Guns are tightly controlled in the UK, so there is little gun crime. America, in contrast, seems to have a lot of guns and a lot of gun crime. This suggests that the more guns there are, the more gun violence there is. I guess when guns are available people tend to use them.
Some people are violent and wont be stopped by reasoning. So what do you think those who have to protect themselves should do???
ghostgeek: Duncan, it is a known fact that many more people are shot in America than in the UK. One reason for that could be the fact that it is a lot harder to get a gun in the UK than in America. Right, with that under our belt, let's consider another fact, the number of school and college pupils shot by disaffected students in the two countries. America is way out front. Having a gun makes it very easy to kill, therefore there are more killings than if some other method had to be used.
A list of school shootings can be found here:
(Edited by ghostgeek)
Metaphorguy: The UK is very small in comparison to the USA. Many times people say it's the inner cities that have all these problems, with children joining gangs, and then it's some suburban white kid who was bullied temporarily and is suffering from psychotic behavior and depression who does Columbine. Or on the other spectrum it has little to do with economic factors at all when the Sandy Hook elementary shooting occurred. So it's hard for anyone to really focus resources on one area when it could be anyone, anywhere to be a huge threat. And who knows if putting resources anywhere will help at all? The kid who shot up a movie theater in Colorado was receiving psychiatric treatment, all the while he was planning his attack while being seen by a therapist.
Businesses should just be saying no quite a bit more than yes to selling people guns. Sure rifles, shotguns for hunting but it should be quite a bit more difficult to get handguns and assault rifles outside of shooting ranges.
Ghostgeek said " Guns are tightly controlled in the UK, so there is little gun crime "
Wrong Ghostgeek. Even after taking out the military and police shootings there are far more gun crimes in the UK as there should be none.
In the USA where people can carry arms you would expect there to be some gun crimes.
Geoff: Actually, the UK is approximately 1/50 the size of the USA geographically, with 1/5 the population - meaning we have a much, much higher population density.
But, even taking that into account - gun crime (even before most guns were outlawed) was never the problem in the UK it is in the States. The recent stat that American police shot and killed more people in March of this year than the British police have shot and killed in 115 years is an accurate one.
There is all ways the unthinking nerd who tries to use an anti-gun thread to incite.
I was looking forward to the Catholic Conspiracy part.
Geoff: There is gun crime in the UK - but banning something doesn't stop it - it might just be made slightly more difficult. A determined person in the UK could get hold of a gun.
The fact is, I have never felt that I needed to own a gun to protect myself, not even when I worked in a store.
However, the problem with gun ownership running rampant is that more deaths occur through accidents than through deliberate acts (i.e. combining suicides with homicides).
"...meaning we have a much, much higher population density.... I have never felt that I needed to own a gun to protect myself, not even when I worked in a store." !!!
Geoff: Duncan, please don't derail this thread with your juvenile attempts to attack me - I am not attacking you, until now I wasn't even addressing you.
Razz_: Geoff I read (somewhere) that the UK has had a 23% increase with knife violence from the previous year. Would you consider this to be accurate?
Here are my thoughts. If people are going to be violent, they are going to grab the weapon that will do what they are setting out to do...hurt someone. I live in the USA and I have never in my life seen anyone (with exception of law enforcement) with a gun on them walking around with it (outside of hunting) Sure we see people going off to hunt and they have rifles (deer) or shotguns (birds). Each State has different laws. I have heard stories about people in certain states carrying openly. I guess I just haven't seen this violence everyone speaks of first hand.
Geoff: There was a 23% increase in the number of young people in London being stabbed in the 12 months to May 2015 compared to the previous 12 month period. That's after five years of steady decline in knife crime figures. The Metropolitan police put this rise down to a reduction in "stop and search" which was successful in reducing knife attacks.
You are right, in my opinion - if someone has it in their head to be violent, they will use whatever is to hand. But a gun is more likely to be fatal than a knife. And it's more difficult to kill someone (including yourself) with a knife than a gun.
Java AKA Fortran is right in that it is mainly a problem for cities. The single biggest factor in violent crime is gangs, and the single biggest factor promoting gang crime is poverty. Unfortunately, the current British government doesn't seem to have much sympathy for the poor, and I believe that this attitude is exacerbating the situation.
dennygringo56: I live in Tegucigalpa Honduras. I just moved here from New York. I'm getting a gun tomorrow.
LiptonCambell: >>> 9/10 times you hear about guns it's because a criminal was using one to hold up a liquor store or bank. They shot up their family member who wronged them, or went on a rampage.
I'd say thats largely a media bias. You don't hear good news from the news...go figure...
Not to mention, if someone were to threaten you with a knife, and you pull out a gun, and they run off- is it reported? So we simply do not hear about the actual numbers of people who are protected by guns. maybe it's alot. maybe it's very little.
But the fact that you're not hearing about it doesn't mean it's automatically a little
Personally, I feel the freedom to protect your life in a life threatening situation is a basic human right. It doesn't matter if it's uncommon- what matters is, it is your right, should you choose to use it- and it is entirely unethical for a society to force you to be a victim for their own whims....
>>>Guns are tightly controlled in the UK, so there is little gun crime.
I've actually discussed this at length in Datahut's thread about guns...there is simply no reason to believe that gun crime in England was affected by the tight gun controls. They basically banned them, and the homicide rate went up for the first couple of years following. Since the ban, the homicide rate has not reached a rate LOWER than how it was prior to the ban.
>>> This suggests that the more guns there are, the more gun violence there is.
Not to go all "Bowling for Columbine" on you, but that's simply not true. There are dozens of country who have high gun per person rates, yet have lower homicides and gun violence than the United States....
Canada, Sweden, Norway, France, Germany, Iceland, all these countries appear in the top 15 in more armed per person- and all these countries have some of the lowest homicide rates in the western world....Iceland is 0.3%, Germany is 0.8%, France is 1%(the same rate as your example, England), Sweden is 0.7%, Norway is 2.2%, and Canada is 1.6%
>>>Duncan, it is a known fact that many more people are shot in America than in the UK
If you're referring to massacres and school shootings, they simply did not happen in such numbers n the UK. Ever. There was one significant school shooting in the 90's, that drove to their near-total ban. But before? There was nothing.
So to suggest an extremely rare event continues to be rare now because of a law is fallacious reasoning. I could sell you a rock that keeps tigers off your property- and you couldn't prove that it doesn't, because, hey, no tigers....
>>>Having a gun makes it very easy to kill, therefore there are more killings than if some other method had to be used
Yes. Last year, a student in an UK school, entered a Spanish class and stabbed a teacher to death. Their ban on guns did not save her life.
Clearly the issue exists regardless if guns exist.The issue isn't about guns in society, but violence.
(Edited by LiptonCambell)
LiptonCambell: >>>The single biggest factor in violent crime is gangs, and the single biggest factor promoting gang crime is poverty. Unfortunately, the current British government doesn't seem to have much sympathy for the poor, and I believe that this attitude is exacerbating the situation.
I agree completely. These acts of violence are a symptom of a greater problem, and banning guns are just a band-aid.
ghostgeek: Lipton, in Dunblane, Scotland, a lone gunman in 1996 went on a shooting spree at a school, killing 16 children and their teacher. Now contrast that with your example of a student entering a Spanish class and stabbing a teacher to death. Just one teacher killed. Tragic yes, but what if the student had had a gun? Think how easy it would have been for the gunman to start shooting his fellow students as well. You can kill with a knife, but it is much harder to kill significant numbers than with a gun.
The news has been full of the sad fate of thirty-eight tourists who were shot in the holiday resort of Sousse in Tunisia. So, what about the laughing gunman who shot 85 young victims, one by one, in Norway in 2011? Or the nutter who shot 14 people dead in the Berkshire town of Hungerford in 1987? Or the bloke who shot 28 people in Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut, in 2012? Without guns these killers, and others like them, would have been hard pressed to kill the numbers they did.
Geoff: When they brought in the ban on handguns, that paragon of sanity Prince Philip (there was a deep well of sarcasm there, in case no one picked up on it) said, "Are they going to ban cricket bats next?"
I sort of see his point - yes, I could if I felt the need, kill someone with a cricket bat. But, I could't kill someone at thirty paces with less thought than snapping a pencil.
I suppose, if I knew that the criminals in my locality were likely to be armed with guns, then my opinion on the matter might be different.
ghostgeek: Here's something to reflect on:
"In 2012, 409 people were shot and killed by American police in what were termed justifiable shootings. In that same year, British police officers fired their weapons just once. No one was killed.
In 2013, British police officers fired their weapons all of three times. No one died. According to The Economist, "British citizens are around 100 times less likely to be shot by a police officer than Americans. Between 2010 and 2014, the police force of one small American city — Albuquerque in New Mexico — shot and killed 23 civilians; seven times more than the number of Brits killed by all of England and Wales’s 43 forces during the same period.
The Economist argues that the reason for this disparity is actually quite simple: guns are comparatively rare in the UK. Most cops don't carry them and criminals rarely have access to them. The last time a British officer was killed by a gun was in 2012. In the US last year, 30 police officers were shot and killed in the line of duty.
In December, PRI's The World reported on Icelanders grieving after their police force killed a man — for the first time in the country's history as a republic."
[ http://www.pri.org/stories/2014-08-18/how-many-times-british-cops-fired-guns-all-last-year-3 ]
Geoff: There is the cultural difference. Americans have Wyatt Earp - whereas the British are more likely to want to wield a longbow (with all of the training and experience doing so successfully would entail).
In the US, people have guns - I can understand the desire to have one myself to balance the playing field.
In the UK, kids use knives and adults use their fists when words run out. There's no need to own a gun to defend yourself, because you know your opponent won't have one.
PuppYofDoom: i dont like guns. but i deal with crazy ppl with alot of money. therefor guns are required sometimes.
would be cooler if we were all ninjas.
LiptonCambell: >>>Lipton, in Dunblane, Scotland, a lone gunman in 1996 went on a shooting spree at a school, killing 16 children and their teacher. Now contrast that with your example of a student entering a Spanish class and stabbing a teacher to death.
As effective as your example is, it presents a serious issue- in that, there was no serious school killing sprees prior, or after, that event.
Gun control did not PREVENT anything, because, unlike in America, gun violence was not such an epidemic in the UK.
>>>Now contrast that with your example of a student entering a Spanish class and stabbing a teacher to death. Just one teacher killed.
Yes. It was targeted aggression.
Lets look at these two murderers in each event;
In the Corpus Christi Catholic College event in Leeds, Will Cornick, a 15 year old student murdered Ann Maguire because she was being tough on him in class, and he lashed out. He regretted not being able to kill other teachers, but they barricaded themselves away in locked rooms. So he quietly returned to class and bragged to his classmates what he had done...
He clearly wasn't looking for indiscriminate killing- when he couldn't get his targets, he stopped.
While in the Dunblane School massacre, Thomas Hamilton, aged 43, cut the phone wire to the school, entered in the gym, and started randomly shooting at anything that moved. He then proceeded through the school, killing and injuring children all along his way.
Now, I brought up the murder of Ann Maguire as an example that these laws, while outlawing guns, have not prevented violence and homicidal acts. But if you want to compare it --directly-- to one of the worst civilian events in Britain history? Get real.
Hey, while we're making stupid comparisons, lets compare Virginia Tech massacre to 9/11. Wow, the Virginia Tech massacre doesn't seem so bad now....
If Will Cornick had a gun, more people woudn't have been killed- he wouldn't go around shooting up classrooms, as evidenced by the fact that he didn't harm any other students- he targeted specific people.
There was a far greater differences in those events than one person possessing a gun and the other possessing a knife...you're comparing apples to oranges...
>>>Tragic yes, but what if the student had had a gun?
And what if the teacher, Ann Maguire , had a gun? Or any other teacher there that day? Will intended to kill a pregnant teacher- your meddling with peoples lives, preventing them from having the ability to defend themselves in life threatening situations.
Do you think people should have the right to defend themselves, ghostgeek? Or, in such events, should we all just sit down and accept to be victims?
>>>You can kill with a knife, but it is much harder to kill significant numbers than with a gun.
The columbine students had several guns- but they also had 99 bombs they made at home, from things you can get at most stores.
Think about the destruction the unabomber caused with some manure, or the deaths from the improvised explosive devices in Iraq and Afghanistan.
If we're talking about preventing the sale of things that can cause untold destruction, then guns should be the least of your worries. People can and will create weapons far stronger than guns, from items sold in a corner store.
That gun was made from 2 pipes. Thats all it takes to make a homemade gun ghostgeek- two pipes, one bullet, and theres a shotgun.
>>>Without guns these killers, and others like them, would have been hard pressed to kill the numbers they did.
Conversely, with more honest, responsible gun owners out there, there would be less victims, helpless if a murderer decided to end their lives.
You're suggesting the solution is disarming society. I disagree. That makes a society of victims, where they are unable to protect themselves. Columbine, Sandy Hook, Virginia Tech, Aurora Colorado movie theatre- what do all these things have in common?
They have your ideal in place- guns are banned from being on the premises, unless held by law enforcement.
And just look at what happens when people are unable to defend their lives. Every single significant massacre in the United States has occurred in places that is illegal to possess a gun. Please, feel free to correct my mistake, but i can't find any massacres that don't take place in a 'gun free zone'
Let that sink in ghostgeek; Theres areas in the country where it is illegal for people to shoot one another- and thats where all the mass killings are taking place. Clearly, people who are planning on murdering and assaulting people are not deterred by additional laws saying "Nah-uh uh- you can't do that"
All your solution will create is the only people walking around with guns are murderers and rapists, with everyone who obeys the law is a potential victim.
The people who are harmed the most are the ones who obey the law.