Gun Control

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davidstarlingm
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Re: Gun Control

Postby davidstarlingm » Wed Sep 25, 2013 7:51 pm UTC

Ralith The Third wrote:Would only police agencies have the ability to query the system? I thought previously (and I'm not sure why) that it would be public.

Allow only government agencies to query it, and log each query including officer's name and other details, and sure. I'd be okay with that (unless someone else points out a flaw I missed.)

The proposal was twofold.

First, open NICS to toll-free public access for the purpose of allowing private sellers the option of exercising due diligence in firearm sales to strangers.

Second, retain NICS checks in a federal database for 30 days, during which law enforcement agencies would be permitted to submit queries. However, they would only be able to submit queries using the serial numbers of firearms seized in connection with a crime, and they would be required to mark their queries with their name/badge number, their agency, and the case number associated with the firearm in question. The database would be is stored in such a way as to preclude access by any means other than a valid serial number; no one would be able to search by the name of the buyer or seller, and no one would be able to simply dump all the records.

I don't think you can make it any more secure than that.

Regarding ammo - no, that wouldn't impinge my range day. It also wouldn't impinge Crazy McSpreeshooter's "range" day, either. And it wouldn't stop Sane McCriminalshooter's ability to get ammo through theft or straw purchases, and with ammo, you've got hundreds or thousands of discrete units. With firearms, you actually have a vague hope of stopping or noticing straw purchases.

There are two things at issue here. First, Crazy McSpreeshooter will very possibly be nervous or act more suspiciously. Since he very likely wishes to keep his preparations as clandestine as possible, he may believe that purchasing from multiple retailers will "throw off" suspicion, which means there will be more opportunities for someone to notice. The additional step is not significant for you, but it may be significant for him. For Sane McCriminalshooter, it means he will have to go to the much greater additional step of seeking out a straw buyer, which is definitely an added impediment.

Second, it provides greater opportunity for law enforcement acting in accordance with current laws. Law enforcement can already obtain a warrant place a trace on NICS queries of a particular name or driver license number if they are suspected of straw purchasing. This is one reason why it's particularly stupid to place a limit on how many guns you can buy within a certain time period; it prompts the use of false identities by straw buyers, which impedes the ability of police to trace and identify patterns. If NICS queries are extended to ammunition purchases, it provides an additional means of tracking the movements and activities of people who already have warrants for NICS tracing. Finally, law enforcement could also obtain a warrant to place a trace on NICS queries for a person who has made criminal threats of mass violence, as is often the case for people like Crazy McSpreeshooter; this could help to spot a mounting mass shooting before it happens.

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addams
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Re: Gun Control

Postby addams » Wed Sep 25, 2013 8:28 pm UTC

In one post I read, "Don't watch our every move." In another post I read, "The Police can track every move, therefore we are safe."

ech. I don't know. I suppose I would have to go with, "Don't track us."

CalvinBall. We will know when we do it.

Of course, I do retain my belief that we are safer when our people are under self control and have good will toward their fellow man inshrined somewhere within.

A sweet man that holds us all in his heart and mind as Brothers and Sisters and also holds five guns and a bazooka is less dangerous than an man with a grudge and little else.

(shrug) Do you have those guns under control, yet?
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Tyndmyr
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Re: Gun Control

Postby Tyndmyr » Thu Sep 26, 2013 2:34 pm UTC

davidstarlingm wrote:
Tyndmyr wrote:I don't see anything in your proposal that would add time for someone intent on a mass shooting though.

Add jail time? Or increase the amount of time it would take for them to acquire the necessary tools? That would be part of the intent of the "NICS queries on ammunition purposes" provision. Not that our mass shooter couldn't simply manufacture his own ammo....but that would increase the amount of time involved, now wouldn't it?


Seriously, anyone intent on a mass shooting gives no fucks about jail time. Mass Murders already get all the jail time we can give.

You could add more jail time to straw purchasing, but at 10 years per offense right now(and a quarter million dollar fine), that's already pretty damned significant. Anyone doing it now is already counting on not being caught.

Not really. Manufacturing a couple hundred rounds doesn't take long at all. More reasonably, anyone with guns around can be expected to have a coupla hundred rounds already loaded. It's not as if people wait to buy gas until they need to use their car. The same is true of ammo.

davidstarlingm wrote:The issue is that it's really hard to get caught, since it is only illegal if the prosecution can prove the seller knew the buyer was a felon. That's what we need to address.

It's also really hard to prove the transfer at all. What distinguishes loss or theft from an illegal sale?

Note that while straw purchases are significant, straight up illegal sales(where the prior owner did not own the gun legally) are also quite common, and you've got thefts, etc...there's a lot of ways for firearms to move around.

Yeah. There's not much that can be done about loss, theft, or illegal sales, short of requiring total registration (which is a horrible, horrible idea for a myriad of reasons). But straw purchasing represents the largest potentially preventable movement of firearms into criminal hands.


Preventing straw purchasing requires a way to differentiate it from those other things, though. Someone does a straw purchase and claims it was loss or theft if it ever comes to court, how do you prove him wrong?

Even if you catch someone on video exchanging a gun for money with a felon, it's useless unless you can prove they had prior knowledge that the individual was a felon. I'm not saying that we should require people to do a NICS query on sales to people they already know, but I don't think it's unreasonable to expect some standard of due diligence. At the very least, having instant, free public access to NICS would allow prosecutors to make the case that a straw purchaser "should have known" that the buyer was a felon.


Free access is fine. Changing the burden of proof to the accused is a very, very scary precedent.

davidstarlingm wrote:There are 270,000,000 firearms in the United States. I don't see how illegal random guessing by police on a last-30-days database is going to produce anything useful.

Random? Serial numbers are almost invariably assigned sequentially. I'm told that most police are still capable of counting, these days.

Plus, there's the whole issue that serial numbers are not usually secrets, being printed on the side of the gun and what not. Required on some federal forms. This is like "encrypting" employee records by making the passwords their first name, and making them unchangeable. That's not secure at all.

I still say it's sufficiently secure if it's a federal database, persists for 30 days only, and law enforcement is only allowed to run serials for guns that have been seized in connection to a crime.


Be aware that means it's utterly unsecured, so anyone with the ability to connect to it can utilize it if that's your only security. The rest of those things are policy decisions, not actual security. It's like putting a "no stealing" sign above an unattended box of money on the street. That ain't secure.

Registries are illegal under the fifth amendment (thankfully) but the real reason they're a bad idea is the potential for abuse. Let's say that you have a natural disaster (e.g. Katrina) and the police chief of Podunk, Mississippi unilaterally decides that the best way to ensure public safety is to confiscate all legally-owned firearms. Now this is entirely illegal, and he probably knows it, but that's not going to stop him from pulling up the Excel spreadsheet and printing out a list of all the addresses where guns are registered to. Sure, he might get in trouble after it's all over (probably just a slap on the wrist), but that's not going to be much of a comfort for the people who were robbed or killed because they couldn't defend themselves against heavily-armed looters.

And this doesn't even begin to address the ultimate danger of a registry leading to a ban.

But you don't have the same potential for abuse with my proposal. Sure, serial numbers are ordered sequentially, but that doesn't mean they necessarily correlate to geography. If it's a federal database that can only be accessed through discrete queries, it can't very well be brute-forced. Querying random serial numbers using fictitious case numbers would not only be quite illegal, but it would have a very low chance of yielding anything useful, as only a very small percentage of total firearm transfers in the past 30 days will be anywhere near the jurisdiction of whoever is querying.

I really just don't see the potential for abuse here.


If the data is insecure, you have no guarantee that it actually goes away at the end of 30 days. If it can leave your system arbitrarily to whoever, anyone who wants the data can do whatever with it.

As mentioned, you do not need to query random numbers. Also, you seem to have the idea that this database is local. It is not, it is nationwide. There is no limitation that only returns sales that happened within your jurisdiction.

And frankly, if there was, it'd make the whole system trivially useless. Police jurisdictions are small, and the odds that a gun was purchased in the last thirty days in the same jurisdiction as the crime occurred is actually pretty miniscule.

Is it not entirely possible that a friend of acquaintance might not bring up their criminal record in casual conversation? You're getting severe false positive issues here...changing the burden of proof is a big deal.

Surely there's some balance or scale that can be employed; it doesn't need to be a felony no matter what. Is SOME requirement to exercise due diligence so very unreasonable?


Yes. Abandoning the standard of innocent until proven guilty is extremely unreasonable.

Intent can be inferred from actions. It is so frequently under the existing legal system. We do not need to gut all our safeguards for that.

davidstarlingm wrote:Uh, running a query is a pretty obvious defense to a charge of negligence.

Yes. A positive defense. How do you demonstrate that a query was run, and that you did it? Does the public number record your call? Are these records available to you at the time of the court case?

In case of your 'erased after 30 days', I'm going to go with probably not.

It could be something so simple as providing a confirmation number after a successful query is run. Or you could have a statutory presumption of due diligence for any transfers more than 30 days old. Besides, in most cases the firearm would have been seized, which would have resulted in a query being run by law enforcement, and the results of that query will be accessible by discovery.


The first is inherently problematic, because you need some record of confirmation numbers to prove validity(which would inherently end up being a sort of record), or people could give whatever number they want, and it's unenforceable.

The second just makes the whole thing hilarious irrelevant. Over 30 days = no record. No call = no record. How do you differentiate between these cases?

I don't even see how the police department query would matter. It doesn't prove anything with regards to intent or knowledge.

If you can't track it, what's the point for requiring checks on transfers?

A simple layer of security, that's all. It won't deter legal purchasers; it might deter criminals and would-be criminals. And checks would only be required for FFL sales, after all.


Why and how? Saying "security" is great, but I want actual examples of what it secures against. What is no longer possible thanks to this security?

So? "decrease legal sales" is not "decreased sales".

If a criminal is going to acquire ammunition, do you want that criminal to acquire ammunition through legal venues or illegal venues?


I really couldn't care less. If he has ammo, he has ammo. Given that criminal use of ammo is negligible in quantity, it'll never matter.

davidstarlingm wrote:
Regarding ammo - no, that wouldn't impinge my range day. It also wouldn't impinge Crazy McSpreeshooter's "range" day, either. And it wouldn't stop Sane McCriminalshooter's ability to get ammo through theft or straw purchases, and with ammo, you've got hundreds or thousands of discrete units. With firearms, you actually have a vague hope of stopping or noticing straw purchases.

There are two things at issue here. First, Crazy McSpreeshooter will very possibly be nervous or act more suspiciously. Since he very likely wishes to keep his preparations as clandestine as possible, he may believe that purchasing from multiple retailers will "throw off" suspicion, which means there will be more opportunities for someone to notice. The additional step is not significant for you, but it may be significant for him. For Sane McCriminalshooter, it means he will have to go to the much greater additional step of seeking out a straw buyer, which is definitely an added impediment.


Crazy McSpreeShooter acts freaking crazy right now. It is quite common for them to be outright denied sales or have cops called because they were acting weird. Looking back on recent shootings, they all seemed pretty damned far outside normality. The problem isn't that we need laws to make them nervous. The problem is that nobody is acting on the warning signs.

No spree shooter needs to purchase from multiple retailers. Purchasing from multiple retailers is something normal shooters do all the time. Seriously, lots of people shop at more than one store. Plus, this isn't even based on anything factual, you're merely hoping that laws will randomly induce unrelated irrational acts. What?

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LaserGuy
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Re: Gun Control

Postby LaserGuy » Thu Sep 26, 2013 2:52 pm UTC

davidstarlingm wrote:
Tyndmyr wrote:I don't see anything in your proposal that would add time for someone intent on a mass shooting though.


Add jail time? Or increase the amount of time it would take for them to acquire the necessary tools? That would be part of the intent of the "NICS queries on ammunition purposes" provision. Not that our mass shooter couldn't simply manufacture his own ammo....but that would increase the amount of time involved, now wouldn't it?


I don't think that jail time matters. Arrests of spree killers aren't all that common--they often are shot or commit suicide in the course of the spree. Moreover, since these types of people don't typically have criminal records anyway, it's unlikely that a red flag would come up in the system.

davidstarlingm wrote:Yeah. There's not much that can be done about loss, theft, or illegal sales, short of requiring total registration (which is a horrible, horrible idea for a myriad of reasons). But straw purchasing represents the largest potentially preventable movement of firearms into criminal hands.

Registries are illegal under the fifth amendment (thankfully) but the real reason they're a bad idea is the potential for abuse. Let's say that you have a natural disaster (e.g. Katrina) and the police chief of Podunk, Mississippi unilaterally decides that the best way to ensure public safety is to confiscate all legally-owned firearms. Now this is entirely illegal, and he probably knows it, but that's not going to stop him from pulling up the Excel spreadsheet and printing out a list of all the addresses where guns are registered to. Sure, he might get in trouble after it's all over (probably just a slap on the wrist), but that's not going to be much of a comfort for the people who were robbed or killed because they couldn't defend themselves against heavily-armed looters.

And this doesn't even begin to address the ultimate danger of a registry leading to a ban.


I think without a real registry, a piecemeal solution like you are proposing is probably not going to have a significant effect. It's too easy to work around it. My inclination would be to work the problem in the other direction--make firearms registration universal, but make the registry more difficult to query. Heck, use the NSA model (which is apparently, supposedly, 5th Amendment compliant)--the registry is held by a third party independent of law enforcement, and you need a warrant to query it. The NSA probably already has this information already anyway, but that's a discussion for another thread.

I appreciate that a registry of any kind is probably not going to be politically palatable in the United States. This is more an issue related to the gun culture thing I alluded to earlier; other countries have registries and it isn't a problem.

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davidstarlingm
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Re: Gun Control

Postby davidstarlingm » Thu Sep 26, 2013 6:18 pm UTC

Tyndmyr wrote:Seriously, anyone intent on a mass shooting gives no fucks about jail time. Mass Murders already get all the jail time we can give.

You could add more jail time to straw purchasing, but at 10 years per offense right now(and a quarter million dollar fine), that's already pretty damned significant. Anyone doing it now is already counting on not being caught.

Right, I'm not advocating increases in jail time as any part of my proposal(s). That wouldn't really change much of anything.

Manufacturing a couple hundred rounds doesn't take long at all. More reasonably, anyone with guns around can be expected to have a coupla hundred rounds already loaded. It's not as if people wait to buy gas until they need to use their car. The same is true of ammo.

If a criminal is going to acquire ammunition, do you want that criminal to acquire ammunition through legal venues or illegal venues?

I really couldn't care less. If he has ammo, he has ammo. Given that criminal use of ammo is negligible in quantity, it'll never matter.

I'm not sure why anyone would really object to placing a potential impediment between criminals and ammo that doesn't otherwise affect law-abiding citizens.

It's also really hard to prove the transfer at all. What distinguishes loss or theft from an illegal sale?

Preventing straw purchasing requires a way to differentiate it from those other things, though. Someone does a straw purchase and claims it was loss or theft if it ever comes to court, how do you prove him wrong?

The same things that do now.

Free access is fine. Changing the burden of proof to the accused is a very, very scary precedent.

I'm glad we agree free access is fine.

I'm not even sure we need to change the burden of proof in a criminal proceeding. We can establish civil liability for a person who sells a firearm to a felon without exercising due diligence. I can be held liable for selling alcohol to a minor, can't I?

I still say it's sufficiently secure if it's a federal database, persists for 30 days only, and law enforcement is only allowed to run serials for guns that have been seized in connection to a crime.

Be aware that means it's utterly unsecured, so anyone with the ability to connect to it can utilize it if that's your only security. The rest of those things are policy decisions, not actual security. It's like putting a "no stealing" sign above an unattended box of money on the street. That ain't secure.

An unattended box of money on the street? I'm not sure that's an accurate analogy.

It's in a closed-access federal database and the only way of running a query on it is to present an authenticated request from an actual law enforcement agency referencing a valid case number.

If the data is insecure, you have no guarantee that it actually goes away at the end of 30 days. If it can leave your system arbitrarily to whoever, anyone who wants the data can do whatever with it.

I'm sure it's trivial to design a system in which data is automatically deleted after 30 days.

And it doesn't leave the system arbitrarily to anyone. It leaves the system when there is a match to the serial number of a weapon seized in connection to a crime, and even then it ends up in a police casefile. How exactly can that be abused?

It could be something so simple as providing a confirmation number after a successful query is run. Or you could have a statutory presumption of due diligence for any transfers more than 30 days old.

The first is inherently problematic, because you need some record of confirmation numbers to prove validity(which would inherently end up being a sort of record), or people could give whatever number they want, and it's unenforceable.

Not at all. The confirmation number can be a secure hash of the serial number, for example. Or you can retain a list of valid confirmation numbers that have no other connection to the query.

The second just makes the whole thing hilarious irrelevant. Over 30 days = no record. No call = no record. How do you differentiate between these cases?

If someone is charged with straw purchasing, I'm pretty certain that the police would be required to say when the supposed incident actually took place.

Besides, in most cases the firearm would have been seized, which would have resulted in a query being run by law enforcement, and the results of that query will be accessible by discovery.

I don't even see how the police department query would matter. It doesn't prove anything with regards to intent or knowledge.

If a police department query comes back with a hit, referencing a transfer from the accused party to another person who is not a felon, then that's an immediate defense. If the hit references an "all clear" that was made in error, that is also a defense. And so forth.

If you can't track it, what's the point for requiring checks on transfers?

A simple layer of security, that's all. It won't deter legal purchasers; it might deter criminals and would-be criminals. And checks would only be required for FFL sales, after all.

Why and how? Saying "security" is great, but I want actual examples of what it secures against. What is no longer possible thanks to this security?

It would no longer be possible for a felon to walk into Walmart and purchase handgun ammunition. I'm not sure what's so bad about that.

LaserGuy wrote:Heck, use the NSA model (which is apparently, supposedly, 5th Amendment compliant)--the registry is held by a third party independent of law enforcement, and you need a warrant to query it. The NSA probably already has this information already anyway, but that's a discussion for another thread.

Under the fifth amendment, registration cannot be required under penalty of law, because that would mean that a felon who illegally possesses a firearm would be required under penalty of law to testify that he possesses a firearm, which would be forced self-incrimination. I don't think there's any fifth-amendment restriction on the retention of voluntary registration information, though that's problematic from a more direct standpoint.

I think without a real registry, a piecemeal solution like you are proposing is probably not going to have a significant effect. It's too easy to work around it.

My solution allows law enforcement to obtain leads on the sale or transfer of firearms that are subsequently used in a crime, without instituting any permanent registry. It also allows law-abiding private sellers the option of vetting a potential buyer quickly and easily. I don't think either of those things would be completely without effect.

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LaserGuy
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Re: Gun Control

Postby LaserGuy » Fri Sep 27, 2013 3:02 am UTC

davidstarlingm wrote:Under the fifth amendment, registration cannot be required under penalty of law, because that would mean that a felon who illegally possesses a firearm would be required under penalty of law to testify that he possesses a firearm, which would be forced self-incrimination. I don't think there's any fifth-amendment restriction on the retention of voluntary registration information, though that's problematic from a more direct standpoint.


Are you not legally required to register your vehicle in the United States? Births? Deaths? Pets? Businesses?

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addams
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Re: Gun Control

Postby addams » Fri Sep 27, 2013 3:40 am UTC

LaserGuy wrote:
davidstarlingm wrote:Under the fifth amendment, registration cannot be required under penalty of law, because that would mean that a felon who illegally possesses a firearm would be required under penalty of law to testify that he possesses a firearm, which would be forced self-incrimination. I don't think there's any fifth-amendment restriction on the retention of voluntary registration information, though that's problematic from a more direct standpoint.


Are you not legally required to register your vehicle in the United States? Births? Deaths? Pets? Businesses?

Don't worry about the Fifth.
We lost that one, too. Remember?

The Pat Act took the Whole dang thing down.
For some reason the 2nd has the passions of The People.
It may as well be written as the Mass Media and Word of Mouth states it.

Something important enough to kill and die for.
Something The People understand.

Something about; Guns in Cold Dead Hands.
Cold Dead Eyes and Cold Dead Hands.

It is Romantic. We, humans are very susceptible to Romantic Notions.

As we all know the US Constitution is a Quaint and Outdated Document.
The Constitution is not the Law of The Land. Even when it was, it was difficult to enforce.

Gun Control? All that paperwork does not work for some people.
That makes them and us more dangerous. The people that lose their rights to vote and own a gun and who knows what else.
Those people may lose the right to Assistance from Government. Those are some low blows.

Throw out All Gun Control Laws in All States! It is more fair. Back to the Bad Old Days.
If might makes right, then do not take a person's might.

I would like to live in a Nation that does not have such issues. That is not possible. So, next best; Make them Non-Issues.
Take all gun restrictions away. Watch the fireworks. Try not to get shot. It will settle down.

When it does settle down we will have fewer Guns.
That is how Europe developed a sane relationship with the firearm. FireArm. teehee. get it? never mind.

Everyone gets a gun and everyone gets to shoot everyone within some unplanned framework of Prejudice, Fear and Greed.
It will be Fine! (in fifty years or so.)
Life is, just, an exchange of electrons; It is up to us to give it meaning.

We are all in The Gutter.
Some of us see The Gutter.
Some of us see The Stars.
by mr. Oscar Wilde.

Those that want to Know; Know.
Those that do not Know; Don't tell them.
They do terrible things to people that Tell Them.

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Re: Gun Control

Postby Tyndmyr » Fri Sep 27, 2013 4:09 am UTC

davidstarlingm wrote:
Manufacturing a couple hundred rounds doesn't take long at all. More reasonably, anyone with guns around can be expected to have a coupla hundred rounds already loaded. It's not as if people wait to buy gas until they need to use their car. The same is true of ammo.

If a criminal is going to acquire ammunition, do you want that criminal to acquire ammunition through legal venues or illegal venues?

I really couldn't care less. If he has ammo, he has ammo. Given that criminal use of ammo is negligible in quantity, it'll never matter.

I'm not sure why anyone would really object to placing a potential impediment between criminals and ammo that doesn't otherwise affect law-abiding citizens.


"potential" impediment. Will obviously be an actual impediment to purchasers. My state currently is at a six month wait for background checks. That affects me.

Everyone seems to act like background checks are free and instant. They're not. Buying a gun requires hours of filling out forms. I don't want to do that every time I buy ammo, and even if the government soaks the admin costs, Walmart still has to pay the clerk to get me the forms, submit them, and all that bullshit. Long story short, either ammo gets more expensive to compensate for the hassle, or they stop carrying it. Either sucks from the perspective of a legitimate user.

It's also really hard to prove the transfer at all. What distinguishes loss or theft from an illegal sale?

Preventing straw purchasing requires a way to differentiate it from those other things, though. Someone does a straw purchase and claims it was loss or theft if it ever comes to court, how do you prove him wrong?

The same things that do now.


No. Records are kept for 10 years currently. So, no, it wouldn't be the same thing as now. The presence or absence of a background check in your system will no longer be available after a relatively short time, and thus, cannot be used as evidence of a straw sale taking place. In your system, any transaction that took place over 30 days ago will invariably be unverifiable.

Free access is fine. Changing the burden of proof to the accused is a very, very scary precedent.

I'm glad we agree free access is fine.

I'm not even sure we need to change the burden of proof in a criminal proceeding. We can establish civil liability for a person who sells a firearm to a felon without exercising due diligence. I can be held liable for selling alcohol to a minor, can't I?


Selling alcohol to a minor is a crime, not a civil offense. Typically a class 1 misdemeanor. Not really sure what you're attempting to compare here.

I still say it's sufficiently secure if it's a federal database, persists for 30 days only, and law enforcement is only allowed to run serials for guns that have been seized in connection to a crime.

Be aware that means it's utterly unsecured, so anyone with the ability to connect to it can utilize it if that's your only security. The rest of those things are policy decisions, not actual security. It's like putting a "no stealing" sign above an unattended box of money on the street. That ain't secure.

An unattended box of money on the street? I'm not sure that's an accurate analogy.

It's in a closed-access federal database and the only way of running a query on it is to present an authenticated request from an actual law enforcement agency referencing a valid case number.


What, exactly, is a valid case number for these purposes? Police create case numbers, and NCIS checks have no case number associated with them. How are you going to authenticate via case number?

If the data is insecure, you have no guarantee that it actually goes away at the end of 30 days. If it can leave your system arbitrarily to whoever, anyone who wants the data can do whatever with it.

I'm sure it's trivial to design a system in which data is automatically deleted after 30 days.

And it doesn't leave the system arbitrarily to anyone. It leaves the system when there is a match to the serial number of a weapon seized in connection to a crime, and even then it ends up in a police casefile. How exactly can that be abused?


Automated deletion is trivial. However, copying information out of a database is also fairly trivial. Without security limiting access in some way on a by-user basis, you have no accountability, and thus, anyone can arbitrarily copy the entire database at any time.

It could be something so simple as providing a confirmation number after a successful query is run. Or you could have a statutory presumption of due diligence for any transfers more than 30 days old.

The first is inherently problematic, because you need some record of confirmation numbers to prove validity(which would inherently end up being a sort of record), or people could give whatever number they want, and it's unenforceable.

Not at all. The confirmation number can be a secure hash of the serial number, for example. Or you can retain a list of valid confirmation numbers that have no other connection to the query.


Are you keeping records for longer than 30 days or not? Because if the record is not kept, then the confirmation number cannot be validated as matching an actual background check or not.

This problem remains regardless of hashes or whatever else you do.

The second just makes the whole thing hilarious irrelevant. Over 30 days = no record. No call = no record. How do you differentiate between these cases?

If someone is charged with straw purchasing, I'm pretty certain that the police would be required to say when the supposed incident actually took place.


Excellent. Then, I suggest you work on repealing the background check instead. The practical effect will be about the same, and it'll be vastly simpler and cheaper.

Besides, in most cases the firearm would have been seized, which would have resulted in a query being run by law enforcement, and the results of that query will be accessible by discovery.

I don't even see how the police department query would matter. It doesn't prove anything with regards to intent or knowledge.

If a police department query comes back with a hit, referencing a transfer from the accused party to another person who is not a felon, then that's an immediate defense. If the hit references an "all clear" that was made in error, that is also a defense. And so forth.


And if it hits nothing? And the other person is smart enough to claim to have sold it over 30 days ago? Or claims to know nothing about the whole thing, same as a victim of robbery or loss might?

If you can't track it, what's the point for requiring checks on transfers?

A simple layer of security, that's all. It won't deter legal purchasers; it might deter criminals and would-be criminals. And checks would only be required for FFL sales, after all.

Why and how? Saying "security" is great, but I want actual examples of what it secures against. What is no longer possible thanks to this security?

It would no longer be possible for a felon to walk into Walmart and purchase handgun ammunition. I'm not sure what's so bad about that.


So, he buys it down the street at the shop that doesn't sell guns. Or orders it online. He still has access to ammunition. It isn't secured.

LaserGuy wrote:Heck, use the NSA model (which is apparently, supposedly, 5th Amendment compliant)--the registry is held by a third party independent of law enforcement, and you need a warrant to query it. The NSA probably already has this information already anyway, but that's a discussion for another thread.

Under the fifth amendment, registration cannot be required under penalty of law, because that would mean that a felon who illegally possesses a firearm would be required under penalty of law to testify that he possesses a firearm, which would be forced self-incrimination. I don't think there's any fifth-amendment restriction on the retention of voluntary registration information, though that's problematic from a more direct standpoint.


The fifth is a self-incrimination thing, not an anti-registry thing. This does not apply to cars because we don't really have a self incrimination issue there.

I think without a real registry, a piecemeal solution like you are proposing is probably not going to have a significant effect. It's too easy to work around it.

My solution allows law enforcement to obtain leads on the sale or transfer of firearms that are subsequently used in a crime, without instituting any permanent registry. It also allows law-abiding private sellers the option of vetting a potential buyer quickly and easily. I don't think either of those things would be completely without effect.


Note that the CDC considers the existing background check system ineffective. Your version is vastly more filled with ways to evade the checks(which already exist now). I cannot imagine why yours would be effective.

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addams
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Re: Gun Control

Postby addams » Fri Sep 27, 2013 5:15 am UTC

Details, Details.

The truth I have seen with my own little eyes:
1. The people that can and do own guns legally and the people that can and do own guns illegally are
Tweedle Dum and Fucking Tweedle Dee.

The only difference between the two groups is the illegal people are not quite as Puffed Up as the legal people.
I don't like the Puffed Up. My sympathies are with the more humble.

2. The number of Guns that go missing is Huge! How many? I have no idea.
One little old man lost 20 riffles and three hand guns. He still has two hand guns.

He was robbed and he had poorly kept records and a few photos of the guns.
The Police shrugged. They man have been taking mental notes.

Those guns are not going to show up on anyone's registry.

3. The Police are scary guys and they all have guns.
More than guns they have The Right to be Assholes and that is a Right that gets some exercise.

ech. Details. All the snotty people that want the bar set so that they can get over it, but The Other can't;
May suddenly find the bar moved. How did it get this way? What way is it?

I am constantly surprised at who has a gun or two or three or more.
Sweet little blonde, with a gun.
Lovely fresh faced country girl, with a gun.
Little Old Man with failing sight and failing strength, with a gun.
Tough Guys from the city, with a gun.
Bitch with the physique and intellectual talent of The Tweedles, with a gun.
Middle age professionals, with a gun.
Buddy the Redneck, with a gun.
Gangsters, with a gun.
Farmers, with a gun.
Fishermen and fisherwomen, with a gun.

The US has one part of the US Constitution they really like.
The 2nd. We will exercise that one part until it hypertrophies.

The people are afraid. They need guns to feel safe.
If a man has spent time in prison and is released, he has paid his debt.

That man should be able to have a gun in his home. Everyone else does! Everyone, with the exception of me.
When the Police come to his home, the gun is the Police's way of making that man disappear. It seems so wrong to me.

If the Law is going to be used to harm The People, throw the Law out.
The people can hurt one another and cut out the middle man.
Life is, just, an exchange of electrons; It is up to us to give it meaning.

We are all in The Gutter.
Some of us see The Gutter.
Some of us see The Stars.
by mr. Oscar Wilde.

Those that want to Know; Know.
Those that do not Know; Don't tell them.
They do terrible things to people that Tell Them.

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LaserGuy
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Re: Gun Control

Postby LaserGuy » Tue Oct 01, 2013 3:17 am UTC

New York Times is reporting that accidental gun deaths in children are being underreported by almost a factor of two, citing inconsistent state rules for reporting "accidents" and misclassification.

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Re: Gun Control

Postby Tyndmyr » Tue Oct 01, 2013 4:16 am UTC

LaserGuy wrote:New York Times is reporting that accidental gun deaths in children are being underreported by almost a factor of two, citing inconsistent state rules for reporting "accidents" and misclassification.


Ugh, registration wall. Fortunately, easily evaded via coming in from google.

Comparing data between states is indeed sometimes problematic. It's a lot more consistent than comparing data between countries, but it's still imperfect. The US does indeed often default to homicide when other countries may not, for instance, and there's going to be a certain level of subjectivity there. After all, a homicide can certainly be unintentional. It ain't murder, the categories are not exclusive, yet they are often treated as if they are. Really, this is the root of the problem.

This issue is not limited to firearm deaths, and is mentioned in CDC reports on occasion. Fortunately, the CDC does not rely solely on the cause of death, as the NYT seems to think. Intent is taken into account, of course. This is still subjective, naturally, but the CDC is not doing quite so badly as reported. Part of this reason is that the NYT is focusing on the states that had the largest discrepancies, and you'll note that these have fairly small amounts of incidents. For instance, Minnesota, one of their highlighted states, had eight incidents that were officially reported as accidents, and four additional ones the NYT felt should have been reported as accidents. This is over an eight year range. When you're dealing in numbers that small, it's easy to get fairly significant percentage swings, and they're cherry picking the states with what the largest deviations, not showing the average.

Some(mostly anti-gun orgs) also use a different definition of child than is traditional, reporting on those up to and including 19 years of age instead of the usual under 18 bar. This somewhat complicates the discussion, as when you change the sample set, you change the "facts". The larger sample size will get a larger number of deaths, of course, but an increased proportion will be due to crime, violence, drug-related incidents, etc for obvious reasons. Therefore, when comparing stats about "children", it is important to glance at the actual sample set to make sure apples are being compared to apples.

Last but not least...not every shooting by a minor of another minor can be assumed to be an accident. This appears to be an implicit assumption by the NYT, and while it's likely true much of the time, teens can and do kill people in ways that are not accidents. Homicide or even murder may be situationally true where accident is not a good description of the event. Given that the deaths in question are concentrated at the upper end of the age range, it's clear that the cases cited in the article are...not chosen to give an accurate statistical picture.

I lied. One more thing. The kellerman study is portrayed as being relevant to the eddie eagle program. However, it is not actually a study of participants in that program...it merely relies on self reports from children who claim to have any gun training at all. This is obviously very ambiguous, and given that over 90% of children claimed to have training, we have an obvious red flag. The percentage of people in general who have had a gun training class is significantly below 90%, and many of those do not receive training until they are adults. Therefore, either his sample set has a huge selection bias and is garbage...or the kids are lying. The latter seems particularly likely, especially if the children were interviewed after playing with the gun. People tend to justify their actions after the fact, if given the chance, and claiming more knowledge/experience isn't really that rare, especially among young children. Additionally, the sample size was only 64, and of that, a quarter of the kids never encountered the gun, so the true sample size is under 50...at a certain point, it stops being science and is no more than a publicity stunt.

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Re: Gun Control

Postby addams » Wed Oct 02, 2013 3:16 pm UTC

Humans of all ages and stripes will brag.

It is a function of The Culture what they brag about.
Do you have a gun? I asked that question.

I get a lot of 'yes' answers. Not all those people have a gun.
They all want a gun. It is a function of The Culture.

That thing Ghandi said makes more and more sense.
He was asked what he thought of Western Culture.
He answered, "I think it would be a good idea."

That was funny stuff, at the time.
That time was not this time.

A gun culture is the Dominant Culture?
Of course, the guy with the most power controls the conversation.
A gun is concentrated power.

Do I ask the wrong Questions?
Life is, just, an exchange of electrons; It is up to us to give it meaning.

We are all in The Gutter.
Some of us see The Gutter.
Some of us see The Stars.
by mr. Oscar Wilde.

Those that want to Know; Know.
Those that do not Know; Don't tell them.
They do terrible things to people that Tell Them.

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Re: Gun Control

Postby sweeneyrod » Sat Nov 02, 2013 9:11 pm UTC

It seems to me that the culture surrounding guns and their use varies massively between the US, the UK (where I live) and presumably also countries such as Switzerland. Many of the arguments put forward in favour of gun ownership seem to go along the lines of "We need guns so if someone tries to burgle, rob or rape us we can take it out and shoot them." This seems massively different to my idea of what I'd do in the UK if someone tried to mug me: hand over any valuables immediately with minimum fuss and call the police when the mugger is out of sight - I value my life and lack of physical injury higher than any money I might have on me. If someone tried to rob my house, and I had a gun but they didn't, then then that might be a different story, but surely in any society where the general population has access to weaponry, criminals will as well. I just can't imagine anyone in Britain with an attitude of "if someone tries to take my stuff, I'll shoot them" except criminals, so I'm really curious about whether this attitude is prevelant in the US, or whether I'm misunderstanding.

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Re: Gun Control

Postby addams » Sun Nov 03, 2013 3:36 pm UTC

sweeneyrod wrote:It seems to me that the culture surrounding guns and their use varies massively between the US, the UK (where I live) and presumably also countries such as Switzerland. Many of the arguments put forward in favour of gun ownership seem to go along the lines of "We need guns so if someone tries to burgle, rob or rape us we can take it out and shoot them." This seems massively different to my idea of what I'd do in the UK if someone tried to mug me: hand over any valuables immediately with minimum fuss and call the police when the mugger is out of sight - I value my life and lack of physical injury higher than any money I might have on me. If someone tried to rob my house, and I had a gun but they didn't, then then that might be a different story, but surely in any society where the general population has access to weaponry, criminals will as well. I just can't imagine anyone in Britain with an attitude of "if someone tries to take my stuff, I'll shoot them" except criminals, so I'm really curious about whether this attitude is prevelant in the US, or whether I'm misunderstanding.

Honey; You are not misunderstanding.
I am sorry. But; You seem to understand, just fine.

Have you ever heard low class people brag about what they 'would' do?
Well; That is what I hear fairly regularly. It is mostly bragging.

Not always. Barking dogs sometimes bite.
Growling dogs are more dangerous.

I think a good camera with instant web access is a better idea than a gun. (shrug) What do I know?

You are correct in your assesment of what to do in your nation.
In my nation calling the Police could be the very worse thing to do.

I have talked to people that have been robbed by the Police.
Then, the regular run of the mill, low class criminals finished the job.
A fucked up situation for The People.

It has only been a matter of weeks sense I last spoke to a woman that was robbed by the Police.
The Police robbed her and arrested her husband. Of course, the Police took her gun.

She lives two miles off the road beyond NoWhere.
After the Police took what they wanted, other criminals came into her home and took what they wanted.

That woman was a nervous wreck. Poor baby. I could relate.
That is a common story here. It is not a story that is told that way, very often.

I talk to the women. I hold them in my arms and let them cry. When I can.
The Police don't like me to talk to the women, much.

I don't say all that much. Those women are not weak children. Everyone has a breaking point.
Life is, just, an exchange of electrons; It is up to us to give it meaning.

We are all in The Gutter.
Some of us see The Gutter.
Some of us see The Stars.
by mr. Oscar Wilde.

Those that want to Know; Know.
Those that do not Know; Don't tell them.
They do terrible things to people that Tell Them.

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Re: Gun Control

Postby CorruptUser » Sun Nov 03, 2013 5:20 pm UTC

sweeneyrod wrote:It seems to me that the culture surrounding guns and their use varies massively between the US, the UK (where I live) and presumably also countries such as Switzerland. Many of the arguments put forward in favour of gun ownership seem to go along the lines of "We need guns so if someone tries to burgle, rob or rape us we can take it out and shoot them." This seems massively different to my idea of what I'd do in the UK if someone tried to mug me: hand over any valuables immediately with minimum fuss and call the police when the mugger is out of sight - I value my life and lack of physical injury higher than any money I might have on me. If someone tried to rob my house, and I had a gun but they didn't, then then that might be a different story, but surely in any society where the general population has access to weaponry, criminals will as well. I just can't imagine anyone in Britain with an attitude of "if someone tries to take my stuff, I'll shoot them" except criminals, so I'm really curious about whether this attitude is prevelant in the US, or whether I'm misunderstanding.


And if you live in an area where the police response time is about an hour or more, or you live in an area where the police don't give a shit about burglaries?

I grew up with people who ate by the barrel. That is, if they didn't have a rifle, they'd starve. You want to tell them they shouldn't eat because of some city dumbasses with handguns? And if you don't know what is to deal with an enraged bull, don't tell farmers they can't have shotguns.

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Re: Gun Control

Postby Tyndmyr » Sun Nov 03, 2013 7:08 pm UTC

sweeneyrod wrote:It seems to me that the culture surrounding guns and their use varies massively between the US, the UK (where I live) and presumably also countries such as Switzerland. Many of the arguments put forward in favour of gun ownership seem to go along the lines of "We need guns so if someone tries to burgle, rob or rape us we can take it out and shoot them." This seems massively different to my idea of what I'd do in the UK if someone tried to mug me: hand over any valuables immediately with minimum fuss and call the police when the mugger is out of sight - I value my life and lack of physical injury higher than any money I might have on me. If someone tried to rob my house, and I had a gun but they didn't, then then that might be a different story, but surely in any society where the general population has access to weaponry, criminals will as well. I just can't imagine anyone in Britain with an attitude of "if someone tries to take my stuff, I'll shoot them" except criminals, so I'm really curious about whether this attitude is prevelant in the US, or whether I'm misunderstanding.


Oh, it varies massively even within the US, yes. That said, we mostly look on your reaction to weapons with something between puzzlement and horror. Ya'll have been engaged in knife control, even. 'round here, that only exists in the realm of hyperbole.

Also, I note the lack of weapons does not seem to be a significant factor in determining violence within a society. A difference, if one exists at all, is vastly overshadowed by other factors to the point where there is no real certainty that any such effect exists. Thus, there is no reason to assume that a lack of weapons will safeguard either your life or health. Plus, even if overall violence is the same both ways, I'd rather not be the one violence is inflicted on.

Also, if breaking the law isn't a big deal, then at least some criminals will have weaponry. It's not as if making guns is really all that hard.

Additionally, as pointed out by CorruptUser, we are a lot more geographically distributed than most european countries are. Lots of folks who hunt, lots of folks without cops on tap in anything like a reasonable time. Plus, there's that whole bit about cops not being obligated to help you even if you are being attacked. Unfortunate, but it does mean that counting on the police is not a reasonable strategy.

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Re: Gun Control

Postby FLHerne » Sun Nov 03, 2013 9:10 pm UTC

CorruptUser wrote:
sweeneyrod wrote:It seems to me that the culture surrounding guns and their use varies massively between the US, the UK (where I live) and presumably also countries such as Switzerland. Many of the arguments put forward in favour of gun ownership seem to go along the lines of "We need guns so if someone tries to burgle, rob or rape us we can take it out and shoot them." This seems massively different to my idea of what I'd do in the UK if someone tried to mug me: hand over any valuables immediately with minimum fuss and call the police when the mugger is out of sight - I value my life and lack of physical injury higher than any money I might have on me. If someone tried to rob my house, and I had a gun but they didn't, then then that might be a different story, but surely in any society where the general population has access to weaponry, criminals will as well. I just can't imagine anyone in Britain with an attitude of "if someone tries to take my stuff, I'll shoot them" except criminals, so I'm really curious about whether this attitude is prevelant in the US, or whether I'm misunderstanding.

And if you live in an area where the police response time is about an hour or more, or you live in an area where the police don't give a shit about burglaries?

I grew up with people who ate by the barrel. That is, if they didn't have a rifle, they'd starve. You want to tell them they shouldn't eat because of some city dumbasses with handguns? And if you don't know what is to deal with an enraged bull, don't tell farmers they can't have shotguns.

Which is why in the UK we have (generally) pretty good police, a welfare system, and allow farmers to carry long-barreled shotguns. :wink:

"Give everyone near-unregulated access to a huge range of guns" is a terrible way to plaster over the symptoms of your first two problems, and massive overkill for the last one. If arming people is the first solution you think of to people starving on the streets, you Americans actually are crazy!

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Re: Gun Control

Postby Nem » Sun Nov 03, 2013 10:07 pm UTC

Tyndmyr wrote:Also, if breaking the law isn't a big deal, then at least some criminals will have weaponry. It's not as if making guns is really all that hard.


I'd question how many of the sort of people liable to go around shooting people are the sort of people capable of the self-discipline and financial planning to get the tools and skills necessary to make an effective firearm.

A zip gun? Yes. Something for a mass shooting? Not so much.

And even then, ammo is not trivial to make if you don't have the precursors available - making a shotgun shell without access to explosives is somewhat more complicated than making the old pipe and nail boomstick to stick it in.

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Re: Gun Control

Postby CorruptUser » Sun Nov 03, 2013 11:25 pm UTC

FLHerne wrote:Which is why in the UK we have (generally) pretty good police, a welfare system, and allow farmers to carry long-barreled shotguns. :wink:

"Give everyone near-unregulated access to a huge range of guns" is a terrible way to plaster over the symptoms of your first two problems, and massive overkill for the last one. If arming people is the first solution you think of to people starving on the streets, you Americans actually are crazy!


And if you live in an area with slow police time not because the police don't give a shit, but because you live in the middle of Nebraska where your neighbor is miles away?

Every area has its own needs. A blanket ban on firearms is just as stupid as near-unrestricted access to firearms. Personally, I think handguns need to be regulated far more heavily, but considering that shotguns and rifles are rarely used in crime, it's not nearly as much of an issue.

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Re: Gun Control

Postby addams » Mon Nov 04, 2013 4:09 am UTC

Guns. Guns. Guns. Guns.
ech. A big deal?

Can't let it be. We are already Terrified.
-Oh! Did I tell you? I have announced the Winner!

The Terrorists have won; We are Terrified.
We are Terrified of the Men in Blue.
We are Terrified of each other.
We are Terrified of you; And, we haven't even met you, yet.

Guns. I have seen one. Do you believe me?
I have seen people do stupid shit.
I have done some stupid shit my own self.

Gun Control: The best gun control is self control.

Do you want to swap stupid stories?
You know automatic pistols still make a little noise, even when empty. right?
You know we are not supposed to pull the trigger over and over again. right?
It's not good for the gun. It is not good for the person.

That is the self control part. What we do over and over again we can do more easily than what we have never done before.
I have done it. Both with a revolver and with an automatic. It is a stupid thing to do. I always tried to hold it right.

Stupid stories.
There was this guy. He was full of himself.
He scared me. He had an automatic.

He would sit or sit/lie down; He was big on lounging.
It seems to be a low class thing. I sort of understand it.

Low class people like to make a big show of not working.
It is a class thing. Some people fall asleep sitting up after work.
That is different. This guy was not tired. He was an Asshole.

He would sit and click off empty rounds. Maybe he needed to go get ammo. (shrug)
That guy bothered me. I did not like him. I did not like him clicking off empty rounds.

That is a lack of gun control. He was an adult. Yet; When asked to stop clicking off empty rounds he sounded like a little kid.
"It's not Loaded!" "Shut up; It's my gun and I can do what I want." "I'm not hurting you." What an Asshole.

Our people have a class problem. Class is not all in your pocket book. Class is between your ears.
A classy person does not behave like that. That Asshole had money. His parents had money.

What he did not have was 'The Sense God Gave a Goose'.
Gun control begins between the ears.

Hey! You up there in the Thread.
What? Shooting a Bull because it has gone bonkers from an OD of testosterone?
Are Nebraska Bulls nuts? I have never had a bull go nuts on me. Of course, I don't mess with them much.

I think of Bovine as tame. Sure; Any ruminant might go after a person. They are like that.
I have never had a bull go after me. I was petting one on that curly part between its eyes one time.

I did not know the fence was electric. My arm hit the fence and it shocked me and the bull.
We both jumped. He would not let me pet him, anymore. Poor me. That hurt.

What stupid thing have you seen people do with guns.
It can turn into a lack of gun control thread. That is fun.

I already told you about my mother's brother that shot himself without a gun.
I love that story. What an idiot. What a good little human.

"All humans are Scientists. All humans are Artists.
Not all humans are Good Scientists; Not all humans are Good Artists."


He wanted to know what would happen if you put a bullet in a vice.
He found out. It fires. So funny. Stupid no gun story.

Your turn. Let us get control of our guns in laughter.
My family did their part. What has your family done to send peels of laughter into space?
Life is, just, an exchange of electrons; It is up to us to give it meaning.

We are all in The Gutter.
Some of us see The Gutter.
Some of us see The Stars.
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Those that want to Know; Know.
Those that do not Know; Don't tell them.
They do terrible things to people that Tell Them.

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Re: Gun Control

Postby FLHerne » Mon Nov 04, 2013 9:01 am UTC

CorruptUser wrote:
FLHerne wrote:Which is why in the UK we have (generally) pretty good police, a welfare system, and allow farmers to carry long-barreled shotguns. :wink:

"Give everyone near-unregulated access to a huge range of guns" is a terrible way to plaster over the symptoms of your first two problems, and massive overkill for the last one. If arming people is the first solution you think of to people starving on the streets, you Americans actually are crazy!


And if you live in an area with slow police time not because the police don't give a shit, but because you live in the middle of Nebraska where your neighbor is miles away?

Every area has its own needs. A blanket ban on firearms is just as stupid as near-unrestricted access to firearms. Personally, I think handguns need to be regulated far more heavily, but considering that shotguns and rifles are rarely used in crime, it's not nearly as much of an issue.

I can generally agree with thais post - as you say, there are valid and important reasons for people to have firearms, especially in your oversized country. :P

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Re: Gun Control

Postby Ormurinn » Mon Nov 04, 2013 3:16 pm UTC

FLHerne wrote:"Give everyone near-unregulated access to a huge range of guns" is a terrible way to plaster over the symptoms of your first two problems, and massive overkill for the last one. If arming people is the first solution you think of to people starving on the streets, you Americans actually are crazy!


Just FYI, no state in america has "near-unregulated access to a huge range of guns". There are actually a large amount of weapons that are legal in Britain and NI but illegal in California, for instance.

We do have a blanket ban on even sporting hand guns, which is crazy, and a 3-shell limit for Shotgun Certificate guns (no such limit exists on Firearms Certificate shotguns).

On the other hand, it's pretty easy (in regulatory terms - not price) to own a .50BMG anti-materiel rifle in the U.K - as long as it's not semi-automatic you can just add it to your firearms certificate. The same weapon would be illegal in a lot of states.
"Progress" - Technological advances masking societal decay.

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Re: Gun Control

Postby addams » Mon Nov 04, 2013 3:49 pm UTC

Ormurinn wrote:
FLHerne wrote:"Give everyone near-unregulated access to a huge range of guns" is a terrible way to plaster over the symptoms of your first two problems, and massive overkill for the last one. If arming people is the first solution you think of to people starving on the streets, you Americans actually are crazy!


Just FYI, no state in america has "near-unregulated access to a huge range of guns". There are actually a large amount of weapons that are legal in Britain and NI but illegal in California, for instance.

We do have a blanket ban on even sporting hand guns, which is crazy, and a 3-shell limit for Shotgun Certificate guns (no such limit exists on Firearms Certificate shotguns).

On the other hand, it's pretty easy (in regulatory terms - not price) to own a .50BMG anti-materiel rifle in the U.K - as long as it's not semi-automatic you can just add it to your firearms certificate. The same weapon would be illegal in a lot of states.

Yeah?
Are you required to have, The sense God gave a Goose?

How do you measure it? By the pound? (hee heee)
Details. Details.

Men and women of Good Will are not dangerous.
Men and women that hold Malice in their hearts are dangerous.
The number of lethal weapons is only a big deal when the human is of mal-intent.

The Television is a powerful tool.
I have watched men and women watch FOX News,
then stand up and declare that they would murder the president of the US with their own hands, if they could.

"We must protect freedom of speech. That is how we know who the Assholes are."
It is not the number of guns that we have that matters.
What we want to do with those guns, matters.

ech. The number of guns matters, some.
Guns are a pain in the ass. They are such a temptation.
Who has a tool that does not want to at least try the tool?

Good people of good will do the silliest things.
People that have been all worked up by the 24 Hour Scare ya' silly News Hour are mean and tipping on the edge of physical violence.
That seems like bad news to me.

Little old men and women so all worked up.
It is enoght to make me want to reach out and slap them.

See?! We are All effected!
Life is, just, an exchange of electrons; It is up to us to give it meaning.

We are all in The Gutter.
Some of us see The Gutter.
Some of us see The Stars.
by mr. Oscar Wilde.

Those that want to Know; Know.
Those that do not Know; Don't tell them.
They do terrible things to people that Tell Them.

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Re: Gun Control

Postby leady » Mon Nov 04, 2013 3:59 pm UTC

sweeneyrod wrote:It seems to me that the culture surrounding guns and their use varies massively between the US, the UK (where I live) and presumably also countries such as Switzerland. Many of the arguments put forward in favour of gun ownership seem to go along the lines of "We need guns so if someone tries to burgle, rob or rape us we can take it out and shoot them." This seems massively different to my idea of what I'd do in the UK if someone tried to mug me: hand over any valuables immediately with minimum fuss and call the police when the mugger is out of sight - I value my life and lack of physical injury higher than any money I might have on me. If someone tried to rob my house, and I had a gun but they didn't, then then that might be a different story, but surely in any society where the general population has access to weaponry, criminals will as well. I just can't imagine anyone in Britain with an attitude of "if someone tries to take my stuff, I'll shoot them" except criminals, so I'm really curious about whether this attitude is prevelant in the US, or whether I'm misunderstanding.


I'm from the UK and I'm the polar opposite to yourself and if you ask around you'll find a lot of people that are in the same bag (they may be brainwashed against firearms, but see the fairly recent attempt to change "reasonable force" to "any means required" ).

But then I also hate the police advice of "don't approach xyz if spotted", I understand why from their perspectice (some good / some bad) but I think society would be a huge amount better if everyone intervened all the time from a cultural perspective

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Re: Gun Control

Postby davidstarlingm » Mon Nov 04, 2013 5:02 pm UTC

Am I the only one who is annoyed when reporters repeatedly refer to semi-automatic rifles as "assault rifles"?

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Re: Gun Control

Postby sardia » Mon Nov 04, 2013 5:02 pm UTC

Ormurinn wrote:
FLHerne wrote:"Give everyone near-unregulated access to a huge range of guns" is a terrible way to plaster over the symptoms of your first two problems, and massive overkill for the last one. If arming people is the first solution you think of to people starving on the streets, you Americans actually are crazy!


Just FYI, no state in america has "near-unregulated access to a huge range of guns". There are actually a large amount of weapons that are legal in Britain and NI but illegal in California, for instance.

We do have a blanket ban on even sporting hand guns, which is crazy, and a 3-shell limit for Shotgun Certificate guns (no such limit exists on Firearms Certificate shotguns).

On the other hand, it's pretty easy (in regulatory terms - not price) to own a .50BMG anti-materiel rifle in the U.K - as long as it's not semi-automatic you can just add it to your firearms certificate. The same weapon would be illegal in a lot of states.

I thought they were legal anywhere except California?

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Re: Gun Control

Postby Nem » Mon Nov 04, 2013 5:19 pm UTC

davidstarlingm wrote:Am I the only one who is annoyed when reporters repeatedly refer to semi-automatic rifles as "assault rifles"?


That used to bug me too, but the quality of reporting has gotten so bad that I rarely read more than the headlines these days so... -shrugs-

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Re: Gun Control

Postby davidstarlingm » Mon Nov 04, 2013 6:03 pm UTC

Nem wrote:
davidstarlingm wrote:Am I the only one who is annoyed when reporters repeatedly refer to semi-automatic rifles as "assault rifles"?


That used to bug me too, but the quality of reporting has gotten so bad that I rarely read more than the headlines these days so... -shrugs-

I wish I had access to all articles everywhere and could replace every incorrect use of "assault rifle" with "small-caliber single-shot rodent-hunting rifle with black plastic fittings to make it look like a military weapon".

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Re: Gun Control

Postby Tyndmyr » Mon Nov 04, 2013 6:46 pm UTC

FLHerne wrote:Which is why in the UK we have (generally) pretty good police, a welfare system, and allow farmers to carry long-barreled shotguns. :wink:

"Give everyone near-unregulated access to a huge range of guns" is a terrible way to plaster over the symptoms of your first two problems, and massive overkill for the last one. If arming people is the first solution you think of to people starving on the streets, you Americans actually are crazy!


It isn't a new solution, it's the status quo. People have been hunting for food basically since we became human. Yes, better police, etc would be lovely. Removing the guns will not cause that.

Nem wrote:
Tyndmyr wrote:Also, if breaking the law isn't a big deal, then at least some criminals will have weaponry. It's not as if making guns is really all that hard.


I'd question how many of the sort of people liable to go around shooting people are the sort of people capable of the self-discipline and financial planning to get the tools and skills necessary to make an effective firearm.

A zip gun? Yes. Something for a mass shooting? Not so much.

And even then, ammo is not trivial to make if you don't have the precursors available - making a shotgun shell without access to explosives is somewhat more complicated than making the old pipe and nail boomstick to stick it in.


I'll point out that while it's of questionable legality in many areas, activities such as making a potato gun are fairly commonplace even now.

The maker may not be the same person as the shooter, of course. In many parts of the world, making AK-47s is a cottage/tent industry. The maker typically sells them to the user. The average meth addict can't make meth, but there's still a crapton of meth out there.

Ormurinn wrote:
FLHerne wrote:"Give everyone near-unregulated access to a huge range of guns" is a terrible way to plaster over the symptoms of your first two problems, and massive overkill for the last one. If arming people is the first solution you think of to people starving on the streets, you Americans actually are crazy!


Just FYI, no state in america has "near-unregulated access to a huge range of guns". There are actually a large amount of weapons that are legal in Britain and NI but illegal in California, for instance.

We do have a blanket ban on even sporting hand guns, which is crazy, and a 3-shell limit for Shotgun Certificate guns (no such limit exists on Firearms Certificate shotguns).

On the other hand, it's pretty easy (in regulatory terms - not price) to own a .50BMG anti-materiel rifle in the U.K - as long as it's not semi-automatic you can just add it to your firearms certificate. The same weapon would be illegal in a lot of states.


A number of shotguns, depending on length, are perfectly legal in canada, but not anywhere in the US without extensive, machine-gun level licensing. It is messy and complicated, and different localities tend to take very different approaches depending on what type of firearm is currently being villified. Right now, it's the "assault weapon". Pretty much any type of gun has had it's turn at being blamed in the past, tho.

davidstarlingm wrote:Am I the only one who is annoyed when reporters repeatedly refer to semi-automatic rifles as "assault rifles"?


Firearm reporting is possibly even worse than science and technology reporting. I tend to be fairly doubtful of any identification of a firearm unless pictures accompany the description, because they are so often flat out wrong. "assault rifle" has gained popularity, but lacks any real definition. There are two definitions that might be credible...namely, the military definition, and the definition from Clinton's assault weapon ban. Neither matches current usage well, though. So...it's just a buzzword. Kind of meaningless. Often used when no rifle was even involved, as per the Navy Yard shooting.
Last edited by Tyndmyr on Tue Nov 05, 2013 1:14 pm UTC, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Gun Control

Postby davidstarlingm » Mon Nov 04, 2013 6:59 pm UTC

Tyndmyr wrote:
davidstarlingm wrote:Am I the only one who is annoyed when reporters repeatedly refer to semi-automatic rifles as "assault rifles"?

Firearm reporting is possibly even worse than science and technology reporting. I tend to be fairly doubtful of any identification of a firearm unless pictures accompany the description, because they are so often flat out wrong. "assault rifle" has gained popularity, but lacks any real definition. There are two definitions that might be credible...namely, the military definition, and the definition from Clinton's assault weapon ban. Neither matches current usage well, though. So...it's just a buzzword. Kind of meaningless. Often used when no rifle was even involved, as per the Navy Yard shooting.

It's always been my understanding that "assault rifle" refers to any small-caliber rifle with a full-length barrel and selective-fire capacity, "assault carbine" is a short-barreled assault rifle, and "assault weapon" is a nebulous category involving any semiautomatic removable-magazine firearm with a vaguely military appearance.

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Re: Gun Control

Postby Nem » Mon Nov 04, 2013 9:11 pm UTC

Tyndmyr wrote:I'll point out that while it's of questionable legality in many areas, activities such as making a potato gun are fairly commonplace even now.

The maker may not be the same person as the shooter, of course. In many parts of the world, making AK-47s is a cottage/tent industry. The maker typically sells them to the user. The average meth addict can't make meth, but there's still a crapton of meth out there.


But are they fairly commonplace among low level criminals? That's my point. If I thought criminals were the type to spend their childhood tinkering in sheds with potato guns, then I'd be much more worried about them making their own firearms. But does a childhood of tinkering in the shed give you criminal friends? Making weapons, or indeed any vaguely complex artefact or procedure, seems to me to require a certain state of mind. If they had that state of mind, I suspect they'd either not be criminals, or would be the type of criminals who have little need for guns. If you want someone dead, and you're smart - but for some reason or other really need them dead, then you mail them a bunch of grenades with a half-second fuse or something. "Let's see what's in the tube that came this morn - Ping! - BOOM." It's not hard to kill people - post office doesn't inspect civilian post very closely.

If someone smart and with a bit of the devil in them really wants someone dead, they're dead - no earthly force gonna save them. Guns are most commonly, in a civilian context, weapons of opportunity and poor planning. Someone holding up a 7/11 with one isn't paying his mortgage with the takings, he might be supporting his drug-addiction, but that's very much a feedback loop in the poor-planning department.

It's true that the maker may not be the shooter. But what does the maker of a gun have to gain from the transaction? A little money, perhaps - but there are more profitable things they could be doing with their time and firearms related offences are a relatively high-risk occupation; if you start flooding the local market with knock-off M16s, you will attract attention. First person they take alive with one the first thing they're gonna ask him: "Where'd ya' get it from?" People will be offered things and they'll talk - and then you're hung.

Bar organised crime, that can provide appropriate opsec for their activities, I think a gun-maker would be foolish to market their products to low-level criminals. The only reason I can think of for someone with those sorts of skills to market them to criminals is social - and I don't see why tinker-y sneak-y people would be in the right circles for it.

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Re: Gun Control

Postby morriswalters » Mon Nov 04, 2013 9:32 pm UTC

Why would you build a gun? When guns were expensive and fairly rare people did make guns of all types. The FBI used to have a small museum of handmade guns, at the start of the FBI facility tour, in DC. They are so cheap today and so many are available it seems pointless. Stolen guns are available on the street, at will. All those legal owners can't seem to hold on to them.

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Re: Gun Control

Postby juststrange » Tue Nov 05, 2013 11:40 am UTC

I built my rifles for 3 reasons:

1. I have an engineering degree and I like to tinker

2. It was cheaper than buying one from a shop

3. If you were to buy/sell/transfer an AK style rifle in Maryland, there is a ton of paperwork and registration involved. With the new laws I think its outright barred. That said, getting all the parts, less the receiver, shipped to my house by FedEx was easy. Bending a flat bit of sheetmetal into a U shape brought the receiver (and as far as the law is concerned, the gun) into existence from the ether. Put on my parts, perfectly legal rifle, with none of the paperwork hassle. That said, I cannot sell or transfer it without registering it, but its mine, its gonna stay mine, and nobody needs to know that I have it less the ones I tell.

Thats me going through retailers online. Your mileage may vary.

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Re: Gun Control

Postby Tyndmyr » Tue Nov 05, 2013 1:31 pm UTC

davidstarlingm wrote:
Tyndmyr wrote:
davidstarlingm wrote:Am I the only one who is annoyed when reporters repeatedly refer to semi-automatic rifles as "assault rifles"?

Firearm reporting is possibly even worse than science and technology reporting. I tend to be fairly doubtful of any identification of a firearm unless pictures accompany the description, because they are so often flat out wrong. "assault rifle" has gained popularity, but lacks any real definition. There are two definitions that might be credible...namely, the military definition, and the definition from Clinton's assault weapon ban. Neither matches current usage well, though. So...it's just a buzzword. Kind of meaningless. Often used when no rifle was even involved, as per the Navy Yard shooting.

It's always been my understanding that "assault rifle" refers to any small-caliber rifle with a full-length barrel and selective-fire capacity, "assault carbine" is a short-barreled assault rifle, and "assault weapon" is a nebulous category involving any semiautomatic removable-magazine firearm with a vaguely military appearance.


Generally, yes. One could reasonably use the commonalities of the military definitions to arrive at a definition of assault weapons in general though(ie small caliber and select fire). While reasonable, this does not seem to match media usage, and the media definition is essentially undefined. An AR-15 appears to always be classified as an assault weapon by them. Shotguns usually are not, unless in the context of violence. That said, they frequently misidentify types of guns...for instance, it is extremely common for guns to be misidentified as AR-15s, even if they are not a rifle at all. So, the term is essentially useless.

Nem wrote:
Tyndmyr wrote:I'll point out that while it's of questionable legality in many areas, activities such as making a potato gun are fairly commonplace even now.

The maker may not be the same person as the shooter, of course. In many parts of the world, making AK-47s is a cottage/tent industry. The maker typically sells them to the user. The average meth addict can't make meth, but there's still a crapton of meth out there.


But are they fairly commonplace among low level criminals? That's my point. If I thought criminals were the type to spend their childhood tinkering in sheds with potato guns, then I'd be much more worried about them making their own firearms. But does a childhood of tinkering in the shed give you criminal friends? Making weapons, or indeed any vaguely complex artefact or procedure, seems to me to require a certain state of mind. If they had that state of mind, I suspect they'd either not be criminals, or would be the type of criminals who have little need for guns. If you want someone dead, and you're smart - but for some reason or other really need them dead, then you mail them a bunch of grenades with a half-second fuse or something. "Let's see what's in the tube that came this morn - Ping! - BOOM." It's not hard to kill people - post office doesn't inspect civilian post very closely.


Depends on the type of criminal. Urban criminals, not so much. That's because building potato guns, etc tends to be more of a rural hobby. We have historical evidence here...zip guns have risen and fell in popularity in the criminal world with access to firearms, etc. You don't have to be a non-criminal to make things...if that were true, then nobody would make meth.

Sure, bombs are a thing, and they are rather dangerous, but in actual practice, they see a lot less use than firearms. It isn't because bombs are hard to make...they really aren't. Iraq, etc seemed to have no trouble making bombs, obviously. The difference is cultural...the suicide bomber isn't a big thing here, thankfully. People tend to carry firearms for different reasons than people embraced bombing. Personally, I wouldn't trade these cultural things...firearms at least have some degree of precision, while bombs are really, really indiscriminate.

Nem wrote:If someone smart and with a bit of the devil in them really wants someone dead, they're dead - no earthly force gonna save them. Guns are most commonly, in a civilian context, weapons of opportunity and poor planning. Someone holding up a 7/11 with one isn't paying his mortgage with the takings, he might be supporting his drug-addiction, but that's very much a feedback loop in the poor-planning department.


Most people, criminal or not, are not assassins. Firearm use patterns just don't reflect that. They're not buying guns specifically to kill a specific people, they're buying a gun to have a gun around. Most firearms used in crime are not acquired legally, so there would be fairly little change. If a dude bought a gun from a black market dealer, he'd do the exact same even if legal gun purchasing were different in some way. The fellow making the guns would not likely be the sort of person breaking into 7-11s. He'd be someone who was tempted by easy money.

Nem wrote:It's true that the maker may not be the shooter. But what does the maker of a gun have to gain from the transaction? A little money, perhaps - but there are more profitable things they could be doing with their time and firearms related offences are a relatively high-risk occupation; if you start flooding the local market with knock-off M16s, you will attract attention. First person they take alive with one the first thing they're gonna ask him: "Where'd ya' get it from?" People will be offered things and they'll talk - and then you're hung.


These objections also apply to meth dealers, yet people still cook meth. Making meth is probably harder than making a functional gun, too.

morriswalters wrote:Why would you build a gun? When guns were expensive and fairly rare people did make guns of all types. The FBI used to have a small museum of handmade guns, at the start of the FBI facility tour, in DC. They are so cheap today and so many are available it seems pointless. Stolen guns are available on the street, at will. All those legal owners can't seem to hold on to them.


Well, gun making mostly applies to arguments about restriction of supply. If supply is sufficiently restricted, we'll see a resurgence of gun making, because there will be more profit to be had. Right now, yeah...it's not a big deal.

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Re: Gun Control

Postby davidstarlingm » Tue Nov 05, 2013 6:06 pm UTC

Tyndmyr wrote:One could reasonably use the commonalities of the military definitions to arrive at a definition of assault weapons in general though(ie small caliber and select fire). While reasonable, this does not seem to match media usage, and the media definition is essentially undefined. An AR-15 appears to always be classified as an assault weapon by them. Shotguns usually are not, unless in the context of violence. That said, they frequently misidentify types of guns...for instance, it is extremely common for guns to be misidentified as AR-15s, even if they are not a rifle at all. So, the term is essentially useless.

It really is. The legal definition in the old AWB really boils down to "the gun that some people with military experience would choose for urban combat if they couldn't have a real assault rifle". Which is nice and all, but doesn't tell us anything about the lethality of the weapon compared to other weapons.

A pump action shotgun loaded with buckshot fires more projectiles for each action on the part of a user than an AR-15. I'd so much rather be shot 5-6 times in the torso with an AR-15 than take half of one buckshot blast at close range.

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Re: Gun Control

Postby Thesh » Tue Nov 05, 2013 7:29 pm UTC

davidstarlingm wrote:A pump action shotgun loaded with buckshot fires more projectiles for each action on the part of a user than an AR-15. I'd so much rather be shot 5-6 times in the torso with an AR-15 than take half of one buckshot blast at close range.


5-6 shots with an AR-15 will be more devastating than buckshot. Although the caliber is smaller than 00 buck, the velocity is 2-3 times as high (and E = mv2/2), and the FMJ bullets have a tendency to yaw and fragment; ammo designed for defense will tear your insides apart.

That said, they ban scary rifles because they can; they ask "why do you need it" rather than "what exactly would it accomplish" and that debate gets drowned out by "2nd amendment" and "good guy with a gun" or "Nazis!".

I would probably support a ban of handguns if we aren't going to fix our underlying social problems; that would at least have a real, noticeable effect. Even if you banned all semi-auto rifles, a lever action and different tactics could just as easily give you the same death toll as mass shooters tend to have today.
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Re: Gun Control

Postby Tyndmyr » Tue Nov 05, 2013 7:55 pm UTC

davidstarlingm wrote:
Tyndmyr wrote:One could reasonably use the commonalities of the military definitions to arrive at a definition of assault weapons in general though(ie small caliber and select fire). While reasonable, this does not seem to match media usage, and the media definition is essentially undefined. An AR-15 appears to always be classified as an assault weapon by them. Shotguns usually are not, unless in the context of violence. That said, they frequently misidentify types of guns...for instance, it is extremely common for guns to be misidentified as AR-15s, even if they are not a rifle at all. So, the term is essentially useless.

It really is. The legal definition in the old AWB really boils down to "the gun that some people with military experience would choose for urban combat if they couldn't have a real assault rifle". Which is nice and all, but doesn't tell us anything about the lethality of the weapon compared to other weapons.

A pump action shotgun loaded with buckshot fires more projectiles for each action on the part of a user than an AR-15. I'd so much rather be shot 5-6 times in the torso with an AR-15 than take half of one buckshot blast at close range.


I wouldn't. The shotgun is overrated for home defence, etc. 00 buck is what, nine pellets in a standard 12ga load? Can be as few as three in a .410. Now, they're roughly equivalent in size to .32 caliber, but they're round balls, so they dump energy rather quickly, and they start out at a lower velocity than the AR rounds by a large margin. Plus, at close range, they haven't really spread out. When they have spread out, you generally miss with several pellets and they're moving a lot slower. Now, a shotgun can certainly still be used for home defense, etc, but there are very, very good reasons why SWAT teams use ARs instead of shotguns for everyone but the door breacher. You'll also note that, after breaching, the shotgunner often transitions to an AR for the actual room clearing. At a minimum, they get out of the way and let the others go first.

The reasons to use a shotgun generally boil down to them being cheaper and more available and what not. Those are legitimate factors, but while I wouldn't want to take rounds from anything, I'll assume that 4-5 AR rounds to torso is probable death.

Thesh wrote:I would probably support a ban of handguns if we aren't going to fix our underlying social problems; that would at least have a real, noticeable effect. Even if you banned all semi-auto rifles, a lever action and different tactics could just as easily give you the same death toll as mass shooters tend to have today.


I definitely get what you're saying, but I still have at least some hope that the underlying social problems can be fixed. Some we've made progress on, even. Yeah, slow, messy progress that often is done poorly, but still...it's easy to get mired down in how imperfect things are now, and lose sight of the progress made.

I note that several mass shooters have indeed used weapons other than ARs. Handguns are not uncommon. Shotguns are represented. Neither of the kids at columbine had an AR, and one of them was primarily using a shotgun. Naval yard shooting was a shotgun. Realistically, when one side is unarmed, unprepared, and entirely unaware, and attacked by someone intent on racking up a body count...the type of firearm used is almost irrelevant. 10 rounds a mag, 30 rounds, a hundred rounds, pumping or not...it's still brutally unfair. The difference in the power imbalance is not significantly altered.

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Re: Gun Control

Postby Nem » Tue Nov 05, 2013 8:04 pm UTC

Tyndmyr wrote:Depends on the type of criminal. Urban criminals, not so much. That's because building potato guns, etc tends to be more of a rural hobby. We have historical evidence here...zip guns have risen and fell in popularity in the criminal world with access to firearms, etc. You don't have to be a non-criminal to make things...if that were true, then nobody would make meth.


Nem wrote:[I can see them making...]

A zip gun? Yes. Something for a mass shooting? Not so much.

And even then, ammo is not trivial to make if you don't have the precursors available - making a shotgun shell without access to explosives is somewhat more complicated than making the old pipe and nail boomstick to stick it in.


Aren't most firearm problems in urban areas anyway?

It's true people make meth, but making it yourself rather than somewhere much higher on the criminal supply chain - as far as I know - has only recently become popular with a massively simplified 'shake-and-bake' process.

Tyndmyr wrote:Most people, criminal or not, are not assassins. Firearm use patterns just don't reflect that. They're not buying guns specifically to kill a specific people, they're buying a gun to have a gun around. Most firearms used in crime are not acquired legally, so there would be fairly little change. If a dude bought a gun from a black market dealer, he'd do the exact same even if legal gun purchasing were different in some way. The fellow making the guns would not likely be the sort of person breaking into 7-11s. He'd be someone who was tempted by easy money.


Making guns is a fair few hours work, and metal and machine tools are fairly expensive. How much is having an M16 over a zipgun worth to a criminal, and what sort of profit does the gunmaker have to make to justify his risk from police and his investment in time and materials?

It doesn't sound like easy money.

Tyndmyr wrote:These objections also apply to meth dealers, yet people still cook meth. Making meth is probably harder than making a functional gun, too.


I would imagine that the value of meth is huge enough to make up for the risk. A quick search suggests we're talking $800-1,000 an ounce.

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Re: Gun Control

Postby Tyndmyr » Tue Nov 05, 2013 8:22 pm UTC

Nem wrote:
Tyndmyr wrote:Depends on the type of criminal. Urban criminals, not so much. That's because building potato guns, etc tends to be more of a rural hobby. We have historical evidence here...zip guns have risen and fell in popularity in the criminal world with access to firearms, etc. You don't have to be a non-criminal to make things...if that were true, then nobody would make meth.


Nem wrote:[I can see them making...]

A zip gun? Yes. Something for a mass shooting? Not so much.

And even then, ammo is not trivial to make if you don't have the precursors available - making a shotgun shell without access to explosives is somewhat more complicated than making the old pipe and nail boomstick to stick it in.


Aren't most firearm problems in urban areas anyway?

It's true people make meth, but making it yourself rather than somewhere much higher on the criminal supply chain - as far as I know - has only recently become popular with a massively simplified 'shake-and-bake' process.


We would likely see a similar distribution of manufacturers with firearms. Simple zip guns could be made by anyone(some kids got busted making and selling zip guns recently, was a minor news article). Lowers and other fairly easy to make pieces for more professional firearms would be somewhat less common, but still really common. Ditto for AKs. High quality weapons would be less common, but highly distributed, via organized crime.

Tyndmyr wrote:Most people, criminal or not, are not assassins. Firearm use patterns just don't reflect that. They're not buying guns specifically to kill a specific people, they're buying a gun to have a gun around. Most firearms used in crime are not acquired legally, so there would be fairly little change. If a dude bought a gun from a black market dealer, he'd do the exact same even if legal gun purchasing were different in some way. The fellow making the guns would not likely be the sort of person breaking into 7-11s. He'd be someone who was tempted by easy money.


Making guns is a fair few hours work, and metal and machine tools are fairly expensive. How much is having an M16 over a zipgun worth to a criminal, and what sort of profit does the gunmaker have to make to justify his risk from police and his investment in time and materials?

It doesn't sound like easy money.


Making drugs is rather more work. Guns tend not to explode while being made, gunsmithing doesn't have much in the way of telltale smells or massive power consumption the way drugs often do. Today, ARs start at somewhere north of about a grand. I'm sure that if supply were greatly restricted, prices would rise.

Tyndmyr wrote:These objections also apply to meth dealers, yet people still cook meth. Making meth is probably harder than making a functional gun, too.


I would imagine that the value of meth is huge enough to make up for the risk. A quick search suggests we're talking $800-1,000 an ounce.


The same will be true for guns at some degree of increased price/limited supply. Realistically, the higher the price, the more people will say "that's worth it", and give it a shot.

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Re: Gun Control

Postby Nem » Thu Nov 07, 2013 1:54 pm UTC

Tyndmyr wrote:We would likely see a similar distribution of manufacturers with firearms. Simple zip guns could be made by anyone(some kids got busted making and selling zip guns recently, was a minor news article). Lowers and other fairly easy to make pieces for more professional firearms would be somewhat less common, but still really common. Ditto for AKs. High quality weapons would be less common, but highly distributed, via organized crime.


You don't need an AK to hold up grandma, or rob the 7/11. The distribution pattern at any given quality of firearm would be determined by supply and demand, profit and risk. If guns are weapons of opportunity, something for having, not so much for using, - which is not improbable - then where's the demand for guns that are better than zip guns going to come from?

Tyndmyr wrote:Making drugs is rather more work. Guns tend not to explode while being made, gunsmithing doesn't have much in the way of telltale smells or massive power consumption the way drugs often do. Today, ARs start at somewhere north of about a grand. I'm sure that if supply were greatly restricted, prices would rise.


Making drugs isn't hard, at least not on a per unit basis. You can make meth in a jug in the back of your car (granted it has a non-negligible chance of blowing up in your face if you're not careful about bleeding it off, but that apparently doesn't stop drug addicts) and the more industrialised methods turn out massive quantities for the amount of effort put in. MJ? It's actively hard to screw that one up - the reason most MJ users don't grow their own has more to do with really bad planning abilities than anything else. Opiates? Hard to get the poppies but it's easy enough to separate out over the counter medicine.

None of those things is hard. Most of it you don't even have to watch that closely.

Tyndmyr wrote:The same will be true for guns at some degree of increased price/limited supply. Realistically, the higher the price, the more people will say "that's worth it", and give it a shot.
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Sure, but who's going to say "Sell me a gun for a million dollars"? If the intersection is wrong then it just won't be worthwhile.


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