Helena Ripoll Hazell

This conversation is closed.

NO MORE GUNS, LET THE CHILDREN GROW UP.

Following the last abominal massacre in the US, one fails to understand why the II Amendment is still in force. It was adopted in 1791 stating:
"A well regulated militia being necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed."
What kind of freedom is that, when people feel the need to bear an arm just in case? How many more lives to be jeopardised before we all realise bearing arms is not the way to go? Not only in the USA but across the world!

The history of school shootings, only in the US dates back to 1764. Here's a list of some of the school shootings across the world:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Orangeburg_massacre
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jackson_State_killings
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bath_School_disaster
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cologne_school_massacre
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ma%27alot_massacre
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Beslan_school_hostage_crisis
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Columbine_High_School_massacre
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Eric_Harris_and_Dylan_Klebold
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mercaz_HaRav_massacre

The National Rifle Association says "Guns don't kill people, people do". In Eddie Izzard's words: Well I think the gun helps, one would have to be very dodgy on the heart to die from someone standing in front of them and going 'Bang! Pum-ratatata-pum!'

Arms should be replaced by education and humanity.

And last but not least, I can't help but cite the one and only Mr Chaplin:
"...We want to live by each others happiness, not by each others misery...In this world there is room for everyone....Greed has poisoned men's soul, has barricaded the world with hate...our knowledge has left us cynical, our cleverness hard and unkind. We think too much and feel too little. More than machinery we need humanity. More than cleverness we need kindness and gentleness...."

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    Jul 25 2012: I've had to to step back from this conversation out of sheer and utter frustration reading some of the responses. Not only I'm being criticised for making a relation between the Colorado shooting and the numerous school shootings across the world through out the history that I'm also being accused of cutting and pasting the news articles, remark that not only is irrelevant to the topic but also not true, the only cutting and pasting I've done is from wikipedia sharing the links, and last but not least, I'm being told to wake up, wake up? Really? Just because I don't condone the use of arms?
    I was brought up in a culture that has a long history in violence, starting with the Inquisition that was active until early 19th century, going through to a civil war, a dictatorship that started in 1939 and lasted until 1975, and the numerous terrorist attacks from ETA, so all in all, I think my eyes are wide open when I talk about banning all guns. Will it stop the crime and violence in the world? No but at least the angry 12 year old won't be able to help himself from his grandfather's arsenal and shoot down his whole school class, nor will the unstable mind be able to buy it from the counter and shoot whoever is not of his liking. But it seems the general attitude is to condone the use of arms and let's just see who the last man standing is. It's not about wishful thinking, I don't aim for a dream world, I'm calling people for action, because this can be changed. We can focus on educating children and giving them the support they need to grow up in a sane environment that will not propel them to go after us in rage when things don't go their way. But then again, that's just my opinion and I really do hope more people than what it seems share it, otherwise I feel we're doomed.
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      Jul 26 2012: You're talking to a predominantly American audience with growing libertarian tendencies. We have the advantage of being able to look at the whole problem from the outside.
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        Jul 28 2012: Hi Sibin Simha,
        Unfortunately, there would still be violence and crime in the world even without weapons but at least the death rates would diminish. I don't believe in magic and don't aim for an ideal world just strongly believe that we need to start treating the real world better through education and humanity. Psychopaths like Hitler are still around and worst of all, some of them in power of their countries and even under the label of democracy, in some cases.
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      Jul 26 2012: Hi Helena
      It's loud and clear, I meant your point.
      Don't know how can we ensure peace but I am in favour of your view.
      Everyone has her/his own lense to see thru.....so the opinion is but the issue is intolerance to others view (agreeing to disagree must be there but that doesn't mean to attack / accuse) which is at times epidemic here......and we claim we are democratic , we are civilized !!!
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        Jul 28 2012: Hi Salim!

        It's clear that everyone has their own opinion and, quite frankly, I couldn't care less if I appear to be an immature sleep-walking plagiarist in other people's eyes. I'd sooner appear to be that than change my stance to theirs on this topic. :-)
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      Jul 30 2012: Why do we still have a tendancy to push good people like Helena to defend their stance with such passion? Well, in the end, I thank you for your perhaps unintentional rudeness because it is by pushing good women like Helena to such a point that you see exactly the force and the power of intellect that will save humanity itself, I think. When the women are pushed to the limit by the mindless pretzel logic of those who have accepted and become the mouth pieces for perspective that kill the people and support profits for cruel entities like the NRA we hear the truth and the heart of female goodness. It is not only female but it often starts there with a clarity that is exceptional and a love for humanity that separates the wheat from the chaff! In every corner of our world, they are thinking and watching and waiting for their turn at bat. Meekness has never equalled weakness. Politieness often masks amazing strength!
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    Jul 24 2012: Let us be clear about one thing, it's not down to good or bad people. We call people who go around shooting other people bad once the deed is done, but some of these people would have never fallen under the bad banner before. So let's not try and prevent bad people from getting guns or try to engineer society to be full of good people. Human beings have complex psychological profiles that go beyond good or bad and they do the most senseless things if easy opportunities are presented to them. Some have mental breakdowns, some are blinded by rage, some people get a messed up mind from a traumatic event, some people have a terrible life and feel the need to go out with a bang. We're making it easy for all sorts of people who don't fall into the very simplistic two-dimensional good vs. evil line. It reminds me of the lifeline in Donnie Darko where Swayze's character tries to sell the idea that everything in life can be summed up to one spectrum with love on one end and fear on the other.

    Let's ban guns altogether because that is the sensible thing to do. The power to protect should remain in the hands of those trained to do so, not your average Joe that can get a little trigger friendly if he doesn't like your kind. We haven't come so far in organised society to descend back into individualism and anarchy. I feel like for most Europeans, this is preaching to the choir. Too bad America often can't look past its borders.
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      Jul 25 2012: At last some common sense. Thank you.
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      Jul 29 2012: Ok let's pretend we have a ban on guns. What is next? After the next violent act, what's the next ban going to be. Let's ban all places where people congregate. Let impose a curfew where everyone has to be in the house by 7pm. Let's ban movie theatres, resturants, airports, bus stations, subways, Let's police force the nation. There should be two officers for every one person. The gun ban will be the first to go, the next will be our freedom of speech. When you start taking freedoms away from people you become just like the middle east. My argument isn't about guns at all...its about freedom. Our founding fathers broke away from tyranny to create a world where people could live free from overreaching government control. We the people are responsible for our own actions and there are consequences to the good and consequences to the bad. One can not pass their burden of personal responsibility to the government. Let's hold on to our freedoms and use our energies to attack the core of our societal problems. Let's look deeper into the chain of events that lead a person to attack helpless masses. Could it be this person lost hope, was he taking medicines that altered the balance of his brain chemistry? Did he never know love? We need to attack issues like this and move our effort upstream. Let's return hope and love to our young people. Let's be their for our youth when they need guidance. Let's teach them to think and make choices based on compared outcomes. Let's listen to them and found out what's bothering them or what they are interested in. Let's nurture their creative spirit and allow them to excel in it. Let's get uncomfortable and overcome our ever increasing moments of societal inertia. Let's become socially wealthy as opposed to material wealthy. Let us spend more time on the most important things in life: Family, community, humanity. Let's find a cure, not a bandaid. Peace be with you all and God bless!
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        Jul 29 2012: The slippery slope argument is one of the weakest arguments ever conceived and history shows that those who have used it are almost never vindicated.

        Social cohesion increases the potential for freedom. It is too easy to argue that every ban goes against freedom, but it is undeniable that what you can do with yourself in an organised society vastly surpasses what you could do in a society with so-called total freedom: an anarchist society. True if society was to turn to anarchy right now, on the short term you would have more liberties. But on the long-term, the enabling force of government would not be there to push the kind of growth that has made us more educated, healthier and less occupied with tasks such as washing clothes by hand. In short, all that makes up true freedom gets lost without a cohesive society. One must strike a balance between present freedom and security, even you yourself know this, as you would not enable every man to have access to bombs (why not, that would be freedom!).

        To jump to the Middle-East and completely ignore Europe is to miss on a group of countries where the ban on guns has shown its success. Shoot outs still happen, but on such a ridiculously smaller scales. They are not the doings of some unbalanced teenager one day, but the acts of organised psycopaths which will happen, ban or no ban.

        Your propositions to fix the problems with the youth (the problem is only with young people? What?) is flowery language. You're not proposing concrete solutions because you've already achieved your goal of defending the right to your gun. You're talking about listening and nurturing, but that's just not an answer. As I see it, the other solution would be to carry a psychological profile of all people to pre-emptively predict these events and THAT would be a real infringement of freedom. Why not tackle the problem at the level where it isn't about individual freedom but really about prevention?
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          Jul 29 2012: You are truly awesome, thank you for your lucidity and coherence.
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          Jul 29 2012: My argument is about prevention, your target is downstream and only targets one thing guns. My target is upstream and targets people. Spin it how you want to, technology and human ingenuity will forever be one step ahead of you. The problem is the criminal, not the method of the crime.
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        Jul 29 2012: The method of the crime can also be a motivation for the crime, let's not fool ourselves in thinking that the guns are here just a tool to carry out violence. Guns may be a mere enabler for organised crime, not so for the suddenly unbalanced guy who considers only the idea because the opportunity is there. Once again your solution remains completely unclear.

        Once again I urge you to consider Europe and not to descend into your Middle-Eastern obsessions. A Middle-East by the way, which doesn't practice stringent gun control across the board, no matter what you think of it (I guess your analogy wasn't evidence-based anyway, but merely a way to couch more keywords like freedom and founding fathers).
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          Jul 29 2012: I now understand your theory. It's based on your complete lack of confidence in humanity. Put your trust in the government witch is comprised of these very humans which you distrust to be able to act and think on their own accord. You are a product of educational bias. Try not to accept every statistic you encounter as truth or accurate.
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        Jul 29 2012: Everything is black or white with you isn't it? If I don't think the average Joe can be trusted with a gun, all of the sudden this means I have no trust in humanity. It's cool if you think that humans are blank slates that can be moulded into non-violent citizens just by changing their environment, but it blatantly denies human nature and the unpredictabilty of complex systems.

        Again, if you have a non-invasive solution, I'm all ears. I think I'll give statistics a bit more of credibility than the gut feeling of a biased sample of 1.
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          Jul 29 2012: Allow me to apologize. I know nothing about your education and your country's criminal statistics. Best wishes in your endeavors. I hope we can continue respect each other's opinions Au revoir.
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        Jul 31 2012: I don't understand why Americans (generally speaking) are so concerned about the rights as written on a piece of paper a couple of hundred years ago. If freedon is the most important right why aren't you arguing for the right to multiple wives or the right to marry your horse or the right to same sex marriage or the right to take drugs if I want to. These would all be freedoms that one may want to experience?
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    Jul 31 2012: I have one final question for the pro-rights pro-gun lobby. If you live in a country where a referendum is held and the majority vote for banning guns, if you argue against this majority isn't that arguing against democracy? Aren't you then arguing against that communities right to set their own societal standards?
    Here's an idea I had earlier http://www.ted.com/conversations/12846/an_alternative_form_of_gun_con.html
    Just a thought.
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      Jul 31 2012: Hurrah for Peter Lindsay!
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        Jul 31 2012: Hello Debra how are you?
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          Jul 31 2012: Jaime, now it is a good day and now I am wonderful! I have missed YOU!
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    Jul 29 2012: Hit the world manufacturers of semi automatic weapons and specialised bullets,make it a crime to sell to any civilian agency other than a countries police and military forces.

    No one has ever told me that a semi automatic is useful in everyday activity,i know alot of hunters that go out get what they need without a semi automatic.
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    Jul 28 2012: I'm completely for this and I'm no hippie. The military can have their weapons and what but joe bloggs on the street does not need a fully automatic rifle.
    If there's no guns yes people will find other ways of killing each other. But it removes one method out of the equation. guns can be used for a random and unexpected attack i.e you could have a gun for years then one day decide to take pot shots out your window at people. Whereas with a bomb (a favourite of the IRA) it requires constructing, planning, delivering and a successful detonation. This behavior is similar to the idea that having a gun, could potentially, allow someone to act in a moment of hardship or stress etc and just shoot someone. I could provide examples but they'd be on the extreme end of the example.
    Now as I live in Northern Ireland I've seen the effects of people having guns with an intention to use them. Imagine the chaos that would have ensued if the IRA and UDA had free roam to weapons, or if every potential recruit was already armed or if everyone on a street could take pot shots at the police.
    And to respond to the idea of "we need guns for when the government tries to kill us" idea, there's no reason at all to think that the government or your own army ESPECIALLY in the western world is going to wage war on their own people. If any law enforcement come after you 99% of the time it's your own fault they're going after you and you probably deserve it.
    We just don't need guns as people.
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    Jul 26 2012: Can there be a good reason for shooting someone? And can a gun be in the right hands? Guns are cowardly weapons of destruction at a distance. We should be teaching the children to solve their problems through words not weapons. If you had a tongue-lashing from my daughter you'd know what I mean!
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        Jul 28 2012: I would agree Sibin Simha except that it's hard to tell your child to give in, feel love and allow the rest of the world to beat her up. Armed with a few choice phrases, at least she can defend herself. And the wounds from words can be healed more easily than those from a gun shot.
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        Jul 28 2012: Sibin Simha,
        It is possible to communicate one's point of view and defend it, through spoken words, eloquently and assertively without being insulting or harmful. I'm in favour of teaching children to communicate in such manner. It's not always the strongest who wins the "battle", irony and humour can be very powerful tools. :-)
  • Aug 1 2012: Historically, guns were owned and justified because of slow, poor or no police service, but as long as police can deliver standard service, there is no need to own them. This law appears to be obsolete and needs to be changed.
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    Jul 24 2012: First off nice cutting and pasting from this weeks news articles.

    Now the fun stuff. Looking at the statistics we have 300 million people in the US and over 300 million guns. The majority of gun violence happens in poor neighborhoods, with poor education, where the people have limited abilities to better themselves and no chance to escape their surroundings. The violence is driven by desperation and anger. This issue is not a gun issue, it is a societal one.

    About the most recent tragedy in Colorado. You can not compare it to the previous ones. In the previous cases, the person had a connection and rage towards the people they were inflicting harm against. In this case you had a person with no connection to the victims, dressed in purple, with orange hair, saying he was the Joker from Batman fame. Personally I will chalk this one up to the crazy as a crap house rat column.
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    Jul 24 2012: Helena, this is often my stance but in the whole scope of my life a very different memory floats up to challenge it a bit. All little boys appear to me to be fascinated with weapons. When my eldest was tiny I was utterly opposed to any weapons in his life. His Dad, a cop, never ever brought his gun into the house. Before the birth of my second child, I was seeking a way to bond the two and side step sibling rivalry. It had to be sincere because that first kid was very perceptive. The one thing in the world he longed for (he is 31 now) was a HEman sword. So, I reluctantly bought, wrapped and hid one. The baby gave him the sword as soon as he arrived home. OMG
    That bonding has never been undone. When my second son was hosptialized for a couple months recently, my eldest took every afternoon off to be in the hospital room with him. He took over as power of attourney when I had to enter another hospital, never left him until he came out of the coma, and took him home for rehab. The wife of my eldest son was better than a mother to him and loves him as her husband does. (all of my kids adore their noble first sister in law so I count myself very fortunate) So did I do the right thing in bending my own rules - being a bit flexible? I think I did but i stil hate weapons and guess what - My eldest son was actively involved in raising funds and fascilitating the removal of landmines in Cambodia. In fact, the only wedding presents they would accept were gifts toward that project.
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      Jul 24 2012: Toy weapons are fine. I had a lightsaber as a kid. War video games are fine too. These are not the things that will push people to shoot other people for real. People don't shoot people because they're fascinated by weapons (or at least it's nowhere near the main motivation). It's never that simple even though some people suggest it is. It's always easier to go after toys and games manufacturers than it is against the gun lobbies.
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        Jul 24 2012: Matthieu, your retort seems to suggest that i disagree with you - I do not. I was working hard internally to consider all sides. i am a parent. are you speaking from this perspective?
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        Jul 25 2012: Thank you! Sounds wonderful!
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      Jul 25 2012: Hi Debra,
      I hear what you're saying and I myself have played with a toy sword as a child, in fact, my father made it for me and he is one of the kindest and most benevolent people I've ever met. I understand your predicament at the time and totally share it , but one thing is toy weapons and another real weapons.
      It sounds like you have exceptional children who do remarkable work. You must be ever so proud.
      If I don't remember wrong, you like Tracy Chapman so here I post you one of her songs that is truly spot on this topic. http://youtu.be/TqU3nQkkpxM
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        Jul 25 2012: What a memory and a kindness! Thank you, Helena!
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    Jul 24 2012: May this wish come true one day
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    Aug 2 2012: One argument for the second amendment that I don't understand is that the people have to be able to overthrow the government if it stops following the constitution. What I don't understand about this is that this line of thought leads to the citizen's need to own surface to air missiles, jets, submarines, tanks, flamethrowers, bazookas and countless other devices that are only good for killing people. I don't see the NRA arming all its members with these weapons, and if they did, I fear that the country would be so unstable that political tension could rise enough for a second civil war. People over here are already too polarized.

    My other issue is the number of children killed each year by fire arm discharges. Between 1979 and 2006, the number of children killed by fired arms was107,603. This information was publicized by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. (I realize that this statistic is evidence only of the death of children by gunfire, and it does not prove that tougher gun laws would reduce this, but it is undeniable that the kids were killed by guns. Is it really plausible that those deaths would have occurred by knife wounds?)
  • Aug 1 2012: Never been there. Never done that. Can you site sources that crime overall has decreased? Violent crime? Usually, when guns are prohibited, violent crimes increase. One would hope Australia is the exception to the rule, but...?
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    Jul 31 2012: Helenas , estoy de acuerdo en el CONTROL de las armas, pero sin ellas como nos defendemos de los maniaticos asesinos seriales como los que puntualmente citas en tu elenco de masacres?. ¿Que no sera mejor quitar o eliminar al que usa las armas...tratarlo, identificarlo, reducirlo a la idiotez quimica en una prision de por vida, antes de que asesine a uno o a miles?....¿Por donde podriamos comenzar?...¿Que no seria mejor redefinir el problema y hacer las preguntas pertinentes?...Como por ejemplo: Que es mas peligroso: Un arma sin asesino o un asesino sin arma?
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      Aug 2 2012: Hola Jaime,
      Está claro que una persona va a ser siempre más peligrosa con que sin arma, aunque también pueda haber alguna excepción. El problema es, como muy bien ha dicho ya Matthieu, que el perfil psicológico de una persona es mucho más complejo de lo que mucha gente parece querer entender aquí, y va más allá de lo bueno y lo malo. No son sólo los criminales y los de mentes inestables que cometen atrocidades. Es de naturaleza humana el verse retado por las circunstancias que la vida nos va ofreciendo y dada la oportunidad, todos, absolutamente todos, somos capaces de cometer la peor de las insensateces, ya sea por la ira ciega, el trauma que haya podido suponer un evento, etc. Se lo estamos poniendo muy pero que muy fácil a todo tipo de gente que no entra en el canon simplista de bueno o malo.
      Soy perfectamente consciente de que la violencia y el crimen no ceserían con la retirada absoluta de armas pero, por lo menos, las cifras de muertes disminuirían. Y si, hay que enfocarse en promulgar educación y sobre todo humanidad, pero eso hay que hacerlo siempre, con o sin armas de por medio. ¿Cómo nos defenderíamos de los criminales? Pues más razón me das aún con esa pregunta, no quiero ni imaginar lo que podría haber hecho ETA y podría seguir haciendo hoy día, si hubieran tenido acceso a sus armas con la facilidad con la que se puede disponer de ellas en otros países del mundo cómo EU. Para mí no hay ninguna justificación válida para la posesión de un arma ni su uso, esté en las manos de quién esté.
  • Jul 31 2012: This is extremely, extremely simple. Research all of history where 'arms' have been banned. Then track crime rates, before, during, and after the ban of said arms.

    That's it. Report back the results and you have your answer.

    I fully support everyone's right to own, and arm, bears.
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      Jul 31 2012: In Australia gun related crime has consistantly decreased since gun control laws were introduce after the Port Arthur Massacre.
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    Jul 31 2012: In last year’s shooting near Oslo, 69 people were killed and an additional 110 injured. Germany, a country with some of the strictest gun control in the world — it requires not only extensive psychological screening but also a year’s wait to get a gun — has been the site of three of the worst five multiple-victim K-12 public school shootings in the world, all in the past decade. There are more examples of attacks in countries with strict gun control, like in Austria, Britain, France, Finland and Italy.

    The guns used for the attacks in Germany and Norway were obtained illegally. When individuals plan these attacks months or even years in advance, it is virtually impossible to stop them from getting whatever weapons they want.


    Read more: http://www.foxnews.com/opinion/2012/07/30/new-gun-laws-will-do-nothing-to-stop-mass-shooting-attacks/#ixzz229jJDwZi
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      Jul 31 2012: I invite you to come to Australia Wade and try to buy a handgun. The problem with strict gun control is that your laws are only as good as your border security. The open borders of the Eurozone mean no one country is in control of its gun laws.
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        Jul 31 2012: I would love to come to Australia, However I have no desire to buy a handgun or any weapon. I will buy you a beer or two and enjoy your beautiful culture as much as is legally possible. You are spot on with the border security. Let me see if I can find quote from Ellis Island.
        Ellis Island opened in 1892 as a federal immigration station, a purpose it served for more than 60 years (it closed in 1954). Millions of newly arrived immigrants passed through the station during that time--in fact, it has been estimated that close to 40 percent of all current U.S. citizens can trace at least one of their ancestors to Ellis Island.

        In my opinion, This is why we don't build walls.
        Let Freedom Ring!
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          Jul 31 2012: In AUS we do have very strict gun laws that going by the statistics seem to work, but we do have the advantage that, for me to go to another jurisdiction to buy a gun and then bring it back would require about a week and several thousand dollars just in travel costs. And then you've got to get it through customs. Geographic isolation does have some benefits. It also makes for a very relaxed atmosphere. As a people(Australians) we do tend to take for granted our ability to set our own agenda without interference. There is always plenty of beer though.
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      Jul 31 2012: Hello Wade,
      First of all, thank you for your active participation in this conversation. Although we don't fully share the same views around this topic, I appreciate your civility in expressing yours; it makes me more interested in trying to understand them.

      I have no doubt you are in favour of promoting education and humanity however I assert you are missing the point about the gun banning proposition.

      If you read through the links I posted, you will find that the fourth one is about a school shooting in Cologne, Germany. At no time I have omitted the fact that violence and crime happens too in countries where the use of guns is banned, however you will find the death rates by gunshots is much lower than in countries where the use of guns is legal.
      Matthieu has already very clearly stated that human minds a very complex, it's not only the criminals or the psychopaths that can make "inappropriate" use of guns( for me there is no appropriate use of any weapon). I would really dread to think what some people in my country, with no record of psychosis or crime, would do, at these times of strong recession, if they had easy access to weapons. Yes, there is a societal issue behind this, there always is, in one way or another, it's human nature. Yes we need to focus more on education and humanity but just that, isn't enough.

      I haven't had the time to read through the link you posted however I have extended the conversation for a few more days so I have the opportunity to do so.
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        Jul 31 2012: Helena, did you say 'civil"? if so, what should I do with this remark?
        "Just because I have a slightly different view than yours this doesn't warrent your crafty slanderous remarks. " from that same individual?
        Things like this make me suspect that his opinions may not be his own in isolation (rther NRA) but I do not wish to jump to conclusions..

        PS did you also notice how he ammended his previous entryithout admiting it?
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          Jul 31 2012: I'm sorry Debra, I hadn't noticed that remark. I must admit I'm extremely busy at the moment and haven't read all posts thoroughly. And no, I didn't notice the editing. Thank you for making me aware and thank you for your contribution so far, as always you are full of wisdom and kindness.
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    Jul 30 2012: Maybe guns are the bully's favourite toys and those of us who dare to stand against them are risking the wrath of the bullies' temper tantrums.
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    Jul 29 2012: The problem with guns is not the guns themselves. Millions of people have proven that guns can be used in a safe contructive way. Completly banning arms would be a ludicrious way of trying to solve the problem.

    I think if we really wanted to make a change we would look at how people get the guns. Make the people acquiring guns do a series of tests. Have better education in place to teach people how to operate their gun in a safer way. There are several solutions that can be found without immediately jumping to te conclusion that we should ban all arms.
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      Jul 30 2012: Maximilian, It would be more conducive to dialgue if you refrained from using catch phrases like "the problem with guns is not with the guns themselves". These are intelligent and well read people who recognize such propaganda from hearing a billion times. It turns the listener off from other more cognent points.
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    Jul 26 2012: Rules are offensive in nature, once you lay down one restriction, you must forever create new restrictions. Restrictions only take us back to the dark ages. If we are ever to advance to a new level of moral conscienceness we must cease trying to solve our issues through restriictive law. If everyone behaved in the same predictible patterns, life would be too boring to tolerate. I beleive that it is the rules and regulations that are the very source of violence. If we all have to walk this pre defined line, what's the point of living...we become less dynamic, less human. To what end? We would become nothing more than animals to be herded by those who make the restrictions.
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      Jul 30 2012: I think I would rather live with restrictions and living people who might make a contribibution than with dead people who can no longer make any contribution. I like Helena's idea of letting everyone grow up even if it means restrictions. I do not find it a valid premise that people should claim a right to have guns to make life less boring. YIKES! I think people are entitled to live their 'boring" little lives without deferring to someone else version of excitement!

      Addition; i submit, once again, that I consider it unfair and injust to alter one's writing after a response has been made to it unless one makes it clear that whatever is being added happened AFTER the person responded. To alter ones response as has been done above only makes it appear that the responder missed the original point. That is not kosher, in my view.
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        Jul 30 2012: I am in full agreement with you. Children should grow up without fear of being shot. Gun control fails to address the problem which is a social problem. People raised without any moral foundation are capable of acting without conscience. Criminals and psycopaths don't live by our rules. if they can't aquire a gun legally they will aquire illegally.

        For the record guns have never provided excitement for me so I don't appriecate you spinning my post to strengthen your position. and I don't understand why you would assume I don't care about the children or all the victims who died by guns. Just because I have a slightly different view than yours this doesn't warrent your crafty slanderous remarks.
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          Jul 30 2012: Wade, education taints us in a way that we always expect people to back up their assertions with facts. I have studied psychopaths quite extensively. Are you aware that one of the most huge issues in social science in the last decade is the attempt to explain the DRASTIC DECLINE in violent crime?

          That final line was just crummy.
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          Jul 31 2012: PTHTHTHPRTHTH!

          I find it hard to take a Randian any more seriously than when you left in a pout last time.
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          Aug 1 2012: Wade, perhaps i should thank you and your bogus rhetoric for I have never receieved so much kind support. Who is assaulting whom?
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      Aug 2 2012: Wade,

      Laws are not the cause criminal activity. In society, we create laws in reaction to crimes we see being committed in order to help discourage future crimes of a similar nature.

      In regard to your reticence to "walking a defined line," you had already implied your support for a "new level of moral conscience." If we are willing to walk a limited line of moral conscience, we should be willing to walk the same line as determined by a law created to encode that moral conscience. They are the same thing: being willing to limit our liberty for the rights of others within our society. "Rightful liberty is unobstructed action according to our will within limits drawn around us by the equal rights of others." - Thomas Jefferson
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        Aug 2 2012: "Rightful liberty is unobstructed action according to our will within limits drawn around us by the equal rights of others." - Thomas Jefferson

        Wow! and thank you.
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    Jul 26 2012: Ok let's pretend their are no guns. Now the criminal will have to find another way to overcome his or her victim. So let's get rid of lead pipes, chloroform, tear gas, molatove cocktails, motor vehicles, candle holders, baseball bats, the list is endless. I think we should put a ban on victims or teach people how to protect themselves. You can ban all the stuff you want, it will only help the criminal gain an advantage over their undefended victims.
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      Jul 27 2012: You realise there is no defense against a gun right? Unless you're covered head to toe in kevlar a bullet will really mess your day up.
      Now you also exaggerate your idea of restrictions. How many mass murder sprees have you heard of which used a baseball bat or a lead pipe. None, why? Because of some huge differences. With a gun you could be a mile away and still kill someone, you could shoot someone once and that could be them dead. Baseball bats require a very close range, one hit would rarely kill anyone and you can dodge a swing or grab the bat or attack your assailant. With a gun, you can't dodge a bullet, if you don't get hit the shooter missed.
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        Jul 28 2012: To the best of my knowledge, a gun can't fire one round by it's self. This being said, the real problem is the person behind the gun. We should focus our efforts on the real problem "what makes a person become so void of morality that they can carry out such atrocities. I realize gun control may make us "feel more safe" but it actually scares me.
        When someone snaps and wishes to do harm, that person will not consider if aquiring a weapon is legal or illegal, he or she could care less about law and order.
        A false sense of security is all you will get with gun control.
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          Jul 29 2012: Or no body has guns and the onl way to get a firearm is to make your own makeshift gun. And even if they still find a way to get guns illegally it still prevents erratic killing sprees as they no longer have easy access to weapons and so must plan it which although it doesn't make the situation any less severe it at least removes one element of killing spree that can be committed
  • Jul 25 2012: What would you tell people who use guns for purposes such as hunting? My family hunts and we each have a couple guns, and what we shoot ends up feeding us for a good portion of the year. I know several families who don't have a lot of money who rely on hunting as a major source of food for themselves. Without guns, this wouldn't be possible.
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      Jul 26 2012: Do you have jobs, just curious. If other families don't have lots of money is it due to a lack of jobs available or is it that hunting is preferred by them?
      And I'd tell hunters to start a farm.
      • Jul 26 2012: We do have jobs, but hunting is a very practical way to get food without spending a lot of money. Not to mention it's good for the animal popoulations.

        Also, I don't know how much you know about farming, but starting a farm is almost impossible. Most small farmers are getting bought out by bigger ones as it is.
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          Jul 30 2012: Ross, I assume that you are not the gun owners who frighten us to death. If you are a person who is feeding the children so they can grow up. We are worried about gun use (normally hand guns) which kills the children and sometimes their parents. Often a child who learns to hunt, also learns that sort of aboriginal reverence for the life which was given to promote life itself. What we object to, and I assume you do too, is the useless and malicious and callous draining of life that limits everyone's future.
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    Jul 25 2012: I really hate to say this... but, you need to grow up. No more guns... Is like "Just say no". Even in the magical world where everyone gave up their guns, they would still understand force, combustion, and projectiles. It's just a matter of time before someone gets in a fight with someone else, and they build a makeshift gun.

    Now, the angry person, with the makeshift gun and rage in his heart... Is the most powerful person in his vicinity.
    There will always be psychopaths, and they don't care about the law. Sane people care about laws. You are encouraging sane people to disarm themselves so that psychopaths can kill them...

    It's the same problem with drug laws. Drug addicts don't care about laws, they care about drugs, but they also don't care about business... psychopaths do. If you make drugs illegal, you force drug addicts to deal with psychopaths. The violence, and gateway phenomena exist because the more illegal the drug is, the higher the profit margin. If 7-11 sold drugs, they'd want you hooked on weed... because potheads can hold jobs, and pay for their drugs. A psychopath, wants you hooked on meth, because it's the highest short term profit margin, and he doesn't care about you.

    It's a nice impossible idea. No more guns. Just say no. Love is all you need. It doesn't work in the real world, where most people are miserable, and angry.
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    Jul 24 2012: Firearms revolutionize military. I don't like war, but if the peaceful world didn't have firearms, the extremists would. I am of coarse refering to the Taliban and homegrown terrorist groups.
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      Jul 24 2012: Though Kevin there's a big leap from the military having guns and then your average person.
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        Jul 25 2012: Yeah, I'm just saying that without firearms, developing or developed countries have no significant defense against terrorists groups which probably would ghetto-rig together their own projectile weapons.
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          Jul 25 2012: But the big flipside to that is that any potential recruits for said terrorist groups will already be armed. I'd hate to think what would've happened if the IRA and UDA were able to legally own weapons.
  • Jul 24 2012: Hi Helena,

    A few years ago I would have been agreeing with you. Then came the Patriot Act.

    Now, 300,000,000 guns in civilian hands sounds about right.
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    Jul 24 2012: The NRA is right in that people kill each other not guns. The gun does nothing by itself.

    So I think a lot of people are forgetting that a lot of people who own guns are good people. They would never shoot someone without a good reason. The problem is I think we focus too much on the bad, like we think what would happen if the gun was in wrong hands.

    So the problem is then, how do we get bad people away from the gun? Well, if we had a society where everyone is good, caring, and understanding, and loving of humanity, then no one would want to destroy the world and kill people. And this is not as crazy to accomplish as it seems. I've been going around the threads on Ted, and have basically said the same thing. It all starts with how the kid is raised. They need to be shown compassion and caring so that they will be compassionate and caring, and they need to be curious so they can understand how things work the way they do. If every kid in the world were raised in this fashion, then I can almost guarantee that there would be no hate anymore.
  • Jul 24 2012: You stepped in it but I don't know if you smelled it.

    You asked, "What kind of freedom is that, when people feel the need to bear an arm just in case?"

    As long as criminals (the police, SWAT, military, government, IRS Agents, FBI, CIA and other gangs) of the government affiliated with them have guns, your freedom will only and always be freedom you have to be willing to fight and die for.

    Those gangs I listed, are working overtime to remove all your freedoms and liberties, those of safety, security, privacy and your personal being and mind, and you need to wake up and smell what you stepped in.

    Get the weapons and power out of the hands of the psychopaths in power, and then I might agree with you and most of the world would be capable of achieving your dream world.

    When Marshall Law is enacted in September, don't go looking for a cop,. They will be looking for you.