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Rob Freda

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Solving gun violence in the US in today's insane political climate requires a solution that makes it painless for everyone.

First that this idea even needs to be broached in the first place is ridiculous especially given the lack of clarity in the second amendment (eg it does not specify types of arms so that should be handled by laws not as a "do what you will free for all").

That said it seems there are some major elements that would be necessary to reduce gun deaths in the US and there are some obfuscating interests embodied in the NRA that must be sidestepped or accommodated in the solution.

Four main areas of focus jump out to reduce gun deaths:

1) "mass killings" (included in this would be the 2 or 3 person shootings as well as as Newtown or Aurora types)
2) Accidental shootings
3) Non-owner shootings (eg the shooter is not the owner of the gun)
4) "black market" trading

Added to these I would say the parameter that makes gun control legislation difficult is gun manufacturer revenue stream protection using the second amendment as a shill.

So what are the necessary parameters to make something happen vs. the absurdity of what is going to happen over the next few months in Washington:

1) Figure out a way that shifting policy creates more revenue for gun manufacturers so they get the NRA on board
2) Make sure that guns cannot be used in public places or by someone other than their owner

The Idea - Mandatory gun locks and universal kill switches.

On locks, all responsible gun owners have gun safes. Why not move the lock to the gun's trigger mechanism either with a combination code or biometric locks. That would prevent unauthorized use of the gun by anyone but the owner.

On kill switches, in the same locking mechanism put a chip and actuator that freezes the locking mechanism mentioned above when it receives a certain modulated radio signal.

If mandatory then all existing guns will have to be refitted with the new bolt mechanism creating revenue streams for the gun manufacturers and on all new guns they can charge more creating more revenue.

Thoughts?

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  • Jan 20 2013: Guns are horrible, violent creations of the devil; but, personal emotions aside, lets look at some facts.

    *Throughout the world, it is clearly seen that the more guns that the common people have in possession, the lower the rate of violent crime becomes.*

    But we will focus on America, and fire arm contributions to human mortality.

    To assume that violent gun crimes are America's highest death cause, and worst problem, one must actively decline to acknowledge other factors of death in America.

    Center for disease control reports - Firearm homicides 2011
    Number of deaths: 11,078
    Deaths per 100,000 population: 3.6

    National Highway Traffic Safety Administration reports - Motor vehicle death 2011
    Number of deaths: 32,310
    Deaths per 100,000 population : 10.4

    Center for disease control reports - Leading causes of death 2010
    Heart disease: 597,689 (192.4 / 100,000)
    Cancer: 574,743 (185.1 / 100,000)
    Chronic lower respiratory diseases: 138,080 (44.4 / 100,000)
    Stroke (cerebrovascular diseases): 129,476 (41.6 / 100,000)
    Accidents (unintentional injuries): 120,859 (38.9 / 100,000)
    Alzheimer's disease: 83,494 (26.8 / 100,000)
    Diabetes: 69,071 (22.2 / 100,000)
    Nephritis, nephrotic syndrome, and nephrosis: 50,476 (16.2 / 100,000)
    Influenza and Pneumonia: 50,097 (16.1 / 100,000)
    Intentional self-harm (suicide): 38,364 (12.3 / 100,000)

    Well hey, would you look at that.
    Maybe gun violence is being blown out of proportion?

    Funny how we don't hear the same public outrage about the rest.
    I guess nothing makes a good story like scarring the shit out of people. Horror stories are always in season.
    But no, the media would never exploit public emotion like that.
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      Jan 20 2013: Thank you for pointing this out! The US uses far more clubs and hammers as homicidal weapons than they do firearms. I get really upset that firearms are so targeted because it's a diversion. The harder questions never get tackled when we bicker about guns.
    • Jan 20 2013: difference is your fellow citizen cannot give you heart disease unless they are Mac Donald's. your fellow citizen can shoot you. your premise is flawed that all causes of death are singular in features. also flawed in that the causes of death you mention have substantial public support for solving them. there are many heart disease campaigns, charities, and hospitals. The public outcry already happened when heart disease and cancer and a number of other medical conditions were brought to the public attention. and the idea that guns should not be addressed because there are bigger problems out there implies that there should be some limit to what the government address in a given area. where should we set the maximum? 4? 10 issues? and what should we tell those effected by the other 50 issues? tough luck?
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      Jan 20 2013: Thats firearm homicides, not firearm related suicides, firearm injuries, mass shootings, accidental deaths, domestic disputes. etc etc
    • Jan 21 2013: Yeah ... people die other ways too... so lets not question guns. Really? Children die of sports related head injuries so why should we enforce seatbelt laws? Do you see a gaping hole in your logic? Never mind, logical arguments have nothing to do with this situation.
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        Jan 21 2013: The question is not of death, the question is how you die: the question is after 60 whether you die of cancer or heart disease.. or do you get shot at 20 or 30 that makes a huge difference...even if it is happening to less number of people..
        .anyways all will die some day...so you can argue that it doesn't make a difference. But the question is not just of death. the question is also about the morality of a civilized society where people like John Moonstroller think its a part of your culture.
        I am an outsider and I don't have a say in your culture, but as an average human being I feel saddened to see innocents dying and when nothing is done about it. I feel the same in Kashmir and I feel the same here.
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        Jan 21 2013: I think, Gord, he meant to point out how sensationalized this topic is in the media, nothing more. Forgive me if I'm wrong.
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        Jan 21 2013: yeah but the debate is firearms and how to control them Gord
      • Jan 22 2013: Great analogy.
        Sports related head injuries do kill children, except not in the same quantities as children that die from neglecting to wear a seat belt.
        Hence, the proportional attention and safety regulations that stem from the problems.

        Oddly, our attention has been disproportionate lately in issues of concern.
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      Jan 21 2013: I think some wikipedia would help

      Country Total firearm-related death rate
      El Salvador 50.36
      Jamaica 47.44
      Honduras 46.70
      Guatemala 38.52
      Swaziland 37.16
      Mexico 25.14
      Colombia 11.10
      Brazil 11.01
      Panama 10.92
      United States 10.2

      I think you guys are the only developed country who could make it to the top 10 list, Congrats
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        Jan 21 2013: Well, we're going to look ridiculous against developed countries like Switzerland, Ireland, and France because our population is sprawling and we have an astronomical diversity to deal with, something I'm sure is contributing to cultural tension.
      • Jan 21 2013: Indeed, however how Suicide makes up the bulk of this firearm related death.

        Homicide - 3.6
        Suicide - 6.3
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          Jan 21 2013: so do you meant to say suicides are ok. Its just a split of a seconds thought that drives a human to suicide and if he survives that instinct or notion then he may survive and live his life. If a person can survive that depression for a while he may think again and may change his mind. And easy access of a lethal weapon will make it always easier for the person to take that decision . There is no way that he is going to kill himself with a knife because he knows its not easy. Firearms account for 50 percent of all suicides in US and statistics itself speak for it.
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          Jan 24 2013: Oh wow. I didn't know that suicide with firearms was double the homicide rate. Holy wow!
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          Jan 24 2013: Suicide by gun is a bit cleaner than some of the ways creative people use to kill themselves.

          Hehe, a morbid joke. Forgive me.
      • Jan 22 2013: Unable to reply to the comment above this one(so do you meant to say suicides are ok...), so ill reply here.

        That's a great point, and leads to a whole conversation of suicide, depression, and their "treatments" in the united states which is another thorough topic. But we'll stick to gun control.

        While the other 50 percent of suicide does acknowledge that he can and actually does kill him self with a knife on occasion, that is beyond the point.

        Our gun laws should, and if im not mistaken do, deem mentally unstable persons ineligible for gun ownership.

        The only problem is enforcement of these laws.

        Instead the media exploding with this "WAR ON GUNS", and the government banning more guns (like "assault rifles" which are not even assault rifles), we should put more effort into enforcing the already present gun laws. We should make it known through the media that instead of taking away the public's guns, we are cracking down on already illegal possessions of these guns, and making it harder to get into the wrong persons hands.

        There are many other topics, problems that effect the public much more greatly, that are being overshadowed by this. (US's great financial situation, our dependence on fossil fuel, our tumorous "defence" expenditures, the environmental ravaging of our land, our unsustainable population growth)
        Our real problems stem from exactly this: Ignoring major calamities, pushing them off until later, distracting ourselfs from them, and expecting the best.
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      Jan 21 2013: *Throughout the world, it is clearly seen that the more guns that the common people have in possession, the lower the rate of violent crime becomes.*


      Completely wrong, The more normal house holds possess fire arms the more is the fire arm related death, Come on guys this is not rocket science. I don't understand why would people make such Bizarre arguments. Ok I can make another bizarre counter argument, better to wear bullet proof jackets and travel around,

      Just have a look at the below article which compares the percentage of population per country having firearms and gun related death rate
      http://election.princeton.edu/2012/12/22/scientific-americans-gun-error/

      http://guncontrol.ca/wp-content/uploads/2012/08/moregunsmoredeaths2012.pdf
      • Jan 21 2013: You're completely correct. The more normal house holds have guns, the likelier it is to have a mishap.
        It is completely logical to predict a rise in gun related injures as more guns are available.
        It will always be impossible to get rid of death because of human error.

        But, this is where the difference between violent *crimes* and *gun* related injurys comes to play.

        It is also completely logical to assume that criminals would be less motivated to commit crimes if they are under the assumption that every other guy can protect themselves with a fire arm.
        Not only is it logical, but its proven.
        If your skeptical about the statistics between gun ownership and violent crimes i will be glad to source them to you, as im in a bit of a time crunch at the moment.
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          Jan 21 2013: You can send me in the statistics once you have time.But your argument then boils down to a simple point that who has a bigger gun or more fire power a criminal or a civilian.Then ask the logical question who would invest more money on guns a criminal or a civilian. May be a normal civilian will invest some money in buying a normal gun for self protection but a criminal would invest more than 10 times on it because its his professional tool.

          But lets say if guns are not available in market , then you don't need guns to protect yourself from some one having guns. And every illegal gun in America is legally made.
      • Jan 22 2013: Again, cant reply further, so heres my responce.

        First. Statistics.

        UK 2011
        Violent crime rate - 1360.07/100,000
        Position on gun control - No civilian gun ownership.

        USA 2011
        Violent crime rate - 387.6/100,000
        Position on gun control - Regulated civilian gun ownership.

        Yikes, what a difference. Lets check out a different demographic

        Chicago 2011
        Violent crime rate - 10.33/1,000
        Position on gun control - Extremely Restrictive gun control (can not carry outside of home)

        Phoenix 2011
        Violent crime rate - 5.52/1,000
        Position on gun control - Extremely lenient gun control (open (without a permit) and concealed (many cases without a permit) carry.)


        Now to your point. The argument does not boil down to gun power.

        Not only are Assault rifles extremely difficult to obtain * legally*. Criminals would not carry Assault rifles to rob a house.
        Not only that, but it doesn't matter if you have more fire power, this isnt war, this is a few people at most. Its whoever hits first.

        Anyway, criminals will get guns either way. Banning guns wont make it harder for criminals to get guns, but it will make it harder for citizens to get them.

        And every illegal gun being legally made in america is a bold statement. But one that dosent matter. America sells guns to different countries at rampage. Even to mexico. What they do, is none of its consideration. Gun restriction wont cool off the gun industry.

        To summarize : The more civilians (majority of citizens being good, law abiding citizens) that own guns, the higher the chance a violent criminal will get stopped, and the better defended a civilian is.
        As one could logically assume, and as backed by data, gun control averages parallel to violent crime rate.
        In the end, the more citizens own guns the safer the community becomes overall.
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          Jan 22 2013: Statistics is correct, but the way you read it is completely wrong . you are talking of a violent city with 37% African Americans(Chicago) leading to cultural tensions and on the other hand comparing it to a place where you have 6% of African Americans. This difference is the major cause of the difference you see there not the number of guns. So to make a comparison compare similar cities with similar demographics and who only differ in number of guns the average house hold possess.

          And for the decrease in crime rate
          "Based on this, framework, one model for the per-capital gun death rate D would be D = V * G * k, where V is the average tendency toward violence and G is availability of guns, with killing power k factored in. One could get fancier by through stratification: different groups have a different rate of V, and different guns have different effects, and so on. But the core idea is the same."
          So here you are comparing a city with high V to a city with Low V.

          Further this article say
          Horgan points out that since 1993, the number of gun homicides has decreased, despite the fact that there are more guns than ever. Therefore, he asserts, more guns (G) do not lead to more killing.

          "The logical hole here is that the parameter V has declined over time, as part of an overall decrease in crime." And in the same period non violent crimes also decreased suggesting that its not the guns its a tendency to do the crime has decreased over a time from 1993.

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