TED Conversations

Bob Dohse


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What gun-control or gun-rights reference is YOUR preferred source of factual information on the subject?

What published gun-control or gun-rights reference is YOUR preferred source of factual information on the subject?

Everyone, it seems, has an OPINION of guns and the limits of their legitimate use within society (if any). But upon WHAT is your opinion based? And WHY is that referenced source important for YOUR opinion.

Please share a published source of your choice, so others might better understand why you chose YOUR opinion.

And please share WHY that information is important to YOUR opinion.

The conversation is in English, but not limited to only the current debate within the United States.

Facts from around the globe are welcomed, but please don't presume that every nation or citizen must accept YOUR nation's laws, culture, or political process.

Thanks in advance for your cooperation in a considerate exchange of information. :-)


Closing Statement from Bob Dohse

It was interesting to read the different opinions people have on issues related to guns, and also their perspectives which help shape their opinions.

While we might not all agree on every point, I think we demonstrated that it was possible to have an agreeable discussion. That could possibly change in a situation where winners and losers were picked, but we avoided that problem with a TED "question" and not a TED "debate".

Perhaps there's a lesson in this ... that we might possibly be more agreeable citizens if we can somehow (as much as possible) search more for agreement and less for victory. Granted that this is not always possible, it's still a thought to ponder.

If I can keep a gun and find a way to keep my neighbor (who is not a gun advocate) happy, then we both end up happy. Conversely, if I can easily and willingly do something that addresses my neighbor's concerns (perhaps a gun safe to insure safety for children), then we are also both happy.

As a parting comment ... many thanks to Matt MacBradaigh, who provided links to other articles he's written and, thus, shared yet another avenue to exchange information.

And thanks to all for a pleasant dialog without rants and rages.

Warm regards.

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    May 11 2013: My opinion concerning gun control is based on principals. Though I would proudly cite the US Constitution as an argument against gun control, I don't feel I base my opinion on any legal code. I simply feel that the right to own weapons is essential for a free society.

    So I find the statistics irrelevant, sorry if that produces some face-smacks. One could lay out a solid case that a complete gun ban would absolutely eliminate gun-homocides, and I see a powerless population truly vulnerable to martial law.

    Also, I'm skeptical of positions that are pro gun-control, because they're often based on misinformation or deliberate propaganda. How many times have we seen the AR-15 referred to as the "assault rifle" that Adam Lanza used? Often immediately afterwards there's a scene of the police marching with AR-15's. Sandy Hook Elementary was surrounded by dozens of AR-15's when the police arrived. Yet it never catches the eye. It's an incredibly standard rifle, semi-automatic yet the media loves to push the image that its a machine gun with no legitimate purpose. 30 round magazines are referred to as "extended"... they're standard. The AR-15 isn't an assault rifle at all. It's an "assault weapon", a rifle that bares the same cosmetic features as an assault rifle, a political term coined for Clinton's FAWB. More propaganda.

    When I look at the general population's attitude towards gun control, I see much higher support for gun control in countries that really have it. The more gun control a country has, the higher the public's support. For me that's more evidence that there's little legitimacy to gun control, and that Statist opinions often come from people who have to cope with powerful States.

    And lastly, I'd like to believe I base my opinions on solid logic, or at least seeing through faulty logic. I don't see human beings as would-be mall shooters just waiting to get their hands on a gun. And I don't see gun control stopping the very, very few people who are.
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      May 11 2013: Thanks, Fred.

      As many owners know, the AR-15 is very useful in a variety of settings. There's an article floating around that gives a good overview of its versatility for clearly legal usage (hunting, etc.) ... I'll try to find it and post it here. I think you would enjoy reading it, and it would perhaps answer some of the other readers' questions about the weapon.

      And, yes, an "assault rifle" has a specific meaning as defined in US and NATO military manuals. The term "assault weapon" was created to collectively refer to a select group of weapons in a now-expired ban passed by the US Congress in the early 1990s. Outside of that old designation, the term is vague and not useful for detailed dialog. It generally creates more arguments than understanding.

      Thanks for sharing your perspective.

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