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U.S. Second Amendment: post-Heller



 
 
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  #1  
Old July 11th, 2008, 3:16 pm
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U.S. Second Amendment: post-Heller

On June 26, 2008, the U.S. Supreme Court released a historic ruling on the Second Amendment, ruling that handguns are arms protected by the Second, and affirming an individual right to carry arms, striking down Washington D.C.'s handgun ban as unconstitutional.

1. Do you agree or disagree with the SCOTUS ruling? Why?

2. What are the likely ramifications of this decision on other cities with firearms restrictions, such as San Francisco or Chicago?

3. The Court seemed to think that some restrictions on firearms were permissible under the Second Amendment, leaving it to future cases to flesh out the specifics. What do you predict will be the outcome?

4. What do you predict the practical real-world consequences of this case will be?

5. (New question): With Obama in the White House and a Democratically-controlled Congress, what direction do you think gun rights and restrictions will take?



Last edited by Chris; July 24th, 2009 at 4:09 pm.
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  #2  
Old July 15th, 2008, 4:26 pm
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Re: U.S. Second Amendment: post-Heller

Quote:
1. Do you agree or disagree with the SCOTUS ruling? Why?
Agree. The second amendment is and has always been quite clear. People have the right to carry and bear arms with certain restrictions, such as a court house.

Quote:
2. What are the likely ramifications of this decision on other cities with firearms restrictions, such as San Francisco or Chicago??
Hard to say. I haven't seen any hard evidence that shows the handgun ban in DC made a lick of difference there. IMO, criminals can get handguns easier than law abiding citizens.


Quote:
3. The Court seemed to think that some restrictions on firearms were permissible under the Second Amendment, leaving it to future cases to flesh out the specifics. What do you predict will be the outcome?
IMO, where lawmakers can make a difference is with assault-type weapons, forbidding dealers to create a supply of the type of guns that would fail a reasonableness test...e.g. a fully automatic machine gun or a gun that could easily be converted from semi-automatic to automatic.


Quote:
4. What do you predict the practical real-world consequences of this case will be?
Difficult to say short term. Long term, it could lead to better laws to help eliminate assault weapons from the market. In the end, we must continue to focus on the social issues that drive homicide rates. Remember, guns don't kill people...people kill people.


Quote:
5. Do you think the Heller decision will make gun rights more or less of an election-year issue for the 2008 presidential election?
Same as last year...too many other hot topics to trump guns.


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  #3  
Old July 15th, 2008, 8:17 pm
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Re: U.S. Second Amendment: post-Heller

1. Do you agree or disagree with the SCOTUS ruling? Why?
I agree with it. The Second Amendment isn't vague. Citizens have the right to bear arms.

2. What are the likely ramifications of this decision on other cities with firearms restrictions, such as San Francisco or Chicago?
I would assume handgun bans in other cities will be deemed unconstitutional as well.

3. The Court seemed to think that some restrictions on firearms were permissible under the Second Amendment, leaving it to future cases to flesh out the specifics. What do you predict will be the outcome?
I assume automatic weapons will stay illegal, as they should. Handguns are reasonable means of self defense. Full auto Uzis are not.

4. What do you predict the practical real-world consequences of this case will be?
Lots of people that live in rough neighborhoods in DC will buy handguns, and I don't blame them at all for doing so. I live 30 minutes from DC, there are reports of violent crime every night on the local news. Criminals have always had guns there, the difference now is they don't know if a potential victim is carrying a gun or not, hopefully that uncertainty will prevent some crime.

5. Do you think the Heller decision will make gun rights more or less of an election-year issue for the 2008 presidential election?
Gun Rights have come to the forefront a bit more, but its a pretty clear issue. The Second Amendment guarantees gun rights, and it's moronic to support legalization of automatics, so there's really no room for argument aside from restrictions on sales and things like background checks and waiting periods.


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  #4  
Old July 15th, 2008, 9:00 pm
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Re: U.S. Second Amendment: post-Heller

Is it obnoxious to take credit for having this thread open up?

Well, anyway for the Mods and Admin agreeing to my request to start the topic back up again in this context.


Quote:
1. Do you agree or disagree with the SCOTUS ruling? Why?
Absolutely, in terms of finally laying to rest the "meaning" of the 2nd Amendment as applying to an individual right to bear arms. I just think it was scary that it was not 9-0 on this issue. 5-4 is too close for comfort. Now we have to worry about our Constitutional rights based on Kennedy's mood that morning. YIKES!


Quote:
2. What are the likely ramifications of this decision on other cities with firearms restrictions, such as San Francisco or Chicago?
Well, SCOTUS did not rule on whether the 2nd Amendment applies to the States through the 14th Amendment, probably because that was not before them since the law was from D.C. which is governed by the Federal Government. The Constitution applies directly the the Federal Government from its inception and only certain things in it apply to the States via the 14the Amendment as decided by SCOTUS.

However, I'm sure groups will bring lawsuits in the hopes of getting up SCOTUS in order to make that decision. I hope that SCOTUS will say that they apply to the States and I think on that basis those broad bans will be struck down, but I think reasonable regulations will hold.


Quote:
3. The Court seemed to think that some restrictions on firearms were permissible under the Second Amendment, leaving it to future cases to flesh out the specifics. What do you predict will be the outcome?
SCOTUS did not state what standard of review would be given to such laws (strict scrutiny - like for race and 1st Amendment rights; intermediate scrutiny - like for gender; or minimal scrutiny - like for other laws relating to commerce and such). I would think intermediate scrutiny would be fair since while the right to bear arms is important as it is specifically stated in the Constitution, there are also more issues of health, safety and welfare that have to be taken into consideration that are not otherwise an issue for say 1st Amendment rights.

And it sounds like intermediate might be the way they were going given the list of examples they gave where restrictions seemed okay.

I think that's a fair compromise. After all, all rights come with some restrictions, otherwise there would be complete chaos.

Quote:
4. What do you predict the practical real-world consequences of this case will be?
I think people will find that crime rates will go down dramatically in places where bans are lifted, but not necessarily go away. Guns only make it easier for certain crimes to be committed. The problem is not guns, but our culture and society and how we deal with criminals and how we teach our children to behave in our society. Getting rid of the guns does nothing to stop them from still being here. Prohibition didn't work to keep alcohol out of the U.S. That's why there were speakeasies. Reasonable regulations (like age limits, forbidding felons and mental patients to have guns, even limits on things like bazookas and rocket launchers) make more sense along with a change in the culture.

People will find that avid gun-owners are not the crack-pots they have been made out to be. My husband grew up with guns all of his life and has never committed a crime or shot anyone. He goes target shooting and enjoys it and we keep a gun for self-defense purposes in the house. He was taught gun-safety from day one as was I (by my husband and his father). He never "played" with them as a kid because he knew that his father would discipline him (and BOY HOWDY!). That's what it comes down to. Taking personal responsibility for the ownership of the gun. I mean if the amount of deaths caused is a reason to ban an object, then we should all be riding bikes and taking subways and trains and we should have no cars. Or knives, or baseball bats, etc. etc. etc. It's not the object, it's our lack of personal responsibility and the lack of teaching our children correctly to handle life's pitfalls. It's an organic change. If the Swiss can have weapons in every home and their murder rate is next to nil, that tells you a lot. It's not the gun, it's the culture.

I think that's what we should be focusing on now.


Quote:
5. Do you think the Heller decision will make gun rights more or less of an election-year issue for the 2008 presidential election?
Only for purposes of SCOTUS appointments that will surely come up in the next 4 to 8 years as at least two Justices are up for retirement (I think). Could Heller be overturned by a more liberal court? Anything is possible, but if Roe v. Wade has not been overturned in over 30 years, I doubt this one will. I think now it will just come down to "reasonable regulation" as with many other things in this country.


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  #5  
Old July 22nd, 2008, 3:50 am
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Re: U.S. Second Amendment: post-Heller

Quote:
1. Do you agree or disagree with the SCOTUS ruling? Why?
Wholeheartedly agree. I believe in reasonable restrictions, but how is prohibiting law abiding citizens from owning guns reasonable? This ban, like the one in Chicago, is clearly unconstitutional.

Quote:
2. What are the likely ramifications of this decision on other cities with firearms restrictions, such as San Francisco or Chicago?
I'm sure there are efforts right now to bring those bans to court. Hopefully this Heller decision is the death knell for these bans. Unfortunately, common sense (crime/murder rates in Chicago are sky high) hasn't been enough to strike these bans. Now that there is at least some legal precedent, those bans days are numbered.

Quote:
3. The Court seemed to think that some restrictions on firearms were permissible under the Second Amendment, leaving it to future cases to flesh out the specifics. What do you predict will be the outcome?
Obviously it should be case-by-case. For example, the automatic weapons ban was clearly a reasonable restriction by anyone except the most stringest of gun proponents. Hopefully we can reinstate that restriction.

Quote:
4. What do you predict the practical real-world consequences of this case will be?
I believe more municipalities will legislate conceal-and-carry laws with licenses. Not sure exactly how I feel about that, but that seems reasonable.

Quote:
5. Do you think the Heller decision will make gun rights more or less of an election-year issue for the 2008 presidential election?
Probably a little less, since guns-rights activists got a cookie that they wanted.


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  #6  
Old July 22nd, 2008, 12:14 pm
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Re: U.S. Second Amendment: post-Heller

As a non-American it always strikes me as odd that owning a gun is held so close to American hearts, if you want to solve a problem of gun crime surely the last thing you want to do is to encourage more people to carry them.


  #7  
Old July 22nd, 2008, 3:17 pm
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Re: U.S. Second Amendment: post-Heller

Quote:
Originally Posted by unconvinced View Post
As a non-American it always strikes me as odd that owning a gun is held so close to American hearts, if you want to solve a problem of gun crime surely the last thing you want to do is to encourage more people to carry them.
Another point of view:

Sometimes a person will see a sign on the window, or front lawn...or somewhere visible, that says "Protected by Smith and Wesson." (Gun manufacturer) Not too big of a deal. For all anyone knows there may not be any firearms in the place at all.

But how many are willing to put a sign up saying "There are no guns in this residence?" (or similar sign)

Perhaps in another country you may not have too much to worry about. But here? It would be an invitation for some sort of criminal activity.


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  #8  
Old July 22nd, 2008, 3:27 pm
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Re: U.S. Second Amendment: post-Heller

Quote:
Originally Posted by unconvinced View Post
As a non-American it always strikes me as odd that owning a gun is held so close to American hearts, if you want to solve a problem of gun crime surely the last thing you want to do is to encourage more people to carry them.
That seems to be a common misnomer internationally. Gun crimes have become more common in areas where gun bans have been instituted, D.C. being the best example. No matter how gun rights oponents try to spin the numbers, the crime rates speak for themsleves and are impactful enough to be a big factor in this ruling. Even in areas where there is no ban, but private ownership is less common, crime rates are higher.
The problem with gun crime is that criminals don't care about gun bans or laws. By banning personal ownership of firearms we guarantee two things: 1. That we are going to make criminals of otherwise law abiding citizens when they obtain a gun for protection and 2. That criminals with guns will be much bolder as they can safely assume they are the only one bringing a gun to the situation.

The second misnomer is that protecting the right to own a gun is somehow "encouraging more people to carry them". This isn't a mandatory gun ownership law, it is a protection of the right to own a gun if you choose to. This ruling is not designed to arm everybody, but it is to protect the right of private citizens to own a weapon if they so desire or feel the need to.

I think some people have the impression that gun bans remove all the guns. One quick look at the D.C. violent crime statistics should disspell that for everyone.


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  #9  
Old July 22nd, 2008, 3:37 pm
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Re: U.S. Second Amendment: post-Heller

Lupe - you quote that gun crimes went up in DC following the original ban. Got any links?


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  #10  
Old July 22nd, 2008, 7:38 pm
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Re: U.S. Second Amendment: post-Heller

Quote:
Originally Posted by chparadise View Post
Lupe - you quote that gun crimes went up in DC following the original ban. Got any links?
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Imagec_crime.png

There is a chart.

http://www.justfacts.com/guncontrol.asp

Here is some numbers as well on the subject of the outcome of this decision.


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Last edited by OldLupin; July 22nd, 2008 at 7:44 pm.
  #11  
Old July 23rd, 2008, 3:39 am
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Re: U.S. Second Amendment: post-Heller

Quote:
Originally Posted by OldLupin View Post
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Imagec_crime.png

There is a chart.

http://www.justfacts.com/guncontrol.asp

Here is some numbers as well on the subject of the outcome of this decision.
I see the Wikipedia stats, but not the connection. The handgun ban was instituted in 1975, while the rise in crime began in the late 1980s and decreased through the 1900s and 2000s until now; currently, it's slightly above the level it was at in 1975.

Nonetheless, I don't dispute the Supreme Court ruling. Most Americans seem to regard the 2nd Amendment as conferring the right to have a gun, regardless of the "well-armed militia being necessary to the security of a free state" line. At any rate, it's not my job to argue with the US Supreme Court about the meaning of the US Constitution.

My perspective is that basic handguns and hunting rifles should be allowed; machine guns and related weaponry should be banned or heavily regulated. No law-abiding citizen has any need for the latter. Secondly, people owning guns should be held responsible for any actions committed by a minor with that gun; that's some incentive to parents to keep guns away from their kids and reduce the number of school shootings. One can say "guns don't kill people, people kill people," but the fact is that guns make it a lot easier; if Columbine had happened with a knife, probably nobody would have died. Thirdly, the Brady Bill described in the second link sounds like a good idea to me, and the statistics seem to support it:
Quote:
Originally Posted by Just Facts - Gun Control
The Brady Bill was implemented in February of 1994. In 1997, the number of violent crimes committed with firearms had fallen 25% since 1994, while the overall number of violent crimes had declined 14%.


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Last edited by WarriorEowyn; July 23rd, 2008 at 3:45 am.
  #12  
Old July 23rd, 2008, 7:02 pm
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Re: U.S. Second Amendment: post-Heller

Quote:
Secondly, people owning guns should be held responsible for any actions committed by a minor with that gun; that's some incentive to parents to keep guns away from their kids and reduce the number of school shootings.
The fact is that in CA, parents are held responsible for certain acts of their minor children, usually negligence. I'm sure many other states have similar laws. And even if there aren't specific statutes, common law may actually cover it anyway.

One problem with gun laws I have (and many other laws) is that no one bothers to check the registry to see if there are laws already on the books that cover those instances. So instead, we think of a hundred new ones and honestly, most of them do not accomplish what they were enacted for. They are "feel good" laws that make us feel like we've accomplished something, like the L.A. City Council's new ban on plastic bags or the lightbulb fiasco. The L.A. City Council is also looking to ban any new fast food restaurants from the City because they think the kids are too tubby.

Old Lupe and others have already pointed that out - banning guns does not stop the criminals from getting them, even the so-called "assault" rifles. Bad guys will still get them (and use them to kill), doing nothing to actually protect the public. Whereas my husband has several assault-type rifles and has never killed anyone yet.

Now, that doesn't mean I'm a real "gun-nut" or anything. I do believe in reasonable restrictions, but I'm always aware that BANS really do not do what they are intended to do because the bad guys still get them. Maybe we should require more safety lessons for people who want the assault rifles to make sure they know what they are doing or something.

I mean, what is the rational behind banning assault rifles - I don't need it? Well, I don't think people need lots of different things, but it doesn't sound like much of a constitutional way to regulate citizens, IMHO.

Safety? Again, bad guys will still get them; safety training may just take care of it so that law-abiding people won't shoot themselves in the foot.

To me, the only real thing that makes sense is safety and that's where the laws on the books need to be reviewed and we need to decide what's really going to make things more safe. That's why I have no problem with banning felons, minors and the mentally ill from owning guns. That's why I would have no problem if safety school and tests were required (with exceptions for those that can already show they have that training - police, military, etc.).

And that doesn't mean I think we get to have bazookas or RPG. There is a limit, I agree.

And I'm also reminded that nothing in life is 100% risk free. NOTHING. But it seems that our law-makers and certain elements in society wish to have a completely risk free world. That's not possible, not even under a totalitarian regime.

More safe, yes, that's fine, if it works. But complete safety. No, not going to happen, IMHO.


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  #13  
Old July 26th, 2008, 8:04 pm
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Re: U.S. Second Amendment: post-Heller

1. Do you agree or disagree with the SCOTUS ruling? Why?
I absolutely agree. Certain groups have been trying to re-interpret the Second Amendment for far too long.

2. What are the likely ramifications of this decision on other cities with firearms restrictions, such as San Francisco or Chicago?
Hopefully those cities will be forced to lift their oppressive and unconstitutional firearms laws, although I'm sure they will try to delay as long as possible and waste quite a bit of money fighting it.

3. The Court seemed to think that some restrictions on firearms were permissible under the Second Amendment, leaving it to future cases to flesh out the specifics. What do you predict will be the outcome?
Probably the same restrictions that most states already enforce. No guns for minors, convicts, or the mentally unstable, and no firearms in certain places such as schools, government buildings, etc.

4. What do you predict the practical real-world consequences of this case will be?
As I mentioned before, those cities that enforce unconstitutional gun laws will probably waste a good deal of money trying to keep those laws in place, or to pass new laws after the current ones are overturned. Once people in those area's are allowed to carry firearms, I expect we will see a considerable decrease in violent crime.

5. Do you think the Heller decision will make gun rights more or less of an election-year issue for the 2008 presidential election?
I doubt it will make much difference. This coming election will be little more than a farce, with little room for serious issues.


  #14  
Old July 24th, 2009, 2:34 pm
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Re: 111th US Congress: Version 2

Quote:
Originally Posted by purplehawk View Post
I have a hard time believing those who crafted the Bill of Rights had any inkling of how their words would be twisted into today's gun laws. It made a lot of sense when people were still angry at the British government and determined not to be stuck under another tyranny, when Spain ruled almost everything south of the colonies and France ruled the north, and when 80% of the country was unexplored.
I think Madison, Jefferson, and Adams would be shocked to see how poorly the right to keep and bear arms was received by future generations. To them the ultimate symbol of trust in the citizenry was that the US government, unlike many others of the day, allowed individual citizens to keep and bear privately held munitions. Jefferson alone had many many guns, cannon, muskets, and other such weapons. It as a demonstration of power and freedom because the government was not just giving the people the right to overthrow it, but also the tools by which to do so.

Samuel Adams once said ,"Constitution shall never be construed . . . to prevent the people of the United States who are peaceable citizens from keeping their own arms"

The original version of the 2nd Amendment, as written by Madison read, "That right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed; a well armed and well regulated militia being the best security of a free country; but no person religiously scrupulous of bearing arms shall be compelled to render military service in person."

On the issue of gun rights, many historians agree that the right was intended to be an individual right.

Quote:
None of that exists today. I personally can't buy the "need to protect" bit, especially as most of the gun-related crime we hear about these days comes from murder-suicides in which the gun owner chooses to slaughter his wife and kids, and then turns the weapon on himself. What might have helped? Not arming the wife or the kids, surely. The one law that could have helped the victims is the one, as yet unwritten, that disarmed the husband.
The vast majority of crimes and accidents involving firearms are gang and drug related. Yes, there are incidents of domestic violence where one partner murders the other and then turns the weapon on him or herself. But the vast majority of crimes involving firearms are gang or drug related and involve the use of a weapon obtained illegally.

According to the Bureau of Justice Statistics, crimes involving firearms have declined considerably in the last 15 years. In 2004, less than 10% of the violent crimes in this country involved a gun. Among those individuals arrested and imprisoned for gun related crimes, over 80% reported that they obtained the gun illegally. Only 2% reported that they purchased the gun at gun shows.

Looking at gun control legislation, I have to ask what the objective of the legislation is. If the intent of gun law is to reduced gun related crime, then we need to develop means of dealing with gangs and drugs more effectively because they are the primary source of gun violence and illegal transfer of weapons. Unfortunately, gun control legislation is almost exclusively aimed at reducing access for law abiding citizens. Why, if it's the illegal sale and transfer of weapons to gang members and drug dealers that's the source of most of the gun violence? If over 80% of those convicted of committing a gun related crime admit that they obtained the gun illegally, how will reducing legal access to guns reduce that?

It seems far more likely, to me, that the intent of gun control legislation is to take guns away from everyone - to virtually repeal the 2nd Amendment without having to go through the hassle of drafting an Amendment and getting it ratified. Unfortunately, in my opinion, considering the facts related to gun violence, that will do nothing to reduce gun violence.

http://www.ojp.usdoj.gov/bjs/glance/guncrime.htm


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Last edited by monster_mom; July 24th, 2009 at 2:39 pm.
  #15  
Old July 24th, 2009, 2:52 pm
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Re: 111th US Congress: Version 2

Quote:
Originally Posted by monster_mom View Post
I think Madison, Jefferson, and Adams would be shocked to see how poorly the right to keep and bear arms was received by future generations. To them the ultimate symbol of trust in the citizenry was that the US government, unlike many others of the day, allowed individual citizens to keep and bear privately held munitions. Jefferson alone had many many guns, cannon, muskets, and other such weapons. It as a demonstration of power and freedom because the government was not just giving the people the right to overthrow it, but also the tools by which to do so.

Samuel Adams once said ,"Constitution shall never be construed . . . to prevent the people of the United States who are peaceable citizens from keeping their own arms"

The original version of the 2nd Amendment, as written by Madison read, "That right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed; a well armed and well regulated militia being the best security of a free country; but no person religiously scrupulous of bearing arms shall be compelled to render military service in person."

You sound just like an activist judge.

The original version and Adams's personal belief are entirely irrelevant. What matters (as 2nd amendenters constantly bang on about) is what is written in the Constitution.

Quote:
Unfortunately, gun control legislation is almost exclusively aimed at reducing access for law abiding citizens.
So those sensible law abiding citizens can leave a loaded handgun under their bed where a toddler can find it and shoot himself in his face off.

http://www.independent.co.uk/news/wo...d-1758807.html

How many babies are you willing to see die this way to preserve your precious right?


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  #16  
Old July 24th, 2009, 3:54 pm
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Re: 111th US Congress: Version 2

Quote:
Originally Posted by Wab View Post
You sound just like an activist judge.
Or someone who has actually taken the time to read the Constitution.

Quote:
The original version and Adams's personal belief are entirely irrelevant. What matters (as 2nd amendenters constantly bang on about) is what is written in the Constitution.
I never said that what was written in the Constitution was irrelevant, did I? I merely provided the actual statements of several of our nations founders so that their actual opinions on the issue would be known as their opinions on the issue had been called into question by a previous poster.

Quote:
So those sensible law abiding citizens can leave a loaded handgun under their bed where a toddler can find it and shoot himself in his face off.
I'd say any law abiding citizen who has a loaded handgun under the bed in a house with a toddler is a fool.

According to the National Safety Council, in 2000 in the United Stated 230 children under the age of 24 died as a result of gun violence. By contrast, 400 children under the age of 24 died of suffocation and 1300 died as a result of falls. Drowning took another 2850 children. Car accidents took the lives of 24,200 children.

Which should be a greater concern - 230 deaths due to guns or 24,200 deaths due to cars?

Many more lives could be saved by properly educating people on the use of child safety seats, distracted or reckless driving, and getting drunk drivers off the road.

http://www.guncite.com/images/accidents/nsc-9.gif


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  #17  
Old July 24th, 2009, 4:04 pm
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Re: 111th US Congress: Version 2

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Originally Posted by monster_mom View Post
Or someone who has actually taken the time to read the Constitution.
You were citing statements that aren't in the Constitution.

Quote:
I never said that what was written in the Constitution was irrelevant, did I? I merely provided the actual statements of several of our nations founders so that their actual opinions on the issue would be known as their opinions on the issue had been called into question by a previous poster.
I didn't say you said the Constitution is irrelevant. What is irrelevant in a discussion about the Constitution are statements which were never included.

Quote:
I'd say any law abiding citizen who has a loaded handgun under the bed in a house with a toddler is a fool.
A fool but one who is exercising their rights. I find it simply appalling that anyone can dismiss this as mere "foolishness".

And you dodged the question. How many?

Americans bang on about their rights but speak very little of the responsibilities and costs that come with them.

Quote:
Which should be a greater concern - 230 deaths due to guns or 24,200 deaths due to cars?
Gun deaths because privately owned cars have a role in civilised society.


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  #18  
Old July 24th, 2009, 4:08 pm
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Re: 111th US Congress: Version 2

Bringing this back from purely a gun rights battle to Congress' role in the gun rights debate, I think that the NRA is taking advantage of a fleeting chance they have to scare everyone into expanding gun rights. I could be wrong, but I'd like to see what legislation Holder or Obama have proposed to restrict gun rights. My prediction is that this Congress and Obama's first term will go down as the period of the largest expansion in gun rights in a while - purely because everyone is so scared of them trying to do the opposite. It's politically a brilliant tactic - exploit the fears people have of restriction to actually end up in an expansion - but that doesn't mean those of us who think that there should be reasonable restrictions on the types and locations of weapons can't be unhappy with the direction. I don't want to stop law-abiding citizens from owning a handgun or hunting rifle or competition pistols, etc, I just think that it isn't a violation of the second amendment to ask to restrict assault weapons, for instance. That same citizen can still own many other weapons, I just think we have to draw a line.

On a related note, here's our existing, half-forgotten Gun rights thread. I've edited the last question to reflect the election of Obama. For purely second-amendment issues, it's OK to continue there.


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  #19  
Old July 24th, 2009, 5:04 pm
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Re: 111th US Congress: Version 2

Quote:
Originally Posted by Wab View Post
You were citing statements that aren't in the Constitution.

I didn't say you said the Constitution is irrelevant. What is irrelevant in a discussion about the Constitution are statements which were never included.
The poster to whom I was responding had stated that she had a difficult time believing that the individuals who crafted the Bill of Rights had "any inkling of how their words would be twisted into today's gun laws." I was merely citing the actual sentiments on the issue from the people who actually wrote the Bill of Rights so that their intent would not be called into question. Their intent, their belief, was that the right to keep and bear arms was an individual right.

Quote:
A fool but one who is exercising their rights. I find it simply appalling that anyone can dismiss this as mere "foolishness".
Would you prefer stupid, dumb, idiotic? The parents were the fools who had a loaded gun in an area where a child could reach it. Those parents are suffering because their own stupidity caused their child to die. Is that a harsh thing to say? Absolutely. But if you own a gun and have children in your home, just like if you own a car or a pool, you have a responsibility to ensure that it is safely stored and out of sight. Keeping a loaded gun under a bed in a home with a toddler is stupid and irresponsible.

Quote:
Americans bang on about their rights but speak very little of the responsibilities and costs that come with them.
You must think very poorly of Americans.

Most of the Americans I know accept the responsibility of exercising their rights as a part of life. While I don't personally own a gun, many of my friends and family members do, and my children are supervised when they're in their homes. My children have also been given guidance on guns and know not to play with them.

If you own a gun and have small children in your home then you have a responsibility to ensure that the gun isn't in a location where children can reach it. If you have a pool in your backyard and small children in your home then you have a responsibility to ensure that the children can't get into the pool without supervision. More children die of accidental drownings in backyard pools than of gun related accidents every year, yet I don't see anyone calling for laws restricting pools. I don't see anyone calling for laws requiring parents who have a pool to have alarms installed or mandating covers that can bear the weight of a child be installed and that the pool be closed whenever the adults aren't present.

Quote:
Gun deaths because privately owned cars have a role in civilised society.
A drunk driver behind the wheel of a car has no place in society. A guy operating a city bus while texting has no role in society. Yet each of these individuals is behaving in an irresponsible manner. Just like parents who keep a loaded gun under a bed in a home with a toddler are behaving in an irresponsible manner.


***Edit****

OOPs - I was typing slowly and didn't see Chris' post. Sorry about that!

Quote:
Originally Posted by chparadise View Post
Bringing this back from purely a gun rights battle to Congress' role in the gun rights debate, I think that the NRA is taking advantage of a fleeting chance they have to scare everyone into expanding gun rights. I could be wrong, but I'd like to see what legislation Holder or Obama have proposed to restrict gun rights. My prediction is that this Congress and Obama's first term will go down as the period of the largest expansion in gun rights in a while - purely because everyone is so scared of them trying to do the opposite. It's politically a brilliant tactic - exploit the fears people have of restriction to actually end up in an expansion - but that doesn't mean those of us who think that there should be reasonable restrictions on the types and locations of weapons can't be unhappy with the direction. I don't want to stop law-abiding citizens from owning a handgun or hunting rifle or competition pistols, etc, I just think that it isn't a violation of the second amendment to ask to restrict assault weapons, for instance. That same citizen can still own many other weapons, I just think we have to draw a line.
I'd say you're giving the Republican's in Congress more credit for strategic thinking than they deserve.

My understanding of the bill is that it would allow people who have a permit to carry a concealed weapon carry that weapon into other states with similar laws rather then requiring them to get a permit in every state they visit. So, if a person has a permit to carry a concealed weapon in Virginia they couldn't bring the gun into DC where local laws prohibit concealed weapons, but they could carry the weapon into West Virginian without getting a West Virginia permit because both West Virginia and Virginia have similar laws allowing concealed weapons.

I also understood that the bill would prohibit "permit shopping" and would require that people only get permits in the state in which they reside. So, in the example above, a person who lives in DC would not be able to get a permit from VA.


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Last edited by monster_mom; July 24th, 2009 at 5:16 pm.
  #20  
Old July 24th, 2009, 5:25 pm
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Re: 111th US Congress: Version 2

Quote:
Originally Posted by MonsterMom
More children die of accidental drownings in backyard pools than of gun related accidents every year, yet I don't see anyone calling for laws restricting pools. I don't see anyone calling for laws requiring parents who have a pool to have alarms installed or mandating covers that can bear the weight of a child be installed and that the pool be closed whenever the adults aren't present.
Actually...we have laws here that require pool safety features like a secure fence around pools with a locking gate. This law was specifically asked for and passed to curb accidental drownings of children.

Personally, I don't see safety restrictions, increased registration/permit laws as a violation of a 2nd amendment right. I see them as safegards to protect the public as much as possible from accidental shootings, guns in the hands of the mentally unstable or criminal elements. I agree with Chris...lines must be drawn somewhere.


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