Gun-Crazy Country

Comments

1
The very next sentence in the article (after the paragraph Charles posted) is:
The trouble with America is that it is too democratic.
Ok, I know the author is talking about the tyranny of the majority and the problems with mass rule; however, that's still a bizarre sounding sentence: America is too democratic.

Also, I think the reason gun sales go up after an event like Saturday's is because gun owners fear that new gun control laws will be introduced/passed and they want to get stuff that they believe will be targeted to become illegal.
2
Yes, because what could possibly go wrong when you combine alcohol and deadly weapons?

What I'm simply unable to wrap my head around is how people simply refuse to see a correlation between the huge number of gun deaths in the US and the saturating presence of guns. If blow-torches were as common as guns and the US had a 3 times higher burn rate than Western and Central Europe, people might sit back and go "hmmm, maybe these two things are related?". Yet somehow, when it's guns, it's like the NRA has placed a firewall in their brains.
3
I don't own guns, but the events of the last week leave me wondering if I should. If there were an armed, right wing uprising, would you trust SPD to defend you?
4
They should allow guns in hospitals. I can't see anything wrong with sick/drugged people and guns.
5
#3 I wouldn't trust an PD to save my ass in the event of a right ring killing spree but I'd hope Canada would allow me entry as a refugee.
6
It does sound odd, Urgutha, and I know you get the underlying meaning, but to state the obvious: Whether it was civil rights legislation in the States a generation ago, or same-sex rights in Canada present day, sometimes people need to be rescued from their own ignorance.

Clearly gun control is a touchy issue in the States, especially in the west, and high ownership isn't the only factor (see Switzerland), but it would seem to me that there is something off about the reactions: Gun violence? Buy more guns. Elsewhere, if there were increased gun violence, I think the reaction would be more along the lines of: Tighter gun controls, stiffer sentences for illegal gun possession.
7
You can legally carry a gun in a bar here; I do it all the time. Hospitals too. Even the airport. Anywhere but schools, really. It doesn't seem to cause any problems.
8
@5280

It can cause problems. When I worked at Costco we'd have at least on person every two months flash a gun over the membership renewal fees.
Mind you they were crazy for threatening anyone over a small amount of money. But they were always incredibly ashamed when we called the cops and they realized how much they overreacted.
9
Just to clarify, a bar - or any business - can put up a sign prohibiting firearms on the premises. I haven't been to a bar or restaurant that didn't have the sign posted (and wouldn't patronize one if I found one). Additionally, it's illegal to drink alcohol in a bar if you're carrying a gun.

Here's a list of places that supposedly allow concealed carry:

http://www.asrpa.com/ccwcafe.html

Note the disclaimer at the top of the page, though: "Some of the following restaurants, cafes, and bistro’s welcome your patronage as an Arizona CCW licensee! Others do not."

Firstly, the mention of "an Arizona CCW licensee" is dated, since there is no longer a requirement for a license. Also, I'm guessing that many of the restaurants listed here fall under the "do not" category (Capital Grille, The Olive Garden!). The Barro's Pizza in Chandler, for example, has a No Firearms sign, I believe.
10
#8, that reminds me of stories I hear about jackwagons using their concealed carry permit as their ID whenever they needed to show it (to get beer etc) Usually they were miffed that someone questioned them and used the permit as a method of intimidation. Like, how dare you question me, I'm packing. Goes to show what kind of people yearn to tote guns around at all times
11
Personally, I knit in bars all the time.
12
@10, I do that all the time, but not for the reasons you mention. It's the only photo I'd I've got.
13
Tombstone, AKA "The Wild West", had more restrictive gun laws than Amurkuh today.

http://www.seattlepi.com/politico/433115…
14
I'm okay with this law on the sole condition that all bars be required to have those old-timey saloon doors that swing both ways.
15
@14, you forgot the out of tune piano played by a guy with a stripped shirt and garters on his arms.
16
As Westerns have taught us, saloons are dangerous places full of unsavory characters and that's why you need to carry a gun there to protect yourself. You another place that's dangerous and full of unsavory characters? Prison. They should allow people to carry concealed firearms there too. For protection.
17
Gun ownership is a psychological disorder. One of the manifestations is a total misunderstanding of "how the West was won", in which guns played a minor, inconsequential role.
18
Cheap, effective, penile enlargement surgery or drugs might help.

So would a decent welfare state, in which many people weren't at least a little afraid all the time.
19
@3: Agreed, whether it's a right-wing killing spree (Adolf) or a left-wing killing spree (Mao) it's always prudent to have protection at home. I do.
20
@17: Glamorized by Hollywood yes, but it does have its basis in fact.
21
In related news, people are finally starting to see what kind of place Arizona truly is.
22
@13

Exactly! The real "Wild West" is a whole lot different than the fake "Wild West" that we see on movies and TV.

Many towns and cities had anti gun ordinances. In many little towns during the period, you would have to drop off your guns to the sheriff as you entered the town.

The real history of guns in America is a whole lot different than what the NRA wants us to believe.

For most of American history, most Americans did not own guns. Guns were very expensive, especially prior to the Civil War; before Eli Whitney created interchangeable parts. Most pioneer families would own only one rifle, if they had one at all. Many of the pioneers, as their wagon trains moved west, would share rifles between several families.
23
Bailo @17, 20, how do you decide on which troll name to use from day to day (sometimes in the same thread)? Are you currently taking your medications?
24
@23: Your samefag detector needs tuning up.
25
@20

No, it does not have a basis in fact.

Most people did not own guns during the 1870s - 1890s.

Again, guns were too expensive.

Plus, there were many towns in the west where guns were not allowed into.
26
@24, Supreme Ruler of the Universe/Seattleblues/Phoebe on NE 79th/Loveschild/John Bailo

same batshit lunatic -- defy you to prove otherwise

there's many more, those are just the most common troll names here
27
@26

So the guys who comment with the batshit rightwing stuff?
Proving it would be difficult.
28
It is insane that this man was able to buy a clip with 33 rounds in it.

If the 1994 "Violent Crime Control and Law Enforcement Act" provision dealing with clip size had not been allowed to expire in 2004, Jared Loughner would "only" have been able to buy a ten round clip, and many of the victims in the Arizona shooting would not have been shot. Several of the people killed may have been still alive.
29
@26: You're the one alleging samefaggotry, thus the burden of proof is on you. (There is no way that Bailo/SRoTU is the same person as Loveschild or as Seattleblues.)
30
I use a gun just about every day for work. (You get yelled at if your groupings start to suck) I have a CCL, though I don't use it much.

But I don't think I'd ever take a gun into a bar. Just too much that can go wrong too fast.

I still believe that anyone who wants to own a firearm should be required to do 2 years of military service in any branch. A DI will teach you - in no uncertain terms - to respect your weapons.
31
Wrong, Passionate Jus. You could always buy a high-cap mag, even during the ban. They just cost a little more.
32
I spent ten years working in all kinds of clubs/bars, and there are a lot of guns floating around. Just one example, that I happened to witness, where a drunk guy shot someone and got away with it: http://www.thefreelibrary.com/Charges+dr…
33
@30, that sounds like the Switzerland model, where everyone has a gun -- a rifle, not a handgun -- and is required not only to serve in the military first but to attend regular militia meetings. And not half-assed right-wing private "militias" like the ones that were so popular with the Bo Gritz dipshit teabagger-antecedent crowd in the 90s, either, but a proper organized military drilling group.

I'm not sure I'm that keen on the idea, but it's surely better than everybody and his dog running down to the gun shop and arming up with no idea what the hell they're doing. Shooting at the range does not qualify, either. All those people are doing, should the insurrection come, is providing the enemy with a large free armory, when they take your stupid gun out of your shaking hand and kill you with it.

@20, you don't know what you're talking about. You know what was important in settling the west? Women. And pianos. And schools. And school plays. And cast-iron stoves. And general stores. And mills. And crews of men digging wells and building roads.

If you read a lot about the growth of towns in the west, as I have, and as you obviously have not, you'll encounter ALMOST NOTHING about firearms. Some hunting, mostly for recreation, and some crime, mostly garden-variety and not dissimilar to the kind we have today (except much, much less likely to involve a gun). The mythology of the outlaw and and the lawman was from the very beginning a media entertainment, starting well before there was anyplace named "Hollywood".
34
Wrong 5280

You were probably buying illegal or previously owned mags.

"the cutoff between a "normal" capacity and "high" capacity magazine was 3, 7, 10, 12, 15, or 20 rounds. The now defunct federal ban set the limit at 10 rounds."

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Federal_Ass…
35
@26: Why don't you register yourself? Oh, I get it ... you are a troll yourself - as they prefer not to register.
36
@33, is there any western town growth literature you can recommend?
37
@36, oh, jeez. Most of the stuff I'm referring to is primary sources, from some projects I did some years ago -- things like newspapers and courthouse documents, and town histories. I'm blanking on actual written history. For fiction, it's hard to beat Wallace Stegner. Try "Angle of Repose". Or Ivan Doig's "Dancing at the Rascal Fair".

There are shelves of books about the experience of frontier women. What you want depends on what you're interested in; the experience of women in, say, Seattle is very different from that in Montana or Dodge City or or Virginia City or wherever. But that's true of everything; I like to look at specific places. Books about Seattle, about California, about Montana.

The best books on the mythologizing of the West are those by Richard Slotkin. What's interesting, if you read them backward, is how much of what we think of as "history" is actually less than a hundred years old, and is pure mythology from that time, when the ideas of who we are as Americans were invented (this dynamic, a misty-eyed imagined past of recent vintage taking the place of any kind of true past) is also true of lots of other things, including "Christianity", "Scotland", and "British Royalty").

You can't ignore Mark Twain, of course, who was both myth-demolisher and myth-creator, and his lesser followers, including people like the very enjoyable but limited Booth Tarkington.

It is wrong, of course, to deny that the West was settled without violence: the destruction of the Indians. But that was accomplished by soldiers, not steely-eyed townspeople defending their babies. Again, the damage that Western towns did to the Indians was through the sheer inevitability of settlement taking over the land. In most places, this was accomplished by following the railroad. When you say "the West" you think of wide open spaces, but the West has always been by far the MOST urban part of America; the wide-open spaces are spaces between.
38
@36 - I know you weren't asking me, but here are some suggestions anyway:
"The Ladder of Rivers" is an interesting account of one of the really really bad guys in the Old West. A couple really awful incidents but mostly intimidation and manipulation.
"The Children's Blizzard" is another true story account of the settlement of the West and Midwest. Trains played a much bigger part in settlement and civilization than guns. Weather was violent enough for everybody.