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lukeiamyourdad
04-19-2007, 05:24 PM
As I said, I'd start a debate on the issues revolving around the Virginia Tech shooting. Things have started to die down and emotions aren't as raw as they were during the first two/three days and I think we're mature enough for a debate.

The events of Monday has renewed the debate on gun control. On one side, partisans of more gun control cite the incredible amount of gun violence for more restriction. Some even go for banning. On the other side, gun lovers don't want to hear anything about that. It is important, according to them, to take into account the other factors, especially the human one, into the equation. Guns are tools, no more dangerous in the hands of a normal person then a knife.

There's more to this however. Psychologists and other medical experts come into the game. Pretty much, what they claim is that there's no way of predicting someone's behavior. There may be some similarities between all of these mad gunmen, but no real pattern.

So the issue is a lot deeper then guns or no guns. Now, let's check out the positions and potential consequences of both parties.



For the pro-gun control crowd, the fact that weapons are so easy to obtain make it more likely to have violence. As such, a more severe restriction on guns, like the banning of assault rifles and many other weapons, is needed in order to keep madmen from going on killing rampages. The common argument is that without guns, there would be less casualties.

Now there's some problems with that reasoning. First, is that there's no serious indication that keeping guns out of psychological troubled individuals will lessen the chances of them committing mass murder. After all, not every serial killer was a gunman and another methods of killing might be used. So the number of casualties being lower is a supposition at best. The other problem is giving the black market and organized crime the monopoly on most firearm sales. If indeed, restrictions are put into place so that hunting rifles are the only weapons permitted, everything else will be in the hands of criminals for profit. Now, the counter-argument to that could be that Americans will simply have to live without guns. However, is it possible for such a gun loving people to give them up so easily?

Then there's the case of Switzerland. Almost every house there has an assault rifle. Yet, no mass killing. Strange isn't it? Doesn't it contradict everything? According to the BBC (http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/europe/1566715.stm), for a population of 6 million, there's 2 million publicly owned firearms including about 600 000 assault rifles. Now there's reasons to explain this, but I'll get back to that later.




People who are pro-guns and against tougher gun controls repeat every time that it's the fault of the person pulling the trigger and not the gun itself. Others even believe that if there was more guns, if every was armed, there would be less crime. Some even argue that it's to protect themselves from a tyrannical government.

Now, the first argument is indeed true. However, the problem remains that if anyone can get a gun, anyone can pull such a trigger, then society might have a few nutjobs with guns on its hands. Restrictions become a necessity, to weed out those who cannot use such an instrument rationally. The second argument is pure BS. What kind of society enjoys living in the fear of others, because everyone has a gun on himself? Peace perhaps of flesh, but not peace of mind. A state of constant fear of the other just snapping and pulling out his gun. In fact, if the people need to carry a gun with them at all times, it shows a much more alarming problem, being that crime rates are too high and that people are living in fear. The last argument is among the lines of neo-nazi nutjobs or paranoid idiots. If the US government ever became tyrannical, it would have the army behind it and no resistance group will survive that.




So, what do I believe is the right course of action? Well, neither. Both are impractical at best. So something in between might better work. Guns have to be restricted and very severely. Background checks have to be enforce with the utmost rigor. People with a history of mental illness, alcoholism, depression, ex-criminals, even a simple thief, should not have the right to have firearms. Also, a firearms registration system like the one in Canada would greatly help law enforcement. However, don't implement it like in Canada, that was a serious flop...billions wasted for a rather easy system to implement. There must be more then restricting guns however. The United States, with its high rate of gun violence must look at itself and seek durable solution to crime and the distress of many of its citizens. There is no outsider who can find a solution. Americans have to look at themselves and find a way to help those in need.



Now, back to Switzerland. It would seem that being quite rich and isolated has given them a shield against the social problems of more "open" countries like the United States but just because they have a natural shield does not mean that there is no other solution to the gun violence problem. Poverty and high crime rates is a correlation repeated constantly.



Now that I've dealt with guns, I'd like to get to more psychological problems. There has been a strange case here in Canada a while back, when a kid who wrote a very violent essay in Cornwall was arrested. Various authors came to his defense, claiming, and rightfully so, that if everyone who wrote something violent was sent to prison, 80% of the authors of this world would be interned as crazy. There has been continuous messages from different psychologists to people to "help" others by "denouncing" those who have a weird behavior. This is quite dangerous. It leaves the door open to a huge amount of abuse. A lot of kids in school look "weird". Does it mean that they really need help? Not really. The problem is that people who are unqualified to make accusations of psychological problem will start accusing everyone around them who looks weird. Is it ok the power to denounce a simple goth kid to the muscular guy who lives in a rich neighborhood? Most of us don't have the necessary knowledge for that and lots of kids will end up in psychological counseling when there's nothing wrong with them. Popular tribunal at its worst.

That's not to say that the parents and close friends should not be paying attention to what a kid is doing. The people who are close are the best at evaluating if someone needs help or not. Emphasis on the word "close".


I'm leaving the part about the media out, as I believe it to be totally irrelevant, considering that a rating system exists. The only problem is to enforce it. After all, this is a gaming forum and I don't expect anyone to pull a Jack Thompson around here...

Dagobahn Eagle
04-19-2007, 05:48 PM
Others even believe that if there was more guns, if every was armed, there would be less crime. You know, one thing I can't help but wonder about is why they don't universally apply that. Why not campaign for armed passengers? Surely, if every nice white Christian had an AK-47 on board, there'd be no duos of evil Arabic Muslims hijacking planes with can openers, would there? They'd need AKs on their own and bigger numbers, would they not?

Some even argue that it's to protect themselves from a tyrannical government.Nonsense. The people claiming this are the same as the ones fully endorsing the PATRIOT ACT, the disastrous illegal war on Iraq, torture of detainees, and bugging calls without warrants. They've shown themselves to desire tyrannic dictatorship, because they're too terrified of attack by terrorists.

So, what do I believe is the right course of action? Well, neither. Both are impractical at best. So something in between might better work. Guns have to be restricted and very severely. Background checks have to be enforce with the utmost rigor. People with a history of mental illness, alcoholism, depression, ex-criminals, even a simple thief, should not have the right to have firearms.Surely this is too strict.

Mental illness is more than just shooting up schools. Should ex-anorectic people be barred from gun purchase because they had an eating disorder 5 years ago? What about a person who was hospitalized for PTSD following a car crash?

Depression? Perhaps, but still too wide. I'd narrow it down to people with a history of lengthy or repeated history of suicidal or homicidal thoughts. It may not be true that more guns equal more homicides, but it has been proven beyond doubt that they greatly increase the number of suicides.

And petty theft? I don't think a person is more likely to shoot up a school just because they've been caught lifting a bar of chewing gum from the convenient store.

Now that I've dealt with guns, I'd like to get to more psychological problems. There has been a strange case here in Canada a while back, when a kid who wrote a very violent essay in Cornwall was arrested. Various authors came to his defense, claiming, and rightfully so, that if everyone who wrote something violent was sent to prison, 80% of the authors of this world would be interned as crazy.True. Stephen King would've been rushed to a mental hospital. The creators of the GTA or F.E.A.R. series would've been forced to undergo therapy. Agatha Christie would've bee lobotomized. It just can't be that way.

Sure, people should probably be examined if they exhibit symptoms of a love of brutal violence and death. But I don't know if this should be compulsory.

Likewise, simply acting 'weird' is not enough to give someone an involuntary hospital stay. If a person says he's going to kill himself and appears to mean it, of course he should be given psychiatric care. But simply for being a loner? No way.

Son of Skywalker15
04-19-2007, 07:19 PM
Posted by igyman in the VT Shooting Thread:

That's even worse. As if selling rifles on the street wasn't bad enough. Obviously America needs a more rigorous gun control and age verification policy.



Like I said, in this case, and in most cases of insanity driven murders, the tool doesn't matter. Death was in his mind, and he was going to get it no matter what he used. As for America's gun control policy, yes, it's flawed but it does go totally by our constitution;we have a right to bear arms... though in his case it was justified, it's still a right to buy weapons for defense. So, yes, we should revise our policy but it can't limit buying arms, just make it harder for young people and people who intend harm.

Bimmerman
04-19-2007, 08:45 PM
I'm going to say this upfront: I own guns.

That said, I am for a smart implementation of gun control. I don't think that requiring everybody to register their gun will solve anything except provide a list of potential suspects to police. What good can come from registering guns to gun owners, except for that?

Background checks are a good idea, and they are required to buy handguns here in Colorado. Preventing criminals, all criminals, from owning guns is also a good idea; simply extending the required background checks to all guns, both rifles, shotguns, and handguns, is sufficient. Adding more criteria such as misdemeanors(traffic violations excepted) and a check for a history of mental illness to the check would be another brilliant idea, as currently it's law that no felon can buy a gun, or a hunting license.

Banning assault rifles and high-capacity magazines is stupid. While there are few reasons to have high-capacity magazines, banning the rifles themselves is also highly counterproductive. For all of you who will, inevitably, play the "the assault weapon ban was genius!" ploy, the guns were not banned under that law.

It was written so that guns that looked badass would be banned. I'm not joking. My shotgun, which is a semi-auto 12 guage, would be banned even though it can only hold 3 rounds total at once, because the choke on the end of the barrel has a flash suppressor. My M1 carbine, because it has a a 25 round magazine and a rack that a bayonet could be mounted on(an accessory I don't have, and see no reason to buy) was banned under the law. But, I still have it. It's from WWII, and for the last twelve years it was impossible to buy one from anyone but the government. It can't fire full-auto or even in bursts, yet it was banned because it looks like an assault weapon. One of the guns the Columbine killers used, a TEC-9, was illegal under the assault weapon ban, yet they obtained one anyway...am I the only one who sees how useless the law was?

Truth is, real assault weapons(read: fully automatic weapons) are highly regulated by the government, requiring registration, licensing, and many many many dollars paid in fees. As a result, they cannot be regulated much more, and very few people have one(I don't, and don't want one- no purpose). Hence, politicians enacted the "ugly weapons" ban to be seen to do something while doing next to nothing productive at all. Many good semi-auto hunting rifles and shotguns were banned because of that law, and I am truly happy to see it go.

Gun control is a good idea, so long as it is implemented intelligently. Background checks, age limits, classes and training are all brilliant ideas and should be required nationally, not just here in CO(training and classes are only for concealed carry permits...why not everyone I have no idea.) Simply banning guns because they are look-alikes to real military assault weapons, banning them for political purposes, or regulating the hell out of them(registering) is stupid, counterproductive, and doesn't work.

My 02 cents, for now.

lukeiamyourdad
04-20-2007, 11:08 AM
My M1 carbine, because it has a a 25 round magazine and a rack that a bayonet could be mounted on(an accessory I don't have, and see no reason to buy) was banned under the law. But, I still have it. It's from WWII, and for the last twelve years it was impossible to buy one from anyone but the government. It can't fire full-auto or even in bursts, yet it was banned because it looks like an assault weapon.

But...the M1 Carbine doesn't even look like an assault weapon, at least in my opinion. It's a bloody semi-automatic. That is pretty stupid indeed. If we judged every gun by its looks, everything would be an assault weapon...


Gun control is a good idea, so long as it is implemented intelligently. Background checks, age limits, classes and training are all brilliant ideas and should be required nationally, not just here in CO(training and classes are only for concealed carry permits...why not everyone I have no idea.)

Training is indeed a good idea. I mean, they have to make sure you know how to drive a car in order to give you a driver's license. Why not do the same with guns? After all, it is a must to have basic training and knowledge in order to safely use a gun.

Prime
04-20-2007, 11:23 AM
Like I said, in this case, and in most cases of insanity driven murders, the tool doesn't matter. Death was in his mind, and he was going to get it no matter what he used. So you are saying that he would have been able to kill 32 people in that amount of time with a knife? I would argue that the tool does matter.

Dagobahn Eagle
04-20-2007, 01:04 PM
Training is a great idea. You can't own a car without a license and driver's ed, so why should you be able to own a gun without classes? Guns kill just as many each year as cars.

As for the 2nd amendment, for whatever it's worth it clearly refers to a 'well-organized militia', not to untrained, unorganized people who just want a gun so they can shoot ducks or start a collection and protect their home form burglars. I'm not saying we should ban guns, I'm just pointing out my interpretation of the amendment.

tk102
04-20-2007, 01:40 PM
For the most part I've typically thought the U.S. would be fine without the 2nd Amendment. I don't own any guns and no one in my family or extended family does either. So what if there was no hunting. :p

But upon further reflection and re-reading to Madison's argument for it, the 2nd Amendment safeguards against the Federal government's militia from taking control of the citizenry by force. In effect, it is a check and balance between the population and the government (esp. the Executive branch).

As for the 2nd amendment, for whatever it's worth it clearly refers to a 'well-organized militia', not to untrained, unorganized people who just want a gun so they can shoot ducks or start a collection and protect their home form burglars. I think the word militia was meant in a different context 200 years ago and could be used to describe a group of organized citizenry with guns just as it could describe a standing army.

Originally posted by James Madison in Federalist No.46
Let a regular army, fully equal to the resources of the country, be formed; and let it be entirely at the devotion of the federal government; still it would not be going too far to say, that the State governments, with the people on their side, would be able to repel the danger. The highest number to which, according to the best computation, a standing army can be carried in any country, does not exceed one hundredth of the whole number of souls; or one twenty-fifth part of the number able to bear arms. This proportion would not yield, in the United States, an army of more than twenty-five or thirty thousand men. To these would be opposed a militia amounting to near half a million of citizens with arms in their hands, officered by men chosen from among themselves, fighting for their common liberties, and united and conducted by governments possessing their affections and confidence. It may well be doubted, whether a militia thus circumstanced could ever be conquered by such a proportion of regular troops.

mimartin
04-20-2007, 03:50 PM
I too own guns. I hunt, but tend to carry a camera with me now days more than a gun. I also have a license to carry a concealed weapon, although I never do. I do not believe that my right to own a gun is guaranteed within the 2nd Amendment.

I agree with the gun lobby that a gun are a tool nothing more and is only as dangerous as the person using it. That said Iím for way stricter gun control and laws than what are on the books today.

To purchase any fire arm should require a license. In order to obtain the license you would have to pass a background check for criminal activity as well a psychological test. I also believe there should not be a time limit to the search. Just because the local Sheriff is busy should not mean you get your license after 30 days because he did have the back ground check done on time. What should be the criteria, I donít know, but Iíd rather our elected officials made the error of being to strict than not strict enough.

Now that people have been trained Iíd stiffen the penalties for gun related crimes. Including the carrying of fire arms without a license and penalize states for issuing hunting licenses without verifying that the person also had a fire arms licenses.

I was brought up in a household where guns were not locked up or secured in any way. Family member just made it clear I was not to touch them. For the most part I didnít, but once at the urging of another friend I did. Nothing happen, but today all my weapons are stored locked up or with trigger guards. The ammo is hidden in a fire proof box far from the guns location. I have a problem with people that donít do ever thing possible to keep their weapons out of the hands of children or the unqualified. Hopefully fully educating people to gun safety would prevent accidental loss of life, but if not there should be penalties for allowing your weapon to fall into innocent hands.

I do not see the point of HP Caps Magazine at all. If youíre that bad of a shot find another hobby. I believe it should be illegal to buy, sell or own any Magazine that hold over 9 shots.

This is all pointless anyways; the gun lobby will never allow any type of gun control. They have all their members so brained washed that it is all or nothing. They believe if they allow compromise at all the next thing you know big brother will be taking all your guns. In the mean time innocent people die while they argue about whoís at fault.

How sad. As I wrote that a gun man is at Johnson Space Center in Clear Lake Texas. I have a friend that works there, but luckily for him he is at the Dentist.

tk102
04-20-2007, 04:36 PM
How sad. As I wrote that a gun man is at Johnson Space Center in Clear Lake Texas. I have a friend that works there, but luckily for him he is at the Dentist. :eyeraise: :disaprove

Bimmerman
04-20-2007, 06:08 PM
But...the M1 Carbine doesn't even look like an assault weapon, at least in my opinion. It's a bloody semi-automatic. That is pretty stupid indeed. If we judged every gun by its looks, everything would be an assault weapon...

That's precisely my point: most of the guns banned were not assault weapons, they only looked like them, or were just semi-auto, and thus the law did nothing.


As for the well organized militia bit of the 2nd amendment, under some section of the United States Code(I'll find it and then post it) every male over the age of 17 is a member of the US militia. Ironically, you can't buy a gun unless you're 18 or over, 21 for a handgun.

EDIT: Found it.


TITLE 10 > Subtitle A > PART I > CHAPTER 13 > ß 311

ß 311. Militia: composition and classes

(a) The militia of the United States consists of all able-bodied males at least 17 years of age and, except as provided in section 313 of title 32, under 45 years of age who are, or who have made a declaration of intention to become, citizens of the United States and of female citizens of the United States who are members of the National Guard.

(b) The classes of the militia areó
(1) the organized militia, which consists of the National Guard and the Naval Militia; and
(2) the unorganized militia, which consists of the members of the militia who are not members of the National Guard or the Naval Militia.


Thus, even if you don't know it, if you are a male american 17 or older, or a female in the National Guard, you're in either the organized or unorganized militia, and have the right to bear arms.


As for the relevance of hunting, I tried hunting for a year, both with shotguns and rifles(birds/elk) and decided it's just not for me. I have way more fun at the trap range or competing against friends for who is most accurate at 200 yards than hunting, so if hunting were outlawed, I wouldn't be too upset. Best venison I ever had was when a deer committed hari-kari on a window in my house anyway.


How sad. As I wrote that a gun man is at Johnson Space Center in Clear Lake Texas. I have a friend that works there, but luckily for him he is at the Dentist.

I just saw your post. I'm glad your friend's alright. My condolences to any victims.

The Source
04-21-2007, 08:46 PM
I am going to put this on the table:

When it comes to what has happened in Virgina Tech, I personally believe that it has nothing to do with 'gun control'. As I have studied through psychology, the individual is in charge of their own actions. When so many people get killed in this fashion, outsiders find it easy to blame it on 'gun control'. I don't understand why society doesn't blame the killer anymore.

Every action is a method of communication. Deep inside this killer's mind was something wrong. We can speculate what it could have been, but we didn't live the course of his life. Something external or internal had been linguring in his mind, and the pressure made him snap. Can we forsee these events? Yes. If we are able to track this individual's life from beginning to end, I am willing to bet that a series of events occured in which had built up over time.

'Gun Control' is not the answer. Psychological screening is not the answer. If the school or his parent paid attention to this kid's essays and actions, they could have stopped this chaos from occuring at the beginning.

As a student of psychology, I know for a fact that this could have been prevented. Either the school or parents should have forseen his mental breakdown.

Dagobahn Eagle
04-21-2007, 10:37 PM
Good post. However, a few things:
I don't understand why society doesn't blame the killer anymore.The forum at Subsim.com, for one, has a thread titled 'Cut through the BS', made by a person who said society didn't blame the shooter enough. He claimed it was 'impossible to understand insanity' (of course an ignorant statement), and said that any attempt to explain why he did it was an exoneration of his actions.

Every action is a method of communication.Pardon me, but I could never understand this one.

If the school or his parent paid attention to this kid's essays and actions, they could have stopped this chaos from occuring at the beginning.They did pay attention, and he was admitted to outpatient psychiatric treatment for 'being a threat to himself or others' (paraphrased). Obviously they either did not find homicidal thoughts in him at the time, or they deemed the thoughts 'cured' or not strong enough to warrant further hospitalization. This was in 2005, two years ago.

Obviously, Cho was not a sane person. But after a guy goes through treatment and is found sane, he can't be locked up, even though he writes very violent plays and otherwise acts frighteningly. It'd be like jailing an exonerated suspect of a crime.

Jae Onasi
04-22-2007, 02:40 AM
How sad. As I wrote that a gun man is at Johnson Space Center in Clear Lake Texas. I have a friend that works there, but luckily for him he is at the Dentist.

I have a good friend who works there, too. I felt bad for the man who was killed, but I was very relieved to see it wasn't my friend.

Nancy Allen``
04-22-2007, 06:19 PM
I've been wanting to discuss this for a while now but haven't actually gotten around to doing it. The two issues that always arise with shootings such as this, definetly the school shootings such as last week's tragedy as well as Columbine, Paducha, ect is the control of weapons particularly those used in these incidents and whether film and video games have an influence. Now the issue of gun control, on the one hand all the military rifles, all the high powered type of stuff you can get, people don't need this sort of thing. What legal reason can the same rifles and sub machine guns used by people such as SWAT teams, special forces, the people who are trained specifically to kill and to use force to enforce the law, what legal reason can people outside those organisations have for owning or wanting to own such a weapon? On the other hand the ideas surrounding gun control is all wrong. I find it ironic that if someone else had a gun then they could have stopped Seung-Hui Cho before it got anywhere near where it did, but outside of that people look at something like the Port Arthur massecre that occured eleven years ago and they banned automatic rifles, in light of the Virginia Tech shooting they want to ban Glock handguns because that was the weapon used. You don't need a Styer AUG or 18 autofire to commit a shooting, you can achieve the same result with a revolver or a bolt action rifle or a single shot Derringer you have to reload after each shot. Much of the reason for this comes from the panic people have in these situations, in just about every instance like this people have been trained almost too well to be completely scarred and they, rightfully I might add react with panic. The issue lies in how easy it is to obtain guns and this is a war on two or three fronts. One, there is the right to bear arms and it is a right that should stand, the issue lies in whether or not specific weapons should be made avalible. Now this might sound contradictory to the notion that gun control is wrong by banning certain weapons, but the issue with that is the belief that if weapon X was banned then the problem would go away. The larger issue is how avalible guns are. Rather than allow everyone to have guns as has been proposed if guns were a lot harder to access then there wouldn't be the problems we face with guns. Now this leads to the second point in restricted guns finding their way into the hands of criminals. The black market is rife with the types of weapons people simply shouldn't have and is an issue that must be addressed. The third point lies in whether or not certain people should be allowed to have guns. Seung-Hui Cho appeared normal by all accounts but the signs were there. The disturbing writing, setting fire to his dorm, posing like the characters in violent films, which I'll get to in a minute. These type of things are what's known as having form, in that it delves into the type of character these people are. Someone like Seung-Hui Cho could easily commit the crimes given his mental state. The same goes for other mentally ill people, such as how dangerous it would be for someone who is suffering from depression, or maybe show leniancy and push the case to them attempting suicide, to own a gun. In this case, as well as the cases of incidents like Columbine and Paducha the people felt they had to take revenge for the torments they suffered, and very much power grows from the barrel of a gun. Not only would these incidents have been averted if people like the Trenchcoat Mafia hadn't been able to get their hands on guns as I said but a fourth point is to look at the causes of these rampages. Why did Seung-Hui Cho kill all these people before killing himself? Because he thought he was bullied and singled out. Why did Columbine happen? Because the perpetrators blamed others, they set out to right the wrongs they felt they suffered. It's no excuse, less than no excuse in the case of Columbine as going by their videos they wanted to do it because, well, because they could, because they thought it would be great fun to kill as many people as they could. People like that deserve a bullet, but the point I'm making here is that these people in their minds were victimised, and they sought to take matters into their own hands. It's a desire of everyone who's suffered bullying at school, and while killing is never a valid excuse one of the triggers we see from these school shootings is bullying. Cut this cancer out and you will go a long way to stopping the problem.

Now for the other issue that always comes up with these incidents, whether film and video games have an influence. I know of at least two serious investigations of this concerning video games. The first involved whether games made you dessensitised to violence and taught you skills nessecary to kill. I would say yes on both counts, the same as something like a driving game can teach you to drive. Games for the most part are pretty basic, with the possible exception of flight simulators. Racing games for example don't usually have how much you push the accelerator and brake, or something like basketball where you can't roll the ball with your fingers so that it has the right direction of spin to help the shot. The concern of how much games may teach arised in the Rainbow Six games, where with the first one it was about giving the full complete impact of elite counterterrorism (planning, one shot kills, proper tactics, ect) but it left out things (far more operatives are used, helicopter support) though you learn a lot in the game or even seeing a real team go through a real kill house. When making Raven Shield the point was raised on whether the games could teach terrorists anything. The defense was that all the things in the games are really common sense and they worked to leave out anything sensitive. The same arguement have been used in books where tactical procedures are altered, but I maintain people can get an idea of how people would act in those situations, an idea of what something might do, ect. The other test was how games affect our behaviour. A group of children played kiddy games and we saw how they played afterwards, it was all very calm, civil, and then adult games, shooting games, and they were much more aggressive. This suggests that violent games can make us violent. It could also from my point of view be from the anticipation of playing these games, that the children are excited about something they usually don't get to do. Now pretty much the same line of thought can be applied to films. I would say that films and video games can be influential, they can give ideas, they can even be educational in a negative way. However I would argue that the problem lies in those who haven't the self control to not commit these acts and those who cannot see what is right and what is wrong.

The Source
04-22-2007, 09:42 PM
Every action is a method of communication.


Pardon me, but I could never understand this one.

People go into a situation with the experience of previous events (lifespace). If an individual can only get the attention of others through head banging, they will continuously bang their head for attention. Once people stop reacting to the head banging, they will find another 'more severe' way to get your attention. Since they learned how to communicate with others in a certain manner, they will use the same method regardless about how barbaric it may seem. Maybe mom or dad ignored them, and the only way to get their attention is through harsh methods.

Examples:
When a child screams in another room, they are trying to tell mom or dad something is wrong or how they feel about a situation.

Why? That is how they learned to get the attention of others. When it comes to Cho, his record speaks for its self. If you make a list (in sequential order) of all the things he has done, you will notice a change in severity. Since no one was responding to a low level severity, he found a more excessive way to communicate his emotions. Some how an specific event (past event) conditioned how he responded to external stress.

igyman
04-23-2007, 09:48 AM
Hmmm. A lot of good and smart things have already been said and I agree with almost all of them. Guns shouldn't be banned, but the control of who they are sold to should be very very seriousl understood and enforced. Only persons with the appropriate permits should be allowed to own semi-automatic, or automatic rifles and in order to acquire such a permit a person needs to be-- what? Carefully checked out. Meaning background, mental health, family situation, etc.
Now, another very important part, in my opinion, in reducing the amount of death by guns is education. We can't do much for the adults, most of them (or should I say us) are too stubborn to change their minds, but we can educate children. I believe that with appropriate occasional education classes in schools, teenagers can learn the dangers of guns and it may significantly reduce their desire to get one, or to get involved with street gangs.
When it comes to illegal gun traders, that's up to the police. They need to increase their efforts in reducing the black market to an acceptable minimum.

Bimmerman
04-23-2007, 05:45 PM
Now the issue of gun control, on the one hand all the military rifles, all the high powered type of stuff you can get, people don't need this sort of thing. What legal reason can the same rifles and sub machine guns used by people such as SWAT teams, special forces, the people who are trained specifically to kill and to use force to enforce the law, what legal reason can people outside those organisations have for owning or wanting to own such a weapon?

By "high powered," what do you mean exactly? I follow the rest of your argument, and agree with most of it, but I'm confused by what you mean by this part.

Only persons with the appropriate permits should be allowed to own semi-automatic, or automatic rifles

Why should people need a permit for a semi automatic gun? Fully automatic guns are very tightly federally controlled, and require a lengthy registration and application process to get a permit for a single specific gun.

Hunting, target shooting competitions, skeet shooting, and self defense are all valid uses of semi automatics, why should those be as tightly controled as automatics? Semi and fully automatics are designed entirely differently, and it is a non-trivial matter to convery a semi to a fully, not to mention a federal offense.

Now, another very important part, in my opinion, in reducing the amount of death by guns is education. We can't do much for the adults, most of them (or should I say us) are too stubborn to change their minds, but we can educate children. I believe that with appropriate occasional education classes in schools, teenagers can learn the dangers of guns and it may significantly reduce their desire to get one, or to get involved with street gangs.

I agree with you on some parts. More education is a good thing, for everyone and for gun owners. For the latter, there are plenty of gun education classes- the NRA offers good gun safety classes. Boy Scouts/Venturers do as well- most of the shooting sports merit badges center on safety rather than any skill with a gun. I don't know about Girl Scouts. A class in school though...? Why? You can get all the important points in a couple days, while holding school assemblies on the subject just gives kids an opportunity to get an early lunch. From what I recall from freshman health class, we talked about the dangers of guns for a day.

However, is the purpose your proposed gun education classes to reduce the student's desire to get one or to teach gun safety? Because if it's the former, look at what has happened with "abstinence only" sex education- it's done nothing to curb teenagers' inherent horniness but instead doesn't teach them how to have safe sex. Telling a teenager something is bad and dangerous just make them want it more, a la pot, alcohol, sex, driving(more training should be mandatory like in germany to get a license...but i digress). Teaching kids how to be safe with guns is far more important and likely of success than slapping their wrists and saying "No no, Bad Newbie. Guns are bad. Stay away."

DreadWizardDM
04-23-2007, 10:52 PM
Im going to try and keep my reply short and direct without fancy words.

1. People who are convicted felons should NOT be allowed to own or carry a firearm.
2. In order to purchase a firearm someone should have to pass a background check, just a simple check of their identification and to see if the person is who they claim to be and if they are a felon.
3. A non citizen or someone on a green card should NOT be allowed to own or carry a gun.


As far as psychologists are concerned I think half of them do not know what they are talking about and tend to jump to their own perspective conclusions. Oh no... this kid is dressed goth he needs help for trauma! PFFT!!... give me a break! I do not believe the way a person dresses should be a major indicator of their personality, look at the Enron executives for an example, guys wearing expensive suits stealing billions (felons).

I do actually believe that poverty does have a direct relationship with crime rate, we only need to look at the statistics for that. As far as trying to deterimin who a mad dog killer is and who is not, well thats just impossible. For all anyone knows their neighbor, teacher, shrink or local sheriff could have commited a murder and not know about it.

Now for some waaaay out in left field stuff.
1. If the penalty for murder was literally being thrown into a pit of hungry lions and broadcast live on TV do you think the muder rate would drop?? HELL YEAH IT WOULD! Because just the thought of being "fed to the lions" would more than likely creep into someones mind before they pulled a trigger.

tk102
04-23-2007, 11:51 PM
They did pay attention, and he was admitted to outpatient psychiatric treatment for 'being a threat to himself or others' (paraphrased). Obviously they either did not find homicidal thoughts in him at the time, or they deemed the thoughts 'cured' or not strong enough to warrant further hospitalization. This was in 2005, two years ago.
The sad part about this is that his treatment did not get noted in his profile check at the time he purchased his guns. Virginia state law didn't add flag Cho because he wasn't "formally committed" by the judge who at the time said he "presents an imminent danger to himself as a result of mental illness". The FBI's Criminal Justice Information Services has the a page describing then National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS) (http://www.fbi.gov/hq/cjisd/nics.htm) and states:
The federally prohibitive criteria outlining the reasons an individual may be precluded from the transfer/possession of a firearm or firearm-related permit, pursuant to Title 18 U.S.C., ßß 922 (g) and (n), are as follows:
...
A person adjudicated mental defective or involuntarily committed to a mental institution or incompetent to handle own affairs, including dispositions to criminal charges pertaining to found not guilty by reason of insanity or found incompetent to stand trial.

Pete Williams stated on Meet the Press (http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/18230965/page/6/) (April 22): Thereís ample reason to think, actually, that the existing federal law did clearly sweep up this gun purchase. But the Virginia state law was not in conformance with the federal law. Virginiaís law didnít capture sufficient numbers of people who were mentally unqualified to own a gun. The sobering thing is, as defective as the Virginia system is, itís considered the best in the country among the states in terms of looking at mental health records.
It is likely that lawmakers will address these clauses and their implementations from state to state. Closing loopholes in existing laws is always easier than implementing new ones.

****

Departing from the issues of gun control, I believe the universities can make simple changes to the way they protect students. For instance, their email notification systems could easily be updated to send text messages to students phones at little or no cost just by changing the contact address. Teachers need to have a well-defined process to alert administration to problem ... The English professor who referred him for counseling called him the most disturbed student she had encountered in two decades of teaching...On at least two separate occasions [English professors and students] reached out to university officials, telling them as recently as this September that Mr. Cho was trouble. They made little headway, however, and no action was taken by school administrators in response to their concerns.
And finally how about some locks on all the classroom doors?!?

Nancy Allen``
04-24-2007, 06:18 PM
High powered rifles? The ones the military uses is a great place to start. The M15, M4, M14, FA-MAS, Styer AUG and any member of the Kalashnikov range would certainly fall under the catagory. A fully automatic, long range assault rifle that can be fitted with a larger magazine, what legitimate reason would someone have for owning such a weapon? I know many such rifles have been banned and rightfully so. In my mind though one of the most dangerous weapons you can get isn't a rifle, but the Hecklor & Koch MP5 SDS. Not only was it designed for inside use (taking away the clumsiness and size of a rifle) it has an integrated silencer which makes it much quieter than even those fitted with a supressor, and it can be fitted with a scope, large magazine and other options such as a laser sight.

Bimmerman
04-24-2007, 06:33 PM
High powered rifles? The ones the military uses is a great place to start. The M15, M4, M14, FA-MAS, Styer AUG and any member of the Kalashnikov range would certainly fall under the catagory. A fully automatic, long range assault rifle that can be fitted with a larger magazine, what legitimate reason would someone have for owning such a weapon? I know many such rifles have been banned and rightfully so. In my mind though one of the most dangerous weapons you can get isn't a rifle, but the Hecklor & Koch MP5 SDS. Not only was it designed for inside use (taking away the clumsiness and size of a rifle) it has an integrated silencer which makes it much quieter than even those fitted with a supressor, and it can be fitted with a scope, large magazine and other options such as a laser sight.

All of the guns you mentioned are illegal for civilian use, unless you have a permit for an automatic or current military weapon, which is an expensive and time consuming process. The MP5 has no real use except for law enforcement/military, and the legal hurdles involved in acquiring one as a civilian indicate that fact.

Banning high powered rifles is pointless and unnecessary, however, because you cannot hunt without one. By high powered I mean muzzle velocity and stopping power. Every hunting rifle is more powerful than the aforementioned military weapons, as are many target rifles used in marksmanship competitions. I think by high powered you mean fully automatic military and military-knock off weapons, which are illegal already, unless I'm completely mistaken as to what you mean.

I agree with you that there's no reason to have one of the guns you quoted, but the same is true for a Ferrari- there's no justifiable reason to have one, as it's impractical and expensive to own(like an automatic rifle), but people crave them anyway. Unless you are a member of the military or law enforcement, you cannot obtain a military-type weapon easily or legally.

Nancy Allen``
04-24-2007, 06:42 PM
True, some of the motor vehicles on the market don't make sense in that they are designed to go much faster than the legal speed limit. However the diffirence lies in the purpose of a vehicle and the purpose of a firearm.

You'll also find that any type of hunting rifle would be a single shot bolt action or something that otherwise isn't designed to shred human flesh. I'm not an expert but with hunting rifles in particular whoever shot an animal with it would want it pretty much intact. You opened up on one with an M16 and the bullets would tear it apart. Speaking of bullets it's a good idea to see what type of bullets it uses. The .223 rifles use is bad enough but Black Talon, Hydra Shock, both illegal thankfully, you won't be getting a trophy if you put an animal down with something like that.

Bimmerman
04-24-2007, 08:58 PM
My hunting rifle's a semi auto 30-06. Bolt action rifles and semis are just as common for hunting. An M16 is selective fire, meaning the user can choose between semi auto and fully auto. Only a complete moron would use an M16 on fully auto to go hunting.

Speaking of bullets, by the Geneva Convention, military bullets must be jacketed to prevent them from expanding too much while going through the body. The Black Talon round, designed for self defense, was never created in a round that would fit any hunting rifle, negating that argument entirely. The Hydra Shok round, marketed by the manufacturer for law enforcement, was also a handgun-only round. Neither are illegal as far as I can find out, but the Black Talon has been discontinued while the Hydra Shok is law enforcement primarily, and outrageously expensive for civilians, if available at all.

igyman
04-25-2007, 01:33 PM
Why should people need a permit for a semi automatic gun?
I think people should have permits for any type of guns - handguns and rifles. Now, I'm just saying that when it comes to buying a rifle, the purchaser's background should be very carefully checked and, of course, he should have the appropriate permits.

Now, why do I think permits are needed? Because they can reduce the possibility of a murderous psycho buying a rifle legitimately. When it comes to illegal gun sales, like I said, that's something the police should put in some extra effort to reduce.

However, is the purpose your proposed gun education classes to reduce the student's desire to get one or to teach gun safety?
Both. I believe that through teaching teenagers about the dangers of guns and instructing them on gun safety, they can reduce their desire to get a gun. I'm not saying that you should simply slap them on the wrists and say ''Guns are bad, stay away from them'', I'm saying that you should explain to them why are guns dangerous and why everyone shouldn't own a gun.