Why the need for guns?

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Hya Eric, I’m from Canada, eastern portion called the Maritimes, and when reading posts concerning guns, open carry, etc, I have to admit it’s almost foreign to me that it’s an issue. The general consensus I get is that a lot of Americans are pissed that they cannot carry a gun everywhere, and that defending yourself means you must have that right. In that sense, I should say I agree 100%…if it’s necessary.

Where I’m being lost is this: Is American life so violent and paranoid that one MUST carry a gun everywhere?

I don’t mean this as an insult, really, but I’m trying to picture the average day where one feels the NEED to carry a gun into a coffee shop or a car parts store or just on the street because they are expecting to be robbed or mugged or worse. I’m not necessarily saying give up the guns, but I’m wondering about the mindset that assumes before you leave the house that you will probably be fearing for your life, and that you feel the requirement to have deadly force available at all times just in case. This reminds me of the mentality in a war-torn civil war country…is it really that bad in America ? Are people really being robbed and beaten so often that DAILY ARMING OF SELF no matter where you go or what you do becomes as automatic as putting on your shoes? If the average CITIZEN feels this way, then I can kind of see why the average COP is such a violent thug, where they have the same mentality but now has the entire government backing up his paranoia.

To me, this is a scary mentality in general for a society to have if it’s true, as it makes trust and rational thinking impossible, but if it’s not REALLY that bad there, then why is it such a big deal when someone asks to leave a gun at the counter before going into a coffee shop for example? Judging by what I read, many people can’t stand the idea that they might be parted with their gun for even a few minutes…meaning they are either fully realistically expecting to shoot someone, or they are fully expecting to BE shot. Now take this person and tell them to relax in a social setting and it’s just simply not possible. They’d be like the bouncer at a bar…aloof and watching for trouble that they can react to rather than just enjoying themselves.

As you post a lot on “not giving up your guns even temporarily for any reason”, I’m curious to your opinion on this!

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84 COMMENTS

  1. People who have no experience with guns fear them due to the incessant propaganda of the anti-gun lobby which ignores inconvenient statistics. I recommend the following video by a contemporary philosopher who’s primary goal is spreading the message of non-violent parenting:

    Gun Control: History, Philosophy and Ethics – Stefan Molyneux

  2. Well James, let’s talk.

    …as it only increases the chances the very gun you own may, either by your own accident or through theft, contribute to your own injury.

    Ah–the tired trope, “the robber will just use your gun against you!”
    Here’s a quick summary article describing the statistics; vastly more crimes are prevented by guns, than are committed with them.

    By the way–if you can find a reported instance of this, I’ll be glad to hear. If you can find statistics, I’ll be impressed. It’s rare to the point of insignificance.

    my position is that owning guns may actually be a little self-defeating as a safety measure and I would never own one

    Well, then, James, your position would be wrong–because it’s not based on statistical fact–guns are used to prevent crime between 5 and 20 times as often as they are used in the commission of crime.

    Crime is quite rare, actually; but just because it hasn’t happened to you, yet, doesn’t mean it won’t. Will your assailant be assuaged, or even charmed, by your meekness and defenselessness? No, he won’t. He’ll beat and rob you exactly as he intended, perhaps more so, and if he has time and inclination, he’ll violate your wife, too. Your society is too peaceful to even contemplate such an awful thing? How sure are you of that?

    Please try this: instead of pontificating how little you want/need guns, go to a range and shoot one with a friend willing to help you.

    Find out what these scary objects are; find out for yourself that they are tools, no different than a chainsaw–dangerous if misused, but indispensable in trained hands for their given purpose.

  3. Just thought I would leave my thoughts as another Canadian….

    Personally, I do find the American Gun culture to be a little paranoid. I am 37 years old and I have never ever needed a gun, nor found a myself in a situation where having gun would have improved my situation. I also don’t think that owning a gun increases personal safety, as it only increases the chances the very gun you own may, either by your own accident or through theft, contribute to your own injury.

    However, I recently changed my views on account of the recent Colorado shooting, which seemed to me to be very suspect. I believe it may have been a counter intelligence move by the US Gov to push for gun limitations – with everything going down the tubes in the States and social unrest a possibility, the government doesn’t lie the idea if dissatisfied and armed citizens.

    In short, my position is that owning guns may actually be a little self-defeating as a safety measure and I would never own one. However, I fully support the right of other people to won them. While I think it may make the individual unsafe I support their rights to do so.

    • Hi James,

      Good to have you with us – and glad to hear you’re coming around on this issue!

      It’s not about “need” – which is subjective, in any case. Your notion of “need” may be entirely different from mine – and vice versa.

      I take the position that police cannot be everywhere – and more, that at a fundamental level I am most responsible for my own physical safety and that of my family. Against a physically superior (or armed) opponent, a gun is the great equalizer – perhaps the only thing that may save your life.

      You write:

      “I am 37 years old and I have never ever needed a gun, nor found a myself in a situation where having gun would have improved my situation.”

      That is a blessing. I hope you never do find yourself in such a situation. But what if you do? The saying, “when seconds count, police are only minutes away” is pretty persuasive to me.

      You write:

      “I also don’t think that owning a gun increases personal safety, as it only increases the chances the very gun you own may, either by your own accident or through theft, contribute to your own injury. ”

      That’s at best an opinion. Not a factual critique. One might say the same things – just as inaccurately – about a table saw. Or a car.

    • “I am 37 years old and I have never ever needed a gun, nor found a myself in a situation where having gun would have improved my situation.”

      Hm, I’m thinking of the phrases: sheltered life, danger-free, and low-risk.
      I’m guessing you’re not a farmer, nor live in a large metro area with little income, or even a middle class worker working late in a crime ridden business district. Ect…

      I’ve also heard People say something similar about water and spare tires before they headed across a desert or down a gravel road. YMMV I suppose.

      “my position is that owning guns may actually be a little self-defeating as a safety measure”

      Hm, I’m also thinking: “I wonder why bath tubs are still legal?” and, “How many People wear helmets while they shower? I mean, the odds are pretty high – death or injury could occur – and the kitchen sink works…”
      James, do you wear a helmet while showering or taking a bath? Just kidding. Who does that?
      Using the kitchen sink is fairly common though.

      James wrote, “However, I fully support the right of other people to won them.”

      That was good to see anyway. Keep thinking on it. Maybe check out a book by John Lott for some stats, or watch Chuck Woolery’s 2nd Amendment video. It’s up to you.

    • What is crime? Why does it happen? Because someone finds it easier to live as a parasite by taking from others than being productive.

      When we see the root cause of crime, that is most crime, where people make it a way of life, not some act of desperation, it’s about effort, risk, and reward. So how do we deal with crime? We should address these three aspects.

      Guns increase risk, which makes crime less likely. How do they do this? By the criminal never knowing who has one. It’s not that you or I or anyone owns/carries a gun. It’s the probability that any random stranger might. This is why where guns are illegal there is more crime. It’s statistically safe for the criminal. It’s the thought there might be a gun that is more important than the gun itself.

      And example of destroying reward is to not have arbitrary things illegal, like some drugs are. Anything with a market that is outside the law becomes infested with criminals who use violence to have market share.

      Effort, if something takes more effort than working for a living per unit of reward, then people will work for a living.

      It’s really very simple but people get caught up in emotions on single issues and lose sight of the basic simplicity.

  4. Hello Dom,
    I am also from Maritime Canada and you have some good questions. Please read the “Report on Self Defense in Canada” by Gary Mauser, PhD. It is Reprinted from Journal of Criminal Justice, Vol 24, No 5, pp 393-406, Copyright (1996). It will be an eye opener. It outlines just how often Canadians use firearms to prevent harm to themselves from bad guys and animals.

    On a personal note, I don’t know anyone who DOESN’T own a gun. Long guns (rifles, shotguns) in most cases. I think if you ask your father/uncles/grandfathers/older friends and neighbours you’ll find that most have a well oiled .22, .303, and .410 in the closet. We don’t trot them out everyday but you be surprised how quick they appear should the occasion arise.

    A few examples: a huge whitetail buck grazed his way onto my Grandfather’s front lawn one morning. He downed it with one shotgun slug while standing in his sock feet in the doorway.

    I was helping a neighbour with a downed cow and told him we would need to put her down. In a heartbeat he appeared with a loaded rifle. I don’t know where it was or how he got it loaded so fast but I wouldn’t want to find out by kicking down his door.

    When a distant neighbour died, guess what his sons found in a cardboard box on TOP OF HIS FRIDGE? A loaded revolver. He was an upstanding, law abiding citizen. The handgun was his fathers and he must have held on to it “just in case”.

    My point is this: an armed society is a polite society. Nobody breaks into my house because they assume there is a firearm ready to hand. I assume the same of them.

    • You see FB, the corruption runs from the statehouse down to the courthouse. Sociopaths, evil people, gravitate to positions of authority; regardless of the time frame or geographic location. And because they have no moral compunction against doing anything it takes to get what they want, it’s hard for people like you and I to even comprehend them, much less compete against them. We can rest assured that Harper will be well rewarded for selling out Nexen to the Chinese. Chinese contractors have been hired to build bridges in California. You can bet someone’s palms are getting greased for that. The Chinese bribed the Afghani Minister of Mines for control of some of their copper fields. The Chinese effectively control the Panama Canal (and have for some time). This would not be the case if there weren’t corrupt officials salivating over the unrighteous mammon that will flow to them from each one of these sell-outs.

      Which brings us back around to guns, crime and cops: If our laws were in fact geared toward protecting life, limb and property of the general public, freely carrying weapons and threatening or shooting a violent assailant would be highly regarded by the press, our “public servants” and our peers. Instead we are being taught to bow down and submit to bullies in our schools, in mass media and by the police themselves. For instance, don’t resist if being raped, it will only make it worse. If you’re being robbed, give the criminal what he wants and maybe he’ll go away. Don’t fight back…ever. Just do what the cops tell you and you’ll be alright. And if it’s a cop assaulting or raping you, especially don’t fight back then. My dad told me years ago that cops and criminals are heads and tales on the same coin: it doesn’t take much for them to flip. Now I see what he meant.

      In your own life you saw the worst of it firsthand. Do you think your ex became an abusive sadist because he was a cop? Or is it more likely that he became a cop so he could be an abusive sadist with impunity? It appears the people we ‘supposedly’ elect to serve us and look out for our interests appoint evil people to key positions within the bureaucracy. The reason is each kind shall seek its own. Once they are “in”, they start legislating, regulating and litigating to protect themselves from the public. They are parasites and we are the host. These in turn hire people just like them or sycophants that will go along with them to enforce their arbitrary laws, regulations and edicts.

      A small percentage (about 6%) of the populace is truly evil. They seek out and work with their own kind, even on the playground. Once they get into positions of authority (which is how they can get away with “being themselves”) they surround themselves with either their own kind or members of the roughly 27% that will go along with them for financial rewards and a share of the power (i.e. cops, health inspectors, building inspectors, tax collectors, etc.). They understand that once enough of us realize what’s going on, we will stick a cigarette on their backs like leeches, pull them off and flush them down the stool; hence their efforts to insulate and protect themselves from the general public. One of the best ways they’ve found to do this is by keeping the rest of us intimidated and afraid. Hence their strong desire to take our guns away and let men like your ex-husband run roughshod over us at will.

      Had you had a handgun my dear, the outcome against your ex-husband’s abuse may have been remarkably different (in fact had he believed you would shoot him for hurting you, he mightn’t have done it all). Regardless, you would not only have been well within your rights to defend yourself, but would have had the means to do so effectively. You’d have also been the only one telling the story. Plus you’d have done a service for who knows how many other people he has most probably intimidated and abused since then. Here again is another valid reason for private and un-infringed firearms ownership. It’s really something to think about, isn’t it?

      • Oh, the first words out of my mouth were “I wonder how much they paid him out for that?” Like the 4.5 million he will make in pensions is inadequate. Don’t even get me started on Harper…lol….If ever a man should have been impeached, well it’s him.

        ****In your own life you saw the worst of it firsthand. Do you think your ex became an abusive sadist because he was a cop? Or is it more likely that he became a cop so he could be an abusive sadist with impunity?

        You answered much of that question yourself with your following paragraph. A little of column A, a little of column B. Obviously, an abusive individual does not act that way in the beginning, they’d be dropped pretty quickly. He rarely talked about his family. After my daughter was born, there was an incident, I left and filed a report. Do I really need to tell you how far I got with it? Or any subsequent reports or calls to police I made. It was only after his own mother called me, suicidal because his father had broken her leg that I realized the type of environment he was raised in. And he did have a HUGE authority complex, he liked nothing better than interrogating a “perp”…When they got asps as weapons, he hoped he would have the chance to use it. Decide for yourself. I myself was raised in a loving home, we worked out our differences, and we’re all rather intelligent (I’m not tooting my own horn…most people ask that question…how can someone as smart as you be caught up in that?). I was completely ill-prepared for a person who just can’t fight fair, every argument was like being in an interrogation room. But I wasn’t submissive, that’s probably why it got so bad for me. And by then I knew I could not count on police help, and literally left in the middle of the night with my two children, he had expressed just taking his gun and shooting himself. He still blamed me for every miserable thing he’d done in his life, so I figured I’d probably get it first. Months before that, he kicked me from behind, catapulting me directly onto the cement on my head. I don’t know how long I was out for, but it took almost a year to recover. I used that year well…procuring other arrangements for my kids and I, renting a home and paying the mortgage at the same time. He was supposed to be deployed, would have come home to an empty house, but it was cancelled. The night I left, I went to his superior officer and told him finally that he was suicidal (I have suicide intervention training and three refreshers), we were safely hidden at a friend’s, and he was brought in and arrested. RCMP were involved, and honestly, they tried to help, but the military could not have the scandal of one of their own police (who already had a bad rap) abusing his wife. It didn’t matter, I worked at the emerg room on base, he was a cop, everyone knew us and news spread quickly throughout the military community. In Canada. To those stationed in Europe. To those stationed in the Middle East. My whole life was flayed open like a book for everyone to read and judge…and they do. So he did get off the charges, and tried to make my life miserable again…I have good friends. The kind of friends a person wants to have, and like I said, off to the bitter north he went. Women began calling me left, right and center…”how do I get away, what can I do, what can YOU do?”. I suppose with infamy comes some benefit, and I quickly realized that was the reason for it all…get them out. Get them to the services they need. Find safe houses. Advise. Counsel. Use my experiences for the greater good. A lot of service men were charged following news of my story, and those that WEREN’T police officers funnily enough did NOT get off on those charges. Felt good.

        Hmmmmm…had I had a handgun…You’ve made me think long and hard about that. I still would have done the same, because I believed the system would work for me and my children. I was wrong, but I wouldn’t change a thing…none of it…I’m away from it, my kids are away from it, he’s not seen them in six years and they have no desire to. He pays through the nose for those two children, he has to it’s garnished from his wage (it had to be, his philosophy was that if he couldn’t see them, he shouldn’t have to pay for them…Every once in a while I’ll get a hate filled call, or message, but it’s more like flicking a mosquito that won’t stop buzzing. The last time he called, although the messages were meant for me, unfortunately my children got them. I called the Justice Department who issued my payments, and that was the end of that :). It’s hard for women to leave, they literally are going to have their worst nightmares realized and the system does not work. You have to be smart. You have to be calm, and persistent, and in my case, public attention did eventually work in my favor. It was a lifetime ago, but ten years with him was simply torturous. You just learn to live with it when you can’t see any other way out. But proving him to be the blowhard he really was, essentially castrating him in front of his peers and superiors, and the public, casting light, making his life as miserable as he had made mine, putting all eyes on him…that’s something a handgun wouldn’t have helped with, and frankly, for me it’s better this way. Karma…with a little push…lol. Believe me, I had many people offer to “take care” of the problem for me, and earnestly too. But even if I was unaware of a friend’s actions, it would still have fallen on me…I had a plan, it was rough going, but it worked. My kids are outstanding individuals, compassionate, and gentler souls cannot be found. My daughter is an honors student in her first year of sciences in University, and my son is the top of his class, an A+ student. Neither have ever been in trouble. BECAUSE I got them out. BECAUSE I raised them right, on my own. Funnily enough, they both have serious opinions on police now. The last time their father left a hate filled message, my son told me “He’ll rot in a pit before I’ll ever talk to him”. He’s 12…what a great guy. He’s big, so he doesn’t get picked on, but if he did, good luck to the other kid…lol.

        I guess it boils down to your comfort level…a gun in my house then could have just as easily been used on me in my sleep. Six of one, half dozen of the other, in the end it made no difference. I’m not comfortable with guns. I can’t help it. I shot a rifle once with a friend who was hunting, when I was a teen. Shot at a can, backfire landed me square on my ass…lol. That was it for me.

        ****Which brings us back around to guns, crime and cops: If our laws were in fact geared toward protecting life, limb and property of the general public, freely carrying weapons and threatening or shooting a violent assailant would be highly regarded by the press, our “public servants” and our peers.

        It’s not geared toward that. Period. So what will change that, in your opinion? What can be done? I’m willing to storm Parliament as soon as the revolution begins…lol.

        • I have to tell you how I got him shipped off though, because the irony of this will NOT be lost on you…you’re going to have a laugh…

          They had to keep him the service since the charges were dropped, in his job….he fought hard to protect that job too, threatening litigation to almost everyone involved in his case, shooting his mouth off and such. So he stayed in, fair enough, and got to stay…there was nothing they could do, or so it would appear. His top superior officer checked in on me and the children, and apologized that it was out of his hands. I casually mentioned what a shame it would be if he couldn’t further his career due to all this with a promotion…knowing all the while that with a promotion would come a posting elsewhere…you see if there is no open position for a HIGHER ranking member in their current unit, they are given a post to a base that DOES have an opening for that rank. I knew his ego would be unable to say no, and there’s really not that much choice involved. I guess that gave the boss an idea…lol. There was an opening alright, and he managed to find one in a “not-so-optimal” area. I hear the weather is mild in the territory of Nunavut…LOL It’s rather isolated. So essentially, I solved my problem by “inadvertently” getting him promoted. What do you think of that now? Perfect, right?

  5. Boothe, yes I would agree. I remember having respect for the police too…not disdain. It’s hard to teach your kids to go to the police for help when you know the kind of help they might get. Historically, we have had fewer gun owners, but our police are being trained equally as you say.

    • I look upon law enforcers as a nuisance at best – a potential major problem for me at worst.

      Yet, I’m no criminal or ne’er do well. So why should I have this view? Simple: It’s because law enforcers enforce laws – and the laws they enforce are absurd, even evil.

      What sort of person lurks behind bushes, in the dead of night, waiting for someone to become exasperated with an endless (and pointless) red light… “run” the light… and then issue the poor bastard a $200 ticket? What sort of person says, “Buckle up” – as if he were my mom and I were 10 years old – and backs it up with a gun? What sort of person participates in the kicking down of someone’s door in the middle of the night – and the caging of that person (perhaps much worse) because that person was believed to be “in possession” of a…. plant.

      It’s insane.

      More accurately, it’s insane to feel anything other than revulsion around law enforcers.

      They’ve become pigs. Literally. The appellation fits.

      • I’m no criminal either, I don’t even speed. I drive like there’s a cop behind me at all times, keeps the skills up. And I agree, their efforts are wasted on silly things like a plant. Firstly, get rid of sanctions on that, and your police force won’t need as many to “enforce”. Add to that our prisons here, when built, sign contracts that they will house a minumum requirement of prisoners to make that prison viable. They’re just chomping at the bit now, aren’t they?

        • The irony is they seem not to appreciate that they have created a vast army of “hostiles” – people who (in a sane society) are normally the natural allies of peace officers… but the enemy of law enforcers.

  6. Sorry…bugging again. One final thought…can any of you in any way attribute the increasing police brutality to their fear and knowledge that it’s citizens are probably armed? I ask only because (and this could indeed be propeganda) any videos or shows I’ve watched show the officer pulling someone over, with their weapon already drawn, or tazer in hand, screaming “show your hands! Step out of the car!” Here, usually they pull you over, casually stroll to the car, stick their head in the window and ask for your license and registration. Go back to the car, run their searches, bring it back and issue a ticket. We don’t need to be handcuffed outside the vehicle while this is being done. Any officer could say they felt threatened and so shot or wounded…it’s still perception, and even in the absence of any real need to use weapons, would still get away with it because of who they are. My ex nearly killed me…spent one night in jail and had every shred of evidence I had thrown out. Didn’t matter that he was guilty and everyone knew it, he was free to try to torture me in my new life, and so he did. I just happen to be smarter than he was and his ass got posted to Iqaluit…nice and lonely and cold way up there, and out of my hair and that of my kids. Brains over brawn 🙂 And fun, oh, so so so much fun:)

    • Hi FB,

      No, actually – because people in America have historically had guns. What’s changed is the attitude of “law enforcers” toward ordinary citizens. T

      • Primarily that has been what’s changed…yes. I’m just trying also to figure out what the driving factors are in all these crazy changes, and had wondered if that might be one of them…thanks for your answer

        • Incidentally, I am really enjoying your page….I’m glad my brother showed it to me, and I hope you won’t mind my visiting. I promise I won’t weigh in on topics I know jack about 🙂

    • FB, Eric’s right. Guns are an excuse only. We have always had guns. What’s changed is we now live under a police state mindset that has air travelers standing naked (even if virtually) in front unsworn TSA goons (sworn officers could find themselves in court under Title 42 USC for civil rights violations) just get on an airplane. This is the same spirit that brought the good people of the USSR “internal passports” and required the Germans to present their papers at checkpoints, ad nauseam. I still remember when we had “peace officers” not “Law Enforcement Officers” and for the most part they were friendly and even helpful. There are a few left, but very few. That’s’ not the mindset currently being inculcated in our current L.E.O.s academy classes. They are being trained that we (the folks that pay them) are potentially dangerous terrorists and their safety is paramount. Interesting in light of our supposed system of “innocent until proven guilty,” “equal protection under the law” and enumerated rights wouldn’t you say?

  7. Firstly, let me thank you all for the compliments on my name…yeah, I like double entendres. I absolutely seek to know the truth, no question there. It has nothing to do with how safe I feel in the streets, I simply do, but of course no one is immune. And yes, as in Treyvon, we are exposed to the propeganda of newscasters and government, and the pursuit of the American dream. I’d like to think no one is looking down on me BECAUSE I don’t need a gun, you’re right, it’s easy to say living where I do. But make no mistake…for me, PM Harper does NOT speak for my values, or those of the general population. By cutting the essential services he has, and will continue to….and allowing big corporations to shunt environmental laws, our country is frankly being raped of our natural resources. I expect that will continue with this Canada-China uber secretive trade deal. I imagine by 2015, enough of an “underclass”, and people enraged by serious cuts to unemployment, government services designed to help our citizens, and “need” to supplement income through crime will likely increase. I have no faith in our government….or those that enforce some often ridiculous laws (simply because there are no serious ones to deal with). People get desperate…hell I get desperate, how in the world can we stop his insanity before Canada is sold entirely? Short of a revolution (won’t happen, many Canadians just blindly follow and take it up the bum), there is no choice. A gun is not going to protect me from my government. Or it’s officers. It’s strange for me, especially, since the government that I loathe still paid my bills while working for them (military, fraud investigations, RCMP). Many of you might think that makes me a hypocrite…but before you judge me, know that I TRIED to shed light on some difficult issues, but at the end of the day it came down to as a single mom of two, I can shut my mouth long enough to feed my babies. That in NO WAY restricts me from having very anti-government feelings. I saw corruption and flaws in the system DAILY. I am retired from the gov’t now, and so I get a pension…from the government. But at the end of the day, we’re just all cogs in the little wheel who sometimes have to put our feelings aside to make a decent living. So please, don’t mistake my lack of knowledge in your way of life for indifference, I absolutely want the facts, absolutely want the truth. Thing is, we’re never going to get it. We are powerless against the very government and police services and corruption. If they raised taxes to 50%, we’d bitch and complain, but most would shrug and say “oh well, I’ll bend over….at least it’s not 100%. Our government doesn’t give a crap what we think when they point their grubby little fingers to our new “budget cuts”. So in that essence, we’re really not that different. Stick it to the man, man! With the current state of affairs, and impunity for the real perpetrators of crime as listed above, yeah…we’re pissed to the max. But short of a complete revolution and government takeover, that’s not going to change. If I were to be pulled over on a remote road, and an officer thought he’d “have a little fun with me first”, what do you suppose would happen if I needed to use deadly force to save myself? Often, when I hear on your news channels of an officer being shot, my first thought is “what did he try to do?” Tazer first, questions later. The statistics you’ve provided are undeniable. But if the reason to carry is intense aggression, terror, fear, what makes us any better? I teach my son to not bully, or take any of it…do what you gotta do to save yourself. But I certainly would not condone him having ANY kind of weapon as an insurance policy. My bro, mamba, is rather deadly in a couple of martial arts, as is my Dad, ex-special ops. I could inflict a bit of damage myself if required. All either of them need are their bare hands to self defend. So that is a personal choice too, every bit as valid as the choice to bear arms. You’re not wrong, neither is he. Again, it’s a measurement of need. Hypothetical for you…if I told you I was moving to America, would your first suggestion be “get a gun and know how to use it?” That’s not a loaded (pun not intended, but clearly there) question, if the answer is yes, then it’s yes. If it’s no, then it’s no. THAT’s what I’m trying to understand. Again, YOU ALL may be excellent gun users, with the intent to protect only when necessary. But I have serious doubts that some people do use it as a means of intimidation, sense of control, a gun may be a tool as suggested, but it’s a hell of a powerful one. Many of my dearest friends have fought in Afghanistan, many outside the wire. THEY need guns. It’s assumed that it’s a requirement, because it is. Both our military and yours have one purpose…the freedom and safety of our respective countries, and in that manner, I think we make a pretty good team, a force to be reckoned with. I don’t submit…to ANYONE. I have a voice and a rather sharp tongue I make use of rather regularly…perhaps too much so…lol. Mike, I couldn’t agree more…we’re all about anti bullying awareness campaigns. So what. We’re all aware by now, who and what’s going to actually do something about the problem? We have gangs, sure, concentrated in some cities. There’s no reasoning with those people, so you’d have to do what you needed to to protect yourself. I’m not stupid enough to think we’re going to achieve world peace any time soon, certainly not in my lifetime. Certainly not with the fear and truth of war all around us. But how sad we fear the war at home more, daily, that people who should be on the same side instead of blowing each other away. MOT, you have clearly illustrated one of my points…define reasonable. Define it for the law enforcement officials, and define it for our citizens, the two couldn’t be more opposed. Also Mike, I both agree and disagree with regard to the insurance policy analogy, only in that it is law to insure your car in case of incident, even if it may never happen. You HAVE to have it. The right to bear arms is still a choice, albeit for you a necessary one. Our government does not let us drive a car without insurance, your government does not tell you that you HAVE to have that insurance policy by being a gun owner so it is still a choice. Again, it’s not for me to judge that choice, I don’t live where you do. I also don’t use guns for sport or recreation (although I admit I’d love to learn to shoot, despite the fact that I would probably never need to). I would be too afraid of having a gun in my house for many personal reasons, and I hope you respect that choice as I do yours. Meth, I can easily imagine your scenario reagrding gov’t at large, in fact I could prove it easily from the inside look I have had. I just am sad at the prospect of that carrying over to the people at large. They don’t care, and if they spent only a fraction of the ridiculous pensions of the upper echelon on education, poverty (which someone mentioned as a large reason for crime, it surely is) and services, I suspect those numbers would drop considerably. I see that for most of you, fear isn’t the driving factor in owning a gun, the right to is. Protection is. But I don’t think you have enough gun safety laws, neither do we. I keep making the analogy of driving, since around here that IS a big issue….we have a lot of moose and that IS a very serious threat to motorists, every year people are killed by them after hitting one. I’m just wondering how many of you have had to draw that weapon, use that insurance policy of gun ownership. Or have had one aimed at you. I haven’t…at least not yet…haha. Our societies are so similar in so many ways, and yet so different. Our cops are bumbling fools, but fortunately, so are most of our criminals (when I was in Nova Scotia, some idiot robbed the CIBC bank…and used his own vehicle as his getaway car…sheesh). Your cops are still bumbling fools, but if I gather correctly from your statements, most of the criminals aren’t, and so pose more of a threat. That’s just a crazy cocktail. I guess I just choose to place my devotion elsewhere, not to a weapon. The capacity to avenge rather than protect is still there too, that line is still not clear to me, so perhaps one of you can illuminate me. And once again, I thank you for your important insight and mutual respect of our differing opinions 🙂

    • But I have serious doubts that some people do use it as a means of intimidation, sense of control…

      Sure–there are plenty of idiots with guns, too–disproportionately, cops.

      But the numbers are pretty clear–Texas has only 10% more murders than Ontario.

      As for the cops’ attitude changes in the last twenty years–nothing’s changed as far as guns; what has changed is that cops have become federalized and militarized. It is intentional; it is a mechanism of control. The PTB know their days are numbered, and they are bunkering and hunkering. Their paid goons are showing their true purpose–control of the populace, revenue-raising, and protecting the PTB. Protecting your safety is an accidental side effect if it ever happens.

      We have over 50,000 SWAT raids per year–more and more of them for misdemeanor offenses and the vast majority for victimless crimes. Roughly 1% of them are the wrong address; frequently they murder the occupants, shoot the dogs, and cause massive property damage.

      How’s that different from the dreaded KGB in Soviet Russia? Well, they’re better armed…

      A gun is not going to protect me from my government. Or it’s officers.

      You’d be surprised. The knowledge of an armed citizenry is a serious deterrent to tyrants; it’s why Job #1 is disarmament. Eventually, when push comes to shove, people WILL fight back–and they know it.

      Interesting fact–it is Texas law (and of course common/natural law) that you may resist an unlawful arrest with deadly force; it has been tried, and won.

      • “Interesting fact–it is Texas law (and of course common/natural law) that you may resist an unlawful arrest with deadly force; it has been tried, and won.”

        REALLY? That my friend is awesome. I’d love to know the parameters of that law…I don’t think it would fly around here 🙂 It’s a big boys club. They protect their own.

        “You’d be surprised. The knowledge of an armed citizenry is a serious deterrent to tyrants; it’s why Job #1 is disarmament. Eventually, when push comes to shove, people WILL fight back–and they know it.”

        I see…I get it 🙂

        Your swat team figures literally make me want to throw up. THAT’s terrorizing.

        • Yep, Subchapter C Sec. 9.31; find it here.

          Although–good luck proving it in today’s kangaroo kourts.

          Yeah–50,000 SWAT raids. Black balaclava-clad goons dripping with military hardware and freshly injected steroids; the memories of bullying smaller classmates in grade school coursing through their feeble brains and a hard-on they can only achieve when hunting unarmed prey, long lost to them in the pursuit of love-making. Shriveled testicles rattling around sterile plastic cups under sheaths of Kevlar. Pudgy clumsy fingers wrapped lasciviously around federally-funded M-16’s, a work of engineering art turned to foul purpose.

          As Eric says–der tag kommt!

  8. The reason to carry a gun is devotion, the intense version of the basic emotion love.
    The reason to carry a gun is vigilance, the intense version of the basic emotion anticipation.

    They carry because of their emotion domination, the intense version of the basic emotion aggression. Because of terror, the intense version of the basic emotion fear.

    The men of Juarez, Mexico can keep a limited menu of firearms in their home. No concealed or open carry. A city of 1.4 million saw 3100 murders in 2010.

    Men in Switzerland are given machine guns or pistols and are conscripted soldiers until mid 40s. A country of 7.9 million saw 53 murders in 2011.

    You can seek an authority to believe. To feel subservience to, the intense version of the basic emotion submission.

    Or you can seek to know the truth of the matter. To feel zeal for the knowing of the facts, the intense version of the basic emotion optimism.

  9. I think this has been a fascinating topic, and I’ve learned much 🙂 I see my brother (mamba) has asked many of the questions I myself would want to know, also as an East Coaster in a lazy little city. There is crime, but when there is, it’s a big deal because it’s so rare. In the 80’s, we too had a serial killer (Allan Legere) on the loose for months, literally gripping the town in fear. I was a teen at the time (for the love of God don’t do the math for my age…lol) FOR A FEW MONTHS, people made sure they were locked away after dark, and after his deadly spree (guns weren’t his MO…raping and burning and stabbing etc. were) and subsequent capture, no one felt the need to fear that any more, and a town mourning the loss of a priest, elderly couple and pair of sisters was rocked to the core. There may have been an increase in gun protection while a lunatic was on the loose, but crime in this area is rather petty. Our newspapers tell you who was brought in on drug charges, pulled over for drunk driving (which I believe is more dangerous than ANY gun), etc. There have been a couple of murders, and a high school teacher charged with child pornography and luring. So we’ve had a number of incidents, after all no area is crime free. But they are few and far between, over the course of many years, which is why our city is so shocked when something happens to our own, everyone knows everyone. Yet, we don’t see people carrying in the streets, even so. Now I’m not saying our way is better or worse than yours…like my brother, it is sheer interest in other cultures, especially in one so close to our own, our neighbors to the south. I absolutely agree that most of the problem is with policing, I was married to one (WAS…very important here), so I can easily attest to the arrogance of some who NEED to be that authority because they are lacking in control in their own lives. Their PERCEIVED authority. So if you have a punk assed little rookie cop with a huge authority complex, and a happy little trigger finger all pumped to take out an unarmed person because he got “scared”, you’re screwed. You would be similarly screwed dealing with a seasoned state trooper all big in his britches, and I’ll certainly not exclude our RCMP or local police (keystone cops, seriously, what a joke). But here’s the thing, and take no offense, this is simply a question to broaden my understanding of our cultural differences. I speak to make conversation and friends, not to make enemies, and you all make excellent points and it’s a very interesting thread. But my question is this…if you get some trigger happy little cop pull you over, waving the taser and ABUSING that authority, what would happen if you shot him first? You can’t. Not with impunity, and if he had backup you’d be bullet riddled in seconds. Some of you have mentioned the real thugs (the boys in blue), and I couldn’t agree more. Believe me, I attended a lot of police functions during my marriage, and to be honest, I only know of two who I would trust, two who actually didn’t break the laws they swore to protect. Unfortunately, my ex was not one of them. He got all excited one night because he had been in “hot pursuit” of a guy smoking a joint behind the tavern and managed to race and take him down. What he neglected to mention was that the guy was in a full leg cast…LOL. I’m sorry….I digress. In a twist, I myself worked for a gun registry (administratively) for several years, and I admit, there is validity to all your points. Let’s be clear…I’m not on one side OR the other, I like to take everything in and enjoy a spirited chat, hell, you might change my mind regardless. The government’s reasoning for the gun registry is purely officer safety…does it work? I dunno. Hunting is big around here, and so many would carry long guns, that registry being recently abolished. Hunters definitely wish to exercise their right to their guns, why wouldn’t they? Around here, that’s a large part of OUR culture, and we have a large First Nations community who hunt in and out of season, as is THEIR right. At any time, I suppose a hunter could go absolutely batshit and climb the water tower, but that likelihood is low. But if he did, his gun would be registered…to what end? I agree, criminals don’t register their guns, their not exactly going to walk into a registry office and say “I’d just like to have this one on record”. So to me, it’s ludicrous to think that a gun registry would have any impact on a criminal’s ability to get a gun. It doesn’t. The argument is made that it increases officer safety, I guess for them to know what’s out there, and honestly, the registration fees are a huge cash cow for the government. In your country, and somewhat in ours, the credo “to serve and protect” gets slightly skewed, and some police officers, without their badges to hide behind, would be doing time already…had the same rules applied as to the average citizen. And of course, let’s not forget all the corporate thuggery. I worked for a doctor from South Africa, he moved his family to Canada because he could no longer handle having to pack heat to take his kids to school, some of his tales were mind blowing…but I believe him, and in that environment, I certainly would want to as well. The chance of criminal activity is very high, there’s no paranoia, it’s simply fact. My fear is to what degree our neighbors, our American friends, feel that need as well. And the possibility of things going horribly awry, as in the Treyvon Martin case. I’m all for RESPONSIBLE gun owners, but my fear is very much honest people who perceive a threat and use deadly force when there was perhaps none. I’d hate to be the gal who reached for a stick of gum in my purse and some idiot perceived reaching for something in there as a threat. How can you tell if someone is good and honest with their guns and has that lightning quick thinking to stand down if there is no real threat? You can think me stupid if you will, but I’d rather be thought of as inexperienced in these matters and seeking to understand. I do think the rest of the world sees you as a gun culture, and I wish it weren’t so. My grandmother used to say “wish in one hand, shit in the other and see which fills up first”. Rest her dear little soul. It’s hard to understand for us. I feel blessed to live in a part of the world where I can walk about in peace, around here, I’d be far more likely to be hit by a drunk driver or the 85 year old who can’t see straight, yet can drive a car. I’d also be more likely to get eaten by a bear (and no, that doesn’t happen much…lol). You can’t undo guns, you’re so right. And it is sad that so many Americans only feel safe if they carry a gun. Here, we don’t. I hope we never do. Far be it for me to judge, one reacts to the environment we live in. I’m all about protecting yourselves, and family, and property…I just see a huge margin for error in human reaction time, especially when scared. YOU might be a responsible gun owner, but how do you know the guy down the street is? What’s he going to do if he’s a little off his rocker and accidentally shoots some kid who’s running across his lawn? What concerns me, i guess, is that your perception of what requires fatal force may be far different from some yahoo who got a gun just because he has the right to. The system is flawed, as it is here, and I do not have any answers as to what would fix it, if indeed it could be. But it is fascinating, although somewhat horribly so (in that crime is such that it is felt to be necessary to carry a gun), to catch a glimpse of your mentality surrounding the issue. I don’t judge…ANYONE…if you fear enough that you have to have a gun to protect yourself, alright. I presume so would the guy who used his in a fit of road rage that no one saw coming. It’s the check and balance system that I don’t understand, so forgive my ignorance. Any cop can have a gun…whether he’s a decent one or not. Any citizen can have one too, whether they are decent or not. It’s the battle that concerns me, not the rights. If there were no guns, i imagine we’d simply be using knives, or spears, as before, so I agree that guns themselves do not kill. People do. People collect guns, antiques, all sorts of weaponry, most with no intention of ever using them, merely for the beauty of them, which lies in their deadly ability? In Canada, it is my right (in Ontario), as a female, to go topless. That law came into effect several years ago when I lived there, it was a big to do, guys thought it was great. It’s my right, but I don’t “need” to do it. In fact, most of the people who did feel they needed to were the ones that really shouldn’t have…lol. There is a difference between need and rights. I’m not fearful of responsible gun owners, or those that do feel they need one. I’m afraid of the people who only have one BECAUSE they have that right, need or not. It’s different in Canada…we’re weird like that 🙂 But good answers to good questions, guys, so thank you for a more personal view on the subject.

    • @Femme Brulee–

      Love the pen-name.

      How can you tell if someone is good and honest with their guns and has that lightning quick thinking to stand down if there is no real threat?

      Couple of reasons: first, among concealed handgun carriers in Texas, there are FAR fewer mistaken shootings than among cops; that is, for a given incident, concealed-carriers shoot fewer innocent people. In other words, they’re better than cops at making those decisions.

      Secondly, a huge number of people around me carry…and yet, nobody gets hurt by the non-criminal carriers. And, because there are so many people “packing”, criminals are scared to death to do anything.

      And it is sad that so many Americans only feel safe if they carry a gun. Here, we don’t. I hope we never do. Far be it for me to judge, one reacts to the environment we live in.

      You misunderstand, I’m afraid. It’s not about “feeling safe”. It is about exercising a fundamental human right, not granted by government but pre-existing and preceding any government–the right to self-defense. I don’t “feel” safe because I’m armed; even when disarmed, my sense of safety comes from the certain knowledge that I deserve to live and have the will to protect myself and my family.

      It’s the difference between sovereignty and serfdom.

      Honestly–you’re living an illusion of safety, because you have abrogated your personal right to defense to an “authority”. Yes, your surrounds in Ontario are apparently safe. But your sense of safety is evanescent, at best; see below for the REAL threat to your safety.

      And by the way–crime statistics show that Ontario, with a population of 13 million has roughly 600 murders/year. Texas, with a population of 25 million, has roughly 1250 murders/year…only a 10% difference! Do you still feel blissfully safe? And, what do you think now of this gun-crazy culture? Indeed, we’re polite down here. And as safe as Ontarians from crime.

      But the greatest threat to your safety is government–yet you trust it to protect that safety?

      And here’s the point: we who carry, and people who don’t but have weapons at home and in their cars, are consciously fighting against the very attitude you express with “I hope we never do”. Because what we are defending against, ultimately, is the most dangerous criminal gang; a criminal gang that has murdered at least 250 million people in the last century…that gang is government.

      Every mass murderer in history has first disarmed his victims–Stalin, Hitler, Mao, Pol Pot, Mugabe.

      I own, and carry, for the same reason ranchers raise cows, not lions. Cows don’t have teeth, claws, and the will to use them.

      So Femme–don’t be an eloi! Your safety is imaginary; for your greatest enemy is lulling you into a false sense of security, all the while quietly penning you in, domesticating you, and milking you. Eventually, cows whose milk production falls off are due for slaughter.

    • @Femme:

      By the way, as the ex-wife of a cop, you know well–and enunciate–the reasons to fear government more than criminals.

      At least criminals are honest in their intentions…and can be shot safely.

      Cops, on the other hand, enjoy legal impunity and an exaggerated sense of self-justification; as you note, a dangerous stew.

      Imagine that phenomenon writ large–and that’s government for you.

    • Hi Burnt Woman. I love your name…creme brulee is my very favorite dessert, and the play on words is exquisite.

      What a good, thoughtful post. I’m not sure how much light it throws on the subject, but I view carrying a gun in much the same light as having a fire insurance policy on my house. The chances of ever making a claim on the policy are remote, but if you do need to, it will save me a ton of money. The chances of ever having to use a gun are also remote, but if I do, it can save my life.

    • The problem is in what someone declares to be “reasonable”. Reasonable to whom? The ever power-grabbing lunatics in government and their sycophantic lap-dogs in the media and entertainment syndicates? The intellectually still-birthed and crippled masses addicted to television propaganda?

      • MoT…it’s what is reasonable to the government school “teachers” who are indoctrinating the next generation to be compliant and subservient to the almighty state.

        Ooops…did my cynicism just show?

    • Hi FB,

      Amen on the great handle!

      And also on what Methyl said in response. I won’t repeat all that because he’s already put it down succinctly.

      I’ll only add one comment. You mention Trayvon. As I understand the facts, this young thug physically assaulted the much older (and obviously not fit) Zimmerman. It may not have been prudent for Zimmerman to have approached the young thug in the first place, but in his capacity as neighborhood watchman, he had every right to. Asking questions such as “Who are you? What are you doing here?” did not entitle St. Trayvon – a gold-toofed thug who called himself a “nigger” – to physically attack the questioner (Zimmerman). The proper response would have been: “Nothing, leave me alone.” And then, walk away. But that’s not what St. Trayvon did. He exploded in rage – and attacked Zimmerman physically. Strike one against St. Trayvon – and in favor of Zimmerman.

      And I don’t see it as unreasonable of Zimmerman to have been in fear of his life as a large and stereotypical ghetto thug physically assaulted and overpowered him. His claim of self defense is absolutely plausible to me given the known facts – the assault by Trayvon and the clear evidence of a beatdown at his hands. Thugs such as St. Trayvon often don’t stop at just the beatdown. They are known for acts of extreme violence. Once he had Zimmerman down, the possibility that St. Trayvon would use Zimmerman’s own gun to administer the coupe de grace is extremely plausible.

      St. Trayvon made his bed – and now he’s lying in it. Six feet under.

      Mind: This isn’t a race issue. It’s simply been turned into one by the Usual Suspects.

      Had Neil deGrasse Tyson been walking through the neighborhood that night, none of this would have happened. And even St. Trayvon. If only he’d not attacked Zimmerman. Just turned and walked away. But no. He’d been “disrespected” – and decided to teach Zimmerman a lesson with his fists.

      That cost him his life.

      It’s too bad. But it’s not something Zimmerman deserves to be held criminally responsible for.

  10. Mamba: Here’s a case in point; Australian state gun laws were consolidated under the National Agreement on Firearms in 1996. There were subsequent “amnesties” for turning in restricted weapons (i.e. the euphemism for confiscation). Strict licensing was required for all remaining weapons. Those folks who wished to keep their weapons had to show a “Genuine Reason” (or a “Genuine Need” in the case of centerfire rifles) to get the license. The Australians’ semiautomatic and pump action weapons that were turned in were destroyed. Prior to this violent crime was decreasing. After this, violent crime in Australia increased (http://www.lexrex.com/articles/australia.htm).

    A relatively new phenomenon picked up steam; home invasions. The South Australia Police had to come up with a definition for the term in 1997 (http://www.ocsar.sa.gov.au/docs/information_bulletins/IB11.pdf) The mere idea that confronting an armed homeowner could get you shot, caused criminals to target unoccupied dwellings for robbery prior to the ban. Not anymore; they walk in threaten you (Funny thing, the criminals ignore weapons laws. Hmmm.), tie you up and only take your stuff if you’re lucky (http://www.dailytelegraph.com.au/news/sydney-news/from-penrith-to-point-piper-why-suburban-fortresses-increase-home-invasions/story-e6freuzi-1226311804620).
    .

    So now the liberal media and police organizations want to blame better home security systems as the reason home invasions are up; certainly not the gun ban. They try to justify it by saying that car-jackings increased after automotive security systems improved. In other words, it’s much harder to steal a new vehicle without the keys, so the best time to do it is when the owner is behind wheel. I would agree; that makes sense. But the claim that the same thing for applies to improved security systems in private dwellings doesn’t equate. There is nothing preventing the homeowner from activating the “panic” function of the alarm system when the interlopers break a window or kick in the door if it’s not “set.” What the criminals do know is, (a) most law abiding citizens, out of fear from what the police will do to them if they’re found with a gun, have already disarmed; and (b), they can be in, take your shit and be gone before the police will ever even know it, much less arrive on the scene. Easy pickins as they say down South.

    But that’s not the real reason for gun registration, licensing and the ultimate goals of prohibition and confiscation. Governments (generic timeless term, no specific country or state in mind) don’t age well. They always seem to get top heavy, corrupt, greedy and oppressive. When this happens popular backlash is all but inevitable and an armed populace can make a real mess out of the powers that be in short order. The framers knew this. Hence they enshrined “the right” under the Second Amendment to the U. S. Constitution. I’m old enough that I had a social studies teacher that actually taught us that the Second Amendment was the final check and balance in our system of government. It’s not there solely for us to “go duck hunting,” target shooting or even be able to defend ourselves from common criminals. Those are certainly benefits enjoyed by the armed man. No, primary reason for the “embarrassing” Second Amendment was to hold the government in awe of the populace. I believe that enough of that cultural memory exists to this day and that is why so many of us jealously guard the right to keep and bear arms. I surmise that this is why you, Mamba, and many other folks around the world view us as a “gun culture.” I have a “need” for guns because it is my right. And I don’t “need” any other reason.

  11. @mamba,

    I live in Houston, the fourth largest city in America. Crime, although increasing now, has until recently been extremely, low–historically low, and especially the areas I frequent.

    And yet I carry one, with many more at home.

    Why? Do I expect trouble? Of course not–as Monty Python said, “No-one expects the Spanish Inquisition!”

    They why? It’s the principle!

    An armed society is a polite society–yes, that’s true. But more importantly to me, holding arms is the difference between a citizen and a slave.

    I do it so I’m totally accustomed to it; so people around me (who know I carry) know it, and feel comfortable with it. It’s an act of advertising, of proselytizing, so the practice of arms and comfort with them increases.

    And why are those virtues? Because the REAL reason for the 2nd Amendment is coming to the fore right now–it’s not for hunting. It’s for self-defense; and self-defense from the largest, best-organized and funded (with MY money) gang of criminals the planet has ever borne!

    Here in the South, having many guns around does not make people uptight. We’re not walking on eggshells; we’re not paranoid or hyper-vigilant. On the contrary we’re much more relaxed than our uptight Marxist countrymen (how it pains me to say that) in the north-east. There’s a gentility, a politeness, in the South; a remnant of mutual respect among co-equal Sovereigns, and it’s gaining strength again. That solidarity of strength among equals–something that’s purposely destroyed by collectivism.

    • Methyl’s right about all that. Who would you personally have more respect for? A simpering panty-waist handing over his car keys and wallet to some smart ass callous young thug who walks away ready and able to do it again to the next person? Or an upright and honest armed man who not only won’t allow himself to be needlessly stripped of the fruits of his labor, but will potentially prevent the thug from ever doing it again? It may be cliché, but this is really true: When seconds count the police will there in minutes. Worse yet, if it’s only one cop he may not feel comfortable coming to your aid. What will happen to you as he calls, and then waits, for backup?

      I have personal experience in these matters, on more than one occasion. I am originally from Tidewater Virginia. In certain sections crime is indeed rampant and its a good idea to know where those areas are and stay away. Being informed and staying out of harms way (like not working under a suspended load) is one way of being prepared. But sometimes violent crime spills over into the areas we consider to be “safe.” I’ve written about this before, but bears repeating: In 1987 a serial rapist that had allegedly been operating around the Peninsula (Newport News, Hampton) walked into my house in broad daylight, buck naked, picked a knife up off my kitchen counter and chased my (now ex) wife into our bedroom. She picked her .38 up off the nightstand and shot his sorry ass. Not only did he not rape her or even touch her, he got to spend four years of quality time in the state penitentiary…after he got out of the hospital. Our sheriff noted that nothing like that had ever happened in the rural county I’m from during the entire 30 years he was in office. Was she paranoid for being armed and trained? Hardly. Sometimes bad things happen to good people. So it’s best to be prepared.

      Mamba, guns are tools plain and simple. Carrying that tool is no indication that the armed man (or woman) is interested in shooting or killing anyone. Quite the contrary; many of us carry to prevent injury or loss of life. The purpose is to deter, thwart and if necessary stop the commission of a crime with force. If the application of force proves lethal to the criminal that is his/her fault. Don’t commit acts of aggression (i.e. violent crime) and you needn’t worry about suffering the consequences. But if your stock and trade is aggressive and violent crime, there can be no better place to operate than in gun free crime zones; hence what happened in the totally disarmed Aurora, Colorado theatre. If you think your intended victims may retaliate in kind you will most likely reconsider. This is why we don’t generally see predators attacking each other in the wild; a serious injury means a loss of the predator’s ability to obtain food which means an end to that predator’s life.

  12. Idahoans LOVE guns! And it’s not surprising how few gun crimes are committed. I can at least give the sensible ones here, and not the granola flakes from California, credit where credit is due.

  13. I don’t feel like I necessarily NEED to carry a gun everywhere I go… but I carry one in my car, just in case. I like the comment above, stating that “I can’t predict the future…” I totally agree… if I COULD, then I could just avoid situations all together.
    I also have plenty of guns at the house. I prefer to keep them at home, most of the time, because my main goal is to DEFEND my house and family… if the need arises.
    But, I feel a stark contrast to what an “outsider looking in” might see as “It’s so bad that everyone carries a gun around there!”

    Honestly, I live in South. It’s no big deal to see someone walking around, OPEN carry, just about everywhere. We, also, don’t have the amount of gun crime as other areas.
    “An armed society is a polite society” – Robert A. Heinlein.

    • Very good to know, thanks! Your attitude on it is actually closer to what i was expecting when i first asked the question…where the gun isn’t seen as a requirement, mostly left at home, and crime isn’t that bad.

      I hope you’re right and that crime isn’t as bad, but as you pointed out, as an outsider seeing people insisting on carrying guns all the time everywhere it did lead me to wonder just what Mad Max apocolypse america was? (laugh).

      Thanks again.

      P.s. love the quote at the end, but wonder if he’d say the same thing on a global scale with nuclear weapons (as in the statement “a nuclear armed world is a polite world” for example. but that’s another question for another time (LOL)

      • Mamba, there are those that believe MAD (Mutually Assured Destruction) is what prevents anyone from pushing the nuclear button. So in a sense the idea that an armed society is a polite society plays out on the world’s political stage as well. No one (not even the sociopathic elite) wants to rule over a radiologically contaminated post holocaust wasteland of sick and dying subjects. Think about it.

        • I am thinking about this, and realize if this is true then countries like Iran for example should be allowed to have a nuclear bomb, for exactly your reasons stated.

          Yet much of the world fights this idea. How curious…

          • “…then countries like Iran for example should be allowed to have a nuclear bomb.”

            Allowed, Mamba?

            By whom?

            You’ve apparently accepted the Chimponian-Cloveronian notion that “we” get to decide who is allowed to possess weapons… both macro and micro.

            I hope the Iranians do succeed in building a bomb. So they can tell us – that is, U.S. – to fuck off.

          • Damn, Eric beat me to it–the word “allowed”–is vile in its implications. I won’t restate his invective against it.

            And yes–how curious that the “rest of the world” fights it. In actual fact, it’s just a few countries, mostly the U.S. and its “willing partners” i.e. paid-for satraps and fellow hegemons of the New World Order.

            Of course they’re fully nuclear-armed–and have actually used them in the case of the U.S.

            Curious, indeed!

    • That reminds me of the story of the old lady who gets stopped by a cop and politely tells the cop that she has a .45 in her purse, Saturday Night Special in the glove box, a shotgun in the trunk. The cop asks her what she is afraid of and she replies: absolutely nothing.

  14. “But like the original post emntioned, maybe it’s the “must be armed at all times” emntality that BREEDS the thuggery” – LOL.

    The state has a monopoly on crime and that is what breeds the thuggery. Remember that Americans carry to DEFEND themselves whilst the thugs OFFEND. I always laugh when cops say their job is so dangerous. Well pal, nobody forced you to pull that car over, and rifle through it and taze the driver b/c he wouldn’t mindlessly submit. THAT is what breeds the contempt for cops and creates the “blowback” that they endure.

    • Totally agree there on the cops blowback! Yeah, it’s THAT kind of thing that justifies carrying a gun everywhere you go, when the protectors are such assholes and trigger-happy. yeah their job is so dangerous…so why did you CHOOSE that profession then? You’d think it’s in their best interests to have people actually WANT to help them rather than see themselves as THE law!

      Like I asked though, if the average citizen sees everyone as a potential threat, what would you expect when the same pool of citizens now can act with impunity? You get what we got…asshole arrogant thugs. for THEM, grab the gun before leaving the house for sure! 🙂

  15. I’ve seen this question asked multiple times, and there’s a simple answer: I carry because I can’t predict the future. If I could know ahead of time the exact time and place I’d need a gun, I’d simply avoid the situation. I’m sure the people in the Chicago theater never thought a gun would be needed that night. They were wrong. Dead wrong.

    • The problem is if you expect to need to carry lethal force “just in case”, then you’d be living in fear of society in general. That’s almost the definition of paranoia after all. That’s why I questioned the “need” to carry the gun. I can see why some people THINK that they could be attacked at any time, not being able to predict the future, but I was wondering if it ACTUALLY is that bad in your country.

      To put it another way…do you cary a first aid kit everywhere you go, in a pouch beside your gun? If someone asked you to leave it at the door of a bar, would you object because you could get hurt and need the medical supplies available at all times just in case? Would your case include snake anti-venom, just in case you run into one?

      Without a demonstratable need (anarchy in the streets for example) I see just as much need to carry the first-aid kit as the gun, and was curious to why.

      As for the Chicago theater incident, that’s actually a good example of my point. AFTER the shooting one can easily say that if more people were armed he’d have been put down on the spot and that’s probably correct (ignoring crossfire and trauma of killing someone for now). Now picture the mentality of a hundred people just going to relax with a movie and all of them making sure to pack their gun because they are EXPECTING a firefight. Can’t be done. If I felt I had to have a gun just to go to the movies, I would move to a new area because the community would be like Gotham city! 🙂

      By the same logic BTW, do you bring a fire extinguisher to the theater, in case a fire starts and the flames have you trapped or someone else is on fire and you can help them, saving their life? Identical logic after all.

      • There was a time in both our country’s and your country’s history when everyone did carry a sidearm and it was no big deal. The problem is that it’s considered “wierd” now to do so even though the same threats still exist.

        First aid kit? What’s that go to do with anything? We’re talking life or death when it comes to armed thugs not band-aids. Theater’s have their own fire extinguishers.

        I’ve never been in an accident but yes, I do buckle up whenever I’m in the car because it’s a matter of life or death.

        I think Eric has made the point about as clear as is needed. We can’t uninvent guns so bad people will have them and do bad things with them so you can choose to be a victim or you can choose to be a survivor.

        • Ah, that’s what I was wondering…do the same threats exist in your country (and mine), or is it just paranoia? I gather from the replies that the threats DO exist, but apparently much more in your country, or at least more people are willing to openly prepare for it. Is this correct?

          As for the first aid comment, it was to show parallels in logic. The arguement is that a gun is required for preparation against potential physical threats, while a first aid kit is to prepare against potential MEDICAL threats. I was wondering why one is considered essensial while the other is not, though they would appear to be for the same reason…to prepare for unknown problems hat could be life-threatning without any direct reason to fear any incidents.

          As for the fire extinguisher in the theater, let me ask you seriously…if the theater told you they’d have ARMED staff watching you, would you then be willing to leave YOUR gun at the front counter? If the answer is “NO” then you’ve made my point on paranoia, and if the answer is “YES” then you agree that a gun is not always necessary. Am I wrong?

          Final thought…if people are walking around in their community seeing themselves as victim or survivor, then I think I have my answer as to what kind of society America is, a fearful warzone where anyone is seen as a threat by default, which was my original question. I was kind of afraid this would be the answer, but it’s hard to see otherwise if even the best reason to carry everywhere is “so I don’t get attacked by either the people or the cops”.

          Thank you for your replies, sincerely!

          • Is it paranoid (your term) to assume the responsibility of being prepared and able to defend oneself?

            Do you prefer to drive your car – or have someone else drive it for you?

            I know my own skill level with a handgun. I know my own gun. I do not know the skill level of “trained” guards – and the fact is, these “trained” guards (cops) are often woefully deficient. If my life is potentially on the line, that is serious business. And it’s my business, first and foremost.

            Is that paranoid?

            Look: If you live in a Norman Rockwell-like small town full of nice people with no real crime to speak of, then it’s probably not a “demonstrable need” (in most people’s minds) to carry a pistol. Fine and good. But no harm is done by doing so, either. So, there’s no issue.

            Some people like to bodybuild. Or develop martial arts skills. Is there a “demonstrable need” for either? Who “needs” to bench press 300 pounds? Or know how to deliver a kick-punch combo?

            Who has a “demonstrable need” for a Corvette? Or a beefy 4×4 truck?

            Do you really “need” that big T-Bone steak?

            Do you see where I am going with this….?

          • “if the theater told you they’d have ARMED staff watching you, would you then be willing to leave YOUR gun at the front counter? If the answer is “NO” then you’ve made my point on paranoia, and if the answer is “YES” then you agree that a gun is not always necessary. Am I wrong?”

            Yes you are wrong because you are missing the basic principle. Let me ask you this: if the govt told you that they would protect you, would you no longer take any measures to protect yourself? Oh wait, the govt does tell you that and they fail miserably every day.

            That’s why people have car alarms, and in home security systems, and neighborhood watch, and watch dogs, and motion sensored flood lights and … I guess those things are a mark of paranoia as well?

            It’s every individual’s responsible to provide for their safety and security and since we cannot uninvent guns then it would be irresponsible and dangerous to just cross your fingers and “hope” someone with a gun doesn’t harm you or your family. It’s has nothing to do with paranoia but rather common sense.

            It’s like the airbag in a car: you hope you never have to use it because if you do, it means it’s a matter of life or death, but you’ll be glad you had it if you do.

            You’re sensationalizing and demogoging the issue. To conscientiously choose to not take the necessary measures to provide for your safety and security is just stupid. What if guns didn’t exist? Would we be less paranoid in your eyes because we would walk around w/o a gun and if someone with a sword attacked us, we just died?

            Your comments are ridiculous.

          • (had to go back one level, no deep thread reply, sorry about that.)

            Eric first…”is it paranoid to assume responsibility to be prepared and defend yourself”. Certainly not…but it feels paranoid to assume that every interaction in a public place with people will result in the need to shoot them. As I said though, it’s probably because it’s so unfamiliar to me.

            I do see where you’re going with your points…if I understand you, you’re saying “In the end it’s up to the individual and ONLY the individual to protect themselves”, and to do so, personal environment control and preparation is the key. But remember, my original question was basically to ask “is it really that bad in America or just a preception” (that I called ‘paranoia’ because it MAY not be based on reality, that’s what I was asking). Don seems to hint that it can be that bad in areas so best to assume it i that bad, while you lean towards the “not really bad but still just in case”.

            Remember, I’m not questioning the gun at all, nor the rights, nor the abuses from cops and criminals. I think where I’m REALLY going wrong then is I see the guns as potential instigators rather than the “feeling of confort knowing everyone’s armed” that you imply. Would you agree?

            DON, I see your analogy on the theater guards and cops, and I’m glad for it. What you’re saying is it doesn’t matter what safety precautions are given, you would only feel comfortable if the situation is in YOUR hands for security…which remember I have no problem with at all! If that’s what it takes for you tofeel secure in your community, than go for it! what i was questioning was whether it’s just to make you FEEL safer, or if you would be ACTUALLY in danger every day. slowly getting my answer from the replies.

            BTW, wy would you trust the theatre fire extinguisher and not bring your own? Same logic after all.

            But that’s not important…what IS is your last statement of if no guns and the like. Like I said to eric, I’m not familiar with everyone carrying guns so it’s a little unusual to me, but to answer your question, virtually nobody around here has a gun, the crime is virtually nill though people get attacked occasionally with knives and guns still (and yes, even a sword 2 years ago, seriously), the cops were typically useless, and people STILL didn’t feel the need to carry a gun because the gun simply wasn’t a factor in the equasion. we didn’t start seeing everybody as a potential attacker, nor did we insist on carrying our own knives everywhere. the mentality around the crimes was totally different, and THAT’S what I’m asking about.

            If my wording or comments seem ridiculous, sorry about that. Just trying to understand the culture differences. I’m trying to use analogies to make my points clear for rebuttal, but if I suck at it, I’ll try harder.

            Maybe if I worded the question differently…when you leave the house, do you EXPECT to get into a situation where the gun is required, or is it PURE comfort-preparation? For that matter, Eric and Don, have you personally ever had to use a gun for real? Just curious…no need to answer if you don’t want to.

          • If it’s a case of “paranoia” then all you have to look at are the cops themselves. Why are they constantly armed and ever eager to pull a weapon on unarmed people? If I were paranoid of anyone it would be cops and fellow travelers not the general citizenry.

          • I wouldn’t leave my gun (if I had one) any more than I would leave my wallet or my watch or my car keys or anything of value at the counter because of the possibility of theft. Not because I would fear not being armed, but because the gun has value.

            Thus this test of yours is flawed because it ignores other factors in the decision process.

          • Don, I would go a step further. When government protects people it simplifies things for criminals thus encouraging their activities. Thus the need for firearms works counter intuitively IMO. The more government takes the monopoly on protection the more people need to own their own means of protection, the less government does the less people need it on their own. My premise being that a free environment is not as predictable for the criminal. More risky for the criminal. More risk means worse risk/reward ratio. Worse risk/reward, less criminal activity.

            Thus, it should be best for those who don’t want to own guns to be in society where people are free to have them or not. It’s not the gun that keeps the criminals at bay, it’s the not knowing if there’s a gun.

          • “As for the fire extinguisher in the theater, let me ask you seriously…if the theater told you they’d have ARMED staff watching you, would you then be willing to leave YOUR gun at the front counter? If the answer is “NO” then you’ve made my point on paranoia, and if the answer is “YES” then you agree that a gun is not always necessary. Am I wrong?”

            Yes, you are wrong. Freedom is not paranoia. Liberty. the right to be secure in one’s person.

          • I assume that in your little corner of Soviet Canuckistan is lilly-white and inherently low-crime. I’d rather ask your fellow Canucks in Toronto, where a significant amount of Caribbean transplants who themselves have adopted the ways of they fellow ‘gangstas’ in the States feel.
            Don’t presume to judge we Americans as violent. Without us, you’d be paying homage to the Germans and seig-heiling his successors.

      • The issue isn’t whether you ought to carry a gun. If you don’t consider it prudent or necessary, then don’t. But others may have different views – and if they wish to carry a gun, that is their right.

        Your “demonstrable need” is entirely subjective. It’s also entirely beside the point.

        PS: Your premise that the presence of armed people is inherently destabilizing – or causes tension – is just not true. I, for example, live in an area where everyone has guns in their homes. Most adult men (and many women) have CC permits. It is a given, whenever you are out and about, that probably every third person you encounter is carrying. This makes me feel safer. Because I am safer. “Gun crime” is virtually nonexistent here (in sharp contrast to, say, DC or Chicongo). Because while criminals are predators, most predators prefer weak victims.

        • The RIGHT to carry the gun is absolutely NOT in question here. There’s no question that people SHOULD be able to carry a gun if they feel it’s necessary. Believe me, NO problems there.

          The “denonstratable need” is slightly subjective, but hardly irrelevant though. The whole point of my question was “is yoursociety actually rampant with violence daily, or it meely a precaution because of a precieved threat. One is easially measured (clearly more need to carry a gun in the bronx than in the amish country for example) while the other means the person looking around and THINKING they are in danger if they do not have a gun at all times. It’s this thought process that was the root of my question.

          I agree I DO think of the presence of multiple guns as destabilizing, but to be fair, it’s proabbly because I am not used to it. If I grew up with a gun being seen in the community as just another accessory in an outfit, then yeah I wouldn’t consider it anything unusual or “millitaristic” probably.

          I’m curious though…you bring up a good point at the end. If you carry a gun because everyone around you is a potential threat, but you have no objection with everyone being armed, then how does that make you feel safer? Wouldn’t that just increase the odds that your potential threat is just as armed as you? I realize that criminals are going to carry guns regardless, but if everyone is armed, how can you even begin to identify a potential criminal? For comparison, if someone around here is carrying a gun, THAT becomes the indication of potential criminal activity (cops included unfortunately!)

          Thanks aga for the replies, very informative.

          • “If you carry a gun because everyone around you is a potential threat, but you have no objection with everyone being armed, then how does that make you feel safer?”

            That’s the part you’re missing. Eric doesn’t carry b/c he sees everyone as a threat – just the opposite in fact. He carries because the threat of physical harm by a bad person is real, it exists in every society whether Eric carries or not.

            A threat to personal safety doesn’t just come from a person with a gun. It can come from a person with a baseball bat or a gang of people or even a rabid dog or wolf in Eric’s part of the world.

            Ask yourself why people have car alarms. Is it because they see everyone around them as a potential car thief?

          • “if someone around here is carrying a gun, THAT becomes the indication of potential criminal activity” – that is a very dangerous social attitude. That leads to good people being punished who have done nothing wrong and leaves good people sitting ducks for the criminals.

            Guns don’t kill people anymore than spoons make people fat or pencils misspell words.

          • Don, I think you hit it pefectly…he’s not seeing EVERYONE as a threat, but he IS clearly seeing that ANYONE could POTENTIALLY be a threat. And protection against the threat is just seen as a good idea.

            So given that I would have asked if the threats are REAL (actually happened) or whether it’s just precaution/paranoia. Your next sentence seems to make it clear you’d believe the threats are REAL. That’s what I wanted to know about your culture…it’s clearly believed that the threats are real and can occur at any time regardless of situation.

            So…DO they? Are crime rates extrordinary, or it still just preception that someone COULD be a threat? Not quite sure yet…your statement’s pretty definative but others say otherwise.

            Car alarms…same as a lock on the door, basic level of prevention because anyone COULD be a car thief. but if the car alarm was cumbersome or costly and there was no car thefts in the past 10 years, then yes I’d consider it optional and only for COMFORT not demonstratable need.

            Guns and spoons…a gun only has ONE purpose…to kill or intimidate. Now if that’s why you’re carrying, then that’s perfectly fine. Personally I find badges far more threatning. 🙂 Remember, I was wondering if you actually HAVE to carry the gun or if you just really WANT to, and I think I got that answer now…

            • Mamba,

              “Guns and spoons…a gun only has ONE purpose…to kill or intimidate.”

              Says who?

              A gun has several other purposes. Some collect guns and appreciate them for the industrial art they are. Others enjoy honing the skill of shooting accurately.

              And yes, guns can be used to kill and intimidate predators, two legged and four. There is nothing wrong with this, either.

              Your statement is both flatly wrong and demagogic. It’s the sort of thing Sarah Brady or Chuck Schumer routinely say.

          • Eric asks: “Who says guns only have one purpose? collectors and sport shooters for example” (paraphrased slightly)

            Yes, but NEITHER of those things apply to those who carry it in the street. You’re not spoot shooting when at a coffee shop (hopefully!) and collector guns stay at home normally or some other display.

            what I meant to say was the only purpose for a gun TO BE WORN AROUND THE TOWN is to kill or intimidate. If you can think of a reasonable typical third use for a CARRIED gun, I’m all ears! (laugh)

            I have to more careful on my wording…

            • Mamba,

              I’m getting weary of this – because you are using language that suggests strongly you’re opposed to people possessing guns/carrying them… unless there’s a “demonstrable need” – as defined by you.

              Language such as “kill and intimidate.” Loaded terms – implying a desire or intent to commit aggressive violence. That to carry is to be paranoid or macho or looking for an excuse. Something like that.

              Vicious bullshit, sez me.

              An honest citizen carrying his gun is not looking to “kill or intimidate” anyone. That is, unless they demonstrate their intent to kill or intimidate (to use your language – only properly) him first.

              Defense – vs. offense.

              Moral – vs. immoral.

              Everything’s been explained to you now very carefully. You either get – or you don’t.

          • “TO BE WORN AROUND THE TOWN is to kill or intimidate.”

            Um, defend oneself. Killing is not the purpose unless all other options are closed.

            Intimidate? If it is a concealed carry, no intimidation as nobody would be aware of it’s presence.

          • Eric, sorry to weary you, but that’s ok, because you’re right the positions have been explained. Ironically we don’t actually disagree much either.

            I’m happy to wrap up with a summary as I understand it explained, and everyone can tell me where I’m wrong. (laugh)

            -Crime rates really AREN’T too bad in the states (in general), but the theory is that it’s that way BECAUSE of the guns. In some areas it is higher, but for the most part people just prefer to be prepared and take personal responsibility for their safety, and the gun is the easiest way to do so.

            -Gun uses when being carried: even the HONEST gun user is carrying it to imtimidate the criminal…they know he’s armed and therefore not the person to mess with. If used in defense, they are either going to try and INTIMIDATE the criminal into giving up, or they will try and KILL the criminal if they do not comply. I have no problem with this of course, but it doesn’t change the fact of the nature of the USE of the gun. There’s nothing to defend here…it’s morally justified intimidation for protection. We seem to agree here again, not sure the problem.

            The language was used “intimidate” or “kill” simply because it’s exactly what happens! Seriously, if you point a gun at someone, even in self defense, what ELSE can you say you’re doing to the person? No problem here of course, but soft-language changes nothing here, so why bother?

            ME2’s points adressed by this as well BTW, so nothing to say there, though intimidation occurs when forced to use the gun. In a CC environment the criminal is forced to take a gamble on the other person being armed. Not much different than life without CC really since anyone could be armed anyway.

            So…the root question I asked has been answered, and I got a lot more general info on the gun culture of the states as well. Thanks again to everyone who replied, it was greatly appreciated!

            (feel free to discuss on your own, but I’ll only jump in if asked directly to avoid inadvertantly annoying anyone. That was NOT my intent, believe me!)

            Oh as for “strongly opposed” to gun carry, absolutely NOT. I admit I don’t understand the obsession with the guns, nor do I understand the need people have to carry them everywhere, which is why I asked the questions I did. Now that I asked them, I’m starting to understand the mindset of gun carryers from those that replied. It’s really that simple.

            My wording is simply describing the gun as what it is…an instrument of power and death. Only the OWNER determines the morality, but the device is still a brutal device…that’s why it’s used!

            Just like a chainsaw can cut down a tree to build a home or cut down a person brutally, it’s in HOW it’s used, but it doesn’t change the fact it’s designed to cut large things up. A gun can be used for defense or attack, but it’s function is to drive pieces of metal through other objects at a distance in order to cause damage or death. Changing the language may make people feel better, but it’s just description.

            If I strongly opposed guns in general, I’d say something like “The community can’t be that bad, lighten up!” Instead I flat out ASKED if the community was really that bad because in mine the guns themselves are seen as unusual. That’s really it…anything else interpreted was added by others, not me. (at least, not deliberately!)

            Anyway, thanks again to all, and sorry if I ruffled a feather or 2 by accident!

            • You… continue… using/belaboring demagogic, inflammatory – and factually inaccurate words. Why? What is your purpose?

              What would you say to me if I kept writing that high-performance cars KILL and INTIMIDATE (using ALL CAPS for that extra oomph of emphasis)?

              Well, yes, they can serve as the instrument of death – and some people are intimidated by them. So? Is that their primary purpose or attribute? Of course not – unless you’re a bed-wetter of the Joan Claybrook sort.

              Same goes for guns.

              Certainly, they can be used to kill and intimidate. But that is not what most people use them for. Or even many people. There are a relative handful of assholes who use guns to kill and to intimidate. The rest of us use them for sporting purposes, or because we enjoy and appreciate fine equipment – or, for purposes of self-defense.

              You elect to harp on their misuse – and imply that such misuse is generally characteristic by your choice of words and choice to continue harping on those words.

              Guns are not evil totems. They are not menacing – as such. Some people are.

              And that’s one of the many legitimate reasons for wanting to have a gun.

        • Ummm, Eric, we keep agreeing and you don’t seem to see it, and you’re introducing things that aren’t even in question. Final time, I promise:

          I used all caps because I don’t know how to use bold/underline commands and all caps is the easiest way for me to emphasize a word, that’s all. Sorry if it was confusing.

          “Why do I use deflamatory/factually inaccurate words to describe a gun?” When did I use an inaccurate word? I described the gun as a tool that can be used for defense or offence. I said it can intimidate and/or kill. I repeated that I AGREE with you that it’s the intent of the user that determines the use of the gun. That’s a description of the tool and nothing more, the biases here are YOURS, not mine! If I describe a knife as “sharp”, I’m not implying that those who own one are serial-slashers!

          I think you’re coming at this from the opposite side…any wording that even hints at the gun as anything other than pure goodness is “deflamatory”, even when there is no intent. But sorry, if I describe fire as “hot and potentially destructive” it’s not evil wording to counter the benefits of fire, it’s just a simple description of it. I describe a gun as a powerful tool that can kill. That’s NOT a moral statement, nor does it say ANYTHING about the justified uses of the tool, it just describes it. You obviously respect guns, surely you can agree with THAT, right? 🙂

          “Well, yes, they can serve as the instrument of death – and some people are intimidated by them. So? Is that their primary purpose or attribute? Of course not – unless you’re a bed-wetter of the Joan Claybrook sort.”

          See, now you have lost me…freely admitted. You start talking about gun collectors and sport shooters but that has nothing to do with the topic. Really now, the primary purpose of a gun is to punch holes into things at a distance. That’s not even up for debate, it’s how it’s designed! So if you are carrying a gun and have to use it, you either are going to punch holes into someone, or scare them into thinking you will so the sutuation is diffused. This is JUST and MORAL and HONEST, so I can’t understand why this is an issue!

          You keep saying I harp on them as evil or focus on their misuse, but I AM NOT. I must have said a dozen times already that it’s a tool, and the USER determines the usage. You say I’m harping on this through my choice of words.

          I didn’t comment on gun collectors or range/sport shooters simply because that wasn’t what we were talking about. YOU brought that up remember? I was talking about the use of a gun when carried around everywhere and you brought up that side purpose to try and give me alternative uses for a gun (because I forgot to include the word “carried”).

          I never ONCE said guns were “evil totems”, but I respect them enough to know they can kill, and I’m not afraid to describe it as such. It’s not a belt buckle, it’s a weapon, carried for justified purposes of defence by a law abiding person. We’ve agreed on this point since day one, but apparently I’m not treating the gun casually enough? I REALLY don’t know where you think I’m against guns, since as far as I can see, we agree on like 90% of your points!

          I merely asked why it was necessary and described the gun as it is, and suddenly I’m against guns and telling people to give them up? Never ever ever would I say that, nor did I.

          So I give up…please describe to me a typical encounter with a potential threat (you choose) and your LEGETIMATE HONEST JUST response with the gun (as you choose) and NOT describe the encounter with words that hint that you’re holding a deadly weapon and that the other’s person’s health/life is not at stake, and remember you’re not “intimidating’ the person, you’re…what exactly? I don’t know what flowery word you’d use to describe threating to shoot someone if they don’t back off!

          …but please, if you’re bored, reread my posts, I thought I was pretty clear on my position on the guns themselves, I was just trying to understand the culture behind it.

          P.S. I’ll give you “paranoid” as a bad word to describe, because AT FIRST it sounded paranoid, almost my clinical definition. Follow-up replies clarified this point, and I stopped using that word. Now…I’d probably use the word “overtly cautious” becasue the threats aren’t 100% imaginary, but depending on the area might be pretty low. To guard against that observable threat is not paranoia.

          • What I don’t like, Mamba, is your tortuous insistence on using loaded terms that imply aggressive intent. I own guns, like most gun owners, primarily for the following reasons (in descending order):

            * To exercise my rights (the mere act of possession is an assertion of an important right).
            * For self defense.
            * Because I appreciate them as machines.
            * Because I enjoy plinking at targets in my backyard.

            To put “intimidate and kill” at the top of the list, as you do, reeks of bias against guns. It suggests you see them primarily as implements of domination and aggression – and for people like me (which is most people who own guns) that is the absolute last thing we have them for. The last thing we ever want to deal with is harming another person – or even threatening to. Ok?

            So, stop it already with the demagogic verbiage.

          • What does the state use firearms for?
            To intimidate and kill.

            Thus, if this is the reasoning for “gun control” then obviously first on the list of the people who should be disarmed are those who run and are employed by government. It is these people who are the largest category of those who carry firearms expressly for the purpose of intimidation and killing.

          • Ok then, maybe this will help. I’ll use your list of reason in your own priority:

            “Exercise right to carry”. No objection at all, never have, never will. I hope we’re good on this one at least. 🙂 I completely agree that everyone has the right for protection if they think they need it, remember my original question was just to ask if it was needed or not in your country.

            “self defense”. Excellent. This is the ONLY one relevant to the post. Now how do you plan to describe it’s use without my “loaded words”?

            “appreciate them as machines”. True, but 100% irrelevant to carrying them around the town, so nothing to comment on.

            “target shooting”. No problem at all, but again 100% irrelevant to carrying them around the town, so nothing to comment on.

            You see? YOU introduced 3 completely irrelevant tangents for gun usage relating to the topic, but say that *I* have a bias! 🙂 It’s hard to understand…

            If I was talking about sport shooting or collectors then of course I wouldn’t be talking about intimidation or killing or anything like that. *IF* I was talking about that, but I am not. YOU are. I was talking about carrying guns around the street, and specifically for defense. In that context, what other words can possibly apply? Seriously, you don’t like my words but offer nothing softer, and I’m not even against the guns! I simply recognize them as a weapon, and in SELF-DEFENSE I recognize that it’s used to threaten. How is that a loaded term? If I’m attacked and I point my gun at the other person, what ELSE can I possibly be said to be doing, regardless of my good reason as a honest citizen? Give me an “unloaded” term please, I got nothing!

            Finally once again YOU put words into my message that I specifically denied. I put intimidate and kill at the top of the list because I was talking about self defense and the purpose the gun was built for! TO BE CLEAR ONCE AGAIN, I know it is a TOOL, and the USER determines the intent, and the majority of gun owners are not threatning or harming others. I GET that…but it’s not a flower, it’s a weapon.

            You don’t want to threaten or kill anyone of course, that’s because you’re normal (unlike cops), but if you are attacked, you will use/brandish your gun, correct? when you do, how would YOU describe what you’re doing? I can’t do it without using what you see as harsh, anti-gun words, so let’s read YOUR soft pro-gun words instead.

            I don’t mean this as an insult, I just don’t know how loving or casual to the gun I must seem before you stop seeing me as some anti-gun pacifist or something.

            Still, if it means anything, sorry for any potential offense on bad wording?(smile).

            • Mamba,

              You’re the one flagellating this deceased equine, not me.

              You elected to use the terms. I replied that using those terms is demagogic – and explained why. At length. We’re not debating the meaning of words as considered in isolation. We’re debating your choice of words – “intimidate and kill” – which you’ve chosen because you feel that’s primarily why a person carries a gun. It’s nonsense. Demonstrable, provable nonsense.

              Self defense is just that. Not “intimidation.” Thugs and bullies try to intimidate people.

              Do you comprehend the difference?

              “Killing.” Again, a loaded word that implies aggressive violence. Self-defense is not aggressive violence.

              Do you comprehend the difference?

              Enough, already.

              I’m not wasting keystrokes on this again.

      • It’s not so much a factor of how much crime we have, it’s more the fact that there is a small but measurable chance that I could be assaulted and perhaps killed. It’s a cost-benefit thing. The cost of carrying a gun is low. The cost of not carrying having a gun when I need it is high.

        And your example of the theater is backward. You don’t need to have everyone armed in the theater, what you need is for the attacker to not be sure that no one is armed. Some idiot thought that by not allowing guns in the theater the shooting could never happen. It seems they were wrong. The attacker went out a side door and came back armed.

        • Ok, so crime is NOT rampant, but it’s precieved that the gun MAY be required, so better safe than sorry. Ok, that’s 2 votes to “safe society but still…” against “definate threats” 🙂

          My example of the theater (actually Don brought it up to be fair) was if all that’s needed is for “some idiot to be sure that NO ONE is armed”, and the staff has posted armed guards in the theater, than that problem is solved. Having EVERYONE armed means nothing anymore as they’d know a gun is ready to shoot them from the staff, and you’d have no problem leaving YOUR gun at the desk apparently. But Don clearly stated that he would still not feel safe in this scenario and hence would insist on the gun, so HE’S actually invalided your arguement. You 2 can discuss that aspect, I’ll just read the responses and learn from ’em. 😉

          Thanks for the response! Greatly appreciated.

          • The flaw in your logic has already been attended to by Don. That is, the idea that we should rely on others to protect us.

            Who values your life more – you or some paid guard? What if the guard decides to chickenshit – and leaves?

            Feel free to place your trust in hired goons.

            I prefer to place my trust in me.

            And, again: You miss the main point entirely – which is that crime goes down when criminals know people are armed. It’s so obvious I have trouble understanding that anyone can’t appreciate it.

            Whom would you rather try to rob? The person who very well might have a gun and know how to use it? Or the person you can bet is unarmed – and so, helpless – courtesy of gun bans that predators tend to, you know, ignore?

          • You make very good points, including the logic flaw which I replied to already, and I actually agree with your points remember. but it’s all completely off topic anyway and hence irrelevant.

            Remember again the original question was whether crime is rampant or not basically. We’re still discussing personal responsibility and the like, which isn’t actually in question (I agreed with you on this a while back).

            What WAS in question is whether the crime rates are actually so bad that guns are a requirement, or just a precaution?

            As for your crime stats, sorry it’s not that obvious, because almost NOBODY has guns around here and there is very little crime. You told me that guns are common in your area and the crime is low. Clearly guns are not a factor in this equasion. Hence the reason for my original question…

            This is very informative BTW, thanks!

  16. Hi Rene,

    You probably keep a fire extinguisher in your home. People keep guns for similar reasons. It’s not likely you’ll have a fire – or need to draw a weapon for self defense. But if you do have a fire, you’ll be very happy to have that extinguisher on hand. Same as regards guns. If a violent thug comes at you – or breaks into your home – that gun in your hand could be the difference between life and death.

    And yes, some areas of this country are very dangerous indeed. Feral thugs who will kill you (or worse) for the sheer sick pleasure of it. Part of the reason for this is the existence of a fairly large underclass. Also, a system that does not deal with such people appropriately. By which I mean, severe punishment the first time they act violently. Not the second or third or fourth time they do.

    But the much deeper and far more important reason Americans are virulently “pro gun” is because they understand that being armed is the final defense against organized thuggery – the state. I hope it never comes to that. But if it does, being armed will be a blessing of incalculable value.

    • Yes I keep a fire extimguisher at home…but the similar analogy would be if you felt you needed to carry one everywhere you go because you believe arsonists run rampant in the streets. That’s why I made it clear I support the gun carry…if it’s necessary. I was questioning the society that MAKES it necessary.

      For comparison, where I live I would be hard pressed to find someone who even OWNS a gun let alone carry it everywhere they go. The thought that you’d need to bring one with you going to the store would be considered extreme. Yet USA it seems standard.

      As for the organized thuggery in blue, THAT I agree with 100% since it’s a clear threat walking the streets. But like the original post emntioned, maybe it’s the “must be armed at all times” emntality that BREEDS the thuggery once you remove the restrictions of punishment? not sure, which is why I asked the question. Thank you for the reply!

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